Franklin Report Report Card for de Gournay in New York City
★ Franklin Report Card
de Gournay
243 East 59th Street
New York, NY 10022
(212) 564-9750
www.degournay.com
gwendolyn@degournay.com
Main Contact: Gwendolyn Rayner
FR Rated
Categories
Wallcoverings
Wallpaper
Painters & Wallpaperers

Services & Specialties
Bespoke, handmade chinoiserie wallcoverings, fabric, furniture, mirrors & porcelain

FRANKLIN REPORT RATINGS
Recommendation:
 
4.5
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FR Review:
Those who worry that chinoiserie is a dying art will find solace in de Gournay’s revitalization of the ornate tradition. This bespoke wallcovering company delivers all the favored classical motifs – cherry blossoms and bluebirds against a gold backdrop – but in a fresh way that has captivated top contemporary designers. The panoramic and eclectic panel options can even achieve a modern look, setting this company apart from traditionalist competitors. And while other firms may be comparable in price and quality, de Gournay has them all beat with its high – some even call it virtually impossible – level of customization. The way its “knowledgeable, passionate, and patient” staff work with clients to map out every inch of a room – adjusting a single flower in the design to ensure the grandfather clock doesn’t obstruct its view – has earned de Gournay the moniker “wallpaper engineers.”

While decorating his own home in the UK, founder and businessman Claud Cecil Gurney was unable to find an artist who met his chinoiserie standards, so he went right to the source and found local artisans in China who had mastered the technique. Satisfied, Gurney recruited the artists and started de Gournay in 1986. Today all products – from wallcoverings to furniture, mirrors, fabrics, and porcelain - are handmade by one of 200 artists in the company's studio in China. de Gournay has its headquarters in London and maintains showrooms worldwide, with its New York branch opening in 2012, headed by four full-time employees.

Throughout the lengthy process of designing and installing a room adorned in de Gournay, the staff, both local and overseas, is applauded for balancing a meticulous yet patient demeanor. On-site scaling and sketching must be precise before it is sent off to China, where each bespoke panel can take anywhere from 30 to 100 hours to paint. Only a select few installers are trusted to complete the process, though artists can be flown in to touch-up any flaws if a designer decides to use their own subs. Since panels range from $700-$3,500 depending on the degree of customization, de Gournay is usually a product reserved for high-end projects, though the general consumer might get away with decorating a den. Given the global nature of the company, disconnects are inevitable, but loyal sources claim these hiccups are always resolved immediately and in a composed manner. All things considered, de Gournay's products are "a thing of beauty" and "the best in the business" for chinoiserie.

Representative Client Comments:
“The staff provides a high level of customization. Everything in the room is considered, from the layout to the furniture.” “I try to use them for every project if I can, and I’ve used them for my own home.” “When it comes to mapping out the room, they are great at laying everything out in black and white – great at accommodating negative and positive space.” “It’s such a delicate, beautiful product – I love that its customizable.” “There are other companies I use for traditional wall coverings but when I want a fresher look – not like your grandmother’s house – I use de Gournay.” “Gwendolyn really puts in the effort and considers us. She’ll come into our office every time they have a new product just to make sure we are in the know.” “It’s expensive but it’s what really makes the room special.” “They will work until its right. They’ve never not delivered.” “The product is one of beauty. It’s old fashion and it’s a lost art that's been rediscovered."

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