Monday, February 6, 2012

Everything Old is New Again!

Elle Decor, December 2011

Now for something near and dear to me TEXTILES! Have you ever come across a fabric design that somehow just looks old? Well chances are it is and lately I’ve been seeing a lot of old patterns rediscovered and modernized for today’s fabric lines. The velvet on the dining room chairs above is such a fabric taken from a 300 year old Turkish Ottoman design. The flowers in the middle of the backs are stylized carnations and symbolize the heavenly gardens of paradise.  

Velvet yastik, Turkey, 16-17th Century

Last year House Beautiful featured new fabrics that are coming out with ancient Ottoman designs.

Silk velvet fabric, Falk Manor by Scalamandre

Scalamandre one of the America’s leading fabric producers has one of the largest textile archives in the world spanning several centuries and even has their own museum for them. One of the fabrics they produce is the one above they call Falk Manor. Fortuny even used this pattern in the 1920’s and called it his climbing leaf motif, taken from a 15th century Italian renaissance design. (Yes, the pillows below are mine and for sale if you’re interested)

My image of Fortuny pillows

Traditional Home, November 2011

See the chair with its back almost to us with the blue cut velvet on it that design was taken from the 15th century as well. While my fragment below is on a linen ground I’m guessing the fabric on the chair has a cotton ground for more strength, linen stretches. My fragment has the silk velvet outlined in a tiny metal cord something that would be to costly today let alone the comfort factor.  

My Image
Traditional Home, November 2011

I tried to see if I could get that chair closer so you could see the fabric, trust me it’s to die for but I wish I knew who made it…does anyone know?

Even Diane von Furstenberg is using 17th century Italian designs for her line of rugs. Designers don’t copy the designs of anything exactly no matter how old since copyright laws still come into play and you never know who might own a certain design. It’s simple enough to get around all you really have to do is change a dime size part of the design and it’s considered new.

Italian, 17th century design

I could show you this stuff all day long since it’s my passion but I need to get back to work. It’s amazing how many old patterns I see everyday in new designs. Like they say: “everything old is new again”!



Julie Khuu | Haute Khuuture said...

History always repeats itself! Love the look of classic Ottoman prints paired with something chic and modern...can you imagine these prints with a shot of neon! Updated to fit today's style and this collection!

Peace. Love. LOL!


An Urban Cottage said...

They're all beautiful. And that top room is really sexy.

A room with a view said...

I love the colors in Falk and luxurious. Old patterns have so much history and add character to any piece.

The enchanted home said...

Wow Debra all so beautiful. Falk Manor is one of my all time favorites, had a chair done in it for my old house and am determined to use it again, hopefully for my dining room...its exquisite in every color. Nothing like old textiles or new ones that have that timeless classic old world look!

michele said...

i didn't know they had to be careful about copyright for rug design. in the fashion industry, there is no copyright. which is why prada will find a jacket at a thrift store, love it, and copy it exactly and that's perfectly okay because of the law.

that blue velvety piece is incredible.


Karena said...

That first room is stunning! I also really love your Fortuny pillows Debra! The antique patterns are really wonderful!


Art by Karena

Splendid Sass said...

Oh, so much beauty here! I love the patterns, colors, and textures! I have to have the black and gray!
Have a nice day, and thank you for sharing.

Splendid Willow said...

Debra, you really are the queen of fantastic fabrics! You have a really good eye and your passion shines through! I like that about you! + I learn something new when I visit.

It took me a while, but now I am a subscriber.

Happy Monday!


Nella Miller said...

Debra, very informative, and gorgeous fabrics. I am noticing more of a European old world elegance to interiors and textiles again. It is great to see that timeless design and good taste never fall out of fashion. N.xo

Fashion-isha said...

I love old patterns..the really beautiful stuff always comes back. Thanks for sharing and always stopping by to say hi!

quintessence said...

Such beautiful classics!! And that's why it's so important to have a knowledge of the past - because there is very little that hasn't been done before!!

Alison said...

Oh how I wish I could visit you and learn about all the fabrics you have and their history. I love you passion for it. Such beautiful fabrics!

designchic said...

What fabulous fabrics - all so luxurious, and the velvet on the chairs in the first image...amazing

Sharon Lee Johnson said...

I think really good design will go on and on and these fabrics are just exquisite. Your passion and wealth of knowledge on the subject is so inspiring! x Sharon

Mary Anne said...

Truly loved this informative post on fabrics and more fabrics. I think my favorite room was the first one posted. Beautiful. Must come by more often and learn more of what I thought I already knew! The Fortuny pillows ae amazing . . .Thanks for sharing your passion.

Mary Anne

Maison de lin said...


I love al thes old/new fabrics.

Thanks to sharring beautiful things whit us.


Heather Robinson said...

More please! Loved this post as it is always so great to learn from you Debra. Not to mention all of it is just so stunningly beautiful.

Victoria said...

