Tag Archives: interior

House tour: The secret Paris apartment of Madame de Florian

10 Jan

The story of Madame de Florian’s home seems almost too far-fetched to be true, but the discovery of her glamorous Paris apartment – which has been locked behind closed doors since 1942 – is evidence of a life and style too fabulous to be fiction.

Paris apartment of Madame de Florian time capsule

Abandoned Paris apartment of Madame de Florian

taxidermy in Paris apartment of Madame de Florian

Paris apartment of socialite Madame de Florian 1942

Portrait of Marthe de Florian by Giovanni Boldini

{Getty images via AnOther}

The apartment belonged to Marthe de Florian, an actress and socialite who lived in swirl of fine gowns and love affairs with important men, from Prime Minister Georges Clemenceau to painter Giovanni Boldini, who captured her beauty in the radiant portrait above. She lived in this decadent apartment on the Right Bank with her own portrait in pride of place until she died, leaving her home to her grandaughter, Madame de Florian.

In 1942 at the age of 23, Madame de Florian was forced to flee Paris as the German troops drew ever nearer. She locked the doors and moved to the South of France, never to return, although she continued to pay her service charges until her death at the age of 91. It wasn’t until 2010 that auctioneers opened the doors to the apartment once again and discovered the incredible time capsule that lay gathering dust inside.

Amongst the elegant carved furniture, moth-eaten silks and dulled cut crystal the auctioneer came across Marthe de Florian’s portrait alongside ribbon-bound love letters that confirmed the identity of both the artist and subject, who was only 24 when it was painted. The painting recently sold for an astonishing €2.1 million… the apartment however remains in the hands of the de Florian estate, back behind closed doors and just as it was the day Madame de Florian left.

Ps – If this apartment captivates you too, you must visit Dennis Severs’ House in Folgate Street. It’s the closest you’ll get to the magic of an abandoned home.

New additions to our Collection

18 Oct

I can’t believe how fast this week has gone! We’ve just had time to add a couple of new pieces to our Collection

handmade wooden eating bowl and spoon set £60 Decorator's Notebook

Our beautiful wooden bowl and spoon sets have arrived from the lovely Hatchet & Bear! Each bowl is turned using traditional skills and the spoons are individually carved by hand. EJ gathers different woods each season so we’ll be offering bowls and spoons in a selection of finishes as we go through the year. The latest are made from birch, which has a lovely even grain and rich golden colour enhanced with a rub of linseed oil and beeswax. Buy the wooden bowl and spoon sets here and we also have some gorgeous walnut wood spoons available on their own.

dipped terracotta jug mug and bowl Decorator's Notebook

And secondly, a heartwarming little tale… our popular terracotta mugs and bowls have a new addition to their family! Say hello to the adorable dipped terracotta jug, which is handmade by artisans in India. The pottery is part of a fair trade initiative that trains able-bodied and disabled people from disadvantaged backgrounds and offers them safe and secure employment so they can support their families. The jug has a really lovely handleless design and is just the right size for milk, cream, gravy or sauces. You’ll find all our dipped terracotta pieces here.

There’s a new Decorator’s Notebook Collection Pinterest board too where we’ll be posting new products as soon as they arrive, so do take a look and follow if you like our style.

Have a lovely weekend – I’m going to be working on a little craft project for Lou’s Nature in the Home series which begins again on Wednesday. Pop back then to see my creation!

House tour: open plan loft filled with plants and sunshine

28 Aug

Every now and then, I come across a house that makes me feel content, even just from looking at photographs of it. This open plan loft in Belgium is one of those rare finds… relaxed, personal, fresh and bathed in natural light. I just can’t imagine ever feeling miserable if I came home to an apartment like this one.

light loft apartment with plants

open plan loft apartment

full wall bookshelves

vintage glasses and white bookshelves

Bart Haverkamp and Pieter Croes are the lucky pair who get to live in this airy oasis – they’re garden architects and the lush greenery and skylights in their loft create a real greenhouse vibe. I’m not known for my love of houseplants, but even I’ll admit this open plan space would lose much of its magic without them.

bookshelf in eaves

vintage collection on shelves

house plants

painting on sunny shelf

black dog{all Bart Kiggen for Coffeeklatch}

As much as I’m trying to fight it, I’m clinging onto ways to keep nature inside as summer draws to an end. This little oasis is the perfect inspiration – there’s more to see at the always-inspiring Coffeeklatch.

Join The Room Debate!

9 Aug

Friday again… how time flies when you’re having fun / working your arse off!

Today’s pick for our Room Debate has quite an unusual style so I’m intrigued to know what you make of it. I suppose it’s two rooms really, so there’s double the choice of elements to love or loathe!

If it’s your first time joining in, simply take a good look at the photo below then head to the comments with your answers to these two questions:

One thing I like most about this room is…

One thing I like least about this room is…

open plan living room and dining room Lizzie Orme for Style at Home{Lizzie Orme for Style at Home}

Have fun debating guys and I wish you all the loveliest of weekends. See you in the comments!

