A certain global textile has been dotting stylish homes for years now, and if you’re anything like us, you’ve had zero clue what to call it. Friends, meet mudcloth.

Most commonly ivory-toned with delicate black geometric patterns, mudcloth, or bogolanfini, is an ancient Malian textile (dating back to the 12th century). Traditionally, it involves coarse, hand-spun cotton strips going through a long series of dyeing processes—first in a bath with leaves and branches, then numerous dye cycles in fermented mud (hence the name)—to achieve minimalist, symbolic designs.

Neutral yet punchy, mudcloth-inspired textiles are a wonderful choice for the pattern-shy and pattern enthusiast alike, and it works everywhere from shower curtains to hamper liners to accent pillows.

Love the look? Learn more about the origins of mudcloth here, then get inspired to incorporate it into your own home.

 

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In America, mudcloth is most popularly used as a decorative case for throw pillows.

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Authentic mudcloth tapestries also make a gorgeous addition to the bedroom.

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As well as a striking (and durable) upholstery choice.

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We love the look in a gender-neutral nursery.

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And it reads extra rich when layered in with contemporary linens and shiboris.

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Even when DIY'd, the look is both stylish and storied. Who wants to go shopping?

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