Sometimes the wave of changes brings new possibilities, and it’s a talent to surf it gracefully. Shanan Campanaro, the New-York-based travel and surfer-enthusiast, has graduated from Central Saint Martins, and in 2008 along with her husband, launched the brand Eskayel that specializes in textile design. It all began one day when she decided to try her hand in making a wallpaper print for her living room. In 2009, she debuted with her first two collections at the Brooklyn Designs trade show, giving wings to Eskayel, and gradually, engaging in fabric and rug production.
Her latest Salentu collection takes us to the shores of Spiaggia di Baia Serrone and buildings of Ostuni and, thanks to her father’s roots, reflects her connection to the vibrant region of Italy. It wasn’t until college years when Shanan went to Italy for a one-year course and had her first trip to their family town – Castelluccio Valmaggiore – in Puglia. According to Shanan, the design world was the bridge to Puglia, which stretched across Milan Design fair and brought her to Salento, the undiscovered region.
“The connection I felt with the land and people was very strong, and I had a much different feeling than I felt anywhere else in Italy. And best of all, my Italian started to come back to me!” confessed Shanan.
What kind of atmosphere did you create to reach the abstract forms and color contrasts in the Salentu collection?
I try to create:
the feeling of being there
the heat rising off of the buildings
the color of water
the slower pace of life
the contrast in the seaside towns between the busy summertime
the desolate feeling when they closed for the season
the feeling of lightness and comfort that comes from the food
the friendliness of the people all mixed with the ancient history of the region.
The stillness of the Olive trees and the calm of the azure sea are two constants that inspire me.
How does Puglia influence your work?
As soon as I started spending time in Puglia, I had many Ideas of designs inspired by the region, and I made several paintings abstracting the architecture found in the whitewashed towns like Cisternino, Ostuni, and Monopoli. It was in 2019 when I began designing the Salentu Collection that includes three wallpapers and nine New Rug designs.
What are your favorite places to go while in Puglia? Share your favorite beach spots, cocktail, and an authentic dinner.
My Favorite beach is Baia just south of Lido Silvana.
My favorite restaurant is Il Principe Del Mare, just South of Savelletri for lunch, and I LOVE the food from chef Giorgia at Masseria Moroseta. She is a genius. I also love to stay there. Carlo, the owner, has the most impeccable taste and is the most wonderful host.
We love Coffee and more in Ostuni for Apperitivo, but be careful and don’t order too much because the owners love to feed you!
Think of the sand tracery and movement of water during sunset, and the swaying waves under the sunlight. That’s what I feel while looking through the Salentu collection – tranquility. The Portico pattern with the rug designs is the amalgamation of the simplicity of lines and pinch of playfulness. It reminds me of summertime trips and beckons me to explore more of Ostuni.
But what kind of journey does a single idea undertake to become a wallpaper, fabric, or a rug when we talk about Eskayel? The production process kicks off from uploading the painting to the computer. Shanan prefers editing and refining her photos by hand on her tablet. Then, like a cake, she slices the photo into many pieces to simplify the patterns. “Each part can have different dye specifications, weaving techniques, pile heights, and shapes,” says Shanan. So when the slices are ready, it’s time to assemble the puzzle based on appropriate colors and techniques to recreate the movement of the original painting. After they send the order to the factory, it takes approximately 3 to 6 months to hand-weave the rug.
One of Shannan’s priorities while producing is to make sure that her actions do not negatively affect the environment. While some brands still use Vinyl inks and substrates that are chemical-based, Shanan focuses on producing designs that are harmless both for her clients and nature. Even though it influences the costs of Eskayel products, this move has long-term benefits.
“I have manufacturing partnerships with Abc Carpet and Home for bedding, Clè tile for cement tiles, Elte for Persian rugs, and Starbucks for wallpaper,” says Shanan while listing Eskayel’s clients. The list also includes Fawn Galli, David Howell of DHD Architecture and Interior Design, The Fours Seasons, Ritz Carlton, Workshop APD, Salon Design, Evars + Anderson, and it goes on.
Soon the other part of Salentu collection, the Domenica wallpaper and fabric, will be released in July and the LA Scala with the other eight rugs later in the fall. And we can’t wait to see new designs from Eskayel and explore new destinations along the way.
To view more collections and sources of inspiration visit https://eskayel.com/home/
For special commissions, contact directly Shanan Campanaro at firstname.lastname@example.org