How To Do Federal Style In A Very Small Room Famous Interior Designers Series – Stephane Boudin

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Famous Interior Designers Series – Stephane Boudin

Stephane Boudin, a Parisian interior designer is known as the president of what many consider the leading interior decoration company of the 20th century: Maison Jansen. One of Boudin’s biggest projects as an interior designer was the restoration and renovation of the White House in the early 1960s.

Stephane Boudin was born in 1880. His father – Alexandre Boudin was a manufacturer of trimmings and ornaments. It was while Stphane was working in his father’s textile trimmings company in the 1920s that Jean-Henri Jansen, the founder of Maison Jansen, approached him. In 1925, Boudin got an assistant named Monsieur Henry Samuel. After Jansen’s death in 1928, Stphane Boudin together with Gaston Schwartz took control of all the decoration and interior design projects of Maison Jansen. While Schwartz contributed aspects of modernism, Boudin was the traditionalist.

Boudin has helped the firm win several new interior design projects with an emphasis on historical accuracy and detail, and through his ability to create dramatic and unforgettable spaces. He efficiently mentored the firm’s young protégés, reviewed their work regularly, and organized trips for them to Europe.

The most significant commission Boudin received was probably the one he received before his retirement: Jacqueline Kennedy’s order to work on the interiors of the White House (1961-63). Jayne Wrightsman, the woman who introduced Boudin to Jackie, was personally tutored by Boudin in French decorative arts.

Jacqueline wanted an international touch to be added to the American aspect of the White House, and Boudin set herself the task of making this wish a reality. In addition, Boudin and Henry du Pont were hired with the duty of obtaining antiques, and of lending sophistication and thoroughness to the decoration.

Boudin focused primarily on the American Empire style when decorating the Red Room of the White House. It included pieces made by Charles-Honor Lannuier, a cabinetmaker. In the case of the Blue Room, Boudin emphasized furnishing it with French Empire style furniture. The style for the Green Room, i.e. the Federal Style, was chosen by Henry du Pont, influenced by Boudin. Boudin also introduced changes in the decoration of the Oval Office and the Cabinet.

Another major interior design project entrusted to Boudin in his lifetime was to completely change the famous Leeds Castle into an elegant country residence. It was the last private owner of the castle – Lady Baillie who entrusted him with this task.

Stephane Boudin retired at the age of seventy and died in 1967; his successor was Pierre Delbe.

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