Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Do You Want Your Home To Look Rich?

There was a time when the homes of the wealthy were the stuff dreams were made of. They can afford interior designers, and buy any beautiful thing they want. Homes of the rich are often published in shelter magazines or in expensive coffee table books, and many of us could only dream of hitting the lottery to achieve such splendor.

The homes of the wealthy have a certain look

At Houzz this month, I present some wonderful iconic things that look rich. And to inspire you,  I have this round up of images to refer to. You can find versions of everything you see here, at real girl prices at Houzz.

The over size bleached tortoise shell is something I have seen in homes of the rich - Interior design Melissa Rufty


As money was loose in the 1990's many in the middle class were able to acquire trappings once reserved for the rich. Anything from paying for plastic surgery to stone counter tops to designer furnishings on a credit card made it possible. Ralph Lauren led the way and created a whole industry of the inherited look of the wealthy. If you didn't have old things that came down in the family, Ralph Lauren showed you the way to get it by just buying it all at once.

A beautiful folding screen is de rigueur
With the economic down turn, down sizing in all forms took to the forefront. Smaller homes became popular. Self decorating gained panache. Still, nice things that look more expensive than they really are fill in the blanks.

Rich people have always loved Andy Warhol

Classic pieces are often found in the homes of the rich.  Whether they have the patina of time, or are the latest trend, we all seem to recognize what looks rich.

Hand painted wall paper or murals are very costly

Three trends that rich people love: Hand painted wall paper, antiques and silk drapes

I think we have all matured, not really striving to be wannabes, but rather to make pretty homes that showcase style, personality, and yes, a certain level of taste.

Silver punch bowls or wine coolers are so expensive and gorgeous - Styled by Tricia Foley

Rich people love orchids and now we can get them at the supermarket too - Lovely in a silver wine cooler

We have became educated savvy shoppers, able to seek out the high and low, and mix it all up creating a wonderful effect.

Beautiful and unique  designer china graces the tables of the rich - Go see the copy cat at Houzz!

I had a great time finding things that are wonderful copy cats of some very expensive things. It's just a matter of choosing a few for the mix you personally cultivate.

The skirted table looks even more rich with a custom tailored skirt -  Interior designer Tom Sheerer

Expensive and custom made skirted table AND a studded floor and hand painted wallpaper!

The skirted round table - a classic one by Grant Gibson

Do you find the homes of the wealthy drool worthy these days? Or have we moved on?

How many homes in Veranda have we drooled over?

Little table love - This classic French style one is very popular - I give you a couple of affordable choices at Houzz
Add an Oushak to your love shack for a luxe look - Interior design by Valorie Hart

Industrial style vintage lighting shows up nowadays in homes with big  decor budgets

One of kind unique furniture like the chair with the curved arms - Check out the one I found at Houzz

Luxury is a skirted bedspread with a deep drop ruffle - Joni Webb Designs

You know it looks rich! Check out the one I found- You'll love the price!

Pretty glassware - not only for the rich - I found a set of 12 that looks like 18th century stemware

The rich can afford custom lamp shades - I found some that look custom - That's Sophia Loren back in the day

Blue and white Chinese pottery - a classic for sure

Who doesn't want an Hermes throw?

Everyone knows an Hermes throw is expensive

There are no Hermes knock-offs, but if you fold this one just right and squint...by Dwell Studio

Monograms - I used to mock the rich for using them, now I love them - Interior design Melissa Rufty

Hope you enjoyed the round up and go check out my picks at Houzz.
I think it's more fun sometimes to have the affordable versions, though I wouldn't throw the real thing out of bed.

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Sunday, February 26, 2012

Glitterati Oscar Book List

It's Oscar Night!
Here are a few great books that you will love because you are a movie buff!


I've read this one and it's wonderful!




I'm adding this one to my bookshelf for sure!


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Friday, February 24, 2012

Emily Henderson Open Sky

I am not big on all the sign-in shopping sites out there, but I am a big fan of Emily Henderson. She is selling some of her style go-to items on a site called Open Sky. And since she is a fellow blogger way before she became an HGTV star, she knows we need affordable cute things to buy.

