WHAT IS JAMES WEARING? Rotating Header Image

ROBERT COUTURIER: DESIGNING PARADISES

Robert Couturier and James Andrew

Robert Couturier and James Andrew

Having just come back from lovely Lyford, Scott McBee and I were feeling a bit of the after-vacation blues, but to our great fortune we were just treated to another paradise getaway with our friends Robert Couturier, the legendary architect/tnterior designer, and his husband Jeffrey Morgan (respected in the field of vintage house restoration) at their home in Kent, Connecticut. Getting a chance to visit their idyllic country paradise (and four very sweet dogs, Henriette, Dora, Hercule and Clara) was a not-to-be-missed opportunity, so Scott Mcbee and I jumped at the chance.

Upon our arrival, drinks were taken in the library pavilion; it’s a ravishing room with sublime views—perfect for relaxation and conversation.

The Library (click to enlarge)

The Library (click to enlarge)

The library pavillion

The library pavillion

Properly primed, we made a refreshing tour of the gorgeous gardens and followed this with a delightful dining room luncheon. There, rows of French doors punctuate both long walls and are draped with Couturier designed curtains featuring a splendid Mughal motif of flowers embroidered by Parisian atelier, Lesage, who are famous for their work on couture gowns. The curtains are so sublime, in fact, that Couturier tells us they keep drawn most of the time.

The dining room (click to enlarge)

The dining room (click to enlarge)

After our lovely lunch, coffee was served in the living room. It’s a beautifully designed space with the most marvelous mix of fascinating things including pieces by my favorite Jean Michel Frank, and their angelic collection of cuddly little shih tzus certainly added to the feeling of warmth and charm that the space exudes.

The Living room (click to enlarge)

The Living room (click to enlarge)

Needless to say there are way too many details to share with you here, but not to worry! Thankfully Couturier has put together a tremendous Rizzoli tome, Robert Couturier: Designing Paradises in which he shares his Kent home as well as many of the other awe-inspiring homes that he’s created for clients around the world.

Robert_Couturier_cover

Couturier is known for his ability to capture the essence of place and for seamlessly integrating modern elements with period architecture and details. A couple of highlights for me are his Volcano House in Mexico. Created for Sir James Goldsmith, it was so perfectly realized that despite being new, it was declared a historic landmark! I also love the massive Lutyens restoration (it had seen better days, and had even gone through an incarnation as a school at one point). Couturier restored and re-envisioned the home as a modern day country house for his clients, furnishing it with contemporary art, objects, and furniture that lend it a wonderfully dynamic quality.

The book is a must-have; it’s a master class, not only in interior design and architecture, but also the art of living well.

For the most sublime day in Kent, I’m photographed with Couturier and his little angels. I’m dressed in a Tom Ford red cotton jacket, Turnbull and Asser mini red tartan cotton shirt with white contrast collar and cuffs, antique Scottish agate cuff links, Tom Ford silk pocket square, Adriano Meneghetti red and blue braided belt with silver buckle, Uniqlo jeans, vintage Rolex, Gucci sunglasses , navy suede loafers, and my fragrance is Creed Original Cologne

Purchase your copy of Robert Couturier: Designing Paradises on Amazon.

* * *

12 Comments

  1. Regina says:

    Straw hat, CHECK, glasses, CHECK, little babes in the arms, CHECK…looked familiar to me, ala Penny and you in Montecito! For a moment…just a moment…thought it was. I think this is a signature for you, your happy blog and those who are your chosen subjects.

    I just got his book…he is a RARE talent, much hard to find like the dwindling population of the Monarch Butterfly. Juxtaposing the Modern with the Classical is a Scholars Eye, so unlike those throwing away the Classical for the past years sadly. Look at those broken columns ala Desert De Retz of Crystal on lapis bases atop the dining table…yet pieces of Ingrid Donat float here and there…Seidner photos so Sargent, and Mapplethorpes.

