To say that I’m a fan of architect Gil Schafer and his work is an understatement. It is impossible not to admire his reverence to the past, his love of classical architecture and the freshness that he brings to each project. Middlefield, his country home in Dutchess County, New York is one the most beautiful we’ve seen built in recent years yet it feels like it’s been there for centuries. That’s the thing about Mr. Schafer’s work, he makes the new feel old again – a rare quality among architects. I wrote a blog post about Middlefield and its interiors HERE, but if you look carefully you’ll realize that the gardens outside play an equally important role in the home’s architecture. For example, the doors and windows are aligned so that the views of the gardens are accessible from every room. The entire house is designed with the outdoors in mind, and for good reason. Set on a 45-acre property, the home was built on a 6-acre open field surrounded by wooded hills with spectacular views.?
It is always a great pleasure to discover hidden gems, be it on the web, in a new decorating book or an old magazine. I make it a point to buy vintage design magazines whenever I find them and I was lucky to discover a stack at a garage sale in our neighborhood one weekend.? In it, and earmarked no less, was a gorgeous Belgian country home that I’ve only seen images of the exterior before. The outside is gorgeous but it looks even more delightful on the inside.? Maybe many of you have seen it and remember it. It’s the country home (and by that, I mean castle) of Belgian fashion designer édouard Vermeulen. It is so beautiful that I needed to find out more. Vermeulen’s fashion label, Natan, dresses the royal families of Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg and he has been recently? awarded the title of baron by Belgian king Philippe.?The images below are from Homes and Gardens, UK 2005.
Happy weekend! I hope you’re enjoying some R&R wherever you are! I know many of you love the work of Chicago-based designer Shelley Johnstone so I thought I’d share with you images of her awesome backyard as seen in last month’s House Beautiful and more recently on Tory Daily. It’s dreamy! Set on an acre cul-de-sac property in Lake Forrest, Illinois, the backyard ?design was inspired by summers on the fashionable Isle of Capri. Johnstone wanted to create a garden escape for her family and friends and she used her favorite Capri hotel, La Fontelina, as inspiration. Dozens of pink towels, fresh flowers everywhere, beautiful china and delicate floral tablecloths… the pool and its surroundings are an ode to summertime!
If you’ve been following L.A.-based designer Mark D. Sikes on Instagram, you might have seen glimpses of his newly decorated home. It’s no secret that I admire Mark and his talent, not only as a decorator but as an amazing businessman. Everything he touches is a success. From his interior design business to his fashion line and product collaborations, his work never ceases to inspire. Last year he mentioned that he was redecorating his already perfect Hollywood Hills home and I’ve been anxiously awaiting the reveal. I think it will be published in a major magazine but one space that is fully shown on his Instagram is his pretty patio. So, I thought it would be fun to follow the amazing evolution of this space over the years.
The patio now?
During this long and relaxing holiday weekend, my Instagram feed exploded with beautiful images of quintessential American homes in some of my favorite locations. Nantucket is one of those places that, although I’ve not seen much of, I feel a special connection to. It is difficult to find a Nantucket home that isn’t charming so it ’s no surprise that this cottage by the sea is one of the most photographed homes in America. I’ve long admired its rose-covered exterior and was wondering how much prettier it could be on the inside.?
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