Fortuny painting at his easel
When people think of Fortuny they seem to always mention his fabrics but did you know before the fabrics Mariano Fortuny was already a painter, etcher, sculptor and photographer. He was also a lighting engineer, an inventor, a theatre director, a set designer, an architect and finally a creator of exquisite fabrics and clothes. He manufactured his own dyes and pigments according to ancient methods of early masters. It was due to his love of the theater that Fortuny went on, in our time, to become one of the best-known textile designers.
Traditional Home, February/March 2012
It’s hard to pick up a magazine these days and not see Fortuny fabric either covering a piece of furniture or turned into a pillow. A lot of his fabrics have names, named for people or places he had known and visited. The blue, silvery gold fabric covering the chair and pillows is called “Campanelle” a morning glory motif named after a 17th century Italian design.
Do you notice the flower stalk emerging from an urn, the morning glories emanating around?
Suzanne Kasler's Home, Architectural Digest
Suzanne Kasler uses Fortuny’s fabrics throughout her home, in her living she used Fortuny’s “Serves” pattern in brilliant blue and silvery gold on her sofa pillows. The “Serves” pattern is a tradition 17th century Italian style named after a Rembrandt painting.
Suzanne Kasler's bedroom, Architectural Digest
In her bedroom on the bench and bed pillow she used Fortuny’s “Delfino” pattern, a 17th century French design, in string and silvery gold color.
Charlotte Moss' library, Veranda, November
A pillow in “Impero” design, a formal 19th century French Empire motif, in sienna on parchment sits in Charlotte Moss’ library. (It’s the small middle pillow that looks coppery.)
Design by Michael S. Smith
The chairs that flank the fireplace Michael Smith used “Carnavalet” fabric in brown and gold museum cloth, a 17th century design named for a famous Paris museum.
Design by Michael S. Smith
For this pair of gilt-wood chairs he used “Piumette” pattern, a 15th century Persian design with a small feather motif in pink, aquamarine and gold.
All of these fabrics are available today through the trade or you can scout places like ebay or ruby lane if you’re only looking for enough to make a pillow or two. Keep in mind the cost can vary greatly depending on fabric, age, color and design, Fortuny is not just Fortuny. New Fortuny typically runs around $400 per yard while vintage Fortuny can cost in the thousands and don't get me started on silk velvet Fortuny.
Umbellas at Bergdorf Goodman
If you aren’t a seamstress but like the patterns you can always pick up an umbrella sold through Bergdorf Goodman and are you ready for the price…a mere $450! I’ve seen these and I have to say they’re gorgeous.
L'Objet Fortuny dishes seen in Architectural Digest
Today Fortuny patterns are being recreated on everything including fine dinnerware from L'objet but be forewarned even a simple dessert plate is $250 but wouldn’t you enjoy your sweet more?
Display at Bergdorf Goodman, Photo by Steve Freihon
For those of you who are trying to find their own pattern name or just want to browse more of Fortuny’s patterns there’s a wonderful Fortuny directory located on my best friends website at Olde World Pillows .
I’ve shown you new Fortuny fabrics, accessories and dinnerware but up next is my Fortuny, old Fortuny, discontinued patterns and silk velvet. And I have a surprise that I’ve been dying to share with everyone so stay tuned…….
Have a fabulous week and don’t forget to stop and smell a few springtime roses for me!