Friday, January 31, 2014


Photo courtesy of Vaunte
Viyet's co-founders the stylish gals Rachel Rodin and Louise Youngson-Klasfeld

There are two things most New Yorkers lack: space and time. Make the most of both and peruse Viyet, the new high-end resale site for "Pre-loved luxury pieces from New York City."  The selection, culled from Metropolitan area interior designers, those that have outgrown their space, or are looking to embrace a new design sensibility, is a varied mix of pre-approved pieces looking for a new home. Viyet, a play on the word vignette, has pieces, many of them by iconic, known brands,  from the likes of Celerie Kemble to Foley and Cox, offering a wide range of styles, from a one-of-a-kind zippy red 1970's vintage Willy Rizzo cocktail table to current Donghia lamps.
Taking the consignment model online, the company, founded by two fashion-forward savvy friends, co-founders Rachel Rodin and Louise Youngson-Klasfeld, has seen success in their full-service, curated experience,  selling to  areas like California.  New Yorkers (mostly) live in spaces that require a constant edit, to maximize the square feet at hand. Think of how many high rises exist, and how many places could use a "freshening."
Interested in working with Viyet to place your furnishings in a good home? As an interior designer, lets say you walk into a clients house and want to get rid of it all.  What to do with the pieces that might not work in your design vision? Start with a clean slate, and consign them. The group at Viyet makes it really easy way to do that. Here is how it works. Send their vetting team photos with your estimated value and name and style of the pieces. Viyet's team will then vet them for salability, and the site details the minimums. The second part of the process, if the pieces are approved,  involves sending a curator to your home to shoot and measure the assorted items. Then the images go up on the website, and they are shoppable. Viyet handles arranging the white glove pick up and delivery, taking that logistical stuff off of your hands.  Hopefully you will love what you uncover virtually, but your being happy is part of the deal, so they accept returns within 48 hours of delivery.

Look at these fabulous pieces I found yesterday while window shopping on the site:

Photos courtesy of Viyet
Inspired by the work of 20th century masters, this Alberto and Diego Giacometti style table lamp in a matte ceramic finish has such a distinctive look.

Another great lamp, a faux-shagreen obelisk,  comes from HB Home. In its former home it made the perfect desk lamp.

To add symmetry to a console a pair of substantial lamps create a nice consistency. Try these Venetian glass beauties with tailored shades from Donghia.

A 3-tiered candy apple red lacquer cocktail table from the 1970's by Willy Rizzo. I have always loved his pieces so Disco era chic.

A classic coffee table inspired by the clean lines of a Jean-Michel Frank piece in an antique white finish.

Placed beside comfortable chairs, end tables are a must, as they provide a spot for a drink or a book.   Seen above available as a pair, the bi-level antique gold Neoclassical tables with dark marble tops add  a patina to a room. They come with a mirror top, in case you want to get glam and switch out the marble.

I am always one for color, so these tuxedo arm lounge chairs from A. Rudin upholstered in a yellow fabric immediately captured my attention. The plus? They SWIVEL, better to see the TV with.

If it is designed by Bunny Williams and covered in velvet, I'm into it. Part of a limited-edition collection, upholstered in a chic olive cotton velvet with nailhead trim, this tailored 3 seater sofa is a great deal.

How gorgeous are these? Dainty in appearance but hearty in design, this set of 8 custom made dining chairs from Celerie Kemble by Celestina are wrapped in Shagreen and covered in dark grey hair on hide.  A bit Deco a bit Regency, the result is chic.

Need chairs for the dining room asap? I found these white Redford House Swedish Chairs with cane seats that can work in a city or country setting.

The Shelton Footstool with nailhead trim and x-base covered in a neutral cream leather.  An added bonus? Viyet jazzes up the product information with fun, tongue in cheek descriptions that are sure to make you chuckle.

More great yellow, this time in a traditional pair of dark wood frames in this footstool duo made by Holly Hunt. Covered in yellow silk they take on a Regency flair.

Thursday, January 30, 2014


I love a good pop of bright color, pretty much anywhere.  A shot of color adds a bright ray of sunshine to a room needing a lift. All of January has been a deep freeze, so it makes me like it even more. Decorative accessories like bowls and trays are an easy way to inject a room with a shot of uplifting color.  Woven by skilled women in Rwanda, Africa, Indego artisan baskets have a wonderful graphic geometric pattern, painstakingly woven out of fine threads of dyed plant material. The effect is smile-inducing, making an age-old traditional craft modern and fair trade in today's color palette.

