I love antique textiles: their history, their patina, the care that went into their creation. But, white linens never really fit into my life (let alone the lives of my pets or husband!) or the decor of my home, so I began dyeing some of my collected pieces. And Atelier Linens ("Ah - tell- yay", French for an Artist Studio, specifically an Artist in the Decorative Arts) was born. Many of the linens I sell have been imported directly from France, where there is a long history of exquisitely embroidered linens made for women's dowries. The rest are American, but in the French-Style (or were, perhaps, purchased in Europe many years ago and then brought here).
Preparing antique linens for dyeing requires quite a lot of elbow-grease as they are generally quite dirty from decades of storage. All of that old dirt must come out before dyeing, so that means repeated cooking in my largest stockpot, numerous rinsings, then hanging to dry in the sun.
I dye in small batches, usually under a pound of linen at a time, using a modern, sophisticated color palette. My neutrals all have hints of color in them (for example, a grey with lilac undertones), and my colors all have grey or brown undertones. This results in a collection of colors that are easy to blend with each other, as well as with the neutrals. If you are unsure if two items you see on my website will blend, feel free to contact me. I am happy to take a picture of the items together to send to you and also give you my opinion about how well they coordinate.
Note: I have just begun to photograph items for the Atelier portion of my website. I will be adding more over the months of July and August, including some fabulous recent imports from France. Please check back!