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As beautiful weather starts to sweep the northern hemisphere, I am finding myself inspired by shades of pink. This all got kicked off a few weeks ago, while I was in Paris. The cherry blossoms on the trees by Notre Dame were in full bloom, creating a tangible magic; something you could feel in the air. There was a slight breeze and as we walked down the dirt path, we were transported into a fairyland, surrounded by pink petals that were gently blowing all around us. There were children gathering up armfuls in the little park, reminiscent of playing in autumn leaves or snow. It was amazing. 

 

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Pink is a color that works best when used with restraint and a playful spirit. It is a color that makes us feel young at heart and sparks happy emotions. It is the color of hope and youth. There are many ways to use this beautiful and fun color. 

 

As an accent against achromatic colors, such as gray, white and black, brighter pinks look sophisticated. 

 

Paired with navy, the sophistication leans a bit to the preppier side:

 

Used with many colors of various weights, the feeling is more whimsical.

 

Here, with pink as the main event, the result is decidedly feminine. 

 

A pink entry door is sure to make visitors feel welcomed and all the while showing them your playful side.

 

The fuchsia against white in this fresh bedroom is energetic but not overstimulating. 

 

Using pink for cabinetry gives us insight into the personality of this homeowner. I don’t know the owner of this kitchen, but I can bet you he/she is fun at heart, sophisticated but doesn’t take herself/himself too seriously and loves life!

 

Bringing a splash of pink into your home can spark a sense of hope and a feeling of happiness to your day! 

What’s your favorite shade?

-j

Sitting Pretty .. ?

A couple of days ago, One Kings Lane asked me what my favorite chair was. Hmmm… what a great question.  As an Interior Designer, I have to admit that I really can’t say I have “A” favorite of anything. Being exposed to so many beautiful things on such a regular basis, choosing one thing out of everything would be like choosing a favorite meal. Is Lunch your favorite? Or Dinner? How about Dessert? Well, it all depends on what you have an appetite for at the moment the question is asked. What is the chair’s purpose?  Does it exist solely for one to admire? Does it live to wrap you in comfort as you read your favorite novel? Is it’s most important job serving you up for good food and good conversation?  There are favorites everywhere I turn.

I’m in love, at the moment, with the new Thibaut furniture collection. I am anxiously awaiting a couple of pieces for a client. I so enjoyed visiting the showroom up in High Point a couple of weeks ago. There are many beautifully tailored, expertly crafted pieces. Here’s a favorite; I love the lines of the Sutton Chair.

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Such a sweet, feminine chair.

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This is a great dining chair from Caracole Light, the dining wing chair.

1st Dibs never fails to have the best. Here is an awesome find from the LA dealer, Reform. 18th Century Denmark, a pair of Poul Kjaerholm PK 22 Lounge Chairs, E. Kold Christensen. Mid-Century Modern rocks on.

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At the moment, I am in the process of redoing this tired Louis XVI chair that was found at a barn sale by the side of the road. A European antique? Anyone’s guess but it is obviously old. It’s been sitting around here for the past 15 years. Who knows how long it sat at that barn.  I finally got fed up with looking at it every day.

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And the makeover begins, thanks to Ronda Gilliard.

We were shocked that it was stuffed with straw. Hmm, hence the uncomfortable seat. Poor Ronda, she was pulling out nailheads for days. Certainly more work than she had anticipated when she took this beast on. But finally an end was in sight and she arrived at the fun part- painting.

She uses Annie Sloan paints, of which I adore the color palette. We went with the French Linen with a dark wash.

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A little French Linen never hurts anything. I love the detail on this and with the new color, it’s truly showcased.

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Now, it is sitting here waiting to be picked up by the upholsterer who will, no doubt, work absolute magic on this. The big question now is….. What should I cover this chair in so that it can become my new favorite?

More on fabrics on my next post… Welcome any suggestions.

-j

Nicknamed “Chateau de femmes” for the succession of the 6 French noblewomen who lived there, Chenonceau is a beautiful example of collaborated design through the centuries. It has been loving restored several times over the past 500 years, making it a magical place to experience. I love the history of the intelligence, beauty and taste of the 6 women that made Chenonceau what it is today. For me, it is a testament that great design is timeless. Image

I have always been in love with this classic floor design. The walls in here are amazing.

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Monogramming, still popular 5 centuries later… Here is the famous monogram of mistress Diane de Poitiers initials interlaced with King Henry II and later changed to represent Henry II’s wife Queen Catherine de Medici’s initials after Henry’s death and Catherine reclamation of Chenonceau. This is the floor but it is represented in several places.

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I love the use of open shelving in the kitchen.Image

Absolutely gorgeous handpainted floor tiles that have worn off except for around the edges of the room. Image

Timeless. Classic. There are certain design elements that will also be au current..

More Favorite Things

Looking through my photo files from recent projects, I want to share with you some favorite things. There are so many but here’s a glimpse..

 

Currey and Co

Aidan Gray

Cyan Design

Gabby  Home

Century

BBerger Fabrics

Duralee Fabrics

Dash and Albert Rugs

Ralph Lauren Fabrics

Arteriors

Art Classics, Ltd

Caracole 

Best Slipcover Company

E Lawrence Ltd Books

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I love Versailles. Whenever we go to Paris, we always make sure to stay a couple nights in Versailles. I can’t resist the gardens and parks outside of the chateau. We love to stay in The Trianon Palace and always reserve a park view room. It is incredibly pastoral with animals peacefully grazing in the field below. ImagebjbjImage

This past trip, the weather did not quite cooperate. We had many rainy days (and went through 4 umbrellas). Rain could not keep us from doing everything we wanted to do, but walking under an umbrella for hours at a time gives you a different perspective. What stood out to me the most were doors, shutters, walls and of course everything in beautiful full bloom.

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I love this color of blue. It’s a gorgeous muted turquoise, very close to Farrow and Ball’s Blue Ground.

Although yellow is not my favorite color, I love this creamy, buttered shade. Very much like Benjamin Moore’s Soleil.

Many walls are this sort of peach-yellow-cream shade that I would use Farrow and Ball’s Pink Ground, Farrow’s Cream and Dorset Cream  in a layered effect to achieve this. This blue door is a very popular color, so rich. It is close to Farrow and Ball’s Drawing Room Blue.

In love with color, contrast and simple beauty,  as always.

je

2 words- amazing designer. I am inspired continually by Mrs Howard’s work. Her aesthetic is very close to mine and I love to see her work. I recently worked with talented photographer, Stephen Young (another post altogether) who has done work for Phoebe as well.  He took these photos at the 2011 March of Dimes Showhouse in Charlotte. Stephen is an amazing photographer. Check out what he is up to here: http://jstephenyoung.blogspot.com/

More of her work here:

With names like these, how can you not feel the soothing affect of this beautifully serene art collection by Aidan Gray?

As part of their new “America” collection, they are really stunning (and  made in the USA).

 

If you are interested in more info on any of these pieces, let me know.

Check back tomorrow to read the 1st of a series of posts I am going to write on my favorite designers.

je

 

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