Tapestries have been around for centuries; they’ve been used as shrouds, blankets, bed curtains, robes and upholstery. Their biggest value, however, may have always come from simply hanging on the wall. Tapestries have been energy savers since the first king hung the first pictorial story of his conquests on the stone that made up his dining hall.
How Tapestries Save Energy.
Tapestries are natural insulators. They help add a dense layer to the wall, forming a stronger barrier against cold and drafts seeping through. They absorb heat and release it back into the room instead of letting it seep through the walls and windows, decreasing the need for excess heat and helping to balance a room’s temperature.
In the summer, tapestries help keep homes more comfortable, preventing cool air from escaping the same way as they keep the heat in during cold weather. This makes them a sensible choice for wall coverings, as they serve a purpose by acting as insulation. The larger the tapestry, the more coverage is obtained and this is also a great way to cover windows in a room used for sleeping during the daytime.
There are many advantages to tapestries over traditional methods for preventing heat or cooling loss (foil over the windows or extra space heaters). Using tapestries in this fashion harks back to the days of castles when tapestries were used not only to make rooms warmer but were pressed into service as bed hangings so the nobles’ body heat would be contained. Tapestries doubled as coverlets in some households, and many small weavings are still used as lap robes or throws today.
Tapestries can be Functional and Beautiful.
The other side to tapestries is their decorating potential. Any home can benefit aesthetically by the addition of some fine wall art, and you can choose from any style, era or genre you wish. Look for a coat of arms if you are intimate with the genealogy of your family, or opt for a traditional oriental tapestry with depictions of dragons or gardens. Tapestries from India feature elephants and other exotic animals as well as intricate floral designs.
The Medieval years and ensuing Renaissance kicked off an entirely new field of tapestry art, as tactiles drew abreast of painting and sculpting. With this rise to the proper level by woven works of art came the new fad toward reproduction. Making sure that the quality stayed consistent and that each tapestry was still unique became the job of master weavers who tutored young apprentices and journeymen in the trade.
The beautiful tapestries available today are affordable due to the invention of the Jacquard loom, which hastened weaving time and greatly reduced the costs associated with producing tapestries. Since they were now affordable, tapestries rapidly became much more readily available to the average home owner.
The twentieth and twenty-first centuries have brought even newer delights to tapestry lovers everywhere. Many tapestries have been discovered in the last century, and been successfully restored. Copies of these are guaranteed conversation starters! Some of the most famous tapestries, Lady and a Unicorn, or the Tree of Life, have become so popular that finding a reproduction is not hard. Others, such as obscure religious scenes, may be harder to find.
Why Choose Tapestries to Cover Your Walls?
Tapestries have been used as decoration almost as long as they have been used for drafty halls. They offered the perfect medium through which to translate events throughout the land. Wars and battles, meteor showers and historic novelties were all worked in bright colors and annotated with additional characters; ribald humor and a down to earth across the board manner was designed to deal with the average man.
This offered monarchs and priests the influence to regulate what news their serfs received, and how it was taken. As time went by and the art evolved, many things began to be depicted on tapestries. Simple everyday tasks like harvesting, feeding geese or riding after the hounds were common and popular. Others included Raphaelite Angels or New Testament scenes.
Still other types of tapestry, used primarily to please the eye, can be bought and used on the wall, the couch etc. The value of having a wall covering that can fit the space required is high, and any nook or cranny can benefit by a small tapestry that fits your overall decor.
Plan on adding tapestries to your list of Home and Garden projects – when your redecorate and refurnish, you should look into woven wall art and see if it will work in your own home. You an cut down a little on energy costs and present an edgy, classic style of decorating to your friends and family. Insulation and decoration – the tapestries can help make a room pop, and serve a dual purpose that represents green living at its finest.