STYLISH GIFT IDEAS FROM UBER STYLISH TASTEMAKERS, EDITORS AND DESIGNERS

by Marisa Marcantonio

No matter how you say thank you to friends and family this holiday season, say it with style. I talked to the best talent and creative minds in the interior design industry to see what they were giving this year. The results are a mix of varied treasures, sure to make any recipient glad to have a friend that chic!

Photo courtesy of Hutton Wilkinson
Tony Duquette designer Hutton Wilkinson will be "giving everyone on my list limited edition signed and numbered special edition set of my books, Tony Duquette and More is More, double boxed in a Jim Thompson fabric slip case with gilded edges, special book plates and satin ribbons." Ooh la la, am I on that list, I hope?

Photo courtesy of Allegra Hicks
London- based Allegra Hicks does fashion and fabrics with Lee Jofa. She just came out with a new book, and will be giving friends and loved one's the Travel Bag she has designed for her collection.

Photo courtesy of Benneton Graveur
Christopher Spitzmiller helps friends remember essential dates with engraved calendars from Benneton Graveur.

Photo courtesy of Very Vera
Julia Noran, founder of Editor at Large likes to give cakes for the holidays. "Very Vera is the best!" she exclaimed.


Billecart-Salmon Brut Rosé Champagne
Interior designer Kevin Isbell's favorite gift to give go to gift for the holiday season is a chilled bottle of Billecart-Salmon Brut Rosé champagne. It makes the perfect hostess gift, or a simple token of appreciation. The Billecart-Salmon has a beautiful rose color and is dry without being overly dry. For those extra special occasions opt for the Billecart-Salmon Brut Cuvee Elisabeth 2000. It's worth every penny.

Photo courtesy of Hollyhock
LA's Suzanne Rheinstein likes to give embroidered and applique cocktail napkins she has made for her LA shop, Hollyhock.

Photo courtesy of Barneys
Architects James Shearron and Richard Bories of Bories and Sharron revealed, "We love to give Cire Trudon candles. Our favorite is Roi Soleil....eucalyptus, orange, cedar, fir and green leaves. The fragrance of the "Mirror Gallery" of the Chateau de Versailles."

Photo courtesy Jonathan Adler
The best giftie according to Jonathan Adler is his whimsical needlepoint Astrology Pillow. They really are fun.

Photo courtesy of Treillage
Bunny Williams likes to give her fragranced candle and bone lidded container to put it in. Available at her shop, Treillage.

Photo courtesy of Eduardo Garza
Amanda Nisbet is a big fan of designer Eduardo Garza and his handmade decorative boxes, "they are fabulous for their color, texture and duality of materials."
Photo courtesy of Nina Campbell
After a collaboration with Brit fashion designer Ted Baker, Nina Campbell is giving her Perroquet - patterned Osborne and Little fabric shoe trees cosmetic bags and hangers to friends as stocking stuffers.

Aesthetic eye Timothy Whealon designs projects around the globe but loves the delicious all - American confections from Hughes Home Maid Chocolates in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. To order, call 920-231-7232.

Photo courtesy of Robyn Brooks NY
Home accessories designer Robyn Brooks will be helping her friends keep track of their luggage on holiday travels with luggage tags she designed.

Photo courtesy of For Your Party
Sophie Donelson, freelance writer and Editor TV host shared,
"I never tire of giving cheeky custom party supplies from For Your Party. For a friend in Red Hook, Brooklyn, I designed coasters with an anchor illustration and the phrase, Red Hook: Not Just For Hookers. For my parents, who live in my hometown of Ashburnham, Mass. (which I loving refer to as The 'Ham), I gifted, 'ham is where the heart is paper napkins."

Quest's Executive Editor Georgina Schaeffer will be giving her godchild a cute towel from Personalization Mall.

Photo courtesy of Fouta Lifestyle
Mieke Ten Have, Elle Decor's new Associate Style Editor is giving her friends Fouta Lifestyle's Tunisian towel. Is it a wrap, towel, or blanket? You decide.

