Do you like icing on a cake, displays of attitude, style, drama, creative adventures? Possibly then you are a personality which also enjoys the use of passementries in your design projects. Passe….what you ask?

Passementerie (pahs ‘mahn tree) sounds like a scrumptious dessert, right? Actually, it is a delicacy of another kind. A French word meaning “add-on”, this is the term used in the world of design to identify the array of specialty trimmings, often elaborate and utilized to embellish window coverings, bedding ensembles, furniture, accessories and much more. Trimmings are applied to create a mood, denote a style period, or simply to display a creative embellishment. It adds flair and attitude to an otherwise basic design form. They are the applications which change ordinary into extraordinary!

Passementarie constitutes are variety of trims and decorations; buttons, braids, borders, bullions, cords, fringes, gimps, ruches, and more which fall within the classification decorative embellishments. They are available in a multitude of colors, styles, and textures. Feathers, beads, bobbles, wood, and acrylics all can be implemented in the creation of novelty and elegant trimmings. Experimentation with different types of elements and materials, “added to” a decorative design project allows for creative zest and personal expression. For example, draperies serve a functional purpose. However, beyond the pure form and function of a drapery, trimmings applied add an element style, flair, and can assist in setting the ambiance of the design arena. Trim designs can define and change the plain and ordinary and evoke ideals of romance, fantasy, exotic, and more. The creative opportunities are endless.

Trimmings are manufactured in a variety of styles for the purpose of adornment. Just to name a few; cords, ties and tiebacks may be used independently and with versatility dress up napkins, pillows, towels or simply wrap around a lamp. Beads and bead fringes are an attractive addition to hems, runners, and shades allowing a sense of movement and intrigue. They can be used to create many styles from trendy to traditional. Bullions, tassels and fringes designed with silks, rayon, and chenille and further mixed with gold embellishments create a sense of regality and tradition and are used as embellishment on draperies, swags, and canopies. And, let us not forget the exotic with the use unusual yarns, raffia, feathers, leather, wood, seashells, and many other natural elements.

Fringes are edgings available in a variety of styles; brushed, tassels, rushed, looped frizzes, and more. Cords are used to outline hems, border valances, hang free-form, and used to replace welts. Trims are manufactured for a variety of applications. Thus, it is important to select the appropriate trims depending on whether it is applied as an overlay or insertion. Insertion trims are selected when a trim must be inserted between two layers of fabric to create a decorative seam or edge. Top trims, such as braids and borders are usually overlay applications and may be used to conceal seams, joins, or simply add a layer of decoration.

Beyond the pure art of adornment, trims are used as functional closures. Buttons and rosettes are a perfect example. Tassel chair ties may be used decoratively to replace fabric ties or straps on cushions and covers. Companion key tassels can simply adorn furniture knobs, drapery hardware, lamps and the corners of pillows and bedspreads to add a decorative edge. The uses are limitless.

Like a scrumptious desert and tasty icing on a cake, Passementerie, the embellishments used to create shape, form and unique style are the sugar-coating for design projects. Have fun and be creative! For more information about the use of trimmings, come by our studio/workroom at Village Interiors, 1615 Cypress Drive in Jupiter. Ph: 561-746-0686. Website: