The Flanders Tapestry Collection was founded in 2014 by Johan Verbruggen. Originally from Belgium, Johan is from a family of textile, lace and embroidery manufacturers.
The origin of The Flanders Tapestry Collection can be traced back to 1876 when Johan’s great-great-grandparents founded their lacemaking business in a small city called Lier, near Antwerp, Belgium. Their company ran for three generations, but it was under the management of Johan’s grandparents, Maria Nevelstein and Jozef De Backer that the business flourished and expanded dramatically offering employment to over 250 crafts men. They specialized in a variety of artisanal needlepoint techniques in particular a fine and delicate type of silk tulle hand-embroidered lace and petit-point.
In his youth Johan often spent time at his grandparent’s house. Surrounded by wonderful textiles, beautifully designed beaded items and intricate embroidery, his fascination and love for this craft grew. The company closed down in 1982 after more than 100 years of trading.
Johan moved to London in 1993 and started his career with Liberty of London. As buyer for Haberdashery, Needlecraft and the world famous Dress Fabrics Department, he found himself in very familiar territory and started developing his knowledge and design skills.
In 2003 Johan moved to become a buyer and product developer for The Royal Collection Trust. He created numerous successful product ranges for the gift shops in Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle and the Palace of Holyroodhouse.
Johan now lives in the South of France near the historic city of Uzes where he dedicates his time to creating stylish tapestry projects. He often uses different shades in a single stitch to create the subtle and detailed colour variations seen in flowers. Using surprising and unusual background colours to enhance his designs, The Flanders Tapestry Collection produces pieces to suit every interior.