Friday, December 28, 2012

Decorator Scrapbook, Happy 2013!

This year absolutely flew by.  Looking forward to beginning a new year!  I feel like the real meaning of Christmas is pretty basic; family and friends.  That's it!  I received a copy of the new book "Ann Getty Interior Style" by Diane Dorrans Saeks (Rizzoli) and am really enjoying it.  Did you know that when Ann Getty travels, she takes the "Jetty" - her private 747...I just love that bit of trivia.  Her sense of design is truly scholarly, certainly exotic, and bedizened- (an interesting little known word, that means excessively ornate and highly decorated).  I find it, and her, truly inspiring.

Dining Room by Ann Getty Associates, San Francisco
Thanks to Ms. Saeks, we get to take a grand tour through the Ali babas cave of treasures collected by Ann Getty, a lady who admits to being terrified of Sister Parish, who helped her back in the 1970's- and that she "uses every inch" of her house.

Sitting Room, Dean Farris Interior Design, Naples

Here, I used some faux topiaries to great effect, and used items I already owned to create a semblance of the elegance that decorators long for.  We are so often like the shoemakers children, with no shoes of our own!  I'm sure that Ann Getty would love this chamber from the time of Marie Antoinette, as well as this beautiful garden room from the New York apartment of decorator Susan Gutfreund. (below)

Marie Antoinette's boudoir, Versailles

Garden Room, Susan Gutfreund, New York

 And here, (below) I used some existing furnishings in a Naples condo, and a Charleston townhouse- in the mood of luxury and elegance that we all long for, enriching our daily lives with that certain "je ne c'est quois" (please pardon my broken franglais!)

Living Room, Dean Farris Interior Design, Naples

Parlour, Dean Farris Interior Design, Charleston

Don't you agree that we all need some beauty, peace, and tranquility in our hectic lives?
I wish for you, dear readers, a new year of Peace, Love, and Spiritual and Worldly Beauty!

Here I am in Paris, Right Bank, 2007


Saturday, December 15, 2012

Room of the Week, Mary McDonald

I like this room very much, by the California designer, Mary McDonald, and so, I thought I'd give her a gift, since she's one of my favorite stars of the new reality show, called Million Dollar Decorators- I feel as if I know Mary, and I love her look, and her personality too. 

From Mary McDonald Interiors, The Allure of Style, courtesy of Rizzoli
  I never knew that Mary went to Parsons, and had a career as a milliner! I'd love to see her in a hat, with a big brim, and a long satin ribbon...I'm sure she could pull that look off with aplomb!  There was a profile of Mary on first dibs, and it sparked my interest in this talented and very charming lady decorator.  Perhaps when I'm in L.A. I'll seek her out!  Stay tuned for more on darling Mary McDonald.  DF *****

Friday, December 14, 2012

Rigaud Candles - Tres' Chic!

If you have someone truly special on your gift list this year, such as a decorator, or a person with a very high taste level, you may want to consider Rigaud.  Did you know that Jacqueline Kennedy used to burn the Rigaud candles in the White House? 

No doubt, Mrs. Kennedy preferred the original scent, first created in the late 1950's, by Mario Rigaud, called "Cypres'"  Maison Rigaud calls it "aromatic" - and interestingly to the design blog world, and others, in 1957, Mr. Rigaud created a perfume called "Eve Reve" which the famous tastemaker, Louise de Vilmorin called "the fragrance of paradise"... 

Jean-Baptiste Rigaud first arrived in Paris, in 1852.  In 1899, his widow, the Veuve Rigaud, took over the company he founded, followed by their son, Henri, in 1906.  In 1910 the house of Rigaud opened at the fashionable address of Rue de la Paix.  Later, around 1950, the first candle was developed, by Henri's son, Mario, and his wife Vivienne...  the products come to you in the most chic, beautiful, and classic packaging, which is a box printed in a black and white zebra motif, each candle then wrapped in a red tissue paper, and the glass container is wrapped with a small red satin bow, similar to the ones Tiffany uses at Christmas time.  I always think of the decorator showhouse, Kips Bay, in New York - all the decorators in the 1980's were burning the Rigaud candles like mad! 

