For today’s blog post, my intention was to showcase some of my favorite floral wallpapers in honor of the start of spring but I just can’t get into that mindset as I sit here with yet another Nor’Easter swirling outside my windows. So…I’ll save those for another week. Instead, I’m returning to my trip to Parma but this time, in much more detail.

The doors of Parma captivated me. I didn’t realize it at first but as I started my self tour of the city, I realized I had taken multiple pictures of these ancient architectural forms. Arched doorways, iron strap hinges, rivets (like those in the door pictured above) and more grabbed my eye. Any local probably thought I was a little cuckoo for walking up to almost every door and running my fingers over the aged wood. But when you are surrounded by this kind of beauty everyday, I’m sure it is easy to pass by. For me, that was not the case.

Another amazing door and a close-up of it’s door knocker.

From the ancient doors of the Baptistery surrounded by pink verona marble to burgundy velvet draped doors leading into the Cathedral, each one has so much character and history that they were hard to pass by. I could’ve spent a full day looking at just these monuments of history. Yes…doors are made to serve a very practical purpose but they can also be handcrafted pieces of art made by the hands of skilled artisans.

Since it’s the week of leprechauns and gold coins, I thought I’d share some of my favorite green and gold interior image from Pinterest.

  1. A chinoiserie-inspired kid’s room.
  2. Schumacher’s Nanjing wallpaper in Jade.
  3. A Palmer Weiss designed key lime master bedroom.
  4. Spotted walls in a bath.
  5. Chartreuse chic in a Alessandra Branca designed master bedroom.
  6. Sicis mosaic tile.
  7. A pineapple printed wallpaper in a McBrien Interiors designed powder room. Photo by Scot Zimmerman Photography
  8. Evergreen ceiling fan.
  9. A greek key and geometric wallpaper.
  10. Tory Burch’s office in Manhattan.
  11. The most amazing terrace.

All images courtesy of Pinterest unless otherwise stated.

I am very fortunate that I have been able to spend a few days over the last couple of weeks visiting various industry shows that capture what’s new and happening in the world of interiors. I started with KBIS in Orlando a few weeks ago, followed by the Winter Antiques show in NYC. And just yesterday, I spent several hours perusing the booths at the NY Now show, also in NYC. While the wares shown at each of these are from opposite ends of multiple spectrums, I noticed several commonalities throughout. One of the most prominent to me was the use of BLACK everywhere. Some vendors used it as the wall color to allow their art to be the focal point, others used little splashes in decorative accessories. Either way, black is sophisticated, beautiful, chic and definitely back.

Left to Right: Clarke Tub, Rohl Sink, Kohler Shower Display

KBIS 2018

Surface Materials

Left: Artistic Tile’s Tuxedo Park Mosaic      Right: Florim’s Le Veneziane Floor Tiles

Fabrics ranging from classic to geometric make it easy to add a splash of sophistication.

From Left to Right: Schumacher’s Queen of Spain, Osborne & Little’s Versilia, & Osborne & Little’s Paseo Canetille

Quadrille’s Macoco Reverse wallpaper and fabric used together in the same color way make a stunning statement and add graphic visual interest. Neutral fabrics and accessories allow the pattern to tell the story.

And if choosing black fixtures, wallcoverings or fabrics seems too daunting or permanent, there are numerous ways to incorporate this trendy color. Feast your eyes on the inspiration below…

From Left to Right:

Row 1: Black Calla Lilies, Black Marble Lamp from Get Lit, Antique Desk from Blackman Cruz

Row 2: Art from Vintage Print Gallery, Decorative Jars from Tozai Home, Black and White Print “Sidekick” from Peter Fetterman Gallery,

Row 3: Mirror from R & Y Augousti, Black Lamp from Ro Sham Beaux, Black Lacquered Wreath from The Magnolia Company

Row 4: Side Table from Hickory Chair, Black and White Print “Gallery Ford Model V” from Peter Fetterman Gallery, Pillow from Ryan Studio

Last week I had the great pleasure of visiting the Downton Abbey exhibition in New York. I have been a fan of the show since first hearing the opening theme song and the beautiful Jacobean home we now know to be Highclere Castle filled the screen. And while the show is no longer in production, getting to  witness the craftsmanship of the costume and set designers made me “feel the feels” all over again. Below are just a few of my images of the interior sets and a few antique pieces I’ve curated from 1stDibs that emulate the spirit of Downton Abbey.

