Fornasetti II Collection for Cole & Son

Maison&Objet 2013: clouds, umbrellas, flying machines and suits of armour are among the motifs in this collection by Italian design house Fornasetti for English wallpaper brand Cole & Son (+ slideshow).

The collection also includes architectural friezes and borders and is designed so that different papers and motifs can be combined.

"I was thinking of doing something a little more than a normal wallpaper, to give the opportunity to have something to stick on the wall with some more fantasy," Barnaba Fornasetti told Dezeen in an exclusive interview.

"So I decided to do vertical rolls and horizontal rolls, and rolls that can be combined together. For example, we have the clouds that can be combined with balustrades and flying machines. You can choose to make only clouds with the balustrade or only a piece of the flying machine with clouds."

The motifs are taken from the Fornasetti archive of drawings created by Barnaba's father, Piero Fornasetti: "I chose things and I mixed them together, and I changed the colour, I changed the dimensions."

This year is the 100th anniversary of the birth of Piero Fornasetti.

English hand-made wallpaper brand Cole & Son will launch the collection at Maison&Object in Paris later this month. It follows an earlier collection created by Fornasetti for the brand in 2008.

Here's some info from Cole & Son:

Cole & Son presents the Fornasetti II Collection at Maison&Objet in Paris 18th- 22nd January 2013.

Comprising fifteen designs, Cole & Son’s new collection follows the success of the first Fornasetti range, launched in 2008, delivering a repertoire of magical themes within a collection of designs that are at once iconic and covetable.

Fornasetti II takes a bold step in wallpaper design, transcending the obvious and transforming eclectic and whimsical drawings into a truly stunning array of co-ordinating wallpapers in an exciting range of colours and styles. Eccentric motifs of fantastical flying machines, architectural details, playful monkeys, keys and owls all evoke a theatrical and magical space, while the use of wide width friezes, borders, digital panels and double width papers gives this collection an unparalleled diversity in the way in which it can be used.

Commenting on the new collection, Barnaba Fornasetti stated: “Pablo Neruda once described my father as the magician of precious and precise magic and I think that this decorative collection beautifully captures the magic essence of the Fornasetti world”.

Macchine Volanti

Fornasetti II Collection for Cole & Son

Floating on a new version of Nuvole, these wondrous flying machines hang amongst the clouds evoking the romantic New World of scientific exploration.

The three colourways are drawn in two shimmering versions of silver and bronze on pale blue and midnight skies and a third more playful colouring of red and yellow on a neutral sky.

This design has been devised so that it directly co-ordinates with both Nuvolette and Balaustra and is a total of 137cm wide, thereby being sold as a set comprising two wide width rolls of 68.5cm each.


Fornasetti II Collection for Cole & Son

Nuvolette, a beautifully rendered cloudy sky effect has been designed as a smaller more manageable version of Cole & Son’s existing Nuvole design.

Presented in three tranquil colourways of neutral, pale blue and midnight to coordinate with Macchine Volanti and Balaustra, a fourth colouring of black and white creates a more striking and stormy effect.

This design has a total width of 137cm and as such is being sold as a set comprising two wide width rolls of 68.5cm each.


Fornasetti II Collection for Cole & Son

Balaustra creates a striking trompe-l’oeil effect of a marble or stone balustrade sitting against a backdrop of Nuvolette.

Designed to be hung horizontally along the bottom of a wall, this is the first of Cole & Son’s friezes and is an exciting and novel approach to using wallpaper.

Conceived as a direct coordinate with both Nuvolette and Macchine Volanti, in neutral, pale blue and midnight, this border offers intriguing opportunities for interior decoration. Balaustra is 68.5cm high and sold on a 10 metre roll.

Chiavi Segrete

Fornasetti II Collection for Cole Son

Introducing two popular Fornasetti motifs, Chiavi Segrete combines mysterious gold and silver keys hanging within a dense privet hedge. At once lyrical and surreal Chiavi Segrete has been produced as a pattern easily useable on four walls. Three softer, more neutral colourways with gold, silver and ghostly white keys suspended within frosty white, grey-blue and pale neutral leaves create a cooler more elegant feel, whilst the more dramatic dark grey and forest green leaves with their gilver keys add a touch of theatre.

This design repeats on a single roll at 68.5cm wide.


