An icon, reborn
Who would’ve guessed that the person behind one of the hottest trends in interior design would be none other than fashion designer Coco Chanel? The story of bouclé (the French word for “curled”) furniture dates to the 1950s, when the famed visionary used a bouclé derivative to create her renowned little black dress and iconic tweed jackets. Up until that point, the fabric was exclusively used for workwear. But the immediate enthusiasm for these two Chanel designs took the fashion world by storm, fuelling the demand for bouclé.
From its wearable beginnings to the world of interior design, bouclé found its way into the interior design world, all thanks to interior designer Jean Royère and architecht and industrial designer Eero Saarinen. These two pioneered the trend by bringing upholstered armchairs, stools, and sofas in bouclé to the mainstream. The initial looks were inspired by the fashion emerging from the great fashion houses. Later, bouclé experienced its own type of golden age in the middle of the 20th century. After a few decades of fading into the background – bouclé is back in full force, bringing a modern but equally welcoming quality to the home.
But what is bouclé, exactly? It’s a looped yarn with an uneven weave, each little curl is tightly intertwined. Bouclé comes in a range of textures. Sometimes, its curls are tiny and tightly spiralled which creates a smoother and more uniform surface. But it can also be more loosely spun which helps it achieve that soft, fluffy texture. So dreamy! In a past life, bouclé was crafted exclusively from animal-derived wool, but today, the look can be achieved with affordable synthetic fabrics that play off colours and textures.
From raw wool, an imitation alternative, or a coarser texture, bouclé is found in many forms. These inviting weaves are the perfect combination of elegance and relaxation and blend perfectly with clean lines, adding a touch of warmth.
Nowadays, it seems like bouclé is a big deal on more than just furniture. It’s popping up all over our fashion choices too—with good reason. Thanks to its decadent and plush texture, bouclé envelops you in the coziest layers come cold weather. You’ll often see the material lining loose-fitting jackets and coats used on mittens or scarves. Fine by us! We think that the more bouclé, the better.
The same logic can be applied to our interiors: textured curly fabrics return to the fold with a contemporary spin, and these designs work well with curved furniture and clean, crisp décor. Bouclé sets the tone for the entire room, especially if the item in question is a statement piece like a sofa or armchair. It provides warm accents when used sparingly for a rug, wall art or colourful pillows.
Because the fabric is reminiscent of organic, raw materials it, bouclé creates an interesting visual contrast when paired with cooler materials like marble, metal, or stone. It works in a Scandi-inspired and minimally designed home, too, creating a softer atmosphere in light colours like white, ecru, or gray. Whether your bouclé furniture is the focal point of a room or an accent piece that imagines a world more mellow, it blends in beautifully anywhere in the home.
Winter is at our doors, and that means one thing: it’s time for cocooning. Grab the candles, dim the lights, and drape yourself in cozy fabrics. Throw in some soft, dense, or fuzzy bouclé and see how easily you’ll create an inviting atmosphere that will warm so much more than just your heart. Bouclé up, folks. It’s shaping up to be a cozy winter.