History of C.W. Stockwell

Founded in 1910 by C.W. Stockwell, a druggist from Ohio. He moved to Los Angeles and started his wallpaper business by importing hand-printed, hand-blocked wallpapers from France. The business grew to include store fronts across the United States: New York City, San Francisco, Chicago, Los Angeles.

All of C.W. Stockwell’s designs continued to be produced by the silkscreen process, a hand process.

Remy Chatain Sr.
Remy L. Chatain Sr.

C.W. Stockwell’s daughter, Lucile Stockwell, worked in the business as well. She was married to Remy L. Chatain, Sr., a Frenchman, and they had one son, Remy Louis Chatain, Jr., who became the president and owner of C.W. Stockwell in the 1950s.

C.W. Stockwell is most known for its iconic banana leaf design “Martinique”. The company developed the design in 1941 after they directed the designer Albert Stockdale to create a large banana leaf design after being inspired by a trip to the tropical jungles of Central America.

The mural concept for the corridors of the Beverly Hills Hotel was developed from an original design idea created by the Stockwell Company.

Don Loper, a known designer in the 40s, visited the Stockwell offices where the banana leaf design was installed and conceived his idea for the Beverly Hills Hotel installation in that manner

Remy had great reluctance in relinquishing control of “Martinique” to any other entity. For the more than fifty years that this pattern has been in the Stockwell line, there have been many opportunities to license the design, but it has always been the Stockwell position to remain its sole producer.