A Contrast in Upholstery

When it comes to upholstery, things can get pretty standard… beige fabric with wood legs & maybe a nailhead thrown in to make it look dressed up.  Well have you ever considered a contrast welt?  Contrast piping is something that has been around for ages & can really make a piece of furniture come to life.  Would you?  Could you?  Let’s see some examples to prove it can be bold & sophisticated at the same time.

First off, a welt or piping is a trim piece of cording that is added at the seams of upholstered goods or pillows.  If you are having a custom piece made or reupholstered, the piping can be added even if it wasn’t originally there.  Creating a contrast helps to define the lines of the furniture & draw attention to the details.


This lovely settee is traditional in style however the punch of red piping adds an unexpected element that leans itself to a more eclectic feel.

via The Marrying Type

A no fail method when selecting your contrast color is to look at the other fabrics with in the space.  The yellow piping & tufted buttons help to tie this banquette into the pillows & dining chairs completing the look.

via Mrs Howard Personal Shopper

Keeping things fresh and young, this pairing of salmon & yellow screams summer to me.  The addition of the two seams down the inside back creates a simple pattern that would otherwise be just a simple chair.

via Traditional Home

If you are looking for something a little more subtle, pair a print for the overall fabric with a coordinating solid as the piping.  This look still provides a contrast in fabrics while keeping the palette simple.

via Traditional Home

The piping can also act as a border in between two different patterns.  Using a solid welt helps to marry the geometric & the floral pattern on this classic chair.


If you are not brave enough to try a fully upholstered piece, this look also really stands out on pillows too.


Everyone needs a little pop of excitement, why not in the form of a contrast welt right?!?

xo-Kristin | The Hunted Interior


This Post Has 1 Comment

  1. Rachel says:

    Kristin– I LOVE contrast piping! There’s something very southern about it, I think. Glad to see that it’s catching your designer’s eye, too. :)