John Derian: Decoupeur


When it comes to good design, it usually pays to aim for simplicity. And what could be simpler than decoupage – the art of cutting and sticking? When removed from complicated techniques and specialist equipment, decoupage puts the all of the focus onto aesthetics. It is, in some ways, a very pure form of art. The artist chooses images that attract her/him and arranges them in the most appealing way. Much of the skill involved relates to having an eye for beauty, and an understanding of composition. Decoupage is the perfect activity for a rainy day indoors, but it is also a technique that can produce exquisite pieces of art. 16R-Camellia_large16R-Floral-Marzipan_large 10R-Swallow-Right_large11R-Variegated-Camellia_17994c71-8cab-4a4b-bad9-79011c92d04c_large The work of John Derian belongs to the latter category. Founded in 1989, his studio produces beautiful handmade plates, paperweights and other household items, all using decoupage techniques. His designs appeal to customers all over the world, and have been featured in Vogue, The World of Interiors and Elle Décor – among many other titles. John Derian’s use of quaint floral motifs and calligraphic text have a nostalgic feel to them, yet his wares would not be out of place in a thoroughly modern home. His book, John Derian Picture Book, was recently released and contains 300 vintage images that have featured in his designs, as well as a foreword by Anna Wintour. ohui John Derian has taken over 30 years to develop his particular style, but thankfully it takes much less time to give decoupage a go. On 19 November, Selvedge will be hosting a workshop by Lisa Tilley, who will be teaching students how to decorate sewing boxes with decoupage techniques (fun fact: a person who makes decoupage is known as a decoupeur). DECOUPAGE SEWING BOXES WORKSHOP WITH LISA TILLEY November 19, 11-5, £120 Hosted by Lisa Tilley Selvedge Shop, 162 Archway Road, London N6 5BB John Derian Picture Book Artisan Books tilley-box-1  

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