Wednesday, October 03, 2007

The Classics II

A continuation of my series on classic design. See The Classics I for further reading.

The Saladino Lamp

Designed by John Saladino, this lamp is so simple and so perfect. And the fact that it has been in production for over 30 years just goes to show that many times it's the simple things, and the simple designs, that have staying power.

Le Creuset Dutch Oven

Not only is this Dutch (or French) oven stylish, it is the perfect vessel for beef bourguignonne and winter stews. And what's more timeless than the orange Flame color?

The Parsons Table

Legend has it that the Parsons table was conceived by students at the Parsons School of Design in Paris and their lecturer Jean-Michel Frank. Again, another simple design. This Parsons side table, available at Apsara Interior, was from the estate of saloon singer Bobby Short.

"Bowood" print

Discovered by John Fowler at Bowood House in the 1950s, this charming chintz is one of Colefax & Fowler's most popular and enduring prints.

"Blue Canton" China

This Mottahedeh pattern, inspired by blue and white Chinese Canton ware, is so versatile. The bonus? You can wash it in the dishwasher!

"Chou Chou" print

This classic Sister Parish design is available in both wallpaper and fabric. A tasteful way of injecting some pizzazz into a room.

"The House in Good Taste"

The Elsie de Wolfe book that has inspired generations of designers (and ghost written by Ruby Ross Wood).


  1. Nice selection! I am putting the Le Crueset on my Christmas wish list.

  2. Thanks Fairfax!

    Brilliant- I have one in orange and I LOVE it. Some people don't like the orange and say it's too retro looking, but all of my Le Creuset is orange :)

  3. Anonymous12:47 PM

    Re the Parsons table ... It's not legend ... I have been in the Parsons archives and there is indeed information attesting to the development of the Parsons table, which developed out of conversations between Frank and the students of the Parsons program in Paris in the mid to late 1930s. An unpublished oral history interview with Stanley Barrows, later a professor emeritus at Parsons who was in that very Paris program as a student, nails the history down. The concept, he said, was the develop a table whose modernist design integrity would remain intact no matter what material the table was finished in. Barrows further stated that once the students successfully collaborated on the table, the prototype was made by the Parsons school janitor and later put on display in a student exhibition.

  4. Anon - quit hiding - you are a weath of information! We won't stalk you, we promise.

    Jennifer - the Le Crueset is also on my Christmas list - they have a jazzy new turquoise-ish that I can't wait to get on my cook top.

  5. I second your nomination of the creuset (in flame, of course). I decided to splurge on the large dutch oven last year and I have not ever regretted it. It makes everything turn out fabulously!

  6. A very chic round-up! (I like the orange too :)

  7. Anon- Occasionally I have read that Van Day Truex was responsible for the design, but that doesn't sound right. I guess some people associated him with the Parsons table b/c he taught at the Paris program???

  8. Patricia- that turquoise sounds snazzy!

    So Bon Vivant- I know- isn't it great?? You don't have to be a good cook to use it and get great results.

  9. Anonymous4:57 PM

    I believe Crate and Barrel sells a version of the Saladino lamp.


  10. PT- I may need to go check that out! Thanks :)

  11. I have always wanted that Saladino lamp! And I have more than one Parsons table (one in steel with a stone top, another wood.) Always a classic. I had heard that about Van Day Truex as well!

  12. Katie- Your tables sound tres chic!

  13. All classics, but I am partial to the Parson's table (did not know the history, so THANKS!) and the saladino lamp will never date.

  14. I love the classics and hope that one of my designs will become a staple in homes across the globe for years to come.

  15. maurice12:27 PM

    I have two SALADINO lamps,he did two versions one for pottery barn and yes it had a hang tag with his name on it: less expensive... they did not sell well to the "unwashed masses" and the version still sold by his company.I think its one of the most "blendable" table lamps made.The parsons table is a doubtless classic in all its permutations.

  16. Maurice- I remember about 10 years ago (?) seeing a bunch of them at the Pottery Barn outlet- unfortunately many of them were damaged, but it was obvious they didn't sell well. Too bad.