Design Recipes: 10 tips for using velvet in your decor

Cathy Hobbs
Tribune News Service

Soft, rich, luxurious, glamorous.

Yes, velvet is all of this and more.

Velvet is a plush, elegant fabric that can add a touch of refinement and elegance to nearly any space. It is also a wonderful contrast material that truly helps to warm up a room. While materials such as leather are hard or may be perceived as cool, velvet adds warmth and comfort and serves as a wonderful accent or contrast to materials such as fabric and leather. Velvet can also help to add interest and depth to decor.

When looking for interesting ways to incorporate velvet into your home environment, here are 10 Design Recipes tips:

1. Consider incorporating an accent piece into your space such as a bench. Benches are wonderful complements to a room.

2. Consider incorporating a velvet decor item in a bright or festive color. Velvet accents are perfect for where you may want to add a special pop of color.

3. Mix velvet with other materials such as faux fur, leather or fabric. Velvet can provide the perfect complement and can help to soften an overall look.

4. Look for interesting ways to incorporate velvet such as wallpaper or other wallcovering.

5. Bring velvet into your bedroom. Looking for ways to use velvet? Why not consider a velvet headboard? Bringing soft materials into your bedroom will help convey a feeling of calm and tranquility.

6. Layer your velvet pieces. Don’t be afraid to mix different color velvet elements or use more than one element of velvet. For example, pair a velvet bench with the accent of a velvet pillow.

7. Look for complementary velvet pieces to accent your decor such as side chairs.

8. Consider using darker fabrics. One of the interesting and appealing aspects of working with velvet is being able to see the plush hand of the material, which is typically easier to notice with darker colors.

9. Consider adding embellishing elements to highlight velvet pieces such as tufting or nail heads.

10. Purchase some large upholstered pieces to make a bold statement such as sofas, chaises and benches.

Cathy Hobbs, based in New York City, is an Emmy Award-winning television host and a nationally known interior design and home staging expert with offices in New York City, Boston and Washington, D.C. Contact her at or visit her website at