THE SUBTLE SOPHISTICATION OF SHAGREEN

by Marisa Marcantonio

Shagreen, stingray and shark skin, known in French as Galuchat (everything sounds better in French, don't you agree?) after a French master craftsman who worked with the material,  is recognizable by its tell-tale circular pattern of calcified scales on the surface and slight sheen. You can find beautiful antique shagreen pieces, often Art Deco period,  in a pale green coloration. But more recently, shagreen, both faux and real have made a comeback as a surface material. The appeal lies in the textural interest and subtle luxurious look of the varied skin.  It can be found in a wide variety of colors, on large and small pieces, making it a wonderful accent to both modern and traditional interiors. 

Photo courtesy of Garrison Rousseau 

A plethora of pastel-hued shagreen telephone tables made by Garrison Rousseau crafted in the Philippines make me swoon.  His assortment of beautiful furniture covered in shagreen is endless.

Photo courtesy of Century 

A classic Gueridon table gets the glam treatment with an inlaid shagreen top at Century Furniture. Note the charming hoof feet.

Photo courtesy of Hickory Chair 

Mixing a rich Mahogany and Rosewood alongside a faux shagreen, Thomas O'Brien for Hickory Chair channels Art Deco simplicity of form in the Margaux Table.

Photo courtesy of Walker Zabriskie 

Clean lines and plinth simple design provide a minimalist style in Walker Zabriskie's shagreen coffee table

 Photo courtesy of Kemble Interiors 

Based on a vintage design, this curvilinear custom coffee table by Kemble Interiors

through Dering Hall is covered in pale pink shagreen with a lacquer overlay. it is a great option for larger spaces. 

Photo courtesy of Gabby 

Soft curves covered in charcoal faux-shagreen on Gabby's Sutton Coffee Table through Candelabra.

Photo courtesy of DwellStudio

A sexy round low cocktail table, The Milo from DwellStudio from Zinc Door, is topped with grey faux shagreen and sits on a triangle-shaped black iron base.

 Photo courtesy of Made Goods 

Streamlined and covered in ecru faux shagreen, the versatile Sorin Nightstand from Made Goods can work double-duty as a nightstand or small dresser. 

Photo courtesy of Regina Andrews

 The Prism Mirror by Regina Andrews through Zinc Door covers all the right angles with a Deco feel. I am crazy about this piece.

 Photo courtesy of Two's Company

I cannot get enough of these trinket trays from Two's Company. Each season they come up with new designs, and I especially like the faux shagreen pale hues they do. These come in handy on every table.

Photo courtesy of Monc 13

 Beautifully quilted pieces of purple shagreen are like a puzzle on De Nacre et D'Orient's stunning inlaid jewelry box from Monc 13. The purple is jazzy.

 Photo courtesy of AERIN 

Providing a luxe spot to store baubles, AERIN'S sky blue embossed shagreen jewelry box trimmed with gold has a pretty closure detail. It would make a special gift anyone serious about pretty storage.

KEEP A LOW PROFILE: COFFEE TABLES THAT CAUGHT MY ATTENTION AT 2013 SPRING HIGH POINT MARKET

by Marisa Marcantonio

Mission: coffee table. Finding THE perfect place to artfully create tablescapes that also fits the style of your living room requires a bit of a search. I scoured High Point, looking high and low for interesting coffee tables to suit a variety of interiors. Many of the new additions with a wide appeal stemmed off the classic Parsons table silhouette. Lucite, brass, raffia, faux finishes and metal add a bit of spark to seating areas that require a spot for a drink, your favorite books, flowers and a hurricane or two.

Based on covered vintage style, the Kemble Interiors for Henredon collection worked brass accents into many of their pieces. A bamboo textured frame supports a glass-topped square coffee table, great for large areas.

Lucite like this is swoon-worthy. Thick lucite column legs with brass end caps and trim on the neo-vintage coffee table from Kemble Interiors for Henredon was a showstopper.

A second shelf provides extra display capabilities in Arteriors elegant-legged hammered metal coffee table.

Worlds Away mixes materials on the Conrad, a lacquer and gold leaf coffee table with a modified Greek key metal base.

A clean classic shape, the waterfall table never fails in appeal, since it's chameleon-line ability allows it to suit many environments. This Raffia Cocktail Table from Pearson is covered in light raffia, which provides the addition of texture.

Another grass cloth-covered classic, this time from Century. Simple lines are enhanced with a curving decorative bracket that works its way around the piece. Aged brass ferrules ground the leg.

An L-shaped leg gives linear impact to Pearson's  ivory faux Shagreen Cocktail Table. The scale is just right.

Subtle painted gold detailing adds charm to Century's Alexa, a low, 2-tiered coffee table with removable tray top.

A stepped base influenced by a Chinese antique table, the Low Cocktail Table covered in vellum at Mr. and Mrs. Howard for Sherrill adds a neutral element.

Faux bois can tend to look heavy, but that isn't the case in Mr. Brown's new white painted metal coffee table. Intertwined branches have a lightness to them that is made modern by the white finish and a smoky mirror top.

The finish on this table is what makes it really wonderful. The Paris Cocktail Table from Mr. and Mrs. Howard for Sherrill in a swirly cream and brown dragged finish elevates it giving the surface interest.

Festoni also launched an acrylic coffee table. Mixing clear and black plastic, a splayed leg and low profile bring flair to seating areas.

Noir uses repurposed wood in this low, rustic light wood table with zig-zag base. It has heft to it that would look great in a modern barn setting.

Trimmed in white, Bernhardt's large rectangular Bexley Coffee Table has modern lines and graphic punch.

A curved leg reminiscent of classic Chinoiserie pieces on Bungalow 5's Higashi Coffee Table gives it a subtle sophistication. Brass accent cut-outs add a bit of sparkle.

Baker debuted a new traditional collection from Michael S. Smith at High Point. Richly carved details in the Peking Cocktail Table accompany a decorative Chinoiserie scenic on the top. True to the original antique it was based on, Baker has duplicated every intricate detail on the carved textural fretwork border that continues from the border to the leg.

Century's upholstered coffee table with tapered, curved leg and movable, raised center portion allows for a perch and a spot for a drink.

IN FLORIDA? JOIN ME AT DCOTA THIS THURSDAY FOR A SCHUMACHER PANEL WITH CELERIE KEMBLE

by Marisa Marcantonio

Photo courtesy of DCOTA
Being on panels, moderating panels, and listening to panels always leave me inspired.  The questions they answer, dialogue they spark and the camaraderie they engender are just fascinating. If you are in Florida this coming Thursday, November 15th, I hope you will come out to DCOTA in Dania, to hear a  panel I am moderating with PB/NYC designer Celerie Kemble and Schumacher's creative director, Susan North. We will be discussing The Influence of Fashion on Wallcovering Design and the recently-launched innovative wallcovering collection Kemble has created for the brand. The event, in Atrium C, begins at 10:45am and goes till 12pm, followed by a reception in the Schumacher Showroom. Then at 2pm, I am looking forward to introducing Charlotte Moss, whose newest book, her eighth title,  A Visual Life: Scrapbooking, Collages and Inspirations, reveals her extensive collages she has assembled over the years on inspired travel, fashion, color and more, which she has incorporated with the historical entertaining documents of stylish, inspiring women through time. After Moss shares her visual inspiration, join us at The Century Furniture Showroom where her Icons Collection is on view. Excited to see you there!