So here’s another #colourchallenge for you. This is a slightly…



So here’s another #colourchallenge for you. This is a slightly muted version of our Peacock. What should we call it?
#bespokeluxury #luxurycolour #bespokecouture

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Challenge for you! We could do with a new name for this gorgeous…



Challenge for you!
We could do with a new name for this gorgeous purple silk. What does it remind you of?
#colourchallenge #luxurycolour #bespokecolour

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We could do with a new name for this gorgeous…
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Spring greens! The non-edible kind that tells of of the delights…



Spring greens! The non-edible kind that tells of of the delights of warmer days and brighter sunshine on its way. At last! Time to get the paint palette out and create some new colours. It’s definitely the warmest day of the year here for a change. Spring has been a long time coming.

#springgreens #luxurygreenbeauty #springmoss #luxurycouture #artcouture

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Is it any wonder that we love the Impressionists? Inspirations…



Is it any wonder that we love the Impressionists? Inspirations or just inspired by the same vibrancy of colour we all see in nature? Either way it was a delicious treat spending time at the National Gallery a couple of weeks ago and drinking in the colour and creativity.

#luxuryart #silkart #textileartists #bespokecouture #artofcouture #artofluxury

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Just love the way that there are so many colours in one piece of…



Just love the way that there are so many colours in one piece of cloth that makes the fabric glow especially when light plays a part in highlighting the textures and shapes created. Add a moving body in the garment, a beautiful elegant feminine form and her movement brings a work of art to life. How cool is that?? #artofgrace #luxuryart #femininebeauty #artofcolour #textileartist #luxuryfashion #wearableart

Charles and Patricia Lester Social http://twitter.com/CPLester1 http://www.facebook.com/charles.patricia.lester https://www.instagram.com/charlesandpatricialester/ http://pinterest.com/charlesandpatricialester

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Just love the way that there are so many colours in one piece of…



Just love the way that there are so many colours in one piece of cloth that makes the fabric glow especially when light plays a part in highlighting the textures and shapes created. Add a moving body in the garment, a beautiful elegant feminine form and her movement brings a work of art to life. How cool is that??

#artofgrace #luxuryart #femininebeauty #artofcolour #textileartist #luxuryfashion #wearableart

Charles and Patricia Lester Social http://twitter.com/CPLester1 http://www.facebook.com/charles.patricia.lester https://www.instagram.com/charlesandpatricialester/ http://pinterest.com/charlesandpatricialester

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When colours just sing … #sunsetpink #luxurypurple…



When colours just sing …

#sunsetpink #luxurypurple #handpleatedsilk #luxurycouture

Charles and Patricia Lester Social http://twitter.com/CPLester1 http://www.facebook.com/charles.patricia.lester https://www.instagram.com/charlesandpatricialester/ http://pinterest.com/charlesandpatricialester

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#sunsetpink #luxurypurple… appeared first on Designer Collections of Charles and Patricia Lester.

A new silk velvet rug in the process of being created by…



A new silk velvet rug in the process of being created by @georginalester using a selection of hand painted silk velvet pieces left over from making various jackets and coats.

#luxurysilkrug #luxuryrugs #luxuryinteriordesign #bespokeinteriors #artinteriors

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Colourful wedding

Colourful wedding

The enjoyment of colour should be part of everyone’s life and if it is colour that a bride wants for her wedding then we can create a gown in any colour that she has a passion to be married in.  The traditional white gown often ends up in the back of a wardrobe – not so with one of colour.  A colourful wedding gown can be worn many times without being out of place at all sorts of functions.
A colourful wedding
A colourful wedding
 

St. Tewdrics House

St. Tewdrics House is a fabulous venue for a wedding and certainly we had a lovely day there on Sunday for their Wedding Fayre.  It was sunny and very lively all day long with an interesting mix of exhibitors from the exotic like Jeff Banks’ very smart men’s wear, Alison Tod’s hats and beautiful flowers by Catherine Gray.  I will add more as I remember them although I can’t remember the guy who was tempting us with his pies! http://www.sttewdricshouse.co.uk/ http://www.catherinegrayflowers.co.uk/ https://www.jeffbanksstores.co.uk
St. Tewdrics House - Chepstow
St. Tewdrics House – Chepstow
Colour combinations blues and lime
Colour combinations blues and lime

