Translated from a French article by Signatures Singulières

Véronique de Soultrait makes up a new know-how: the molding of the rope to create unique wall decorations. Absolute masterpieces for interior decoration, it is with admiration that Signatures Singulières Magazine makes you discover this goldsmith work.

Above: Véronique de Soultrait in her workshop – ©Pierre Salagnac – “Fleur” mirror made of rope marquetry.

Rope Screen. Restaurant des Rois, la Réserve de Beaulieu.

Eternal creative, Véronique de Soultrait knew since she was young that she wanted to work with her hands. In the eighties, she convinced her parents to let her join the Beaux-Arts in Lyon and she studied courses in painting and textile drawing. Quickly, she nourished a deep admiration for the work of the hand and claimed a certain loyalty to ancestral know-how in general. At the time, she conceives beauty and expresses herself as a decorative painter with her hands, however the task is arduous. She stops and goes towards a less physical creative activity, the macramé. One thing leading to another, Véronique de Soultrait starts to work on ropes. She launches a collection of cushions based on a macramé technique that she presents at the Maison & Objet fair. It was not a great success, but it did not discourage her from pursuing her passion.

Decorative screen made in natural rope and gold, pattern “Poisson d’or”.

Wall decorations

Véronique de Soultrait then decides to use this technique, which allies thread and rope, but this time on a wall support. Not only is she getting closer to her first love, but she is also inventing a new creative technique: creating wall decorations with ropes. Passionate about braiding techniques, she creates unique pieces for high decoration in her workshop in Lyon, such as wall panels, door covering, headboards, screens, mirrors, bedside tables or lamp bases, drawers, door handles etc. The applications are numerous. Véronique de Soultrait rolls, winds, stretches, dyes and waxes the rope to create unique decorations on a wooden support. She plays with materials and textures. The ropes and colors roll up and intertwine meticulously – like marquetry – under her fairy fingers. Each creation is customized to fit every project.

Rope scales wall. Cartier boutique in Zurich.

A taste for unique decoration

Passionate about her craft, Véronique de Soultrait gets into this new profession by following her instinct. As a new “cordelier”/ rope worker, she applies ancestral know-how to design and interior decoration and perseveres to make people discover her trade. She contacts great decorators such as Jacques Garcia or the Cabinet Alberto Pinto who fell in love with her work at first sight. The feedback is encouraging and Véronique continues to work her technique until she gets her first order.

“Madras” Armchair by Laura Gonzalez dressed in rope by Véronique de Soultrait. AD Interiors 2019.

At the beginning, she only creates black decors. She goes to the essentials of graphic design. Her work is very rigorous and demanding. The purity is paramount. What she does not want at all is to fall in an ostentatious luxury. To do so, Véronique is inspired by ethnic motifs or the thirties, she stylizes and magnifies them. Then, as creations go by, the color integrates very gently. Véronique de Soultrait dyes her ropes in her workshop to create personal and unique shades that are very subtle.

Details of a rope wall decoration on black linen.

The art of taming the material

As a very meticulous craftsman, Véronique de Soultrait takes care of every detail, from the design to the choice of materials. The range of worked ropes is very wide, from the most untreated to the most precious like gold threads. For each realization, the most appropriate ropes are selected. As for the patterns, they are designed with more or less dense braids and can integrate fabrics for backgrounds. Each realization is made by instinct.

“Game” Wall panels in black ropes on a linen background. ©Erick Saillet.

The dialogue with material

Véronique maintains a deep connection with the rope, a material that she considers both “sensual, soft, spiky, mat and shiny” and “that bends to your desires”. Within the limit of the material, she creates raw, natural and sophisticated decorations. More than a paradox, it is a richness, that also characterizes her personality, a creative instinctive who shapes for hours barefoot in her workshop. Solitary and yet so spontaneous, so radiant. Natural and simple, yet creating works for such a luxurious clientele. A truth, a know-how that goes beyond appearances. And this is surely what makes the beauty of these works.

“Eternité” Mural composition.
“Fleurs” Sculpture. Brass base, modules dressed with rope.
Mandala in rope. Console table covered with rope marquetry. Totems in black and gold rope. Modules covered with black rope and gold leaf.
Rope and suede decoration. On the right: “Anahatha” heart chakra.

Véronique de Soultrait
162, rue Vendôme
69003 Lyon
Tél. : +33 (0)6 75 70 18 35