PEACOCKS, ZEBRAS, AND SNAKES, OH MY!:

ANIMALS IN DESIGN

It’s no secret that animals and nature are an abundant source of inspiration for interior design products and materials.  What began in the Victorian era as a new interest in the natural world, through displaying stag’s heads and stuffed pheasants, has transformed into the influence of animals that we see in design today.

When I think about animal influence in interiors, I don’t think so much about animal “motifs” as I do the impact on furniture design, textures, and materials.  If you take a look at the fabrics, wallpapers, rugs, and antique furniture in the homes of both past and present you can see the prevalence of animals in the finite details.  For example, chair and table legs from various periods were often carved in the likeness of animal feet or tusks.

Not only is the influence seen in antique pieces, but modern ones as well.  Modern furniture designer Hans Wegner is known for a unique interpretations of animals in the design of some of his chairs, such as the Papa Bear Chair or the Ox Chair.

Animals have also largely influenced fabrics and textures.  In one of my earlier posts I mentioned the gorgeous Peacock Cloth by Donghia.  It is carefully crafted from fallen peacock feathers that are hand-woven onto the fabric itself, creating an item truly inspired by the beauty of an animal.

Do you see animals and nature intertwined into the design world?  I encourage you to find you own examples and post links and images of them in the comments section, for additional inspiration!

Please click on an image to view gallery and captions.

Product Sources: Newel, Jean de Merry, Blackman Cruz, Lee Stanton, Danish Design Store, Donghia, Keleen Leather, Rose Tarlow, Stark, and John Nelson Antiques.