Animal Instincts

Now that we are past New York Fashion Week, let’s talk about a real trend-setter with values deeply rooted in the earth, well-being, and humanity.

Before it was popular, Imelda McCain (seen above) opened her all-handmade toy store, Playing Mantis, in Tribecca in with the goal of providing families and children with toys she felt were worthy of—and that she was already making for—her own son, Lucas (seen below). Not only has she been providing smart, wholesome, green toys for local families for the past 8 years, but she has been giving back to craftsmen and their families and communities—around the globe—in the process.

According to Imelda, every toy has to have a story and a passionate creator behind them. With these altruistic standards in mind, Imelda has had many years of success with Playing Mantis as she has watched Lucas, now 14, grow up. She has been making toys out of felted wool (from her own alpaca & sheep farm) and wood since the get go, but this year she has started a new line that I think is particularly fabulous, and Lucas agrees.

So if you are left feeling drained from another overly-commercial Fashion Week, take a peek at these stunning creations of Imelda’s and feel inspired, refreshed, and perhaps a few years younger? Coincidentally—or not—Halloween is just around the corner and so is Playing Mantis where Imelda has all of her homemade, homegrown, felted-wool beauties on display and for sale! I hope you enjoy them as much as I do! And if you haven’t been to Imelda’s shop, it’s well worth a visit.

 

Art Southampton 2014

Over the weekend, I went to Art Southampton, the premier international contemporary and modern art fair that took place at the peak of the season in the Hamptons. The show featured more than 75 international art galleries with a strong focus on works from the 20th & 21st  centuries. Contrary to some other large art fairs like this, there was an abundance of really impressive work. Here are some of my favorites from the show. Enjoy!

Jackson Fine Art: Vee Speers (left) an Christian Chaize (right)

Jackson Fine Art: Christian Chaize

amazing flameworked milk glass by Amber Cowan. Made from antique pieces of milk glass and new details an then fuzed together

amazing flameworked milk glass by Amber Cowan. Made from antique pieces of milk glass and new details an then fuzed together

triptych by Lluis Barba: The Cynthia Corbett Gallery

Smoke and graphite piece by Rachael Nee: Cube Gallery

a show-stopping (and huge) painting by Wolf Kahn shown by Birnam Wood Galleries

My favorite of the show. Large painting by Juliane Hundertmark, represented by the artist’s own gallery, Galerie Juliane Hundertmark

These were amazing! Sang-Sik Hong constructed these out of thousands of straws!! They were so beautiful in person. Photos not doing them justice. Gamo Gallery

These were amazing! Sang-Sik Hong constructed these out of thousands of straws!! They were so beautiful in person. Photos not doing them justice. Gamo Gallery

small erie painting by Alexey Terenin at the Mayer Fine Art booth

Absolutely love this set of 12 plates by Damien Hirst. Each one unique from his butterfly grid paintings series

Absolutely love this set of 12 plates by Damien Hirst. Each one unique from his butterfly grid paintings series

Another favorite from the show. This pastel on paper by Kelly Reemtsen (Debuck Gallery) was so fabulous! the artist’s rendering skills are undeniable and the colors and subject matter as so juicy and twisted. Love it!

A detail from a pastel on paper by Kelly Reemtsen (Debuck Gallery) Love how she renders hands. Beautiful form!

Painting by Elaine de Kooning

insanely imaginative feather-covered taxidermy by Enriquez Gomez Demolina at Pan America Art Projects’ booth. This one with full peacock tail and vibrant feather armor.

insanely imaginative feather-covered taxidermy by Enriquez Gomez Demolina at Pan America Art Projects’ booth. This one with feather body (think Falcor from Never Ending Story) and hints of periwinkle in the fur

insanely imaginative feather-covered taxidermy by Enriquez Gomez Demolina at Pan America Art Projects’ booth. These 3 divas were hairy and hilarious!!

insanely imaginative feather-covered taxidermy by Enriquez Gomez Demolina at Pan America Art Projects’ booth. Details from the 3 divas

Artists & Galleries mentioned above:

Vee Speers & Christian Chaize, Jackson Fine Art
Amber Cowan
Lluis Barba, Cynthia Corbett Gallery
Rachael Nee, Cube Gallery
Wolf Kahn, Birnam Wood Galleries
Juliane Hundertmark
Hong Sang-Sik, Gamo Gallery
Alexey Terenin, Mayer Fine Art
Damien Hirst, ARCHEUS/POST-MODERN
Kelly Reemtsen, De buck Gallery
Enriquez Gomez Demolina, Pan America Art Projects

Rhinestone Retro Rehab

I rehabbed a few pairs of damaged vintage deco earrings today and made a cuff bracelet to match with a salvaged beaded appliqué from a beat-up vintage dress from Salvation Army.

