MERRY & BRIGHT

The holidays are finally upon us and if you’re traveling this year, I hope you’ve made it safely home to celebrate with your loved ones.

In the spirit of all things merry & bright, I wanted to share this lovely feature on Jane Scott Hodges’ New Orleans home all decked out for the season.

Jane is the founder of Leontine Linens, the New Orleans based linen company responsible for the envy inspiring monogrammed linens you see bedecking the beds and powder baths of many of the homes in our favorite glossies.

I’ve been a longtime fan (posts from the archives here including photos from my trip to their flagship) and while a set of monogrammed bedding has still eluded me, I’m a big advocate of their monogrammed jewelry rounds.

I gifted each of my bridesmaids one for our wedding, and my own has been well loved for 7+ years now.

But back to Jane’s stunning home. You know I have a thing for chartreuse walls–still waiting for the client daring enough to try them–and Jane executed hers masterfully.

I admittedly dropped the ball on holiday decor this year, and am taking notes from her magnolia leaf garland. There’s nothing more classic for a southern Christmas.

Naturally, Jane is the consummate hostess. I’d love to see more of her beautiful dining room. I spy some eggplant grasscloth in the background and that rug is a real stunner.

Her cranberry etched glassware is so perfect for the holiday season.

But of course, the real stars of the show are Jane’s linens. Perfect in every way. For more inspiration, pick up a copy of Jane’s book.

I’m off to find some last minute stocking stuffers for Garrett and treats for Brody, but I hope you have the most wonderful holiday. I’ll be back next week with one of my favorite posts to write all year, my game changers of 2017.

Merry Christmas!

INSPIRED BY: AMANDA MOFFAT POTTERY

Are you familiar with Amanda Moffat Pottery? I recently stumbled upon her work via Sue Fisher King (a gorgeous site to peruse for all things home, by the way) and haven’t been able to stop thinking about her pieces since.

Naturally, after discovering her work, I embarked upon the requisite social media deep dive to discover everything I could about the talented potter.

What I discovered is that in addition to her skill at the potter’s wheel, Amanda also has unfailingly excellent taste in interiors.

Her Brooklyn Heights townhouse, featured in Elle Decor, could easily be confused for an English home with its saturated color palette, collection of textiles, and heirloom pieces.

The same old world elegance is reflected in her pottery which Amanda describes as: “inspired by classic fabric patterns and Piranesi etchings and all things beautifully made, from shoes to bridges.”

I couldn’t love the sentiment or her pieces more. Incidentally, I signed up for a seven week pottery course which begins in the New Year and am so looking forward to a new creative outlet.

I’ll be keeping up with Amanda on Instagram for even more inspiration!

Shop pieces from her indigo collection here or at select retailers in NY and CA.

MONTANA STATE OF MIND

The holidays are always hectic, but on the heels of an especially busy few months of work I’ve been craving a getaway. No cell phone, no email, completely off the grid. Just give me a fireplace, a log cabin, and Cameron Diaz’s wardrobe in The Holiday. It’s really not so much to ask.

I’m still working on the wardrobe (see my picks at the end of the post), but I’ve got the fireplace and log cabin on lock care of a recently booked trip to an adorable lodge in Big Sky, Montana.

Excluding trips to CA, this will be our first trip out West, and as a displaced New Englander living in the South, I couldn’t be more excited for some snow! Raleigh’s warm winters still feel strange to me.

While in my Montana state of mind, I was reminded of a project in Big Sky completed by one of my favorite up and coming designers, Anna Burke Interiors.

It’s everything a modern mountain house should be and more. I imagine the soaring glass windows give you the feeling of being in a snow globe. Can you even with those views?

Plus, the luxe neutrals and layered textures are essentially the interior manifestation of Cameron Diaz’s The Holiday wardrobe which, as we’ve already established, I am very into at the moment.

With its midcentury chairs upholstered in a Zac & Fox print and statement making modern chandelier, the dining area is a particular favorite.

I’m certainly reading too much into this, but I love that diamond pattern on the fabric subtly echos the mountains in the background, and the fixture almost feels like falling snow. Much less obvious than an elk antler chandelier.

The powder bath is another favorite with its Eskayel wallpaper and feather watercolors.

But the real standouts are the bedrooms. If I were a guest, the above is where I’d be angling to rest my head, if only for the long standing love affair I’ve had with Suzanne Rheinstein’s Indian Zag on the upholstered bed.

Really though, who would mind if you ended up in this room with its epic sculptural nightstands.

Or perhaps this room, with another stunner of a bed in Peter Dunham’s Ikat, and some equally gorgeous burlwood nightstands. Not a bad room in the house!

