Back in May 2020, in the midst of the first lockdown, Design News reported on a creative ray of light amid the gloom: Pierre Frey’s “Draw me a Wall” competition, which invited children aged 3–12 to design their own wallcoverings, as way of encouraging their artistic skills while they were away from school.
Now. the winning designs have been put into production, and the results are as colourful, varied as uplifting as you would expect. The fabrics and wide-width wallcoverings reflect the dreams and preoccupations of children – cars and kittens, sport and space-travel – and are full of humorous detail, from a proposal between two rabbits to an ambulance showing up at a skiing competition.
The artists’ names have been sweetly incorporated into the names of the products: pictured above (left to right) are ‘Les Palmes d’Alma’, an embroidered panel on linen (based on the work of 11-year-old Alma); ‘La Cabane de Martin’, a panoramic wallcovering depicting two treehouses linked by a rope walkway (by 10-year-old Martin); and ‘La Nuit d’En Yu’, which depicts fluffy, cloud-like sheep bounding through a night sky of stars and planets (by 12-year-old En Yu).
“The response to the competition was incredible. We were literally inundated, from all over the world,” says Pierre Frey’s president, Patrick Frey. For the next five years, a percentage of the profits from the collection will donated to the Fondation de France to support school dropout prevention programmes.