My Latest Design - Patricia Gray Inc

This is a sneak peak of the family room and eating area for a home that I have recently completed for clients; a Doctor and Lawyer and their two daughters.

Jonathan Adler bowl, faux ostrich ottoman

Painting above sofa Linda Chartier
Painting to left of fireplace Patricia Larsen
Faux ostrich ottoman custom
Patricia Gray Inc
Fireplace Screen handmade wrought iron Patricia Gray Inc
Candlesticks Jamie Young
Sofa Cushions Aviva Stanoff
Photography Roger Brooks
Occassional tables, accessories, faux zebra carpet Peridot


Window Blinds

As an Interior Designer I am always on the lookout for new and unique products. So when I came across these blinds that Suntwist, a French company, is manufacturing I took notice. Leave it to the French to reinvent the wheel for the standard, quite boring horizontal blinds. I normally do not use this form of window covering, but the following are some examples that have really captured my interest.

Sandblasted Acrylic - these would be wonderful in a contemporary setting. I can imagine that the quality of light they let through would be quite amazing.

Faux embossed reptile - How great these would look in a Den.

Leather Look at the detail they put into the grommets

And they are hand stitched on the underneath. A very luxurious window treatment indeed!


Edelman Leather & my 100th Post

This is my 100th post and I wanted to do something special to commemorate this event. When I started blogging, I had no idea where it would lead me. I have met such wonderful people through the experience of blogging and learnt so much in the process. I tried to find a cake with a 100 candles, but instead found this gorgeous yellow cake (continuing on my Yellow kick) with maybe 100 daisies thanks to Sarah Dennis from Toast and Tables. The following is an special interview I had with John Edelman of Edelman Leather fame. I learnt that they pay homage to a few great design Icons of the past in their continuing tradition of excellence.
Edelman Leather Interview with John Edelman, President I understand that Edelman was established in New York in the 50’s, and is still a family run business and that you started out supplying the Fashion Industry. Could you tell us a little about the legacy of your family business? My parents Teddy and Arthur Edelman joined my grandfather’s business in the early 50’s which was called Flemming Joffe (Joffe is my grandfather’s name). At that time they were tanners of reptiles, primarily for the shoe industry. I heard that Andy Warhol did drawings for your company in the 50’s before his rise to fame. Could you share some of how this came about? After a few years of joining the company, my grandfather retired and my parents needed a graphic designer. They put an ad in the New York Times and this nice little guy showed up with white hair. He didn’t talk too much and they liked his work. He was a working graphic artist and was unknown then. He came to work for my parents and that’s why many of his early pieces look like shoes with reptiles. He subsequently went on to become very famous, but this was before he did anything that he is now know for. My parents have a very large collection of Warhol paintings. We still use some of the early pieces he did for us. "This is a Chair" is one of our favourites and has been the theme for our Company since it was created in 1952 or '53.
You are known for your exquisite leather products. What are some of your more exotic products? We work primarily with cow hides which are hand worked and embossed in different patterns and textures. We refer to them as unendangered species and we have over 40 different patterns. A few are: crocodile, ostrich, shagreen, and wild boar. The only “exotic” skin we use is Python. Note by Patricia: Shagreen is a fascinating texture inspired by Jean-Michel Frank. A sharkskin (stingray) grain engraved on vegetable-tanned leather. Why Python? It is not endangered and it is big enough is for upholstery. Usually 30 feet long by 2 1/2 feet wide.
You use Swiss cow hides. How do these compare to other hides? Our cow hides are from Southern Germany and our calf skins are from Switzerland. They are the best in the world. They use no barbed wire, no branding and they even clean the animals off at night to prevent staining. Your leathers are advertised as being “100% GREENGUARD certified”. Could you tell us what that encompasses? We want to be as green as possible. Our product is a by product of the meat industry, so we are actually recycling before we get started. We use all water based finishes and solvents to finish the leather. And all the tanning products are recycled to be used again. Greenguard certifies that we do not have any harmful off gasing which in turn qualifies us for LEED certified jobs. Tell us about this wonderful Crypton finish you are using. I had a demonstration of the cleanabilty of stains on white leather by Matt Buckley, your National Sales Manager, and I was excited that it opens up new ways in which light colored leather products can be used. Most people try to protect their leathers by adding more paint to the finish so it’s less natural. We worked for over 3 years with Crypton. Now Crypton is the leading company for protecting fabrics against stains. We worked with their technicians to develop a formula that impregnates the hide, to stain resist from inside the hide. So we don’t need to add any extra finish, we don’t lose any of the hand at all, but we can repel stains. If it does get a stain on it, you can use our cleaner that we have developed with Crypton. You also have a furniture line. This is a new addition and we really did it as a service for Interior Designers. We picked classic Jean-Michel Frank pieces that were super simple, super clean; what we call ‘a canvas for our leathers’. So it goes back to “This is a Chair”. You take the basic club chair and every product you put on it makes the chair look different. If you put it in red Python it looks one way, if you put it in yellow Ostrich, or Metallic it looks another way. So you said you use classic Jean-Michel Frank pieces. He was Ann Frank’s uncle. He emigrated from Paris to Argentina to escape the Germans. He finally went back to New York when it was safe and did a beautiful apartment for the Rockefeller's and decided that design was dead and jumped off a building with no patents on his work or designs. We found the world’s greatest restorer of his pieces based in Massachusetts who had 30 years of catalogued restoration of his furniture. We had him make us models to the exact specs of the original Jean-Michel Frank pieces. We have 10 pieces in our line. The Upright Chair is an Iconic piece by Jean-Michel Frank - he invented the club chair. We also do a parsons table. He (Jean-Michel Frank) did the Parsons table when he was at Parson’s. It’s not very well documented, but that is what we have learnt. Upright Chair X-tra Bench Parsons Table The following are a few of the Interior Designers that use Edelman leathers in their work. Photos from the Edelman web-site. Vincente Wolf Shrunken Buffalo Orlando Diaz-Azcuy Royal Hide Emma Jane Pilkington House and Garden Nov2005 Royal Hide House Beautiful March 2003 Bunny Williams Royal Suede Robert Passal House and Garden Oct 2005 Royal Hide Steven Gambrell His own home Elle Decor March 2005 Cavellini European Hair on Cowhide Diamond Baratta Elle Decor Custom Royal Hide

Vantullis Interiors Cavellini Exotic Cow Rug


Yellow Sunset

Have you ever seen a yellow sunset? I have seen sunsets all over the world, but never a yellow one. My girlfriend Ann just returned from a 10 day camel safari over the sand dunes in Morocco. I am so envious. It has always been my dream to do this. Have you ever seen the movie Lawrence of Arabia starring Peter O'Toole, riding on a camel through the Arabian desert with the Bedouins? Ever since seeing this movie, I have wanted to be in the middle of the desert on a vast expanse of rolling untouched sand, draped in exotic Bedouin garb, riding on a majestic dromedary camel. Soon.
Sunset in Morocco Ann Ponds

PostScript Dec 13 2007
This is a picture of a yellow sunset in Puget Sound sent to me by Paola


Blogging Statistics

Franki of Life in a Venti cup is off to Vegas for the "Blog World Expo". Imagine a convention devoted entirely to Blogging. And if that is not enough I was amazed to read these statics on the convention's web-site.......

  • Over 12 million American adults currently maintain a blog.
  • More than 147 million Americans use the Internet.
  • Over 57 million Americans read blogs.
  • 1.7 million American adults list making money as one of the reasons they blog.
  • 89% of companies surveyed say they think blogs will be more important in the next five years.
  • 9% of Internet users say they have created blogs .
  • 6% of the entire US adult population has created a blog .
  • Technorati is currently tracking over 70 million blogs .
  • over 120 thousand blogs are created every day .
  • There are over 1.4 million new blog posts every day .
  • 22 of the 100 most popular websites in the world are blogs .
  • 37% of blog readers began reading blogs in 2005 or 2006 .
  • 51% of blog readers shop online .
  • Blog readers average 23 hours online each week .

