On My Reading List

#34- Interior Design- ‘Every Room Should Sing’ by Beata Heuman, 2021.

“Working out your style is never straightforward. We are bombarded with images of how the ideal home should look. You are given the top ten interior trends to follow, only for them to change a few months later, leaving you sitting in your newly renovated Memphis-style kitchen…feeling not quite right. Interior design has long been an aspirational field, and it is easy to become preoccupied with trying to copy the perfect look. But the truth is that if you try to completely imitate another person’s style, you will always fall slightly short…

…There’s a lot of joy in expressing one’s individuality. It is freeing. It can be exhilarating. It can also be pretty irresistible when you see the unabashed, true character of another individual. It may be very different from yours, but it is all the more alluring for it. Therein lies the secret of any work of art that touches me, books that make me think, rooms that linger in my mind and people whose spirit intrigues me.”

IDEA- Collecting Bits & Bobs

Edward Collier’s letter rack trompe l’oeil painting c. 17th century (top), Ros Byam Shaw instagram of her mother’s three dimensional version of Collier’s rack (middle left), “Tea Set” letterpress tray by Rachel Bradley (middle right) and John Derian’s small box on his table (bottom).

Decorating Our Farmhouse

Before working on our guest bathroom, we had to address some major issues. First the room’s basic layout was suitable enough. It had a vanity, toilet and walk-in shower. But the materials like the huge granite tiles encasing the entire shower and the Asian inspired chest with bowl sink felt completely out of keeping in our 1800s farmhouse. Secondly the lack of natural light was a problem. The bathroom and a closet were housed in a converted porch project done by the previous owner. This meant that the single bathroom exterior window now looked into the closet. To compensate for the loss of light the owner decided to squeeze a floor-to-ceiling sliver of window glass right by the toilet. Yikes! With all of these problems we had to rethink the whole bathroom and the closet in terms of a better floor plan. Plus underdesign both spaces to work with the age and character of the house.

Can you guess which is our finished bathroom- 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, or 6?

Busy Days

Having a painful illness made the winter extraordinarily long this year. But warm weather is just around the corner which always makes me feel good.

(Instagram photos- Martha Browne)

Display- Antique Portraits

A mix of antique portraits framed and unframed casually surround a fireplace mantle.

Design Note– The rule of thumb for displaying is that there be an odd number of items. The four portraits here are joined by the surprise addition of a vase that pulls it all together.

(Photo- Tat-London)

Interiors- Not Level

If you live in an old house like we do chances are your floors aren’t level and neither are your windows or doors. But instead of cursing these imperfections try seeking fun creative solutions instead. Here’s one- a foyer table is propped up with books because of a sloped floor.

Design Note– The books on the floor relate back to those on the tabletop and the shelves.

(Photo- Audra Rhodes for Lived-In Style)