Photos courtesy of Indego 
Burst Plateau Basket in red white and blue.

Color The World Platter with handles makes it great for cocktail hour hors d'oeuvres.

Orange Burst Plateau Basket paired with a zesty teal 

Olive Burst, in a chic olive drab and cream combo

Tuesday, January 28, 2014


Plaster, and a supporting cast of look-alike materials are everywhere these days. The crisp look of a matte white finish is appealing, for it puts the spotlight on the clean silhouette of the object, be it cast or carved, resin, alabaster or plaster. Bringing a classic art form from the past into the present, the results are stunning. 
A diverse array of pieces exist out there,  here are several standouts.

Photo courtesy of Oly
With whimsical hoof feet, the dramatic Faline four poster bed from Oly can enhance a winter woodlands or lodge locale interior.

Photo courtesy of Cuff Home
The Stacked Entry Table from Cuff Home is giant slabs stacked at angles for dramatic effect. Very raw, very pre-masterpiece-Michelangelo-goes-to-the-quarry.

Photo courtesy of Porta Romana
A composite material covering a metal frame makes up the branch-like legs of Porta Romana's Twig Console with a stained wood top.

Photo courtesy of David Sutherland
One of my favorite pieces of all time, the re-editioned small tables designed by John Dickenson from David Sutherland. With a middle cinched with a rope, this tiny wonder is made of glass fiber mixed with concrete, providing a more durable material than the originals.

Photo courtesy of Stephen Antonson
Brooklyn-based artist Stephen Antonson creates amazing plaster pieces inspired by French masters Giacometti and Jean-Michel Frank. His Hex Table, with interlocking legs is a work of art. You can find it at Dessin Fournir showrooms.

Photo courtesy of Baker
With a round base and sweeping lines, Baker's Linea Table Light designed by the Pagani's is a pared-down beauty.

Photo courtesy of Karen Robertson
With retro flair, Karen Robertson's Clamshell Sconce of cast resin is perfect for seaside homes. A lot of designers have asked me where to find this, and voila!

Photo courtesy of Made Goods
A reinterpreted sunburst made of spiky, milk-white resin, Made Goods Serrat Mirror.

Photo courtesy of Stephen Antonson
Overlapping spheres of white plaster make for a curvaceous dimensional above a console or dresser. Another ethereal piece designed by artisan Stephen Antonson, through Dessin Fournir.

Photo courtesy of Made Goods
With the flair of a Serge Roche piece, Made Goods captures the essence of a French Palm circa 1930's Baroque Torchere.

Monday, January 27, 2014


Photos courtesy of Michele Willson

Vacation homes are a place to escape from the everyday. A getaway, a place that is comfortable and relaxed for entertaining friends or having family time, a second home is a wonderful escape. Palmer Weiss, the San Francisco-based Charleston-raised interior designer created a magical home for her clients in Lake Tahoe. Having a mother as an interior designer, she learned through osmosis, but she has the added benefit of going to business school and a banking career under her belt, making her a rare, valued combination in the design sphere. 
The clients found out about her work from seeing the room she did at the Elle Decor Showhouse in San Francisco. See, it does happen-- clients do come from show houses! This is her second project for the family. Reflecting on the design process, Weiss said, "We were not driven so much by the natural light as we were the view out of the windows. The house is nestled in tall pines and adjacent to the natural putt putt course so the view is all shades of greens and browns. We wanted to mirror that color palette on the inside to connect to the outdoors.  We did not want it to feel traditionally “mountainy” or bland."  Her work beautifully combines traditional elements with custom details, always location-appropriate. 

How do the clients use the house, are they there most weekends and summers?
They are up a great deal in the winter skiing. In the summer, they spend weeks at a time enjoying all of the mountain and lake activities. They are very close with extended family and love to host them as well as friends so they usually have a crew up there. That was one motivation for the new house and added bedrooms.

What did they ask for of the design you created?  Was it comfort, kid friendly, sophisticated country? They gave me a great deal of latitude in design and are generally game for most things we suggest. We wanted an updated and more modernized version of an East Coast mountain cabin. There was a definite emphasis here on durability and comfort. We tested almost everything with red wine (always a spill risk on cold winter nights), ketchup, etc. to make sure it could hold up to entertaining with kids and dogs.

