Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Textbook Tuesday | The Gardens of Bunny Mellon




Who was Bunny Mellon? Many of you may have heard the name, and if you are decor-obsessed like I am, you may even know a thing or two about this legendary heiress to the Listerine and Gillette fortune. Rachel Lambert 'Bunny' Mellon was an American self-taught and award-winning landscape designer and horticulture scholar. She was a confidante of Jacqueline Kennedy, and is credited with the White House's Rose Garden, Givenchy's personal gardens, as well as the revival of Louis XIV's kitchen garden at Versailles. Bunny passed away in 2014, at the age of 103 - and perhaps her long and storied life could be attributed to her passion for creating the perfect place for sitting, sniffing, eating, admiring, entertaining, and spending quiet time alone.

With Vendome Press' recent release, The Gardens of Bunny Mellon by Linda Jane Holden, we catch a rare glimpse of compiled photos commissioned for the Mellon's archives, illustrations of Mellon's own garden plans, sketches, and  watercolors (photographs by Roger Foley). Holden's text for this fantastic and historic book is based on extensive interviews with Mellon before her death and she was granted access by Mellon's family to her journals, correspondence, photos, and other memorabilia.



New images by Roger Foley of her cherished home in Oak Spring are perfectly intertwined with vintage photographs by Horst, Aarons, and others.




As a design-enthusiast, I have always been taken by the imagery of Bunny's interiors as well. The book captures many of these refined details, including the stunning and extensive cabbage and lettuceware collection she kept. Between her love of pottery and myrtle topiaries, Bunny truly has inspired a whole new generation of exterior and interior designers.


Three of my myrtle topiaries pictured below, for which my inspiration can be ultimately traced back to Bunny herself. I'm particularly proud of these because despite my black thumb (and with the help of my husband), I've managed to maintain them for over 3 years. I've often been asked about their care, and although I am no horticulturist I've found a good weekly soaking, monthly fertilize, and daily being set in the sunniest window in the house has done the trick:


And, once again inspired by the likes of Bunny, a lettuceware collection is next on my wishlist:

Tory Burch




The Gardens of Bunny Mellon is a history lesson and a perfect book to add to any landscape or decor enthusiast's library. Perhaps for upcoming Mother's Day? You can purchase your copy of this delightfully gathered tome here


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Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Dissecting the Details: Shelley Johnstone



I'm back again for another Dissecting the Details installment on LDV today! I'm so in love with all of the rich design details that go into creating a dining room, and for that matter the thought that goes into a beautiful tablescape. One of my favorite designers that knocks it out of the park every time is Shelley Johnstone, and if you hop to the article on Paloma's blog I've dissected 4 key features that she uses to create such stunning spaces. Here's a little taste of what you'll find to entice you:






Let's just say I'd want to stay at the dinner table for hours on end! If you look back to each of the spaces featured here (even the bedroom!), you'll notice that the ceiling never goes forgotten. Shelley's signature style is to paint the '5th wall' blue, and I think it's spectacular! Shelley recently shared with Elle Decor that a favorite is 'Breath of Fresh Air' by Benjamin Moore. Note also that the reflection of a lacquer finish will really increase the appearance of the height of the ceiling. To see more from the designer hop to her portfolio here, and of course be sure to follow her on her always-inspiring IG account here.

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Thursday, December 20, 2018

Dissecting the Details | M + M Interior Design



I'm excited to be concluding 2018's Dissecting the Details series over on La Dolce Vita blog with a fantastic design duo, M + M Interior Design. I've fallen in love with the polished, traditional, and sophisticated the work of Leslie Martin and Kim Meardon, the Chicago-based sisters behind this design firm.  And with 9 children between the two of them, they truly know how to create stylish and functional kids spaces! Head over to view 4 key features these talented ladies utilize in children's rooms (photography by Heather Talbert). Here's a teaser for you:










How lovely! Be sure to follow M + M Interior Design on their fabulous instagram feed, and check out their extensive portfolio here, they are one of my favorites to follow and I know you'll thank me!


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Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Southern Style Now Showhouse 2018



Have you been following along with the recent reveal of this years Southern Style Now show home on social media? This is where I find hashtags so helpful; you can see all of the tour images that I've featured here under the hashtag #southernstylenow. This Charleston home was built in 1844, and has me convinced I likely should have been a Southerner! Fifteen amazing southern designers were invited to decorate a room in the house (by Robert Leleux, the Founder of Southern Style Now and by Jill Waage, Editor-in-Chief of Traditional Home). 

Let's start with my favorite space, I think it's the chartreuse walls that have me in love:





The Gracie wallpaper in orange is the most memorable aspect of the entry and stairway, those blossoms are oversized at about 2 feet tall each!









I also loved the coral colors in this ladies sitting room, I think it's safe to say color is back in a very strong way!





I only wish I could have seen this home in person, but I'm thankful for the fact that we get to enjoy it through the powers of the internet ;) Hope you enjoyed it as well.

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Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Textbook Tuesday | Inspired Design by Jennifer Boles



Inspired Design: The 100 Most Important Interior Designers of the Past 100 Years, by Jennifer Boles and published by Vendome Press, is arguably the most important book of the season! Jennifer, long time blogger behind The Peak of Chic, is one of my heroes because much like me, she celebrates the work of others and studies the designers of the past and present to learn from them. Jennifer's blog, and now this book, are a rich resource of every decor style and every need-to-know designer - she quite literally gives us an extensive history lesson of the landscape of this field.


So how did Jennifer come up with the list of 100? She explains in a recent interview for Architectural Digest:

 “We put it out there on social media, on Instagram, Facebook, the blog, and asked people who they thought were the most important designers of the century ...[s]ome of my favorite designers today, the ones I would hire for myself, didn’t make the list. Which I hope people understand, because it doesn’t mean those designers aren’t any less talented. It’s about the contribution to the history of design that mattered most.” 

She goes on to explain, “[i]f someone is not familiar with Albert Hadley—which is hard to believe—but if that’s the case, then I have to show his library for Brooke Astor, as one of the best examples of his work. It’s been seen it so many times, but it just has to be featured” (quotes via AD).

In this over-sized tome (400 pages!) each designer is profiled with a summary of what we can learn from them and how they changed decorating forever, and 3-4 images of their best work are shown. The book is divided into chapters based on categories starting with The Big Six (you know Albert Hadley and Sister Parish had to be on there), and including lists like 'A Century of Women,' or those currently 'Making Their Mark' (think Miles Redd and Alexa Hampton). You can see an example bio with one of The Big Six, Billy Baldwin, just enough information to spark the readers interest and help them learn more:






A Tom Scheerer–designed room at Lyford Cay in the Bahamas featured in Inspired Design
What I love most about this stunning tome is the ability to continuously learn from it; it's a rich educational resource, and I love to keep learning. In fact I'd go as far as to argue that Inspired Design should be required reading for every interior design student. Put this one on your must-have list for your own design library, and as the perfect gift for any design-lover on your list! You can purchase your copy here.

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