I was accidentally surfing the Neiman Marcus website last night (my hand must have slipped, I never shop online…) and I spied THIS:
Am I CRAZY or is this a Manuel Canovas Dara printed Caftan and Pajama set. Get your’s before I get mine!
Now that it is getting warm, I am turning my attention to outside spaces. I just planted 2 enormous Boston Ferns in weathered zinc planters on the side porch flanking an old crusty windsor bench. The porch floor is a high gloss Lichen by Farrow and Ball, as are my shutters, (soon-to-be) all exterior trim and all doors.
Now I am gearing up for some yard work and patio re-vamping. I sure wish Mom were here: I could leave her with the car, my credit card and close my eyes and it would be done. Albeit, in a blood curdlingly scary fashion, that I would not care to see while in progress…
In the back patio, right now I have old chartruese, brown and cream striped sunbrella cushions on my old Kingsley Bate Teak Nantucket furniture. I have 2 lounge chairs and 2 chaises that are so old and worn that they are beginning to splinter. I NEED a replacement for 2 lounge chairs and 2 chaise lounges and I am considering these. New cushions, of course will follow.
But all of that will take some deliberation and the mental preparedness to part with some serious cash. A quicker fix would be to address my patio surface now. I have always loved the look of large clipped boxwoods inside slightly-too-small planters. The more the merrier and grouped randomly. The look has become rather ubiquitous of late, with Restiration Hardware all all, but I don’t care because I am still attracted to it and always will be.
The planters must be similar or the same in material, but differing in size. The boxwoods should probably be of the same variety and clipped similarly, i.e. in balls, cones or whatever you like—get crazy with it, people! But, never line them up in a long row like soldiers. A trip to the nursery, Jacobsens (the local flower mart) and I should be all set. Are you tired of this look or are you with me? What are you planting now?
What the hell is a Kantha, you ask? Many of you have seen them around, but perhaps you don’t know what they are, or their significance. A kantha is an embroidered throw or quilt-like blanket that usually has a border on the edges with white running stitches.
Some sources say they originated as Bangladesh-Indian Saris, some say they are blankets and throws, but all agree that the single detail that distinguishes them is the airy quilt-like feel and the white stitching and borders. The colors are usually bright-ish but still earthy and over dyed, and the look is chic Bohemian. They can be layered, used to make pillows, strewn over sofas or beds, used to cover soft goods or even hung as art.
Widely popular in home decor now, they can been seen gracing the pages of high end shelter magazines and also on the floor of West Elm. A great pop of color and pattern for summer; layer one over your all white bed, neutral sofa, or choose one of the more substantial applications available, like fully upholstered pieces, pillows and such. Kantha figure it out? Just pick the one you like best…
My client down South has been so much fun to work with, and has actually taught me a thing or two during our extended project. From Chinoiserie to choosing a deer head for her mantel, playing with palettes in hot pink, magenta and everything in between, it has been a wild but fun ride so far.
When we had settled on a fabric for her ivory tufted living room sofa, it was she that urged me to do the Perennials “wine-dipping test”. Now we are considering doing the sofa in an off white chenille you’d swear was a pricey Schumacher, and it is actually indoor outdoor fabric that her big shedding dog can jump on and upon which she can drink Pinots until the cows come home….
Recently, she asked me for advice on her soon-to-be-constructed terrace– advice on her hardscaping material selection. Both her husband and I agreed that we preferred a natural stone, perhaps Bluestone or even Travertine. Sure it was costly, but the look was timeless, the result would last a lifetime and it would never look dated or out of fashion. It would fit in seamlessly with her neighborhood: a mix of older stately homes in a historic section of a Southern city.
When she mentioned the potential choice of pavers (much to her husband’s chagrin) I almost fainted. Pavers? In that home in that neighborhood? Pavers, in a historic renovation? Pavers?!?
This woman, being the strong willed and educated consumer I know her to be, convinced me to take a look at Peacock Pavers, and I must tell, you, that what I saw online was downright good looking.
Now, I have NOT seen them in person, but from the photos they look like travertine, and they even do my favorite French Laid pattern. Could it be? A paver that is a dead ringer for Travertine? Plus (for those of you who care) they are made of recycled materials therefore making them eco-friendly, and cost FAR less than their Travertine counterparts. This client is one smart cookie, and I am lucky to be learning from her as much as she is from me. Eating my words… not so fast, but let’s just say I will take a taste and see of I like it enough to eat it… What do you think?
I have talked alot about Mom’s affinity for Indian and ethnic textiles, so I thought I’d snap a few shots of her guest bedrooms’ current mix. This is a good way to illustrate how to combine completely unrelated colors and patterns successfully to develop an eclectic look.
I am much less daring in my approach; a bit more methodical and definite, but I so admire how she creates such symphony with un-related and unexpected combinations. It’s an art; being able to do this. What do you think?