House tour: relaxed vintage style in the Finnish countryside

8 Aug

Last week the lovely Soile from Ada & Ina emailed me some photos of her pretty Finnish home and asked if I’d like to feature it on Decorator’s Notebook. One look and the answer was most certainly yes!

vintage bicycle finland ada and ina

scandinavian dining room with linen blind ada and ina

50s dresser ada and ina

white scandi kitchen ada and ina

Soile and Sami’s wooden house was built in the 1950s and I love how they’ve mixed original features with vintage finds and the odd piece of IKEA to give it a restful feel. Soile makes and sells curtains and blinds from natural fabrics so she’s used touches of textured linen soften the obligatory Scandinavian white palette.

scandinavian living room ideas

vintage retro armchair and wall art ada and ina

white scandinavian living room ada and ina

vintage wall art ada and ina

Last time I saw a horse harness on the wall it was in an old country pub next to a scraggy stuffed fox. Isn’t it amazing how a change of context can make something look stylish all of a sudden! Framing pretty pieces of cutlery and an old pocket watch is a lovely way to make a feature of vintage finds that might otherwise get lost in a drawer.

white scandinavian hallway ada and ina

framed cutlery and pocketwatch ada and ina

wooden stairs painted white and grey ada and ina

midcentury furniture in bedroom ada and ina

vintage sledge in Finland ada and ina{all Ada & Ina}

During the summer months I’d love to live here – but the crumbling sledge in the garden is a reminder that it’s not always light and bright in Turku! Thanks again Soile for sharing your lovely home… we love seeing inside your homes so do get in touch with your pictures!

Join The Room Debate!

19 Jul

Happy Friday everyone! I hope this light and airy room captures the mood of the moment for you and has plenty of elements to discuss for The Room Debate today.

Everyone’s welcome to join in of course. If it’s your first time, simply take a good look at the photo below then head to the comments with your answers to these two questions:

One thing I like most about this room is…

One thing I like least about this room is…

white vintage living room

There are plenty of things to love about this room for me… but a couple of things that irritate me too! Looking forward to hearing what you think…

Have a lovely weekend – I’m off to Art in Action in Oxford and really looking forward to it.

Apple crates as kitchen shelves. Nice.

17 Jun

Even though I love the rustic look, kitchens made entirely from reclaimed wood are too much for me, so I am very much appreciating this best-of-both combo.

white kitchen with open shelves made from crates{via Style at Home}

Also very much appreciating the use of cactus and stuffed ferret.

The seven ingredients of a perfect guest bedroom

3 Jun

country style guest bedroom{via Danse de Lune}

I think that the day I’m able to afford a home with the luxury of a guest bedroom is the day I’ll properly feel like a grown-up. That, and a downstairs loo. Anyway, I was browsing my beautiful bedrooms Pinterest board recently and realised how many of the photos I’d given the title ‘perfect guest bedroom’ … and that got me thinking. How do you create a space for visitors that feels like a real home from home?

fresh garden flowers in bedroom{via Curated Style}

When I go home for the weekend my Mum always puts a vase of flowers from the garden in my room. It’s such a small but thoughtful gesture and always makes me feel extra special. Shop bought flowers will do too of course, but there’s something about the casualness of a homegrown posy that makes me feel especially welcome.
Allocating space as a dedicated guest room is a luxury most of us don’t have, but it’s still possible to give your friends and family a little nook of their own even if the room has another function – like a home office or storage – the rest of the time. Hang a panel curtain from the ceiling or invest in a folding screen to give your visitors a small private area of the room.
It’s always nice to be able to unpack your bag when you go to stay, so try to provide a little space to hang clothes if you possibly can. A few hooks on the back of the door and some wooden hangers is enough… these ones are made from a collection of pretty drawer handles screwed into a piece of wood.
calm grey bedroom with hanging bedside light{via Griege}
Ever stubbed your toe finding your way back from the loo in an unfamiliar house? Spare you visitors the agony by popping a simple lamp next to the bed. If you don’t have room for a table lamp, consider a space-saving wall light or hanging bulb instead.
This one’s very dormitory chic, but I love the idea of fitting a washbasin in the corner if you have the space. There are loads of incredibly compact options, even some that will easily fit inside a fitted wardrobe. Look for teeny tiny wall mounted basins designed for downstairs cloakrooms.
I’m a total fuss pot when it comes to my bed – I like a nest of duvets and blankets wrapped around my body but my head always on the cold side of the pillow. Most people have their own picky preferences so the only way around this is to offer several bedlinen and blanket layers they can add or take away as they like.
Warning! Only consider this one if you really like your guests… bringing up a cup of tea first thing is sure to earn you the accolade of perfect host and you run the risk they’ll want to stay forever!
Do you enjoy preparing for visitors or do you find it a chore? How do you make guests feel extra special?

A pretty bedroom (sage and gorse again)

22 May

sage and yellow vintage bedroom ideas{Sean Fennessy for The Design Files}

I still can’t get enough of this colour combo so this delicate bedroom scheme immediately caught my eye. There’s more of this vintage-inspired home at The Design Files.

My blogging view (out with the old, in with the new)

15 Apr

Times are changing. My flat is getting a new owner. I hope she will like it here but it will be hard to say goodbye to this little place of mine. I always sit and write my blog in the same spot on the sofa and this is what I see. I will miss this view. It always looks so pretty in the early evening light.

tulip table with flowers

daffodils and hydrangeas

daffodils and hydrangeas{all Decorator’s Notebook}

These dried hydrangeas (liberated from the council flats around the corner) mixed with eucalyptus and pussy willow have served me well all winter. But the daffodils are finally blooming now and it’s time to embrace freshness and newness again. Even when there is brightness on the horizon, leaving the safe and familiar things can still be hard to do.

Just realised how badly the first photo is on the piss. Must get over my annoyance at putting up my tripod :-)

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 6,553 other followers

%d bloggers like this: