In Vogue

Posted By Julia-Chicago | Mar 23, 2010 | 5 Comments | Category: Art, Celebs

{via Coco Perez}

I am obsessed with the Vogue documentary “The September Issue.” Anna Wintour is so incredibly fascinating, and don’t even get me started on the clothes.  It is an hour and a half feast for the eyes.  It truly is such a captivating film.

Artist Alex Katz captured the trademark look of Anna Wintour in his signature, poppy style.  As reported on Coco Perez (yes, yes, I am a fan, especially of the fashion offshoot Coco Perez), Katz asked Anna to remove her wardrobe staple- her sunglasses- because he loved her eyes after seeing them in the film.

I think Katz did a remarkable job of capturing the essence of Anna, which if any of you have seen the film, is particuarly rigid and cold.  Always impeccably groomed, not a hair is out of place in Katz’s portrait.  Somehow though, Katz has managed to show glimmers of vulnerability and intimacy in this painting, which makes Anna ever the more intriguing.

With a career spanning over 50 years, Alex Katz has created an endless number of stunning works.  Take a look at some other favorites:

{Blueberry Field, 1968}

{Orange Interior, 1968}

{Poppy, 1968}

{Gray Umbrella, 1979}

{Samantha, 1987}

{Black Shoes, 1988}

{White Hat, 1990}

{Orange Hat, 1990}

{Grey Dress, 1992}

{Marina Del Ray, 1993}

{Margite Smiles, 1994}

{David and Janet, 1995}

{Eleuthera, 1999}

{Unfamiliar Image, 2001}

{Sharon, 2009}





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Yes, Kanye has a blog and yes, I read it.  Don’t be too quick to judge…he has very fascinating taste and showcases  not only the latest from the world of hip-hop but also what is on the cutting edge of the art, architecture and design worlds as well.  Kanye is quite the well-rounded gentleman!

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In the design section I came across an incredible find….a kitchen island covered in legos!  Take a look and see for yourself. Parisian designers Simon Pillard and Philippe Rosetti purchased a basic kitchen island and transformed it with over 20,000 legos.  Who says you have to put the legos away once you reach the age of about 10?  Certainly not these two!

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Perez, Pets and Paintings

Posted By Julia-Chicago | Jan 08, 2010 | 10 Comments | Category: Art, Celebs

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I am a Perez Hilton reader, guilty as charged.  Who doesn’t want to know about Lindsay Lohan’s (fondly dubbed “La Loca” or “Lindsanity” by Perez) latest breakdown or which celebs were spotted this week courtside at the Lakers game?  Whether or not you are interested in all of the celebrity gossip, you have to check out the animal portraiture that I discovered on Perez.  Animal artist Sam Charles Hodgson painted a portrait back in August of Perez’s adorable labordoodle, Teddy, and I have been meaning to share these remarkable works of art with MG.

This is not your traditional animal artwork.  They are so beautiful and tasteful, and not at all what animal artwork too often winds up being…downright creepy.  Rather, Hodgson’s contemporary take infuses the work with bright colors and an almost pop-art quality.  As the owner of two beloved dogs, I would love to have my “girls” immortalized by Sam Charles Hodgson! Check out some of Hodgson’s work below and let me know what you think.

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Sam also does wild animal portraiture too!

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Food Network at Home

Posted By Julia-Chicago | Jan 01, 2010 | 9 Comments | Category: Celebs, Kitchens

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{Giada’s Food Network Kitchen}

As I sit here on this first day of 2010 (where did 2009 go?!) nursing somewhat of a “headache” watching Giada De Laurentiis on Food Network, I got the sudden urge to google “Food Network Homes.”  To my surprise, Giada’s kitchen on “Everyday Italian” is not from her own home.  It is actually the kitchen of a house close to her own house in Malibu.  Her actual home is less cottagy and more European contemporary. The beautiful modern residence blends beachy with contemporary extremely well and looks like the ideal home for what other than entertaining.  Check out the photos from the 2008 issue of Architectural Digest.  If I weren’t so “tired” today I’d almost be inspired to whip up the fab dish of grilled salmon with citrus salsa verde that Giada has cooking right now!

