Friday, September 28, 2012


Photos courtesy of Simon and Schuster

Photo courtesy of Random House
The Perfectly Imperfect Home

Turnaround queen editor in chief Deborah Needleman has put the rumors to rest, she is leaving after over two years at the WSJ Magazine and the Off Duty section she created to go to T Magazine. New Yorker's love an underdog, from sports teams to newspapapers, so she will be rolling up her sleeves and getting to work as she sets her sights on transforming the lackluster T Magazine into a must-read. Her Midas touch is proven, as she helmed Domino, gave new life to the WSJ Magazine and created the relatable and interesting Off Duty section, filling it with stuff you never knew you wanted to learn more about but ended up craving. She has also written two home books most design watchers can't live without, The Domino Book of Decorating and The Perfectly Imperfect Home.  Hats off to @debbieneedles, the girl loves a challenge!

Thursday, September 27, 2012


You now have a great reason to take a weekend leaf peeping trip. Jewelry designer Cara Hotchkiss recently opened Oliphant, a fresh home store that captures the same fun, colorful spirit as her bright beaded Oliphant necklaces. The name came from her grandmother's maiden name of the Litchfield, Connecticut resident, who felt her love of home goods could be an asset to the town. It was missing a great spot that appealed to interior designers and those looking to do their own homes,  and pick up a hostess gift of two. The shop, situated in the old Talbot's space, is sure to become a destination. The result of her stylish eye is a chic and on-trend mix of great brands you know and love. She has hand - picked pieces from Lee Industries, Roberta Roller Rabbit pillows, over sized art from Natural Curiosities, colorful table lamps and graphic rugs.  This bucolic upstate Connecticut town  is the prefect place to visit come fall.  Fun activities abound, as does delicious food in restaurants from former NYC chefs. Cara shares her roundup of the best things to do in Litchfield this fall, aside from watching the leaves change.
  1. Shop at the amazing home, design and jewelry store- OLIPHANT, on the Green, 29 West Street in Litchfield, CT  
  2. Mountain bike, Kayak, hike or have a picnic in 4,000 acre White Memorial Foundation
  3. Take a horse drawn hayride and pick your own pumpkin at Bunnels Farm…you may even want to think ahead and order a Fresh Thanksgiving Turkey! 
  4. Enjoy a ride in the rolling hills and admire the beautiful foliage 
  5. Wine and cheese tasting at Sunset Meadow Vineyards
  6.  Take a hike up Mohawk Mountain 
  7. Enjoy a delicious lunch at the West Street Grill overlooking the Village Green in Litchfield
  8. Indulge in a luxurious stay at the exclusive Winvian featuring 18 individually architecturally designed cottages, spa and gourmet restaurant 
  9. Go apple picking at March Farms 
  10. Enjoy a fresh and local culinary treat at Community Table Restaurant
Photos courtesy of Oliphant

The shop is arranged in move-in ready vignettes

Lamps add a pop of color to a black and white area near the register

Love the turquoise and fuchsia together

Pretty jewels all in a row

Looking for easy to mix furniture basics? Yup, she's got that covered

Regency details and gourd shaped lamps add a zingy crisp look

Pattern play

A rainbow of color in accessories

A hit of zebra and a zigzag rug balance out neutral upholstery

Earrings arranged

Better off red

Go bold with zebra and red

Wednesday, September 26, 2012


Photo courtesy of Treillage
If you are on the Upper East Side this coming Thursday September 27th, pop into Bunny Williams' Treillage to shop from 2-6pm for shiny baubles by Asha New York. Supremely talented Ashley Dodgen-McCormick's beautiful jewelry incorporates well-cut gemstones as well as mother of pearl with lustrous metals.  Taking her design inspiration from travels to Florence to Paris, architecture, art and historical references, her line is striking and unusual.  Her signature quatrefoil pattern came from a detail in Sainte Chappelle Cathedral. Settings are highly detailed, cuts include cabochon, and 14 karat vermeil finishes mix well with your existing pieces. Lets just say I covet every item, and am itching for a great pair of every-day earrings cause they look like a million dollars.

