Q&A with Designer Gloria Black

As Naples designer Gloria Black sees it, you can never have too much texture


Let’s dig right into it. What’s your approach when it comes to textures in interior design?

Give me all of them. There’s so much variation that you could never exhaust the options. Not only that, but texture gives you the option of completely transforming something by changing only one element, the material chosen. Imagine a high-gloss, lacquered hand-carved table. Then imagine that same exact table but make the texture a rough-hewn reclaimed hardwood with a matte finish. It’s night and day!

What are some of the materials you like to work with and why?

Wood is one of my absolute favorites. There’s so much you can do with it, from flooring to moldings, doors, cabinetry, furniture, beams, columns… You can stain it, paint it, leave it untreated, burn it, wire-brush it, the list goes on. It feels amazing under feet, and it absorbs sound and impact. I’m also obsessed with stone. You can have the most jagged of stones on the exterior of a magnificent building and that same stone could be cut and polished to be a gorgeous stone floor inside.

Are there any rules you follow when it comes to textures?

When it comes to floors, I’m adamant that what’s being used is going to be appropriate for the environment. It really irks me when I see a super smooth tile in an area that really should have some texture for safety. Some designers don’t think about those things when they’re making selections. They choose based on looks only, and once it’s been installed, they don’t realize they’re headed for disaster. 

What do you prefer in terms of fabrics?

I love a fuzzy item, so whenever I can implement some bouclé, faux fur, or sheepskin I do it because it makes a space immediately cozy.

Are there any you stay away from?

If it’s scratchy, count me out. Some textiles, while beautiful, aren’t worth their unpleasant texture. 

What are your thoughts on area rugs?

I am 100 percent for them. Not only do they add comfort, but they’re great for sound absorption too.

What’s your approach to surfaces and textures in the bedroom?

The rugs, mattress, pillows, bedding, and drapery are the most important items. They must be supportive, yet soft and inviting to enhance rest and relaxation. 

How do you feel about patterns?

I am all for them if they are done correctly and don’t fight each other. Typically, there must be at least one element of commonality between different patterns for them to work together. Otherwise, it’s a visual mess.

What textures do you like to surround yourself with at your own home?

I love nice, thick area rugs to add comfort, aesthetics, and ergonomics. And everything in my house is pet-friendly since home isn’t home without my furry assistants by my side. 

Story Credits:


Text by Christopher Day

Interior Photography by Daniel Newcomb

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