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The FrouFrou by

Alexis Mabille

Hotels & restaurants

15 January 2021

From a very young age, Alexis Mabille has been passionate about clothing. He began his career with Christian Dior and Yves Saint Laurent before creating his own house, made famous by his modernization of the bow tie.

Playing with codes, reinventing silhouettes, mixing eras – Mabille’s style is stamped with a very French identity and cultivates a spirit that is as clever as it is frivolous. An identity that is reflected in his first design project: Froufrou. Alongside chef Juan Arbelaez, Alexis reinvents the Café Guitry in the Edouard VII Theatre. The idea: to be inspired by the lightness and carefree atmosphere of Old Paris. Let’s get started.

Alexis Mabille
Adjective(s) describing the atmosphere, the mood of the project :

« Frivolous, Froufroutan, Paris I love you, seen and to be seen.« 

The origin of the project?

« A meeting between Benjamin Patou and myself. Then a desire to collaborate around this obsolete place to be re-magnified and awakened, a design in respect with the history of the theatre and its protagonists, a mix of art and dramaturgy. In order to finally imagine a decoration conceived as a play ».

The Froufrou colour chart ?

« The colour palette is a very subtle work because the place has no windows. There is therefore a range of different blues in the restaurant to play with the lighting. The Ciel de Paris entrance is enhanced with Pompeii red and notes of terracotta in homage to the Commedia dell’arte. These shades are found again around the doors, which are framed with Chinese Blue curtains and woodwork. They enclose the space and create spaces of tranquillity. »

« The staircase is dressed in cloudy Chinese Blue which envelops the gold and bronze decorations. Once you get to the bar, Opera Red blends with Opium Red and the whole thing combines with the shades of waxed wood. »

The personalities and muses of Froufrou?

« Sacha Guitry, Dita von Teese but also La Belle Otero, an essential dancer of the Belle Époque. »

Special materials and techniques?

« Many curtains, mirrors, brass, gold leaf, rechampis and hand-painted bas-reliefs. »

Your project references?

« The work of the decorator Armand Albert Rateau (who furnished the private mansion of the couturier Jeanne Lanvin), as well as Carlo Molino’s house in Turin, without forgetting the Commedia dell’arte and the Parisian theatres ».

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