Earrings: I removed both the clip-on backs and post backs from the 2 pairs of earrings, to start. With fine, but heavy weight fiber wire I strung the earrings together and fastened them to new, stainless steel (hypo-allergenic) earring hooks. Side story, my grandmother wore the long rhinestone-cluster ones—that look like lincoln center’s huge exterior chandeliers—to Nixon’s inaugural ball in the late 60’s. They are my absolute favorite but were both missing a bead at the top… and were clip-on.

 

Here’s what I did to make the bracelet:

 1. Using crazy glue I secured the beads around the edges and trimmed excess fabric and thread.
2. I traced the appliqué onto the back of a leather sample (I used turquoise for a pop of color) and cut the leather smaller by an eighth of an inch all the way around so that it would not show from the other side once bent into shape.
3. Using thick, heavy-duty woven art-hanging wire and a pair of wire cutters, I ran a spiral around the leather piece—with about a half-inch setback from the edges—and secured it in place with hot glue. (sorry, forgot to shoot his part!)
4. Once the wire was set in place on the leather, I ran a bead of hot glue around the outside edge of leather piece and several more lines along the center and then adhered it to the back of my beaded appliqué. I pressed firmly on both sides to secure them together.
5. Once glue had cooled and set completely, I bent the piece to form a cuff and fit it around my wrist an adjusted as necessary.

Swiss Miss

The living room with a narrow stairwell up to a small studio and DOLL ROOM!

Welcome to the home of Jorge & Katie Lengyel. You met them last Fall in my post about DIY Hypertufa Potting Containers (which would be a great project to do this weekend for your new plantings.) Jorge is an Argentinean gentleman and artist, Katie is Dutch with a passion for crafting, collecting, and anything Anglophile. Together they have built a petit chalet that is multi-cultural, very-colorful and eccentric beyond belief.

The home is situated on a shaded property that slopes towards sparkling Lake Mohawk in the beautiful and über-Swiss village of Sparta, NJ. Between Katie’s collections, Jorge’s ingenuity, and both of their vivid imaginations, they’ve built themselves a really unique and fantastical abode worthy only of fairytales and fables. I think you’ll agree that this feast for the eyes is like nothing you’ve ever seen in real life!

Wall of eclectic finds and projects including poster of Katie’s coveted Jim Morrison

Katie made this fabulous little ottoman. She used nozzles for legs as well. Such a fun piece.

Pie chest filled with china and adorned with kitsch galore

This is my favorite vignette in the house. Big porcelain basin in the kitchen with 2 faucets looks out onto their front porch and natural landscaping. The sill is covered in colorful toys, some as-is, some Katie’s hybrid sculptures.

 

To the left and right of the sink are these great and simple industrial racks that hold their drying dishes and everyday needs… and some kitsch of course

To the left and right of the sink are these great and simple industrial racks that hold their drying dishes and everyday needs… and some kitsch of course.

This kitchen cabinetry serves as both storage and a buffet for the dining room. Katie and Jorge cut thick felt trim for each shelf and attached it with decorative nail heads. This is one of the spots Katie displays her British wares

The silver is always polished and in use on the Anglo’d-out buffet in the dining room

A view from the den into the dining room and kitchen beyond. Two leather chairs in foreground face a cast iron potbelly stove and a TV. Very cozy spot on a cool night.

One of Katie & Jorge’s siamese cats, Hunter

Love this cage aux folles. Not something you see every day.

 

A quick peak into the bedroom. As you can see, this is where the blue & white china lives.

I even love her abundant perfume station (I too am a huge user of French perfumer Annick Goutal)… with a few nods to the motherland of course.

There is too much going on in Katie’s office (behind the living room stairs) to really show you in one photo, but here’s a little detail of the mix of things either waiting to be worked into one of her sculptures or just hanging around to keep her company while she works.

The powder room is incredible! The glossy, rich brown tiled walls reflect the gentle light that comes off the shell piece—that the couple made—for a really dramatic look.

The deluxe wet bar in their family room. Loads of lights spills in from the wall of doors that exit to the back porch.

