Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Jansen's Curtain Border Interpretation

When I first glanced at the beautiful book "Jansen" by James Archer Abbott, with it's striking red jacket, I found it compelling. Then, on page 219, I saw a beautiful drawing of a window treatment for the bedroom of Mr. & Mrs. Charles Allen Jr. The simple but graphic border along with the beautifully articulated valence, soft blue gray color against the black background just captured me. Needless to say I bought the book.

Within hours, I set out to capture the essence of that design using satin stitches on a Rogers & Goffigon wool sateen. Technically, I think I did a proper job, but I did not catch the pattern's romance in my first attempt. I put the sample away and moved on to orders.

Recently, Interior Designer Suzanne Rheinstein approached me about interpreting the pattern for curtains in her New York home. This time I took a different approach. The fabric ground is a handsome platinum colored silk from her own collection designed for Lee Jofa. For the image, I custom dyed a rayon chenille in a dark taupe and using the hand guided Cornelly machine applied the chenille and finished using chain stitch. The finished embroidery is finished above along with a detail for closer inspection.

The chapter on the Allen residence does not show the master bedroom and I am not sure if the curtain treatment was ever made but Suzanne tells me that she loves her curtains which makes me very happy indeed.

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