I've been thinking about something a lot lately (and yes, that may come as a shock to some of you...). The look that I gravitate to is the undecorated look. I'm not crazy about rooms that are too perfect and too pristine. That's not to say that I'm a fan of rooms that seem a jumble. But I prefer rooms that look as though they evolved over time. They just seem a lot richer and well, much more interesting.
I've also noticed that some of my favorite homes are those of designers. I believe that some of their best work can be found in their own domiciles. Of course, designers use their homes as laboratories, and sometimes it's easier to take risks in one's own home. But here's what I'm wondering: do designers really have a master plan when it comes to their own homes? You know the old adage "the shoemaker's children are often shoeless". Well, I know that many decorators are so busy that sometimes it's hard for them to tackle the design of their own homes, and this might force them to take a more organic approach.
So where am I going with all of this? I wonder if design schemes might sometimes get in the way of great decorating? Obviously if you're a designer, you can't just wing it with a client. You have to have a plan so that the customer knows what he or she will be getting. And, there are certain things that absolutely have to be planned for. I'm not saying that plans and schemes should be abandoned. Hardly. But, do you think that the best design happens when the process evolves over a longer period of time and when it lacks a firm game plan, something that might at times prove to be a constraint?
Who isn't inspired by Albert Hadley's apartment? Do we ever tire of seeing it? No, we don't. (This version is c. 1990)
We're in the midst of another Rose Cumming revival- and I think that's a good thing. Was there ever a more unique- and eccentric- home than that of Cumming?
I think Miles Redd's home is the most blogged about home in the last few years- and with good reason.
Frances Elkins decorated some very grand homes, but I find her homes, especially her Monterey, CA home, to be some of her best work.
In "Keith Irvine: A Life in Decoration", some of the prettiest photos are those of the ballroom wing of Irvine's country home.
Image at top: Do you think William Pahlmann took his sweet time decorating his home?