Woven Wood Shadesby Karla Nielson for DWC Magazine
The families of grasses that are used for woven products and are similar to wood include grasscloth woven textiles (and their polyester faux partners) and the bamboo genre, which is categorized with wood, but is technically a grass.
Bamboo is a common name for 60 genera and 1,000 species in the grass or Poaceae family, a family of monocots-the perennial, woody, usually shrubby or treelike plants of the grass family. The different species of bamboo range in height from the smallest at six inches to the giant variety at 130 feet.
Bamboo has more than 1,500 documented uses and can be found in North America, South America, Africa, Australia and southern Asia with the highest diversity in China. In America, bamboo products are used for flooring, furniture and accessories, and for blinds or shades and most recently as a shutter material.
A highly renewable resource, bamboo is fast-growing; depending on the species, the stems, called culms, can grow up to a foot a day with a lifecycle that is highly productive. Thus bamboo is emerging as a highly favored and desirable material for the environmentally aware future of interior design products.
Although young bamboo can be harvested and eaten as vegetables, in four years time the culms, or hollow internodes, will become more woody and composed less of water.
WOVEN WOOD PRODUCTS
Woven wood products have increased dramatically in popularity over the last several years. Woven wood products, whether of wood, bamboo, grasses or polymers, offer the consumer the warmth of wood tones, a depth of color palette and the richness and variations in the surface. In some products these characteristics offer a naturalness that is deeply pleasing and easy to live with.
Woven wood products can filter daylight, assuring daytime privacy and are often sheer in appearance-even gossamer-like and mystically intriguing. They can be lined for nighttime privacy. Most treatments operate as cloth shades and combined with a general style direction of Oriental influence, which is very mainstream today, woven wood products are a natural choice for many interiors.