Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Le Pouf

Some time ago, when R was doing a clean-up of his home, he decided it was time to let go of some of his old furnishings, including a leather pouf he bought in Morocco ages ago.  I was surprised that he was letting this one go, but he came to this decision all on his own, and was ready to include it in a garage sale.  I have always been fond of the look of this pouf, though I never sat upon it.  I agree, at first glance, it may not look so great. It has some flaws and needs a little reshaping, but there was no way it was going in any garage sale.  It came home with me straightaway~


Look a little closer, because you will see the tooled leather on top and around the circumference, no doubt worked by hand.  It’s nicely worn, and with various intricate and classical patterns overlapping in some places, and finished with a welt.


The vast majority of poufs you see today are not finished this way, they are stitched but not with a welt, like this~


The central motif is one that is unmistakable…a camel in the desert.  Stylized palm trees form an arc over the camel, with birds overhead and a pavillion of some kind or mosque at right~


There is a little wear on one corner, but that doesn’t really bother me, it just says this pouf has been around for a while, and betrays a little of its construction, leather over some kind of woven or reinforced webbing. 


Looks like some deconstructed Napoleon III chairs I know, left “as is” while others were redone over the years.  Sometimes the original state is best, and it’s ok to see a little of the undergarments~

{image from my blogger friend Colette HERE}

The underside of the pouf is a buff colored leather, without the embossing, closed with laces.  I have the original leather laces that closed this bottom; a few of the holes were torn, and it may need to be reinforced in spots~


There is a tear on one side, and this is the part that needs the most attention.  I distinctly remember R sitting on this one day to tie his shoe laces and it giving way.  Old leather, what can you do?  {Laugh!}


Despite it’s little flaws, I love this piece.  It is very charming, especially in a moody interior light.  It’s perfect in a corner or under a night stand when you need to put your feet up to fasten a shoe.  I also know a handful of teenagers who love this lounge-on-the-floor aesthetic, but they are not getting this one.  The leather is very soft and the patina is one that you can not replicate; no, it’s just not possible.  The overlapping bits of tooled leather imprints are irregular in spacing and I’m sure done by hand, and of course, I love that camel in the center motif, the only image that is round, echoing the shape of the overall pouf. 


I am planning to go to Morocco this fall, and I can say it is a country I have almost visited about 50 times (no joke!).  But this pouf for the moment has conjured up ideas of the exotic country I long to visit, a reminder of the wonders of far-away lands.  Just a little taste of this in the house is a good thing.  Don’t these windows echo the pouf designs, especially the modern ones?~

{image via}

I am going to be at a show soon with a load of merchandise and am debating whether to redo and sell the pouf.  My gut tells me to fix it up and put it in my bedroom, for now, which will probably be until R sees it renovated and reclaims it.  It is great next to my vintage Louis Vuitton.  Some things you can never replace, especially anything with the patina of time.  I’ll show you the pouf when it’s redone. 


  1. Re do it and NEVER, EVER let him see it. :)

  2. You were wise not to let that pouf go!

  3. the poof is just now getting broken in well. it's fabulous!

  4. that pouf is to die for. Im sending you an email with my instagram ;)

  5. Oh no this one is for YOU!! It is wonderful and I can only dream of its history!
    We think so much alike, Andrea, I have searched for a poof high and low! (not a new one)
    Not a priority now of course!

    Art by Karena