A delicious little detail from above the wet bar

A detail of the ornately mosaic’d fireplace that Jorge made for Katie in their family room.

The breakfast table in their family room. As you can see, this room is all about the white and light collections

And antique china cupboard is flanked by two fabulous peeling columns.

A birdhouse collection hovers above the entertainment cupboard in the family room.

A detail of another collection in their almost-all-white family room.

 

This is Jorge about to do some gardening in the back yard. He built the home they live in. Detail of back porch in the background.

What I don’t even get to show you is the full master suite (i just give you a few details) with walk-in closet, 4-poster bead and steam shower; Jorge’s office upstairs; the creepy and magical doll room Katie has for her doll collection (too narrow to shoot); the full guest suite downstairs; the ornate herb storage wall-unit they have built leading to the basement off the kitchen; and the magnificent wrap-around back porch with abundant vintage planters (perhaps photographer friend Laura Moss will provide exterior for an upcoming post: she focused on the exterior of the home while I drooled over the interior.)

Mod Squad

I attended ICFF (International Contemporary Furniture Fair) on Monday with the fabulous team from New York Spaces magazine. We scoured miles of isles in the vast Javitz Center (in NYC) looking for interesting, inspiring product and big-picture trends in the marketplace.
Here are a few notable designs that caught my attention at the show:

really wild extruded tiles that fit together like puzzle pieces. Roughly 7 inches deep if i remember correctly… Use them for walls, floors, exterior patios, outdoor shower floors that need good drainage… the possibilities are endless and these things are probably indestructible: strength in numbers. They are by eclectic and bohemian brand, Bespoke

Fun chair by Bend in collaboration with another artist. Great piece to get all you DIYers wheels turning…

Really beautiful hand-woven chandeliers by Naomi Paul. They are collapsable, so shipping and moving are not issues.

Was never a fan of Lladro, but they are doing some interesting things as of late. I really dig their “The Guest” collection, and in particular this one by artist, Rolito. Very funky.

 

Edgy (literally) large-scale chandeliers by Gabriel Scott. The metallic interiors glistened from within the matte-finished geometric shells. So fabulous and versatile. I can imagine in a number of scenarios, classic, modern and bohemian…

Perfect little ottomans by Gabriel Scott that screamed haberdashery and fine tailoring

Opulent shagreen-patterned wallpaper in a fish scale pattern by ShagreenArt Inc. So outrageous.

Flipped when I saw this snake china by the 2nd oldest (2nd to Meisen) china manufacturer in Europe, Augartem Wein. This pattern is by Gabrielle Rotherman and was inspired by her series of snake-themed fine art.

Fabulously simple white & silver giraffe wallpaper by Sissy + Marley. Would be great in a kid’s room (obviously) or a powder room or small space.

One of several large and outrageous lights by Fort Standard

There were so many incredible prints from Eskayel, I didn’t know what to shoot! They are just REALLY LIVABLE —yet funky—patterns. Very bohemian chic.

Incredible fixtures by Apparatus! Every single one was a stunner. The sconce on the lower right side—knocked my socks off and—is made with horse hair! They even have versions with black horse hair and enameled metal. I die…

Deluxe tropical wallpaper by Timorous Beasties. Dorothy Draper’s face would melt…

The Best Sink I have ever seen. From the Metrio System by Stone Forest. I want it all. I love how the hardware fits into the stone perfectly, the thick slab, the finish of the metal…it’s perfection… speechless. I want one.

Also flipped out when I saw these porcelain skull perfume atomizers by the 2nd oldest (2nd to Meisen) china manufacturer in Europe, Augartem Wein. This is the kind of perfume atomizer I’d have in my boudoir…

Delectable little bite-size thumb drives—by Beyond Object—that look like jewelry

 

 

 

 

Mansion in May Showhouse

Over the weekend I visited the Mansion In May designer showhouse. Attracting over 25,000 visitors annually (I swear there were that many there on Sunday alone) and charging $50/pp, this very well-organized event raises tens of thousands of dollars for the Morristown Medical Center and—according to the Co-Chair—is the highest grossing showhouse in the country.

This year’s mansion—the Blairsden Estate—is located in Peapack-Gladstone, New Jersey. Blairsden is an historic 62,000 square foot, 38-room (with 25 fireplaces and 19 bathrooms) Beaux-arts estate that was completed in 1903 as a country home for Clinton Ledyard Blair—an American investment banker, sportsman and commodore of the New York Yacht Club in his early 30’s—by prominent architectural firm Carrère and Hastings.

