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The production and costume designer lends her luxurious eye to the home


Known and awarded for her lush and spectacular production and costume designs for films including Moulin Rouge!, Australia and The Great Gatsby, Designer Catherine Martin has translated the lavish creativity that led to the designs for the latter film and made them available beyond the Hollywood screen. The designer’s vision for a collection of textiles and wallcoverings that speak to the glamour and decadence of the Art Deco period has been brought to life via a partnership with Mokum Textiles.


Raised on Deco
One could say Martin’s career choice and aptitude for style was a natural progression of her upbringing. As her mother was French and her father Australian, Martin grew up dividing her time between two places some only ever dream of visiting. In her notes on her new collection, the designer speaks of being “lucky enough to live for extended periods of time in an Art Deco house built by a millionaire Argentinian.” She remembers it as “a house full of the glamour, romance and playfulness of French Art Deco,” albeit with “whimsical electrical wiring and slightly dubious renovations” carried out by her grandfather who purchased the home just after World War II.

One can certainly see such influences in the textiles and wallcoverings that mark Martin’s latest collection with Mokum. And Martin points to her second home of New York as having infused the love for French Deco cultivated in her youth with “an appreciation for the energy and forward-moving spirit of American Art Deco.” It was her love for this distinctive period in design and experience with it on multiple continents that led to the development of Metropolis, Martin’s second collection with Mokum.


Decadent Designs
Martin set out to capture both the rich, decorative nature of Deco as well as the geometric modernism that defines its unmistakable patterning. Included among the textile collection are luxurious velvets in a bold printed floral and tonal graphic jacquard; embroidered linen; and trims that harken to the tailoring and fashionable pearl strands of the Deco period. The textiles have depth and true texture and are near luminous in their presentation. 

Coordinating wallpapers complete the luxurious line and utilize metallic inks and foil alongside textured surface prints. The coordinating products allow for truly decadent interiors where one can choose to make one upholstered piece or a solitary accent wall pop with drama and elegance or go for an over-the-top, completely coordinated setting. Either will turn heads with that particular flair of the Art Deco period, one that always manages to look modern while paying particular respect to an era gone by.


Special Touches
There are sometimes subtle choices that can set a design or a collection apart and Martin’s work with Mokum is a fine example of why such details make such a difference. For example, in her Cabaret design, the small scale, architecturally influenced geometric pattern uses lurex yarns for added glamour; the Charleston Pearls design is highlighted by small dimensional pearls within a suede-like ground; the Metropolis textile design, inspired by decorative Art Deco gates, features finely stitched viscose threads embroidered onto a 100% linen ground; and the Limelight Foil Wallpaper is printed onto a non-woven foil substrate to create a mirror-like geometric backdrop.

It’s such details that take the already decadent designs of the Metropolis collection and elevate them to an even higher level. Any fan of Martin’s rich creativity on-screen will recognize her distinct eye and affection for this particular period in design history in each of these new designs and in the careful manner in which they are brought into being.


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Lifestyle Magazine: The production and costume designer lends her luxurious eye to the home
The production and costume designer lends her luxurious eye to the home
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