Friday, 28 November 2008

Today I'm loving...

...this lovely mirror by French designer Hubert Le Gall.

Hope you all have a great weekend, and my American friends are having a great Thanks Giving weekend. Perfect timing really, I think all of us around the world should be giving thanks at the moment!

Tuesday, 25 November 2008

A good cause

It's not often you can buy furniture and help a good cause (although most of us don't need the extra incentive) - but when that golden opportunity comes along, you need to snap it up...and now is your chance!

Modern Love's 5th Annual Charity Auction starts on Friday 28th November and will run until December 8th. This years collection includes works by Charles and Ray Eames, George Nelson, Eero Saarinen, Hans Wegner, Jean Prouve, Charlotte Perriand, and many more. As well, some interesting art pieces by Takashi Murakami, Larry Clark, Mark Gonzales, and Jeff Koons are also in the mix. All you have to do to enter into auction is to register with Ebay.

A portion of every sale will be donated to vital funding for cancer research and emotional support programs for those living with the disease. So go on over and check out this years catalogue....HERE.

Monday, 24 November 2008

Welcoming Modernism

As more and more of the shelter magazines continue to bite the dust, MODERNISM, from the auction house Rago Arts is definitely a welcome addition to the fold. If you haven't already seen it on the stand, or the online version - go and check it out now!

Friday, 21 November 2008

Today I'm loving...

I was not really a fan of the Yves Klein tables, but it looks perfect in the living room of Sourth African designer Haldane Martin. And now I think I want one. Via "This is Glamorous".

Thursday, 20 November 2008

Carrie Chau at Times Square

Carrie Chau - one of my favorite Hong Kong artists - has a temporary exhibition/installation in the public space in front of Causeway Bay's Times Square.

Starting today until the end of December, this will be on display. If you're in Hong Kong, go check it out!

Monday, 17 November 2008

Yan Descamps

I made another great new discovery over the weekend that I just had to share with you all.... Paris based Yan Descamps. Most of his work is quite classical, but I totally fell in love with this Brussels apartment that he did. I love the bold black glossy trims and the extra high doors (are they double height? it's hard to tell). The colours give it a warm cozy feeling even though its quite sparsely furnished. The bedroom is my favorite of them all...oh to wake up to wall to wall silk carpeting every morning!

Friday, 14 November 2008

I'm all set

...for the weekend. I've got a pile of magazines, including the new Elle Decor, and I'm just praying that the mailman brings any of the 3 books I'm waiting to be delivered. There are still a few more hours of postal delivery service....fingers crossed!

Have a great weekend everyone, whatever it is you have planned.

** Guys, take my advice, and go get yourself a copy of the December World of Interiors (the American design special) if you haven't already. There is a spread on a NY home done by Bill Sofield that just made me gasp out loud. Go! What are you waiting for? (and please, Bill, if you are reading this....why don't you have your portfolio online? I want, no NEED, to see more!)

Tuesday, 11 November 2008

Aesthetes at home

I am fascinated with how other designers, artists and other aesthetes live - do they always live amongst their own work, and only their work, or do they mix it up with other pieces?

My fascination was recently sated with a spread on Yves Gastou in the October edition of the French Architectural Digest. For those that are not familiar with the name, Gastou is not only a gallerist of 20th Century design; he’s somewhat of an expert having contributed to several books on designers of that era. The photos of his Paris abode affirm for me the theory that I can tell if I’ll like someone by looking at their home (see my previous post on Architect and Gallery BAC owner, Carlos Aparicio) - although I am yet to actually test this theory!

The apartment has fantastic bones, which you would expect for something of its age and location. Without even adding the glorious pieces of design that he has, this is a wonderful apartment. I simply cannot sing the praises of good bones enough….but I do digress. Back to the furniture. And the art!

