by Marisa Marcantonio

By the way, have you seen the newly updated Architectural Digest website? I spent some time on it this past weekend, and I have to say, I really like the clean layout, the streamlined font, round-up lists, and in-depth European coverage. And thank you AD for adding Stylebeat to The Daily AD blog roll! While hunting, I came across this:

 Photos courtesy of Architectural Digest

And what a chic world it is. In her pastoral home that she shares with her husband, built in 1939 by Joseph H. Cassone in one of the prettiest areas of rural Pennsylvania, dealer Liz O'Brien escapes New York. The "Streamline Moderne" modernist architecture and interiors, as seen in the October issue of Architectural Digest are so fitting for O'Brien, author and long-time leading voice in vintage furnishings, decorative accessories and all-around chicness. She is the reason for the comeback, appreciation and devout following of some of the biggest 20th Century furniture designers across Europe and the US. Her laser-like vision picked diamonds in the rough twenty years ago, and her dedication to discovering the best has never wavered. Even her own line of furnishings, Editions is to die for. It is great to see what she chooses to surround herself with, and what styles she wants around. I know she loves color, because the seating area of her gallery is a vibrant display, with a purple on purple faux bois Madeline Castiang rug with deep purple felt walls punctuated by stark white bookcases. But her house is grounded in sweeping neutral schemes. What a spot to come home to.

 Modernist perfection with an orange door

 The floor length  gray drapes with caterpillar-like mole fringe around the softly curving window are out of a movie set. So is that view.

 A white living room, punctuated by touches of red and leopard.

A high drama bedroom with a painting depicting a sweeping Chinese mountain view.

The rich lacquer nighstands are just the thing to off-set the neutral backdrop.


The statuesque silhouettes of the minimal Albert Hadley etagere and John Dickinson plaster x-bench against this multi-paned window are magnified.

The fluting and lines of her kitchen remind me of the older, pre-renovation areas of The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Every piece speaks for itself. The Queen Anne chair she designed for her Editions collections sits tucked behind her glass-topped leggy desk.

The view from the pool shot during magic hour.

Photo by Kevin Sharkey, Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia

In the back of her gallery space where the work gets done, she has created a chic cocoon of color.


by Marisa Marcantonio

If you didn't make it to Paris for Maison Objet, with a side trip to the famed La Marche Aux Puces flea market in Clignancourt, you are in luck, because it has come to you.  Barneys New York is saving you the price of a plane ticket, and the cost of shipping a container home. After mining through hundreds of decorative objects and antiques, Dennis Freedman, creative director of Barneys New York, cherry-picked his favorites to bring back to New York. Three stalls have been set up in Chelsea Passage on the 9th floor of the store, filled with unusual original pieces, ranging from a mod orange 60's chair to architectural salvage to funky metal sculptures from the 1930's. The range of styles, priced from $200 to $5000, makes the assortment worth seeing, since once its gone it's gone baby gone.  It will be there till mid-November, vite!

Photos courtesy of Tom Sibley

One of the three dramatically lit stalls

It's all in the mix

Need an arched window from a cathedral?

There is a bit of everything

The metal bird is fabulous

It's fun to see the diversity of materials

Displayed gallery style, you don't have to fight the pushy crowds here


by Marisa Marcantonio

The James Sansum Gallery is located in a pretty space above Bar and Books on Lex.

Started in 2002, James Sansum Fine and Decorative Art gallery, located at 1020 Lexington Avenue, on the 2nd Floor has a stunning, well- edited collection of American and European furniture and decorative objects, Asian works of art and Old Master drawings. In addition, they mount rotating shows of contemporary art, featuring established talents and up and comers. James Sansum has been in the industry for ages, as a fine art and antiques dealer. After attending Harvard, he decided to go headlong into the world of art history academe-- and got his Masters of Arts degree in the History of Decorative Arts and Design from Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum and Parsons School of Design. His expertise has let him to curate several exhibitions on European boxes, textiles, and works on paper. Over the years he has collected a mix of unique decorative things for his shop, and visiting him there is like stepping into a jewel box. He recently started a website, James Sansum, a visual treat where you can read the storied provenances of the pieces he offers. James shares his upstairs space with the incredibly talented Mark Hampton alum, designer Markham Roberts, his partner. And let's not forget their resident mascot, Poodle Choppy.

An Urn lamp sits on a table with marble inlay.

A serene vignette shows a tray filled with horn and bone boxes.

Symmetry is the key to a visually arresting tablescape, as invented and perfected by the late David Hicks.

More precious objects,the cobalt blue of the lamp is a nice pop of color.

Photos Courtesy of James Sansum
Pair of Stylized Flowers in Baskets
Made by Tiffany & Company in Mexico for the American market, circa 1950-1960
Gilded silver with crushed crystal
H: 4 1/4 D: 2 5/8 inches
Provenance: Polly Stover Kahn (Otto Kahn's daughter in law), Old Brookville, NY
I am a pushover for flowers and tiy baskets---

Active in Canton or Macao, China in the early nineteenth century, made for the European market
Brown Crab and Insect
Circa 1810-1815
Gouache and watercolor on paper
12 1/4 x 14 inches (framed)
Provenance: with Eyre & Hobhouse, London
Exhibited: Eyre & Hobhouse, Closely Observed Animals, 1982, number 90.

Louis XVI Style Low Side Chair (Chauffeuse)
Paris, France, circa 1920-1930
Made by Maison Jansen
Painted and parcel gilded wood
H: 33 W: 19 1/2 D: 18 inches
This small neoclassical style chauffeuse in the Louis XVI taste was made by Maison Jansen in their Parisian workrooms. Maison Jansen was a Paris-based interior decoration office founded in 1880 by Dutch-born Jean-Henri Jansen. Jansen is considered the first truly global design firm, serving clients in Europe, Latin America, North America and the Middle East. Stéphane Boudin was president of Jansen from 1936 to 1961, and oversaw the firm's most important design projects.

Photos Courtesy of James Sansum
Napoleon III Period Side Table
France, circa 1860-1870
Parcel gilded and painted metal (tôle peinte) and wrought iron with mirrored glass top
H: 22 3/4 W: 13 3/4 D: 13 3/4 inches