This game nook off the living room is devoid of color and pattern, why is that? 
We kept the windows neutral in the entire great room and this space is mostly windows. The seat cushion has a small (but neutral) print to it. It is adjacent to the fireplace and we did not want to take the focus away from the reclaimed wood and custom cement surround.

Talk about bringing in color to the dining room and how you did it.
We started with the Claremont window fabric. I adore their prints – they feel so historic and timeless, yet updated and fresh at the same time. We pulled the tomato red out of the pattern and upholstered the Hollywood at Home chairs in a matching pleather (very kid friendly!). The cabinets are painted a dark olive color (Benjamin Moore Dragon’s Breath – how great is that name?!) which feels earthy without adding more dark wood and is a great backdrop for the owl photo.

What was the design mandate for the kitchen? Are they big cooks? 
The kitchen, entry, living room and dining room are all open to one another and the kitchen is the first thing you see when you walk in the door. We wanted to make it dramatic and dark with the emphasis on textures and details. The hood is custom designed and the hammered nickel hardware looks simultaneously rustic and glitzy against the black cabinetry. And the silvered Urban Electric pendants can be seen from outside the front door and add an element of funk and surprise when entering what might otherwise appear to be a traditional mountain cabin from the exterior architecture.

I n the master bedroom, soothing blues and a charming iron canopy bed. The room has a pretty feel to it, like a French country hotel.

A brightly patterned pillow and chevron print on a gray wooden chair add a dose of color in a corner.

An all-white bathroom with traditional touches is spa-like but not cold.

A guest bedroom with twin beds and a mix of furniture styles.

Palladium Travertine, a Tahoe-appropriate surface in the guest bath.

Striped camp blankets add a sense of fun to the bunk bed room.

What inspired the paint color and faux taxidermy in the kids inset bench area? 
We knew we wanted to use the Pendleton blankets and wanted a dark backdrop to make the stripes pop. "I loved the animal heads – sort of a tongue in cheek play on taxidermy that was apropos to a children’s room and felt almost like stuffed animals. They had the added bonus of being soft and light in case anyone decided to use the bench seat underneath them as a trampoline," she shared when I asked about the nook.

An outside seating area for year-round use has a fireplace and cozy chairs with big cushions.

Friday, January 24, 2014


Photo courtesy of Anthropologie
This canopy bed just might make me give up my custom upholstered headboard. I love its clean Parsons-style lines, perfect scale, and understated cerused driftwood oak finish. Very Tom Scheerer.  
 Just in case I don't get it, if you do, be sure to send me a picture of it in your bedroom so I can see how great it looks.  The Woodland Canopy Bed from Anthropologie channels just the right dose if island style and can work anywhere.

Thursday, January 23, 2014


Two things, Zebra and Malachite, have been on New York-based interior designer Lindsey Coral Harper's collecting radar for some time.  If you read Elle Decor and House Beautiful's websites, you may have noticed Lindsey got a double-dose of coverage recently, featuring her vibrant, color-filled Upper East Side apartment, and its proliferation of both black and white striped Zebra and shades-of-green Malachite accents.  Take a look, and get the collecting bug. What are you really into collecting, everywhere you go? Perhaps this will inspire you to pursue your passion for a particular theme.

Photos courtesy of House photography by Kelly Stuart
With a major affinity for decorative objects with color and flair, Lindsey's love for ornate objects with meaning and purpose have been a consuming passion over the years. 

I found this Zebra at C. Bell in West Palm Beach last year, and knew it was the perfect gift for my friend, the Zebra collector.

Working alongside Richard Keith Langham, she absorbed a love for pure color.

I have visited Casa Harper and this dresser is to die for.

Lindsey's nightstand, custom painted by her friend artist Jay Lohmann, is a wonderful interpretation of  Zebra.

A papier mache mask adds a bit of charm to a Chinese Chippendale chair.

Zebra's strategically placed on her etagere.


Switching gears, lets take a look at the malachite details she has incorporated in addition to the zebra.

An assortment of malachite boxes collected from near and far displayed on a malachite painted surface.

Lindsey's well-stocked bar with accessories with malachite accents.

Fantastic malachite plates found at a great vintage shop.

A brass-bordered box atop a stack of books.