Atelier in Istanbul


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Asli Tunca 3

“Tucked away in the maze of Istanbul’s cobbled alleys, the home/gallery of designer Asli Tunca and her husband Carl Vercauteren hardly trumpets its presence. But the quality of the couple’s restored European antiques and Ottoman-influenced bespoke furniture means that discerning clients always beat a path to their unmarked door.”

This is the home to which the stairs on the previous post belong. Notice the Dutch

Baroque Processional Frame tucked under stairs. The coffee table, their own design,

is inlaid with mother of pearl, horn and bone.

Asli Tunca 12

In the ground floor reception area, a pair of shellstone sphinxes bought

in Britain have faces modeled on Madame Pompadour.

Asli Tunca 13

The handcrafted staircase…took a nearly a year to complete

“They live and work in the Beyoglu district, an area north of the Golden Horn. Originally, it was a hunting ground for Roman and Byzantine nobility, their villas and lodges gradually populating the wooden hillsides that overlook Bosphorus. When the Ottoman Turks conquered Istanbul in 1453, they were eager to keep foreigners out of the sultan’s city, so Beyoglu, where ships stopped to load and unload their cargo, became the obvious place to accommodate them. The district became a thriving trading post for predominantly Genoese and Venetian merchants, and its increasing importance was marked by the creation of several embassies until, by the end of the 17th century, Beyoglu was transformed into a colony of influential foreigners.”

Asli Tunca Trouvais

Carl is a Belgian artist and metal sculptor whose focus is on designing and overseeing the creation of

locally made wood and metal furniture, and personally restores objects trouvés and antiques.

Asli Tunca 20

Asli buys antique fabrics to dye and rework into curtains, cushions and hangings, and to

upholster Carl’s sofas and chairs.

Asli Tunca 11

Asli Tunca 18

The medieval house has five floors,

It took the couple 3 years to restore it.

Asli Tunca 5

The top floor with its architectural features was perfect for Carl’s studio

and contains furniture and architectural salvage for inspiration.

The middle floors are the family’s living area. And the high ceiling ground floor is

ideal for showing furniture, thus is home and gallery combined.

Asli Tunca 17

HG archives 2

Books and files in the chestnut- paneled library have been covered with

goatskin parchment and hand labeled on the spine.

For more gorgeous photography visit their site Asli Tunca


Sources:  World of Interiors June ’08

Karen Howes, photography Miguel Flores Vianna

House and Garden Oct. ’07

About these ads

Hardscape in interior design…


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House and Garden British crop

The strong lines and structural materials dominate this

image of the sitting room at Maison Leo in the south of  France…

House and Garden British Oct '09 4

When my children were young, pouring my energy into the garden gave me an

outlet for my creativity, and a way to work alongside them, teaching them lessons

about patience, hard work and reward…

House and Garden British Oct '09 5

I read copious amounts of gardening literature… learned the difference between

geraniums and pelargoniums, the best lavender to grow for fragrance and cutting,

and how deep to plant herbaceous peonies in a Northern California garden.

Though originating in China and endemic to the snowdrift winters of the upper Midwest,

rumor had it that peonies would set buds in milder climes if planted ever so slightly

closer to the surface to take maximum advantage of any chill that might settle over them.

And lastly, all books belabored the ubiquitous garden terms: softscape and hardscape.

HG archives

These photos all show the hardscape of interior design…

the hard lines of pathways and vertical interest…

The permanent elements around which drapery and upholstery,

and various small accessories can drift in and out from year

to year…

Les Pavillions

And century to century…

The Pavillon de Musique de Madame

Avenue de Paris, on the outskirts of Versailles…

Part of the Le Grande et Petit Montreuil estate

Les Pavillions 2

Les Pavillons

French Pavilions of the Eighteenth Century

Jerome Zerbe & Cyril Connolly

Recommended by designer Timothy Corrigan via Diane at The Style Saloniste

and checked out from UC Berkeley’s vast library system for me by my daughter Austin…

Previous check out date: Dec. 1999…I have this beauty for month, oh joy….