Emily Henderson at Open Sky - I hope one day Emily writes a style book

So check out her first collection called Gold Rush.

Emily Henderson's coffee table is a Gold Rush!

 I think Emily has done more to bring back vintage (and new) items in a gold finish, you know those old brass animals and such languishing in thrift stores and flea markets, or gathering dust on your granny's end tables. She makes brass lamps look chic again. It's like jewelry for the room. 

Emily Henderson at Open Sky, and a good tutorial on how to style a bookshelf


Emily Henderson at Open Sky

So take a look at Emily's wares on Open Sky.
Have many of you brought a gold rush back into your decor?

Emily Henderson in her living room

Happy Weekend!

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Thursday, February 23, 2012

What Do You Give Up For Lent?

Deboorah Milne from Dumbwit Tellher wrote a great article on bars in House of Fifty.

She included non alcoholic bars, which might sound like an oxymoron, but believe me after the holiday season in New Orleans that starts at Thanksgiving and just ended yesterday on Ash Wednesday, one can look forward to forty days of no booze during Lent!

With a pretty bar like this featuring non alcohol  drinks, ice tea and refreshing natural soft drinks, Lent will be painless

Read more and see some cute bar carts and set-ups at the House of Fifty blog

from House of Fifty

The latest issue of House of Fifty

So what are you giving up for Lent? Got any good cocktail recipes without booze?

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Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Phew! It's Ash Wednesday

We are tired!
Took it easy today. Put away boxes filled with masks, wigs, and accessories. Put the costumes back in their place in the closet. Took down the Mardi Gras decorations outside the house. Checked my email and read a few blogs.
We had a wonderful time. The weather was perfect, we ran into friends, and are so happy to have another Mardi Gras together. Alberto is working on a video that he will post on Facebook.

In the meantime, may I present The King and Queen of the Sea!

Valorie Hart and Alberto Paz Mardi Gras 2012

I originally wore this costume before Katrina - Sabina (in pink) organized The Krewe of Mermaids - on the other side of me is Stephanie (in blue), and then Robin (as Ariel) - All three of them lost their homes in Katrina and left New Orleans - Alberto was King Neptune that day (Sabina made his robe) -  Sabina's husband Joe was a cute sailor surrounded and seduced by the mermaids - Sabina's nephew PJ was the Naked Chef - the brilliant Tracy Thompson made the wig I am wearing, given to me by Sabina -  It's made of curling ribbon - We are in The French Quarter on our way back from marching in the Krewe of St. Anne parade, a walking group of hundreds of artists and musicians (anyone can join in)  that starts early in the morning on Mardi Gras from the Marigny/Bywater and ends at the Moonwalk on the Mississippi River in The French Quarter

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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Shopping The Closet

Happy Mardi Gras!

  • Make coffee. Check.
  • Watch parade coverage on local TV. Check.
  • Go out on front porch to hear a passing band playing. Wave to 30 guys who are the resplendent Irish Channel Walking Club high stepping by at 7 AM. Get kissed by a guy in full Mardi Gras regalia who gives me a yellow rose.
  • Shop my closet for costumes that Alberto and I will wear today as we head to the French Quarter.
Drawing of my dressing room and closet by PVE Patricia Van Essche
More photos later!

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Monday, February 20, 2012

Olatz Interiors

Olatz Schnabel is opening an interior design business, Olatz Interiors. I love her work. It jumped off the pages this morning, and I wanted to share my delight with you.

You can read all about Olatz in the current T Magazine.

Olatz has the knack for mixing Euro and American influences, the old with the new, creating truly unique rooms that I would love to live in.

A one hundred year old bath tub installed in a newly constructed bathroom

The living room - LOVE the columns turned into lamps - You can get a similar look by perching a table lamp on top of a column - All the fabulous art work is by Julian Schnabel

A view onto the garden - Hard to believe this is in the middle of Soho in New York

The master bedroom - Just a wonderful use of color and textiles

Old French doors installed in the entry hall - Perfection!

High and low - Restoration Hardware chair in front of Julian Schnabel painting

Olatz Schnabel in her bedroom

The amazing kitchen - My favorite shade of green - You see it used all over Spain


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