This week The Skirted Roundtable tackles accessorizing, the final touches that make a room special. We talk about how to accessorize shelves, how we feel about using books that no one has, or ever will, read, and what we think about mantlescapes and lampshades, among other things.
Bookshelves and lampshades by Charlotte Moss
As always, we encourage you to leave a comment with your thoughts and ideas. The comments have all been so great lately, and they encourage even more conversation. And, be sure to listen in the coming weeks when we will be interviewing a few of America's top interior designers!!
Shelves accessorized by Charles Faudree
The idea I liked best - y'all didn't quite get there: The beauty of a working room as opposed to a staged room, work materials as accessories. A room where things (other than photo shoots) get done.
The great frosted/clear bulb fight was fun. Chandelier bulbs can be migraine triggers for me.
Think I prefer to accessorize with (for the most part) things that I can or would use. Linda, you're so funny... the Charles Faudree room feels so staged and uncomfortable to me (maybe it's in a showhouse?) I'd be afraid to remove a book from one of those shelves.
Joni, I always wondered if the flowers in your home were real or artificial - now I know. Potted flowers. That's the BEST idea! Why didn't I think of that?! Megan, I love orchids, but I kill them. Any suggestions?
So many ideas. I'll now be searching for an "old fashioned stamp," pictures to hang from my bookcases....
About books...I like the look od uniformity, but the "idea" of useless books lining shelves just "sticks in my craw" (I love this expression and the whole history of it....but that's another story.) I think even Charlotte Moss has her bookshelves full of books she actually uses. Oh, and one last thing....I love books in a Dining Room. Duel purpose room, especially when one does not eat often in the room.
Phew...long winded here....sorry!
They say to add a few ice cubes a few time a week. The key is not to over water. Which is why for, the ever neglectful plant owner, ME,these work well.
Katie, I LOVE the fiddle head ficus! I found that they're seasonal. You can't find them anywhere in the spring. I tried to find them one day when we were installing a house and I ignorantly thought we could just run out and pick a couple up. Not so! Grab them when you see them!
clients who dont read and have decorators supporting it by propping them
all this talk - is not the point of your blogs
to show your work - stop putting up others pictures , put pictures of your jobs - let us see and decide.
Do you have "pre-pro" meetings? You come up with topics, did it occur to any of you to have cdt put up photos of the job(s) you all spoke so much about?
Your not having a girlfriend conversation - you have an audience, you invited us, now serve dinner -did it occur to any of you that while we listened we would open a second window and want to see what she what was being talked about .
Your talking about visual things -you have the power to both
" the picture is worth a thousand words "
p.s dont judge the anons - because we dont have or want and id
And the reason why bloggers show other people's work is to make a point. We don't all have 100s of clients a year with 100s of pictures. At this point I'm lucky to have five good clients going in this economy.
Also, have YOU ever tried to decorate 20 shelves with NO books? I'd love to see you try. When clients have empty BOOKcases and no books, what are you supposed to do? fill the BOOKCASES with toys?
You seem to really have a problem with SRT - why dont you just stop listening - you might find something much better to do with your 30 minutes. I mean - if I don't like a program, I don't watch it, rather than just complain about it. I don't see the point.
AND one last point - the reason why ANONS are so aggravating is that there may be 3 ANONS - and it's hard to tell if it is just one person or two or three. Just make up a fake name or say Anon2 - whenever you sign in then we can know if its the same aNon as last week. Understand?
1. Throws in luscious colors in cashmere or mohair on a sofa, chair, or bed
2. Pattern in general
3. Patterned pillows-antique Fortuny, antique Aubusson, Cowtan & Tout linen velvet or velvet epingle, hand-painted silk, just to name a few
4. Silk flowers-Diane James are exquisite-sold at very high end stores like Neiman Marcus. Sophy Dahy Designs also makes beautiful ones. I have them all over my house and guests walk up and smell them. Dust them weekly like anything else with a dust feather or canned air.
5. Where was the discussion of creating beautiful tablescapes?
6. I love a "staged" cocktail table. Don't you and most clients have a library or home office for a work surface?
7. Lampshades in red, green, peach, black, and beige silk can be wonderful in the right room. I also like lining a shade in pale pink.
8. I ALWAYS keep the dust jackets on books.
To listen to you all, you would think you liked rooms sparse and functional, devoid of many accessories. To me, accessorizing is where the real art of decorating comes in. But then, I adore hats, gloves, stilettos, and designer handbags too. I would have liked to have heard what you do like.
