It’s been a long winter, but the birds are singing outside. Like flowers, they are a timelessly popular motif in interior decorating, especially now with the current trend for all things natural and organic. We bring you a selection of bird fabrics, from updated classics to playful and kitsch.
From scary birds to glamorous birds, Timorous Beasties‘ Birds n Bees – not cheep at £150 per metre (excuse the pun), but a great take on a classic with vibrant birds on a monochrome background. Also available as a wallpaper in 6 colourways.
For lovebirds, it has to be Duet, by Swedish firm Almedahls. Available from Hus & Hem.
A re-vamped classic – with a pedigree – from the GP & J Baker archive. Pertelote was designed in 1917 and first printed for W & J Sloane of New York whose decorating commissions included the White House and the Vanderbilts’ Mansion in Newport. It has been updated with bold, digital printing and is available as a wallpaper or fabric in 3 colourways.
Louise Body‘s subtly beautiful Garden Birds is one of three bird fabrics (and a number of wallpapers) in her current collection. Her wallpapers feature everywhere from the V&A archive to Topshop!
You won’t have to migrate to get hold of this Menagerie fabric from Spoonflower in the USA, as they will ship to the UK. The birds have all been drawn from photographs taken by the designer, giving her licence to say that she has “personally met them all”! It can be printed on a choice of 10 different fabrics from basic cotton to silk crepe de chine, and if you want to design and print your own fabric Spoonflower can do that too.
A new fabric for 2013, Laura Ashley‘s Weeping Willow is more willow than birds, but its muted palette will make a pretty backdrop in classic or contemporary settings. Also available as a wallpaper.
OK, so there are no birds at all in this one, but its pattern of hanging bird cages in lime green on a crisp white background is fresh and up to the minute. Also available featuring hot pink cages on white. Designed by Sarah Waterhouse and printed by hand on sustainable fabrics with chemical free inks.
Another Swedish design, with Arts and Crafts influences, from Hanna Werning who trained as a graphic designer at St Martin’s in London. Called Kvitter, which means ‘chirp’ in Swedish, it features finches, butterflies and fruiting vines and is available from Hus & Hem.
A vintage French feel from a great British style icon, Celia Birtwell. Originally a textile designer, she has been back in the limelight in the last few years designing collections for Topshop, among others. Bird Song is available in 3 colourways.
To celebrate their 150th anniversary in 2010, Sanderson rejuvenated this elegant design – originally from the 1930′s – to form part of their Vintage collection. It comes in 3 colourways and as a wallpaper.
If you have grown out of Ikea, but still love Swedish design, Svenskt Tenn may be what you’re looking for. This interior design company was founded in Stockholm in 1924 and quickly became known for its bold and elegant patterns. It was awarded a royal warrant in 1928, which it still holds today. This is Grona Faglar, designed by Josef Frank, and cheerful enough to see you through the longest, darkest Scandinavian winter.
Mark Hearld’s Dove Flight, available from St Jude’s, is entirely home grown. Mark has a masters degree in natural history illustration and has designed a selection of items for the Tate’s shop. If you like his work but don’t want new curtains, buy a print.
The fresh, summery colours of Klippan Sherwood, created by Swedish design duo Erdholm Ullenius, will bring a little bit of outdoors indoors. Available from Hus & Hem.
Vanessa Arbuthnott may be better known for her muted, quintessentially English fabrics and wallpaper but this cheeky Chicken Check is great fun. Also available in oilcloth.
Last, but by no means least, for this post is Flight, by Scion. The silhouetted birds in a cloudless summer sky have an uplifting retro seaside feel. Just add ice cream.