Part of my book collection is devoted to old home and garden magazine anthologies like those published by House & Garden and Architectural Digest. If you're interested in old interiors, these books really give you a good sense of what was happening in interior design in, say, the 1960s or the early 1980s. My only complaint about some of these books is that quite often there will be a photo of an interior that really piques your interest, but you're denied seeing the rest of the room or home because only one paltry photo was included in the book. You're left wanting more, and yet there is no more to get, at least not in that particular book anyway.
As I have mentioned before, the 1967 edition of House & Garden Guide to Interior Decoration (the British edition), is one of these old books that has inspired me lately. Edited by Robert Harling, the book's compilation of photos includes wild-looking London flats, elegant French chateaux, and swank American apartments. It also includes a smattering of photos of prominent showrooms and shops. I managed to find two photos of showroom vignettes done by Colefax & Fowler as well as two black and white photos of the late Geoffrey Bennison's Pimlico Road shop. I know that many of you are fans of both, so I figured I would show you what I could find. I wish it were more than four photos, but you know how uncooperative those old books can be sometimes.
Image at top: What was referred to as a "show setting" by Michael Raymond of Colefax & Fowler. The term makes me think this was not installed in the Brook Street showroom. Very swinging, don't you think? I do like the faux tortoise walls. It looks to me like Raymond used carpet to upholster the backs of the sofas. It might have even been used on the right-hand wall, too.
The caption that accompanied this photo clearly states this vignette was located in Colefax & Fowler's Brook Street showroom. Call me crazy, but I like that patchwork table cloth.
Geoffrey Bennison's Pimlico Road showroom. An 18th century English portrait hung above a Louis XV walnut desk.
Another view of Bennison's shop, which really must have been quite exciting to visit.
All photos from House & Garden Guide to Interior Decoration, 1967, edited by Robert Harling. The book can be hard to find, so searching around the internet is advised.