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Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Devil Wears Prada

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I recently watched 'The Devil Wears Prada', and thought that the design for Miranda's Priestly's office was divine. The console in particular struck me, and I have kept an eye out for something similar ever since. I could only find a tiny picture with the console in it, but you can see on the left - black with a distinctive curve, very art deco.
The Amy Howard Guinot console has a similar look and feel, although it is not the same as the one in the movie:



When looking for images of the console, I found some interesting information on the set design of Miranda Priestly's office.

From Wikipedia:
"After touring some offices of real fashion magazines, Jess Gonchor (production designer) gave the Runway offices a clean, white look meant to suggest a makeup compact ("the chaste beiges and whites of impervious authority", Denby called it). Miranda's office bears some strong similarities to the real office of Anna Wintour, down to an octagonal mirror on the wall, photographs and a floral arrangement on the desk (a similarity so marked Wintour had her office redecorated after the movie). The magazine itself is very similar to Vogue, and one of the covers on the wall of the office, showing three models, is a direct homage to the August 2004 cover of that magazine."

Here is a great image I found, taken by starbuckscameron on flikr - it shows Anna Wintour's office compared with Miranda's office on the set:


Wouldn't it be great to design the set of a movie like this?


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Beautiful framed intaglios, available here:

Unique architectural renderings, available here:

Whimsical original crab and lobster paintings, as seen in House Beautiful, available here:



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Sunday, July 29, 2007

Encaustics - Rana Rochat


Here is one of my all time favorite artists; her images are colorful and masterful. Her name is Rana Rochat, and she is represented by the Fay Gold Gallery in Atlanta. When I first saw her work at a show at Fay Gold, I was mesmerized. I am saving my pennies so I can purchase one of her large pieces!

Rana Rochat

Rana Rochat paints with encaustics, which are experiencing an explosion in popularity (although it is a very difficult medium to master). Encaustic art is created with a mix of oil pigment and hot liquid wax. The wax is applied to a firm surface then reheated by a heat gun or blow torch to fuse the paint and wax together. It is an ancient art technique; 3000 year old examples of encaustic art exist, in original Egyptian wax portraits.

Rana Rochat

The results of painting with wax are beautiful....encaustic pieces attain a layered, transparent look that is like no other art medium. They are quite durable; people often worry that encaustic pieces will melt, but they are stable until a temperature of 140 degrees. If your house is 140 degrees, you have other problems to worry about! It is best not to put an encaustics piece in direct sunlight, but this is true of all paintings.


Rana Rochat

These pictures do not begin to do Rana's work justice, as part of the beauty is in the smooth surface of the wax, the layering of the painting, and the jewel-like tones that are attained from using wax and oil paint together. If you are ever in Atlanta, I highly recommend a visit to Fay Gold Gallery to see Rana's work in person!

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Friday, July 27, 2007

Stars

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Another lovely design motif is the star. The resurgence of interest in starburst mirrors is gratifying, as my most treasured furniture item is an antique French starburst mirror...every time I see it in my living room, it makes me smile.

Here are some particularly appealing examples of the star....

Lyle and Umbach Starburst Table Lamp


Louis XVI Style Giltwood Starburst Mirror, 1st Dibs,
Derapage Design

Bar Cabinet in Palisander with Brass Star Inlays by Paolo Buffa,
1st Dibs

Van Den Akker Antiques


Giltwood Mirror with applied brass stars, from 1st Dibs, Ed Hardy San Francisco



Thomas Pheasant for Baker - Constellation Mirror


17th Century Star Mirror by Hickory Chair

Mariette Himes Gomez Superstar Table (the top has handpainted stars on it)

Moravian Star Pendant - Circa Lighting



Niermann Weeks star sconce


Niermann Weeks Biarritz Ceiling Fixture



Starry Night by Vincent Van Gogh - the ultimate star in art!

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Inspirational Illustration - Dan-ah Kim

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I have recently found Etsy, an artist marketplace that is bursting with wonderful goodies....here is one of my recent discoveries.



Dan-ah Kim, an artist with a wonderful eye and interesting perspective. Her illustrations remind me of the Japanese woodblock prints that have inspired artists like Van Gogh and Mary Cassatt (and countless others)...with a twist of modern day life in New York City. Wouldn't a series of these look beautiful in a crisp black frame with a dramtic wide mat?



