The Etsy Blog

Puppy Love From France handmade and vintage goods

Hello there! I’m Laetitia, and I work as a community manager for Etsy’s global efforts in France. I’m pleased to announce that the Twitter Artist Series has just become more global. This month, all of Etsy’s Twitter profiles (@Etsy, @EtsyFR, @EtsyUK, @EtsyDE, @EtsyNL and @EtsyJP) feature a bubblegum-chewing bulldog, designed by French designer Erwin van Den Arend, also known as Coco de Paris. Using antique French magazines produced almost 200 years ago, Erwin’s work allows you to purchase a piece of France’s history that’s still in “l’air du temps” (the times).

As usual, you’ll find the design as a free download below. I asked Erwin about his inspiration, his design, and his favorites places in France.

You use antique French papers in your artwork. How do you find them and where did you get the idea to paint on vintage paper?
My wife and I like to visit flea markets in France. It was there that I discovered the charm of taking old decorations from my home and combining them with antique French magazines. I had this idea that I could bring life to old, abandoned souls, as well the idea of joining old and new. By painting in acrylic, the vintage paper brings out the vibracy of the image I created, much more than on a painting on simple white paper.

Tell us a bit about your design.
I am a positive person who enjoys the humor in life. My creations reflect my spirit. A smile is the greatest reward I could ever receive from my customers.

For Etsy’s Twitter Artist series, I decided to use French bulldogs to represent France. I’ve never see a bulldog chewing gum, so I decided to create one, just for fun. Twitter is like a big family — that’s why I created a whole family of bulldogs, each chewing bubblegum.

As a Frenchman, what should Etsians visiting your hometown (or country) check out?
Collioure and Saint-Paul de Vence, two charming villages in the south of France, are filled with art galleries, boutiques and sidewalk cafes that have inspired Picasso, Matisse, and many others. And of course, you have to visit Paris! Check out Chartier, one of the most celebrated  restaurants in Paris since 1887 — it makes you feel like Coco Chanel could pass by at any moment. It’s very vintage, very Belle Époque and not very expensive. And don’t forget breakfast at Coquelicot, a Parisian pastry and bakery shop in Montmartre. The first time we went there we discovered so many tempting choices and adorable decorations. In fact, we immediately exclaimed, “This is so Etsy!”

What’s next for you ?
Since I sell on Etsy, different editors in U.S. and in U.K. are interested in my work for publishing posters, greeting cards, etc. There is also a writer from the U.S. that contacted me about creating illustrations for her latest book about the wisdom of animals. I’m also working on a lot of new artwork for my Etsy shop that should be coming soon.

Pick up your free mobile or desktop download of Erwin’s exclusive design below and be sure to check out his Etsy profile and  shop.

Download for iPhone / iPod Touch
Download for iPhone 4
Download for iPad
Download for 1280×800 Desktop
Download for 1440×900 Desktop
Download for 1920×1200 Desktop

1.  Pick your device above and save the image to your computer.
2.  Sync your device and click the photo tab to include your pretty new wallpaper.
3.  After syncing, view the photo and click the lower left button to use as wallpaper.
4.  That’s it! Now show off and tell all your tweeps to follow @Etsy@EtsyFR@EtsyUK@EtsyDE@EtsyNL and @EtsyJP.

Get Caught Up With Etsy’s Twitter Artist Series