Archive for February, 2007


Lara Collects

Drove through snow, freezing rain and a lightning storm (!) on Saturday to get to Lara and Frank’s (and Lucy and Zoe’s) house for Movie Night. (Here in Indiana you can’t afford to let winter weather keep you from living your life.)

Our movie night selections tend toward the semi-obscure, thoughtful and fun films. This time it was Hedwig and the Angry Inch. Since Hedwig spends time in East Berlin as well as a Kansas trailer park, sources for food inspiration were plentiful. Susan brought meatless meatballs that were excellent and won the award for most ironic appetizer.

Lara and I worked together at the Indianapolis Museum of Art. She is smart, fun and very stylish. Her home is lovely and I’ll post pictures of it someday, but this time around I had to show you her snowglobe collection.


Well part of it anyway, there’s actually another wall of them.


I keep meaning to ask Lara about this one with the woman in flames (in a snow globe–tee hee) and chains. Every time I’m there I end up looking at it for a long time and then forget to ask Lara where it came from.

Frequently home collections made up of things like snowglobes show up in more random or haphazard interiors, but Lara is a highly ordered person, which came in very handy when we worked together. Here’s one picture (of a kickin’ etagere) to prove that Lara and Frank’s primary decorative impulse isn’t wacky Fun House…



In Praise of Small Spaces

More from Wood’s book on Nancy Lancaster.

Small bedroom

I love small bedrooms. Maybe not as small as the one above, though I would love to sleep here if I were traveling alone. It’s handsome and handy at the same time.

I totally get largish closets, but I’ve never understood the need for a ton of floor space in a bedroom. Am I not making the invitation lists for parties people are hosting in their huge bedrooms? (Miles Redd has been known to host dinners in his bathroom, but with a space like this (scroll down once you get to the page), who can blame him?).

In my opinion, small does not exclude comfort. In fact, comfort is typically an issue of convenience, and those problems are usually best solved by having things closer to you rather than farther away; also how the senses are cared for–the feel, the look, the smell. For my money, keep the floor space–give me good sheets, towels, a few nice rugs, a good mattress, a couple of decently upholstered chairs and if I were really splurging, a kickin’ TV. As long as my behind isn’t knocking things over when I turn around I feel like I have enough space.

Having said all of this, I should confess that I don’t like our bedroom at the moment (too big, among other problems). And bedroom design is not my strong point (yet). More on that topic later. Do you like your bedroom? Have you been in one that you loved? What should I be thinking about as we redesign ours?


At WS Home

Dave, Ken and I tromped through the snow for a Williams-Sonoma Home fix. I love this store because even though it is small, the number of chairs that actually feel as smart as they look is impressive.

Once John and I went to Kittles, an “upscale” furniture store here in Indy with a sales floor so large they must measure it in acres. Aside from being exhausted from the walk (we never did find the tram), I sat in fifty chairs and the most comfortable one was a folding metal number near the sales counter.

Dave is a fluffer

This highback mini-sofa (not full length, yet not a love seat either) at WSH was quite nice, however (wish I’d gotten a profile view). It hits you in all the right places. I sat all over it. Dave, good retail guest that he is, fluffed the pillows back up after I squashed them.

As I took this photo the sales person told us about a family that came in at Christmas time. They had someone take their picture in one of their designed room vignettes. She could tell they were going to pass it off as their family’s holiday card (“… such a great year for us.”)

I was horrified that someone would do this. Then I decided Ken and I should have our picture taken in one of their designed vignettes. I chose a couple of chairs (again, SO comfortable) with David Hicks-ish fabric. For effect I picked up a candle holder to sub as a pony glass and closed my eyes to make it look completely candid. No one would believe we weren’t “at home with Ken Paul.”

At home with Ken Paul

The next time friends send you a photo holiday card in which they look suspiciously prosperous you may want to look for the price tags.


Just Enough

Writing Room

I bought Martin Wood’s Nancy Lancaster – English Country House Style with a Barnes and Noble gift certificate Jim and Linda, John’s mom, gave me for my birthday. It has a lot of painted or printed illustrations (I often like these better than photos of interiors–I think the eye creating them sees the space better.).

This is an illustration of a closet at Ditchley Park that Lancaster turned into a writing room. The view from the window was of a lake and part of her garden. Cream and green everything, down to the tiny vases filled with flowers on the riser at the window, creates an uninterrupted connection with the out of doors for the lucky writer at the table.

The flowers and the wacky chair keep things from getting too serious.


Welcome Home

The Back Door

I wanted a place for us to toss around ideas about warm and friendly living spaces. Nothing too formal, mostly about comfort and hospitality. You are always welcome.