Sunday, April 7, 2013

Scalamandre Zebras

The first contribution to our Ugly Fabric Challenge was the Scalamandre Zebra. Being the first entry it subsequently ended up being the cover on our Pinterest page. It stirred a bit of controversy amongst a few people who thought it's contribution to such a contest was a travesty. So I decided I need to learn more about it. Here's what I found.

Though this fabric was submitted to the Ugly Fabric Challenge it in fact has only been available for purchase as a fabric as of recently.  It was originally made as wall paper by Flora Scalamandre. It was created in the late 1930s for Gino's Restaurant in New York City.

The artwork is Flora's own and is a representation of a safari hunt. Such images were popular in this era. It is a representation of grace and elegance as the frolicking zebras are seen as "eluding the arrows with grace." The contrast of the black and white zebra against the red background became immensely popular and the pattern was soon available in a variety of colors.

It's popularity led to a variety of products such as



umbrellas, and now

This iconic pattern has survived the decades and remains enormously popular even today. Here is an image from the 2001 movie The Royal Tenenbaums where the wall paper is used in the Tenenbaum home.

There are groups of socialites to this day that use the Scalamandre Zebra as their symbol. These groups are unified by such things as each member owning a purse or umbrella or other object with the Scalamandre Zebra.

Lynn Chalk is currently carrying the Scalamandre Zebra fabric in a variety of colorways. 

Which item do you like best? I'm partial to the shoes, myself. :)

Enjoy! Happy Monday!

No comments:

Post a Comment