Turning the Table. Daisy Hill Linens gives passementerie-the making of elaborate trims and edgings-new meaning with its round Chinese placemat that transforms a simple supper into a special occasion. 14″. $78. The Lion’s Paw, Nantucket, (508) 228-3837, thelionspawnantucket.com
Window Dressing. A modern take on the traditional drapery tieback, Sahco’s twisted metal chain would have done Mademoiselle Chanel proud. $233. Donghia, Boston Design Center, (617) 574-9292, donghia.com
Finishing Touch. The Harbor Crown Knot Frog, from Samuel & Sons Passementerie, was inspired by nautical regalia. It can be used at the top of a pleat on a skirted sofa or as an ornament on a pillow or throw. Shown here in Lobster, it’s available in nine colorways. 4″W. $30. The Martin Group, Boston Design Center, (617) 951-2526, martingroupinc.com
Cable Knit. This handwoven wool carpet with its assorted stitches fits as comfortably as a favorite sweater. It helps to create a room that is warm, welcoming, and sophisticated. Custom sizes. $78.75/sq. ft. Steven King Decorative Carpets, Boston Design Center, (617) 426-3302, stevenkinginc.com
With a Twist… and a tassel and a bow, this circa-1840 mirror with a gilded, carved wood frame is a stunner. 45½″H × 20½″W x 6½″D. $7,400. Susan Silver Antiques, Sheffield, Mass., (413) 229-8169, susansilverantiques.com
Opposites Attract. Macramé meets high-tech in the Knotted Chair by Marcel Wanders for Droog. The chair is made from carbon, aramid fiber, and epoxy. 21″W × 27¼″H x 25¼″D. $4,184. Montage, Boston, (617) 451-9400, montageweb.com
Tying the Knot. Paris-based Tisserant Art & Style has been crafting fine bronze lighting, like this aptly named Cordage sconce in gilded bronze, since the height of the Art Deco period. 15.7″H × 14.6″W. $7,085. Charles Spada, Boston Design Center, (617) 204-9270, charlesspada.com
Knock Knot. For more than a decade, Hardware Renaissance has created hand-forged iron and bronze hardware in a responsible way. The company strives to use minimal energy resources, and creates patinas that are environmentally friendly, like the hand-applied hot-wax finish of this knotted iron door knocker. 6″H × 4″W. $293. Brassworks, Providence, (401) 421-5815, finehomedetails.com
Braid Brigade. In its shop in Woodbury, Connecticut, York Studio creates finely crafted furniture and accessories for the home, including a line of braided handles and drawer pulls, like the pewter handle shown here. 35⁄8″L. $52. Raybern Hardware, Charlestown, Mass., (617) 666-3000, raybernhardware.com
We don’t know why it is that, at a particular time, for no apparent reason, certain things become part of design’s zeitgeist. Why, for instance, at a given moment, does everything seem to be dip-dyed or waxed or distressed? Or why does brass suddenly become the new stainless steel? And why, to those of us who care about such things, does it—whatever it is at the moment—look so good?
The latest attraction, the thing that feels “right,” has more than a few references to rope. Fabric, metal, raffia, and thread have been twisted, braided, knotted, and tied to create objects that have real strength—tensile and decorative—and seem to be on many a design aficionado’s most-wanted list these days.