Last weekend the Wall Street Journal ran an article on a couple who, at Mick Jagger’s urging, bought a grand house just outside of London. Gael and Francesco Boglione bought Petersham House in 1997 and a few years later purchased the nursery next door. What makes the story so inspiring is that the Boglione’s are not gardeners, yet they transformed the run-down nursery into an enchanting destination where you can buy plants, homewares, furniture and have lunch in the cafe or tea in the teahouse. The restaurant, which started in a shed, can now handle hundreds of diners.
As we move into summer and move our lives outdoors, I am drawn to places like Petersham Nurseries– places that encourage me to create a welcoming and stylishly bohemian outdoor living space. Forget the expensive furniture from the fancy garden center, found and reclaimed pieces with cushions in fun, all-weather fabrics are the way to go. And maybe a few chickens for good measure.
Pierce Hobo large suede shoulder bag
High-neck pleated crepe de Chine jacket
Set of two gold-plated rings
Cotton-Polio wrap midi skirt
Hammock small leather and raffia tote
Le Cuffed mid-rise stretch-cotton shorts
The City Knot shoulder bag
Blair at home by Marko MacPherson for KiC
Have you ever met someone only to realize you have a million friends in common? That is precisely what happened to me and Blair. We would cross paths frequently, but did not really connect until a year ago when she ran into us shooting KiC on the street outside her apartment. A jewelry designer with an eponymous line, mother of three and Best Dressed List topper; Blair is a stylish profile.
Although based in New York, Blair was raised in North Carolina and travels extensively. Through her travels, a broad range of cultural influences have come into play as inspiration for her work. Numbers are also important, because as she says “everyone has a number that means something special.”
Blair Husain Jewelry was first on my radar when I saw a lot of friends wearing her one-of-a-kind Roman numeral pendants and bracelets to honor special occasions. But it is her new pieces, especially the “rock” rings, that I think are gorgeous and fun.
Blair on the street courtesy of Quest Magazine
What inspires your jewelry: Architecture, the gemology department at the Museum of Natural History and the Zodiac rotunda in the NYC courthouse at 1 Centre Street.
5 Spring Essentials:
Valentino Rockstud flats
Any art from the Rebecca Hossack Gallery, she has such a good eye
Naeem Khan cocktail dress
AG jeans in white
Ralph Lauren Ricky bag in purple croc
3 Beauty Musts:
Gold shimmer elastic hair ties at Zitomers
Fresh Twilight Face Glow Cream
A smile… it makes you look prettier!
A perfect day is: Sleeping late, having coffee from Sant Ambroeus in their beautiful salmon-colored disposable cups, going for a walk around the reservoir , meeting my family for a big brunch at Le Magnifique, watching my kids scooter in the neighborhood while I window shop, going to SLT for a workout, getting my hair blown-out (such a luxury) then reading stories to my children (listening to them laugh, watching them smile) and hearing them say their prayers…then off to dinner with my husband to T-Bar where they have the best lamb burger and banana dessert! Bliss!
Being a mother is: What I am most proud of and feel very blessed to experience.
Next destination: A family reunion in Jamaica for my brothers 40th!
Jill photographed by Marko MacPherson for KiC
Perhaps the best way to describe author and mother of three, Jill Kargman, is to compare her to Wednesday Addams (of the Addams family)–albeit Jill is the grown-up version, who lives in a classic Upper East Side apartment and has a far more enviable wardrobe. (Style, and success for that matter, run deep in her close-knit family; Jill’s father was president of Chanel for many years, her mother is insanely chic, and her art consultant brother, Will, is Drew Barrymore’s fiancé.).
Jill is elegant, girlish, and goth, an unusual mix that would make Tim Burton swoon. But it is her sublime, sharp-as-a-tack wit that is her most disarming characteristic; a conversation with her is filled with zingy one-liners that leave you breathless with laughter. Her honest, off-beat humor is the reason her novels are such as success. (The Washington Post dubbed her “Queen of the Beach Read”.) Her 10th book, The Rock Star in Seat 3A, hits the shelves May 22nd. Here, a peek into her latest obsessions and fashion must-haves.
What I love most about writing is….That I get to work from home. Even though I am not in PJ’s but in full dress and heels!
Five Spring essentials: Marc by Marc Jacobs flirty dresses, a vintage Chanel gray leather jacket cause I’m always cold, Valentino strappy sandals that don’t kill my feet, Chanel camellia sunglasses to avoid more squinty crow’s feet, and water.
Designers with the most hanger space in my closet: Marc by Marc Jacobs, Anna Sui, Phillip Lim 3.1
Three beauty musts: Pounding water, slathering Chanel Sublimage moisturizer, and Biotin by the handful. Think Valley of the Dolls handfuls.
Next destination: Disney World. AKA Orlandon’t.
A perfect day is…. No kiddies waking me up, a big vat of coffee, arriving at Soul Cycle to miraculously find the person before me had all the same bike settings, scalding shower, yummy brunch with my family, a massage, a nap, an early Mexican dinner, a Broadway show, and a yellow cab that happens to be right there when we exit the theater.
Favorite authors: Woody Allen and David Sedaris
Latest obsession: Planning book tour for The Rock Star in Seat 3A, my forthcoming summer beach read.
Keeps me sane: Working out, my best girlfriends, sleep.
