Photo courtesy of Traditional Home/Francesco Lagnese
Suysel dePedro Cunningham and Anne Maxwell sit in Suysel's bedroom, recently featured in the February issue of Traditional Home.
Taking inspiration from their frequent travels, friends and family, the duo capture an upbeat sensibility in their exuberant designs. I feel so lucky to have gotten to know these outstanding women whose energy and enthusiasm light up any room they enter.
Photos courtesy of Duralee
Their ad to launch the collection features the detailed leafy floral, Cecilia
Naming fabrics after family, pets, favorite destinations and design industry friends, the design duo of Tilton Fenwick recently debuted their colorful line of textiles withDuralee. Captivating and colorful, their prints have an old school sensibility, call it early-Pierre Deux-and-Pierre Frey-meets-Porthault. These "Curators of Chic" ( a tag line they named their blog), hung out their designer shingle in 2010, naming their firm after the dorms they lived in at Boston College and Tufts, adding to the throwback charm of their stylish sensibility. Their innate color sense and pattern mixing confidence comes from working for color masters. Anne Maxwell worked for the charming traditionalist Ashley Whittaker and classically-minded Brockschmidt and Coleman; Suysel dePedro Cunningham for the elegantly sublime designer Markham Roberts. Being tapped as one of the top 20 New Trads by Trad Home/Lonny Magazine in 2011 helped get them noticed. That same year they received the IFDA Rising Star award.
If you think it is unusual for a design firm to get a fabric collection after being in business for a little over three years, you'd be right. It is an incredibly honor to get the chance to design an entire fabric collection for a major fabric house, no matter how seasoned the firm. Yet the energetic designing women did not disappoint-- their collection is filled with incredibly detailed prints, knock out color pairings and a sensational artistic flair.
Photo courtesy of Tilton Fenwick
Their green and blue interior at the Hampton Designer Showhouse in 2011 put their young traditional style and talent on a bigger stage. Known for their love of original color combinations, their playful custom upholstery details make their interiors truly one of a kind.
Photos by Trevor Tondo/NY Times courtesy of Tilton Fenwick
Devotees of social medial, the gals have done everything right to connect with the design community, as well as drive a design dialog through twitter, Facebook and real life interactions. Supporting charities like DIFFA's Dining by Design, Housing Works Design on a Dime, andThe Ronald McDonald House, they got involved early on and remain actively involved, attending industry events and lectures that support their fellow designers. Last February, their talents were captured by a major newspaper- giving them an even larger following than they could have ever hoped for, when Foster's gut-renovated Brooklyn home was featured in the New York Times. Her living room features a bright melange of gray blue and pink with touches of black and gold.
Photo courtesy of Patrick Cline
A cozy bedroom designed by the duo in Cunningham's upstate New York home. You might notice the walls in their peacock motif.
Photo courtesy of Traditional Home/Francesco Lagnese
Showing how to engage with their vibrant mix of scale and pattern, Cunningham's New York City apartment bedroom is done up in a wonderful melange of their prints, recently seen in Traditional Home and on her Instagram at @TiltonFenwick. It shows how prints and patterns can be mixed to create something totally fresh and unique.
One of the first things Tilton Fenwick did before launching their firm was come up with a logo that spoke to their brand and was personal to them. Created by artist Victoria Molinelli, their two-toned watercolor rendering of a peacock is a signature moment with playful appeal.
Chilvers in Mint and Red is a wild and exotic garden scene
Gibbie in Coral. J'adore this all-over climbing floral in soft colors paired with blues
From top: Olsen, Paboreal and Tally in the coral color story
Cecilia in Coral
The Prussian and Spruce color story with Geniesse, Lenox, Scout and Cecilia
Sissy, one of my favorite prints, in Cactus. I'm already eyeing the coral and teal color way for pillows to go on my teal velvet sofa
Eze Stripe, Cecilia and Parboreal, named after their company logo, a circular Peacock
Jax, Rocat and Paullu
Rocat in Multi can be used in a multitude of creative applications
My namesake! Maris, an oversized radiant paisley
Maris in Currant
Jax, a playful all-over print in Bordeaux
Geniesse, a ditzy floral stripe in Sea
Maine in Mint and Red
Miraval, named after the duo's favorite spa, in Coral
Soskin, an animal-inspired spot print of cut and uncut velvet. The color palette fills a need in the market with its appealing off color combos.
