While Ruhlmann is better known for his beautifully designed and executed furniture and interior decoration, he also designed a number of wallpapers. This is an early design produced before he got into his brightly colored Art Deco phase. While still drawing upon an Art Nouveau aesthetic with its meandering vines and organic nature, the restrained color palette and reduction of the natural forms into their most basic silhouette also shows some of characteristics of the coming Art Deco style. The original drawing for this design is in the collection of the Musée des Arts Decoratifs in Paris. While this is an early Ruhlmann wallpaper design, his later designs contained more dense patterns of stylized roses in brighter colors which are more in keeping with his Art Deco style.
Most of Ruhlmann’s designs for interiors contain pattern on the walls, which complemented the materials and patterns used on his furniture. His interiors frequently contained a mix of patterns and textures, blending strong and subtle, to create a harmonious room. This mix was also found on his furniture, where his pieces may contain patterns created by a mix of rich woods and other materials such as ivory and shagreen, while others contain decorative panels of dense flowers and bouquets.
Ruhlmann was born into a family of designers and in 1907 upon his father’s death took over the family business. In 1919 he founded Établissement Ruhlmann et Laurent with his friend Pierre Laurent, for which they designed luxury home goods including furniture, wallpaper, textiles, and lighting. While Ruhlmann designed for an elite clientele, the beauty and elegance of his designs opened the eyes of the world to what is known as Art Deco.