Design Crush: Furniture with Fabric Texture

By Kate Riley May 15, 2013

A few years ago I toured some local model homes and spied a beautiful media cabinet in a townhome with inset grasscloth panels – yum!  Since then I’ve been a fan of pieces of furniture that incorporate fabric or organic texture into the design, be it linen or grasscloth or burlap, and even animal skin.

grasscloth panels on furniture


I’m inspired by anyone who can pull off a great DIY version too, check out this dresser covered in grasscloth and nailhead trim! Find the this detailed tutorial at Elsee blog – she transformed a simple Hemnes dresser into a chic changing table, wow!

elsee blog ikea hemnes with grasscloth


I see a lot of high end furniture with fabric texture out in the marketplace and my mind is always clicking into the “bet you could DIY for less” mode. I absolutely love this Bretton Console from Jayson Home by at $950 it’s pricey. To create the look for less, combine this $69 Parsons console with burlap and upholstery tacks and you could end up with a fabulous knock off.

linen console look for less


… or apply a similar (but more detailed) treatment to a $299 Birkeland dresser from IKEA to achieve the look of the $2,400 Magdalena dresser from Horchow. Patience required! magdalena inspired ikea hack

Yesterday I spied this beautiful chest on Joss & Main with grassy texture under a fretwork panel overlay, love!  I wish I had a place for it. Sign up with Joss & Main here. *referral link

chest with textured panels


Ballard Designs sells a simple upholstered end table that fits anywhere and you can snag an ostrich covered table from Society Social, loving this texture!

upholstered tables


My friend Courtney featured a series of chests in his post about High Point Market and through him I discovered the Curate Home Purveyor collection – oh my word I’m in love with these textured home accents. Perhaps you can achieve a similar look with an inexpensive tiered round table from Overstock?


textured tiered table


… or mimic the look of these gorgeous chests from Curate Home with the IKEA Rast and some ring pulls …

 perveyor chest curate home

… or follow this step by step for a similar look with a linen wrapped RAST with nailhead trim by Hello Boudreau.

. linen covered rast


Don’t limit yourself to just solids – consider patterned fabrics too, like this snakeskin wrapped Goodwill console table, how fab is this reinvention by Emily at Recently!

snakeskin wrapped console table recentlyblog


Are you a fan of furniture upholstered with fabric?  

I’m crushing hard on the style of these pieces!




  1. Hi, I am totally in love with these pieces. You’ve done a great job collecting them, Kate…wonderful. I myself was drooling over a upholstered chair on pinterest last week that has a line of nail heads at the bottom and it simply look wonderful to me Here’s the link: . I really loved the idea of adding solid fabric to a piece and adding nail heads in a design or a pattern to it. WOW!

  2. Yes! Definitely crushing on fabric covered furniture and am plotting my own DIY. There is a tutorial on Martha Stewart’s site from her show where the linen is treated with a poly-acrylic finish after it’s attached to a table top. The finish alters the color, but protects it from dirt, etc.

    • Wow Shannon, thank you for that link, I hadn’t seen that tutorial but you’re right, using that technique would certainly add protection and how interesting that the technique dates back hundreds of years to old seafaring days!

  3. Wow! The furniture featured here really looks very elegant especially covered with stylish fabric textures. It’s really pricey but has justifiable results. Also, I’ve checked some of the links in the post. Thanks for sharing! :-D

  4. I love the look too, but I’m with Cassie, I’m kind of afraid of getting it dirty. Especially since I have a 2 year old running around. The grass cloth is something I’ve thought about doing after looking at some gorgeous MCM credenzas with grass cloth doors. Maybe some day I’ll give it a try!

  5. Since reading your post about touring the model townhomes, I’ve been searching all over the internet to try and find the name of the hardwood floors in the 3rd townhome you visited- no luck so far. We are building a house and I would just LOVE to have those floors!! It was the home with the diagonal placement of the hardwood and soft creamy colors they used to decorate with. Would you be able to tell me the name of the builder so that I may contact them and ask about the floors?!

  6. I love them Kate and they are definite show pieces for any home. My only worry would be the thing getting dirty! I hate seeing scratches or stains on furniture sometimes, but I think the look will definitely be worth the worry! Great suggestions too!

  7. Love the transformations. Just don’t think I would have the patience to do this right. ;)

  8. So I had no idea that I even liked fabric covered furniture but after this post I am in LOVE with it! I’ve already started thinking of all the places I can use it! Thank you so much for the inspiration Kate!

  9. I have pinned a few fabric covered dressers but haven’t taken the plunge. I would absolutely love to see a tutorial…

  10. Super! I was just lusting after a Ralph Lauren Home dresser that has faux croc drawers. I love it!

  11. LOVE this post! What an awesome idea…
    Especially loving the last piece that’s covered with snakeskin. So inspiring!

  12. This looks great, especially in the first photo. I would also be afraid about getting them dirty, but if you do it yourself, you can always change the fabric. And it is definitely cheaper than to buy new furniture, when you decide to redecorate.

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