Sharon Muir

Have you ever walked down East Second Street? If the answer is yes, you’ve likely been struck by the series of enchanting, gem-like shops known collectively as the John Derian Company. Carrying textiles, furniture, and many magical baubles, the stores’ most renowned wares are undoubtedly the decoupage pieces—made by Derian himself.

And now, after almost three decades’ worth of production, a book detailing the prints behind these pieces is coming out next week. With vivid reproductions—and a foreword by Vogue Editor in Chief Anna Wintour—it is truly a must-read. But what we really wanted to know after our own perusal was technical nitty-gritty—decoupage 101, from where to shop for images to business words of wisdom. Here, John Derian’s tips of the trade.

 Finding Prints

They’re mostly 18th- and 19th-century prints from dealers and antique bookshops like The Old Print Shop on Lexington Avenue—but 99 percent of the images come from instructive books. The funny, naive, and vintage ephemera are from a couple other more specific dealers and one flea market in New York.

And now, after almost three decades’ worth of production, a book detailing the prints behind these pieces is coming out next week. With vivid reproductions—and a foreword by Vogue Editor in Chief Anna Wintour—it is truly a must-read. But what we really wanted to know after our own perusal was technical nitty-gritty—decoupage 101, from where to shop for images to business words of wisdom. Here, John Derian’s tips of the trade:

The Process Behind

I collect prints throughout the year and then create a biannual collection for the four shows I do—two in New York and two in Paris. I decide what I think will best show the beauty of the images I find: Will they work better larger or smaller? Would just a detail be enough? Then I mock up the pieces in my studio, and the team at my workshop piece it all together and I see what works.

Most of the trays are a single layer of paper, with glue evenly applied on the surface of the image. Clear glass-blown trays from Virginia get placed on top, and the glue is moved around, leaving an even, cloudy film that dries clear. Then they get finished—painted with a gold border along the edges and felted.

All I want for Christmas ceramics by Sharon Muir.

Cozy up for fall

Look no further than the pouch as your evening bag of choice this fall. It’s the “woke up like this” of accessories—superchic but beautiful. Take an Etro silk embroidered pouch or even a rich velvet version by Ralph Lauren on the town. Go a little crazy, even, and treat yourself to The Row’s mink fur medicine cross-body.

“The typical hard-shell miniature doesn’t feel modern right now,” says Vogue.com Market Editor Chelsea Zalopany, adding that she usually veers more toward a “satin pochette or a vintage coin purse,” possibly the key to achieving this Kate Moss–in-the-’90s-meets-2016 look. And never fear, the pouch is more versatile than it may appear—it pairs perfectly with everything from light-wash jeans and a T-shirt and slides, to a slinky little cocktail dress, to something even as dressy as black tie.

Andreea Diaconu photographed by Angelo Pennetta for WSJ Magazine

Penny Lane

Sisters Lily and Hopie Stockman are in the business of teaching others how to work with their hands. Aside from creating their own eye-catching, geometric printed textiles through their label Block Shop, the Stockmans also host a series of printing workshops at an enviable offsite studio and home in Joshua Tree, California. In a serene, well-appointed setting, visitors come to learn about the art of block printing, a craft that these sisters fell in love with back in 2010 after Lily met a master dyer in Jaipur while she was in art school there studying painting.

She worked with the craftsman, Vijendra (Viju) Chhipa, on several pieces she then sent over to her sister who was back home. Hopie was so moved by the paintings that she traveled to meet Viju herself several months later and from there, they formed a textile business that would see all of its materials printed by Viju and his fellow local artisans.

Wreaths are usually associated with Christmas and might make people think of overly craft-y, slightly tacky creations. But the true prime time for front door wreath hanging is arguably the fall. A welcoming garland ushers in the cozy sentiments of the season, and the creative varieties are seemingly endless.At home with photographer Penny Lane in The Design Files