in Color Inspiration, Furniture, Interiors, Ispiration

A good example of how to use colours and some thoughts about the present

A friend of mine have just left a comment below one of my posts on Instagram noting that I have published quite a bit of beautiful hotels recently and if that hides a desire to travel. Yes, it does. In the last few weeks I have felt a bit caged. I miss exploring. I can’t even got to see an exhibition! Museums in Italy are open Monday to Friday until 18.00, basically they are open for retired people who probably don’t go anyway considering they are the most vulnerable age. We need to be more patient, things are going eventually to settle down even if I wonder if they are ever going to be back to how they were.

Going back to the my recent obsession for hotels, today we are going to speak about Hotel Les Deux Gares. Located between Gare du Nord and Gare de L’Est in Paris (hence the name), this small hotel has everything you need, including a gym and a lovely atmosphere. The interiors were designed by British enfant-prodige Luke Edward Hall and they are an excellent example of how colours can transform a place. The young designers has cleverly mixed vibrant greens, yellows, pinks and light blues with touches of red, geometric patterns, stripes, fringes, leopard and much more. The space look so cohesive though because the main colours are recurring even if used in different ways: light blue can be for instance a sink, in a stripy fabric, a wall, the background of a wallpaper, a door frame.
Totally inspiring!

Photos courtesy of Hotel Les Deux Gares.

in Interiors

India Mahdavi for De Gournay

I am very excited to show you the spectacular De Gournay Paris showroom designed by India Mahdavi as a part of the annual event Deco Off 2020. Only India could have pulled off such a glamorous look, that manages to be very belle epoque and very fashionable at the same time. The half Iranian, half anglo-Egyptian designer and architect is a master at creating sexy and unexpected colour associations and in using vibrant and brave shades, dressed with feminine details with interesting rounded shapes.

The showroom is composed of two large rooms. The lounge room with large purple velvet seats features India Mahadavi’s new Abbasi in The Sky wallpaper commissioned by the historic French brand De Gournay. The mural, part of the collection PPP, was inspired by the work of 16th century Iranian miniaturist Reza Abbasi; the scene is hand-painted on duck-egg coloured silk. A soft luxurious lilac carpet visually connects this space with the adjacent room where walls are covered with the bright orange version of the geometric wallpaper Chez Nina. Unmissable in most of India, Mahdavi’s interiors always include the Charlotte armchairs in soft pink velvet (see Sketch, in London for instance).

Photos di Rebecca Reid (courtesy of De Gourney)

in Color Inspiration, Furniture, Interiors, Ispiration

Green, pink and gold: Felix Soho

Who wouldn’t want to have a coffee at the Felix Roasting Co.?

After the great success of the Felix Roasting Co. in Midtown in New York and thousands of Instagram shares of its photos, Ken Fulk, designer, creative director and partner of the project and proprietor Matthew Moinian opened last August another hot shop in Soho, London, Felix Soho.

Like the American sibling, the interiors are lush and eye-catching. The dominant colours -a rich blue-green, a soft pink and sparkling gold- bring together different materials and patterns.

(Photographs courtesy Felix Roasting Co.)

in Arts+ Crafts, Furniture, Interiors, Ispiration, People

Living in a museum

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Palermo is one of my favourite cities in the entire world. It is a magical, fascinating, exotic, elegant place where life seems to be so sweet that you almost feel compelled to move there. Every time I go, I discover new incredible things and my love for the city grows a bit more.

One of my recent discoveries was Palazzo Contefederico, a few steps from from the buzzing Ballaro’ market. This sixteenth century palace is still inhabited by the Count Alessandro Federico and his family; one of Alessandro’s sons guided me around the marvellous rooms of the Palazzo Contefederico. The fact that the tours are led by a member of the family and the fact it is still their home make the experience unique.

It is a very inspirational visit for the interior design lovers with colourful original tiled floors, beautiful pictures and frames, precious wall-coverings and numerous delightful glimpses into another world.

Also unmissable is the majolicas collection at Le Stanze al Genio, that I wrote about some time ago.

Unfortunately the vintage shop Mercurio & C that I photographed last year closed down (see the post). A boring jewellery shop opened instead (even if originally it was a jewellery shop).

(Photographs by Elena Giavarini)

in Color Inspiration, Interiors, Ispiration

Please let me use Nuvolette wallpaper by Fornasetti

It is hilarious, I have been trying to use Nuvolette wallpaper by Fornasetti for years but every time I propose it to a client along with other options, they never go for it. They all recognise that it is gorgeous but they find it a bit unsettling, perhaps too nostalgic or simply too tempestous.

Don’t get it me wrong, I wouldn’t use it all around a house, I would put it on a wall or a entryway but it is the same for the wallpapers I love, better in small dozes.

A part from that, it is a classic, a safe choice because it is above fashion and it will never become outdated. It has a repetitive, strong motif and the fact that it is white and grey makes it very elegant.

Nuvolette was designed by Fornasetti , it is produced by Cole&Son and distributed by vary suppliers; it comes in different colors or intensity (for instance darker or in light blue) but my favourite is the classic version in light grey.

I would advise anyone to use it in small quantities on walls large enough to appreciate the design or contiguous walls.

Another wallpaper my clients like but don’t dare pick for their homes is Calico, designed by Rachel and Nick Cope.

And you, what do you think? Do you like Nuvolette by Fornasetti? Would you have it in your house?

in Color Inspiration, Interiors, Ispiration

Less doesn’t always mean more

Less doesn’t always mean more and this townhouse in Brentford, designed by Doris Lee, proves it. It is a blast of colours, patterns and surreal wall art.

