by Marisa Marcantonio

With the cold that has gripped most of the country recently, it is nice to look at summery home accessories to warm up with thoughts that summer days are not far off. I was able to do just that as I walked the isles of the New York Gift Show yesterday, where there were coastal chic nautical motifs, shell-encrusted pieces and warm weather entertaining accessories aplenty. 

I also noticed more than a fair amount of Chinoiserie. I feel like we JUST went through this trend, but it is back, and has been bubbling up for some time. It is here a major way, from painted cherry blossoms on ceramics, to ginger jars, pagodas, and more. I love the style, it is just incredible that it is back with such warp speed. Is this the way popular trends will surface, just hit the repeat button every few years? This may be the case. If people like it, evergreen themes sell well. Speaking of popular motifs,  I am also seeing a LOT of coral again. It just went away....or so I thought. So here are some of my favorite things that caught my eye and have style that (I hope) will endure.

I went a little bit crazy when I spotted these. JM Piers painted tole mini lanterns with bell detail votive candles are the perfect thing for outdoor entertaining.  They are available through Dalton Pratt in Washington DC.

 Add some Oomph to your dining room table or mantel with their brand new simple hurricanes. I love how the base resembles a puffy column base, while feeling fresh and classic.

I have been meaning to write about Holly Stuart Designs for ages. Her printed hard place mats and coasters are done in incredibly pretty prints that work well in so many interior settings. Incredibly durable and easy to gift, her printed coasters are now available in a set of 4, by color or pattern. Such an easy and elegant hostess or dinner party gift.

Plat du Jour, a line of cheery and practical paper mats came in great new patterns that included Chinoiserie, whales and schools of fish.

 Chinoiserie looks fresh and new on this Dransfield and Ross pillow with Chinese blue and white plates and vase cut-outs.

Kim Seybert knocked it out of the park this show, with a ton of slew of  Chinoiserie and coral motifs.  The Pagoda embroidered cocktail and canape napkins with dragon boat and pagodas surrounded by a fanciful colored border in a set of 6 had me at hello.

Lest we forget the darling elephant chain being shaded by an umbrella with a punchy orange scallop edge.

 Or the multi colored seersucker with bright contrast edging and tropical motifs, sold in a set of 6.

 More Chinoiserie! Kim Seybert did a punchy blue and white pagoda toile pattern in melamine, complete with a matching picnic basket. Now you will be ready for Central Park or Ascot.

 Zoe Bios Creative continues their winning streak with artwork that combines individual style and beautiful abstract watercolors  and photography.

I adore the decorative painter Harrison Howard, so happy to see his Chinoiserie designs at Dean Rhys Morgan Works on Paper booth.

Jonathan Adler killed it with mixed materials this show. Brass! Inlaid shells! Lucite! This articulated turtle has my name on it for my menagerie collection. Good thing Mr. Adler was on hand to show me the plethora of newness with, as always,  such wonderful unbridled enthusiasm.

Scalloped brass tables with shell inlay are super sexy glam from Jonathan Adler.

What! Coffee tables, side tables and more in lucite with brass corners also at Jonathan Adler. I kinda want everything. Just like vintage, but fresh and new.

There speckled colorful painted cubes from Jonathan Adler in punchy colors remind me of the work of a decorative painter without the customization and wait time.

Emporium Home launched a bevy of great new things. This stacked glass and metal Luck Be a Lady lamp was spot on with a vintage vibe.

It's here! John Robshaw has teamed up with environment friendly Cisco Brothers Furniture for a line of pieces. This little tufted number leads the collection.

Adding to their upholstery ensemble, Oomph's charming linear X- Bench with painted wood leg and small arm is a winner for small locations that need a perch.

With cut corners and classic lines, Bungalow 5's new Jardin kelly green bamboo chair is as good as it gets for all you vintage classic reboot fans.

Circular details, round lucite knobs and a cut out base add special touches to Bungalow 5's Savoy three-drawer white dresser that is calling out for a tropical home.

With green penshell overlay, Made Goods simple Parsons style table has an added elegance to it.


by Marisa Marcantonio

Easter is upon us! In planning your Easter table, fresh flowers, pretty china and colorful mats and a tablecloth make the occasion festive.

The Easter bunny is on the run! You can catch him at John Derian.

Plaza Florists on Lexington Avenue in the 60's has been one of my longtime favorite sources. Connie Plaissay opened the the shop in 1995, as a city oasis. The transporting space carries hundreds of hand selected blooms that fill the air with a gorgeous green aroma. Walking by their stunningly beautiful windows, they showcase high style yet soft arrangements, blooming branches, tropical rarities and unique vignettes with natural materials. From a rustic container of long stemmed tulips to a monochromatic melange of seasonal blooms, they can do it all. Their tell tale green ribbon and Plaza tag announce the arrival of a breathtaking flora package.

Hydrangeas in a purple and green arrangement.

Creams and greens.

Pale yellows are soft and sweet.

When thinking about the Easter table for brunch, try adding some china with blooms:

French designer Alberto Pinto recently launched Jardins D'Orchidees hand painted Limoges porcelain, available at Michael C. Fina.

Meissen's Persian Rose porcelain in fabulous red and turquoise. They are the creme de la creme.

If you have not yet added bamboo flatware to your repertoire, I highly recommend it. It works from season to season, acts as a neutral and matches everything. This set has more of an aged look and comes from Horchow.

If you are inspired by the classic Easter jelly bean brights, these Dransfield & Ross Moorish shaped mats work well.

These D. Porthault cocktail napkins are great to have on hand when 5 pm comes around. They add a bright punch to the bar and canapes are tastier when using these. Get all one pattern or mix them up. They get softer with age, and I am ready to snag my mom's after coveting them for forever!

D. Porthault's Dahlia pattern is embroidered on a white linen. The bold blooms seem to blow in the wind, suspended.

D. Porthault has been bringing flowers into the home for generations. The Lilas in blue hand embroidered linen mats and napkins have a realistic look.

The Fougeres pattern of ferns has a delicate air and sweet charm.

For something more casual D and R's Holiday Tropical cotton napkin. It reminds me of a vivid 1960's Scandinavian Josef Frank print.

I will be setting the table with these classic and last-forever Kim Seybert silk organza napkins. They are cut on the bias so they have this adorable lettuce edging. With so many lush colors to choose from, you can get a set for each china pattern's color palette.

Deal Alert! World Market does it again-- these floral Sakira mats with a striped border are a steal. The way to get the look for less.

Sakira Spring Floral napkins will become your everyday faves. Also from WM.

The Tree of Life placemats also from World Market combines an age old motif, reminiscent of a classic Brunschwig and Fils chintz's.

Buy some bunches and begin arranging!

Since you want the flowers to be the star players, a white vase is a good idea as it will not overwhelm. Handmade and unique pottery pieces from Connecticut- based artist Frances Palmer add an artisan element. Her Dahlia vase with small flowers in relief applied to a fluted body has just enough detail.

Tulips are a real harbinger of spring-- the more the better!