Photo courtesy of Mecox Gardens
Mac Hoak of Mecox Gardens has a great selection of antique bookends. These lions are fierce.

Thomas Jayne treats friends to hand made business card holders in red leather from Peter Hermann Leather Goods at 118 Thompson Street, New York 212 966 9050.

LA based designer Ruthie Sommers is going the environmental route, giving friends a tree in the Amazon rain forest through Rainforest Forever.

Photo courtesy of Kathryn M. Ireland
LA designer Kathryn M. Ireland carries Hugo Guiness prints in her Almont Yard shop and online, which she will be giving for the holidays.

Photo courtesy of Liz O'Brien
Vintage furniture guru Liz O’Brien will be giving her friends a glowing gift. These reproduction brass, mirror and glass hurricanes originally designed by Albert Hadley in the late 1960’s for a Washington DC nightclub called Pisces.

Photo courtesy of Branca
Chicago interior designer with a newly launched website and blog, Alessandra Branca, loves the shimmer and pop of the Silvered Log Stool from Branca.

Photo courtesy of Michael Devine
Fabric designer and blogger Michael Devine will be gifting Venice Trinket Trays in his fabrics to friends.

Lindsey Coral Harper, a New York- based interior designer who is great with color is giving friends her holiday soy candle from Lamshop, her furniture line.
Photo courtesy of Taschen
LA Interior designer Trip Haenisch will be giving 100 Contemporary Artists from Taschen. “Art is a very important element of my design and is an important part of a well-done home. As a designer, part of my process is to educate my clients and to expose them to the best; be it art, furniture, fabric or accessories. I see what they respond to and take my inspiration from that. This book serves to educate my clients and friends to contemporary art and will also look great on a coffee table!”

Photo courtesy of Porthault
Celerie Kemble said, "I love the odd D. Porthault dumbell pillow (great for travel) or showercap --a granny chic useful trifle-- for girls."

Photo courtesy of Bernard Maisner
Nandita Khanna, a senior editor at Town and Country shared, "I don’t think you can ever go wrong with beautiful stationary from Bernard Maisner. This winter he’s created a selection of note pads with his signature whimsical illustrations—the question marks are my favorite. Even in the day of the iPad, iPhone and Blackberry, I still love having a chic notepad to jot down to-do lists, or take messages on. I’ll give a selection of these to friends whose holiday parties I’ll attend.”

Photo courtesy of Kim Seybert
Tabletop accessory ace Kim Seybert likes to give friends accessories from her Heavy Metal Collection.

Photo Courtesy of York Street Studio Gimme Power
Writer and interior industry talent Susanna Salk's tech take is interesting: "My friends at York Street Studio just designed this way cool silver hand charger for the iphone and Apple snatched it up. The perfect gift for my most fave and fab friends!" Order through York Street.

Photo courtesy of Diane James
Carolyne James McDonough will be giving friends her new Diane James Home signature scent candle, "with pretty packaging done by none other than the talented painter Patricia Von Esche of PVE Design!"

Photo courtesy of Hubs
LA designer Betsy Burnham is giving Hubs Peanuts, because, "I give these every year to clients, vendors, friends, neighbors. they are the biggest, heartiest, most delicious peanuts you’ve ever had. and the chocolate covered ones are to die for! I love them because they’re festive without being typically christmas-y (or super unhealthy), and also because the company is family owned and the product is locally grown (well, in virginia) and unbelievably fresh."

Photo courtesy of Marcia Sherrill
The Deenie Tote is what writer, antique dealer and all around creative entrepreneur Marcia Sherril is gifting, "I am giving everyone an Anabelle by Marcia Sherrill handbag, for one thing most of my friends have bags named after them....and they are the perfect accessory!"



