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Decorating with Textiles: Textural Joy by Art That Moves

Christine Pensa of Art That Moves

Christine Pensa of Art That Moves

Rachel Biel hit the nail on the head about how I operate in her profile of my business – Art That Moves. She said, “But, my thinking is that Christine would like her work to move YOU in some way: to bring you peace, joy, serenity…” (See our Art That Moves feature on this blog.)

That’s how I want to feel in my home. My home is my sanctuary and my visual feast. My soul is fed by visual delights. The colours and textures of textiles have always called to me. I believe that textile art is to be used and loved.

I have framed some of the pieces I have just because I love the colour or texture. I could just as easily have thrown it across a couch. For instance in my bedroom below – you will see an antique suzani thrown across the end of my bed. It’s falling apart with age in places, but I still love to see it there at the end of my day.


Over the fireplace in my bedroom, I have framed a somewhat less valuable piece – though just as beautiful. It’s a woven depiction of the Mayan calendar from Chiapas, Mexico. I found a stunning olive wood frame and I knew they were meant to be together. It was professionally done and frankly cost about 4 times the value of the tapestry. It’s worth it though because it’s the first thing I see when I open my eyes and it never fails to delight me.


Rather than letting the many beautiful scarves I have sit in my cupboard when I’m not wearing them – I use them as throws. I switch them out often. In my bedroom window, sitting alongside screen printed pillows, is a merino wool hand printed scarf by the talented Canadian designer Virginia Johnson. In the summer I use lighter throws like Turkish towel style wraps or saris.


Likewise, another Virginia Johnson merino wool scarf sits at the end of a bench in my front hall. The black and white pillow is one of my own screen prints (linen with inspirational sayings), the green is (my current obsession) velvet ikat and the orange and black is a silk applique. The ikat I bought on Etsy. It’s from Turkey and matches up with one my sister gave me when she traveled there a couple of years ago. The applique one I bought at a thrift shop.


The velvet ikat obsession continues in my living room. I mix them with a couple of my own screen printed on cotton, a couple of cozy wool prints (it’s cold here!) and the poufs I carried home from Marrakesh.



One example of how to display textiles simply is the framed piece of sheeting pictured below. When my Mom died a few years ago my Dad asked me to go to France with him. One of the highlights of the trip was meeting this artist on the bridge to the Louvre. He was tearing up sheets and painting on them. I fell in love with this piece. It reminds me of one of Chagall’s line drawings. I think I paid the equivalent of $30 CAD for it. I bought a pre-made frame which has a plastic film instead of glass. I used two sided tape to stick the sheet to the back of the frame. Nothing archival about it – but it’s been there now 8 years and hasn’t faded in the least.

framed painted sheet france

Of course, being a print maker (I have a shop on Etsy – Art That Moves) I always have slight misprints. As a result I have a drawer full of my tea towels – which I can attest are great and hard wearing in the kitchen. One of my new designs, Love the Bees hangs on my oven.


Like all original art, hand crafted textiles bring a warmth and living energy to your home that mass produced goods can’t duplicate. Start collecting colours and textures that you love and you can’t go wrong. Your home will always be your sanctuary and continue to delight your visitors with it’s visual treats.

Visit Art That Moves on Etsy for more of Christine’s prints:


Decorating with Textiles Series

Many thanks to Christine for sharing her home with us for this series. Do leave a comment for her below. You can also contact her through her Etsy shop or her Profile Page on TAFA. Christine joined TAFA in March of 2013 and we have loved having her on board!

Would you like to participate in this series? The Decorating with Textiles Series is an ongoing project on this blog. Participating in this series is open to all of you out there who love textiles. Many of our TAFA members make beautiful decorative textiles and functional work as well and showcasing these homes can help stimulate new ideas of what to do with textiles. Seeing a photo online is much different from seeing how a textile will function in an environment. Many people appreciate textiles but have no idea how to display them or what to do with them. We’d like to have many people participate in this series, each bringing in their own ideas and tastes.

Contact me if you are interested and would like to submit a post:

rayela [@] comcast.net (remove spaces and brackets)

Visit TAFA to see inspiring art quilts, weavings and accessories for the home. Maybe you will find the perfect accent for your home!

Also check out our TAFA Market and our TAFA shops on Etsy!

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on Decorating with Textiles: Textural Joy by Art That Moves.
  1. |

    Your own screen prints of the black and white pillow are really fantastic. Your current obsession, the green velvet ikat attracts me very much. It is a good luck for you that one of your sisters gave you the Ikat. I want to keep the Velvet Ikat in my living room as like as your living room.

  2. |

    Wow! Your living room is gorgeous! Thank you for sharing this post.

    • |

      Thanks for the comments – as for the headboard – it’s an ikea fabric. Yes I did make it myself using a sheet of plywood a length of 2 x 2 along the edges and some batting. It’s stapled along the back. Not fancy.

  3. |

    What a lovely home, Christine! I love how you have mixed dark with light, contemporary with vintage, sleek with ethnic… It’s such a great example of how having eclectic interests can be pulled into a cohesive whole.

    I’m curious about your headboard behind your bed. Did you make that yourself? If so, did you document it somewhere or take pictures along the way? That would make a great tutorial!

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