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I’m loving Giada’s outfit!

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This yellow chair is so fab!

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I’d take this view any day…

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With Giada’s cooking and this view, this home was built for entertaining!

Have a happy new year all of you Material Girls!





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Essie’s new flavorful Winter Collection has me smitten like never before… Mint Candy Apple, Lollipop and Rock Candy have joined the Essie line up and are far too fabulous to cover fingertips alone…

Don’t you agree?

Essie Winter Collection

Mint Candy Apple floors shine amid snow white subway tiles and lacquered cabinetry… I am eating this Windsor Smith kitchen up with a spoon! Delish!

Windsor Smith Kitchen

Sarah Jessica Parker packs a Lollipop punch in her Hamptons kitchen with Enzo Mari art and a glossy red island center.

Sarah Jessica Parker Red - Hamptons

Betsey Johnson, Eye Candy Goddess, coated her NYC Penthouse sky in Rock Candy-inspired hues… Can we blame her?

Betsy Johnson Living

I just love how a tiny .5 oz. bottle can inspire an entire room… Don’t you?

Essie Mint Candy Apple

{Images collected from Elle Decor and Elle Decor UK.}





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Slow Dancing in a Burning Room

Posted By Julia-Chicago | Aug 11, 2009 | 4 Comments | Category: Celebs, Magazines

John Mayer

As previously mentioned on MG, September’s Elle Decor looks very promising!  I was excited to see that the cover story about John Mayer’s posh NYC pad was online and ready for viewing on the mag’s website.  As a John Mayer fan, I was very excited and quite intrigued as to what Mayer’s home would look like…would it be a vision of sleek modernism?  A surprising ode to traditionalism?  I was happy to see that it was a manifestation of Mayer’s eclectic and often unexpected persona.  I had the pleasure of seeing him in concert this spring, and almost more striking than his sheer talent was his intelligence and dry humor.  Like Mayer himself, his home reflects deep thoughtfulness and leaves you wanting to experience more.  Can’t wait to read the full article/see additional photos in the September issue that arrived on Saturday!!

John Mayer

John Mayer

John Mayer

John Mayer





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Are you a “Real Housewives of New York” watcher like me?  One of my favorite parts was the redecoration (according to the listing, costing upwards of 300K) of housewife Jill’s Manhattan apartment, which was actually featured in the May 2009 issues of Traditional Home.  You can now own this piece of “Housewives” memorabilia for a cool $3.2 million!

Check it out and tell me what you think.  (I am not including the before pics…take my word for it if you didn’t see it for yourself on the show, the apartment looks FAR better post decorating overhaul)

I am a big fan of the blues and whites incorporated throughout.  The apartment is approximately 1,956 square feet, so these light colors help to brighten and open up a smaller space.  What are your thoughts?  Ready to fork over the big bucks for this place?  In case any of you are interested, here is the listing.





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Nate and Brian

Designing couples….match made in heaven?  I think so…especially when your respective areas of “design expertise” do not compete with one another.  However, the work of one cannot help but be influenced by the other, and vice versa.  Case in point: Nate Berkus and Brian Atwood.  I have always been a fan of Nate and greatly admire his work.  We actually both had design space in the same building in the River North area of Chicago (gallery filled Superior Street) a few years back, and in addition to being what seems to be effortlessly talented, Nate is also very nice, charismatic and friendly.  And then there is the endlessly talented Brian Atwood.  His shoes and handbags are to die for, and now too is his work as the Creative Director for Bally.  Upon seeing the fabulous couple together in photographs of  an intimate dinner held in honor of Brian’s new position, I began daydreaming, fantasizing about being a fly on the wall in the midst of a Nate/Brian conversation.  What tidbits of design gold would be revealed?  And would they share ideas with each other that would show up in both of their work?  I can’t help but think so….

