At Home in London with Lulu Lytle

At Home in London with Lulu Lytle

While Lulu Lytle originally dreamed of becoming an Egyptologist, her current role as cofounder and creative director of Soane Britain indulges her passions for travel, antiquities, textiles and the exotic, all brought to fruition through the best of handmade British craftsmanship. As a longtime admirer of Lulu’s elegant designs and worldly point of view, it was a thrill to finally see her brilliant aesthetic in both Soane‘s London showroom and Lulu’s Bayswater flat when Susanna Salk and I were there last fall shooting the British sequel to At Home with Dogs and Their Designers. So please tag along for a special behind the scenes visit with Lulu in her colorful, pattern-filled, inspiring home.…

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NYBG 2019 Orchid Dinner

NYBG 2019 Orchid Dinner

It is always a pleasure, in the midst of winter, to visit a room abloom in a profusion of orchids. This week welcomed the annual New York Botanical Garden 2019 Orchid Dinner, transporting us to Singapore, one of the world’s greatest orchid cultures and the inspiration for the upcoming 17th annual Orchid Show. Sponsored by Hearst, Veranda and Louis XIII cognac, the dinner features designers who took their cue from this exotic locale to create dazzling tabletops with creativity and drama.

Inspired by Singapore’s black and white Edwardian houses, Brockschmidt & Coleman set a bamboo fantasy with a tablecloth in a graphic Quadrille pattern accented by an explosion of fuchsia orchids in a stunning centerpiece by Elizabeth Spencer Designs.…

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Rebecca Redux

Rebecca Redux

Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again… Many of you will recognize those evocative words from one of my favorite novels, Rebecca. Daphne du Maurier’s well loved gothic story was also brilliantly adapted to the big screen by Alfred Hitchcock in his first Hollywood venture and what would be his only Best Picture Oscar. And while the movie centers on the suspenseful love story and mystery involving its stars Laurence Olivier and Joan Fontaine, the house, Manderley, looms large in both book and movie.

When in England last fall shooting for Susanna Salk’s At Home with Dogs and Their Designers in the English Countryside (coming spring 2020 from Rizzoli), we photographed at Wardington Manor, the home of Bridget Ellsworthy, one half of The Land Gardeners.…

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Setting the Table with Cathy Graham

Setting the Table with Cathy Graham

Cathy Graham‘s party invites have always been some of the most coveted on the upper east side of New York City. With degrees in painting from RISD and fashion illustration from Parsons and years of working with renowned floral designer and event planner Robert Isabell, Cathy expressed her creativity through the art of entertaining. Tag along as Susanna Salk and I visit Cathy in both her studio and home to learn how she elevates the art of the table with beauty, whimsy and originality.

Starting with handmade and hand delivered embellished invitations, Cathy’s tables were, for decades, known not only for their beauty, with stunning floral arrangements but their creativity and originality.…

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2019 Young Collectors Night

2019 Young Collectors Night

This Thursday evening marked the 2019 Young Collectors Night at The Winter Show. Focusing on a new generation of art and design enthusiasts, the evening was a well attended social affair with music, hors d’oeuvres, festive cocktails and a fashionable crowd.

I had hoped to grab a few design friends who might select some favorites from the show, but I was there on the early side while many hadn’t yet perused all the booths. I did catch architect Peter Pennoyer and wife, designer Katie Ridder, who shared a special find.

Katie actually bought this unusual 19th c. Scottish glazed ceramic potato flask from Cove Landing for Peter’s birthday.…

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The Colorful Pattern Filled World of Henry Wilson

The Colorful Pattern Filled World of Henry Wilson

Yesterday, when single digits here in New England shocked us into acknowledging that winter was just getting started, a post by friend, designer Young Huh, reminded me of warmer destinations. I recognized it immediately as the late, photographer and designer Henry Wilson’s colorful pattern filled home in London.

And while London isn’t much of an improvement weather-wise, Wilson’s amazing flat is an eloquent evocation of someplace that is. I would imagine quite a few of you may be familiar with the talented Wilson, whose love for India was well documented in both magazines and seven books. In one of his later tomes, Floral Patterns of India, he expressed, through his sumptuous photography, how floral motifs are incorporated with both whimsy and extravagance in Indian architecture and design.…

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Nantucket Historical Association at the 2019 Winter Show

Nantucket Historical Association at the 2019 Winter Show

While many visit Nantucket for its beautiful beaches, charming cobblestone streets and rose covered cottages, those of us who annually frequent the Grey Lady’s shores know she also holds a special place of significance in our country’s cultural history. It is therefore fitting, that at the start of its 125th anniversary, the Nantucket Historical Association, is proud to be the loan exhibit at the 2019 Winter Show.

As NHA Board President Kelly Williams writes in the publication for the exhibit, “From entrepreneurs forging the Colonies’ first global industry to abolitionists and civil rights leaders forcing societal change in the 18th and 19th centuries, through to its art colony and popular destination as a resort town in the 20th century, Nantucket’s small landmass belies its strategic, economic, political, artistic and cultural significance.”

Aptly entitled “Collecting Nantucket, Connecting the World,” the exhibit illustrates the many threads of this small island’s history through the fine and decorative arts in the collection.…

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The Winter Show 2019

The Winter Show 2019

Building on the success of last year’s more vibrantly decorated booths, The Winter Show (the new name has lost “Antiques” in the title reflecting the broader collections of the exhibitors) opened this week, celebrating its 65th anniversary in style.

Elle Shushan‘s booth, decorated by Ralph Harvard with an Adelphi wallpaper, was, as usual, a standout. And also front and center this year was perennial favorite Cove Landing.

 

This year’s sophisticated mix of worldly finds centers on a collection of Grand Tour Italian volcano paintings.

And everything from the treen, to small sculptures, such as the petite Rodin below, looked great against the Swedish Lim & Handtryck Stänk wallpaper.…

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Join Us Around the World and At Home

Join Us Around the World and At Home

While Susanna and I have often spoken together at private events and clubs across the country, we have never spoken at a Connecticut venue open to the public. So I am excited to invite all local readers and friends to come hear us at the Darien Library next Wednesday evening. As a Darien resident, I am delighted to support our incredible “new” library, which is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year. It is a fantastic and innovative resource for our vibrant community with the highest per capita circulation in Connecticut (more than 32 items per resident checked out each year).

We will be chatting about our video series with behind the scenes footage, images and stories.…

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Recognizing Women in Art

Recognizing Women in Art

As the new year starts, there are many auctions, exhibits and art and antiques fairs on the horizon. One of the most interesting is the “Female Triumphant Sale” coming to Sotheby’s during Masters Week at the end of the month in New York. While Old Masters has traditionally been a category reserved for male artists, Sotheby’s will be recognizing the legacy of women in art with a curated selection of paintings, drawings and sculpture of 14 leading female artists from the 16th – 19th centuries.

As gender equality continues to be addressed in many other venues, the art world is slowly catching up.…

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