Enjoy these wonderful illustrations! They represent just a small selection from the dozens that Dan-ah has for sale. They can be purchased on Dan-ah Kim's store on etsy - http://www.etsy.com/shop.php?user_id=95461


Dan-ah's website is http://www.dkim-art.com.

(All images above are copyright Dan-ah Kim, 2006-2007, and may not be copied or reproduced without permission of the artist)

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Thursday, July 26, 2007

Chatsworth




A little diversion into architecture today....

Some of my favorite trips have been exploring the English countryside, and visiting the many stately homes that are open to the public. One of the most famous of these is Chatsworth, the home of the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire. Chatworth is one of the largest private homes in England, and is located in Derbyshire, one of the most beautiful counties in England.

Chatsworth was largely designed by William Talman, who was student of Sir Christopher Wren. Chatsworth is the crowning example of his work, and is considered to be the first Baroque home in England.

When I saw the film 'Pride and Prejudice', with Kiera Knightley playing the role of Lizzie, I immediately recognized Chatsworth as the home portrayed as Pemberley, Mr. Darcy's family home. It is widely believed that Jane Austen modeled her description of Mr. Darcy's home on Chatsworth, so it is fitting that Chatsworth was used for many of the interior and exterior shots in the movie!

Most memorable in Chatsworth is the sculpture gallery, which is shown in the film. Chatsworth also houses a priceless collection of paintings, furniture, and textiles.

The interior is your typical stately home British style....


....however, there are some exquisite details for those with an eye for design....

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Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Framed Wall Series

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There is something particularly beautiful about a perfectly framed series on a wall. I have seen this in various magazines, but the first time I saw a display of wall series in person was at the Jerry Pair showroom in Atlanta. They featured a series of framed intaglios by Dessin Fournir, and it was breathtaking to behold.

Here are a few examples of well done wall series.

Jan Showers, featured in March 2002 Traditional Home

A wall series done in mirrors, from an old real estate listing. I have seen these at Pottery Barn!



A beautiful living space by EKB Interiors


Harmony in green, from Traditional Home

An effective and chic wall series balances a dining room, from Cote de Texas (http://cotedetexas.blogspot.com/)

From Elle Decor (can you imagine how long it must have taken to hang this?)

A lovely arrangement in a dining room, from a 2006 real estate listing

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Tuesday, July 24, 2007

The Quatrefoil

For more inspiring quatrefoil images, please visit my companion site.

I have always loved the quatrefoil shape, which is composed of four equal lobes. Historically, the quatrefoil pattern is common in Gothic and Moorish architecture.


Quatrefoil window Chiswick, England. Look at the gorgeous colors in the brick...the orange and blue together.


Niermann Weeks Quatrefoil Armoire


Thomas Pheasant for Baker - Gothic Lantern with quatrefoil pattern

Ironies Lattice Table.


Ironies also makes a gorgeous quatrefoil style mirror called the 'Araby' mirror.


Walker Zanger makes a beautiful collection with quite a few quatrefoil shapes called 'Avignon' - it is worth looking at.

Quatrefoil balcony, Venice


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Monday, July 23, 2007

Light filled and lovely


I saw this room in a real estate listing, and thought it was really beautiful...full of light, very neutral, and so serene. I would guess that no children live in this house!

The canvas above the fireplace is interesting. I would love to see it in person, because from the picture it looks like a canvas painted white, and nothing else!

I am not sure what makes this room so striking to me. I love the branches/flowers above the fireplace, and the monochromatic nature of the room, punctuated by colorful pillows, throws, and benches. I like all of the lamps in the room, and the chest on the left, the consoles on the right with the series of framed items above them. I love the contrast of the black chest with the cream room.

The room even has a trendy lucite side table by the sofa!

Edit: I have since learned that Suzanne Kasler did the interior design on this house


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Sunday, July 22, 2007

Beautiful mirrors

I love mirrors - here are some of my favorites

Century Furniture - 779-233 mirror (above)

Dessin Fournir - Otley Mirror (above)

Dessin Fournir - Graham Giltwood Mirror (above)

Bernhardt - Moorish Round Mirror (above)

Niermann Weeks - Beaton Mirror (above)

Hickory Chair - Delphine Mirror with Murano Chest (above)
Hickory Chair - Scallop Mirror from the Mariette Himes Gomez collection (above)

Bungalow 5 Calista Mirror

Ironies also makes some beautiful mirrors, but I do not have images to post.

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