Creating My Own Black and White

Sometimes decor demands something simple and elegant, and I’ve discovered, that in my own home, black and white does the trick. I had a pair of amazing French antique chairs that I wanted to upcycle for my living room. When I first upholstered them, my room had a neutral pallet with beige walls. I wanted a bold black and white stripe to help these chairs make a statement. I selected a fabric with 8 inch stripes. However, it was not very durable and the white was thinner than I wanted it to be. I used it anyway because I couldn’t find anything that was better.

Fast forward to today. My room is now painted white with a bold fuchsia-purple rug and colorful art on the walls…a very different color scheme and look. These chairs still make a great statement in that room.

But I’ve not been happy with the fabric quality. So, I decided to design my own. I wanted to keep the bold 8 inch stripe. But the white needed to be as thick as the black. I hired a graphic designer—and along with my friend and mentor—we designed the right pattern for the bolt. 

There are many things I love about this fabric. First, it water and stain resistant. In fact, it could be used outdoors. And, it’s thick. Goodbye thin white! It’s also a muted black, instead of a stark black. That allows it to go with rustic decor as well as modern looks. 

I looks fabulous in my room, and the 8 inch stripe is perfect for both the top and bottom of chairs. A larger stripe would be too big to not let the white show and a smaller stripe would not be big enough to allow the black to dominate. I had to be thoughtful about how the stripe would work on the bolt, too. I needed the ends to be white to keep from wasting so much fabric. I can’t use a black stripe on the end of a piece. 

This is one of my signature fabrics I’ll be using on my new line coming out this summer.  And the best part is, I’m excited to announce that I’m selling it by the yard, too!  If you are looking for the same look, email me for pricing at [email protected].   

In my wildest dreams I wouldn’t have believed I would ever start designing my own fabric, but here I am doing it. I’ve got another signature fabric in production that’s based on a middle eastern tapestry. That one involves a little more graphic design work and color picking from the Pantone chart. I can’t wait to see that one!  Coming soon…


I'm Wendy Conklin, The Chair Stylist.

What brings me joy is helping others live more creatively. I design antique-inspired, boutique chairs, and I teach others how to do what I do. Check out my shop, services, and courses to bring more whimsy into your home and life!

Check out my online courses to spark your creativity and upgrade your joy, starting today!

10 Best Statement-Making Fabrics from Spoonflower

10 Best Statement-Making Fabrics from Spoonflower

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