11 fabrics I love in my home

11 fabrics I love in my home

I love upholstery fabrics. It’s one of the reasons I’m drawn to creating more interesting parasols. I think there’s a missed opportunity! I can’t wait to see mis-matched patterns and busy fabrics clashing across garden table cloths, outdoor sofas, sun loungers and parasols. Combined with a riot of colours from your garden flowers, I think we can make gardens more enticing than any room in the house.


My personal interiors style is quite minimalist and paired back. I soak up images of traditional English country houses draped in endless layers of floral fabrics, and Victorian houses painted head to toe in rich colours, imagining that next time I decorate a house, that’s the route I’ll go. But what seems to come out of me is more reserved. My husband hates that I’ve always painted every wall, in every home we’ve ever lived in, in the same off-white. I justify it by adding colour and warmth through the pictures, furniture and soft furnishings that go in those rooms. I do love colours and textures, and fabrics is the main place that manifests. These are some of my favourites in my home.


  1. Super long block printed horse cushion by Molly Mahon. This was a Christmas present, and I now officially have too many sofa cushions. We (the people of the house) can’t fit on the sofa at the same time as all of them.

horse block print cushion

  1. Also in this picture is a long slim bench my husband and I made last year. He cut an old shelf to size and secured the legs, I ordered some foam to size, and upholstered it with this olive and black overdye ticking stripe fabric from Howe at 36 Bourne Street. The fabric can be used on both sides. I originally made it using the other side but found it had too much of a sheen, so the perfectionist in me unpicked it and re-made it using this side which is a tad more faded and matt.


  1. This old love is a very large ottoman that was given to me by a university friend when she moved to Paris. It has subsequently moved into many many different homes with me, often being too big for my spaces, but too loved to ever let go of. I’ve upholstered it several times in its life with me, and had it professionally done about 5 years ago in this Rapture & Wright Albaicin linen. The kids use it as an assault course / wrestling pad, and it has held up well. 

Green and white ottoman


  1. I bought this cute, tiny desk for my son’s bedroom from the Futon Company, and then used a remnant from some blinds to cover the seat pad. My son certainly doesn’t care about this detail, but it brings me joy. The fabric is called Birds & Beasts and is a UK woven linen by Fanny Shorter.

small wooden desk with green and white cushion


  1. This bed was a wedding gift from my mum, but the original fabric (my choice at the time) was a mustard wool felt. Enter lockdown and too much time at home, I decided we needed an update. I ordered a layer of foam to cover the original layer of buttons and indents, and then simply staple gunned this hand screen printed golf course fabric by Safomasi.

 Blue and white fabric headboard


  1. I spotted this cushion in the window of a fabric shop in my early twenties. I was so taken with it (despite it costing over £100) that I travelled an hour back to that shop the next day to buy it. It was impractically large and out of my budget, but I’d never seen anything like it. Several years later, I discovered that the fabric design was by Josef Frank, and I’m still saving up to drown my house in all of his designs. 

Alex Sudron and big cushion


  1. Towels! They bring colour and texture to an otherwise cold, stark room, and I pride myself on finding towels in bright colours and stripes. The yellow one is from The Longing, and the blue and green stripe towel is from John Lewis. Watch this space for a towelling parasol! 

two towels on a red chair


  1. When I find a fabric designer I like, I tend to buy more than one design from them. So here is another Safomasi fabric called Peace Hands. It’s thick enough to make curtains without any liner. 

dark grey curtains with white hands motif


  1. My go to for plain fabric. Designers Guild Brera Lino. Comes in god knows how many colours.

dark green window blind 

  1. Our love seat by Love Your Home was made in Designers Guild Brera Lino, Swedish Blue. It’s also doing very well given the daily bashing it gets from two boys.

Sky blue sofa with cushions


  1. Another DIY headboard, this time in a Marimekko cotton, covering a cheap and ugly chenille headboard I bought off ebay.

blue headboard and blue duvet cover


  1. Another Fanny Shorter fabric called Fig. This is a footstool from Made.com. I found it hard to justify upholstering it in an expensive fabric, but I liked the simple shape, and nothing else I found came close. Plus, its only job is to hold discarded clothes in my bedroom, so how good quality does the construction need to be? 

upholstered footstool


If you’ve got a fabric you love and don’t yet know where to use it, we could create your dream parasol with it. Whilst linens and cottons will fade over time in the sun, with good care, or just for a special event, they can be used. It's also worth checking if your favourite indoor fabric comes in an outdoor performance version. Sanderson, Morris & Co, Christopher Farr Cloth and Schumacher all have patterns and designs that are available in two different fabrics - for indoor or outdoor use. 

At Plia Parasols we've built up a library and knowledge of the best fabrics for outdoor use, from all over the world. If you have a style in mind but haven't yet found the right fabric, save yourself the hunt and drop us a line. We might be able to quickly point you in the right direction, and have your dream parasol made and delivered within a month.

Luxury fabric from Italy
Sewn in England
3+ years fade-resistant
Luxury fabric from Italy
Sewn in England
High performace fabric from France
Sewn in England
5+ years fade-resistant
Designer fabric made in England
Sewn in England
3+ years fade-resistant
Stainless steel
Made in England
To fit 38mm pole
High performace fabric from Spain
Sewn in England
5+ years fade-resistant
Pay with Klarna to spread the cost over 3 interest-free instalments