Dear Diva Readers,
top: 5px; float: left; color: white; background: #781300; border: 1px solid darkkhaki; font-size: 100px; line-height: 90px; padding-top: 1px; padding-right: 5px; font-family: times;”>In this Diva Interview, we’re sitting down with Australian-born, England-based Janet Dorey, the founder of Emboxed, a speciality company creating bespoke storage boxes and albums using the French art of cartonnage, a skill Janet developed while living in France.
Many of our readers might not be familiar with the French term cartonnage. Janet, What is cartonnage?
Cartonnage – is the “art of decorative box making”. This isn’t a new fad hitting France, it’s been around for centuries. The history behind it is fascinating, while today we create storage accessories for the home and office, cartonnage was originally used in France in the 19th C. A hairdresser named Ferdinand Revoul came up with the idea of making cardboard boxes to be used in the silk worm industy to store silk worm eggs, but his boxes were such a success that he decided to make boxes for other uses. From then on chemists, confectionists, jewellers, and perfumers became interested in using decorative boxes to present their wares.
It sounds fascinating! How did you as an Aussie develop this French skill?
When my husband and I were transferred to Paris, I took Cartonnage classes to learn the art of decorative box making. From my travels and life abroad, I was inundated with mountains of photographs, documents and personal treasures so I solved my problem by creating boxes to fit specialist spaces.
And how did the hobby develop into a successful international career?
I noticed that there was enormous interest from friends and people I met when they saw the boxes and albums I was producing. Everyone, it seemed needed a box for something that they held as precious, such as lingerie, watches, photographs, important papers, memories, souvenirs etc.
Then I went one step further and offered them something completely personalised. I used the clients own papers or fabrics or they chose colours from my own preferred sources, where I knew that the quality was of very high standard. That gave them the opportunity to be sure that the colours and styles worked well in their own interiors.
Designers, wardrobe organisers, wedding consultants, professional organisers and de-clutterers all have a special interest in my products for their clients. Emboxed gives them another service to offer their clients. Of course, private clients are in awe of what Emboxed can do for them too.
Could you tell me about your product lines?
Of course, I offer Photo Albums and Boxes. The photo albums come in hard-back boxes making them easy to keep on the shelf or coffee table. They are generously sized and there is a choice of modern colours to suit a modern interior. These are fantastically popular wedding and christening gifts.
The boxes come in a few standard styles such as the really large Modern English Bankers Box, Treasure Box, Love Letters Box which holds lots of personal documents.
And you do Made to Order also?
In addition to the standard boxes, we can create anything a client needs, completely to their measurements to fit into exact spaces. This solves problems with sourcing storage to fit difficult spaces and it gives them a choice over the finish such as handles.
I’m swooning over the images on your website! Many of my readers are based in the USA as well as Europe. Do you ship internationally?
Yes, I ship within the UK, the Euro zone and North America.
If someone wants to special order how they go about doing it, can they send you the fabric or do you buy it for them, etc?
To place an order, clients must visit Emboxed.com website. From the Download an Order Form page clients can download a form , complete it and return to us and an Estimate will be sent prior to ordering. In each case the client will be sent a colour card with an actual swatch of the colours available. This is to be sure that they will be happy with their selection before they proceed.
I am sometimes given carte blanche by the clients who provide their own fabrics to make the box and album us as I choose. Clients have confidence in my ability to combine colours to make their customisation really special.
Thanks Janet! I’m certain Diva Readers will be lining up to custom order boxes , albums and more at your store!