Sunday, March 2, 2014

Lanterns vs Chandeliers

I love a chandelier, sparkling crystals, glittering lights. Beautiful.
Recently I have developed a crush on another style of lighting, the lantern. The lantern is no longer just for Early American designs. It is being used in traditional, transitional and contemporary designs.
This beautiful orange and grey lantern from Urban Electric is perfect in a contemporary setting.
Some of  my new favorites are from Colleen and Company. Their lanterns are bright and colorful with a style that is right on trend.
 The Raj Lantern, love the greens.
 The Audrey Lantern, a picture perfect style.
 The Paloma in a rich blue and a hint of Chinoiserie.
 The Elsie, lattice and leaves for the great Elsie de Wolfe
 The Jasmine, perfect

 The Tole Tent Lantern beautiful scale and detail

 Urban Electric Co has a wonderful group of lanterns. The also give a great selection of finishes The lantern style light is versatile and can work work in eating areas, over kitchen islands and few other surprising places..
 The 1600 lantern is well placed in this setting.
 An orange and grey lantern, a great color combination that looks wonderful over this pair of islands.

 The Lillibette lantern in a beautiful silvertone finish
 A surprising and wonderful place for the Lillibette lantern.

 Currey & Company also has a great selections of lanterns in an array of amazing styles. First is the Carousel lantern in a vibrant red.
 The Ladock lantern would be beautiful over a dining table.
 The Beckmore lantern with a strong graphic pattern brings a garden style wherever it is used.
If you are looking to update the lighting in your home consider a lantern or two. You will be happy with your choice. I am using a few of these lanterns in client projects so I'll have more on lanterns in the near future.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Mod Florals

Floral printed fabrics have come a long way since the '80s when Mario Buatta was crowned the Prince of Chintz. His beautifully designed rooms were filled with glorious traditional florals. A favorite for Mario was Lee Jofa's Althea.
Times have changed, more isn't necessarily more. The designs for floral fabrics are more streamlined. Patterns are layered less, a single floral pattern can be the focal point of a room's design. Osborne & Little's  pattern Japonerie is one of the new florals.  It has cleaner lines, a larger scale and a bolder pattern. A Mod Floral.
 Another of the new, bold, mod florals is Butterfly Garden also from Osborne & Little. A vibrant mix of colorful butterflies and black and white and flowers.

Butterfly Garden
  Designers Guild has created the Kaori Collection. The Japanese aesthetic gives this collection the style of the new mod floral.
Mokuren from the Kaori Collection.
Designer Guild's Sashiko pattern has a fresh modern style.

 Montsuki is a pattern of embroidered tulips. The simplicity and detail of the design creates a modern take on the traditional tulip motif.
 Sashiki also from Designers Guild is a pattern of embroidered chrysanthemums. Beautiful.
 Alexandria in lapis from DesignersGuild is bursting with energy.

  Lee Jofa hasn't stayed with just traditional florals. The Zinnia pattern from the Homes & Gardens Collection by Baker Lifestyle is a bright, exuberant example of the mod floral.
                                                                                      On this side of the pond we have Thibaut, who has designed collections full of the new mod floral. The Monterey is one of those collections.
 Thibaut's  Nassau pattern is a bright, beautiful updated floral.
The Mod Florals add a wonderful design element that can be used in traditional, transitional or modern designs.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Toile: Updated And Modern

Toile is a favorite of mine. If you know me or read this blog you already know that. Toile is a traditional pattern, but when used in a modern design it brings an unexpected, updated element. Using it in bright non traditional colors add to the modern appeal.

 The clean fresh look of this bedroom is enhanced by the blue and white toile wallpaper.
 A bathroom that is designed with white, chrome and an accent of black is given a distinct style from the crisp red and white toile fabric.
 Bright colors, a fabulous gold painted bed and gorgeous toile wallpaper give this bedroom a glamorous look.
 A modern room shows off a wonderful toile fabric.It all works together beautifully.
 Simple clean lines complement the toile wallpaper. I could do without the gathered skirt on the chair.
 Large scale patterns and strong lines give these designs a modern appeal.

 A mix of scale and textures make this room interesting. The toile fabric on the chairs makes it memorable.
Large scale pattern and bright color creates and updated look from traditional elements in this dining room.
 This bathroom is made wonderful and distinct by using toile in strong, bright colors.
 In this bedroom clean, white bedding makes the mix toiles look fresh and appealing.
 The solid fabric on the chair are a perfect background for the mix of toile covered pillows.
 In the past few years I have seen embroidery added to toile patterns. It adds great color and texture. I would like to spend time embroidering on toile patterns.
This is my favorite. The embroidery creates a street wise toile. Love it.

What traditional elements do you like to see in a modern design?

Saturday, January 11, 2014


According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary Chinoiserie (shēn-ˈwäz-rē),  is, " the fanciful interpretation of Chinese style in the designs of interiors, furniture, pottery, textiles and gardens."
Chinoiserie became popular in France and other areas of Europe in the 17th century. It is an Oriental design given a French aesthetic and it is wonderful.
I have a fascination with this style. It is colorful, whimsical, and beautiful. I love the combination of Chinese and French. Louis XIV build the Trianon de Porcelaine at Versailles in a Chinese style that only the king of France can do and the rest is history.

 Fabrics and wallcoverings in the Chinoiserie style
 Chinois Exotique from Scalamandre is happy, colorful and whimsical.
 Chiang Mai Dragon from F Schumacher combines the strong Chinese dragon with an array of flowers,
 Chinois Palais from F Schumacher

China Rose from Scalamandre is a perfect Chinoiserie pattern.
South Seas from Thibaut brings a bright, updated look.
 Palais Chinois from Osborne & Little works wonderfully in a clean, crisp modern setting.
 Scalamandre Chinoiserie toile pattern on dinnerware from Lenox

 Blue and white pottery is a prominent and beautiful element in Chinoiserie.
An ornate mirror on flowing floral wallpaper with a crystal chandelier brings Chinese design and French aesthetic together.
A design by Mary McDonald includes these delicate Chinoiserie figures,

 This beautiful vignette shows off the Chinoiserie style.

My renewed interest in this wonderful Chinese/French style is my inspiration for a design project. This spring I will once again design a tablescape for the Friends of St Louis Children's Hospital annual fund raiser. I am going to use Thibaut's South Seas fabric for the table skirt and  the Let Them Eat Cake vase I found at Anthropologie for a floral arrangement. I can hardly wait to design my table. There will be updates to come.