Colour theme wedding – mother of the bride

It used not to be that common to have a colour theme for a wedding, but more and more people are wanting colourful weddings.  We have made very few wedding dresses in the traditional white or cream.  Colour sings of someone’s personality and on the practical side it means that the dress can be worn over and over again.  And the mother of the bride should delight in wearing a glowing colour for herself too. I have focused this first group on the colours of the sea and fresh lime. Unusual wedding dresses
Mother of the Bride
Mother of the Bride
The perfect hat
The perfect hat
http://alisontod.blogspot.co.uk/ We have known Alison for a very long time and it has been a delight to watch her become such a talented bespoke milliner.  So in this small country town a mother of the bride can have something made for her that is rare and beautiful from our studios and then get a bespoke hat to compliment her outfit. Exotic wedding gowns

Mother of the groom

mother of the groom
mother of the groom
The mothers of the bride and groom are still young enough to look elegant, feminine and it is their day too.  Choosing an outfit often seems to be traumatic when it should be fun.  It is the best possible excuse for the mother of the groom to re-look at herself and realise that she can still turn heads and so she should.
Wedding hats and flowers
wedding hats and flowers
wedding hats and flowers
There should be a sense of adventure and excitement in choosing a hat for a wedding – and flowers.  Personally I would prefer living plants that I can plant out in the garden as memories but mostly people love their bouquets to be unpretentious and abstract these days intertwined with wild flowers and wispy clouds of babies’ breath.
Grandmothers, sisters, cousins, friends and aunts all enjoying a colourful wedding.
red purples and pink theme
red purples and pink theme
It is becoming more fashionable to have a colourful theme for a wedding – and persuading everyone to wear one colour is sometimes tricky, so giving a broader base of colours that somehow work together is a really good idea.  There has to be enough variety that the grandmother, sister, friend, cousin and aunt to be able to find their own distinctive tone of colour. And my final picture says it all – the maker of the hats – Alison Tod, the flowers – Catherine Gray – and my best friend who was glad to see me home after a long day at St. Tewdrics House.
The perfect wedding planning
The perfect wedding planning
There will be a new selection in Liberty’s in London in a week ready for Spring celebrations.  Not that I can manage to think of Spring when it is so cold here in Wales.  

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The beauty of Emeralds

The beauty of Emeralds – nature’s colour

My passion for butterflies and moths was my first thought when a colour scheme of emerald was requested this week.  Nature’s colour palette provides us with such an extraordinary variety of colours and shapes.  Butterflies and moths show so many that are perfectly beautiful and also can be rather strange.  Look at the wings with a microscope and you see the amazing neatly layered tiles of iridescence. As for the beauty of emeralds – the gemstones – just perfectly glorious colours and rather mysterious in the way the light plays with the different tones of green.
The beauty of Emeralds
The beauty of Emeralds
The butterfly shown in this group is one of many with this name – as well as moths.  Now for the fabrics: On the right-hand side is pleated silk that has been painted in tones of emerald and then printed in order to remove the colour in the pattern.  It has then been hand pleated. On the bottom left is a heavy satin painted in rich greens Centre top is a picture of a section of satin which after being painted has been hand painted with a type of bleach to remove colour.

Pre-Raphaelite art inspiration

Lady and the roses luxury interior art
Lady and the roses luxury interior art
My title picture, lady and the roses, is a lovely example of Pre-Raphaelite art.  Perfect from which to draw inspiration for our luxury interior art. The bed cover is made up of squares of silk hand painted and pleated.  The backing is a deeper colour on crepe-back silk satin with a gold stripe print. The cushions are a mixture of cotton velvet double printed.  The orange cushion is made out of vintage silk velvet which we printed with a gold design. The fabric in the bottom left-hand corner is some green damask printed with gold.
Lady in Emerald green - textile art for the home
Lady in Emerald green – textile art for the home
Another fine painting by Rossetti – such an amazing clear green dress so beautifully painted. The main picture shows another piece of pleated silk with a phantom print. Bottom right are snippets of silk – the bolder print in the centre is ‘shadow printed’ to give the illusion of depth to the gold print.  The second is a piece of silk noile that has a daintier print in gold. The left-hand corner is rich coloured satin in tones of green with highlights of tan.

Nature’s gift of inspiration for textures and colours

Leaf textures inspiration for textile designs
Leaf textures inspiration for textile designs
We constantly draw inspiration from nature and the texture of these leaves as well as the colours are nature’s gift of art. Silk hand painted and pleated is the main picture. Bottom left-hand is satin in deep green with a silver print.  The design of this was inspired by acanthus leaves.
Raindrops on leaves nature's jewells
Raindrops on leaves nature’s jewels
What a glorious colour combination in these leaves that have been be-jewelled with raindrops? The main picture is a small rug created by Georgina using a traditional method of rag rug making, but instead of rags she uses strips of velvet.  This is the most sensual rug on which you put your bare feet!  A wonderful colour palette of vibrant slashes of emerald green, rich purples and hints of rust turns this rug into what we call ‘floor art’. The fabrics in the corner are cotton/viscose satin – painted and printed.
Yucca inspiration for colour and texture for luxury sensual home
Yucca inspiration for colour and texture for luxury sensual home
I love the colours in the shadows of plants. The main picture is of the silk pleated bedspread with a mix of emerald green velvet lying on the silk.

