Crane Estate a set of gilt-leather panels. Verentuil and Palmette polychrome

Best Wishes and Happy New Year 🙂

Thank you all for reading and following this blog.

I wish you all a happy and healthy year 2022

Our first leathers this year go to Crane Estate near Boston they were ordered by our long time distributors and friends from Belfry Historic Consultants Inc

Crane Estate is impressive by its architecture and spectacular landscape and as if this is not enough it Crane has quite an unusual history, go and find out

Its an honor to supplie the Estate with a set of gilt-leather panels.

“Courtesy of Jay Burnham Photography”

Verentuil and Palmette gilt-leather in a polychrome version in accordance to submitted colour strike off’s

Verentuil Polychrome

Palmette Polychrome

I hope to able to post some pictures of the upholstered item at a later date.

Checkout Spicyfrog64 its … Lutson 2.0 link bellow.

As always


What we do too :

Gilt-leather Larvic Museum Oslo

Gilt-leather reproductions made for Larvic Museum Oslo.

The choosen design was the Moncla in a poly-chrome version.

The pre-antiqued panels drying in the workshop

Leif Arvidsen of Lages AB, Sweden,
The upholsterer with whom we have worked on many occasions,
here in charge of the Larvic chairs.

The set of chairs as to be seen in Larvic Museum Oslo

As Always


Chairs for the Nebraska State Capitol

This was a considerable order we made for the Nebraska State Capitol. It came to us via our distinguished distributor J Buscemi from Classic Revivals Inc

Several moulds had to be cut and over a hunderd panels had to be made.

All the chairs of the Governors hearing room which dated from the 1920’s had to be restored and the leather coverings replaced including those form the Councelors chairs and the Governors chair.

Some pictures I’ve got from the net for you to appreciate

A chair form the audiance room

A Councelors chair and the chair of the Governor

Unfortunately the pictures are of not too great a quality
A seat
The governors seat back

As Always


EAC Days: Postponed JournĂ©es JEMA: AnnulĂ©es

Due to the pandemic for the second time in a row the European Artistic Carfts Days from 6 – 11 April are postponed.

I hope we will be able to open our workshop to the public later this year.

For the sake of the visitors we made a series of framed details of the Rose & Tulip Border.

Detail Rose & Tulip Border
Detail Rose & Tulip Border
Detail Rose & Tulip Border

In these troubled times my thoughts are with you, stay safe and keep your spirits high

As always


Bespoke Moncla II

In the previous posting I showed some pictures of an unfinished Polychrome Moncla Panel.

This posting is kind of before / after topic.

Painted yet unfinished panel
Finisched panel, antiqued and waxed

Detail of the unfinshed panel
Detail of the antiqued and finished panel



Bespoke Moncla,

This is a classic 18th century design and since the very beginning of Lutson a compagnon in our collection.

Bespoke as most of the leathers we produce, indeed you have your say.

This panel is not finished yet, but it gives an idea where we’re heading to.

Here some details

For the pictures I use a Olympus camera in automatique mode, I don’t manipulate the picture afterwards.

Soon to come, the finished panel. I understand the general excitment on the web …

As Always Yours


Plaisance a poly-chrome Gilt-leather panel

The Plaisance was inpired by a circa 1750 design which is to be seen in the Museum Plantin Moretus, Antwerp. The Plaisance is very close to the original panel we magnefied the design, the result is that the flowers are large, thus more detailed and the stems and leaves are stronger and more detailed as well.

— The sample panel was made over 25 years ago it’s to be seen at John Nelson Inc our Miami distributor whom placed the order.

— Here under the panel we supplied J. Nelson Inc.

— The A to Z of the painting of a poly-chrome panel

— Above: The panel is embossed, gilded and antiqued this is the basis on which we start painting.

— The basis colour of the leaves is applied.

— All the basis colours of the flowers are applied

— Again several stages further: the flowers have been painted and the leaves had some shades applied.

— Now the nerving of the leaves and highlights on leaves and stems are painted.

— To bond the colours and downtone the gilding we antique the panels once more

— The panel on the left side of the picture above is a new panel the one on the right side is the original panel… All done, now packing !

Ready for shipping, thank you for reading me if you wish to contact me please do, Contact John Nelson, website :

As always


Get that gilt-leather right !!


First of all one has to understand a customers wishes, a good briefing is essential.


This understanding needs to get visualised as well as possible in the sample panel we will produce.


When the sample panel is made, one can still work the subject and make sublte alterings to  come closer to the customers wishes.

Those are the 3 major steps.

This is one and the same Verne panel going through the 3 stages.

First: A version in which honney colours are dominant, note that there is but little contrast in the panel.

Second: We added a burgundy and a greenish colour in the central theme and corners. This panel is more contrasted.

Thirth: To reduce the contrast and to give the panel a subdued feel we added a coat of antiquing.

Verne: Honney colours

Verne + burgundy and green

Verne + antiquing

Here we are, the panel can still evolve but only by adding paint or antiquing. There is no way back …

The Verne is one of our larger designs 102 x 78 cm it’s made out of two parts.

As Always




Cuirs DorĂ©s ” Cuirs de Cordoue” un Art EuropĂ©en.

Cuirs DorĂ©s “cuirs de Cordoue” un Art EuropĂ©en.

Jean-Pierre Fournet

Editions Monelle – Hayot


This book will inform you in the technical matters of the gilt leather trade. Monsieur Fournet retraces for your benefit the geographical evolution of the trade and the fashion of the giltleather tapestries. He travelled for decades to see the ancient leathers in situ.  Mr. Fournet knows which design sits in the cellars of which museum because he was there! He indexed and photographed and eventually told the conservators what sort of gilt leather they had in stock.

The nearly 400 pages counting book is just out, I don’t doubt that it will become a work of reference in this specific field.

Definitely worthwhile, today, available in French, I hope soon an English edition we see daylight.

As Always



A Matter of Choice

“la Chapelle des Gicons – la  Mère Eglise”

It’s just a small Roman chapel that sits on a “promontoire” which means a dream location… in the French Alps. From the outside one will note that the tower has no tiles, nor slates, but is built in solid masonry, in contrast, the radiating chapels which have thatched roofing. The strongest next to the most care demanding roofs united in one building …

Inside the chapel there are two Alters one specifically dedicated to Marie.

Principal Alter

Side Alter: of “Marie” the dominant colour is red which is unusual

Meanwhile the Alters have been dismantled, Stored and have been restored.

The principal Alter

The Alter of Marie

Samples for the colouring and the metallic backgrounds had to be made for the Architects of Historic Monuments to choose from. At this stage the samples focus on the metallic ground, 6 samples  were produced in 3 different metallic grounds. From each of these metallic grounds a sample was painted with a red flower and one with bleu flower when the metallic ground is chosen it’s easy to adapt the colours afterwards. The painting is in the early 18 century tradition.

Classic Gilding









Flat Silver-gilding

And Flat Silver-gilding with a yellowish varnish

This is where we are presently and awaiting the dicision of “les Monuments de France and la Drac” and who else ?

Anyone’s Guess

As Always