In today’s edition of “Arlyn, I think *this* is a thing now” and Arlyn giving me a kind but deliberate “prove it” look,” I am talking about… travertine. Now, for some reason when I hear that word, I instantly think, “nope. Not for me.” Maybe it’s because it was so overused in the early to mid-2000s? Maybe it’s too beige (and historically not the good kind)? Regardless, I didn’t have a clear enough reason for why I felt this way. In an effort to help me figure out my personal dislike of the material, I took it to the streets. And by streets, I mean, the office. I took a poll at work and asked what was the first thing that came to mind when I said travertine. Words like suburban, McMansion and faux rustic summed up all of the responses. And that was exactly it. So many homes have used it an effort to look “expensive” or to make their new build feel like a “Tuscan villa.” It felt showy and not special…until now. Example A (shown above): The dining table in the new Kelly Wearstler-designed Proper Hotel in Santa Monica, California. Hi beautiful. 😉
Now this was the first photo (above) I saw that made me think, “huh, is travertine A THING that the cool kids are using now?” The answer over a short period of time became yes. I started seeing it a ton. I dare you to look at an international (definitely Australian) interiors site and not spot some cool travertine moments.
What I think has made me ease into kinda loving this “suburban co-opted” stone is that many artists and designers are using it sparingly. Take this incredible console above for instance. It’s not being used everywhere in the home. Just one awesome feature. Even Sarah Sherman Samuel used it for one of her fireplace surrounds in her stunning new home.
What I also love that is happening, is that raw/rough travertine is being used as an accent like the walls in this Rodolphe Parente design. Granted, it’s probably not a material for the average person’s home but it really helps to give a very quiet but powerful texture in an already ultra-cool and colorful room.
No, typically I’m not a huge fan of the whole room look BUT these two beauties are where I say, “hell, yes” to travertine being used in a larger scale. Why? These two bathrooms have a much lighter and softer patterned stone. They look like art that greets you with a polite “hello and yes I know I’m beautiful,” as opposed to, “HEY I’M HERE.”
If you need more proof that travertine is happening and very cool, feast your eyes on six beautiful photos of products that are on the market. If you are thinking that dining table looks like it’s from Anthropologie…it is and it’s awesome. My favorite, of course, is that heart-stopping side table that I will own once I make millions of dollars. Mark. my. words. I think one of those very chic objects will suffice for now. 🙂
So here I leave you with one of the most gorgeous travertine staircases I’ve ever seen. Consider it a mic drop on this conversion.
Expect wait! Just kidding. I’m passing the mic to you. I want to hear your thoughts. Have you always loved travertine and are happy to see its new and improved look? Would you ever use it in your home? Do you think this 2019 design trend has 2020 lasting power? Let’s talk.
Love you, mean it.