This is probably Doris’s, a self-taught Australian born interior designer now based in London, most extravagant project.

She picked a deep blue for the kitchen and living area and brightened it up with accents of emerald green. Some walls are covered in cork, a material largely used in the Eighties in some Mediterranean countries and now back in fashion.

There are numerous types of cork wallpaper available on the market but unfortunately I can’t recommend any particular supplier because I have not used it yet; maybe one of my readers could point out a good place where to get some from.

Doris then used some fun, colourful, fairy-tale wallpaper and plenty of playful, retro wall-art and objects. The textiles are not predictable, they even add to the project.

A fun space for sure.

in Color Inspiration, Interiors, Ispiration, People

The best fabric shop in Rome!

This is the place where I get textiles from, photographed by the talented Elio Rosato.

The atelier, Le Proposte d’Interni, occupies two large rooms of a stunning Roman building built in 1542.

Sandro and Giovanni, cousins with a long family tradition in dealing with textiles for interiors, scraped away the layers of paint applied over the last 50 years to find the original faded light green color.

In one room, you can still see the old bookcases where documents were kept, now used to store some of the wonderful fabrics.

Interior fabrics have always been my passion and I like to come here, I could actually spend hours here (sometimes I do, to be honest !)



in Arts+ Crafts, Color Inspiration, Furniture, Interiors

Kiki Slaughter’s studio in Atlanta

I love studios: most of the times they tell a story of passion, not just work.

Kiki Slaughter’s studio in Atlanta is a dream-come-true with big windows, an industrial feeling and the harmonious colors of her paintings all around.

Kiki Slaughter’s latest creation is Oh La La in Verdigris wallpaper for FEATHR, part of   Oh La La wallpaper collection.

This wallpaper with a palette of “soft mint, seafoam and viridian with brick brown and terracotta”, as perfectly described on FEATHR’s website, represents the experimental, spontenous painting approach of this American artist.

Check out the Italian sculptur Davide Dormino’s studio or the fashion designers Antonio Marras’s or Stella Jeans’s  studios and tell me which one is closer to your style on +Deco.

To see some pretty water-colored cushions, check this post.

Photographs by Jimmy Johnston

in Interiors

Samantha Santana’s bold peel and stick wallpaper

I got very enthusiastic recently about Samantha Santana’s wallpaper. First of all it is an explosion of bright colours, a blast of flowers; also her wallpaper, in the peel and stick version, is very convenient not just because of the price but also because it is easy to apply and easy to remove unlike traditional wallpaper (and you can find this version as well on Samatha Santana‘s website).

It is a good idea for photo shoot backgrounds as well (and this is why it caught my attention in the first place)

Samantha Santana’s designs almost have a photographic definition that gives them depth and a more contemporary look. They are in fact much more audacious than many of the flowery country-house-style wallpaper on the market.

On Samantha Santana‘s website there is a video where she shows how to apply them onto the wall; it looks very easy.

This fabric wallpaper is printed on a woven material with green eco-friendly inks which make it even more appealing.

Before putting it up though, make yourself sure that the plaster on the wall is compact and not about to crumble (even if it doesn’t look like it is sometimes it does). It is advisable in fact to test the material on the wall first.

In any case, I am sure you can think of many different places to use this summery uplifting wallpaper!

Samantha is based in the USA but she happily delivers all over the world. She is really nice and helpful and she answers your queries normally within hours.

So, have I convinced you, shall we do a cumulative order?
For some tropical wallpaper, see here or for some other don’t-go-unnoticed wallpaper by Hermes, see here.


in Interiors, Ispiration

Wallpaper: new alternatives to tropical

I don’t know about you but I have had enough of tropical wallpapers with their palm leaves and exotic birds sprawled all over lush vegetation.

Don’t get me wrong, I like some of the classic or new tropical designs, I just get bored of a look when I see it everywhere.

I have therefore selected some new different wallpapers for those of you who are wondering what the alternatives are to the natural look.

The first one from at the top is Circus from Wall&Decò, a very glamorous alternative to a simple faded wall.

Wall&Decò always manage to come up with something different, I have to say. The Italian brand, famous also for its outdoor wallpaper (see my post), is becoming more and more successful.

The most tropical one in my selection is the second from the top, Miami from the collection Icon by Cole& Son.  It is available also in black and white but I like this variation best, it’s less visually aggressive.

The third one from top is again from Wall&Decò and it is called 17130EWC. I have picked it for those who like a more timeless, elegant look.

The dark red wallpaper matching the fabric of the sofa is Mey Meh by House of Hackney and it is for those who like to dare. Such a busy, unique wallpaper probably suits period houses best and it definitely needs a lot of thought in matching the rest of the decorative elements. In a few words, don’t choose a wallpaper like that if the rest of the furniture doesn’t go with it: for instance a white Ikea piece against such a background would stick out like a sore thumb.

Carrying on, we have Hornbeam by Farrow & Ball, in an unusual and very pretty combination of the colors divided by a frame painted in the common shade of green. Hornbeam is not a new design from the British brand probably better known for its paints, but it is a graceful option in every shade available.

The wallpaper in the bathroom (second image from the bottom) is designed by Christian Lacroix for Designers Guild and it is called Bain the Minuit-Mediterranee.

I have to say that Christian Lacroix is one of the main reason why I still follow Designers Guild that used to appeal to me more in the past.

Last but not least a striking wallpaper by Pierre Frey called Soccorro, inspired by the Maya geometrics. I am a big fan of Pierre Frey fabrics these day so I couldn’t not include one of his wallpapers even if I wished more set photos were available on their website.