Niermann Weeks is fortunate to represent the wonderful Savel fabrics in our showrooms.
Savel is really Sallie Hall and Andrea Elish, a mother/daughter team, who travel the world finding artisanal fabrics of extraordinary texture and tone. Last year I wrote about their Saladino for Savel Fabric Collection, which has been a big seller. By popular demand John will even be expanding his collection this year.
Now I want to write about Savel’s collection for the famous Swiss fabric company Jacob Schlaepfer. (From now on, let’s just abbreviate the name to JS.) JS came into business in 1904 and rapidly gained fame for lace-making, embroidery, and innovative fabric techniques for haute couture. As time has passed, most of the famous couturiers have depended on JS for specialty fabrics. The names include Armani, Romeo Gigli, Yves St. Laurent, Chanel, Ungaro, Christian Lacroix, Prada, Dior, and Marc Jacobs. Recently when JS decided to launch a décor line of fabrics, they selected Savel to represent them in the US,
In 2008 Niermann Weeks launched JS for Savel, first in Los Angeles and then in New York. The JS website brags about the range of their prize-winning offerings, like classic St Gallen guipure lace, textiles studded with rhinestones, or our unique sequin embroideries. Then there are textile innovations such as ink jet prints, laser cut, composés and experiments using metal, varnish and paper. These extraordinary handcrafted fabrics can be used either as textile art installations or in drapery, wallcoverings, or upholstery. After reading that kind of copy, De Beers Diamond Jewellers has appointed JS to design and supply a textile as the new corporate standard for all de Beers shops worldwide.
Now, let’s look at what all the fuss is about. Savel’s Andrea Elish stands here in front a frame of JS’s Lara Meissen pattern.
This photo does not catch the amazing clarity and complexity of the images on the fabric. This detail may give you a better idea, but you really need to come see this fabric in person at Niermann Weeks’ NY or DC showrooms. The images are so clear and so realistic that your hand just wants to handle them. Your eye forgets that you are really looking at an incredibly skillful fabric design.
If you like minimalism better than a riot of color, then look at this JS fabric that won the European Imagination Prize in 2009 for outstanding textile. It’s a three-dimensional creation of foam tipped with gold leather and applied to transparent tulle. Selected from 1200 submissions, JS got the award for the most daring and most surprising fabric in terms of material, technique and finishing.
In NY the JS display and our showroom manager, Sani, greet you at the elevator entrance:
The late lamented magazine Metroopolitan Home loved the JS line.
Surely you need to make your headboard as fun as this one in the City Garden Hotel in Zug, Switzerland? I’d do it at home, if I thought Joe could handle all the color and pattern. Looking up at that fabric would put me in a good mood for the rest of the day, come what may.
And now let’s close with my all-time favorite image. In Moscow a pool is being “roofed” with a customized version of the Glinka pattern. Not only can these Russian swimmers use the indoor, heated pool all year round, but they also swim under an almost-photorealist sky. Lucky people!
Since I hope you are now intrigued by Savel’s Jakob Schlaepfer collection, please refer to these websites for more information:
And don’t forget to come see the fabric in person, so you can swoon as I do.