antiques, inspiration, interiors

daybed dreaming

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I’m at a tag sale and there is a long, narrow Victorian daybed with a simple curved shape in a cherry wood stain with a blue ticking mattress. It’s clearly old but in good condition. The price is reasonable. I circle it and circle it again. A young couple is also beginning to circle it. It’s elegant, we say and we love it.

But I can’t think what to do with it, just now. Continue reading “daybed dreaming”

art, books, inspiration, interiors

on my bookshelf: “Quiet Patterns”

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Bird and Pomegranate (William Morris)

Two things are happening in our homes these days: we are back in love with wallpaper (It seems we were afraid of it for a while) and we are taking a holistic approach to designing our houses and decorating our rooms. That is to say, we are interested in beauty and our overall well-being. Of course I couldn’t be more pleased. But honestly it is Abigail Edward’s newly published book Quiet Patterns: Gentle Designs for Interiors that really got my mind going on this matter. In it she argues (softly) that, when incorporated properly, pattern (many of which are derived from nature and childhood images reminding us of the countryside or secret garden or enchanted forest of our youth) has the power to transform a space and to soothe our weary modern souls. Continue reading “on my bookshelf: “Quiet Patterns””

interiors

dressing a bed in-between seasons: 5 easy tips

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Here on the East Coast we are already feeling a tinge of autumn in the air and some of the leaves have even started to change. There is something invigorating (and perhaps bittersweet) about leaving summer behind and moving on to cooler days. One of the things that I love about the changing seasons is the chance to create different moods in the rooms of our homes (in elegant country style of course). But sometimes, these changes (like most changes) feel better coming gradually. Continue reading “dressing a bed in-between seasons: 5 easy tips”

antiques, featured designer, inspiration, interiors

featured designer: Liliane Hart on Martha’s Vineyard

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A casual entrance hall with botanical prints, wallpaper above wainscoting, and an antique French country bench.

I thought I’d continue the coastal theme that I started last week, and show you some rooms decorated by designer Liliane Hart in homes on Martha’s Vineyard. One of them was just featured in the July/August issue of House Beautiful and I was immediately drawn to the home-spun, yet elegant simplicity of Hart’s approach. She is a new favorite here at ECS. Continue reading “featured designer: Liliane Hart on Martha’s Vineyard”

antiques, inspiration, interiors

seaside notes: 3 vignettes with coral

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You already know about my love of interior vignettes (an art form open to everyone, one that resides in our humble homes, and one that can be permanent or fleeting). So, despite my affinity for things with a countryside vibe (more land than sea, I suppose), I am taken by some of the coral sculptures that have become popular accessories over the last few years. No longer a fad, they seem to be sticking around and can look quite elegant and timeless—giving a room a summery, seaside feel, but also as interesting objects reminding us of the sea throughout the year (because isn’t remembering what our “things” are really about?). Continue reading “seaside notes: 3 vignettes with coral”

antiques, inspiration, interiors

collecting: antique oyster plates

 

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Imagine a summer day long ago, make it the Victorian era, somewhere in the countryside, of course, when there was no such thing as air conditioning, but there were sleeping porches and mosquito nets and lavish meals starting with oysters served on beautiful plates. Continue reading “collecting: antique oyster plates”

antiques, featured designer, gardens, inspiration, interiors

featured designer: Tricia Foley

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Tricia Foley is a woman ahead of her time. Long before the all-white, minimalist look we see everywhere on Instagram these days, author and stylist Tricia Foley captured our imaginations with her casual, chic country look. Her trademarks–all those shades of white, natural elements, textures, layers, and artful displays of treasured objects and collections—are commonplace now. But, there is only one Tricia Foley, and she is a designer whose work I return to often for inspiration. Continue reading “featured designer: Tricia Foley”