P.S. to Joni-I told you to stop permitting anonymous comments many times. You could and should have as far as I am concerned. They are neither constructive nor enjoyable.
As for the Anon who asked why we don't show our own pics, as Joni said, we do show our own work on our own blogs when appropriate and we all show pics of other designer's work to illustrate points. There's another reason we have to be careful about our own pics - if you show your own work in a blog that you might want to submit for publishing, magazines may well reject the project because it was shown before. I ran a long story on my blog this week on a project I did and the photographer's process of shooting the space. I am running the risk that no one will want to publish it, but felt it was worth it to showcase the photographer. And, I had displayed the photo of another designer as part of that post and they asked me to remove the image because it's under consideration for publication and they didn't want to ruin their chances. So, please don't just assume you know all the reasons why we do or don't do certain things.
we do ask for suggestions, but you have realize that when anon asks that I be removed from the SRT - it's hard to be gracious about it. whatever.
As for pictures being shown - we do show our own work on our blogs - except Megan - her clients have requested anonyminity. I do think I put my work up for discussion and it's been good and bad. And I do try to use illustrations that match what we talk about. For instance - holiday decorating - those images were the exact ones we discussed. But as for having the pictures for every example we talk about it - that would be impossible. hopefully we are able to describe things without the visual. And being as this is a conversation - things veer off into topics that weren't planned.
As for this not being a conversation between girlfriends - that is where you are wrong. We all are missing in our real lives girlfriends and boyfriends who share our intense love of design. Therefore, we are drawn to blogging to meet others like ourselves. the SRT is just an extension - an audio version - of blogging friends talking about design.
And finally, we don't call ourselves experts, nor is this a college course, we don't charge to listen - it's just all good fun hopefully - and hopefully, you will get some ideas along the way and listen to some pretty fabulous guest interior designers too.
I am so sorry you felt that I am not one for accessorizing! Have you ever seen my house - I am bulging at the seams!!! But - perhaps you were equating what we do for clients and what we like ourselves. Plus, the three of us live in totally different places. Megan has a very tiny beach house with 4 people and 2 dogs - she doesn't have the luxury of space. linda, lives alone in a townhouse - with more space and I live in a house with more things than space.
but i really think you might have misread me because I am a shopoholic for my house. You are right that we discussed decorating trends we see on the wane - like throws and trims. Decorating seems to be trending towards more clean spaces, gray furniture, bigger and few accessories and perhaps that is where we are heading - but I struggle between this and the love of clutter everyday and the clutter wins out.
Silk flowers though are personal, just like frosted vs. clear lightbulbs. Now who would think you could argue about lightbulbs for 5 minutes?
Great, great comment!!!! Thanks!
about tablescapes - you know, we try to limit the recording to 30 minutes. We had planned to really talk about shelves - how we like to decorate shelves and then we veered off that as it usually happens. We never got around to tablescapes - that would have been another 30 minutes. as for coffee tables- I do love staged coffee tables! my whole house is staged but unfortunately - my husband messes up my coffee table with his books and junk that I am forever trying to restage behind him!!! Ive seen your house - parts of it - and I agree, it is absolutely beautiful! My house is very staged also - I wouldn't have it any other way. I love to change around my tables all the time - I brought up how I struggle with dining room table staging though. Right now I am happy with mine finally! But it might change again soon.
We are probably more alike than not i would guess.
I am a reader, so books are somewhat sacred to me and I would never just buy books for deco reasons....call me snob! My books naturally creep up all over the place, not just in shelves, but on the floor stucked up against the wall, on tables...
But I have to say I've got them for clients, who basically had only a bunch of paperbacks to account for.
But then again, I tried to relate, like books of their heritage, or beautiful coffee table books, one actually wants to open up once in a while!
Anyway, love all that, I love different shades of lamps, clear bulbs, live flowers, some plants,
lived in place with all the accesoires needed to get through life. I am hot about all types of collections, shells, boxes, miniatures, artwork, so on. They are great items to decorate with. Jewelry too!
Bit British country estate mixed with modern touches....
One last thing: change is good, also in decorating, otherwise it looks staged, dusty and aged after a while.
Good listening, as always!
We have a major book dilema in our house...I imagine we could stock one of the bookless clients shelves and not even notice a dent.Our problem is they get pulled out so much...and never put back that everything is quite wonky...often. Yet such is life in this wonky casa.
Flowers...Nothing like real...but a dirty little secret of mine is to have a few great silks (in my case tropical,,,heliconia, ginger) and nest them in with tons of real greens (banana leaves, palm, philodendron...) you would never know...and it s still mostly living (and changing)
Thanks again for you wonderful perspective...always a joy!
