How to Use Contrast Piping

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I had a very inspiring conversation with a sales associate, Jason, at Urban Barn the other day that got me thinking.  I was extolling the piping detail on a sofa on their floor and we got talking about the contrast piping.  It got me thinking about the many possibilities.  We have had furniture made with piping and very much enjoyed it.   Check out these adorable little ottomans and funky pillows.

But it got me thinking about all kinds of possibilities of where we could include contrast.  I hope these images inspire you to come up with other ideas.  I would love to hear your thoughts and applications for this trend!

Patti Houston, Owner

Patti Houston

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  1. Contrast piping certainly adds definition to the architectural structure of the piece and I’ve been seeing more of this lately. It’s probably more about personal taste, but I prefer piping on couches and larger pieces to be the same color & fabric as the upholstery. I think couches & large upholstered chairs have greater longevity & classic appeal if they’re tone on tone. One potential downside to contrast piping is that when the fabric shifts away from the intended shape of the foam padding inside, those shifts are much more obvious with contrast piping. Seat cushions in particular have a tendency to shift & look slightly lopsided over time, which becomes much more noticeable with contrast piping. Personally I enjoy contrast piping mostly as a fun detail on smaller & seasonally changeable items such as cushions, ottomans, table runners, napkins, and bedding where it doesn’t tend to shift easily or start looking lopsided. Any other thoughts out there?

    • Great point, thank you for sharing. It is always wise to play it a little safe with your investment pieces like sofas or arm chairs. It is so important that we don’t get to carried away with trends when we are looking for longevity in our furniture! Pillows, ottomans and other smaller upholstered items are the perfect place to play with fun accents like accent piping, and much easier to replace than an entire sofa! We especially love the little ottomans, they add fun to a room and can be updated when the trend has moved on.

  2. Catharine Barbosa-Sousa says:

    I love it!!!!! I think it’s been around for years but it just wasn’t mainstream.

  3. Catharine Barbosa-Sousa says:

    However I do feel that it can bring a casual feel to even a formal piece . With that said it all depends on fabric selection. There is a place for everything and every client. 🙂

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