A good toile, gone bad

Move over* recycled Thrift Store paintings, there is a new game in town. I’ve always been a sucker for turning traditional patterns or objects on their heads and artist Richard Saja has been doing that to one of the most traditional textiles in history, toile.

Toile de Jouy (normally referred to simply as “toile”) is traditionally a linen or canvas cloth printed with pastoral or boating scenes and regularly evokes the feeling of a French or British country-side home. Applying graffiti-like ideas to the fabric using embroidery floss, Richard Saja, alters the landscapes presented by the fabric is humorous and entertaining ways.

Below are some samples of Richards work. Get inspired, learn to embroider, and make your own; I might. Imagine stretching some fabric like this onto a frame to use as a painting; sewing into a throw pillow; or, as Richard has done, use on a pair of shoes.


*For the record: I don’t really want artists to quit making these paintings, I find them endlessly entertaining.


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