With this sublime, unseasonably warm weather, I am not sorry we skipped Palm Beach and are happily at home. It’s so nice, that we bailed on skiing too. Every window is open and the dogs come and go freely. The longer days and extra daylight in the evening, courtesy of Daylight Savings, are also welcome.
I pinched the above image from one of my favorite blogs RduJour. The post, aptly entitled “rooms to inspire”, did just that. Here the pink and green is not so much preppy as pretty and fresh. Peonies are my absolute favorite spring flowers. And the matching Gracie wallpaper panel and seat cushions is something I am seriously considering copying.
Lauren photographed at home for KiC by Marko MacPherson
We have known Lauren for years beginning when we were all at Vogue in the 90s. We love Lauren for her irreverence and devil-may-care attitude, her feminine, grown-up style (she loves fashion but is no slave), and her warmth and generosity. These days she juggles being a mother of three, wife of artist Richard duPont, serving as the Creative Director at Jack Rogers and a creative consultant to Aerin Lauder’s soon-to-launch line, AERIN.
We had such a laugh while shooting her picture, reminiscing about the (sometimes) good old days as struggling editors and discussing kids’ camps and other issues that are now forefront on our minds.
4 Essential wardrobe items: A printed Dries Van Noten I bought at Barneys that I can wear for evening or during the day, a long printed Elizabeth & James skirt that is long and flowy and looks great with a boyish sweater, and two Comptoirs des Cottoniers dresses that look like sweaters with a skirt but are actually one piece–one is black sweater on top with polka-dot skirt, the other all plum. They are great and make getting dressed idiot-proof, great for weekends or work.
Rediscovered in my closet: A Pringle camel hair v-neck sweater that my Dad gave me when he was cleaning out his closet a few years ago. It’s big so it looks good with jeans and long skirts. I’ve also been pulling out my old fishermans sweaters that I used to wear back when I was a teenager. An Ann Demeulemeester black oversized boyfriend jacket that I bought in the late 90s (looks great with skinny pants and jeans). A Martin Margiela denim jacket with knit collar and denim skirt. Both timeless but until recently, shoved to the back of the closet.
What inspires you: Art, interiors, vintage fairs, estate sales and my crazy friends.
Home obsessions: William Morris wallpaper. I just wallpapered two bedrooms in my house in Connecticut in them. I could have done the whole house! I am obsessed with glass wear. I honestly can’t stop myself. The best finds are in Maine at the auction that comes to town and estate sales in Connecticut. Fabric is my other obsession, vintage and current. I buy bolts of things I love, even if I have nowhere to use it. One day I will use them, by then those fabrics will probably be discontinued.
Holiday hostess gift: Sweet Revolution caramels and the Alberto Pinto book on table settings. These are go-to gifts for people who have just about everything.
Holiday hostess outfit: To be honest, I am rarely a hostess. I have three children and entertaining makes me nervous.
Favorite holiday tradition you do with your kids: Opening boxes of ornaments and decorating the tree together. Last year every ornament and garland was felt (last year I went a little bonkers at the gift show).
Where will your next trip take you? Hopefully to the Mayflower Inn in Connecticut for a quiet weekend with my husband.
An image from Katie’s new book Rooms
Interior designer, KiC Style Setter and dear friend Katie Ridder has a new book Rooms which showcases her impeccable design sensibility and extraordinary use of color. Katie told me “this book shows that decorating can be fun, hard work, but fun.” I especially love the bird prints and bright green in this dining room. I love color in my homes and will follow Katie’s advice “always remember that around the corner there lies another color, more patterns, and design to explore and relish.” Words to live and decorate by!
an old picture of Aerin Lauder’s dressing room
I cleaned out my closet. Nothing was spared from my scrutiny and I ruthlessly tossed things that I had been holding onto for far too long. There may be less in there, but I wear everything I have.
Goop has closets on the brain too and posted a great newsletter last week about spring trends and how to organize and maintain your clothes. But what are closet essentials, the things that make a closet fully functional?
Here is my list.
1. A mirror, 3 way would be ideal
2. A chair
3. Good light
4. A rug (so you can try on shoes at home)
5. Hooks or rack to hang outfits being considered
6. A steamer (I have a Rowenta Precision Valet)
7. Padded hangers and skirt hangers with clips (toss or return all wire hangers from the cleaners).
8. Shoe racks. I do not like my shoes in boxes because I forget I have them.
9. A small table to put out accessories being considered
10. Bowls for odds and ends, a trash can and a laundry basket
11. A push-pin board with pictures of inspirational outfits, list of clothing needs, etc.
I love this big mirror leaning against the wall
I like to be able to see what I own and have belts hung on hooks on the wall and handbags are on shelves. My shoes are on open shelves too. The downside to having everything out is you need to dust frequently.
Interior Designer Katie Ridder
I’ve known Katie for a few years—she is the sister in law of my dear friend Helen Pennoyer. Before founding her own firm Katie Ridder Interior Design and Decoration in 1995, Katie was an editor at House & Garden and House Beautiful and in the early 1990’s she had a great home furnishings store on the Upper East Side.
Katie Ridder Interiors
Katie’s work has been featured in all the top shelter magazines and she (herself) has been featured on the cover of House Beautiful and Elle Decor. Not surprisingly, Katie is on the list of “Top 100 designers” in New York Magazine, Elle Decor and House Beautiful.
I love Katie’s design sensibility and especially her use of color. I also love that she was willing to answer so many of my questions!
Katie and jewelry designer Mish Tworkowski (upper right), Katie and her husband Peter Pennoyer (middle)