Thursday, March 25, 2010

Another look for less...

The tables Kelly's craving

My living room with my salvaged coffee table

I just saw a table (top) that Kelly at Little French Nest is craving and thought this post might inspire her. Check out her post (and her amazing blog). And here is my follow up comment, which you all might find useful. And don't you just LOVE that mirror in her photo! Let's try to make one... some super-caffeinated day-after-never-gonna-happen.

Kelly, these tables are beautiful! They're very similar to the (outrageously expensive) ones from Vaughan that I've been cyber-stalking for years! (below) Then one lucky day I found a perfect square, glass-top, iron coffee table in a friend's garage. It wasn't the Vaughan, but it had nice lines, a glass top...sort of like finding Mr. Good Enough. The base was dark, rusted iron (she'd used it outdoors). I wired brushed it 'til it should have bled then set to recreating the Vaughan finish. (Sort of like taking Mr. Good Enough to Bradley Cooper's hairdresser.) After I tried many failed gold leaf techniques (don't even bother on something that spindly), I was finally resigned to layering it in various gold leaf paints. I still plan to add some dark undertones with a dry brush technique and then possibly one last try at a little gold leaf. Though the knot design isn't exactly what I'd wanted, it's kept me, my living room and my pocketbook pretty happy. Just saying, you might try it with something if you find one with good proportions and lines--or have one made in plain iron.
the Vaughan table

  sorry for the dark, unprofessional photo
I'd love to know where the ones in your picture are from. TDF! Here are those pricey beauties from Vaughan in all their catalog glory. Those Louis legs still have me swooning.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Yellow, black and white...I just love it!

I just read a post on my favorite blog of all time, Chinoiserie Chic, about inheriting our parents' design aesthetic. Do we or don't we? It got me thinking about the bold yet traditional approaches my mother's taken over the years, especially about one approach by which I will forever be awed and impressed: her little ode to yellow, black and white. The year was 1972. I know, I look so young, right? It was our first home in a small, uninspiring new development in Northern California. But Bonnie was not daunted by the banality of this neighborhood. She decorated with gusto; and I will say, she knocked it out of the park. There were peacocks and Eames chairs in the living room, cork walls in the dining area... but it was the kitchen/family area that will forever be branded on my brain. She papered the entire kitchen and adjacent family room in a shiny black vinyl that was covered in a white bamboo trellis. Very similar to the one pictured below... But scattered about every 10-12" over my mother's trellis patterned paper were giant, bold yellow poppies. Tailored white drapes hung in the family room with bright yellow tape at lead edge and along the valance. And over what I'd like to think was a white Saarinen table, was a yellow faux bamboo light fixture. While I can't remember the exact sofa, I know it was black leather with buttons that would catch on my shorts. The whole thing had a very Jonathan Adleresque crispness, along with his sense of humor and fun. Not long ago, after buying Kelly Wearstler's Modern Glamour, I showed these pictures to my mom. She laughed, "Oh my God, it's so 1970's..." We fondly remembered that bright, happy space and in unison we both exclaimed, "I just loved it!"

I just found a woman who really loves this color combo! It's her whole blog.

Images: Kelly Wearstler, blackwhiteyellow.