Trimmings & Passementiers
Declercq Passementiers, a design and manufacturing company of exquisite trimmings and fabric, had its beginnings in Paris in 1852. Generations of craftspeople have handed down their expertise and ancestral techniques of a trade that has become rare. Jérôme and Elisa Declercq represent the sixth generation of this family of trimming-makers.
In 1852, Joseph Bertaud, Claude Declercq’s great-grandfather, bought a small trimmings factory at 34 rue Quincampoix in the heart of Paris. His daughter, Marie-Louise, married Ernest Perret and inherited her father’s business. In 1900 the workshops were moved to rue Saint-Sauveur.
In 1930, during the Depression, Gaston Perret was the first to create the shuttlecock that would revolutionize trimmings for several years. La Passementerie Nouvelle was born. In 1948, his daughter Jacqueline Perret-Declercq began to work at his side and later took over the direction in collaboration with her son Claude.
In 1971, La Passementerie Nouvelle moved to rue Etienne Marcel. It acquired Louvet & Mauny in 1972, a very old company dating from the 18th century, and in 1977 the prestigious company André Boudin, renown for having made somee of the world’s most beautiful trimmings during the first half of the twentieth century. Successively in 1980 and 1990, Jérôme and Elisa joined their father in the family company, which became Declercq Passementiers in 1996.
Matching with furnishing fabric, trimmings give an incomparable touch. Trimmings enhance, bring contrast or compliment to a dominant color while adding delicate refinement. A nice tieback over a curtain, a sofa fringe, a braid or gimp for cushions an more, trimmings ornament, enrich, and give life to fabrics they are sewed on.
History has proved Declercq Passementiers to be one of the pillars in the art of interior design. Museums and historical châteaux under renovation rely on their expertise to reproduce trimmings of exceptional intricacy and beauty. The production of trimmings is very complex and several different structural techniques are used in the creation of a single item. Declercq Passementiers always makes trimmings of the highest quality. The company has preserved the ancestral techniques while constantly innovating its methods and designs.
The skill of craftspeople is to use simple threads, to weave, interlace and assembly them in order to create ornaments, real jewels of threads. It is a very old know-how which became more and more sophisticated in the course of centuries.
For some designers, for example Corey Damen Jenkins & Associates, Passementiers and Trimmings will become a big trend again in 2019.
Trimmings are the only textile product where several different structural techniques are used in the creation of a single item.
The first step is the research for the different materials needed for the production of an order. The threads are grouped by width and quality, in the appropriate color tones and according to use. If the dyed material cannot be found in the existent stock, we prepare the raw materials and have them dyed. After dyeing, they are spooled.
The second step is the preparation of the threads on the loom. If the item is composed of decorative ornaments, these are prepared with “le retordeur”, the mechanism for twisting threads.
Some of the materials are destined for the mechanical loom: first carefully threaded onto the loom as the desired pattern requires. The mechanical loom allows us to create the most complex ribbons, braids and some of the simple gimps. Other materials are hand-woven to create the complex gimps, velvet ribbons, braids and bullion fringes.
Still other materials are destined for the work-table, where items are assembled by hand without the use of looms: tassels, complex gimps. The last step therefore is the production itself: weaving on Jacquard mechanic loom, hand weaving or hand work-table.
Castle of Versaille
Declercq Passementiers has participated in the restoration of the Versailles Theater, which is apart of the Castel Versaille. The fabrication is identical to its original and has taken more than 500 hours of work to manufacture. Almost 30kg of gold and 20kg of cotton were used by the experts following a 150 year old tradition of work.
During the renovation of the Dresden Castle in Saxony, Declercq Passementiers participated in the redevelopment of the apartments of Auguste IV. The fabrication of the motive in gold and parchemin was similar to the models of the 17th century to keep the charm of the alive.