Chinoiserie – My “Asian Flare”

Chinoiserie is a French term, signifying “Chinese-esque” I’ve always called it my “Asian Flare” but now that I know there is a special name for it I feel so much more sophisticated.  So what says Chinoiserie more than a Chinese dragon? Not much! Recently I was able to work on a project using some beautiful dragon printed linen from No.9 Thompson’s’ Dynasty Collection and also received another request to do a project in Schumacher’s Chiang Mai Dragon, but both of these fabrics run about $150 a yard. Ouch! So I started looking around for some reasonably priced dragon fabric. I looked and looked, it is just not out there. Hint, Hint, I think I see a niche in the fabric world that needs to be filled. So what are we budget minded designers to do until then?  Don’t be discouraged we still have options. We can still use these beautiful fabrics, just in a smaller way. Hunt for discounted samples, remnants, or even someones scraps as long as it is large enough to make a pillow, cover a lampshade,or even upholster a seat cushion, your in business. These fabric.s are so bold even a small piece can make a big impact. So no matter what your budget don’t shy away from a little Chinoiserie!

Here are some great fabrics you might want to look for. This large scale pattern with a huge dragon centered on every yard is one of my favorites.

ENTER THE DRAGONS536913_10151455348646019_515930353_n734573_10151455348666019_941317238_nThe surrounding photos are of a set of pillows and drapes I made from Enter the Dragons. With such a pricey fabric I tried to use every scarp. The borders that were cut off to center the pillow were reused to border the pillows and as curtain trim.2047_10151455351206019_998279816_n

Have a look at a few more rooms using this colorful fabric.

Jim Thompson No. 9 Dyansty Collection

Jim Thompson No. 9 Dynasty Collection


Need something with not so grand a scale? Check out these lovely prints by Schumacher that are available in both fabric and wall covering.

Schumacher's -Chiang Mai Dragon comes in these five colorways.

Schumacher’s -Chiang Mai Dragon comes in these five colorways.

chinoiserie-chic-chiang-mai-dragon-fabric-lov-L-MOL2xd chinoiserie-chic-chiang-mai-dragon-fabric-lov-L-udJFsH chinoiserie-chic-chiang-mai-dragon-fabric-lov-L-gctZXp

If you want more of a monochromatic look Scalamandre’s Chi’en Dragon might be more your style.

Scalamandre - Chi'en Dragon comes in five colorways

Scalamandre – Chi’en Dragon comes in five colorways


  1. Looks amazing! Especially Dynasty’s Enter the Dragon… (Very cool name too) wish it wasn’t $150/yard

    • Enter the Dragon is even prettier in person,the linen looks hand painted but I know what you mean about the price. When I worked with it, I was so afraid to make the first cut, what if I made a mistake? The pressure!

  2. Lisa in AL says:

    Love the graphic print orange curtains!

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