We're Currently Obsessing Over African Indigo Textiles and Here's Why
Discover 8 drool-worthy ways to use indigo-dyed textiles in your home this summer.
As the eclectic, boho design trend has continued to grow, so have a number of boho-inspired decor items. And African indigo textiles are at the top of the list.
These denim-esque, dyed pieces of fabric come in a variety of styles, and each vintage piece is unique in its size and pattern.
Indigo textiles have a unique history that dates back centuries. Before the invention of synthetic dyes, the ability to "decorate" white cotton cloths with indigo was a highly prized and specialized skill in African countries passed on from generation to generation. The unique thing about these textiles is that there is no dye release, so you can actually wash and dry them.
If you're lucky enough to have some indigo fabric to work with, you can use them in a number of ways throughout your home. Here are some of our favorites:
Depending on the size of your indigo textile, you can easily mix them in with your bedding. You can try using one as a throw and fold it at the end of your bed, or use larger pieces as coverlets. You could even wrap two pillows with a piece of indigo, creating the look of one longer lumbar pillow.
Indigo throw pillows are an awesome way to bring the boho vibe into your living room. You can use them on a couch, a lounge chair or even as throw pillows. They would also look great in a crib (in a funky kid's room) or on a banquette in a breakfast nook.
Indigo textiles look great draped over the back of a chair. You can use them as you would a typical throw. For this type of setup, pieces with tassels or fringe are a perfect choice. If you have several pieces of fabric, consider draping them over the backs of the chairs in your dining room. If you have upholstered chairs, you could even drape pieces of indigo over the seat area and tuck them in.
If you have several pieces of indigo, you can use this to create a faux slipcover for your sofa. You can take pieces and simply wrap them around your cushions and tuck them in as you go. This can work on both seat cushons or back cushions on the sofa, depending on what type of sofa you have. Don’t be afraid to mix up different styles of indigo and create a patchwork look.
Try draping pieces of indigo textiles over a curtain rod and using them as curtains or a faux valance. Even if you don’t have a curtain rod, you can tack pieces of indigo up or even use some small nails for smaller windows.
If you have a longer piece of indigo, you could use it as a "headboard" above your bed. Simply nail the textile to the wall and let it hang down. Again, tassels or fringe would look great for this sort of treatment. If you’d like to create this look but your indigo is too short, try using two pieces together.
Indigo textiles would also work beautifully on a small bench. You could "fake" the upholstery by draping and tucking the fabric on your own. Or you could take several pieces of indigo to your upholsterer and have them use it on the piece for a more permanent solution.
Patios and decks are also a great spot to bring in some boho style with indigo textiles. You can drape them on outdoor chairs and sofas (as you would indoors) or even outdoor benches. You can also use them as “blankets” on the lawn, or put them on the backs of your Adirondack chairs around a fire pit.
A deep blue ceiling pairs with indigo curtains in this bedroom to create the illusion of an endless open sky. The rest of the room is accented in whites, neutrals and metallics for a sophisticated contrast.
Packed With Style
Despite its size, this small apartment boasts a sophisticated galley kitchen packed with top-of-the-line amenities. Glass-front doors keep the cabinetry from weighing down the space, while an indigo runner points to the eclectic living room just beyond the fridge.
Designer SuzAnn Kletzien used striking and harmonious patterns throughout this eclectic blue living room, including neutral and dark navy velvets, subtle gold and blue stripes and a mineral-inspired pattern. A rich blue velvet fabric with a floral pattern was used to cover the custom-made ottoman.
Designer Sarah Stacey adds an unexpected touch to this bohemian-inspired living room by hanging a multicolored rug on the wall. The piece makes an easy focal point to the room and accents the simple, indigo-blue sofa.
Shades of Blue
Deep, indigo grasscloth wallpaper is visually balanced by crisp, white wainscoting in this chic, transitional dining room. Extra depth is added by the modern blue artwork and zig-zag chair upholstery.