TONY DOUQUETTE DESIGNS LAND UNDERFOOT WITH RUGS

by Marisa Marcantonio


Photo Courtesy of Hutton Wilkinson
Hutton Wilkinson, protege and collaborator of Tony Duquette's for over 30 years, rounds out an exuberant collection of fabrics,wallpaper, lighting and furniture with the newest addition, rugs. Duquette is known for creating elaborate Broadway costumes, stage settings and over the top decorative items for New York and Hollywood cognoscenti. His furnishings were often re - purposed from found materials that were elevated by using unique finishing techniques with bold and exuberant results. He lived to 85, and his designs were so in demand that catalogs from a Christie's auction in the 80's sold out immediately. Hutton has made sure the Duquette legacy lives on, by collaborating with companies that best executed the vision-- Baker Furniture, Remains Lighting, Jim Thompson Fabrics and now, Roubini for rugs. The rugs capture the greatest hits of Duquette, bringing glamour and drama to the floor.


A personal favorite, Malachite, in an all- over pattern



Leopard in Spinach has an op art quality to it


Fireworks looks both old and new, with an art deco feel


Duquette loved Coral, and the rug is constant pattern of a flowing coral field



Tibetan Sun is a close match to the fabric pattern, and the dominant colors can take a room in many directions

Golden Sunburst with it's rays and overlapping beams is like a modern work of art


Ermine, a Duquette symbol of glamour and the high life, becomes an abstracted pattern when used evenly across the ground


Beauty and The Beast brings Broadway to life, with a charming grisaille stage set

THE RELEVANCE OF DESIGN BOOKS AND A NEW ONE: ROOMS TO INSPIRE IN THE COUNTRY

by Marisa Marcantonio

The other day Potterton Books sponsored an interior designer gathering at Kips Bay. The round table discussion included design books, their reason for being and purpose today. All the designers agreed books are better than ever, they read refer to them daily and their libraries are overflowing with new one's they cannot resist buying.

Photo by Tim Street-Porter


Annie Kelly, whose new book Rooms to Inspire in the Country, is shown below, moderated a lively talk between Jamie Drake, Anne Pyne of McMillen, Jeffrey Bilhuber, Bunny Williams and Juan Montoya.
The first question was about Bunny's runaway success book, Affair with a House. In its 10th printing (a big number for design books), the book has the winning formula which she thinks is due to its personal nature. Relatable recipes, real life entertaining relaxed living resonate with the reader, as it is a window into the way Bunny and her husband John Rosselli really live. She shared that the house was a long undertaking, and decorating and renovating happened in stages--- not in a year or two like client's projects. Musing on the power of books she ended with this: "my last penny I would spend on buying a rare design book--it is our education". No doubt there is much to glean from historic texts and images.
Anne Pyne of McMillan is working with Acanthus Press on a book about the history of the legendary firm. Her approach is much more academic, with footnotes and a lot of archival research. She is clear she wants the book to be an historically accurately account of the work and times of the firm. For a visual, she brought a stack of books that are her reading essentials. She recommends Frank Alva Parsons (founder of Parsons) Interior Design and Decoration: Its Principals and Practice from 1931, The Poetics of Space by Gaston Bachelard from 1958, Cecil Beaton's The Glass of Fashion from 1921 and The History of English Furniture by Percy Macquoid and Ralph Edwards.
Juan Montoya wants his books to inspire, not just teach. He feels that books as oppose to magazines stay true to a designer's vision, since they have the say so and final approval on how their rooms are photographed, styled and written about.
Jeffrey Bilhuber recently came out with his fourth book, Defining Luxury. It's large format with brightly hued interiors is fresh and magazine- like, with its use of vignettes and close up shots. He shared that he feels books are a barometer of change and evolution that document societal changes. He uses design books daily as references for upcoming schemes and to share history and ideas with the clients. When discussing magazine editorial versus doing a book, he likes the fact that "you can control the process and edit through your eyes--you know what's there" but that "the camera will never capture what the eye sees." Being there in person is the next best thing.
Jamie Drake has Bloomberg as a client and has worked with Madonna. His book covers the first 28 years of his firm. His comment about magazine photography was, "you see see so much but you really see so little", referring to the closeness of many of the shots, styling by editors and omissions of what tells the interior's story. In a book you can show a whole room, and break it down into moments, which is a great platform for complete interiors.
What is next for this group? Bunny is working on A Scrapbook for Living about the essence of rooms and what makes them special, while Jeffrey is exploring how he gets from concept to completion of an interior and what inspires him.



