My love affair with animal prints likely started with this haunting, iconic film, The Graduate. No question, Anne Bancroft is a sexy vixen regardless of what she wore, but seeing all the variations of her wardrobe on the big screen was mesmerizing. Even her ashtrays had style.
This modern-day vignette reminds me of that mood because of the abstract tribal nature of the wallpaper, and the furniture which could be mid-century, but still seems fresh. It’s interesting, simple, but has a lot of personality. I often hear that neutrals are boring, but they don’t have to be. Cheers to timeless, gorgeous rooms of any era…

It’s fascinating to look back over the years at your own style, and see how it evolves (for better or worse). While growing up, I was surrounded by artists, and my mother gravitated towards a number of different looks for our home. From pictures I can see that when I was young her style was sleek, low-slung, white vinyl couches, silk screens, and macrame. But we also had needlepoint pillows and a cast iron Buddha during that phase. It was all about the mix. Later she changed it up with light painted floors, French bergère chairs upholstered with quilted matelasses, washed pine side tables, but at the same time a glass top, travertine square base, very contemporary dining table with polished chrome brackets. Honestly, it was fabulous. We almost always had a skirted table to hide the stereo and TV (they were deep back then), and a beautiful bar cart for when they had friends over for cocktails. There was a short-lived Carolyn Quartermaine phase along the way that I don’t really want to get into.

Now everything is a bit more glam than Swedish in her house, but still light and airy. I learned by paying attention that it doesn’t matter how much money you have to spend on home furnishings; you can always pull things together with flair and a little imagination. She has been a wonderful role model! XO

redandblue

A new year has begun; a fresh start. And the holidays are behind us for another season. I’m reminded, after many conversations around the dinner table with friends and family, that we remain quite a divided country.

I grew up in a red state (or at least a very red county) and now live in a blue state. I have never been a big fan of primary colors – they are harsh to me. Now, purple – a secondary color, and mix of those two primaries – is one I can live with…

Can we all agree to consider the benefits of secondary colors as we listen to our loved ones and their opinions? I, for one, enjoy learning about different sides of controversy in order to form my own thoughts as an individual.

Benjamin Franklin started a club as a young man with colleagues and friends called the Junto, meant to encourage debate without argument, passion without anger. In this era of technology, I think we could all use a little more old-fashioned, face-to-face Junto in our lives.

 

Pablo Picasso 1942 “Bull’s Head” or “Bicycle Seat”

Pablo Picasso 1942 “Bull’s Head” or “Bicycle Seat”

Art critic Eric Gibson had this to say about Picasso’s controversial – at the time –  sculpture: “a moment of wit and whimsy …both childlike and highly sophisticated in its simplicity, it stands as an assertion of the transforming power of the human imagination at a time when human values were under siege.”

When someone has the ability to see beyond the obvious and imagine existing things, or spaces, in an entirely different form, it is creativity at it’s greatest.  When that creativity can be as simple as repurposing a bicycle seat and handlebars, turning them into art, it is genius.

 

Patrick Naggar for Ralph Pucci Chair

Patrick Naggar for Ralph Pucci

Call me crazy, but I don’t believe, as some people do, that every single chair in your house should have to be comfortable enough to sit through all 3 ½ hours of Dr. Zhivago. Some chairs are simply a work of art. Don’t get me wrong – nobody likes relaxing semi-horizontally more than me – but there is a place in our lives for other pieces that cause you to take a deep breath and hold it. Often the personality of a room can be swayed.

I would be willing to expand my master bathroom in order to accommodate this chair from Pucci!