Absolutely Fabulous !!!
Strong, bold, daring, adventurous, yet with a more than generous helping of sophistication - no, not me . . . mind you ??? I’m talking about the new collection of fabrics and wallpapers from Christian Lacroix. Entitled Paradis Barbares, and released as usual under the Designers Guild umbrella, it’s an utter showstopper !!!
I don’t usually devote an entire editorial to a single collection, but in this case . . . Wow !!!
Paradis Barbares is a beguiling and beautiful collection that pays tribute to Garouste and Bonetti, two prominent figures from the New Barbarians artistic movement who designed the original haute couture salon interiors and unique furniture pieces for Christian Lacroix, in the late 1980s.
The collection celebrates the natural harmonies, free forms and rhythms of a whimsical and spirited world, with curves and waves reminiscent of Jacques Couëlle’s architecture - all seen through the inimitable Maison Christian Lacroix eye. Extraordinary new textiles span printed designs, glamorous embroideries, luxurious weaves and chic voiles. Wallpapers feature incredible panoramic scenes, flocked and gravure printed designs in a variety of versatile colourways, printed on luxurious heavyweight grounds. Beautiful botanicals, structured patterns and exotic imagery just burst out of the pattern book, shrieking “Pick me, pick me !!!”
The first of these cloths, and well deserving its place as the front fabric in the book is Les Rosales, a rich and vivid floral in sublime tones of magenta and green with metallic thread highlights, beautifully embroidered onto abstract teal shapes, which in their turn are jacquard woven onto a black background. This moody fabric really gets the creative juices running, inviting – no, compelling - you to delve deeper into the collection.
The next fabric you encounter is Les Messagers, a series of abstract stamps in antique gilt metallic threads, creating a dramatic scene of butterflies against a black sateen ground. This jacquard woven fabric is truly statement Christian Lacroix. We have a wall of Lacroix butterfly paper in the showroom here at John Charles Interiors which, although from an older collection, still gets great comments – and of course orders.
Following these 2 beauties is a fabulous contemporary geometric bold scale check called L’entrelac. This jacquard design with satin bands works soooo well with Les Rosales and Les Messagers. While it would make great curtains, blinds, cushions or bed throws, I’d LOVE to use it as a large, statement headboard.
Continuing the geometric theme, L’aveu is a shaded geometric jacquard weave in tones of undulating colour, with a soft and luxurious shimmer.
Botanicals feature highly in this collection, all of which come as seen through the eyes of the Maison Christian Lacroix team. In Cueillette, dream-like forest leaves and ferns create an enchanting botanical print in rich, tonal shades set against pure white, digitally printed onto a soft cotton satin ground. Cueillette Soft has the same design in lush deep shades of green, digitally woven onto a rich dark velvet ground.
The Cueillette design features heavily in the Paradis Barbares wallpapers, but in a really clever way. The main design comes in 4 colourways, 2 of which are on metallic foil backgrounds. In L’Eden the motif is re-interpreted in a simple tone on tone design, some of the 7 colourways featuring a crackle effect metallic print, while in L’Eden Soft the design is reversed, and heavily flocked in black onto a choice of 3 metallic backgrounds.
Les Messagers, the butterfly block print (those of you with small people may be reminded of a potato print – but an extremely sophisticated one) is just as lovely in its 6 wallpaper shades as it is in a fabric.
In Les Centaurées, available as both a fabric and a paper, thistle motifs are layered together with a stamped effect texture, combining hints of metallics with delightful shades of colour to glorious effect.
If show-stopping panoramic wall panels are your bag (as they certainly are mine !!!) and you’ve got a wall going begging in a dining room or hall, you’d go a long way to beat the magnificent Bois Paradis. This extraordinary digitally printed wall panel is an illustrative and bountiful vision of the natural world, with exotic creatures and forest trees in silhouette form.
I’ll stop banging on now – trying to put into words what you really have to see and touch to fully appreciate. Save to say, we of course have the collection in our showroom, and would be pleased to enthuse about it with you. Who knows, if you wax lyrical enough we might even put the kettle on.
John Biddell, John Charles Interiors
Live 24 7 magazine editorial - March 2019