Photos Courtesy of Rizzoli
A green painted bedroom fireplace with blue and white apothecary jars lining the mantel

In her follow up on Rizzoli's Rooms to Inspire, this new book delves into the homes of tastemakers and colorful characters who enjoy the country for relaxing, entertaining and renovating. A variety of design perspectives from new modern ruralism to over the top decadence are seen through the lens of Annie's photographer husband, Tim Street- Porter. The duo once again brings together a collection of covetable homes from around the country. I think people will start to use bright paint hues creatively after a good read of this tome!


Decorator Henry Davis Sleeper's nautical dining room in the seaside town of Beauport, Massachusetts has teal paint accents and a great collection on antique green china.


Molly Duffy and Hugh Burns Southampton LI beachside escape mixes Chinese Chippendale and light hearted lanterns with pastel lilac walls.

Steven Gambrel's Sag Harbor, LI sailors cottages from 1790 are filled with nautical details. Here, a melon hued bedroom has framed artwork of a boat that was made from antique wallpaper. What a clever use of color and material, especially if the rest of the wallpaper was damaged or not usable.


Steven Gambrel has a casual living room with crisp white bead board siding and reclaimed wood beams.


The breakfast room has pastel walls with French rush chairs surrounding an 18th century Belgian table

Ally and Jock Spivy's Victorian dining room in Kinderhook, NY. A 19th Century antique sideboard in rich burled wood pops against the bright pink wall.

Charming! In his garden Tim Street-Porter created a garden folly after John Fowler's original in England.

Tony Duquette's Malibu ranch guesthouse with layered fabrics and textures in coral gold and green.

LEGENDS OF LA CIENEGA DESIGN WALK- LA'S DESIGN HAPPENING OF THE MOMENT

by Marisa Marcantonio

California's La Cienega Boulevard Design Quarter will get some much deserved attention over the next three days with the first Legends of La Cienega Design Walk. By celebrating design icons in window vignettes, today's LA interior designers reinterpret the work of home decor legends. Benefiting Habitat for Humanity Greater Los Angeles and sponsored by Elle Decor, a variety of design events are taking place through this Sunday, including book readings and panel discussions. Check out the full schedule at Elle Decor Legends.
For the shops that did not partake in the LA Antique Show, this is a way for them to get traffic. Over 40 decorative arts and antiques dealers in the area, the leading design district on the west coast, have banded together to form a supportive design alliance. This area needs all the interior designer rallying it can get, since fashion boutiques like Monique L'Huillier are slowly taking over.
Alluring window dressing was no problem for these designers. Below are some reasons to rubberneck:



Madeline Stuart honors Dorothy Draper at Downtown



McMillen, as created by Thomas Buckley at at Therien & Co.



Anthony Hail, presented by Jeffrey Hitchcock at Ralf's Antiques & Fine Arts



Sister Parish, exuberantly brought back by Joe Nye at Navona Antiques



At Paul Marra, a touch of zebra in a salute to Michael Taylor by Suzanne Tucker



Tony Duquette, channeled by Hutton Wilkinson at Baker Furniture




James Northcutt & Lou Cataffo, presented by Hendrix Allardyce at Jean de Merry


Chet Chidester, safari chic by Martyn Lawrence-Bullard at Woodson & Rummerfield's House of Design


Tim Clarke celebrates Mark Hampton at George Smith



Kim Alexandriuk tented the space in yards of fabric creating a Gladys Belzer moment at Bausman & Company



Suzanne Rheinstein presents a celebration of the legendary Elsie de Wolf at Downtown


All photos courtesy of Mark Savage and Elle Decor
Kalef Alaton with a light touch by Kerry Joyce at Rose Tarlow