This month’s Architectural Digest has a fascinating piece about the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s newly renovated Wrightsman Galleries. The piece focuses on their recreation of an embroidered fabric – embroidery by Marie Antoinette herself – that once graced a suite of furniture by Jean-Baptiste-Claude Sené for use by the Queen at the Chateau de Saint-Cloud, a 17th century palace that Louis XVI purchased for Marie in 1784. The Chateau was burned, but amazingly, some of the furniture still exists, as does a sample of the original embroidery.
The Met owns a berger chair, a daybed and a fire screen. They contracted with Chelsea Textiles in London to recreate the original floral embroidered pattern as upholstery fabric.
One of their big decisions was whether to use a white ground fabric or an “aged” color to match better with the 200+ year old patina of the furniture. Ultimately, they decided to go with a fresh white, which will naturally age over time.
Photography for Architectural Digest by Billy Cunningham.