After the death of CLB in 1949 (at the age of 82,) Blairsden—with 50 acres of the original 550 acres—was sold for an estimated $65,000 to the Sisters of St. John the Baptist and renamed St. Joseph’s Villa.

According to Art & Architecture of New Jersey, the history of the Sisters’ stay had been considered mysterious with speculation about a series of murders [of orphans] at the mansion and questions about how the nuns ran the estate. [Much to my dismay,] these rumors have been put to rest through correspondence with a former member of the Sisters of St. John the Baptist. [She confirms that] St. Joseph’s Villa was run as a retreat house open to anyone who cared to visit. It was never operated as a hotel or orphanage. Supposedly the only shooting with even a distant connection to the Sisters of St. John the Baptist occurred at the James Pierpont Morgan mansion in Glen Cove, Long Island. J.P. Morgan himself was shot in the leg at this estate, but the wound was not fatal. Sisters who made their novitiate there remember speaking of the “JP Morgan murder” which was a myth, since the famous millionaire was not murdered.

In 2002, the Sisters sold the property to the Foundation for Classical Architecture which has since been carefully restoring the house and grounds. They, in turn, sold the estate in 2012 for $4.5 million to a private owner identified by local officials as T. Eric Galloway (a NY developer and President of the Lantern Organization.) 50+ interior designers and landscape designers have spent the past few months bringing their assigned spaces in Blairsden to their original glory and beyond. Here’s a taste of my favorite highlights of the showhouse. You can still see the home until May 31, 2014.

Skylight in James Yarosh’s sun-filled central, upstairs gallery

Sitting area in BHE Studio’s salon/tea room.

Great wallpaper in BHE Studio’s Tea Bar

sitting area in Houndstooth Interior Design’s kid’s room. It was fun and colorful, yet refined and elegant.

CW&I’s “deco in bloom” guest bedroom. I wanted to dive into this deluxe bed

My favorite piece by a popular Russian artist who’s name has escaped me. The subject in the painting is the Daughter of Peter the great. This was in Elizabeth Guest’s lovely room

 

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Beneath the Surface

Talented photographer and dear friend, Laura Moss, has made her work available to the tasteful masses at last! Via FotoFoam, you can now purchase her large-scale prints and they will arrive mounted, framed to your liking, and ready to hang.

Her recent underwater photography is gorgeous and ultra-saturated (double-entendre): some polished and bright, others eery and beautiful. I spent a water-logged day with Laura last summer swimming around in floor-length gowns (a few shown below), which was certainly a unique and hilarious way to spend a hot afternoon.

Here’s a sampling of Laura’s underwater work: definitely a nice design solution for adding color to a room in one fell swoop. And I think you’ll find that FotoFoam’s framing options are incredibly chic and—according to their site—time-tested and made with the best materials.

Hypertufa Potting Party

Photography by Laura Moss, styling by Meredith McBride Kipp

Now that the hectic summer is behind us, it’s a great time to catch up with friends over an outdoor art project. Eccentric artist/collectors Jorge & Katie Lengyel invited a few pals (along with photographer Laura Moss and me) to their custom-built swiss chalet on Lake Mohawk for an afternoon of crafting.

On the agenda: Hypertufa garden containers. Hypertufa is a material that looks a lot like cement (tufa is a volcanic rock found in nature) but quite a bit lighter in weight. It’s easy to do and you can use just about anything for a mold.

What you’ll need (you can find at Home Depot, a grocery store, or at home):
•    Rubber gloves
•    Dust mask (very important when working w/cement)
•    Perlite
•    Peat moss
•    Portland cement
•    Plastic tub (or wheelbarrow)
•    Water (nearby hose ideally)
•    Spray cooking oil
•    Mold  (box, nursery pot, large bowl, etc)
•    Plastic garbage bags
•    Large leaves or branches for surface texture (optional)
•    Wire brush

Martha Stewart’s (with my edits and additions) How-to Instructions:
1. Set up your mold(s) so they are ready to go and (if porous) line them with a plastic garbage bag. If they are smooth, non-porous surfaces, merely spray inside of mold with cooking oil. I was going for a Kelly Wearstler/mid-century shape, so I built my molds out of aluminum pie tins (with the centers cut out) and duct tape.