    The statistic that really captured my attention is that "blog readers average 23 hours online each week". Wow. What do you think of these statistics, and do you think that Blogging is here to stay??

    Photo Patricia Gray


My Marrakesh

My good blogging friend Maryam who writes the delightful blog My Marrakesh is 1 of 10 finalists in the 2007 Annual Weblog Awards. Please check out her beautiful and inspiring blog about all things "Marrakesh".... and please find your way to click here and vote for her Blog " My Marrakesh".
I plan to visit Maryam's little piece of heaven for my birthday next year and hopefully stay with them in their guesthouse Peacock Pavilions which is under construction. It is a magnificent labor of love!!! They have just planted 200 white rose bushes on the land surrounding this guest house which is set on acres of Olive orchard in Marrakesh. Heaven!!!
Good luck to you Maryam.
PS Katie has also done a posting for Maryam today. Check it out here


Yellow Yellow Yellow

The short days of winter are upon us. The time hasn't even changed yet and I am longing for sunshine. Maybe that is why I am having a fixation with yellow. It is still my favourite color. For my fifth birthday my mother asked me what I wanted, and I told her I wanted a new yellow party dress. Even at five I was quite particular. Yellow to me is happy, bright, optimistic. Interestingly enough it is the color that has the longest memory retention.

Who isn't attracted to the fist flushes of spring as indicated by tulips.Photography by David Duncan Livingston

This is one of my all time favourite rooms by Victoria Hagan. I love how she has layered yellow draperies on yellow walls.

Chinoiseries inspired wallpaper. Notice the matching fabric banding on the bottom of the draperies. If anyone knows the source for the wallpaper in this picture please let me know. Above 2 pictures Kelly Wearstler

This is a wonderful pendant lamp designed by Wis Design out of Sweden. The net of brass is reminiscent of a petticoat, which is concealed by the shade of plywood. The net twists around the bulb and creates a warm, golden, flowing light.

A beautiful "tessellation" tile

Credenza designed by the fabulous Tommi Parzinger for sale on 1st Dibs

Magnificent Directoire chairs. Picture via Studio Wellspring

I like the way Interior Design icon, Albert Hadley uses yellow as an accent color for furniture. The above is a room in his own home and the lower picture is his office.

David's Hicks's masterful use of bright acid yellow.

In this picture Jeffery Bilhuber uses a Raoul fabric for the sofa and draperies. I think it is particularly clever how he uses the Raoul fabric for the seat cushions and trim at the bottom of the sofa and upholsters the base of the sofa in a plain fabric. Brilliant Jeffery!

A beautiful all white kitchen with yellow accents. A bowl of lemons is an easy way to add a touch of yellow to the kitchen. Southern Accents In this room Interior Designer Jan Showers has used yellow as an accent color with sofa, lamp and artwork in an all white room.

Jeffery Bilhuber has used National Geographic magazines to get a pop of yellow into this warm and inviting sitting room.

Myra Hoefer Design

Another fantastic room by photographer David Duncan Livingston

What about getting some yellow by using wallpaper in your entry foyer? Designed by Suzanne Rheinstein
Gracie Studio Wallpaper

A beautiful and classic design by David Hicks. He uses yellow sofas and chairs in his design much the same way as Albert Hadley.

A wonderful yellow taffeta ball gown worn by Frances Elkins for her own portrait. Maybe she knew about the memorable qualities of the color yellow.

Please let me know what your favourite picture is.......
Patricia Gray writes about Interior Design inspirations, emerging trends, and the world of Design. While you're here, subscribe to this feed so you don't miss out.

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