Luxury interior textile art

Luxury velvet cushions Luxury velvet cushions Emerald cotton velvet cushions, a silk pleated bedspread, a table cloth in mushroom ‘gill’ coloured satin and a green ceramic panther.  The colours are captured in the bevel glass screen made by our daughter Georgina.  This adds an interesting dimension of the hard medium of glass to the sensual luxury of the interior textile art pieces. Painted Bubble art inspiration for interior design Painted Bubble art inspiration for interior design Bubbles intrigue me – the extraordinary way that the colours move in marbled patterns, change emphasis of colour,  gradually almost completely disappear and finally pop – it is gone. The main picture is of a patchwork velvet bedspread made out of many hues of emerald, with touches of purple and golden green. The silk satin, in the lower corner, is painted in a rainbow mix of muted colours and printed with a design inspired by butterflies and chrysanthemums.
Luxurious emerald green velvet bedcover
Luxurious emerald green velvet bed-cover
The beauty of emerald as a colour with all it variations are shown in this decadently luxurious bedspread.  These bedspreads, bed-covers, throws and comforters, as well as cushions and pillows, can be made to commission in any colour-way to go with a chosen themed interior design project.  
Pleated silver velvet for extravagant touch of luxury
Pleated silver velvet for extravagant touch of luxury
The pleated velvet is very difficult to achieve but once done it is really beautiful to wear – it is wonderfully luxurious as a comforter.
Luxury velvet throw for bespoke interior design
Luxury velvet throw for bespoke interior design
  https://charlespatricialester.com/product/dramatic-velvet-bedcover/ We have a large and varied selection of interior art pieces and accessories ranging from very large wall hangings made out of the pleated silk, to bedspreads, throws, cushions, lavender pouches.  We are constantly chasing  new ideas  such as quilted throws and some new experiments with crushed and quilted silks and velvets. We are always exploring new ways to colour and texture fabrics using craftsmanship rather than the modern way with digital printing and other sophisticated technology.  Our work is about the skills of hand-crafting using traditional techniques as a base then pushing out the boundaries by ignoring tradition and taking other routes.  There is always something new to learn and develop and we are never averse to making mistakes because those mistakes often lead to a new and exciting process or skill.
Super luxury velvet quilted and beaded
Super luxury velvet quilted and beaded
For some more ideas and images with details see: http://www.charlespatricialester.com For our fashion collection – there is a selection in Liberty’s in London as well as a huge variety at our studios.  We welcome visitors who want to see more of what we do and happy for them to ‘play’ with the clothes and fabrics. https://www.libertylondon.com/uk/home  

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We are so much more than fashion…

We are so much more than fashion and trends and things that date us or our style. I don’t just mean as a business, I mean as women. We are more than fashionable accessories, trendy clothes and designer label perfection. We are more than the icons of glamour projected by style magazines. So much more.

Any woman who has tried the online dating scenes will no doubt have been confronted with the barrage of men’s fantasies of luscious arm candy that make their egos shine and their pot bellies and flabby spirits transform into ripped super-hero six packs. Men are of course more than muscles and wallets just as we are more than arm candy.

Any woman who has clashed with glass ceilings or those clusters of suits who rule boardrooms and boy’s clubs, know only too well that we have to be more than lipstick and high heels to be successful.

Our craving to be seen for who we are, means we have to find those people who have a true appreciation for the strength of the feminine spirit. We are so much more than how we appear however what we wear is an open declaration of who we are inside – boldly individual and authentically true to ourselves. We have a choice –  following our heart or hiding our identity behind a mask of conformity. There is no wrong or right way. We are who we are. Be that as followers of the people we admire or lone warriors traversing this world as independent thinkers carving paths where no-one has been before.

The luxury of being in a business such as ours means that we get to meet the superheroines of our era. They are not always the ones that people will think of first but more often the unsung champions of a more traditional existence far from the celebrated worlds of stage or screen.

