Thursday, 10 February 2011

A trip to Nyon near Geneva

On a retrun trip to Geneva, I took the train one stop to Nyon to meet a friend - we had plans to visit a Wallpaper Exhibition, housed in the Musee National Suisse - the beautiful Chateau de Prangins.
Chateau de Prangins
View from Chateau de Prangins
  In 1972, when Chateau de Prangins was handed over to the Swiss Confederation for restoration and transformation into the home of the Swiss National Museum. Its interior revealed 30 out of 40 rooms decorated with wallpaper. On recommendation, at least 100 motifs dating from the mid-eighteenth century right up to the 1930's were preserved - and some of these we saw today.

View from Chateau de Prangins

Wallpaper had its origins in England, documented from the end of the 17th century and around 1750 it arrived on the continent where it became hugely popular.  After originally copying English papers, French producers rapidly surpassed them, and at one stage came to dominate from the 1770's onwards.
The first use to which printed paper was put was to line boxes, chests, fire screens or the insides of furniture.

Vintage wallpaper

Vintage trunk lined with 1930's wallpaper
These techniques have become popular again recently, just as wallpapering walls themselves drift in and out of fashion and the idea for papering furniture 'interiors' has inspired me to finish off some of my vintage pieces in this way.
Trunks that I am restoring - some already lined and also small pieces of furniture such as tallboys, bedside cabinets, shelves etc will soon be making there way onto the website.
I will be busy on my return home bringing my newly acquired vintage pieces back to life, with the added technique of using a little bit of history and nostalgia to give each piece its own unique charm.

La Clemence Cafe Geneva