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My name is Gerrie Wydeven doing-business-as Wydeven Designs. I have been conducting this small GREEN business since 2004. Wydeven Designs, based in the Atlanta, Georgia area, sells CHAIRS, LOVESEATS, CHAISES, SETTEES and other fine, well-constructed refurbished upholstered pieces. I love to travel, cook, take photographs and generally follow style and decor topics as well!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Decorator Fabric Series - Toile de Jouy

Blue and White Toile
Brown and Cream Toile
This is the fifth installation in this series about fabric patterns.  It discusses Toile de Jouy fabrics which are usually cottons or cotton blends and are printed rather than woven.  I love this fabric and get very excited if I can find it at a good price - it is that popular and never seems to go out of style.  I have had a set of blue and cream club chairs and ottoman for a long time (and also have a bathroom wallpapered in a green and white toile).   The fabric works well on all size pieces but I do try to use it on pieces that show the patterns - often scenes - the best.  I have passed up really large patterns as well as really small ones - the scale is important.   This is also a pattern that can stand the test of time - a little fading only renders it more authentic.  

I researched for a little history and found the following:

In 1760 Christophe-Philippe Oberkampf established a factory in Jouy-en-Josas printing French toile fabrics of superb quality with dye fast colors. By 1805 it sprawled over 14 hectares with over 1300 workers, becoming the most important factory in Europe.

In the beginning, the factory printed woodblock polychrome cottons mainly in botanical and fruit designs, to be used for clothing and some soft furnishing. These fine examples, called Toile de Jouy, simply meaning 'cloth from Jouy', became the most quintessential of French fabrics.
The famous landscape monochromes were printed with figures in pastoral scenes, hunting scenes, chinoiserie, military triumphs, antique follies, and farm life, depicting vignettes of general life in the 18th and 19th century.
At first these French fabric designs seem rather simple with a limited color palette either in red, blue, violet and brown amongst a few others, printed on a white or cream background. However simple they may look, the art and technique were masterful, almost giving a 3D effect.
Toiles are still produced at present and whether reproduction prints, or modern twists, they are as popular today as they were over 200 years ago. Other countries and factories in France produced similar toiles, but to this day the name that remains is 'Toile de Jouy'.
Blue and White Toile

Brown and Teal Toile

Red and Cream Toile

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