The media and journalists always clamour to spotlight the rich and famous; the celebrities who are perpetually primed to be pimped out to a hungry audience lost in their own fantasies of fame and fortune. However we as women are so much more than the paparazzi flashes of glinting smiles posing behind the masks of falsities and fakery. Our role in life is so much more than perfectly-posed toned thighs peeking out of fashionably split skirts.

We as women are so much more than that.

There are of course many stereotypical moments of mopping brows, cradling a child, nurturing, healing, cleaning, rocking, cooking and mothering. The passionate lover, the Amazonian warrior, the lioness and the vulnerable little girl who will also all be campaigning for change, standing up for what is right and supporting causes that are far more than the nucleus of her little family.

We are the heart of mankind living in service to our collective empowerment, freedom and love. We are so much more than expensive silks and high maintenance beauty treatments but we appreciate the hours of love and labour that has gone into crafting superlatively beautiful perfection.

We are the keepers of dreams. The artist painting visions of a happy world full of joy and peace while singing of love, healing and compassion. We get up and strive for better despite the betrayals, failings, the quirks and idiosyncrasies of our modern existence. We hold the space for all that is good despite being surrounded by wars that rage for oil, gold and egoic supremacy. We are so much more than baby bibs, girly sleepovers and mascara. We are certainly more than botox and boob jobs.

We are the bringers of change. The champions of human spirit waging war against fashion that sentences us to years of self doubt, questionable self-belief and feelings of inadequacy because it is not in our nature to just conform. Too much of the fashion world wants us to don the beige uniforms of black, grey and middle road mediocrity. We deserve colour.

Here we celebrate the indomitable beings who grace our presence with their formidable ability to succeed no matter what. The magnificent women who lead the way by standing centre stage in their own worlds commanding respect just by being themselves. Every day we celebrate the wrinkles, scars and beautifully perfect imperfections curving their way through life as they strive for perfection with remarkable resilience and good humour. Their beautiful vulnerability revels in the knowledge that pain and grief can always transform into love, smiles and hugs again.

We are so much more than fashion trends engineered by corporate giants designed to make money. We are so much more than the discarded mannequins lying on the heap of cliches and unfashionable ideas, make-do-and-mend trends waiting for a vintage revival giving us permission to smile and shine once again.

An empowered  woman does not shrink from stepping centre stage to perform the lead role of her own choosing displaying every facet of her magnificence. As she steps into all that she can be, she helps others to step up and rise with her. A successful woman not only strives to achieve her dreams but she takes everyone else with her too.

Our clothes are a part of who we are. They are expressions of our inner being that is always going to be colourful, dynamic and pulsing with love and vitality. We are brilliantly vibrant human beings after all. The clothes we wear illustrate how we feel about ourselves and the role we play. They can be filled with kaleidoscopic fires of passion and determination or the subtle reflections of dancing light of free skies and open oceans. We can hide or display our truths. Our choice. Our path. A liberated woman will dare to bare the colour of her soul. Her heart on her sleeve, the fire in her belly and her lust for life. We love to help those women shine.

Oriental Inspiration

Oriental Inspiration for interior textiles

Oriental inspiration around our home
Oriental inspiration around our home
The current project has been inspired by an extraordinary gallery in San Francisco introduced to me by a friend.  The Zentner Collection specialising in Asian and Oriental Art and Antiques is an amazing place to find oriental inspiration. Another source of inspiration is from a study of the origins of Liberty’s in London. http://www.zentnercollection.com For an interior designer who has such a theme then these pieces that we have created will act as a sumptuous foil for exotic oriental antiques and art. So to help me gather my thoughts I have wandered around our home and taken photographs of bits and pieces. The antiques are either originally from China and Japan, or like the tea-chest something that is inspired by oriental furniture.  A number of years ago we went to Hong Kong and bought some interesting artefacts. And Georgina, our daughter, visited China when she was just 18.  With our credit card in her pocket she bought some fabulous things that now adorn our home.  The crates arrived carrying the carved wooden Tang horse in those lovely faded beaten up colours, the fine cloisonné jars, the carved dogs.  Most of all she brought back some enduring memories.
Chinese carved wood 'Tang' horse
Chinese carved wood ‘Tang’ horse
Shown with this Chinese carved wood ‘Tang’ horse is a wall hanging created out of pleated silk.  The fabric has been painted and pleated by hand.  It is then intricately stitched into abstract swirls of rich gold autumn colours.  The same pleated silk fabric has been turned into luxurious cushions.  
Golden luxury textiles for the home
Golden luxury textiles for the home
This group has an extraordinary picture of a veined hydrangea flower – one of Charles’s photographs that is so beautiful in its simplicity.
Autumn leaves inspire textures for fabric
Autumn leaves inspire textures for fabric
One idea for this project was to focus on the colours of autumn.   These leaves were just outside our back door and they just looked incredibly beautiful so I took a photograph. I then went into the studio to look for colour and texture partners. I was excited to find ones that had  textures that would work well with different aspects of Oriental luxury furniture and artefacts.  The lower left hand piece of fabric is a new experiment which is crushed evenly, not randomly to give it an interesting dimension.  The muted sheen on the fabric works well with unpolished wood. It is not easy to achieve, so there will not be many pieces like these but this piece worked so well with the tones and texture of the leaves.
Luxury velvet crush quilted with beads
Luxury velvet crush quilted with beads
This is another experiment – however I might never do again because it took many weeks of hand work because all the quilting and beading was done by hand.  I have two pieces like this which will be turned into very decadent luxury throws.  The little Japanese cabinet is a delight – inlaid with egg-shells, unexpectedly we found this in New Zealand and just had to bring it home.
Interior textiles - hand crafted in Wales
Interior textiles – hand crafted in Wales
Opera Iris props - a Japanese story in music and colour
Opera Iris props – a Japanese story in music and colour
Choosing the autumn colours as a theme I realised that the ‘Sun’ doll from the opera Iris, that we costumed for Opera Holland Park a few years ago, would make a perfect centre piece for this tableau of gold textiles.
Sunset grasses inspires rich browns in velvet and silks
Sunset grasses inspires rich browns in velvet and silks
When the sun has almost set it leaves a touch of sunshine on the tops of the grasses that is quite magical.

