The Royal Treatment

The Royal Treatment | Yves Klein Portrait | Interior - | Calisto Home Bedding | Heritage Sideboard - Boca Do Lobo | HouseBlended

Blue Period. It’s been a while since I’ve spotlighted one of my favorite subjects at HouseBlended – the design mashup. Whether it’s the arbitrary exercise of pulling two random design themes out of a hat or helping a couple merge their distinctive styles into one cohesive home they can both be happy in, bringing seemingly disparate design elements together is one of the most exciting things about interior design today. This time around, I wanted to pair two things that are quintessentially French – the Empire Style, made popular during the Napoleonic era, and the distinctive shade of vivid royal blue that’s synonymous with iconic 20th century artist, Yves Klein. Today, blended elements of both can be spotted on runways and in some of the chicest interiors. In my opinion, it’s a match made in Gallic design heaven.

A leading member of the Nouveau Realisme movement in post-war France, iconic French artist Yves Klein used much of his work to focus on the power and interplay of color. Many of his quintessential pieces employed the use of a brilliant ultramarine hue – which he developed with a Parisian art supplier. This signature shade now bears his name and is still available today as International Klein Blue.

People Begin To Fly - Yves Klein, 1961 | Victoire de Samothrace - S9, 1962 | Yves Klein
Works by Yves Klein: “People Begin to Fly” (1961) | Victoire de Samothrace – S9, (1962)

Electric Blue. Klein incorporated this bold azure shade into a prodigious body of work including paintings, sculptures and furniture, as well as performance art pieces that often incorporated his wife and artistic muse, Rotraut Uecker. In sharing his fascination with the color, Klein said, “Blue has no dimensions. It is beyond dimensions, whereas the other colors are not… All colors arouse specific associative ideas, psychologically material or intangible, while blue suggests at most the sea and sky, and they after all, are in actual, visible nature what is most abstract.”

Rise of the Empire. As with concurrent movements in architecture and fashion, the Empire Style that sprung up following the French Revolution was meant to harken back to the virtues and aesthetic ideals of ancient Greece and the Roman Republic. In furniture design, this often translated into clean-lined, massive pieces with simple accents such as column supports or simple metal embellishments.

Mastering the Mix. These two seemingly random design elements work surprisingly well together. Klein’s vibrant blue is a stand-out star – acting as a perfect bridge between the regal, clean lines of the Empire Style and elements with a mid-century modern flair. I’ve spotted this synergy in numerous recent runway shows and interiors features.

Images Courtesy of | Gareth Pugh | Courreges | Escada | Design Mashups: The Royal Treatment | HouseBlended
Images courtesy of Gareth Pugh | Courreges | Escada

Studio Ko - Paris Apt of Francois Halard | Jason Arnold Interior - Photo x Alyssa Rosenheck | Image from Cote Maison Magazine - If The Lampshade Fits | Design Mashups: The Royal Treatment | HouseBlended
Interior Images: Studio Ko | Jason Arnold Interiors by Alyssa Rosenheck | Cote Maison

Shop the Look. Below are just a few ideas for shaking up your own personal style with this distinctive design story. For even more ideas and a closer look at the work of Yves Klein, check out HouseBlended on Pinterest.

Romano Mirror - Bungalow5 | Anthropometrie Print x Yves Klein | Capsule Ink Print - West Elm | Design Mashups : The Royal Treatment | HouseBlended

1) Romano Mirror, Sapphire, Check for Pricing – Bungalow5 | 2) Anthropometrie (1960), Yves Klein, $178.99 – | 3) The Arts Capsule Ink Print, $199.00- West Elm 

Brushstroke Pillow - Dwell Studio | Throw South of Market | Eagle Pillow - Zazzle | Design Mashups : The Royal Treatment | HouseBlended

4) Brushstroke Pillow Cover, $13.00 – Dwell Studio | 5) Wool Throw, Cobalt, $279.00 – South of Market | 6) Vintage Eagle Pillow, $33.10 – Zazzle 

Acacia Lamp - Bungalow5 | Chanel Lamp - Bradburn Gallery | Tall Lattice Lamp - Mecox Garden | Design Mashups : The Royal Treatment | HouseBlended

7) Acacia Lamp, Azure, $668.00 – Plum Goose | 8) Blue Ariamini Lamp, Bradburn Galley, $545.00 – One Kings Lane | 9) Tall Lattice Lamp, Blue $450.00 – Mecox Garden 

Louis XVI Chair - Wisteria | Eloquence Table - Layla Grayce | Camden Headboard - Ballard Design | Design Mashups : The Royal Treatment | HouseBlended

10) Louis XVI End Chair, Royal Blue, $389.00 – Wisteria | 11) Eloquence Column Coffee Table, $937.50 – Layla Grace | 12) Camden Headboard, Garrison Teal Linen, $774.00 – Ballard Designs 

Lippa Chair - UrbanLoft | Kensington Table - Brownstone Furniture | Verpan Stool - ABC Home | Design Mashups : The Royal Treatment | HouseBlended

13) Lippa Dining Armchair, Blue, $250.00 – Urban Loft | 14) Kensington Dining Table, Brownstone Furniture, $2,575.00 – Houzz | 15) Stool, Verpan, $705 – ABC Carpet & Home 

Panton Chair - 1st Dibs | Empire Style Secretary - ArchiExpo | Loren Campaign Chest - Dwell Studio | Design Mashups : The Royal Treatment | HouseBlended

16) Panton Chair, Blue, $950.00 – 1st Dibs | 17) Empire Style Secretary, Check for Pricing – ArchiExpo | 18) Loren 3-Drawer Campaign Chest – Dwell Studio 

Promenade Rug - Kyle Bunting | Casey Rug x NuLOOM - BlueFly | Overdyed Rug - | Design Mashups : The Royal Treatment | HouseBlended

19) Reflect Rug, Cowhide, Check for Pricing – Kyle Bunting | 20) Casey Rug, NuLOOM, $273.00 – AllModern | 21) Overdyed Rug, Blue, $491.00 – 

Yves Salt Cellar - Leif Shop | Long Platter - Domino | Cobalt Pitcher - Bloomingdales | Design Mashups : The Royal Treatment | HouseBlended

22) Yves Salt Cellar, $20.00 – Leif Shop | 23) Long Platter, Blue, $47.99 – Domino | 24) Acrylic Pitcher, Royal, $68.00 – Neiman Marcus 

YvesKlein (French Edition) - Amazon | Yves Klein - Barnes & Noble | Empire Style, The Hotel de Beauharnais  - Amazon | The French Empire Style of Furniture - Barnes & Noble | Design Mashups : The Royal Treatment | HouseBlended

25) YYves Klein (French Edition), $89.20 – Amazon | 26) Yves Klein, $16.95 – Barnes & Noble | 27) Empire Style, The Hotel de Beauharnais in Paris, $102.60 – Amazon | 28) The French Empire Style of Furniture, $26.45 – Barnes & Noble

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1 Comment

  • Reply 2017-03-20 at 12:53 pm

    Good info. Lucky me I recently found your blog by accident (stumbleupon).

    I’ve book marked it for later!

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