Fabrics for home decor come and go in popularity, but one that has always proved remarkably resilient to changes in fashion is linen.
Linen is thought to be the oldest fabric in the world, in use since at least the time of the ancient Egyptians. Although it’s no longer in such demand for wrapping up mummies or weaving into armour as it was in the past, linen is still a staple of everything from clothing to home furnishings. And, as we’ll explore below, the reasons behind this are clear.
Linen is at least three times as strong as cotton. If you’re looking at pieces that see a lot of use, such as tablecloths, napkins or bedding, you want a fabric that is going to last you for years, and that you can wash regularly with no concerns about it shrinking. It’s no surprise that many people choose to give linen bedding or homeware as wedding gifts, as these can quite feasibly be passed down through many generations if they are cared for properly.
Another advantage with linen home furnishings, especially for those of us with already hectic lifestyles, is that it requires very little care beyond washing. With linen, it’s all about the classic, elegantly wrinkled look, so your linen pillowcases, duvet covers, and tablecloths - they never need to see an iron if you’d prefer it that way.
The surface of linen is nubbly, and slightly rough, so that it has a way of catching the light in a way that other fabrics don not. When layered with other, smoother fabrics, it allows you to play around with textures in your bedroom, lounge or dining room in a variety of ways. It can be printed in many patterns and bright colours, but for many people the natural linen colour carries a lot of appeal.
One aspect that linen aficionados will often tout is that it’s perfect whatever the temperature. Linen keeps you warm in the winter -- picture a comfortable sofa draped in linen throws for your hygge atmosphere -- and cool during the summer months. This is especially pleasant when you’re sleeping in linen bedding, as it is moisture absorbent, so even if you sweat, the linen stays wonderfully soft and comfortable. It truly is a fabric for every season.
Linen is known for being very eco-friendly when compared with other fabrics such as cotton, and we all know the importance of going green whenever possible. The linen flax plant is a hardy one, requiring little in the way of water or chemicals to flourish. It’s also a fantastic option for anyone who suffers from allergies or skin conditions, as it is anti-allergenic, and mildew-resistant. Linen towels are getting very popular at the moment for precisely this reason.
There are so many ways that linen can be brought into your home, adding texture, comfort and above all elegance. You might keep a linen throw at the end of your bed, drape linen curtains to allow plenty of light into a room, or even employ it for a hardy, easy-care apron in the kitchen or garden. It’s a fantastic gift for a loved one, and many linen home furnishings can also be conveniently sewed to custom shapes and sizes. Expect linen to remain a favourite of interior designers for many years to come!
About the Author:
Vita Murauskienė is the founder of Magic Linen. Magic Linen is a family business that combines skills in textile, décor and business. We care a lot about eco-friendly, organic and slow living. We cherish classic values, at the same time being modern, opened to a world and new ideas, doing our best with a lot of enthusiasm and hard work. These principles reflect in the goods we deliver – we choose the most organic fabrics and rather enjoy the accurate process of making items by hand than going to big factories.