Thursday, March 31, 2016


R. Higgins Interiors, via Traditional Home

Lately, I've been thinking about early inspirations, and this image reminded me of an old acquaintance, the designer Joan Gnasco, who was the sister of my old friend Gail Dewar.  Joan's small house inspired me, with its taupe walls and lemon yellow sofa, placed in the large window, facing a fireplace.  Her house always smelled deliciously of fresh lemon and fresh paint.  It was a house that was loved.

I was also inspired by a shop in town called John Simmons, aka The Shop of John was a home furnishings boutique, and had so many fun things, and it too always had a wonderful fragrance in the air.  I remember they always had copies of Architectural Digest you could buy there.  This was way back in the early 1970's...

Roger Higgins and Ann Shipp, who own the house shown above, love their deep taupe walls with their stunning chartreuse "tabloid" curtains, a style often favored by the late decorator, Mark Hampton.  The chartreuse color reminds me so much of the curtains Tice Alexander had chosen for his New York flat when I was living and working with him at the time.  Tice had been an assistant to the late Albert Hadley, who came to New York originally from Nashville!  I believe that John Simmons was also from Tennessee, and he was known for giving lavish parties.  All of these designers inspire me and bring back fond memories.  Enjoy!  DF *****
(check out the R. Higgins site here )

*image via Traditional Home

* * * * *

Friday, March 25, 2016


Charleston, Carolyne Roehm (brick pavers)

Watermill, Tom Britt (pea gravel)

Atlanta, (asphalt)

No doubt, some of my favorite gardens and landscapes use pea gravel , which comes in all kinds of colors and stones... the thicker the application the more I like it!  Is it a bit of trouble?  Perhaps, but consider how much more aesthetic this Atlanta groundscape would be with a beige pea gravel drive...the gravel would blend so beautifully with the stucco on the house. 
My second choice would be a brick paver in a herringbone pattern, as the designer Carolyne Roehm used in her Charleston garden.  Love the sound of the crunch or the texture, of gravel or brick!  Enjoy!  DF *****
From the garden at Folie du Lac Martin, home of Robert Smith, Breau Bridge, LA

* * * * *

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Miles of Ikat, Schumacher

Miles Redd for F. Schumacher, available through MP Interiors, Estero, FL
Loving these cool blues for Spring 2016!
Here, I had used a similar blue ikat in the rug I chose for my own living room, which I still like very much.  (Tracey Porter for Feizy Rugs) DF ***** 

* * * * *

Monday, March 14, 2016

Ready for the Beach? New Book benefits the Naples Historical Society

Available through MP Interiors (239) 498-9074
Robert and Carole Leher did a fantastic job of researching and photographing some of the iconic estates along the Gulf of México, here in sunny Naples...proceeds from sales benefit the Naples Historical Society...

Former Swanson estate, Naples
You may recall I had posted about this house (above) which is included in the new book.  I sent a copy of the book to old friend Thomas Britt, since he had decorated the Swanson house...

From Naples Beach Homes
Artist Paul Arsenault was commissioned to render beautiful images, one of which was used on the cover of the book.  Enjoy!  DF *****

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Black, Navy, or Royal? Client's Choice

via Cote de Texas
Recently, I had consulted on a Mediterra Country Club project, and had suggested a very dark navy (paint) for the Master Bedroom walls.  However, my young client, David, preferred something much brighter, a strong, intense royal blue...
via Cote de Texas
While black walls may seem a bit much for most people, I found this (black) room exciting and dramatic, and my original proposal for the dark navy would have achieved a similar result.  Food for thought.  DF *****

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Vintage Tom Britt !

Thomas B. Britt (via Arts by Karena)
Exciting news!  Tom Britt, my one time mentor, and forever friend, is coming out with a monograph on his life's' work, the creation of the most amazing, high style rooms ever.  Mitch Owens will work on this project, in conjunction with Rizzoli ~ !  DF *****

* * * * * 

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Pool Time, Naples

 image via Facebook
They say one picture is worth a thousand words...DF *****

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Victorian Revival, Dean Farris Interior Design

Dean Farris Interior Design (c) 2016
The Victorians were into maximalism, and they loved to have something they called a "cozy corner" ~ a decorative conceit where they could lounge a la turque in high style, perhaps smoking a pipe or sipping some, Billy and I had fun one day creating our own cozy corner, and it gave our guests a lot of pleasure.  Enjoy!  DF *****

* * * * * *
John Singer Sargent