September 24, 2012

Chinoiserie Chic

Fashionistas and decoristas love it!

Chinoiserie is a french term used to describe an eastern influence on decoration.  This style entered the European scene in the mid 17th century when French Kings adorned their country homes with it.   Today with an ever-increasing trend towards globalization it has become fashionably chic to include it in our homes.  It has been used on porcelain, wallpapers and fabrics, furniture and gardens.  Motifs include garden scenery, human figures, pagodas, intricate lattices, exotic birds and flowers.

Over the centuries many well appointed rooms have included at least touches of it.

The October 2012 issue of Architectural Digest which features the homes of ‘Fashion Insiders’ is a great example of this style.  Though Valentino’s French estate is over the top Asian in feel, a more imaginable  example might be Marc Jacobs president Robert Duffy’s Greenwich village townhouse.  His library features a beautiful hand-painted chinoiserie wall mural.  And mixed with what seems like a raw silk on the windows….the result is gorgeous:  exotic but understated.


Library featuring a hand-painted chinoiserie wall mural via Architectural Digest

The interiors of the late iconic  Canadian decorator Ray Staples always had a flair for the exotic.  Elements of surprise was her trademark.  She mixed styles and colours like no other, always balancing it for a timeless look.  In the October issue of Style at Home magazine a home that Ray did 30 years ago was featured as a tribute to her.    Though I’m sure it was re-styled for the photo shoot, the bones of it remain the same and still beautiful all these years.  The grass cloth and chinese chippendale chairs have survived the test of time – as a well-appointed room should.


Room by Canadian design icon Ray Staples

In a recent project by Lumar Interiors, the dining room walls were painted with a delicate chinoiserie mural by the talented Anthony Valin.  We incorporated branches, flowers and birds in the design.  The blue/white porcelain was also used in the room to add to the chinoiserie chic feeling.

For more information on how we can incorporate some ‘Chinoiserie Chic’ into your home, please give us a call to discuss or [email protected]

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