Brian Atwood design

Brian Design

Nate Berkus design

Nate Design

Brian Atwood design

Brian design
Nate Berkus Design

Nate Design

Brian Atwood design

Brian design

Nate Berkus design

Nate design

Brian Atwood design

Brian design

Nate Berkus design

Nate design

Can’t wait to see what else this creative duo comes up with!





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The Donald

Posted By Julia-Chicago | Jul 09, 2009 | 3 Comments | Category: Celebs, Decorating

Trump Spa

I was describing to my assistant this morning the color scheme I had in mind for a client’s guest house, and instantly what came to mind was the Spa at the Trump International Hotel, or as I like to call it, “The Donald.” I just love the cool blues, greys and chocolate browns.  Both soothing and invigorating at the same time, this color scheme is wonderful in a spa, and I can’t wait to implement it in a home.

Trump Spa

Furthermore, browsing the Trump International Hotel website made me realize all of the various amazing designs throughout the hotel.  The Donald (well, and I’m sure his fleet of highly talented designers) really struck the perfect balance between elegance, simplicity and sophistication.

Trump Hotel

Employing purple in interiors is not for the faint of heart, but I think it works beautifully with the creams and browns both of the interiors and in the breathtaking Chicago backdrop.

Trump Hotel

Trump Hotel

Isn’t the Grand Ballroom just breathtaking? I love that it is not a “traditional ballroom” per se, but it nevertheless is absolutely stunning and grand in a sort of toned down way.

Next time you are  in Chicago, make a stop at the Trump International Hotel.  Whether you choose to stay in the hotel or not, take a look around and tell me what you think!





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Tony Duquette

In the fickle world of design, a designer’s worst fear is that he or she will become irrelevant and that their legacy will be forgotten.  The transient nature of the field makes those who have created successful, internationally renowned brands even more admirable, respected and revered.  Tony Duquette exemplifies the designer who is in that “iconic strata,” whose work remains timeless and influential.  The Tony Duquette Studios were founded in 1941, and Tony’s illustrious career included costume and set design for Fred Astaire musicals, jewelery design for Tom Ford at Gucci, a Tony Award for Costume Design for the musical “Camelot,” and elite residential and commercial interiors throughout the world.  Although he passed away in 1999, Tony’s legacy is carried on under the direction of Hutton Wilkinson, his business partner since 1972.

Tony Duquette

The other week I had the pleasure of meeting Hutton Wilkinson at a book signing at the Baker Showroom in Chicago, where they were not only selling the Tony Duquette book but were also showcasing the Tony Duquette collection at Baker.  Baker’s recreation of some of Tony’s most renowned furniture and accessories is exquisite.  His exuberant style has been meticulously represented in these recreations, and they as much inspire fantasy and stir the imagination today as they did when were created as much as 60 years ago.  It is exciting to view these pieces in their original setting, (Tony never duplicated any of his work; everything was custom created for the individual client, architecture and his own distinct vision!) but one can also imagine transferring these pieces into a fabulous 21st century home.

Tony Duquette

Here is the Biomorphic Console in its original setting, the 1960′s Charles and Palmer Ducommun Bel Air estate.

Tony Duquette

And here is the Biomorphic Console recreated from Baker that now you can have in your own home!

Tony Duquette

The Dining Room of the Charles and Palmer Ducommun Estate.

Tony Duquette

The Palmer Chair from Baker, recreated from the Charles and Palmer Ducommun Estate.

Tony Duquette

Another view of Duquette designs in the Charles and Palmer Ducommun Bel Air Estate.

Tony Duquette

The Abalone Chandelier from Baker.  Although it was hung (as seen above) in the Drawing Room of the Ducommun Estate, the chandelier was originally part of Duquette’s one-man show at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

With the Tony Duquette Collection at Baker, you can now own your own piece inspired directly by one of the design world’s design greats.  What are your thoughts on this unique collection?

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