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de Gournay wallpaper

I've admired de Gournay wallpaper in design magazines for many years but I've recently seen wallpaper dating back to the mid 1800s that would have inspired de Gournay's more recent designs.   I have a new client who lives in a gorgeous historic home on Maryland's eastern shore who has this wallpaper in her stairwell.  

I immediately wanted to do some research on de Gournay and their products.  According to Lifeloveandluxury blog, de Gournay had an interesting beginning.   Claud Cecil Gurney needed to restore antique wallpaper in his family home which led him to research the history and techniques used by the Chinese to paint on paper and silk.  Creating designs inspired by historic 18th century Chinoiserie designs, artists in China and Gurney resurrected the art of handpainted wallpaper in 1986.  

The luxurious wallpaper can be found in high end hotels and boutiques and homes of the rich and famous.  According the CreativeHunt blog, most of the wallpapers are customized to client's specifications.  One client wanted vast vistas of ancient Italy to be modified with portraits of his family.

Traditional Home

The wallpaper is found in many dining rooms but also a popular choice in bathrooms.

Traditional Home

Traditional Home

I can understand using it in a powder room but I'm surprised to see tubs next to the wallpaper.

Various materials are used such as silk, India tea paper or Xuan rice paper.  The wallpaper is treated with traditional pork bone glue (like it was done 300 years ago) before its spends about five weeks being dyed or gilded with gold leaf.  Then details are hand-painted on and mimic the traditional block print style that used large blocks of wood that were carved and stamped onto the papers in the 18th century.

After taking around five weeks to hand paint, the wallpapers are ready for hanging which are usually managed by de Gournay professional fitters.  From start to finish an installation can take six months.

The wallpaper is a popular choice in bedrooms.

Canadian House and Home

I found just a few interiors where the wallpaper is used in living rooms.

I recent article by Elle Decor featuring a project by Kelly Wearstler who used the wallpaper in this sitting room.  Kelly Wearstler always inspires to think outside the box.

To make it more affordable, panels can be ordered and framed.

de Gournay wallpaper was used on a screen in this living room.

The wallpaper is also a popular choice in entries.

Traditional Home

Traditional Home

House Beautiful

The book cover of a popular design book, Domino The Book of Decorating, is inspired by a De Gournay design.

Their gorgeous designs can also be handpainted on drapery, blinds, and upholstery fabric.  Below is a de Gournay painting installed in a hotel designed by Kelly Wearstler.

Canadian House and Home

Below, de Gournay fabric is used for drapery.


Wouldn't it be fun to be at the Olympics in London right now and be able to stop by De Gournay's pretty shop in between events... 


Blog Anniversary and My New Office

Time flies when you are having fun!  I can't believe two years has past since my first post on a favorite local designer, Darryl Carter.   I originally started my blog to share inspiration for my design business but it has turned into so much more.  My blog has lead me to meet some wonderful people and work on some great projects.  But, most importantly, I want to thank everyone who reads my blog on a regular basis.  Your support and encouragement is what makes this adventure the most special.

I want to mention that I've been updating my Facebook page with lots of current project photos that you can check out here.  If you want to see real time updates, "Like" my page while you're visiting.

I thought this would be a good time to share pictures of my new office.  I've been working in an "un-inspirational" space for far too long (which you can see here) and just thrilled to have a new office.

I've been saving the image below of Suzanne Kasler's office for some time.  Like her office, I wanted my office not to have much color so fabrics and finishes for client projects would stand out.  I did paint my walls in Ben Moore's Clay Beige for some contrast with the trim and doors.   It's a great color that can read either warm or cool making it so versatile.

You can see the space has changed a ton.

I love my new work table, pendant light and stools.

One more before picture.

Here are fabrics for a current project that is in the works for a gorgeous historic home on the eastern shore (more on that later).

Here's a closer look at the rope railing and under stair storage.

The storage is perfect for my Hunter Douglas samples and much more.

I enjoy seeing my folk art block prints by Bonnie Murray every time I walk down the stairs.  I picked these up on a family vacation in Duck, NC at the Greenleaf Gallery.  They are a wonderful reminder of family vacations.  Below is a close up of the rope railing made from hemp.  

For now my fabric books had to go back on my old book cases.

My new white parson book shelves are due in next month.

Here's another shot of Suzanne Kasler's office.  I liked how she used baskets to organize her fabrics.

My fabrics are now organized in a similar fashion.  These baskets contain some my all time favorites from the Washington Design Center.

My new books shelves hold design books, reference books, and tons of furniture, lighting, accessory, and plumbing fixture trade catalogs (not pictured because not as pretty to look at).  It's feels great to be so organized.

And lastly, my inspiration board which changes weekly.

Thanks for stopping by and have a great week!