Sunday, August 24, 2014


THE “NEW LOOK” IN ROOMS

I HAVE BEEN GOING BACK THROUGH MY FAVOURITE BLOG POSTS, AND THE TWO LATEST “PEAK OF CHIC” POSTS HAVE BEEN ABOUT SOMETHING OF WHICH I FEEL STRONGLY.

LAST YEAR, HOUSE BEAUTIFUL ASKED A GROUP OF DECORATORS WHAT THEY THOUGHT WOULD BE THE NEXT TREND IN DESIGN.  I SAID THAT I THOUGHT PEOPLE WOULD START GETTING TIRED OF ALL THE MONOCHROMATIC (ESPECIALLY BEIGE) ROOMS AND GO BACK TO THE LOVELY, LIVABLE ROOMS....ROOMS THAT WE HAVE LOVED SINCE THE BEGINNING OF TIME—WELL, DESIGN TIME, THAT IS.





THIS PICTURE, TAKEN FROM THE PEAK OF CHIC IS OF A BEAUTIFUL ROOM IN A CHATEAU IN FRANCE.  IT’S NOT JUST THAT THE ROOM IS SO PRETTY, BUT IT IS ALSO SO PRACTICAL.  PRINTED FABRICS AND MELANGES OF COLOURS SUCH AS SHOWN HERE, SHOW FINGERPRINTS, SMUDGES, AND JUST THE PUNISHMENT OF TIME MUCH LESS THAN THE PRISTINE LIGHT BEIGE ROOMS.  YOU MIGHT THINK THAT THIS ROOM WOULD NOT BE SUITABLE FOR CHILDREN, AND YET, THE MARKS OF THEIR LITTLE MITTS ARE GOING TO BE PRETTY HARD TO SEE ON ANYTHING IN THAT ROOM.  EVEN THE RUG WOULD HIDE ALMOST ANY SPILL.






AND IT IS NOT JUST THAT THEY ARE PRACTICAL—THEY ARE LOVELY AND WELCOMING.  WHO WOULDN’T WANT TO SIT AROUND THIS FIREPLACE AND HAVE A GOOD CONVERSATION WITH A CUP OF TEA OR A COCKTAIL?  IT’S A ROOM FOR LIVING-IN.

THE PEAK OF CHIC, WHOSE PICTURES I AM USING, GETS THEM FROM BOOKS WHICH ARE OUT AND FROM HER ENORMOUS LIBRARY OF OLD MAGAZINES.  SHE IS VERY, VERY GOOD AT CHOOSING PICTURES (AND SUBJECTS) WHICH APPEAL TO PEOPLE, OF WHOM I AM ONE.  HER PICTURES OF HOWARD SLATKIN’S GUEST BEDROOM ARE JUST LIKE A PRIMER AS TO HOW A BEDROOM OUGHT TO LOOK.






THIS IS JUST A WONDERFUL ROOM—AGAIN THAT “FRENCHIFIED” USE OF A MAIN FABRIC EVERYWHERE AND THEN INTENSIFYING IT BY ADDING EVEN MORE PATTERN—NOTE THE CHECKS IN THE ROOM AND THE PAINTED DESIGN ON THE FLOOR.


















BECOME A FOLLOWER OF THE PEAK OF CHIC, YOURSELF.  IT WILL BE A GREAT LEARNING EXPERIENCE—AND A VERY ENJOYABLE ONE.

XOXOXOX  LETA

Tuesday, August 19, 2014


NASIRI CARPETS

One of the most beautiful parts of a room is something that people notice and care about tremendously, but often forget to mention it in their first design requests for a room—the floor.  ( The ceiling is another of these ! ).

Remember this: a room always has at least six sides, and they are all important.  One of them may be glass (and then what is beyond this glass is as important to the room as what is inside it ) ; it may be of some old building element such as the old brick found in the walls of urban buildings and used today as a highlight in the d├ęcor ;  it may be painted or coffered or paneled, but one of these—the floor—will probably be the largest single plane in the room.  It’s important.

You have already seen my blog post on the imported “wood” ceramic tile from Paris Ceramics.  I love these.  I love regular wooden floors; brick floors, stone floors—anything done well, lying there smooth and inviting.  Form follows function.  But…..you will oftentimes decide to cover some (or all, in the case of wall to wall carpeting) of this floor with a rug of some sort.  And that’s where a company like Nasiri comes in.


Beautiful soft and muted antique rug


                                 
Double-side cotton flat weave



Nasiri is a company which both imports old carpets and makes new ones—and they are beautiful.  Because of their interest in old rugs, their new rugs show the influence of soft colours and sometimes muted designs.



This brilliant blue room and rug are too bold for me !


Muted version of rug


Better for me is this muted version, since I don't like rooms to be fashionable. Rather, I want them to live forever and the softer and more muted they are, the longer I think one loves them.

I think rugs can be used to give an extra element to a room such as these skins and flokatis—of which Nasiri has a very large supply


Flotaki rug









One can have dhurries and flatweaves in bold or muted designs.





Bold blue dhurrie rug




Muted beige flatweave rug




Nasiri has incredibly lovely soft Moroccan carpets.





   






                           Nasiri Carpets New York's photo.

                                         



I am doing a house right now for one of my favourite clients, a lovely man who has bought a house right on the edge of a marsh all planted out with native plants and which will have great desert-y Canary Island date palms in the front.  As in the picture above, we are using Moroccan lighting fixtures and lanterns and a wonderful muted Moroccan rug.  I love this cool look in our hot climate.

XOXOXOXOX LETA



Wednesday, August 6, 2014

NOTEWORTHY

I don't know about you, but my handbag has always been filled with a million (maybe its a billion) of little notes to myself. Remember to do such and such....... Don't forget to pick up tiddlywinks .......the notes are endless. Only problem is, they get lost in the jumble that is my purse. Recently, I got smart and started to use a product that we've sold in the Boutique for a dozen years, namely a jotter. For those of you unfamiliar with the jotter, it is a refillable, flat (usually leather) notepaper holder. They fit perfectly in even the smallest of purses and, when purchased in a nice, bright color can be found in the deepest, darkest chasms.

I chose a cheerful red, but you have a myriad of colors to choose from.





The jotters we sell like hotcakes are made by Graphic Image. They carry a host of other practical products such as journals, albums and frames....all in luxurious leathers. Their jotter comes with a pack of blank cards which we frequently personalize for our clients. We can print a name, monogram, and even contact information on them (and in an ink color to match the leather of the holder) so these jotter cards can be also used as calling cards.





The Boutique also carries "Thinking Cards" printed by New Orleans artistic stationer, Alexa Pulitzer. These cards fit perfectly in our leather jotters and look super spiffy when your friends spy you taking a note. They will be jealous, not only of your organizational skills, but of your tasteful choice in papers. 






These thinking cards can also be personalized....it only takes a day or two....so they make fabulous Birthday or Hostess presents !  The recipient won't know it only took 2 days and they will be pleased that you thought to order them a personalized gift.





We also carry Aspinal of London's slim, leather folding-cover jotters with a removal pad of paper and a slim pen tucked inside. If you are a note taker extraordinaire, this jotter is for you ! 



When you have inscribed all the pages of your pad, you can simple pop another in its place.




I hope you will give a jotter a whirl and see why I'm pleased as punch with mine !
E-mail Betty at the Boutique ( betty@lafinpb.com ) for particulars.

Until next time.......

XOXOXOX
LETA