The best thing about the timing of our move from DC last Fall is that we were able to make an Irish exit from much of the craziness of this campaign cycle. Going out and enjoying dinner without running political commentary from Capitol Hill interns in the background has me truly feeling #blessed.
Regardless of your geographic location, I’d venture to guess at this point in the election cycle you’re also feeling a little bit like this. So let’s talk about something politically inspired, but more enjoyable than talking points: the design of the next administration’s White House.
1st Dibs asked 5 designers to create design concepts for both a Clinton and Trump White House–arguably the most high profile project of any designer’s career–and what a dream to have the best art and antiques at your disposal! The feature is both entertaining and an instructive look at how designers imbue their clients’ personality into a space.
The West Sitting Hall design for a Clinton administration by Betsy Burnham is by far my favorite. Her fresh take on American style is polished but unpretentious, a quality I very much admire.
So here’s the question: who would you hire if you had the opportunity to re-do the White House? I know I’m still fan girling over his new book, but I’m certain Mark D. Sikes would do an impeccable White House. I’d also love to see what Miles Redd would cook up.
Pineapple Welcome Wallpaper
Jungle Vines Wallpaper
Magnolia Blossoms Wallpaper
Have you guys visited Anthro’s home section lately? My mom sent me a hot tip to check it out this weekend, and it’s a veritable treasure trove of design goodness. Their wallpaper collection is especially on point so I thought I’d round up my favorites above.
Just when I thought I was over suzani, Jovana pulled me right back in. There are a ton of coordinating pieces, too. I’m thinking the shower curtain might mitigate the very beige situation in our guest bath until we’re ready to renovate.
Jungle Vines is begging to be used in a powder bath with basketweave tile and Magnolia Blossom is making this Southern transplant’s heart skip a beat. SO pretty.
Allow me to interrupt your mid-week routine so we can collectively play out our British country mouse daydreams (I can’t possibly be alone on that one, right?) I discovered Wardington Manor via House & Garden and am completely enchanted by the Jacobean home and organic flower farm in Oxfordshire.
Owned by Bridget Elworthy, the manor’s 30 acres serves as home base for the cut flower business, The Land Gardeners, which Elsworthy operates with her business partner Henrietta Courtauld. The manor itself is enough to put me over the edge, but add in Victorian walled gardens, and dinner plate sized dahlias and I just can’t even.
Once a week the duo loads a van with freshly cut English flowers and sends them off to London to be delivered to clients like Soane, purveyor of some of the chicest pieces of furniture, fabric, and wallcoverings that I very much aspire to own. Too charming for words.
Sigh, in this case the grass is literally greener.
Perhaps it’s the change of seasons and the “back to business” vibe I always associate with September, but I’m feeling especially inspired this week and eager to get to work.
Part of this surge of inspiration is undoubtedly a result of pouring over the pages of Mark D. Sike’s wonderful book: Beautiful: All-American Decorating and Timeless Style. I was fortunate to receive an advance copy which arrived just as I was leaving for the airport last week. If it gives you any indication of just how excited I was to dig in, I tossed it into my purse and hauled a coffee table book as my reading material to and from Vermont. #noregrets
I’m confident that Mark will go down in the books as one of the greatest designers of our generation. With an unfaltering eye and exceptional taste his rooms are not only stunning, they’re also inviting and comfortable (a quality that extends to his equally chic clothing line).
So, let’s make this week beautiful!
P.S Mark’s book is officially available tomorrow. Grab a copy, you won’t be disappointed!
I’m en route to DC for client visits and some much needed time at the Design Center, but I stopped in Richmond last night to visit my sister and we grabbed dinner and drinks at The Quirk Hotel. The setting, meal, and drinks were completely delightful and deserving of their own post–I’m really hoping to book a weekend stay at some point this fall–but it reminded me I hadn’t shared the owners’ townhouse which was recently featured in House Beautiful.
Designed by Richmond based interior designer, Suellen Gregory, the townhouse is equal parts feminine and modern and the exact opposite of what you might expect for a home built in 1892, but it just works. The high ceilings and stately moldings set off the clean lined mid-century pieces, while antiques upholstered in punchy hues lend a playful gravitas.
If you visit The Quirk Hotel it’s easy to see the owners’ sensibilities similarly reflected. I found myself particularly obsessed with the pleated sconce shades throughout the space and while re-visiting these photos quickly honed in on a similar shade in the master bedroom.
I admire anyone who has the the courage to really go for it with their home and a pink lacquered sitting room certainly falls into that category. Suellen Gregory’s ability to pull it all together in such a refined and seamless way speaks to her immense talent.
Plus, I had our living room painted pale pink a few months ago so this is giving me some ammunition against my family who think I’m a little bit crazy. 😉