I just this evening purchased two of the travel size, (30 hours of burn) from Gattle's here in Naples, a linen shop that is celebrating 100 years of business in Florida.  My friend there, Mary, had them ready for me when I arrived, and when I left, the faux snow was falling in big fluffy flakes everywhere!  (an annual holiday treat, it "snows" on Third Street South, thanks to machines which make a kind of snow, very charming!)  While the snow may not be "vrai" the candles certainly are, and they are the epitome of what I call an authentic classic.  Buy now at a shop near you!  DF *****   

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Gaston y Daniela Lisboa Collection

I've always been drawn to the textiles created by Gaston y Daniela, for Brunschwig and Fils, now owned by Cary Kravet.  Here's the new "Lisboa"  collection - love the azulejos tiles in the background. 

Lisboa, by Brunschwig et Fils

We had used "Guatemala Cotton" by Gaston y Daniela, a few years ago at the Mini residence, here in Naples.  Here's a shot of the bed, we also used it for the draperies in that room...

Dean Farris Interior Design

I still love using printed materials, even though they are not as fashionable as they once were- (the 80's) and the charm and colour they bring to a space.  We used these cranberry and sage tones, as the client wanted to retain the look and feel of their former home in Aurora, Illinois.  Merry Christmas, and happy holidays!  DF*****

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Progress at the Showroom!

We finally received our new Azul sofas, and our new Hollywood bed for the showroom! Come in and see the exciting new collections.  9118 Strada Place, Suite 8130 Mercato, Naples, Florida Tel (239) 249-6800  Exclusive Beverly Hills lifestyle furnishings and complete interior design and remodeling services. (Interiors by Design West, Inc.) 

Hollywood Bed, at Kreiss Naples
We still have some refining to do, and need to have our Christmas tree delivered- but we all had a blast watching the new things get installed today.

Medici Bed, Aria desk, Gatsby chair
Here's our classic Medici Bed, with Legacy Linens (through Interiors by Design West) we used a Phillip Jeffries damask pattern on a textured weave behind the bed.  Alexis Barrett, one of our lead designers, has been instrumental in creating the look of the showroom.

Azul sofas and tables, Kreiss Collection, Naples

Here's a sneak peek of our new Azul  sofa grouping, stay tuned for more finished images of the Azul, coming soon to a screen near you!  DF ***** 

Monday, December 3, 2012

Decorator Inspirations

It's the holiday season, once again!  I know you've missed me, I've been so terribly busy with all of my clients, getting ready for the high season here in sunny Naples...I think what inspires me the most is defined by one word: authenticity.  I've been in so many mind blowingly beautiful homes lately, by architects such as Jeff Harrell, and builders such as BCB- and yesterday William (Billy) and I were in the Art Canada house, on Third Street South, that I helped to furnish, along with Brenda Canada.  Celine Godof was showing it, as it's listed for sale, and I was delighted to see that all 35 pieces of the Althorp collection I had placed in the house were still there, "in situ".  So many pieces of "Althorp Living History Collection"went to that house, that I received a letter of thanks from none other than Earl Spencer, the brother of the late Princess Diana...!  For a virtual tour, courtesy of Celine and Premier-Sotheby's go to 

Gloria Laura Vanderbilt
 And of course, I'm always fantasizing about, and inspired by, the eternally beautiful, elegant Gloria!  Here's a current picture of her- can you guess her age?  You'll never guess- not 39, not 49, not's 88 years young!  How elegant and fabulous, totally awesome is she? I can't think of anyone more inspiring, and more beautiful.  Lucky Anderson Cooper, he gets to call her "Mummy" ! How divine would that be?  I can only imagine- of course, my own mother, Dottie, is pretty special too... (see earlier posts).  As one of my late decorating mentors, Robert Metzger, once said, we all want a woman with a past, and a man with a future!

Sitting Room, Dean Farris Interior Design
Finally, I have to admit, I inspire myself!  I love my apartment, here in Napoli, and I just keep adding things- gifts, loaners, stuff I've dragged around for years, it never ceases to amaze me what Billy Baldwin was always talking about, the personal in decoration.  And like dear BB, I find the older I get, the less I need, and the more I know how to make less look and feel like more!  DF ***** 

Gloria Vanderbilt, 1970 Francesco Scavullo