Joy Zandén – amazing treasure of patterns!


Sometimes, good things come out of something gone wrong. When Joy Zandén tried selling her textile patterns in 1950’s New York, no-one showed any interest. As if in an Audrey Hepburn film, she wandered Fifth Avenue, visiting shops with her pattern portfolio, but failed to sell anything.” Very nice, very nice” was all she was told by advertising agencies and boutique staff. What a missed opportunity for the Americans! Joy returned home and the patterns were set aside. It was only 60 years later, when her daughter found the worn tube in her mother’s basement, that the patterns came to light again. Inside the tube, her daughter found an amazing treasure of patterns.


Joy Zandén was born into the European art world in 1922. Her father was a composer, her mother a sculptor, and their friends included the legendary Georges Braque and Ferdinand Léger. Joy grew up in Paris, but spent the summers in Särö outside Gothenburg, where the smooth rocky shores, sea and flora had a strong impact on her. Joy studied art, fashion and advertising, and worked as a decorator at opera houses and theatres. She designed patterns in the spirit of the new age. In the 1960s, after repeated attempts to promote her designs, Joy started working for the Modern Museum in Stockholm. We are actually rather pleased that Joy Zandén did not succeed in selling her patterns in New York at that time. They have now been brought to life again at Sandberg Wallpaper.


HellaThe pattern is named after Helen Lyon, the second wife of Joy Zandén’s father, whose nickname was Hella. Just before the wedding, she found a four-leaf clover on the lawn. And the marriage was a very happy one. Hella makes the wall look like a beautiful, even meadow of surface printed clover leaves.


Säröwas the paradise of Joy Zandén’s childhood during the 1920s and ‘30s. In the old spa town close to the sea outside Gothenburg, she drew inspiration for a lyrical world of flowers from the richness of the local flora. A world of flowers once again brought to life by Sandberg´s surface print machine.


Fredsfåglar – When the Svenska Amerikalinjen [Swedish America Line] was planning the interior of its new ship in the early 1950s, Joy submitted proposals for textile patterns. One of them was Fredsfåglar [Birds of Peace], inspired by oriental design, and this was bought by one of the Directors, Erik Wijk. Now the birds of peace are enjoying a renaissance, this time as a screen printed wallpaper.