 

Downstairs Kitchen

The stove and ovens….complete with real steam!

A close up of the copper bakeware. What a functional yet attractive way to display your favorite bundt pans!

Distressed cabinetry laid with the practical yet beautiful crockery on display.

Antique Farmhouse Table – Perfect for prep work or gathering a family for Sunday breakfast.

Farmhouse Dresser – A handsome piece to display your creamware or blue and white serving pieces.

 

 

Carson’s Office

The exquisitely crafted costumes of Mr. Carson and Mrs. Hughes on display in Mr. Carson’s office. An amazing partner’s desk was used on set for many of the scenes depicting life below stairs.

Edwardian Mahogany Partners Desk – Beautiful in a man’s library.

 

Upstairs Dining Room

If only I had a room large enough to seat this many people, I’d pull out all my silver and china and host a dinner party every night with a table set like this.

Set of Hepplewhite Style Dining Chairs – The shield back is classic and would never go out of style.

 

Lady Mary’s Bedroom

A bedroom fit for a lady…A luxurious bed, the warmth of a fireplace and an exquisite antique vanity.

Parquetry Empire Style Bed

 

Louis XVI Style Vanity

 

There are so many rooms we didn’t get to see at this exhibition and even a larger number of iconic pieces from the show that weren’t displayed. While I wasn’t disappointed by what I was able to see here, it left me yearning for more. I guess I’ll just have to plan a trip to Highclere in the future!

 

 

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It’s January and everyone waits excitedly for the fashion and home trend forecasts for 2018. But nothing tops the unveiling of Pantone’s Color of the Year. It influences everything from the runways to home decor and becomes the cornerstone of design trends for the next twelve months. This year, Pantone has chosen ULTRAVIOLET as its “2018 Color of the Year”.

“A dramatically provocative and thoughtful purple shade, PANTONE 18-3838 Ultra Violet communicates originality, ingenuity, and visionary thinking that points us toward the future.” (image and excerpt from www.pantone.com)

Purple has long been associated with royalty, luxury, spirituality and creativity making it a stylish choice for designing interiors. Going forward, we’ll see even more shades of purple from lavender to amethyst become prominent in the interior design world. Below are a few ways to incorporate everyone’s new favorite color into the home.

PAINT

One of the easier and less expensive ways to add the COTY to your home is by using a great paint color to spruce up an old piece of furniture, an accent wall or even a whole room.

A striking front door. Photo: Pinterest.

A feminine library designed by Nathan Turner. Photo: Elle Decor.

 

WALLPAPER

If you are feeling bold, wallpaper is a fantastic way to express your personality. To start small, use a graphic wallpaper in a small powder room.

 Photo: This Old House.

Photo: Luxe Magazine

Using a hand painted lavender chinoiserie paper like the one shown in the dining room designed by Mary McGee (shown below) makes a sophisticated statement.

Photo: House Beautiful

 

ART

Sourcing the right piece of art is vital to the design of a space. The piece should resonate with you on an emotional level as well as compliment the decor of the space in which it is going to live. Below are a couple of pieces that incorporate the COTY and I’d love to display on my walls at home.

“Escaping Light” by Julia Contacessi

“Islands Off The Main Land” by Jane Schmidt at Sorelle Gallery, New Canaan, CT

 

FURNITURE

There is nothing more luxurious than a velvet upholstered chair or sofa in a deep purple shade. It’s daring and so opulent….

A beautiful mix of a 16th Century home that has had all of the original details restored combined with modern furnishings in rich textures and deep shades. Photo from elledecor.it.

A modern interior with a clean-lined aubergine sofa. Photo from Dobkenize.com

New French style living room with sumptuous velvet upholstered daybed. Photo from Architectural Digest.

 

ACCESSORIES

If the above inspiration seems too daunting to incorporate into your own home, adding a few simple accessories to your decor will freshen up your space and allow you to enjoy this amazingly versatile color.

“Joy” Purple Neon Sign by Mary Jo McGonale at Sorelle Gallery, New Canaan, CT

Amethyst Tealight from ZGallerie

Christopher Spitzmiller Aurora Table Lamps in Wisteria

 

And lastly, you can never go wrong with fresh hydrangeas. Photo from Pinterest.

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