Monday, December 20, 2010

Enid Haupt and Florence Broadhurst

Photo by Dean Farris (top)
Haupt Conservatory at N.Y. Botanical Garden

Sister Parish did the most beautiful job of decorating the New York apartment of philanthropist Enid Haupt. I so admire the use of sparse furnishings mixed with beautiful orchids in their greenhouse clay pots. Her curtains are of unlined taffeta, DIVINE! In my own room I was inspired by Sister and Mrs. Haupt to place a simple potted orchid on my table. AND, dear friend Mary has given me a beautiful Christmas present of a book about the Australian wallpaper designer, Florence Broadhurst, which I am, as usual, DEVOURING! I, in turn, gave Mary a book by Armistead Maupin called "MaryAnn in Autumn" which is his latest from the tales of the city series, and is so good you feel dirty after reading it! As Michael Taylor always said, "elegance is simplicity" (I paraphrase) and so you don't really have to have an aubusson rug on your polished wood floors, you can have, like Mrs. Haupt, no rug, and let the beauty of the glowing wood reflect light and create sheen in your room. I think this is all very well with a Douglas Fir christmas tree, the little italian white lights reflecting into the polished floor. Food for thought. Pauline de Rothschild in her Albany set had some animal hide rugs with a lot of wood showing, and it was the height of chic. Think subtraction to add style. Forget about your rules, go with your intuition and enjoy the feeling of abstraction and elegance. DF*****