Style Court

Nine Years of Textiles, Art History, Gardens, and a Little Mental Traveling with Courtney Barnes


Romancing the Plaid

The other day I purchased Tartan: Romancing the Plaid, and I've been planning to post a review. But then I saw Annie Kelly's coverage for 1stdibs, complete with superb images. There's not much more for me to add, except to say the book includes many fun pop-culture photos that offer an interesting balance. Irreverent contemporary fashion, Abercrombie and Fitch ads, and Tiffany windows are juxtaposed with centuries-old paintings to convey tartan's broad appeal.

If you are a serious textile enthusiast, flip through the book if you can. Apart from the rich images, the text is comprehensive. It's a great resource.

BTW: The Scottish Weaver sells blankets similar to decorator Barrie Benson's as seen in Domino's October issue.

Above top, Charlotte's wedding from Sex and the City as seen in Rizzoli's Tartan.

Happy Halloween!

Carolyne Roehm offers us a girlie, glittering Halloween complete with silver pumpkins and candelabra swathed in cobwebs. She says she was inspired by Miss Havisham’s decaying banquet room in Charles Dickens’s Great Expectations.

Reader Request: Ivanka Trump Apartment

Interior design above, Emma Jane Pilkington, as seen in House & Garden, January 2005; photo by Oberto Gili.

It seems Ivanka Trump's chic apartment was featured on Oprah yesterday. So back by popular demand are those tear sheets of her digs. I've changed the labels on my related past posts; just click on "Ivanka," below, to see previously posted images and find sources.


A Michelle Nussbaumer Holiday

I know it's early, but this ethereal tree grabbed my attention tonight as I flipped through Southern Accents lavish holiday issue. It was done up by Michelle Nussbaumer who has a very personal, worldly style. Using vintage gold-rimmed intaglios on a small flocked tree exemplifies her classic but unexpected approach. The black velvet ribbon just makes the branches feel icier.

Photography by Tria Giovan

Book Mania

With all of the new book releases, I could really use substantial shelves like this. Kelly Wearstler and sons photographed by Douglas Friedman for Bazaar's special issue.

Yet another new design book, Vogue Living: Houses, Gardens, People,from Vogue Editor, Hamish Bowles, is scheduled to be released tomorrow. I think many of us will be racing to our local book store for a copy.

Personally I'm hoping to see more views of Carolina Irving's Long Island home (she's Vogue Living's globe-trotting Style Editor.) Above, Irving is photographed by Francois Halard for Vogue, October 2006; Below, the weekend residence with a hanging suzani from her friend, Christian Louboutin, and a Directoire sofa covered in Indian raw silk from decorator Peter Dunham, as seen in Vogue Living, fall 2006.

I expect the blogosphere to soon be buzzing about the book and can't wait to read everyone's take.

BTW: Lisa Fine and Carolina Irving are scheduled to have a big launch of their hand-embroidered blouse collection at Charlotte Moss the week after Thanksgiving.


For Anna

Last week Australian decorator Anna Spiro did some posts on small tablescapes with flowers and books. I thought she might appreciate Chloe Warner's bedside tables, as seen in Domino's November issue.

Chloe's lamps call to mind Megan's (aka Beach Bungalow 8's) fab flea market find, the lime-green bird.

Just a reminder, if you score a lovely creature like Chloe's or Megan's at an antique shop or on eBay, lighting centers, such as Atlanta's Sunlighting Lamp and Shade, can easily transform the figure into a chic lamp. For silver julep cups similar to the one above, try Madison. If you are on the hunt for sterling, try Shelton Gallery.

Sunlighting is located at 4990 Roswell Road, (404) 257-0043. A vast selection of ready-made lighting is also available. Photos above by Melanie Acevedo.

Playing Around

A possible pairing: Bennison's "Songbird," left, in aqua/yellow on linen, with KWID's "Imperial Trellis" in citrine.

Tartan Mania

In the 70s my mom wrapped Christmas gifts with plain craft paper and assorted taffeta tartan ribbons (at the time it was a fresh idea, something I think she saw in a store window.) Now there are online shops that sell strips of wool tartan "ribbon." This cozy wool texture could be really nice on a holiday package, whether contrasted with a metallic foil, soft tissue, or humble red craft paper.

Gwyneth in holiday plaid for Estee Lauder's very trad 2006 campaign.

The Scottish Weaver has an enormous selection of tartan ribbon.

Tartan: Romancing the Plaid, has been on my wish list for a few months (thanks to Coterie) but Domino's fun whirlwind tour through the history of plaid makes me want to nab a copy this week.

Above, that oft-posted, blurry but very cool shot of Mary McDonald wearing a glamorous tartan dress, flanked by her amazing bone pagodas.

Paper shown top is from Kate's Paperie, and the tags are available through Mrs. John L. Strong.


Chloe Warner

A new designer to love: Chloe Warner. Don't miss the lovely video of her flora-and-fauna filled home. (There's a beautiful feature in Domino's November issue too.)

You'll notice Warner mixes an Urban Outfitters headboard with an abundance of Clarence House's "Flowering Quince," used for curtains and pillows.


DBD 2007 Wrap-Up

This will sound like I'm fawning over Margaret Russell, but if I'm being honest I have to say her tent and tables were my favorite at Dining By Design 2007. It's a very subjective reaction -- I'm a big fan of those Isnik-inspired fabrics from Mehmet and Dimonah Iskel. And I think Paul Ludick's contemporary blue metal tables keep the vignette fresh. If I were throwing a big budget bash, Russell's Moroccan fantasy is something I would love to duplicate.

Below, I thought you might be interested in seeing the Iskel's Paris kitchen from Elle Decor, December 2006.

BTW: DBD heads to Chicago November 1-3.

Elle Decor photo by Simon Upton


Dining By Design II

Bold stripes and eclectic chairs from Carol Helms for Benjamin Moore.

The table below needs no explanation.

Above, modern Bacchanalia reference in a setting by Marc Blackwell for Rosemount Estate.

Bernat Creative was ultra-femme. Unfortunately my photos don't do justice to the ruffled tablecloth. Below, something a bit more masculine and Asian-inspired from Bob Brown for Delta Airlines.

Above, Steve Bales for Atlantan Bride Magazine.

Sorry the images above are so dim. Design by Laslie-Williams Interiors.

Lovely ottomans and wicker chairs used by Chris Casey and Douglas Weiss.

Smart Glass used a dramatic link-style chandelier.

Below, Novare Group went with sleek and elegant.

Susan B. Bozeman's natural charm.

Below, Expo Design Center drama.

Loren Audrey Taylor created glamour for Atlanta Classic Cars, below.

Chip Cheatham for Pierce Martin beautifully handled the challenge of designing the AIDS Memorial Table. Those of us who've lost a loved one to AIDS signed the placemats.

There were so many more amazing tables that I didn't capture with my camera, but I hope this gives you a sense of all the hard work that goes into this annual happening. To learn more, visit Dining By Design.

Appreciate the details by clicking pictures to enlarge.