Decorating Dilemma: Elizabeth’s Fabric Scheme

Choosing a fabric scheme for a living room

Decorating Dilemmas is a weekly column in which our stylists answer your design questions, so you can tackle your home decorating project with complete confidence.

Dear How to Decorate,

I have a Chesterfield sofa that is a basketweave light gray material, and I have an armchair I’m planning to recover. I wanted to know about what fabric I should select for the chairs! Can it be solid too or should I have a subtle design in the chairs since the sofa is a solid?

Thanks for your help,


Elizabeth's chair

Dear Elizabeth,

In keeping with your lighter, softer color scheme, we have lots of options. Because there are no other colors dictating a color direction for the room, you can select a fabric that speaks to your personality. We have rendered the fabrics on a similar chair frame so that you can see how they might look.

Since your chair doesn’t have a tufted back to distort the fabric pattern, most any pattern will do nicely. The neutral appeal can be  achieved with a tone-on-tone or textured fabric like our Davidson Herringbone or Pallini Sand for a neutral color block.

Try a classic approach with a fabric like Halyard Natural or mix up some neutral fun with an animal print like Nomad.

Don’t be afraid to add a totally new color in the room. Our Halyard Mineral is a rich blue-green that would look wonderful with the gray sofa. Likewise, the Kaley Aqua has a touch of the gray and will add a punch of color into the room.

Whatever you choose, play with layering the lighter and darker tones in fabrics throughout the room to create a rich environment. We chose a few other complementary fabrics to go with each sofa and chair combination!

Best of Lucl,

The Design Team

Choosing a fabric scheme for a living room

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Caroline McDonald

Caroline lives for pairing together patterns, mixing furniture styles, and oogling over our newest furniture pieces. As you can imagine, her little 1920's craftsman is in a constant state of flux. Here on How to Decorate, it's her goal to help you turn your home into your own little slice of paradise.