Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Interior design terms and definitions series G-S

Parsons The New School for DesignImage via Wikipedia
The Interior design and decorating world can be a confusing place to be. If you live in South Carolina and would love to find an Interior designer or decorator, visit: South Carolina Interior Design Scout for available listings in your county.

Guimpe braid
A round or flat narrow decorative braided trim or cord of fabric used on upholstered furniture. Also called gimp or guipure.

A light that emits true color characteristics unlike fluorescent and other lighting that tend to give a room a yellowish cast. More energy efficient than standard incandescent lamps, but not as energy efficient as fluorescent lights. Developed by General Electric.


The side portion of a window treatment where fabric is draped vertically in soft folds on either side of a swag or valance.

The French word "matelasser" means to quilt or to pad. Intricately woven fabric created with two sets of warp and filler threads in a double weave, giving an embossed, puckered, or quilted effect.

A tall, slender, tapering, four-sided stone pillar with a pyramid top. Reproduced in table-top versions as a decorative accessory and used in high-end interiors.

Parsons table
A sturdy square table with block legs and an apron of equal widths. This was developed in the 1950s at the Parsons School of Design.


A luster or sheen that develops on an object's surface with use, wear, or oxidation over time. Usually associated with fine antiques, vintage, and leather furniture.

Entrance, porch, or walkway to a building with columns supporting a roof, which can be large enough to enable cars to drive under for protection while exiting a vehicle.

Primary colors
Three colors: red, yellow, and blue.

Ragging off
A paint technique/effect caused by rubbing/wiping a painted surface with a rag or piece of leather.

Receding colors
Cool colors that make surfaces appear more distant or smaller, such as blue, green, violet, gray, or bluish-greens.

Raised ornamentation that makes a design prominent by lifting it or cutting away the background or surface of a particular design.

Ready-to-assemble furniture.


An electric lamp or candlestick fixture attached to a wall. Also called girandole.

Shoji screen
A room dividing, translucent wood-framed screen with rice paper panels. Used as a standing art element, for privacy, or to define space.

Strong fiber from sisal leaves used to create floor coverings.

Slipper chair
Used in bedrooms or small rooms, this is a small, armless, high-backed, short-legged upholstered chair.

Authors note:  Didn't see the term you were looking for?  Don't worry this is the second publishing in a three part series. The third article covering terms T-V is forthcoming, so please keep an eye out for it.
For more information on interior decorating, visit: Dawns Interior Decor Solutions.
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