The Irrepressible Charm and Chic of La DoubleJ

The Irrepressible Charm and Chic of La DoubleJ

For those of you who suffered through my recent technological issues – thank you for your patience! Many subscribers wrote to say they weren’t able to see the last post when it arrived in their mailboxes. It is now securely online so if you missed it, you can revisit now here.

Today we move north in Italy to Milan where fashion and design journalist J.J. Martin lives. Known for her enviably chic vintage wardrobe, Martin knows it’s all about the mix, which can also be seen in her Milan apartment, documented by Elle Decor, above, and The Selby. …

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Looking Back to Move Forward

Looking Back to Move Forward

Having just immersed ourselves in the dazzling world of Duke Fulco di Verdura, it was fortuitous to learn that a new luxury edition of Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa’s 1958 novel, “The Leopard” is being published. Including 32 photographs by Giovan Battista Poletto, below, from the set of Visconti’s 1963 film, looking back at the Sicilian setting for this novel offers insight into the early life of the master jeweler that so informed his work.

Lampedusa was in fact a second cousin and friend of Verdura and the novel chronicles the lifestyle of Sicilian aristocracy that was their legacy. In the book, Villa Falconeri, with its cascading bougainvillea, was clearly based on the floral laden facade of Villa Niscemi, Verdura’s childhood home, below.

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Behind the Scenes at Verdura at 75

Behind the Scenes at Verdura at 75

2014 was a big year for Verdura and the iconic jewelry house celebrated in singular style with an unprecedented exhibit last fall. In a beautiful Daniel Romualdez designed space adjacent to their salon, The Power of Style, Verdura at 75, commemorated their landmark anniversary, noting 75 years since Fulco di Verdura opened the doors to his Fifth Avenue boutique. Including over 200 of Verdura’s original pieces, the story of the legendary master jeweler unfolded, highlighting his revolutionary style, international coterie of clients and wide ranging influences. Susanna and I had the privilege of walking the exhibit with Verdura owner and CEO Ward Landrigan who shared insights of the fascinating man and his work.

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Travel the World with Stefano Scatà

Travel the World with Stefano Scatà

A small wrench in the system unfortunately meant a last-minute cancellation for my trip to Paris. While I regroup, I didn’t want to leave you without inspiration so I am making an exception to the rule and sharing a Pinterest find – the work of Italian photographer Stefano Scatà. From travel and lifestyle to stunning interiors and food, his work takes you around the world in style. Join me for a little tour. Luca and Marta Montagnani’s chic all white home in Cecina, Tuscany is a clean start. The dining room is a serene study in contrasts.

The living room shows how well the unicolor modern furnishings meld with the rustic setting

while Villa Jnane in Marrakech has a colorful exotic vibe.…

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Design Moving Forward

Design Moving Forward

January has been flying by almost as quickly as the holidays came and went. While most vestiges of Christmas in my house are gone, a few stragglers are still hanging on.  These slow opening paperwhites, now possibly winning the award for tallest ever, are reminders of the season.

With the final exodus of children back to school and cross country, I am now in a bit in of a catch up mode. I’m looking forward to sharing my recent visit to the Flatiron Design Collective, a creative collaboration of three exceptional artisanal companies who create custom couture products.

And after the weekend, I’ll be sharing Susanna Salk’s and my latest video, a very special visit with the owner of an iconic firm and their anniversary exhibition – major hint below.…

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Style Knows No Age

Style Knows No Age

I am certainly not alone in my espousal of the belief that style knows no age. And it seems lately that the fashion world agrees. Phoebe Philo’s enlightened choice of Joan Didion as the official muse for her spring campaign set off unprecedented online fervor.

After all, it isn’t often that an intellectual octogenarian has a starring fashion role (her short stint at Vogue notwithstanding). But it was perhaps the spot-on synergy with a label long associated with the understated sartorial cool of the thinking woman that gave rise to such buzz.

And right on the heels of Céline’s news, Hedi Slimane announced that Joni Mitchell is the latest in the Saint Laurent Music Project, a black and white portrait series building on the relationship between music icons and the fashion house.…

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The Power of Wallpaper in House Beautiful

The Power of Wallpaper in House Beautiful

As soon as I got a peek at the project by Philip Gorrivan in the February House Beautiful, I knew I had to share. There is so much to applaud in Philip’s design for this charming Connecticut country house, not the least of which is his masterful harnessing of the power of wallpaper. And while the makeover is replete with artistic flair (the title of the piece) in the designer’s use of pattern and color, the 1920’s colonial still retains a country air.

Bold pattern entreats you from the entrance, above, where David Hicks’ iconic Vase wallpaper sets the tone.…

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Armchair Traveler to France

Armchair Traveler to France

I buy design and lifestyle books for any number of reasons – for reference, for inspiration and certainly for enjoyment. But sometimes it is also so I can be an armchair traveler and take a trip anywhere I desire from the comfort of my home. Two books I purchased this fall fulfilled this category and more. The subtitle of Private Houses of France, Living with History, was an additional enticement.

In Christiane de Nicolay Mazery’s marvelous new tome, she gives us entrée into a dozen magnificent privately owned houses, each with an illustrious past. The Château d’Anet, for example, is a Renaissance masterpiece, built in 1547 to house King Henry II and his famous mistress Diane de Poitiers.…

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Lilly Pulitzer for Target

Lilly Pulitzer for Target

Yesterday evening, in the iconic Pool Room of the Four Seasons Restaurant, Target announced their latest design collaboration with another iconic American brand. Transforming the space into a tropical resort, the room was brimming with the colorful and ebullient prints of the new Lilly Pulitzer for Target products.

With over 250 items, including fashion for women and girls (how adorable is this pint size Lilly bikini)

as well as home and entertaining accessories, the collection will launch on April 19th in all Target stores in the U.S. and Canada as well as their website. Interpreting the vision of one of the earliest lifestyle labels, the products cross a multitude of categories, following the founder’s mission statement, “Style isn’t just about what you wear, it’s about how you live.”

And while Lilly Pulitzer’s original following included Palm Beach’s social elite, Target is now introducing Lilly’s resort chic to both existing fans and an entirely new audience, who can have a piece of the paradise with prices ranging from $2 to $150.…

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A New Year’s Salute to our Four Legged Friends

A New Year’s Salute to our Four Legged Friends

We had a recent scare with our dog Charlie, who I am happy to report is fine. But it was a reminder of his cherished position in our family. I know several of you lost beloved pets this year (my heart goes out to you) and others have joyfully welcomed new four legged friends into your homes. So for dog lovers everywhere, here’s to starting 2015 off right by celebrating our devotion to our furry family members.

In Susanna’s and my video from this time last year, we visited designers at home and in their offices who paid tribute to their personal passions for their pets.…

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