Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Interior gardens

Long stretches of cold weather like we're having help me realize why people have decorated the interiors of their homes with flower images for centuries: reminders of warmer weather! This exuberant wallpaper panel is all you need: I feel warmer already! It is paired with 18th century painted furniture which bears more of the same fruit. Hopefully this will help warm you!
photograph taken at the Louvre's Musee des Arts Decoratifs, 18th century floor, click to view in detail.

Monday, January 11, 2010

A very Vervoordt stair

In the heart of Antwerp lies a 16th century warehouse which now bears the Vervoordt stamp. Not Axel, but his son Boris.
The former coffee warehouse, from 1577, was one of many in Antwerp owned by the family. In 1995 Boris moved in and slowly took over, floor by floor, turning it into his private home. A feature which most caught my eye, the staircase from a 1970s renovation, is a pre-cast concrete structure with chunky wood treads seen in the top photo and through the dining room above. While I don't think the staircase would meet code here in the US, I would be tempted to try. This is a seriously sexy stair.
Boris, while having his own eye, is still very much his father's son: see his living room above. Time worn finishes, oversize sofas, natural linens, rough wood and honed stone: all similar to a space by his father, Axel, but with a new twist. I hope to see much more of Boris in the future and that staircase is just a divine inspiration!
photographs by Andreas Von Einsiedel for British House & Garden, January 2010