Leopard is just Peachy

 I am just loving peach and pink these days, and I just adore it with this faux linx/leopard throw. Happy Friday.  
A little vignette from Meg Braff's Design and Decorations store in Locust Valley New York


The Swankster -- James Mont

In House Beautiful's December 2012 issue, my favorite decorator Meg Braff said:  "I'm wild for everything James Mont.  Designers know about him, but this may be the year that everyone else gets to know his over-the-top, theatrical furniture." Bring on the drama!

James Mont was a notorious, flamboyant, mid-century decorator whose client rolls included gangsters Lucky Luciano, movie stars Bob Hope and Lana Turner and composer Irving Berlin.   Mont had a red hot temper and was sent away to Sing-Sing for assaulting a colleague who subsequently committed suicide.  And then there was that nasty business of his wife who mysteriously died after 29 days of marriage.  Yes, he was a scoundrel, but also a design genius -- seriously  swanky with a flair for the dramatic. Todd Merrill wrote a wonderful article about him entitled "The Gangster's Favorite". 

Mont's mark on mid-century decorations, his exotic sense of style and relentless self-promotion made Asian-style modernism popular.  'Chinese modern is chic again, and nobody did it better than Mont. Such a dangerous man, but oh, what taste.'' Although Mont is credited with popularizing the mid-century fusion of Asian effects and Miesian (think glass & steel buildings) silhouettes, his interiors were rarely ever photographed.  The New York Times, The Godfather of Exotic Modernism, Oct 6, 1996.  This was probably due to the fact that his criminal clientele wanted to fly under the radar.   Mont said that his Asian esthetic was driven by his background, ''I am an Oriental,'' said the designer, who claimed was born in Constantinople in 1904. To him, ''the delicate touch of Oriental spice...is just as necessary in furniture design as it is in fine cooking.'' He was a con artist, a womanizer, a gambler and always about one step of the tax collector. But wow, his furniture is just so lavish and chic.

 Via the Paris Apartment

Via the Paris Apartment

Sofa Designed for the Worlds Fair



Dear Blogging Friends,

Due to a death in family (my father-in-law),  I will not be blogging during our customary Shiva period and will return to the net next Monday.  Be well and call your parents and tell them how much you love them.



Thanksgiving Centerpiece Inspriation

Aerin Lauder Throws A Thanksgiving Dinner Party. Photo: Claiborne Swanson Frank

I love Thanksgiving.  The past few years Thanksgiving has shifted to our house and I need to start thinking about the table.  There is just not enough time in the day....I know my table will not be as chic  as the on at Aerin Lauder's country house, but I thought I would throw her up there for some inspiration...

I need to come up with some centerpiece ideas...


Mastercraft Brass Tables

I have coveted a Mastercraft brass table since I first discovered them.  Where can you find these great looking tables? Well if you are lucky at auction or on Ebay;  stores like Circa Who and Palm Beach Regency get them or look alikes from time to time, and lets not forget 1st dibs where you are going to need to plonk down a serious amount of cash. They are so fabulous  --- please someone in Highpoint here my plea and produce them again! I want to have a custom one done for my  client's dining room and will photograph if that makes it into reality.

Here's what my latest search on for brass tables on 1st dibs yielded:

Mastercraft has some amazing brass bookcases, burl wood desks and lacquered credenzas as well...And how about that chair!
Fantastic Burl & Brass Mastercraft Desk by John Widdicomb