Oh come on--ALL of them have requested that?
Interesting to read all the comments. . . Joni, yours are the most fun!!
I read that Jackie O had huge stacks of books in her house--- piles everywhere. It was something Hillary Clinton tried to replicate in her house in Rye, without much success.
My book display could definitely use a magic touch- but they always have to be within reach...
I'm in the process of getting rid of all my fake flowers & plants (maybe keeping 2 or 3 nice ones). I love bringing in real plants & I'm going to work really hard to get more of them & make them live in my house. I have quite a few already & they really aren't that hard to take care of.
It's 6:16 pm PST on Sunday and I can't get the SRT to play for me. Did you suspend it or is there a snafu with the transmission? I hope it's back up and running soon...accessorizing is one of my favorite topics.
I just skimmed through the comments section after I posted mine and I have to say I'm appalled by the Anonymous person. GO AWAY! This forum is to be savored by those of us who appreciate these three women's perspectives. And, like anything offered through media, take what you like and leave the rest. If you don't like it, don't listen. And, frankly, you are a coward hiding behind Anonymous. It's not hard to put your name in.
But I like to update it with fresh flowers, interesting vintage items, mixed in with stacked books etc. btw, if I were ever to use fake, Sophie Dahy IS THE WAY TO GO. Her work is incredible.
As for pillows, that was Joni who mentioned being into big color blocks. I actually love to use pattern on pillows. And my home own is not short on patterns!
and as for anon, I feel like I'm dealing with a petulant pre-teen, who needs to argue just to be contrary. You tire/bore me. My work can be seen on flickr, and my own site. Have a blast.
Carry on gals!
So many relevant topics broached... With rooms, I personally want them to feel "real." I like to think that the pics I'm looking in the mags are real & used, although I know how staged they probably really are. I love "shopping the house" with clients & trying to get them to see beauty in things that previously they thought of as junk. I've had some geat find in garages & storage areas & even yards. ... And yes, like you all said, taking the dust jackets off books is the easiest thing to do! Of course it's often the pretty things you find on a shopping trip that makes the room come alive, but it really is important to me that spaces feel personal & lived in & real.
That being said, there are definitely many cases when my clients don't have anything for a space & I've gone out & purchased pretty antique books that fit the color scheme & accessorized spaces to the hilt. I always love how these rooms look and of course am picking pieces that speak to me & that I think they would love, but sometimes I do feel a little fakey when doing rooms this way.
oh and i have to say i LOVE throws on my sofa & chairs because I am one of those weird ppl who pretty much never actually sits (at least in my own home) but rather curls up anywhere & everywhere. Don't know what it is but I just always want a blanket on me so we have them all over. (And like Megan said, it does get messy! Plus having down throw pillows, it looks like I've nested wherever I've sat!) But I do temd to put them in client's homes because I guess I just think they want them too- hahaha but maybe not many ppl are like this! :)
For the flowers, I'm really not into fake ones in my own home or clients' homes but am not adverse to seeing them in others' homes & have seen them look really pretty. But I agree with you that you almost stop seeing them when they're not real. I mixed in a fake topiary with my real ones (because i KILL plants) & people think it's real but I know it's fake and it just bothers me.
...on the plant note, I just LOVE ferns & topiaries & pretty trees inside but I am a KILLAH!!! I try SO SO HARD and it's just awful. TO the point where my husband rolls his eyes when I bring a new one home. BUT Megan, will be trying an orchid again (I actually killed mine pretty quickly) and will try the ice cube thing. You also brought up ferns in the bathroom & I think I'm going to give them another go! Ours is so steamy and maybe I can get a little thriving bathroom garden going on a shelf??
And as far as the lightbulbs go, I really do like them both ways- clear & frosted. I guess it's all what you're going for but I have clear ball ones in my chandy in the DR and it casts the cool stick shapes all over the ceilings, which -like Linda- I love. I also like to see crystal sparkles thrown around... But the frosted often feels more functional for general... And I have yet to try those silicon-tipped ones.
Ok, so I guess in the end I like spaces to be a mix of beauty & function & love it when functional things look beautiful. But also, if you're someone who's crazy over design & decorating & accessories like most of us are, then I do think that it almost is functional to have lots of accessories that aren't truly functional in the traditional sense because they're useful to us personally bc they're beautiful & make us happy.
Ok, I wrote a book & am SO sorry for the long comment but there's just so much you make me think of! :) Snowed in here & just got chatty!!