Decorating a home can be a daunting task. It is an organic blend of practical decisions and emotional reactions to textures, colors and furnishings. How does one make sense of it all? Well, there is no one recipe that fits all but for me, the best decorating happens when rules are forgone in favor of things cherished, collected and personally meaningful. It is the case of some of my favorite homes – Bee Cottage designed by Tom Samet and Frances Schultz, the Mill Valley home of Blythe Harris and family, decorated by Rita Konig and, it is certainly the case of this vibrant Victorian sea-captain’s cottage in Port Townsend, Washington. With magnificent vistas overlooking Admiralty Inlet, the house is one of interior designer Markham Roberts and his partner, furniture and art dealer James Sansum’s three homes. It is also one of their most personal ones, and my favorite designed by Roberts. It was included in Markham Roberts’ book Decorating: The Way I See It (published by Vendome in 2014) and, more recently, it was featured in The Seattle Times and in Cabana Magazine’s Fall/Winter 2017 issue.?
“Old, cottage-y rugs and painted Victorian furniture were all thrown together, and the result is what I call “relaxed”, in that we’re not really going all out to decorate. The bedrooms, too, are a crazy mixture of old-fashioned patterns and odd pieces of furniture, charming in an old summer cottage way.”
The house has been in Sansum’s family since the 70s and it still represents a cherished summer escape. The first thing that comes to mind when looking at these images is the feeling of freedom and ease. There’s a sense of comfort that transpires these colorful rooms. It is difficult to replicate also, which is where lies the immense talent of interior designer Markham Roberts and his ability to harmoniously marry bold hues, classic patterns and different styles. Family heirlooms and beautiful one-of-a-kind pieces collected over the years fill this home, it is pure joy to study every room and each cranny!?
Happy July, everyone! Can you believe it’s almost mid-summer? Between our move to New England and the stress of settling into our new place (sans furniture for a few more days), writing about beautiful homes provides a much needed escape.?Like so many of you, I’ve been a long time admirer of decorator Markham Roberts and his work. Architectural Digest features in its current issue a charming Nantucket home designed by Roberts that is stunning in every way (colorful, happy, light and layered). I wrote about it HERE if you’d like to check it out.
For today’s post I thought I’d revisit with you one of his older projects. Chances are you’ve seen this one before but something tells me you won’t mind seeing it again. The house is in Nashville, Tennessee and was built in the early 1900s. A love of historic American architecture guided the entire process. Although everything was gutted, except the facade, the interiors were reimagined in. away that still feels appropriate for a century-old house. One of the remarkable things about this project is that the owners already had a wonderful collection of family heirlooms from their childhood home that was designed by none other than Roberts’ mentor, Mark Hampton.?This gave Roberts the unique opportunity to reimagine pieces once used by Hampton in new and fresh environments. The result is a beautiful home, filled with color, youthful but with an old soul. It’s truly inspiring!?The images and captions bellow are from?House Beautiful. Photography by Thomas?Loof.
I nearly fell off my chair when I first saw a glimpse of this Nantucket home designed by Markham Roberts!! Architectural Digest published a tour in its latest issue and I’m thrilled to see something so charming and warm, and old-school-pretty, in its pages. Markham Roberts is an incredibly talented designer and his work has always received the highest of praises.? In this particular instance, his decorating touch is more playful and happier than usual, you can just tell he had a great time designing this home. On some level, it reminds me a little of Woody House, in that all rules are broken, with excellent results! Enjoy!?
On a side note, I apologize for being late with my replies during the last couple of weeks, here and on Instagram. My mom is visiting us until tomorrow and I tried to spend as much time with her as possible – we talked and debated for hours, laughed and went shopping, antiquing and sight-seeing all over Chicago. It’s also the end of the school year and there’s so much to do… As a result, I’m beat but happy, and have had less time for?my social media…I still read and appreciate all of your messages but had a harder time replying to all. Thanks for understanding!
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I hope you’ve all had a peaceful holiday weekend! We had a great couple of days, enjoyed some sweet family time as well as entertaining with friends. The temperatures are now in the mid 70s, tulips and lilacs are in full bloom and our entire neighborhood smells divine. Don’t you just love Spring?
For today’s design post, I have in mind a beautiful mountain lodge set in Big Sky, Montana that is all about nature. Designed by architect Paul Bertelli and decorator Markham Roberts, the home is a sophisticated holiday retreat that is cozy and comfortable without the usual rustic clichés. Weathered wood, native stones and breathtaking vistas blend seamlessly with chic fabrics and bespoke furnishings. The result is one of the most beautiful mountain homes I’ve ever seen!
Next to blue, green is one of those colors so many of us love, and for good reason! On that note, this layered Southampton living room designed by Markham Roberts has been on my mind this week. It feels fresh and vibrant, without it being overwhelming. The main color story is dictated by a pleasant green repeated on the upholsteries and greenery, grounded with natural wood tones and honey-hued sisal.