Moiré Patterns Ripple Through Elegant Homes

The moiré pattern is a timeless, elegant addition to any decor. It can be produced with any ribbed or corded fabric, which can be moistened and machine wrapped in a high temperature, which makes a gentle cascading watermark. This ancient process has survived the test of time, changing to suit every age without losing its allure. The subtle elegance of the delicate design functions on furniture, fabric and background — moiré never goes out of fashion for long.

DKOR Interiors Inc.- Interior Designers Miami

A brief history. Moiré is a blueprint, not a cloth. The term derives from the Arabic word “mukhayyar,” literally translated as “goat hair fabric.” It was a fine, woven fabric produced by angora goats in Turkish villages, particularly Ankara.

Historical references as far back as the 14th century mention Ankara’s rising fiber industry. Mukhayyar came to be called mohair and then moiré. This wool was judged to be even finer than silk. It took washers, dyers and pressers in addition to weavers to produce it. Although versions of the titles moiré and mouarie changed between England and France for centuries, the literal interpretation of “moiré” is “watered mohair.”

From the 18th century, some cloth with a natural flat rib can be folded lengthwise and pressed through heated rollers. The ribs that didn’t align were flattened, resulting in the watermark on both sides of the cloth.

Cotton and taffeta were the hottest and complex materials during the 18th century, and ball gowns made from moiré proved highly desired by queens and the gentry. By 1600 to 1750, during the baroque age, moiré cloth became the go-to selection for drapery and cushions.

This white high-gloss room delights in the strong color of the moiré cushion sitting gently on the old-Hollywood-inspired seat.

Nicole Benveniste Interior Design

Historical moiré. Writings in the 1600s reveal that moiré watermarking (also called waving) began from the dyeing process. A large pot was set over a piping-hot fire. The coloured dyes were added, then the bud was half filled with water. A layer of fabric was added, then a layer of wood planks, with layers added until the top was reached.

The impression and weight of the wood would render gentle waves of color that filtered through the fabric. It was believed that the pieces of fabric that got the biggest waves in constant, perfect lines were the best pick, and Turkish elders received these as a indication of respect. Ankara was the exclusive exporter of mohair fabric to Europe before the 1800s.

DKOR Interiors Inc.- Interior Designers Miami, FL

Modern moiré. The machines that produce moiré finishes now use a technique called calendering. The woven cloth is brushed and moistened, and pliers with engraving or ribs are conducted across the fabric. This is accomplished at a very high temperature.

The pressure from the rollers generates the waves by beating the fabric threads or setting the color. The same tried and true techniques in the 18th century still employ but now use 21st-century automation.

The background in this toilet is a professionally crafted illustration of the moiré pattern and provides the space a gorgeous silvery glamour.

Harte Brownlee & Associates Interior Design

Maintenance of moiré. Moiré is considered mainly as a silk cloth, but these days cotton, rayon and wool are just as popular. Provided that the fabric is ribbed or corded, it may take the moiré therapy.

Moiré fabrics require particular attention. Silk or rayon ought to be dry cleaned. Water can cause your product to loose its luster, therefore check the label or manufacturer’s directions before cleaning it. Ironing or steaming moiré is generally not recommended; folding can retain the creases.

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