by Marisa Marcantonio

Some artists design such magical furnishings it is amazing they don't just go straight into a museum to be appreciated by millions. This is the case with an artist exhibition at Michael S. Smith's LA gallery. With craftsmanship and mastery of materials similar to that of iconic French designers Jean Royere and Pierre Chareau, artist Christopher Come forges a new path. Currently on display at Michael S. Smith's furniture gallery, Duke & Duke, in association with Cristina Grajales, the show reveals his exquisite glass and iron creations.
Smith, along with collaborator Maya McLaughlin, has created a haven for showcasing fantastical creations from European and American artistic furniture makers. Just think, you don't have to use your passport to appreciate these luxuries. Come's designs have a unique lightness and airiness to them, which is difficult to achieve when working in metal and glass. Strong linear patterns that form graphic repeats have a mesmerizing quality to them. Much in the same way Herve Van Der Straeten transforms metal, Come elevates it to a totally new, elegant place. These museum - quality pieces are alluring and visually arresting, so stop by and check them out when in LA at 8527 Melrose Avenue.

Photos courtesy of Christopher Come and Duke and Duke Gallery

Oblique Screen, 2003 in iron and glass

Round Coffee Table in iron, rock crystal and glass

Bench 2007 with a velvet seat and varied circles

Mirror, 2007 in brushed hand hammered iron and glass with silver leaf is a showstopper

Fire Tools, 2007 can go modern or minimal

Firescreen in iron and glass has a fabulous dynamic quality


by Marisa Marcantonio

I finally got the chance to visit Michael Smith's new (ish) LA Showroom, Jasper in West Hollywood. I had eagerly awaited seeing a showroom devoted to his designs, as well as those of Bujosa from Italy, Van Der Hurd, Jamb Fireplaces from England, Gracie Wallpapers, and Robert Kime Fabrics. It is very helpful about seeing a space styled with a singular vision and feel- you really get to see how pieces work together. His fabrics have beautiful, rich colorations and old world English and ethnic patterns. His furniture looks to great antique pieces and reinterprets them for today-- their scale and finish is appropriate for comfortable living rooms and bedrooms in beach houses and city aeries. In cerused oak to gesso and dark wood, the form and details in the furniture makes each piece stand alone. Named for his dog, Jasper, the collection is filled with this Anglophiles touch and panache for easy living. His inviting spaces drew in Cindy Crawford and the Obama's. Now you can have a bit of his casual luxe look for yourself.

A vignette mixes artwork and a bamboo bed

Fabric bays hold wings filled with lines including his own.

Classic usable pieces, like a great wing chair and bench for the foot of the bed are on display.

Cozy seating areas capture the essence of a Michael S. Smith interior. Tons of throw pillows to sit back, and an easy place to put a drink are part of what makes his rooms great.

Smith likes to use slipcovers on pieces, especially in linen.



Tree of Life

Remy in brown is a fabric I gravitate towards every time I visit the Rosselli Showroom in the D and D. There is something about the coloration and pattern that draws me in- I just have to use it on something soon!

Remy in blue and brown

Remy in blue

Ondine in sage is another fabric that I gravitate towards- the easy to live with green is a great start for a room palette.

Maya Flower in blue and brown

Lacquer Stripe in indigo

Java Stripe in indigo
Isle Flower in aubergine
Indian Flower in Orange gets a lot of play- many decorators use it often.

Grace in willow

Dahlia in dusk


Shanxi Pottery Lamp

Serge Table Lamp

Global Sconce

Pagoda Lantern

Morton Lamp


The Monclair Bed is regal and comfortable. An upholstered head and foot board make the iron work stand out.

Jasper Hall Chair

Maxwell Mirror
Harcourt Coffee Table
Backed Bench

Grammercy Chair
Faux Bamboo Bed

Emilio Urn and Pedestal Table

Dutch Mirror

Copenhagen Table in gesso

Archer Pediment Cabinet

Hudson Side Chair

Evans Armless Bar Stool

Evans Arm Chair
Elinda Side Chair

Dolina Side Chair

Barton Arm Chair
Versailles Jardiniere

Vendome Side Chair


by Marisa Marcantonio

Good things come to those who wait. This is often the case with custom furniture. You may have to wait ten to twenty weeks for a custom bench made piece from Matthews and Parker, but they are worth the wait! Their hand - crafted designs are produced in the New York area, and are built by highly trained craftspeople. From shagreen to bronze, their well honed skills can create an array of table, etagere and bench designs. In addition, they are Springer experts and can repair and authenticate his designs. Here are a few standouts from their assortment, which can be found in trade showrooms such as Michael Smith, Brunschwig and Fils and Ainsworth Noah.

photos courtesy of Matthews and Parker
Telephone Tables have such an allure for me. Tiny tables, like the K.S. shown here, done originally by Karl Springer for the Duchess of Windsor, are close to my heart-- they serve a function and look great while doing it.

J'adore these gems. Like a classic Cartier Rolling Ring, these French 1950's Pirouette Gueridon tables will be around and used forever. The spring coil design has a dynamism and sense of fun.

The Butler's Table is in lacquer with a gilt top. Perfect for a book, a drink and free time.
Their K.S. Jansen Table is a Karl Springer design is clean with it's bronze and brass detailing.
The JMF Double Shelf Table, that's Jean Michel Frank, the French furniture genius. The slight sweep of the leg is elegant and supports the scale of the top.

The Duchess Coffee Table is linen wrapped and lacquer sealed. It has a smart shallow profile and a storage shelf.

The KS Philippe X Bench would look great in a pair at the foot of a bed or around a center hall table. It's sleek iron frame work design makes the upholstery choice really stand out.
The Delacourt Bench is a French 1940's design, made of carved cerused oak with campaign detailing.


by Marisa Marcantonio

Photo Courtesy of Rizzoli

As Domino reported earlier today, L.A interior designer Michael S. Smith will be bringing some new design schemes to the White House. His lush, old -world design aesthetic will transform the private quarters. Smith is all about having a wonderful mix-- textiles, beautiful woods, interesting materials and stunning decorative objects. His love of Georgian architecture and interiors inform is work, as do his global travels. Ethnic textiles, often suzanis, bring that well- traveled sensibility. In addition, I suspect he is a bit of an Anglophile. He studied at the Victoria and Albert Museum where he was submersed in the beauty and history of the British design tradition. This influence is evident in his own product collections. Jasper furniture and fabrics, Visual Comfort Lighting, Kallista and Ann Sacks bath, PFM and Mansour collection are all brit-inflected. But with ease of living and comfort as hallmarks, I think this is a great choice the Obama's have made. Michael loves his labradoodles (Jasper the dog is the mascot of his fabric collection), lets hope the Obama's choose one for First Dog !