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HENRI SAMUEL: MASTER OF THE FRENCH INTERIOR

I’ve been catching up on my Summer reading, and we here at WIJW have quite a stack to review! Certainly one of the most recent standouts is my exquisite friend Emily Evans Eerdmans’ tremendous new Rizzoli tome: Henri Samuel: Master of the French Interior.

Henri Samuel, Grand Salon, Paris.

I’m forever fascinated by the work of the late Samuel, and I’m particularly captivated by his own apartment design on the ground floor of a rather grand hotel on rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré. Within this opulent space is an utterly divine drawing room with 16 foot ceilings and four pairs of French doors opening to a lovely garden. The walls are appointed with rich Pompeian red silk, and there is a marvelous mix of modernist and classical pieces (creating a lively resonance between new and old that I myself feature in my own design work!). Balthus’ 1956 Le Fruit d’or (The Golden Fruit) is a stunning focal point – it would be hard to imagine a painting more suited to the room. Needless to say the interior provides me with endless inspiration!

From “Henri Samuel: Master of the French Interior.”

Unbeknownst to me, Samuel got his start assisting Stephane Boudin of Jansen (another of my very favorites). It’s no wonder Samuel went on to create some of the most iconic interiors of his era, and his list of jet-set clients is in no way surprising. Doris Duke, the Aga Khan, Jayne Wrightsman, Valentino, and several Rothschilds were just a few.

From “Henri Samuel: Master of the French Interior.”

Baronne Alain De Rothschild lends his ringing endorsement: “Where clothes are concerned, the only person I trust is Balenciaga. The Same goes for Henri Samuel in the field of decoration.”

From “Henri Samuel: Master of the French Interior.”

Eerdman’s beautifully illustrated book is a celebration of Samuel’s life, his career, and the innovative and luxurious interiors he created; transcendent rooms that are as relevant now as they were in the past.

Do add this one to your library!
Pick up your copy here: Henri Samuel: Master of the French Interior.

SATURDAY SUBLIME

James Andrew - New York

James Andrew – New York

For me the perfect Saturday might consist of a good sleep-in, followed by a leisurely breakfast/brunch. Having fortified oneself, one might take a stroll around town; visit an auction preview or exhibition; do a little shopping; and take a late luncheon al fresco.

In fact, that’s pretty much just how yesterday unfolded! Perfection!

It’s approaching Summer here in New York – Saturday was a humid 80 degrees – so I wanted my ensemble to be fresh and crisp, casual yet chic. I paired a Gucci cotton voile vintage floral print tunic shirt with white Uniqlo jeans (nothing fresher), Tom Ford pale olive suede espadrilles, a vintage Gucci chartreuse python belt with silver double horsehead buckle, an Hermes “Cape Cod Deux Zones” watch. Gucci aviator sunglasses complete the look, and a splash of Hermes L’Eau de Gentiane Blanche (a beautiful and delicate scent) had me feeling fresh and energized for the day!

MARK D. SIKES: KIPS BAY SHOW HOUSE 2018

James Andrew in a Mark D. Sikes room at Kips Bay 2018. Photo Larson Harley

James Andrew in a Mark D. Sikes room at Kips Bay 2018. Photo by Larson Harley


I’m very happy to say that my exquisite friend, fellow designer Mark D. Sikes, is represented again at the 2018 Kips Bay Show House. You may recall the superb Sikes room at Kips Bay we brought to you in 2015? (see here) It doesn’t surprise us in the least that Sikes remains absolutely true to form with this year’s offering, bringing us the dazzling “Sleeping Beauty:” a bedroom fit for the likes of Pauline de Rothschild or Bunny Mellon! It’s an impossibly chic mix of the best of the best – absolutely timeless. Sikes has chosen Chinese wallpaper as a brilliant backdrop, and masterfully mixes in fabrics from his collection with Schumacher. Filled with antiques and objects from James Sansum and Carlton Hobbs, there are some rather impressive provenances – C Z Guest and the aforementioned Bunny Mellon for instance.

Designer Decorator Mark D. Sikes – Kips Bay Show House 2018. photo Larson Harley

Designer Decorator Mark D. Sikes – Kips Bay Show House 2018. photo Larson Harley

There are masses of porcelain flowers from the endlessly talented Vladimir Kanevsky (whose work was recently exhibited at the Hermitage in St. Petersburg!). Fabrics are Sikes’ beloved blue and white ikats and stripes, all perfectly paired with chinoiserie and a divine dhurrie from England. Sikes just gets everything right and I applaud his celebration of classic high style decoration and design.

Certainly Sikes is the highlight of this year’s show house. Do hurry there to see! And remember, your ticket goes to support the Kips Bay Boys and Girls clubs and their programs devoted to helping thousands of kids.

WIJW_Sikes2

Celebrating Sikes and his beautiful room, I’m sporting an ocean blue silk/wool melange suit by Tom Ford with a blue dot print shirt, Tom Ford tie and pocket square, Seaman Schepps pearl and sapphire cufflinks, Cartier Tank Divan watch. My shoes are Tom Ford era YSL black leather “Windsor” loafers. My fragrance is Creed Original Cologne, and I’m using a bit of Tom Ford Bronzing Gel for a sun kissed glow.