2. Wearing rubber gloves and a dust mask, mix 3 parts perlite, 3 parts peat moss, and 2 parts Portland cement in a plastic tub or wheelbarrow. Add water to tub, a bit at a time, until the mixture has the consistency of moist cottage cheese.

3. Push a handful of wet hypertufa mixture firmly against the bottom of the mold (if you are lining the mold with leaves or branches for texture make sure that goes in before the hypertufa). Repeat until you have made a bottom base that is approximately 1 inch thick. Push handfuls of wet hypertufa mixture firmly against the sides of container approximately 3/4 inches in thickness. Continue until rim of mold is reached. Press bottom and sides firmly to remove air pockets. I used a large soda bottle to help support and shape the inside of the vessel because of its height.

4. Create drainage hole by pushing finger or small dowell through the bottom of mold so that it penetrates the hypertufa mixture.
5. Cover with plastic bag, let dry for about 48 hours.
6. Take off plastic bag and remove pot from mold (pot with be slightly wet). Using a wire brush, rough up the surface of the hypertufa for a more rustic appearance. Let sit for 2 to 3 weeks to cure completely. Now you’ll be all set for your early spring plantings!

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amerelife.com by Meredith McBride Kipp is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

© Meredith McBride Kipp and amerelife.com. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Meredith McBride Kipp and amerelife.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Hampton Designer Showhouse


Mark your calendars decor deal-finders and haute-hunters! Only one more week to go until Traditional Home’s annual Hampton Designer Showhouse has their online auction! A handful of special items from each designer will be auctioned off… and (a portion of) the proceeds will benefit Southampton Hospital.

A few weekends ago, my husband Ryerson and I attended the Gala Preview Party for the debut of the 2013 Hampton Designer Showhouse. The party was lively, the cocktails were flowing, the crowd was very glamorous and the interior design was exceptional.

Though we did not get to meet him, we saw Thom Felicia (if you look closely at the picture above, you’ll see him checking in). Upon arrival, we decided to see the house before checking out the outdoor party—which turned out to be a good game plan—and we moved through each room and meet all the designers with ease and sans traffic.

After passing through Celerie Kemble‘s grand but restful master bedroom, I spotted idol and decor celeb (and Honorary Showhouse Chairman), Mario Buatta. I immediately turned red and noted the lack of AC in the house. I’ve met Mr. Buatta probably 3 or 4 times now, but have never managed to have a satisfying conversation over the sound of my chattering teeth. This time was no better… He had an absurdly robust plume of chest hair protruding from the top of his neckline—normally buttoned and bow-tied—that I fought hard not to make eye-contact with while I reintroduced myself. I explained that I had just written a magazine column on him and his new retrospective (Mario Buatta: Fifty Years of American Interior Decoration, published by Rizzoli) that is about to come out. He seemed amused watching as I struggled with his practical joke (see photos below, it was indeed faux chest hair that came out later in the party). We parted ways—me reeling from missed opportunities of composure and humor—and bee-lined it for the bar.

The back yard was abustle with a lively, quintessential Hamptons summer party crowd. After procuring a cocktail, we had the pleasure of bumping into another of my interior design idols, Vicente Wolf, and his friend (also a well-known interior designer) Matthew Yee. We were engaging in a nice little chat (everything my Buatta conversation was not) until—out of nowhere—Vicente & Matthew sprang away! Before I could worry about what I’d said, the lawn sprinkler soaked my lower half, and I too leapt backwards (before it got my white silk shirt) and watched in shock as women (and men) screamed and ran. Gowns got soaked, seersucker wilted, and white linen pants became see-through. It was hilarious. And a blessing in disguise? I think so: it was over 100°F and wildly humid out.

After that, it was time to go. Plenty of excitement for one decor party night.


ABOVE: Lillian August‘s cheerful and punchy dining room. I love the painting on the back wall by Julie Headland.
BELOW: Bakes and Company‘s kitchen with outrageous countertops and custom refrigerators and freezer drawers (shown bottom left). Hot!

Below (3 photos) of Patricia Fisher Design‘s sitting area and breakfast nook. The saffron and light grey with pops of bright green were a refreshing and inviting combo.


Below (2) photos taken from upstairs of the guests cruising through the entry foyer by Michael Herold Design, and the living room by Brian del Toro Inc.

Brady Design‘s beautiful and serene guest room/tv room. The hand-crafted mattress upholstered in baby alpaca was the inspiration for the room, as it could be used as a lounge during the winter OR covered with sheets during the guest-ing season.

