Trim Take: Boho Chic

It’s the final week of our Trim Take blog series, and we are getting so close the the official launch of Trim Design Co.!!  Before I jump into my take on ‘Boho Chic’ I thought I’d give you a chance to get to know Jen and me a little better.   

Jen and I met while working together at a design firm in Boston and bonded immediately over our mutual love of vintage kilim loafers (shout out to Artemis Design Co.!), collected interiors, and the hunt for the perfect piece.   As we worked together, we discovered that we shared a passion for people and quality over trends, and we felt sad at the developments we were observing in our industry: Environmental degradation caused by mass-production of fast-furniture, and impersonal trend-driven designs being churned out by big edesign tech companies.   Our answer was to create Trim, a firm focused on designing eclectic, collected interiors that are deeply personal and celebrate timeless vintage and artisanal pieces as well as emerging brands that prioritize environmental sustainability.  We are putting the finishing touches on the new website and we can’t wait to show it to you!

I had a blast creating this week’s design, because I’m taking on ‘Boho Chic’ style, one of my very favorite influences.  I found so many fantastic pieces to incorporate into both my room design and the mood board. I really hope you like it as much as I do!  To read Jen’s Trim Take on ‘Casual Modern’ head over to her blog Persimmon Design.  Be sure to check out our previous Trim Takes on ‘Classic Coastal,’ ‘New Traditional,’ ‘Rustic Industrial,’ and ‘Modern Farmhouse.

Trim Take: Boho Chic

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If these images are giving you heart eyes, then ‘Boho Chic’ is the style for you!  A true bohemian at heart, you’re drawn to natural textures, colorful patterns, and globally inspired details.  It’s important to you that your home be an expression of your personality, and you enjoy combining new and vintage pieces to achieve a collected, eclectic effect.  However, you understand the importance of curating your space to achieve a warm and care-free, but also modern and sophisticated feel. This style is sometimes referred to as ‘modern eclectic’.

Here are some suggestions to pull off this style:

  • Start with white walls to keep the design fresh and bright.
  • Add in color and pattern through accessories.  This way you can easily turn the volume up and down on your color palette.   
  • Incorporate natural materials like rattan, worn leather, raw wood, and jute.
  • Consider layering smaller rugs on top of larger ones to create depth and add interest without clutter.
  • Combine textiles from different regions such as African mud cloth, Japanese shibori, Turkish kilim, and Moroccan cactus silk to give the space a global nomad vibe.
  • To add some contrast and balance out the natural, vintage feel of the space, choose streamlined light fixtures and hardware in warm metallic finishes like brass and gold.
  • Keep things cozy and casual with floor pillows, pouf ottomans for extra seating, fuzzy sheepskins, and of course plenty of plants.

Related Styles to Explore: Classic Coastal, Casual Modernist, Rustic Industrial

 

Here’s a rendering I created of a ‘Boho Chic’ bedroom:

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I have a formula of sorts for designing bohemian inspired spaces, which I used to create this room.  First, I started with white walls to keep things light and bright. Next I sourced the rug. I prefer to bring in color with a large rug and then use a few accessories to sprinkle the color around the space, while keeping all of the furniture neutral.  I do this because, for me, having the saturated color on the floor grounds all the neutral furnishings and keeps the space from feeling visually chaotic. It’s also a good rule of thumb to start with the rug, because it’s easier to match furniture and accessories to a rug than to find a rug that is the right size and goes with all the furniture and accessories.  Notice how I chose a rug that’s colorful, but also has some beige in it? This makes it easy for me to create a room that feels cohesive, because I can pull out that beige color and match it to the furniture. That means I’m going to be looking for lighter than average woods and leathers. This stunner is a vintage rug from Loom and Kiln, but I also recommend Blue Parakeet Rugs, New England Loom, Collectiv Co., and Etsy.  Lulu & Georgia is an awesome source for both vintage and new rugs.  I have two vintage Turkish runner rugs in my hallway from an Etsy seller called The Oushak Shop.

After walls and rug, step three is bringing in furniture in a variety of natural textures. I like to aim for a mix of rattan, leather, wood, and woven natural fibers.  I’m going to detour for a sec here to talk about rattan because I get a lot of questions about what it is exactly and how it’s different from wicker. Rattan refers to several hundred species of climbing palm, similar to bamboo, that is commonly used as a material to make furniture and other decor items like baskets.  Wicker is not a material at all; it’s actually a style of weaving.  In fact, often times rattan is used to create wicker-style furniture, which is why you may hear people use both terms to refer to the same piece of furniture.  One word describes the material, the other describes the style of construction.

