The Eternal Appeal of Christmas Velvet

Text: Inês Grego

Known as one of the most opulent fabrics, both in clothes and interiors, velvet is a luxury textile with a past that dates back to 2000BC in Egypt. Tracing history is a long adventure, with several important and turning moments. Velvet, always carried an elite reputation, was an expression of power, wealth and taste during the Renaissance. From the 15th century until the 17th, the patterned velvet textiles were at their golden age in Italy and Spain. Velvet is a unique texture with a smooth surface that can be presented in two forms. The name comes from the Latin word “vellus”: fleece, coat or hide, and describes well the typical finishing of the hair, which can vary in length and type. Nowadays can have a wide range of interpretations. It can be seen in luxury vests at a church, to erotic scenarios emphasizing sensuality (for example at Blue Velvet, David Lynch) and even in classic decadent interiors. This lush fabric is just about everywhere. Different textures can be used to awake different emotions and the majority are connected to specific feelings. For example, patent increases the feeling of something cold and distant. Velvet on the other hand, provokes warmth and the desire of being surrounded by. Although, from its most known historical past, velvet evokes all the richness of clothes and decorations of the royal palaces in Europe. The surrealism and deep textures make the nostalgic ones dream about the parties of Marie Antoinette or the roaring 20’s in Paris where velvet played an important role in all these scenes. It’s not only about the clothes, but the interiors and small details. With that said, it’s not a surprise why nowadays velvet is very much associated with the holiday season, all the elements needed are there. The magic and dreams, the elegance and luxurious, the feeling of union and warmth of those we care for the mos and somehow velvet has never managed to lose its allure and this is for sure its most popular season. We crave decadence and opulence and velvet indulges us with its grandeur for the Holidays.