Alan Court & Associates‘s (Alan shown below) created a stunning guest bath with stone and leather walls! I had to touch.

Barbara Page Home‘s playful guest room overlooking the backyard had dramatic photography from Robin Rice Gallery

Celerie Kemble‘s master bedroom with charcoal seagrass walls and pops of turquoise and blue hues.
The charming Mr. Mario Buatta, before and after my chest shrug run-in. I guess he got too hot! Here’s a link to the piece I wrote about his book that comes out in September

Below is my favorite room in the house, by Bradley Stephens, Stephens Design Group (photo courtesy of KDHamptons.com). These masculine quarters share a 2-sided fireplace with the master bedroom and the ceiling (though you can’t tell from the photo) covered in a fabulous, distressed-wood wallpaper. Bradley said it was a painstaking job, but added so much to the room that it was worth the effort. The room was eclectic and handsome and had a wonderful mix of art and artifacts, including an dissected lobster, similar to one I saw a few years back in the world-famous taxidermist, Deyrolle (one of my favorite places in Paris).

Michael Mariotti’s glamorous master bath with patterned seagrass walls, ornate tiling, and a beautiful leather bench with flocatti throw.

Sherrill Canet Interior’s Morroccan-inspired family room for Pearson (where all the furniture and textiles are from). Sherrill laid all the mirrors out on the ground in the middle of a market in Morrocco in order to visualize them in this comfortable and graphic room!

Ken Gemes’s casual outdoor dining area facing the backyard party

The lively outdoor party

One of the aforementioned fashion-foiling sprinklers (below left); and the guests running from the scene (below right). My sad, wet, bejeweled shoes (not shown)
Click here for Editor at Large’s video coverage of the event with Traditional Home’s stylish Tory Mellot (who I worked w/at Elle Decor) doing interviews.
To read about other fabulous Hamptons events (and laugh hysterically), check out my cousin Ted Kruckel’s most recent BizBash column, “This Year’s Hamptons Events: From the Sublime to the Ridiculous”

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amerelife.com by Meredith McBride Kipp is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

© Meredith McBride Kipp and amerelife.com. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Meredith McBride Kipp and amerelife.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Designer Showhouse Soirée

On Saturday evening, I attended the Preview Party of The Designer Showhouse of New Jersey with stylish and hilarious friend, Meg Bashaw. We gabbed with tons of guests and designers at “Hidden Acres Estate”—a 10 acre property in the Chestnut Ridge area of Saddle River, NJ. Traditional Home is sponsoring the 11,000 sq. ft. home featuring more than 20 interior and landscape designers.
The showhouse is open daily through June 10th (closed Mondays) from 10am to 4pm. General admission is $30. The Heart & Vascular Hospital and Emergency Trauma Department of Hackensack University Medical Center will benefit from all proceeds.

The entryway (below) by modelesque sisters Linda Maley & Lisa Keyser of Whitepop was dramatic and fun. I particularly loved their Jagger altar at the top of the stairs.

The dining room (below) was sexy, sophisticated and eclectic. No surprise, as Jennifer McGee masters those qualities in all her work. She had fabulous artwork, comfortable chairs and great focal points. I especially loved the built-in lounge in the corner (shown below with friend Meg Bashaw) that would be a great spot for cocktails before or after a dinner party.

Next we hit Philip La Bossiere’s room (my favorite room of the evening), an ultra-chic den/study (below). His attention to fine (and inventive) detail would make anyone want to upholster a bookshelf. His work is casual and relaxed, yet so very polished. LOVE.

Down the hall to a total SHOW-STOPPER, Keith Baltimore’s ultra-glamorous party room (below). I can definitely imagine my alter-ego smoking Nat Shermans with a cigarette holder and sipping endless bubbly in here.

Upstairs we found Barbara Ostrom’s office (below) calming and just the right combo of lodge and cabana.

Opposite Barbara’s office (below), was the spouse’s office, handsomely decorated by  the lovely duo Susan & Eugene Barbieri. LOVED the carpet. LOVED the RL lamps. And great artwork by Richard Bruce.

And last, but certainly not least, Colin Patrick Corcoran (friend of a friend as it turns out) decked out a luscious bedroom (below) with eclectic and interesting art and objets. I appreciated his mix of materials throughout the room—from geodes and alligator skin to watercolors and shagreen—there was plenty of texture to behold.

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