Back to the design- I started with the bed because that’s going to be the focal point.  And I prefer to use upholstered headboards because they just hold up so much better than anything else.  Tufted or nailhead styles are typical for upholstered headboards, but they’re too traditional and formal for my taste, and definitely don’t give me boho vibes.  So I look for very simple upholstered headboards without any fancy stitching details- it’s almost a slipcover look that I’m going for. I choose a nice beige to build my warm neutral palette off of.

After the bed, I add the chair.  I’ve been dying to use this chair in a design.  It’s a traditional club chair silhouette, but done in a woven rattan with an exaggerated swoop to the back.  Now I need a dresser with a natural, organic feel and the right color of sandy beige. I could choose a painted one, but I prefer the look of raw wood for that all-natural boho spirit.  I found this dresser at Mcgee & Co which specializes in modern farmhouse designs, but actually has some versatile pieces that can work for a variety of styles as proven here.  

Last, I need some contrast to add depth and interest, so I pull out the black from the rug and use that color for bedside tables.  If you look at the furniture in this room, with the exception of the chair, all of these pieces would be right at home in an uber modern design.  That’s my trick for achieving the ‘chic’ in ‘Boho Chic.’ But *mostly* limiting the global and colorful elements to the accessories, the room retains a sophisticated, adult feel.  Global is the other important piece of the formula. The ‘Boho Chic’ style is all about the idea of a collected aesthetic, informed by your travels around the globe and an appreciation for the arts and traditions of other cultures.  In this room, I included a lidded African basket for laundry, a leather pouf from Morocco, African mudcloth pillows and a Chinese Hmong pillow.  The rug is Iranian and the lamps are by American artists Priscilla Hollingsworth (bedside) and Jonathan Entler (dresser).  

Side note on rug terminology: When you see “Persian rug” this means it comes from Iran.  When you see “Oriental rug” this means it can be from Turkey, Pakistan, Afghanistan, India, China, Uzbekistan, and a few other places.  All of these rugs are hand knotted, but the knot used in the Iranian technique is different, hence the distinction in the names.  Oushak and Kilim also refer to styles of rugs from Turkey, and Cactus Silk or Sabra Silk rugs are Moroccan.

Thanks for tuning in to see how we do ‘Boho Chic’ here at Trim Design Co.  I hope you enjoyed this design as much as I did.  I love it so much I may try and convince Kean to let me do a One Room Challenge and get this look in our bedroom.  If you want to bring a ‘Boho Chic’ vibe to your own space, check out the shoppable mood board below, featuring some of my favorite sources for vintage and handmade pieces!

Get The Look: Shop our ‘Boho Chic’ round-up!

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Source list:

  1. Francesca Armchair, One Kings Lane
  2. “JT 3” Art Print, Shop A House in the Hills  
  3. Lodge Chandelier III by Workstead, Shoppe Amber Interiors
  4. Moroccan leather pouf, Babasouk
  5. Vintage Tai Lu Embroidered Hmong Pillow, CollectivCo
  6. Tassel Pillow, One Kings Lane
  7. Mid-century Fiber Art Wall Hanging, Chairish
  8. Custom Chautauqua Ottoman, Shoppe Amber Interiors
  9. Handwoven Eyelash Basket, Chairish
  10. Sabra Silk Pillow, Babasouk
  11. Vintage Rattan Peacock Headboard, Etsy
  12. Antique Khotan Rug, Chairish
  13. Zagora Tasseled Night Stand, Anthropologie
  14. Palma Lounge Chair, tinekhome
  15. Salt Glazed Table Lamp, 1st Dibs
  16. Marte Lounge Chair, Urban Outfitters
  17. Opening Credits Knit Blanket, Cold Picnic
  18. Stoneware Bottles, Helen Levi
  19. Miya Hanging Planter by Justina Blakeney, Jungalow
  20. “Sunset Vibes” Art Print by Lou Lou Avenue for The Poster Club
  21. Uli Dresser, McGee & Co.
  22. Entler Ceramic Table Lamp, 1st Dibs
  23. Ines Etagere by Justina Blakeney, Jungalow
  24. Vintage Persian Rug, Loom and Kiln

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