That chair is fabulous...and I love the DVF rug based on a 17th century design. There is a great deal of beauty from the past that we continue to explore and enjoy again, and that's a good thing.
All the best...Victoria

Annie H. said...

Beautiful post. Intersting about copyright laws on rug design.

Greet Lefèvre said...

Oh Debra,
The patterns are all so beautiful! I love the Italian design that Diane Von F. uses for the rugs!
Very interesting post!

Blooming Rose Musings said...

Debra, this is a very interesting and informative post. When Falk Manor is mentioned the only word that comes to mind is...Stunning!
I adore your Fortuny images. What fabulous textures and colors! It's also interesting how DVF is using early Italian designs for her new line of rugs.
Timeless classics will always endure. I hope you do more posts like this and continue to educate us with your amazing wealth of knowledge. Thank you. XO

Thoughts on Design said...

Such an informative post! All those beautiful patterns colors and textures make a room so much more inviting.

Sally and I were in the Boston Design Center yesterday idea shopping for a small Show House we will be participating in. Over lunch, we were talking about the beauty of the older fabrics and patterns and that there seems to be a trend toward bringing them back in reinterpreted forms and expressions.



debra @ 5th and state said...

really interesting debra! loved the images and learning how these designs are replicated for today. your knowledge on textiles is fascinating, i vote for more posts on your topic

Anonymous said...

Great post... so interesting. I love all the patterns ... new and old. I always love to see a fresh take on a classic.

Taylor Greenwalt said...

Beautiful designs. I love fabrics. They are like art pieces to me.

for the love of a house said...

your Fortuny pillows... to die for. If you find them missing they'll be on my sofa!!:)


Stacy CUrran said...

Falk Manor is gorgeous, and I learned a it about it from your post!!

Boho Farm and Home said...

I am a love of Fortuny...if only it wasn't so que rico! You are right about old being new I see it,fabric,upholstery.
Love your passion Deb!

lvroftiques said...

I'm cheering!! Because I love the reuse of the antique textile patterns. AND because I can feel your passion come through on this subject Debra! *winks* I wish you HAD gone on and on....But I'm really salivating over that 15th century blue cut velvet fragment of yours with the metal cording....Who needs comfort if they could have THAT on a pillow or small chair? Lol! Not moi!*winks*
I also didn't know about the copyright laws pertaining to carpets/rugs...Only a dime size piece needs to be changed huh?..Learned a lot and loved this post! I hope you'll do many more on your passion for textiles. Vanna

Room Seventeen said...

Beautiful old patterns!

La Brocanteuse said...

Hello dear Debra, thank you for sharing this post, I find it most interesting..some real extraordinary textiles here...
thank you for your visit and loving my chairs..ha ha. I know, my husband did not get it either..untill he met the curator!
hugs and xx
Colette ~ Afrique du Sud

Mona Thompson Providence Ltd. said...

sooooo beautiful. You know I'm crazy for pretty textiles and fabrics. I love yours with the fabulous cording. XO, Mona

Elizabeth@ Pine Cones and Acorns said...

Wow!The fabric samples are amazing! I could not agree with you more about the designs of old reappearing. I purchased an antique chaise lounge and a few weeks later I saw the same fabric on my chaise which was origional, in a magazine.

I love coming here to visit, I always learn something!

Have a great day, I hope that you are feeling better. It took me a month to get over my bug.


Ispirato Design said...

The fabrics are beautiful and I've really been zeroing in on the patterns lately as well. The blue linen and velvet fragment that you have is beyond gorgeous. Do you have something upholstered with it?

Karen said...

I'm relatively new to your site. I love your post on fabrics as I'm searching for a 3" or wider trim that has the look of "old, renaissance" fabric. Is that something even possible to find? I was curious if you have any recommendations of where to begin my search.

I Dream Of said...

Love to see the beauty of years past updated for today, and I love using vintage fabrics in our home. These are lovely examples! Thanks for sharing your passion with us!

Luciane at said...

Hi my sweet Debra,

How are you doing today?

You've prepared such an amazing post. Everything you said makes sense. It's so crazy to see things coming back.

Btw, thank you for always being so sweet w/ your comments! :-)

Have a great day!


Luciane at

pve design said...

True, everything old is new again and I always admire how some things go in and out of fashion. For me there are always classics that just seem to age and get better over time.

Stacey said...

You're definitely the textile queen! Like fashion, interior design maintains its dynamism by taking something from the past and making it current. Great observation on your part too! XX

Anonymous said...

Wish I could help you but I'm clueless. Perhaps another blogger will be able to help out!! xoxo

Stacy CUrran said...

Hi Debra,
This is such an awesome post! I tend to forget details like history :) and so this is a nice refresher. I learned a lot and enjoyed it!

The French Tangerine said...

As you know, my obsession with pillows is ridiculous! I'm quite taken with that lovely pair of Fortuny pillows.. In a melony color no less. God help me.

Ivy Clad said...

Gorgeous, Debra! I swoon for Fortuny.


Related Posts with Thumbnails