    Tim Street-Porter, a local legend living in the Villa Vallambrosa in Whitley Heights above Hollywood, a home I adored. Oh so long ago, too many years ago, I hired him to photograph our home before we sold to Madonna. A few years ago, Julius Shulman photographed our present home.I try to chronicle for our Golden Years, our SHELLS where our SOULS dwelled within.

    Mr. Couturier has done well in Kentian Shell…not too mention his fabulous garden perched above the lake view. I have seen him several times lunching at Sant Ambroeus swaddled in Hermes around the neck…a NYC moment!

  2. La Contessa says:

    THIS looks beyond Fabulous……..I cannot keep up with you and your friends…….I must bow out gracefully…………its been FUN!

  3. Oh Bravo! I actually saw the dogs just like at my house!

    Do you remember that “the brilliant…..and I do mean BRILLIANT Regina” bought our house in Pasadena?? 1997!

    (before the house she and Bruce live in now! (another “Pavillon”!)

    Bruce will tell you she is a “genius”; I will tell you the same! She saw our house in Pasadena the day it was on a “Pasadena Heritage House Tour” (I could not make this up) We had decided to move to Montecito the day before…. Regina called our real estate agent…(Regina is a regal and real force of nature); our agent told her…..”no! I’m not calling them….they would NEVER move from that house!!!” (Oh well. should have made that call! ask the question!!!)

    Well….That was Monday…..Bruce and Regina were in escrow by Friday….(can you imagine….the real estate agent was mad at me!!! (she forgot to ask the question!!!)

    Anyway……we love you!

    How cute she noticed the doggies and thought of me! We love each other!!!

  4. Hey, Scott…….you have a secret weapon with dog photography!

    Bravo! It is nothing short of wonderful!!!

    XXOO

    Penny

  5. Karena says:

    James, I can not get Robert’s dining room out of my mind. The panels by Lesage are so mesmerizing! Their entire home is a dream! I must have his book!

    xoxo
    Karena
    The Arts by Karena

  6. James Andrew says:

    My Darling Regina,

    My favorite things beauty, gorgeous homes and exquisite beasts!!!!

    Robert Couturier is one of the most elegant men that I know and what an Iconic talent. His new book is brilliant and gives us a glimpse of his genius.

    So happy you are enjoying it!

    I would so love to see photos of your homes- would that be possible- you have my interest highly peaked!

    The gardens at Couturier’s home are a dream!

    We are so looking forward to an another visit there in November!

    Much Love

    JA

  7. James Andrew says:

    My Dear La Contessa,

    You certainly are creating some rather iconic images yourself- keep up the good work- we are all so enjoying ALL that you share.

    Much Love

    JA

  8. James Andrew says:

    My Dear Penelope Bianchi,

    Now I am desperate to see Regina’s homes!!!

    It all sounds so sublime!

    and

    Is there anything better than having a collection of furry friends in a photo and yes Mr McB is quite the whisperer when it comes to animals!

    Much Love

    JA

  9. James Andrew says:

    Darling Karena,

    The room is indeed a dream and the light -heavenly!

    As you can imagine the food was perfection and it was just all beyond words!

    Much Love

    JA

  10. Regina says:

    Too say the least ‘ I am a recluse or a loose wreck’, to quote Doris Duke…which means I may cherish my home more than others and in so, the mystery is perhaps better than the reveal. Privacy IS the greatest treasure, lost forever to those with Fortune and Fame.
    I fear you would be vastly disappointed…rather not like what is hip or current but just my taste…which isn’t vogue too say the least.

  11. James Andrew says:

    My Dear Regina,

    What a brilliant quote- I could base an entire blog post on that!

    I do indeed agree that besides -quiet- privacy is indeed a great luxury. Obviously I have given up a great deal of mine in attempting to share/promote etc.

    I am not one to follow fashion and terribly uninterested in – hip or trendy things.

    As YSL said – fashions fade style is forever!

    Much Love

    JA

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *