Twice a year, I head to High Point Market in North Carolina along with two partners in design from my office.  High Point  is the largest furnishings industry trade show in the world which attracts more than 75,000 people every six months. Anyone and everyone in the interior design, furniture and accessories world can be found at High Point Market to showcase and shop all the gorgeous new product introductions. This past April, I was delighted to discover an amazing new company, Mitchell Black, and I was even more delighted to find out they were also from Chi-town!! They were only a few blocks away from my Buckingham Interiors + Design offices in Chicago this whole time! Well, hello neighbor!!

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Mitchell Black is a lifestyle brand that celebrates the aesthetic from the past through modern living (Um, how perfect to fit my trademarked Modernique mantra??)  In 2012, Mitchell Black was created from a collection of vintage copper and silver plate etchings. These etchings have taken on a new life as a luxurious line of lifestyle products designed for those who covet exquisite trappings to accessorize their lux lives. The brand’s trademark designs are displayed throughout tabletop, wall art, stationery and fragrance product lines. Mitchell Black effortlessly amplifies the way we live, entertain and celebrate.

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As we settled back in Chicago, we quickly arranged a visit to talk business, and soon it evolved into a perfect collaboration. The custom wall art studio offered so many options for my interior design clients!

With over 200 images to choose from ranging from anything architectural, modern, sweet, sexy, masculine, romantic, or royal and over 18 designer color choices, the options are endless.

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It was hard to narrow it down, but take a look at the newly installed Mitchell Black art pieces inspiring my design team in our design studio!!

“Float” in color Midnight

Lucite frames give this broken up image a modern, edgy feel. The art is also accented my two of my other fave accessory lines Dunes and Duchess (another deal struck up at Market!!) and Global Views- which is very dear to my heart!

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“Phonograph” in Royal, Periwinkle, and Midnight

We loved the statement of the repetition of 3 in ombre colors!

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Of course I couldn’t resist the “Crown England” in Violet….My last name is Buckingham after all and purple IS our BID color!

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“Columns” in another ombre color combination: Mitchell Black, Charcoal, Moon, and Ghost

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How perfect are these Metallic Mini’s again the glimmering wallpaper?? Loving this assorted collection of crowns, keys, hilts, scissors, and chess pieces!

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I’m thrilled to showcase this ultra cool line and look forward to a long-lasting business partnership!

Can’t wait till the next High Point Market in October where I will be speaking at both The Antiques and Design Center and the High Point Theatre!

xx, Julia





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The city of Chicago is chocked full of remarkable young talent and I’m always thrilled to find something and someone a little bit different to showcase in my Buckingham Interiors + Design Showroom! The white brick walls of the showroom are a revolving exhibit of beautiful paintings and photography. Our newest exhibit was just installed this week and adorned with the beautiful work of Chicago Artist Allison Osborn!

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How fun are these painted “Rolling on the Decks” skateboards and just how cute is she??!?

Her work here, entitled “Pastel Cracks” is another fave of mine.

Allison Osborn grew up on the shores of Lake Maxinkuckee in Culver, Indiana. With views of inspiration always around her, she naturally gravitated to the visual arts. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Painting with a concentration in Curatorial Studies from the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA), where she graduated Cum Laude in 2011. I have had the opportunity to mentor and work beside another MICA Grad, Jessica Williams, within my firm before she relocated to NYC with her uber talented hubby, Luke. Sorry…I digress :)

In her career, she has participated in several group shows and has had five solo shows. In 2010, she exhibited at Chicago’s Harper Gallery. In 2012, Allison was voted Best Visual Artist in Chicago and was a National Finalist when competing in the RAW Artist Competition. She exhibited in 7 group exhibits at Robin B Gallery in Chicago in 2013-2014. Allison has collectors both nationally and internationally, including West Africa and London, and has been commissioned for custom pieces by NHL player, John Michael Liles and New York Yankee’s Owner, Jennifer Steinbrenner Swindal.

A pretty impressive resume I must say for a young artist!! I am so thrilled to share her work…we have already sold a work of hers!

“Blue Dream”

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This piece took my breath away!! Simply stunning. It was a perfect fit in the showroom.

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In the Artist’s Words:

“The relationship between the fluidity and rigidness within my paintings is meant to cultivate a feeling of the unknown – mixed with an emotional connection to color, texture, and chance. Just as one can find himself or herself lost when traveling without a map, it is my hope that one can become lost in my work while enjoying the colors, texture and shapes they encounter as their eyes roam the canvas. My paintings let the viewer decipher what is happening.”

“Crocodilly”

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“My work is created with a variety of paint colors mixed with a special admixture. When the paint and agent begins to dry, a unique reaction occurs. This reaction allows the surface of the painting to interact with the mixed media and creates a new surface all of its own. I utilize specific color palette combinations that I think best suit the landscape of the canvas. The medium, when complete, creates an explosion of color, allowing the viewer to see the uncontrolled and undulated work.”

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“Seafoam & Silver”

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A trip to Chicago’s Shedd Aquarium inspired this masterpiece!!!

“Jellyfish”

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“The unexpected nuances that result recreate the landscapes of my early childhood – still waters, rolling hills, green pastures. I create my paintings for the love of solitude and exploration. They are my escape, a release of my emotions. It is my hope that my work creates a world on the canvas that both mirrors and exudes, the beauty of the world in which we live.”

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The depth and texture created in Allison’s work is truly remarkable.  Photos can’t begin to capture it!! Her work will be on display for the summer…Please stop by 1822 W Grand to check it out!!!

Hope to see y’all soon! xx





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Orange certainly IS the new black! I have always had a huge crush on orange. It just makes me happy.  It instantly makes a space positive, energizing and warm. I love combining orange with grounding colors such as brown, navy and tan, or together with turquoise and purple, it forms my favorite mid-century color combination.

But orange doesn’t like to be toned down too much. It commands attention! This vibrant hue is often a recurring color in many of my design projects…

This orange shaggy lamb stool (available from my BID Showroom in a rainbow of colors) was the perfect pop within a sea of grays in this serene bedroom sitting area.

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I couldn’t resist these fab Knoll upholstered orange Milo Baughman dining chairs for my own getaway home in Arizona…

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or these stunning orange accent chairs by Bradley upholstered in one of my fave Jim Thompson fabrics in this Chi-town Ritz Carlton Mag Mile high rise!!

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Whether using orange as an accent as I did within this Nantucket third floor guest nook using antique quilts…

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or as a big WOW factor as in these orange Farrow and Ball ”Charlottes Locks” adorned walls of the Lake Forest Infant Welfare Show house I designed last year…

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You can’t go wrong with incorporating this fab color as exhibited in my fave Brunschwig & Fils fabric on my Rondelay.

And, of course at my Buckingham I+D Showroom in Chicago you can see orange waving out to you from every direction! Check it out my Rug Company pals!

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The latest item in the showroom to get an orange makeover via my go-to Orange Burst by Benjamin Moore
is this Mid-Century Modern beauty that we obviously use for BID parties and for some storage too :)

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 Grab yourselves a bouquet of some orange lilies or gerber daisies this summer and enjoy what we have going on in July! xx





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What used to be so “unheard of” in both design and fashion was the mixing of metals–either you did silver or gold. Not both. These days-thankfully and finally- I am spying a turning of the tides and a generous dose of mixing metals. To me the mixing of unexpected pairings is what keeps things interesting and unique.

Speaking of interesting, how about a dose of gold sprinkled here and there in your next home project? I love, love, love adding in a gold element within my design projects. The metallic and luminescent qualities of gold adds an instant element of luxury and warmth.

In my Buckingham Interiors + Design Showroom in Chicago, we have these fabulous pillows from Pyar and Co shown here on this equally fab Adrian Pearsall mid-century sofa. These soft, cotton-linen pillows feature hand-block-prints in metallic gold foil. I especially love the whimsy of the gold foil kites! How about our gold metallic ostrich eggs :)

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Another pillow line that we share within the Showroom is Kari Fisher Designs. Kari specializes in contemporary hand blocked textiles. The process begins with high quality solid white or natural linen. Inspired by design history and traditional printing methods, she designs each pattern thoughtfully and carves each block by hand in her home studio in Atlanta, GA. Each step of the process is completed by Kari herself. My favorite,  of course, is the gold!! Love this hand-blocked chevron print!!

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While at High Point Market this past Spring, gold was all the rage! Natural Curiosities had some AH-mazing gold art like these “Wings of Love”, “German Krystalle”, “Cartier Heart Strings” and the “Gilded Arrow”.

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While I love the simplicity of gold and white…I am also obsessed with incorporating gold with bright hues like orange, my fave! Loving this “Sunset” series.

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Tommy Mitchell also has these gorgeous gilded gold accent tables….one was just delivered to a client’s home in Michigan on Monday while I was there for an installation!!

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I am ga ga over gold in wallpaper….

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My Design Director is expecting TWIN boys any day now…can we just stop and admire this adorable nursery she designed with the gold stars??!?


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And- oh my- lets not forget about the tried and true power of gold in jewelry and fashion!

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Anything when given a gold makeover just automatically ups it’s luxury meter. Gilded gold bath tub? Um, yes.

Who isn’t sporting something gold at this very minute?! Sparkle away y’all!

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It’s no secret that I love color. Color is a huge part of my design process as color for me is synonymous with the word emotion. No color is off limits! It can often be challenging…how do you choose the “right” color for the space?

Thanks to Traditional Home magazine, fear color no more! Please join me and my uber talented crew of fellow designers for the Traditional Home Color Master Class! We will all be sharing our tips and tricks for incorporating color into your home. Every week for 12 weeks, you will receive an email with ideas of how to decorate with color–from rich hues to soft neutrals, and even how to decorate seasonally throughout the year!

MasterClass

 

Best of all, all the tips are FREE! They will not be published in the magazine, so be sure to sign up for the master class today!

Color me HAPPY! xx

TradHomecoverJune AM

 





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Currently at my Buckingham Interiors + Design Studio in Chicago, I am thrilled to be displaying the photographic work of my talented and dear friend Chicago-based photographer, Maggie Meiners. On display through mid-June are works from her series “i hear with my eyes”. You just have to see her pieces up close and personal in order to really capture their graphic, simple and yet captivating photographic message.

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In Maggie’s words:

“I felt isolated as a kid. I’ve always assumed that it was because of the profound hearing loss I developed as a result of continuous ear infections and subsequent surgeries. Not being able to hear made me feel left out—of the conversation, of the gossip, of the joke. To make sense of my silenced world, I tried to find ways to compensate while proving to myself that I belonged.  Visual cues provided that bridge.  Lip reading, body language, gestures, the clothes people wore and the objects with which they surrounded themselves were like pieces of a puzzle. I continue to rely on these cues to help make sense of the world from which I came and of which I am still a part.

While my state-of-the-art hearing aids capture sound, I still rely heavily on the visual world for clarification and direction.  This body of work encompasses the various visual cues that, like totems, certify my sense of belonging.  Whether it is a father and son walking together or people playing cards, I feel connected by these components, using them as signposts to point me in the direction of self in concert with the world in which I find myself.”

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A few of my fave images…and titles….

“Cocktail Costumes”

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“Cut from the Same Cloth”

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and of course “Chanel”!!

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 We are taking some of Maggie’s pieces to a client installation today..more on that to be featured soon in the summer issue of Sheridan Road Magazine!





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Choosing the right fabric for a room is so important in the design process….It’s all about choosing the right color and the right texture. Now, with all the innovations in wallpaper, the walls are another great “fabric” to choose! Whether it is a subtle wallpaper adding in texture, or a patterned piece making the statement for the room, or even BOTH color and pattern for an even bigger “WOW” factor, wallpaper that used to get a bad rap as being “outdated” is now cooler than ever and definitely here to stay!

Here are a few favorites from Elitis with great colors, patterns, and dimension….

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And a touch of elegance and glammy glimmer….

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Pierre Frey also offers some fabulous wallpapers….I’m loving the exotic charm of this print with elephants, lions, and my fave- peacocks! Visiting the private home of Vincent Frey while in Paris last year for a small dinner party, I spied some gorgeous fabrics…no surprises there :)

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And of course I can’t forget a crown print like this one from Rubelli!

A flock-on-flock printing technique  allows imitation of the typical 3D appearance of Venetian two-heights velvet, where the pattern is created by the two different heights of the pile. Gorgeous!