Photos courtesy of Asha
Bamboo Hoops 

Cage tear earrings in cushion cut turquoise

Quatrefoil Chandelier are a good dangly option

Carlotta earrings look great with everything from tunics to shift dresses

Carlotta pendant and chain

Lily earrings with mother of pearl cut- outs have become a signature

Cage onyx earrings

Cage crystal earrings

Coco C carnelian earrings

Tamsin earrings in emerald cut topaz and rock crystal

I love a puffy gold bracelet with weight.  This Crawford bracelet takes time to make, so give it 6-8 weeks.

Serena moonstone hoops can go dressy and everyday

Katrina ring with tiger's eye set in black enamel

Weighty and substantial, the Mykonos cut-out pendant on slide

Mariska chain necklace has a nice heft and texture, a perfect every day piece

Elizabeth mother of pearl earrings are total stunners. They literally glow.

Need a little party glam? These Elizabeth cz babies debut in time for holiday soirees

Monday, September 24, 2012


If you've had your eyes open lately, you have been seeing touches of brass everywhere. From accent pieces to all-out shiny metal tables, the warm touch and look of brass is a 70's throwback that is seriously back.  Around the globe, designers in the 70's embraced the warm metal--  in America Karl Springer was using it, Italian Gabriella Crespi and France's Maria Pergay designed with it, and England's Willy Rizzo gave it a transformational quality. To learn about these and others, visit Jen Renzi's article on the subject that ran in The WSJ Magazine in August. It provides the back story on the great designers of the past and highlights why their pieces are making a comeback. If you are feeling a bit of brass would give your home some sparkle, there are some terrific pieces both old and new that you will surely take a shine to.

Photo by Simon Upton/Elle Decor
The image that set the blogosphere all atwitter of Aerin Lauder's New York dressing room, with hand painted Gracie wallpaper and  brass covered Gabriella Crespi-designed Z Desk. It was shot by Simon Upton and ran in Elle Decor years ago, but it made such a strong impression for its mix of pretty and strong pieces. The desk, Aerin found at Liz O'Brien, the incredible vintage furniture gallery, run by one of the best eye's the business.
Photo courtesy of The Wall Street Journal Magazine
Clean lines and sharp angles make the smooth brass veneered desk by Crespi an iconic marvel. It seems so ahead of its time, since it looks very now, yet was designed in 1974.

A Karl Springer Ram's head lucite and brass lamp with original shade from Marc Joseph on Etsy is beyond fabulous. Someone needs to start making this lamp pronto!

 Photo courtesy of 1st Dibs
Flair French 1970's lucite etagere with brass corners through 1st Dibs incorporates two materials I adore, lucite and brass.

 Photo courtesy of One Kings Lane
Joannes Lucas Velvet and Brass vintage armchairs in pale pink velvet on One Kings Lane 

Photo courtesy of Vintage Studio Design
A brass and glass Karl Springer Table from Vintage Studio Design is a score and the tubular legs have a strong presence.

Photo courtesy of DwellStudio
Slanted Votive Holders of brass from DwellStudio have a similar look.

 Photo courtesy of V and M
A brass and chrome console with tubular legs and smoky glass top from Trebor Nevits on V and M has brooding appeal.

 Photo courtesy of V and M
Willy Rizzo's Flaminia Side Table of chrome and brass from Quintessentia on V and M mixes metals for a high bling factor.

 Photo courtesy of V and M
A parchment wrapped set of nesting tables with brass corners from the Rizzo-era also from Quintessentia on V and M.

Photo courtesy of V and M
Slim curved chrome linear detailing on orange upholstered Milo Baughman armchairs from V and M.

Photo courtesy of Kelly Wearstler
As one who has long embraced the material and used in almost all of her work to some degree, Kelly Wearstler is indeed an early adapter.  Her Dip Dish with 22 karat gold glaze from Kelly Wearstler's Melrose Avenue flagship boutique looks antique a patina of age makes this new piece mellow.

Photo courtesy of Dwell Studio
Like A Brancusi sculpture or Italian dynamist piece, this brass and marble Tubular Burst sculpture from Dwell Studio captures movement.

Photo courtesy of Dwell Studio
Dwell Studio's Oval brass sculpture on a marble base inspired by iconic mid-century designs is a nice way to incoprorate a sculptural element without breaking the bank.

Photo courtesy of Flair
Octagonal brass and cognac ostrich mirror a Flair Home exclusive, has a hint of brass.

Photo courtesy of Arteriors
The Apollo Wall Hanging from Arteriors, like large wheels, add a textural warm focal point on a wall.