Parka | Sweater | Boots | Socks | Sunglasses

Okay, now on to my packing list. My biggest dilemma has been outerwear, do I invest in the ubiquitous, but undoubtedly January in Montana appropriate, Canada Goose down parka? Or maybe this three-in-one option, or this still chic, but more budget friendly buy? Completely open to recs and reviews so please weigh in!

These boots have served me well for 5+ years and have definitely earned a spot in my suitcase. I’ll also bring this pair as a dressier option for dinners, etc.

This sweater, sized up, feels very alpine chic. I also scored an amazing vintage fair isle and am eagerly awaiting its arrival – so many hidden gems here!

For sleepwear, I couldn’t resist this set. Also, the skiers on these!

I’m still working on accessories, so far I’ve grabbed this hat and will pick up a pair of these gloves I buy each season because I inevitably lose one.

For base layers, it’s time for a new set of Capilene.

If you’ve been to Bozeman (we’ll spend a day there) or Big Sky, I’d love to hear about your favorite spots!

MICHAEL S. SMITH IN GALERIE

Are you familiar with Galerie magazine? I recently picked up a copy, intrigued by the cover story of designer Michael S. Smith’s Madrid home, and quickly subscribed after devouring the issue cover to cover, which admittedly, is a bit unusual for me.

My typical magazine consumption looks a little like this: 1. immediately skim through the entire mag from back to front to see what catches my eye 2. flip through again, this time front to back, reading what interested me on the first go around 3. discard on coffee table/nightstand where I vow I’ll read it in its entirety later while “relaxing” (ha) 4. receive next month’s issue and feign shock that I’ve yet to finish the previous. Rinse and repeat.

All this to say, I’m very impressed with Galerie, and as you may have guessed from my musings in this post, appreciate its focus on art and culture alongside design.

Now, back to Michael S. Smith and his fabulous home in Madrid. If you’re not in the design world, but the name is ringing a bell, it’s likely because of Smith’s work on a particularly high profile project: the Obama’s private residence during their years in the White House.

In fact, Smith and his partner, James Costos, are quite the power couple; Costos served as Ambassador to Spain during the Obama Administration. After exiting the diplomatic arena last January, Smith & Costos relocated from the ambassador’s residence to a comfortable 5,000 square foot apartment in a 19th century former palace.

If you’re familiar with Smith’s work, it will be no surprise that the apartment is chock a block with exquisite antiques. I’m particularly enamored with the red lacquer chinoiserie secretary in the entrance hall and the Coromondel screen in the living room.

Upholstery fabrics and several light fixtures throughout the apartment were sourced from Smith’s own lines. Jasper, in particular, is a personal favorite. I’m still dying to find the perfect project for this fabric.

This will come as no surprise, given my long standing predilection for chinoiserie which has been well documented here over the years, but the dining room took my breath away. The 18th century hand painted Chinese wallpaper panels previously hung in the guest room occupied by the Obamas during their visits to the ambassador’s residence.

It really doesn’t get more beautiful than that, does it? Also, slipcovering the dining chairs in a simple striped cotton was a stroke of genius.

Ochre, turquoise, and light blue, are not colors I would ever immediately consider, but the pairing of the Bryan Organ painting against the traditional climbing vine wallpaper works beautifully. 

In the master bedroom, the walls are upholstered in a Madeleine Castaing fabric with coordinating drapery, and I just can’t get over the juxtaposition with the embroidered banner of a noble family’s crest above the bed.

If I’ve whet your appetite for Michael S. Smith’s work, I’d highly recommend any/all of his books below. I recently finished Building Beauty which tells the renovation story of a Malibu home which Smith and an expert team of craftsmen transformed into a Palladian inspired villa by the sea.

Michael S. Smith Elements of Style

Michael S. Smith Houses

The Curated House

Building Beauty

ART LESSON: MATCHBOOK DIARIES

One of the questions I see being asked most frequently in the world of design is: “Where can I buy affordable art?” Art is one of my biggest passions, whether it be adding to my own collection, or assisting my clients in building their own, and personally, I think it’s one of the most important components in making a house feel like a home.

I’m planning to highlight more sources for original art on the blog, and today I have one I’m super excited about. Back in 2015 I shared my obsession with the Insta account, Matchbook Diaries. It’s continued to be a favorite in my feed and I was thrilled to see its creator, talented photographer Charles Ryan Clarke, is now offering framed prints.

Current offerings include iconic NYC restaurants and hotels, and famed Bermuda and Bahamas outposts. At $150 for a framed, signed, original they make an ideal Christmas gift.  *Hint, hint* the JG Melon would fit in pretty perfectly with my bar set up.

Do you have a favorite? Any spots you’re hoping Charles will add to his collection?

JG Melon

21 Club

Crosby Street Hotel

Lafayette