Photos courtesy of Alessandra Branca
Have you visited Bergdorf Goodman's home floor recently? It has been transformed by Alessandra Branca into a Cabinet des Curiosite, with objects of wonder set against a striking backdrop of red, white and black. Showcasing a mix of bespoke hand-crafted accessories, antiques, decorative objects and tabletop, the space, with walls covered in her new Schumacher collection textiles, is like stepping back in time to a fantastical chic European shop. Designed with residential appeal, every surface holds something compelling to look at, and it is all available to buy. Big on pairing artisan, hand-made and quality elements, Branca finds inspiration in the past and repurposes it to create an entirely new, updated sensibility. The curious can visit the treasure trove where the mix of Old World and ornate will live till the end of the month. If you are interested in these stylish finds, visit Branca. where the story continues.
In a dramatic turn, her coral embroidered Schumacher Coralina pattern is upholstered on walls piped in black. An antique Louis XV bergere covered in her black and white diamond woven adds contrast. Check out the kooky genius needlepoint Stags Head above. He provides an unexpected take on the taxidermy craze.
A shot of black in a space adds an important element of the dramatic. Here, a to die for antique Jansen desk with a leather top and gilt detailing.
French antique glass domes hold specially created porcelain flowers, and antique seals are framed and mounted in a black shadowbox. Accessories that incorporate a bit of history show personality and an appreciation for the past.
Game tables are THE thing to have. A 1950's hand-painted black lacquer folding games table with gold detailing is from the same artist that created Coco Chanel's furniture. White painted Louis XVI chairs are upholstered in the zippy Branca red and white stripe from her Schumacher line.
An antique table set for a woodlands-themed dinner features Branca's new faux Bois Bosco tabletop pattern. A skinny gold banding elevates the porcelain, making it a bit dressier. Call it lodge luxe.
I am surprised this faux bois covered chair is still there- it would suit a rustic- chic man cave aesthetic perfectly.
A specially printed colorful faux bois upholstered on walls is a textural backdrop for a Victorian bobbin leg chair covered in her Schumacher red and black tartan.
My favorite moment- a toile-covered niche, a Louis XV circa 1750 sofa with a serpentine back covered in red velvet and standing lamps with marbleized shades. Wow, that is striking and totally makes a large-scale neo traditional toile au currant.
Last time I zipped through, I think this bench had been sold. Covered in custom red, black and white marble-printed leather, it was pretty amazing.
After visiting her Designer Visions Showhouse space for Elle Decor today, I saw Branca's love of stripes executed in a really innovative, space-creating application. Here, stripes on an armchair are punched up a notch with the inclusion of a red wall.
More large-scale marbleizing, this time on a lacquered tray that holds her stag-etched stemware and embroidered cocktail napkins. Fall is the perfect time for a Hunt Party, and this would add sophistication to the festivities.
A dark brown grained wood faux bois fabric brings an equine element to a lifesize needlepoint horse mounted on the wall. A Branca velvet chair and ottoman spice up the area with some red.
I love when people start their own companies based on that which they are most passionate about. Bramalta, a new Italian-inspired printed fabric collection out of Pennsylvania started by John Donis, came from years of working in and loving the fabric industry. It is so exciting seeing boutique fabric companies get started, and see their creative point of view emerge. Starting Bramalta, Donis was able to re-connect with the creative process. He used to create custom fabrics for clients while working at Scalamandre, which is where we met way back when. After many years there, he learned the art and process of the weaving mills and appreciated their vast, treasured historical archives. Venturing out on his own, he had total creative flexibility to bring something new to market with a nod to the past and his Italian roots.
When describing the leap he took, he explained, "textiles and making things, practical things which have personal meaning are important to me. I had the Bramalta designs in mind, and I do all the drawing and coloring myself. I kept searching until I found the best people to work with. Then, I had to teach myself how to design a textile and just be an editor." A love of textiles and historical archives stemmed from Donis's Italian heritage, travels and inspirational grandmother. As a child, he would join her on fabric and lace buying trips in the Puglia region, famous for its wool, where his appreciation for the textile arts began. The creative process takes time, having created over 10,000 sketches and ideas for designs, he acknowledges the execution of a pattern is complex and varied.
What appeals to me are his vivid color combinations and playful patterns like the flamestitch, for their updated historical reference points. You can find the prints at Travis and Co in Atlanta, and if you are interested in carrying the Bramalta Collection, reach out to them here.
Zig Zag in Aqua is inspired by a classic Egg and Dart motif
Zig Zag in Fuschia
Zig Zag in Orange
Zig Zag in Red
Zig Zag in Yellow
Zig Zag in Blue
Rosette and Fret in Green
Rosette and Fret in Red
Arts and Crafts in Blue
Arts and Crafts in Red
Boccanera in Aqua and Green
Kerman in Blues
Fiamma in Green
Fiamma in Blue