The workshop, the manufacturing
Authenticity, attention to detail
Each creation is a unique piece, entirely thought out, made and assembled by hand, on a soft cotton twill or a fine weave natural linen. The lampshades are set on voluptuous curved bases, designed in my workshop in Bordeaux, then turned by a talented cabinetmaker based in the Ardèche. Each leg, whether in ash or walnut, reveals its own grain.
From the creation of a scene on a circular or oval format, to a thinner double-drum lampshade that highlights the entire object, every detail counts. The frame is designed to create a unity with its base, and then custom-made by a French artisan with an “Entreprise du Patrimoine Vivant” certification (Living Heritage Company). The hardback lampshade is carefully bonded and its interiors are detailed with a cotton or linen braid, all handmade.
The embroidered illustrations
Lou de Pray deliberately strayed from tradition. For this first collection, I chose machine stitching to maintain delicate and discrete lines. A choice that was bold, risky, miles away from the happy and carefree fluidity of a pencil’s lines. It is a method that requires constant attention and a high level of precision at the moment when the needle pierces the fabric. It can be smooth and soft or bright and fine depending on the chosen thread, and its results will always vary depending on the fabric.
The silky and delicate thread is made of 100% viscose. It is a high-quality material whose origins are entirely plant-based.
French wooden bases
Most of the wood comes from upcycled sources. Using old furniture, forgotten stock, and other scraps has allowed me to use these small quantities in my first collection. Each piece of wood is meticulously selected by a carpenter, before being cut to size and trimmed to give it back its original aspect and colour. With its true nature revealed, it is then laid out, stuck together, and pared down with a chisel, before being handed to the turner.
The walnut selected by Lou de Pray gets its distinctive grain from its native and capricious land, the Ardèche region (France). Its beauty is also what makes it such a rare wood.
The European ash, “Fraxinus Excelsior”, is known for its flexibility and resistance to splitting, and is thus often used for the creation of tools and their handles. Of a naturally pearly white and pink colour, we use a black alcohol-based stain that beautifully reveals its grain.