Interior art inspiration in rocks

Newport cliffs - West Wales - interior art inspiration
Newport cliffs – West Wales – interior art inspiration
The colours in the rocks on the cliffs in Newport West Wales inspired Charles to do a series of photographs.  What a wonderful resource of inspiration for our interior art textiles.  An echo of colours of tarnished bronze and distressed painted furniture.

Super-yacht interior luxury

Luxury silk wall hangings for a super yacht interior
Luxury silk wall hangings for a super yacht interior
Terracotta pleated silk wall hanging
Terracotta pleated silk wall hanging
 
Faded rose colours for a soft feminine interior theme
Faded rose colours for a soft feminine interior theme
For a gentle calm atmosphere – soft weak tea colours and willow leaves echo the delicate colours that a bright pink rose turns as it fades into crumpled petals – so beautiful.
Antique Victorian screen transformed into an art piece for a contemporary home
Antique Victorian screen transformed into an art piece for a contemporary home
Choosing the screen for this colour theme – the darker shades of celadon – merging into seaweed, old bronze and tarnished silver.

Oriental inspiration – carved jade

Misted lily picture inspiration for the softer shades of celadon
Misted lily picture inspiration for the softer shades of celadon
Another of Charles’s photographs has the perfect tones of colour for the story of oriental inspiration in carved jade – those delicate tones of celadon with echoes of deeper shadows highlighting the softness of the colour.
Soft velvet luxury throw for a feminine bedroom
Soft velvet luxury throw for a feminine bedroom
Velvet is the most sensual fabric for luxurious throws and pillows – luxury to curl up in.
Neutral colours for a modern interior scheme - then a touch of real colour as a highlight.
Neutral colours for a modern interior scheme – then a touch of real colour as a highlight.
What exactly is the colour ‘greiges’ – I designed a group of colours a few years ago and in searching for a name I decided on ‘British rail coffee’ – a nasty brew that was a greyish beige colour.  The background for this cushion is one of Georgina’s amazing rugs made out of velvet using the traditional rag rug technique.  These really are a decadent luxury – delicious for bare feet!
Oriental inspiration – work in progress
Laughing Buddha Oriental Inspiration
Laughing Buddha Oriental Inspiration
When doing the research for costuming the opera ‘Iris’ I found that the Buddhist monks and nuns, who had given up all worldly goods, had nothing to wear other than rags donated by their patrons.  If their patron was an ordinary working man – his patched ‘kesa’ would be a patchwork of heavily worn and stressed textiles.  However if the patron was a wealthy person, then the kesa would be made, still in patches, but of lavish silk brocades.  So our laughing Buddha is wearing a luxurious patchwork of printed silk velvets.  I need to study the form again because I seem to remember that the symbolism and order of the patches have special significance.  When my memory is refreshed I will add the details to the blog.
Luxury statement interior art
Luxury statement interior art
 
Oriental lacquer inspirations for classical interior design
Oriental lacquer inspirations for classical interior design
I love the richness that a background of black gives to painted lacquer furniture and ornaments.                        

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