Yacht Design from the Experts

Perennials Fabrics and Rugs blur the lines of indoor and outdoor design. Similarly, yacht design also requires a blurring of this line. Designers must take in a variety of factors when it comes to yacht design, including the elements, on-the-water activities, and travel. Yachts and superyachts are no ordinary projects. Discover how designers work around waves, water, and wine spills.

Perennials Fabrics was born out of a need for luxurious soft performance fabrics in a space where only marine-grade textiles existed. As purveyors of outdoor furniture and yachting aficionados, David and Ann Sutherland desired textiles that competed with interior fabrics in terms of comfort and appearance. Enter Perennials. The Sutherland’s recently refurbished their yacht, All Inn, and it comes as no surprise that Perennials fabrics and rugs are featured heavily in the redesign. In their July/August issue, Veranda featured the All Inn as a premier entertaining space. Considering David and Ann’s favorite past time is hosting friends and family, it is the perfect marriage of design and lifestyle.

Though yachting is a year-round hobby, something about summer screams WATER. Curious about the ins and outs of yacht design? Keep reading to learn the intricacies of life and style on the high seas.

Perennials is performance that doesn’t look like plastic or slick and shiny. Very chic.

Design with Purpose

When concepting interior and exterior yacht areas, designers must consider the purpose of the space – not unlike a home. Will the deck be used for post-water-toy-fun lounging? Upholster chaises and lounge chairs in a cozy (yet water-friendly) boucle like In the Loop. Does the client have an interior kid-friendly game room? Cover a sectional in an abrasion-resistant soft fabric like Wit’s End.

Blue Moon Lounge

On the All Inn, Ann explains her fabrics choices: “We used Touchy Feely on the Flybridge Blue Moon Bar Banquette and it is absolutely gorgeous, saturated blue color, soft and cozy and dressy looking. For other lounge areas, Homespun provided unique texture and subtle color combinations to be interesting – as well as natural looking.”

Design to Withstand the Elements

When choosing furnishings, materials, and fabrics for a yacht, designers must keep in mind wind, water, and salt. Which is to say, performance is key! In terms of furniture, David Sutherland recommends Mariner Chairs (shown in the lead image of this article) with 316 stainless steel that combats sea salt erosion. Also, the sturdy frames resist toppling over in rough waters.

Perennials fabrics and rugs also resist the elements as they are UV, mildew and abrasion resistant, pivotal for marine environments. When asked about prioritizing performance over design, Ann Sutherland explains, “I would say performance is the main requirement, but on a luxury private yacht the interiors must be impeccable and stylish.  A lifestyle must be suggestive of elegance and comfort.” Performance also comes into play should the wind pick up and a wine glass crashes. No need to fret with a Perennials-covered dining chair. Just bleach it!

All Inn Interior Dining Room

Design Smart Interiors

No matter how big a yacht is, interior space is always lacking. Designers treat every interior square inch with care. Creating stealth storage solutions is key, as well as utilizing furnishings that don’t overcrowd a room. Yacht designers also recommend featuring neutral or light hues in a space to make it seem more open. David Sutherland mentions the All Inn is “lighter, brighter, and more carefree” than their Dallas home.

Interiors are critical when storms hit. A well-designed game room allows for dry family fun. Toddler tantrums and wine-fueled dance parties are welcome with cozy durable fabrics.

All Inn Game Room

It’s colorful and attuned toward the watery environment, much more like a vacation retreat.

For entertaining tips from David and Ann, including favorite cocktails and on-the-water activities, check out Veranda’s article featuring the All Inn sailing through St. Lucia!

Browse Yacht Fabrics!
White sands
Touchy Feely
Hello, sailor!
Big sky
In The Loop
Sea salt