Beauty is skin deep: latest trend in interiors

From aged finishes to shimmering metallics it's what on the surface that counts this season, says Trish Lorenz

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The Independent Online

Floors, walls, even ceilings: forget a simple coat of emulsion, the latest trend in interiors is to add depth and interest to the surfaces in your home by covering them in textural materials.

The Surface Design Show ( is a specialist trade show that takes place in London next week. According to the trend report released by the show, this year will see us embracing textured finishes: surfaces have moved from smooth and flawless to tactile, quilted and distressed.

"Architects and designers are tiring of traditional matt, smooth finishes. We expect to see lots of quilted-effect 3D surfaces and intricate, shimmering filigree patterns this year," says the report.

To get the look at home try faking it. There are a wide range of surface finishes on the market that aren't as they seem: tiles that look like wood, wallpaper that resembles feathers and snakeskin- effect kitchen splashbacks. Try Trend ( or Galerie ( for a good selection.

Vintage is still in vogue, too, and rough, aged finishes also work this trend. Aim for a distressed look with ageing wood in soft colours. Textural surfaces such as cork add warmth and irregular finishes such as mismatched tiles give visual interest.

Luxurious touches such as metallic tiles, shimmering animal skin wallpapers and beautifully soft leather flooring, are also increasingly popular. "Despite, or maybe because of the current period of austerity, trends for 2013 are all about a desire for excitement, luxury and the unusual," says the report.

For this modern take on bling, choose unusual luxury materials such as mother of pearl tiles ( and leather flooring in shimmering finishes (try, which has an eco-friendly recycled leather range) and use with strong, bright colours.