It is a truth universally acknowledged that wall treatments can make or break any space. White or pastel walls can make a room look too institutional, while walls that are too dark can shrink a room by making it appear smaller than it really is. This is why our creative team enlisted the help of Jason Kaen from Bijou Coverings to help choose and install the ideal wall coverings for Mercer Vine’s new virtual reality room.

How Jason Kaen from Bijou Designs is Redefining Interior Décor

Perhaps the most remarkable aspect of Bijou Coverings is its use of traditional materials with a modern spin. The company’s creative and unusual use of cork, micas, and silks instantly add character to any space while maintaining an air of sophistication. In Mercer Vine’s virtual reality room, Bijou Coverings installed metallic cork for its transitional qualities. “We fell in love with this incredibly cool and sophisticated metallic cork for its ability to create a seamless segue between the physical world and the virtual world,” says Emmy Pickett, Mercer Vine’s Creative Director. “The earthiness of cork and the modernity of the metallic grounded the room while also transporting guests into a whole other dimension. ” she says. To find out more about Bijou Coverings, we recently sat down with the founder of Bijou Coverings, Jason Kaen, for an exclusive interview.

"Cranes in Mint" by MaisonC

Interview with Jason Kaen 

MV: What drew you to wall coverings? 

JK: I’ve always had an interest and passion for design and making things look cool. About four years ago, I was a couple of years out of college and had one foot in my family business and another foot in trying to figure out my passions. I was trying to figure out what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. I’d like to think that it was timing that led me to where I am today. At the time, my brother (David) and I were looking for a change in profession. We were presented with the opportunity to enter into the business of producing and importing wallcoverings. To be honest, we had absolutely no idea what it was we were getting ourselves into, as this was a change from our previous line of work in the telecommunications industry. But with skepticism comes opportunity; we spent a little bit of time performing our own due diligence of the industry.

We learned that the wallcovering industry–that once thrived in prior decades–plateaued for a period of time as trends and demands changed. However, by the time we decided to enter the industry, the wallcovering sector just so happened to be experiencing growth. Fortunately, we happened to be at the right place at right time–hence the formation of Bijou Coverings. It’s been a heck of a journey, and over the past couple of years, we’ve formed some amazing relationships. We’ve also had the opportunity to curate some timeless collections that, in my opinion, appeal to everyone

"Calico" by The Future Perfect

MV: How do wall coverings transform a space? 

JK: Wallcoverings give you the opportunity to transform the appearance of a space in many ways. You can add a pop of color in a setting that’s lacking it, brighten up a dark setting, or throw on some texture to add character to the space. You can even customize your own pattern to truly make a space your own.  Wallcoverings really open the door for personalization in ways where its wall treatment counterparts don’t necessarily fit the bill.

MV:  What are some wall coverings that will always be timeless and classic while appearing modern? 

JK: This is a tough question because I’m certain in about three to five years from now, I’ll most likely have a different answer. I feel that this equates to preference and trends. Based on some of the collections we offer–such as our textured wallcoverings, printed wallcoverings, digitals, contract textures, and handcrafted natural textile wallcoverings–our clientele has been most receptive to our handcrafted natural textile wallcovering collection (my personal favorite). This collection consists of grass cloths, corks, micas, and silks; articles that have been accessible in the industry for decades, but definitely has a modern twist with the variety of colorways we offer.

"Hillcrest Estate Residence"' by Kelly Wearstler

 MV: Can you talk about your creative process for designing Mercer Vine's virtual reality room?

JK: The creative process for any project never ceases to amaze me. We’ve had the privilege of linking up with many talented and renowned design professionals throughout the years, and it’s a constant inspiration to see how well these folks have mastered their craft. For this particular collaboration on the design for Mercer Vine’s Virtual Reality Room, we were called on by the very talented, Ryan Saghian. Ryan, who happens to be a close friend, was one of the first people I had linked up with professionally when Bijou was formed. Since then, it’s been nothing short of a pleasure working with him and he’s helped us a great deal and I’ll always be thankful for that.  Ryan’s a true visionary; he sees opportunity in places where most people don’t and he’s constantly upping the ante in all of his projects and we’re humbled to be a part of that.

MV: Any exciting upcoming projects you can tell us about? 

JK: Although we’ve only been in business for a few years, we’ve carved a niche for ourselves in the luxury residential sector of the design industry. The next stage for Bijou is to increase our presence in the hospitality sector of the industry; we’ve been gradually breaking into that market and fortunately, we’ve been called on by some renowned firms and have been specified in new developments and renovations that are slated to take place in the next year. In addition to these projects, we’ll be deploying some new collections in the coming months, all of which will be available for viewing on our website, www.bijoucoverings.com.

"Leo's Oyster Bar" by Ken Fulk

Looking for More on Interior Décor?

With custom wallpapers, it's important to be able to visualize the finished product before you decide to move forward. One of the best features of the Bijou Coverings website is their innovative visualizer to be able to see how the coverings will look in each room of a house.

For more on the latest news on interior decorating, send us a chat, or take a look at some of our home design blogs.