February 27, 2012

Monday's Lesson: Pattern 101 Toile vs Chinoiserie

Often these two terms are confused and used in place of each other, yet they couldn’t be more different. One is a traditional French pattern, and the other - not really a pattern at all, rather an all-encompassing style, and personally one of my favourites!

So, let’s get my least favourite out of the way first. Now I say least favourite because it’s not my cup of tea, I find it overcomplicated, fluffy, feminine and often used way too much in one room. However, with the slowly passing [thank god!] shabby chic/French revolution, more than a handful of you will love it.

Toile de Jouy or Toile made its first appearances in the 18th century and is a French word meaning linen cloth or canvas, in particular cloth for painting on from the north central French town of Jouy-en-Josas. Following the popularity of Indian printed cottons in the century prior, French monarchy decided to create their own using the same wood block techniques, instead depicting complicated French countryside images, and hence Toile was born.

I did say Toile wasn't one of my favourites but maybe this room is an exception? I love the piping highlighting the line of the bedhead and also the trim around the bedspread and valance.
See what I said about using it too much in one room?
Love the combination of pattern and also the use of the floor lamp as a bedside light.

Kravet Woodbury Guinevere Festival Toile.
Duralee Sunderland Collection Print Toile.

Kravet Barrymore Linen Toile - my favourite!
Christian Fischbacher Liaison [contemporary, modern Toile interpretation]

Chinoiserie meaning “Chinese-esque”, is also a French term and refers to the reoccurring theme of Chinese influences in European artworks as early as the 17th century. Traditionally depicting themes of an imaginary China, today Chinoiserie encapsulates everything Chinese from pagodas, to ginger jars and dragons.

I love Chinoiserie! From the symmetry in the patterns; the story telling quality of others; the colour; the traditionally muted and tonally elegant, to the modern vibrant and fun interpretations.

Absolutely love! Only amendment would have been to have my FAVOURITE Chippendale chairs.
Chippendale Chair.

See what I mean about 'story telling' quality - the guy in the middle of the chair back is waving his hands around in the air about something!

Love the pattern and the colour but a little bit too much for me on the shape of this headboard. 

Just a little touch.

Stunning Thibaut Chinoiserie, love the skirted dining chair.

Tobi Fairley Interior http://tobifairley.com/blog/ using Schumacher Nanjing Fabric in Jade.
Robert Allen Crystal Lake Chinoiserie.
Schumacher Chaing Mai Dragon.
Chinoiserie is an amazing style and one that can be incorporated in small or large elements within the home through furniture, fabric, wallpaper or décor. If you want to see other ways to incorporate the look Beth Connolly of http://chinoiseriechic.blogspot.com.au/ has dedicated her blog to the style.

If you’re interested in more ways to incorporate Toile into your decorating or wanting to capture more of the Chinoiserie theme, check out my Pinterest board http://pinterest.com/bobbinscissors/pattern-101-toile-v-s-chinoiserie/

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