COU­TURE WAL LS

Be­spoke craft tech­niques, such as re­lief plas­ter, cut leather and bead­ing are trans­form­ing wall­cov­er­ings into works of art

ELLE Decoration (UK) - - Decorating -

At chef Ol­lie Dab­bous’ new May­fair restau­rant Hide (above), guests can be for­given for let­ting their gaze wan­der be­yond the ta­ble: the venue’s be­spoke wall fin­ishes com­mand at­ten­tion. In the up­stairs din­ing room, Lon­don artist Rachel Dein’s hand­made plas­ter mu­ral is adorned with a flo­ral re­lief pat­tern, formed us­ing casts of real for­aged plants. In the bath­rooms, Venezue­lan artist Jeanette Ramirez of Twig By The Clo­ro­fi­las has stud­ded walls and ceil­ings with pre­served moss, mush­rooms and lichen. ‘The idea was to treat the walls as large-scale in­stal­la­tions,’ ex­plains Rose Mur­ray, di­rec­tor of Th­ese White Walls, the de­sign stu­dio that led the project.

The walls at Hide are just one ex­am­ple of a new wave of hand­crafted fin­ishes that are as finely em­bel­lished as cou­ture gowns. More adapt­able than off-the-peg wallpapers, they can be cus­tomised to fit the shape of your space or to tell per­sonal sto­ries: the mu­ral at Hide con­tains trea­sured ob­jects hid­den amid the flow­ers, in­clud­ing a neck­lace from Dab­bous and one of Mur­ray’s brooches.

For a pri­vate home in Hamp­stead, Lon­don, de­signer Daniel Heath cre­ated be­spoke bir­dand-vine pan­elling that’s tai­lored to flow across the bath­room walls, snaking around fix­tures and door frames (far left, from £500 per square me­tre; daniel­heath.co.uk). ‘ The look is del­i­cate, yet lux­u­ri­ous,’ says Heath. ➤

Equally im­pact­ful are Fameed Khalique’s raf­fia weaves (top left, from £947 per square me­tre; fameed­khalique.com). They come in many hand-em­broi­dered pat­terns, such as flo­rals and geo­met­rics. ‘ We can also cre­ate wood-ve­neer wall­cov­er­ings that re­sem­ble mar­quetry [£130 per square me­tre] and sculpted leather fin­ishes [from £1,950 per square me­tre],’ says Khalique. ‘Be­cause walls are such a huge can­vas, there’s po­ten­tial to cre­ate some­thing with in­cred­i­ble drama.’

A height­ened sense of ma­te­ri­al­ity is key to de­signer Genevieve Ben­nett’s hand-carved leather wall pan­elling (far left), which adds sen­sual tex­ture to any in­te­rior. Clad an en­tire wall or choose smaller pan­els (from £2,750 per square me­tre; genevieveben­nett.com).

At Fro­men­tal, there are end­less op­tions. Its ‘Ponti’ de­sign (left, £556 per square me­tre; fro­men­tal.co.uk) is in­spired by Gio Ponti’s geo­met­ric pat­terns and is made of silk, hand­painted to re­sem­ble traver­tine. Like­wise, the brand’s ‘Braque’ de­sign’s col­laged tea pa­pers are coloured and scaled to trans­form a room into an art­work (£471 per square me­tre).

For in­te­rior walls at their most lux­u­ri­ously em­bel­lished, look to spe­cial­ist maker De Gour­nay, which has re­cently in­tro­duced bead­ing and em­broi­dery to com­ple­ment its iconic hand-painted wallpapers. Se­quins, del­i­cate beads and me­tal­lic threads can be ap­plied to cus­tom pat­terns or any de­sign in its per­ma­nent col­lec­tion, so they glis­ten as the light moves across them. On the Ja­pane­sein­spired ‘Fish’ wall­pa­per on sil­ver-gilded silk (top, from £1,344 per panel; de­gour­nay.com), the threads mimic the iri­des­cence of scales. It’s as close to cou­ture as walls get.

From top The stun­ning mu­ral at Hide restau­rant, Lon­don. A closer look at Hide’s plas­ter re­lief wall. Be­spoke wall de­sign by Daniel Heath

From top Wo­ven raf­fia by Fameed Khalique. De Gour­nay’s luxe ‘Fish’ wall­pa­per. ‘Ponti’ wall­pa­per by Fro­men­tal. Leather wall by Genevieve Ben­nett

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