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Brooke Astor @ Sotheby’s

James Andrew at Sotheby's

James Andrew at Sotheby's

It was a bit strange seeing so many of the pieces I had once seen in Brooke Astor’s glorious homes now on view at Sotheby’s—ready for their next incarnations as it were.

While I was an interior designer in the employ of the legendary design firm Parish-Hadley, I was hugely fortunate to be able to inspect Brooke Astor’s Park Avenue duplex in person, and I can tell you the red lacquer library Hadley created for her is no doubt one of the finest rooms of the 20th century. Parish-Hadley was the interior design firm on all of Astor’s projects and homes, so I had unrestricted access to all the design schemes and rooms that were created for her. Needless to say it was an amazing education to see first hand the brilliant collaboration of such a super sophisticated client with a world class firm like Parish-Hadley.

Astor was the epitome of a New York City Socialite. A renowned philanthropist and tireless champion of the institutions of the city of New York, it was Mrs. Astor’s goal to give away her husband’s millions in support of her favorite causes and charities. She even had Parish-Hadley create a room in her apartment she nick-named “The Money Room” to be used as a base of operations for her philanthropic pursuits. She celebrated life with such an amazing grace and elegance and left a truly lasting legacy of inspiration for generations to come.

Here to bid on a few pieces at Sotheby’s, I’m sporting a Tom Ford brown plaid suit in linen, silk and cashmere, brown leather tasseled loafers, turquoise and brown silk pocket square and “Cyrille” sunglasses, precious turquoise cuff links, Turnbull and Asser shirt in pale turquoise herringbone weave with contrast white collar and cuffs and my fragrance is Creed Original Santal.


  1. Ela says:

    I just found your website via Melissa’s twitter, and I’ve spent the last hour combing over old posts. Thank you for bringing me back to a more civilized time. Absolutely LOVE your blog. See you tomorrow.

  2. wendy woo says:

    Dear James
    Thank you for sharing your experience with B.A. She has been a role model of mine for many years. These personal tid bits were delicious!

  3. James Andrew says:

    Dear Wendy,

    It was such a great honor to have had the experiences I had with Parish Hadley!



  4. francisco says:

    muchas gracias!!!

  5. josh says:

    Lucky dog! Saw you looking impeccable at the auction and hope you you managed to take something home. Enjoy your blog immensely!!

  6. Brad says:

    You look very nice. Did you end up buying anything?

  7. James Andrew says:

    Brad- sadly all the things I wanted went way above the estimates- as to be expected with an auction like this.



  8. James Andrew says:

    Hello Josh,

    Thank You! and why didn’t you say hello????

    Were you sitting behind me?

    Sadly- I did not get the lots I had wanted.

    How did you do?



  9. James Andrew says:

    Dear Ela,

    How fantastic to receive your lovely comment here on WIJW?

    Yes – I am a bit nostalgic for “a more civilized time” – I am hoping that what I am sharing here inspires a return to old school manners, charm, elegance and sophistication.

    I adore Melissa – she is so lovely to share what I am trying to do here.

    Cheers and Many Thanks


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