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Although I’m totally in love with the white brick walls of my  Buckingham Interiors + Design Showroom in Chicago, I am equally obsessed with the spaces I was able to wallpaper!

This Fornasetti wallpaper from Cole & Son  in my own office adds amazing depth and movement… Thank you Lee Jofa!

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While this Malachite wallpaper also from Cole & Son in our powder room keeps the neutral grey palette interesting- and never dull!

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So whether it is a great geometric print in a hallway like this one from a downtown Chicago renovation project….

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Or a vibrant dragon print (This fab one is from Schumacher) off of a bedroom in a young girls sitting room….

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…..I never miss an opportunity to add an eye-catching wallpaper to a space!! After all, with the incredible options in wallpaper now, how can I resist?!?! xx





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It’s amazing to see that what used to be a dreaded growing out phase of hair color and roots is now the “IT” trend literally EVERYWHERE! From hair and nails,   to interior design and the home accessory craze, it is all about OMBRE.

If y’all watched the Academy Award season, you couldn’t miss actor Jared Leto and his long ombre locks. Or Hollywood reality star turned fashion designer Lauren Conrad who seems to have started the trend. Or Bachelor contestest, soon-to-be The Bachelorette, Andi, who famously said “See ya!” to Juan Pablo while rocking her brunette ombre tresses.

Nail polish too–whether it be gradual variations on each nail or on each hand, or given the ombre effect with glitter–have jumped onto this trend’s bandwagon.

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Design has seen its share of ombre too. It’s so fun to search and find a plethora of projects and everyone’s individual take on this look. Here are a few of my faves.

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Ombre walls…..

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Furniture….

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and bathroom tiles!

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We currently have some cool ombre pieces in our Buckingham Interiors + Design Showroom in Chicago too! On our dining table we feature these cool blue-green ombre tapered vases from Global Views

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and this fabulous Kelly Wearstler rug from The Rug Company, appropriately named…ummm.. “Ombre” d’accord!

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There are fabulous new introductions in fabric too that we are loving like this one from Beacon Hill….

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Lighting has not been spared from this trend at all.  This “Flamingo” chandelier from Currey and Company is amazing in all of it’s color washed glory!

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Even food has jumped on the ombre bandwagon. Ombre donuts? YES PLEASE!!

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Goes to show, pretty much anything can be given an ombre makeover. Looks like this trend is here to stay…at least till the next big craze- of which I have quite a few ideas!





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The gorgeous tall ceilings and pristine white brick walls of our Buckingham Interiors + Design Showroom are the perfect canvas for showcasing the talented work of Chicago artists and artists nationwide.  We’ve been proud to showcase work in the past of the talented Linc Thelen, Richard Shipps, and Lynn Basa to name a few!

 
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“Jellyfish” and “Grid Study” by Linc Thelen

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“Evolution” by Linc Thelen

We are absolutely honored to be featuring the work of the amazing artist Amy Cannady in our new Spring art exhibition!

In Amy’s artwork, tensions and serenities coexist, inviting the viewer to consider life’s mysteries and ambiguities.

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“I Stood in Awe” by Amy Cannady

Through a reduction and layering process Amy allows line and form to emerge, disappearing again into obscurity. There is a deep sense of time and space. Painting is a language, and Amy Cannady’s has been described as a form of “Glossolalia.” The viewer is invited to ponder that something has happened, is happening, or is about to happen. She intentionally seeks no control, but looks for the possibilities in the paint and the painting process.

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 “How We Do It” by Amy Cannady

The artist shares, “There will surely be different interpretations of that which is seen in my work!

I hope this acknowledges the pluralistic world we live in and that a painting may be a point for open dialogue.”

 Cannady holds a BFA from Southern Methodist University, where she also completed postgraduate studies in Art. In recent years Amy has lived and painted in Santa Fe, Florida, and the Midwest, She currently resides in Dallas, Texas, also the location of her studio. Her work is in private and corporate collections throughout The Americas and Europe. She is currently represented in Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, and Nashville. We were fortunate to feature a collection of her paintings in collaboration with KM Fine Arts in Chicago.

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“In Full Regalia” by Amy Cannady

Can’t help but stare at this beautiful piece as I walk through the showroom…Gorgeous!