Featuring a family of wide-eyed owls, (a favourite theme of Piero Fornasetti,) Nottambule is a charming and humorous frieze, which can be hung either at the top of a room, or above a dado rail. Offered in 5 colourings of ink engraved owls with backdrops of lively red and yellow, as well as two sophisticated neutrals and a more secretive midnight.

The border measures 40cm high and is sold on a standard 10m roll.


Featuring a variety of umbrellas, riding whips and walking sticks collected by Piero Fornasetti over the years and depicted on umbrella stands and various other decorative products, Promenade is the second of Cole & Son’s wide width friezes, designed to be hung around the bottom of a room, or beneath the dado rail.

Sold as a single 10 metre roll at 68.5cm wide.


Originally created as a decorative folding screen, Uccelli was first devised as a wallpaper for a luxury hotel on the on the Argentario Peninsula in Tuscany. Due to popular demand we have reproduced it here in two seasonal colourways of bright summer colour and cooler wintery tones.

Designed as a repeating panel at 1.04 metres wide by 2.8 metres high, the wallpaper is sold as a 52 cm wide paper that joins to create the full width and height.


The first of two architectural designs, Procuratie, which takes its name from the well known building facades of St Marks Square in Venice, is composed of two rows of classical arches drawn in a simple intaglio style. Produced in four neutral shades Procuratie repeats at 68.5cm wide and is sold on 10 metre roll.

Procuratie e Scimmie

Fornasetti II Collection for Cole & Son

The amusing companion to Procuratie features two monkeys wandering amongst pillars and arches.

Offered in the four directly co-ordinating colours of Procuratie, the monkeys are picked out in shades of pale blue, soft gold, regal purple and black and white.

This design also repeats at 68.5cm wide and is sold on a 10 metre roll.


Fornasetti II Collection for Cole & Son

The fish theme appears in some of the earliest Fornasetti work, and this design adopts some of the motifs used on decorative trays. Picked for their whimsical and naive appearance, Acquario’s clownish fish set on soft washed backgrounds of pale cobalt, neutral, charcoal and deep-sea blue, repeat at 68.5cm wide and are sold on a 10 metre roll.


Comprising three colourways – black, white and neutral, turquoise and neutral and the original colouring of red and yellow, Teatro originally designed for umbrella stands in the mid 1950s, features boxes occupied by elegant theatre-goers in evening dress. This wonderfully conversational wallpaper creates a witty and flamboyant faux interior, perfectly in keeping with the Fornasetti spirit and ethos. It repeats at 68.5cm wide and is sold on a 10 metre roll.


Fornasetti II Collection for Cole & Son

Featuring an assortment of old fashioned pen nibs in an array of burnished metallics, Pennini has been designed as a frieze, to be hung horizontally around a room. At 52cm high Pennini is offered in a sophisticated palette of parchment with iridescent aquas and blues, charcoal with bronze and pewter, linen with golds and coppers and powder blue with silvers, golds and gilvers.


Fornasetti II Collection for Cole & Son

Comprising a number of well proportioned trompe l’oeil niches, Nicchie was originally conceived as a decorative screen in the 1950’s. Re-structured to work as a wallpaper, this unmistakeably Fornasetti crosshatched design features a surreal assortment of mandolins, fruit, keys and hourglasses in graphic tones of black on white, charcoal and parchment with highlights of red, gold and bronze.

This design repeats at 68.5cm wide on a 10 metre roll.

Magia Domestica

Fornasetti II Collection for Cole & Son

The most whimsical and magical design within this collection, Magia Domestica, with its suit of armour, invitingly open door, bookcases and drawn curtains creates a world within a world. Produced as ten panels all at 52cm wide, the entire design is modular, repeatable and can be put together in any configuration.

Sold as either a complete set of 10 panels, or as a choice of two 5 panel sets.


Fornasetti II Collection for Cole & Son

Both Piero (a member of Ciclisti Milanesi) and Barnaba a promoter of cycling, have been bicycle enthusiasts from an early age, the humble bicycle has re-appeared here as a witty 52cm high frieze. Multiplette features nine cyclists pedalling along on a single multi-saddled bicycle in ‘comic-strip’ striped jerseys and caps. Produced in nostalgic colourways of red and navy, and a more colourful primary red, blue and yellow, this border is sold on a 7.5metre roll, comprising 5 complete ‘bicycles’.