A Brazilliance Of A Different Color

A Brazilliance Of A Different Color

By Carleton Varney Special To The Palm Beach Daily News

Our design firm is known for its bold use of pattern and color — and that’s because our founder and my mentor, the late Dorothy Draper, loved both.

Some of the patterns she designed have found a lasting place in the design world, including her iconic Brazilliance design, which features a bold pattern of banana leaves and sea grape berries.

You’ll see the 1940s design used on wallcovering and fabrics in many homes and resorts in Florida as well as in California and the Bahamas. Mrs. Draper created it originally for the Quitandinha Hotel in Petrópolis, Brazil. It has certainly stood the test of time.

And for good reason: The pattern seems to say, “Welcome to the sunshine-filled tropics.”

But even classics can be updated. The pattern has recently become available by the roll and by the yard in a snappy blue-on-blue combination. But fans of the familiar green version needn’t worry, as it remains available.

In designing a Palm Beach room, I might use the fabric in either the blue or green version, as both would work well with a background wall color of Florida sunshine yellow, cantaloupe melon or aquamarine blue. Such a decorating scheme will always nod at South Florida, I believe.

Then I’d add a carpet of sisal and a black-and-white zebra-style throw. Both would complement an overall furniture scheme featuring rattan furniture with yellow indoor outdoor cushions piped in white to add a bright touch.

And then, for final accent, I’d choose lamps with palm-tree style bases to light the room — even though it already would have plenty of built-in sunshine.


  • Wendy Skruck on

    I can just picture it !! I’ve always loved Dorothy Drapers banana leaf pattern – have several throw pillows in that design now ! Loved your article – so descriptive -your designs are so perfect for tropical and wanna be tropical places!! Thank you !!

  • Catheen Anastazia Hotchkiss on

    I love the new Brazilliance Palm! Where can we get it?

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