Arts + Crafts Design Advice Inspiration Uncategorized

The French Art of Passimenterie

Happy New Year readers!

I would like to focus on a trend that is all set to gain popularity this year. The craft of Passimenterie, which was highlighted in my last blog. The French word is new to me but the art is not.  Curiosity for the beautiful craft has probed me to delve a little further.

What exactly is it?

Passimenterie is the art of making elaborate trimmings or edgings of applied braid, gold or silver cord, embroidery, coloured silk, or beads for clothing or furnishings.

Handwork contributes to 80% of the overall production. It originated in France in 16th Century and indicated status or wealth.

The formal guilds taught decorative passimenterie and the apprenticeship would last 7 years. Thereafter, a master would be able to take on commissioned work from the royalty, clergy and military.


These include tassel, fringes, ornamental cords, galloons, pompons, rosettes, and glimps as other forms.


This form of decoration has always been there. But in  recent years less ornate decor styles have been taking centre stage. Styles such as Scandinavian, Mid Century, Modern are more utilitarian based. These styles follow the less is more concept.

So lets see how these delicate decoration details can be used in today’s interiors.

My personal favourite of all ornamental trims is the tassel. The dangling trim is made by laying parallel a bunch of cords or threads of even length and fastening them at one end. The colours, the threads, the embroidery and their elegant feminine quality are breathtakingly beautiful.

Commonly used as tiebacks for curtains, they can also be used as finial tassels for curtain rods or to decorate door knobs and antique keys for cabinetry.

Embroidered glimp tape in contrasting colours, adds detail to what would otherwise be a very plain upholstered chair and stool.

By stitching a multitude of pompoms in various sizes to this rug base, a wonderful cosy texture is created.

A bunch of several colourful tassels are tied to this book bind forming a pretty feature

Stringed pompoms are thrown over this notice board to add a punch of colour.

These fluffy brushed tassels stitched around this upholstered stool add a touch of whimsical interest. I hope they come with a brush set!

By creating tiers of shaded blue fringe. this pendant has an almost physical element about it. Interesting.

Please do not hesitate to introduce these pretty decoration details into your homes. There is an decorative trim to suit all styles. They are quick to install and add an instant touch of class and colour.

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