A fauteuil in the Louis XVI style.           foh-TAY´-yuh (French for ‘armchair’) A fauteuil is a chair with a partially exposed wooden frame, meaning it has open spaces between its arms and its seat. Fauteuils generally have upholstered seats, while their backs may or may … Continue reading

papier peint

pop´-ee-yay PAN´ Papier peint is simply ‘wallpaper’ in French, but when used in English, the term usually refers to wallpaper that’s hand painted, block printed, antique, or otherwise rare and expensive. Papier peint was used extensively in 18th-century dining rooms on both sides of the … Continue reading

verre églomisé

VEHR´ ay´-gloh-mee-ZAY´ Verre églomisé is glass that’s been decorated on the reverse side with paint and gold (or silver) leaf. The verre églomisé process results in a gleaming, luxurious finish that’s often used on screens, dividers, or entire walls. To create verre églomisé, an … Continue reading


pih-LAS´-ter A pilaster is a rectangular column attached to a wall. Pilasters project into a room in a shallow manner, usually by less than one-third of their width. Pilasters may be structural, and actually support a building, or they may be simply decorative. They’re generally topped with … Continue reading


ay-tah-ZHAIR´ An étagère is a piece of furniture consisting of a number of open shelves. Etagères are used to display small precious objects such as ceramics, curios, and other objets d’art. What I really want for my birthday is a Fabergé egg to display on the étagère in the red … Continue reading