I have one of my long-time readers, Mr. Toby Worthington, to thank for this post. For the past few years, we have emailed back and forth about the late Ronald Grimaldi, the man who served for years as the president of Rose Cumming. Shortly after Rose died, Grimaldi was hired by Rose's sister, Eileen, to help run the shop, and Grimaldi's career took off from there.
It was Toby Worthington who told me that Grimaldi's Upper East Side apartment had been published in a 1990's issue of House & Garden. I finally located a copy of the issue (April 1999, by the way), and indeed Grimaldi's apartment was as stylish as Toby had claimed. I think of this apartment as being a great example of old-school decorating- and that is in no way a criticism. Rather, I consider it to be one of the best compliments that I can give! It was a personal apartment, one filled with pieces that Grimaldi had collected through the years. It was layered and luxurious, just as one would expect of the man who presided over Rose Cumming.
Now, I will admit that I'm not crazy about the master bedroom (see below), though that might have something to do with the lighting- a little too harsh. But I really think that the beauty of the apartment is in the details: the lacquered red striped Rose Cumming wallpaper in the entryway; the 1940s black and white linoleum floor, also in the entryway; those wonderful Rose Cumming fabrics; the dining chairs that once belonged to Gloria Vanderbilt; and the Zajac & Callahan pieces that really added zing to the apartment. Even if Grimaldi's look isn't really your thing, I think that if you look closely at the photos, you'll find "things" that will intrigue you.
The living room walls were painted in an apple green shade for a "little punch." The tufted settee and chairs were covered in Rose Cumming fabrics. The tufted chair in the foreground was designed by Zajac & Callahan.
The entryway with its 1940s linoleum floor. (I would absolutely love to have old linoleum floors!) The walls were covered in Rose Cumming's "Band-Box Stripe" that was lacquered.
Another view of the entryway.
The dining table was surrounded by 18th c. Portuguese chairs that were once owned by Gloria Vanderbilt. They were covered in a silk taffeta that had been painted to look like tiger skin. The mirror was by Zajac & Callahan.
Grimaldi's bedroom. The bed was upholstered in a Rose Cumming silk damask while the walls were covered in "Directoire Star" by Rose Cumming.
The guest bedroom featured Rose Cumming's "Sussex", a glazed chintz.
All images from House & Garden, April 1999, Eric Boman photographer.