How to Decorate with Indigo Mudcloth Pillows
AFRICAN INDIGO MUDCLOTH IS HOME DECOR’S HOTTEST TREND AMONG INTERIOR DESIGNERS.
The textile has become a must have here in the states, and thus an important export for West Africa. It is becoming more and more prevalent in America’s fashion and home decor scene.
African mudcloth is also known as bogolan. It is handwoven into strips, sewn together to make one large piece and then often expertly dyed. Methods for dyeing include tribal patterns hand drawn and or stamped in mud, and also using a tie resist method and dyed using indigo.
The result is a design that the interior designers of today crave, but did you know that this is a centuries old practice with cultural significance?
Each design is unique, featuring one of a kind patterns that often come out like dots, ladders, butterflies or a DNA helix.
In the SHOPTEOT collection, we call this favorite pillow the TOTO, named after one of our favorite Yacht Rock Bands who wrote the smooth tune, God Bless the Rains! The song always springs to mind when we lay eyes on the lovely inky blues of this textile.
How to Decorate with Indigo Mudcloth Pillows
The rich hue mixes well in the TEOT collection that favors rich texture, earthy hue and a mix of pattern.
We source our African Indigo from local dealers here in Los Angeles that we have met through the antiques market circuit.
We feel that the inky blue hues of this hand dyed textile mix in nicely with the many indigos of other cultures, like the batik of the Hmong Hill Tribes, Chinese resist textiles, as well as the shibori tie-dye arts of Japan.
Tossed into the mix along with some fine greenery and the organic textures of rattan and wicker, your vintage indigo mudcloth is right at home.
GET YOURS TODAY
I’ll kick off the new “SHOP TALK” blog series with the news that we hope is news, but it all remains to be seen. Eep!
We are opening up SHOP TEOT as a real life storefront.
Our first ever brick and mortar shop is slated to open late Fall, in Southern Pines, NC.
Just typing it fills me with fear. Fear that I will jinx something for us.
Since last summer’s launch of ecomm via Etsy, Chairish, Amazon and Shopify, we’ve been keeping up with orders and fun product development ideas, brainstorming new collections for SHOPTEOT.com, and generally preparing ourselves for this next step in the evolution of The Estate of Things.
Today as I was bouncing back and forth between monthly budgets, marketing strategies and fresh blog post ideas it occurred to me that we should just go ahead and chronicle the journey of bringing this dream to life.
So that is our news!
Join us for SHOP TALK!
In this series, Sarah and I will jump into some small biz storytelling. Maybe the backend of business isn’t that glamorous, so we’ll do our best to keep you properly entertained while we shed some light on the secrets of the trade as we uncover them.
Right now we are taking a look at how we incorporated last Fall, what messes we are making trying to decipher mulit-state sales and use tax, how to keep on top of bookkeeping, how to set up inventory tracking, how to open trade accounts with wholesale vendors and which markets we will attend. Let us know if any of that intrigues you.
We also have a a couple of QnAs with other shopkeepers that we admire. We are so grateful that these ladies and gents have been kind enough to extend their stories to us to learn from along the way.
If you dream of opening your own shop up one day too, or if you just like our style and you want to keep up to date on our progress, send us your email address below for the occasional TEOT newsletter and status report.
African Indigo is sweeping the nation of home decor cool by storm. We think it works well in a range of modern styles from your maximalist boho homes, to a more lived in rustic modern farmhouse, as well as the more tailored and curated traditional style that favors a backdrop of creamy neutrals and pops of our favorite shades of navies and rich blues.
The mix of a well worn denim Indigo near a blue and white ginger jar for example is a pairing that can’t be beat.
Get in on the action by splurging on a few of your own whole pieces of this wonderful, well worn textile and mix it up with your home style. We’d love to see it!
Our favorite applications (besides custom pillows of course) is the easy layer of texture of warmth it provides when draped over your nearest sofa arm, bench ledge or upholstered headboard.
Drape your indigo with Parisian panache, via House and Garden
Amber uses a draped Indigo in just about every project. Her portfolio is full of inspiration.
Typically these textiles range in quality and quantity and are dealt at antiques markets and local textile trade shows by Malian men that work directly with sources in West Africa, from Mali, Burkina Faso, the Ivory Coast and more. We have been delighted to get to know some of our local dealers here in Los Angeles. Meeting up at markets or even digging through the Indigo van on side streets in the decorative arts district of Los Angeles has been a real thrill.
Applied here with the more bohoey of Boho vibes, via Jennifer Harrison
We dig and pick so that you can have the best options to choose from, whether you are here in LA and want to spare yourself the adventure, or if you are in a part of the country where it is harder to come by this fantastic handmade beauties.
Here are a few of the options available at the shop now.
You may have seen a touch of our latest MEGAN GERSCH + TEOT endeavors unfolding on Instagram! If so, we’re grateful to you for your positive response. It seems like everyone that I’ve shown this work to has really gotten into it! We’re so excited to FINALLY have the product up online and ready for sale!
A little bit ago we were going on to you about how much we are inspired by the rorschach trend, Where It’s At Rorschach. Now, we’re back to let you know how we are incorporating our recent crush for this look in the TEOT Shop through a wonderful collaboration.
We’ve teamed up with our friend Megan Gersch who I once worked with in the web dept at KCRW, a world famous public radio station here in Los Angeles best known for breaking artists like Adele, Coldplay and Beck.
Here is a little look at how we have turned design concept into product.
It all started via Instagram. Megan was sharing some snaps of her works in progress. As a jewel tone color lover myself, I had been enjoying them, but I was particularly drawn to this one.
You can see our @shopteot comment there! It was as easy as that. I took that exact pic and started playing around with it in Spoonflower. That’s a REALLY fun site, and I highly encourage you to consider it if you want to personally design your next fabric or wallpaper project.
I mocked up these images to share with Megan and see what she thought.
We ordered some samples, to see which fabric was the best and ended up choosing Spoonflower’s Linen Cotton Canvas. Initially I thought a sateen might really make the colors pop, but in the end, the linen not only provided a more saturated color, but it also speaks more to a more organic and laid back vibe that you guys love. It’s more TEOTy that way.
Here are the samples alongside some indigo, showing just how well these new patterns would sit in our collection of global textiles.
Once I showed Megan, she got pretty excited by the whole mirrored effect and she worked diligently on a number of beautiful hi-res patterns for us to work with.
We picked a couple favorites to start with, and here we are, so excited to take this yardage and turn it into beautiful pillows and cube ottomans.
Artist/Designer Megan Gersch is obsessed with color!
Her work with alcohol ink displays an organic evolution and a psychedelia that we feel makes for just the right accent in the TEOT home decor collection.
We are honored to have worked wth Megan to bring to life this exciting collection of pillows, upholstery fabrics and wallpaper designs! The result is a hypnotizing, kaleidoscopic digital manipulation of original alcohol ink paintings by Megan.
We feel that these patterns are a bold addition to the rest of the TEOT home decor collection. They cozy up fantastically among the tribal patterns of our mud cloth as well as our indigo pieces.
A HUGE sincere thanks to Megan for working through this with us. It was really something to bring this to life and we’re so excited by the response we’ve seen so far. We love the turnout and we hope everyone out there is ready to vote for Megan + TEOT with their dollar! <3