The British have a long history behind them in the world of wallpaper and wall decor. A worthy heir to this ancestral tradition, the Cole & Son brand has perpetuated the know-how from across the Channel since 1875. With its rolls of rare quality, it changes its prints from one collection to another by constantly seeking originality and details that make all the difference. Today acclaimed around the world, from the White House to Buckingham Palace via hotels and private homes, the wallpapers made by Cole & Son continue to convey a whole section of British history, with their motifs revisited or reinvented.
A fascinating story
Cole & Son was founded in 1875 by John Perry, son of a vicar of Cambridge. Passionate about printing techniques, he developed a method to imitate the shiny appearance of silk on a wall decor. The company was then located in North London - the cradle of wallpaper manufacturing with its 200 factories located in the region - and was called John Perry Ltd. Its greatest success will undoubtedly be the modernization of the manual flocking process (covering of paper by projection): it is today the only company in the world to perpetuate the use of this technique. Over the years and through his many travels, John Perry will accumulate an imposing collection of carved wooden blocks used for printing rolls of hand-painted wallpaper. Today, the British brand has a pool of more than 1,800 printing patterns, 350 screen printing patterns, and a multitude of original drawings and wallpapers representing all styles of the 18th, 19th and 20th century! All the influences are represented, but the English touch - with its stripes and its quaint charm - is more than ever present in each of the collections. When John Perry died in 1940, the company was bought by a wallpaper dealer, AP Cole, who gave him his current name: John Perry Ltd therefore became Cole & Son. The various business transactions and mergers carried out previously by John Perry will allow the new owner of Cole & Son to use printing blocks which were used to make the wallpapers of palaces, castles and theaters from all over Europe. Today, many brands call on the know-how of the British house to create their own collection of wallpapers, as the quality of the work and the finesse of the designs is unique.
The British brand presents each year an extremely neat collection of wallpapers with bright patterns. His speciality ? The updating of certain ancestral designs, reworked in a contemporary spirit with new materials, colors and perspectives. To perpetuate its status as a visionary creator, Cole & Son regularly calls on big names in fashion or design, like Vivienne Westwood or Tom Dixon, for special launches. The British house also publishes collections at the request of major brands; this year, the Italian Fornassetti joined his creativity to that of Cole & Son for a range of wallpapers, friezes and panoramic decorations inviting to escape and dream.