Specialty Fabrics Review July 2020 - 42

FOCUS

MARKETS

In 2018, the Woven Inspiration
team used 50 yards of silk
damask from France to
reupholster the walls of the
music room inside the 1892
Bishop's Palace, a threestory, 19,000-square-foot
National Historic Landmark
in Galveston, Texas.
Photo: Woven Inspiration.

Recovering the gilded age
Woven Inspiration owner Christine Becker welcomes the challenge
of preservation-of history and her craft.
BY HOLLY EAMON

Preserving with purpose
Christine Becker's interior design
studio, Woven Inspiration, specializes
in upholstery, fabric and window
treatment services-enhanced by
the team's unique expertise in historic
restoration. Even when they're not
completing historical projects, Becker
and her team find ways to bring the
past back to life thanks to their shop
location, which is merely steps from a
salvage yard. "I'll often get repurposed
wood from the yard for furniture
frames; it makes a piece much more
enchanting," Becker says, noting a sofa
frame she recently built for a client
using pieces of a 1908 piano that was
chopped up and dropped in the yard.
"Clients love it, and that's what we're
all about: the art of preservation."

C

hristine Becker was destined for a life immersed in design. Born in Verona, Italy, she
spent her childhood captivated by the city's medieval architecture before moving as
a teen to the artist-inhabited neighborhood of Greenwich Village, N.Y.
Influence came from within her home as well. "My grandmother and mother sewed,
and we made everything by hand-including the upholstery and furniture. That's how you
maintained your property," she says. "The hands-on experience was far more valuable than
going to college and getting the education."
PASSION MEETS BUSINESS
Becker took trade courses such as upholstering and refinishing at New York University
and completed her degree in Houston, Texas, where she opened her first shop, Upholstery
Plus Fabrics, in the downtown Museum District in 1988. The location afforded her several
opportunities to master her historic upholstery expertise.
As the shop grew over the next 18 years, so did Becker's interest in gilded mansion projects.
This interest eventually led her to move to Galveston, Texas, the current location of her
interior design studio, Woven Inspiration.
Built during the Gilded Age, which spanned the late 1800s and early 1900s, gilded mansions
are known for their extravagance, meticulous detail and intriguing family histories. In 2018,
Becker and her team completed one of their most intricate and high-profile mansion projects:
reupholstering the walls and furniture within the music room and the gold room of the 1892
Bishop's Palace, a three-story, 19,000-square-foot National Historic Landmark in Galveston's
East End Historic District.
A PERFECT MATCH
"Wall upholstery renders the wall visually soft and slightly curved with the help of a beautiful
pattern and rich texture. This can help transform a room and transport you into a different
era," Becker says. The walls of the music room of the Bishop's Palace are lined with silk

42 REVIEW JULY 2020

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Specialty Fabrics Review July 2020

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Specialty Fabrics Review July 2020 - 1
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Specialty Fabrics Review July 2020 - Cover3
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