A collection of Amy’s paintings are currently on display at our Modernique showroom through Mid-June.

Be sure to stop by 1822 W. Grand and check it out, as well as much, much more…

And stay tuned for our next featured Artist!

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“The Approach to Perfection” by Amy Cannady

Looks pretty perfect to us!!

 

 





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How adorable is this water coloring rendering of the Hermes La Maison home line?

I discovered the new Hermes La Maison home line when our wonderful Dedar rep came to our showroom and offices at the end of last year, sharing with us the most amazing textiles and wall coverings from this iconic brand. Now, it is not enough to swoon over their fashionable bags, scarves, throws, clothing, boots, sandals, watches (of which I am a huge fan) and baubles-more delightful goodies to ponder!

It wasn’t long after that I decided to recover an antique French chair in the Fil de Argents print (yes, I have a slight thing for chains) in the orange color way (I also have a slight orange thing, too).  This chair made its way to a recently completed Arizona design project, but my obsession with the Hermes home line had only just begun.

Not only does the Hermes La Maison collection include textiles and wall coverings, it includes furniture and rugs as well (obviously of the ultra luxurious sort).  I do not know the exact prices of all the items, but knowing the price point of Hermes,  I can only imagine how many zeroes follow that leather sofa…

Take a look at some of my favorites from the collection!

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3-seater Bench from The Pippa Collection

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Square Table from The Pippa Collection

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Occasional Table from The Pippa Collection

A bit about The Pippa Collection…

“This line of foldable and easy-to-move-around furniture was imagined by Rena Dumas and Peter Coles, in the Hermès spirit of “moving with elegance”. It combines the warmth and softness of wood (pearwood, ebonized maple or teak) with the suppleness and resilience of leather (fontanella cowhide, natural cowhide, clemence bullcalf, skipper buffalo).”

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Armchair for Reading and Resting in Fabric and Leather, from The Matieres Collection

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Fabric and Leather Sofa from The Matieres Collection

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Storage Coffer from The Matieres Collection

A bit about The Matieres Collection…

“In the Matières collection, Antonio Citterio highlighted once more the functionality of furniture, and prioritized conviviality, comfort and harmony. This collection also emphasizes the sensory of the materials: leather, fabric, wood, metal.
During his visit to the Hermès Conservatory of Creations, the designer was particularly drawn to a saddle rack whose proportions and volume inspired him for the design of his armrests. The reading chair reclines into a relaxation position.”

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2-seater Sofa from The Jean Michele Frank Collection

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Club Armchair in Sheepskin from The Jean Michele Frank Collection…swooning…..

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Folding Screen from The Jean Michele Frank Collection

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Low Soleil Table from The Jean Michele Frank Collection

A bit about The Jean Michele Frank Collection…

“Jean-Michel Frank is an iconic designer from the Art Deco movement. He was the most influentialial designer and decorator of the 1920′s and 1930′s. The lines are rigorous and emphasized, shapes are simple yet refined. The materials used are versatile, from the rawest to the most sophisticated.
Sofas are compact, well-balanced and truly simple, iconic of Frank’s style.”

 

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 Antique French Gilt Armchair that I recovered in Hermes Fil de Argent fabric!

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One of my favorite wall coverings from the collection- Les Sangles

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A panel of this wall covering within picture frame molding- genius!

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Stunning scarf-like textile, Couvertures et Tenues de Jour

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How fabulous are these drapes?

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Circuit 24 Textile

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More gorgeous drapery!

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I love the Circuit 24 pattern in the wall covering, too!

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Finish Wall Covering in Nattier Blue

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Finish Wall Covering in Kaolin

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Herringbone Wall Covering in Orange

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Herringbone Wall Covering in Nattier Blue

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Gribouill’H Wall Covering in Sage

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Gribouill’H Wall Covering in Mandarin

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Feuillage Imprime Textile in Etoupe

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Feuillage Imprime Wall Covering in Mint

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Wrapping presents in Hermes paper?  Doesn’t get more luxe than that!

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Biblioteque Wall Covering in Nattier Blue- I used this in the bathroom of my Arizona design project!

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Also love this pattern in the textile version (Biblioteque in Cognac)

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Biblioteque Textile in Indigo

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