Visual inspiration from designs of yore can come from fine antiques or items just a few decades old. While vintage furniture and other collectables allow the easy establishment of retro style, real or reproduced textiles for curtains, upholstery and other decorating purposes can also do the trick. Reproduction Fabrics ( www.reproductionfabrics.com ) offers reproduced cloth designs from an amazing range of eras: the company lists categories that start with 1775-1825 through to various 20th-century periods. Many fabrics are for quiltmakers, but several, such as oilcloth (below left) and barkcloth (below right), are suitable for decorating. Also available is the Tucson Fruit Tablecloth (US$30) with matching napkins (US$4.50 each). Revival Fabrics ( www.revivalfabrics.com ), on the other hand, deals strictly in vintage fabrics rather than reproductions. Highlights are barkcloth and linens from the 1920s to the 40s, as well as chenille bedspreads, including one adorned with large red flowers for US$295. Make Me! ( www.makemefabrics.com ) also carries original fabric, mainly from the 50s to the 70s, although some are older. Examples include Squiggle Diamond (50s; US$12 a yard), which features a diamond-shape motif formed by curvy lines, and Blue Egg (70s; US$10 a yard): egg-shaped dots on a cool blue background. Repro Depot ( www.reprodepot.com ) was originally dedicated to vintage fabrics, but has turned to new products because of the growing scarcity of older textiles. Some fabrics are reproductions of vintage designs while others are new prints inspired by retro themes. The Fabulous 50s section contains such gems as Boomerang barkcloth (US$12.95 a yard), a wacky 'modern art' geometric with the characteristic boomerang motif of the era, and 50s Formica (US$8.50 a yard), a design reminiscent of that once-ubiquitous countertop material. Contemporary cloth ( www.contemporarycloth.com ) carries vintage and reproduction fabrics. One highlight is Mod (US$25 a yard), an undeniably 60s concentric circle pattern available in bubblegum pink, cinnamon and lime. Also worth a try are Denver Fabrics (denverfabrics.com), which carries some retro-repro designs, including the aloha-style Tiki Party (US$38 a yard), and RetroOnline (retroonline.com), which has a few fabrics among their general selection of retro goods. All sellers will ship to Hong Kong.