The living room could be a gallery unto itself…a dizzying mix of styles that somehow seem to work together. Around the 1950’s rug by Jacques Despierre is a white resin sofa and side chairs from the 1960’s - still upholstered in the original silk velvet, two chairs created by Philippe Hiquily for the decorator Henri Samuel, and a blue resin cube by Marie-Claude de Fouquières. Behind the two 40’s desk chairs by André Arbus are a pair of luminous sculptures by César and Jean-Claude Farhi, and a white marble sculpture by Emile Gilioli.

Over in the dining room we have a resin table by Marie-Claude de Fouquières, paired with Louis XVI armchairs. Hanging above is an amazing Venetian glass chandelier by André Arbus. The doors are flanked by a pair of torchères by Poillerat, and in front of the doorway can be seen a sculpture by Philippe Hiquily.

In the small dining room (which is still bigger than my only dining room) we have a table by Osvaldo Borsani surrounded by aluminium chairs by Marcel Breuer. The sculpture in the left-hand corner is also by Philippe Hiquily.

I’m head over heels for the stunning master bedroom and its original wood paneling. Another André Arbus chandelier hangs above and a carpet by Pierre Cardin lies below the bed. The two tables at the foot of the bed are by Poillerat. I don’t know who painted the masterpiece above the bed so if anyone can shed some light on that I’ll be thrilled…I love it!

And last, but definitely not least, the study. This combination of items in here just should not work, but it does here. The yellow resin desk is by Maurice Calka (from the 60’s, if you couldn’t guess) and the lights are by Gilbert Poillerat.

Gastou’s gallery, located in the heart of Saint-Germain des Prés, was designed by Ettore Sottsass. Galerie Yves Gastou specializes in European decorative arts from the 40’s to the 70’s. I can’t wait for my next trip to the city of lights so I can check it out in person!

Monday, 10 November 2008

Today I'm loving...

this screen by Boca do Lobo...'s très chic!

Friday, 7 November 2008

Tommaso Ziffer

I found some more European talent - in the Italian designer Tommaso Ziffer. I love his confident use of colour, his use of luxurious materials and the wonderful combinations of furniture he uses in his projects, both residential and hospitality. Some of these images have been in my image files for years but I had no idea who the designer behind them was. Now I know. And there are many more images where these came from - his website. So if these tickle your fancy, head on over and check it out.

Hope everyone had a great week, and have an even better weekend!

Tuesday, 4 November 2008

ups and downs...

Remember me talking about the house in Australia that we own? The one we bought, moved into, gutted and renovated and then left – never to return – all in a matter of 6 months? We sold it. Last month. I’m a bit sad to say goodbye. But I’m more sad that we never got to finish the renovations. That little house had a soul of its own, and I felt I owed it the decency of being completely restored. I guess it was just not meant to be. Such is life, hey?

So this post is a tribute to the house that was to be my first real estate purchase, my first home as a married woman, and where I had hoped to raise my children. It may have been the first, but it won’t be the last.

Looking down the hallway into the house from the front door. Lovely paint job, and what we later discovered was 3 layers of linoleum flooring...with newspapers dating back to the 50's underneath.

Looking down the hallway in the opposite direction, facing the front door. A complete transformation, no? We completely gutted the place, so all plasterwork, architectural trimmings were replaced...the leadlight above the front door is however, original.

The front room of the house which, originally as a Victorian would have been a sitting room of some sort, was our master bedroom.

The original skirtings and doors had been taken out, so we replaced them with with more historically correct features, and replaced the ceiling rose. We also replaced the front window - which was rotting - with a historically correct replica, although one that was higher allowing more natural light into the front of the house.

The second front room...which we had planned to use as a nursery eventually....

also had a new window frame and ended up as someone else's sitting room.

The original fireplace had been taken out by the previous owners, as well as all of the original mouldings and architectural features...

so these were also replaced. This room became one of my favorites - during the one and only time I saw it!

These pics were taken by our Real Estate Agent for the sale of the property, so while I can claim credit for the design of the renovations, I cannot however claim any of the decoration inside. All of the furniture belonged to our tennant.

Thanks for letting me give you a tour. I hope it won't be too long until I'll get to give you another...