Feau boiserie HG 6

In Paris the Féau & Cie warehouse is full of preserved and reproduced

boiserie….elements of historical hardscape…

French Doors Eloquence

For those of us who have less palatial environs, architectural salvage

can be functional or “installation art”….

I can imagine these gorgeous mirrored villa doors throwing

the reflection of a candelabra lit dining table about the room…

Diane Dorrans Saeks book

And sometimes a very simple hardscape,

the beauty of an almost bare wall…

can make our treasures stand out even more…


Sources: House and Garden (British) Oct. ’09, HG archives,

San Francisco Interiors Diane Dorrans Saeks

Moving in…


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Trouvais 0001DSCN9067

I dropped by my sister’s new old house today…

laundry stacked on the sofa, her “Belgian Garage

virtually impassable with moving boxes tilting and

listing and obstructing.

Trouvais 0001DSCN9096_1

She’d quickly reconstituted her favorite items

in their new places…a hinged multi paned glass door from

Ohmega Salvage in front of a tall stack of leather books…

A tapestry from Belgium….

Trouvais 0001DSCN9101

Family portraits in gilded frames…

an Anthropologie floor lamp…

Trouvais 0001DSCN9072

She had embroidered her initials herself onto this cozy

and loosely recovered French bergere…

The wood floors sanded down and bleached and oiled…

Trouvais 0001DSCN9089

When she’d visited Belgium in January she picked out this

antique Belgian china hutch…

A “left behind” pendant working for now.

Trouvais 0001DSCN9138

One of her husband’s relatives patiently waiting to be placed….

Trouvais 0001DSCN9145

That just moved in and “where is everything?” look….

Trouvais 0001DSCN9147

The back yard…olive trees in pots placed on either side of an old elevation

defining the space and making it their own…

Gilded and Rosy…


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HG archives 4

Into the deepening tones of autumn…

Couldn’t resist sending a few more rosy and gilded tones your way…

Silk Dancing Satyr c. 1797, fabric for Napoleon's bedchamber c. 1808 Pernon

Antique fabrics…

Dancing Satyr in silk c. 1797

Golden silk below made for Napoleon’s bedchamber

c. 1808 Pernon


HG archives Trouvais

Yet another gorgeous Paris Apartment…

“Diana Vreeland said pink is the navy blue of India,

but it’s really pink and orange”

Lisa Fine of the decor in her 7th arrondissement apartment…

House and Garden archives…



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HG archives

Some gorgeous palazzo somewhere, mixing roman stripes, parquetry floors,

chinoiserie, baroque metal sconces, and up to the ceiling limestone fireplace…

Stephen Shubel HG

Stephen Shubel brightening up a corner of San Francisco

with 250 yards of tangerine silk curtains. Saffron, butterscotch,

marigold, and blood orange mingle in silk, velvet, linen and cotton…

Fortuny style ceiling lamp by Feneri through Sloan Miyasato, San Francisco

Stephen Shubel HG 2

19th century French pine armoire…looks like a Houdon bust inside

Gilded French pinewood and crystal chandelier…

Shubel modeled the swan-neck daybed after a 19th century Italian design…

Stephen Shubel HG Trouvais

Hand-planed wide plank walnut floors stained a honey color…

Louis XV and XVI chairs alternately upholstered in yellow and

orange cotton velvet…

HG archives 7


2 and 3/4 cup all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon nutmeg

1 teaspoon ginger

1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 and 1/2 cup raisins

2 sticks (minus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter)

1 cup firmly packed brown sugar

2 eggs

1 and 1/2 cups unseasoned canned pumpkin


6 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 and 1/2 cups powdered sugar

Pre-heat the oven to 375

Sift together all dry ingredients, beat butter with brown sugar until fluffy, add eggs one at a time,

beating well after each addition. It’ll look curdled, don’t worry. Add pumpkin, mix until combined,

add raisins. Drop large spoonful of cookie dough onto greased or parchment lined cookie sheets,

bake in the top third of pre-heated oven until top springs back when touched (15-18 minutes). Make

the glaze by melting the butter and whisking in the powdered sugar, add water if too thick…

Drizzle on top of cookies. Simply my favorite cookie of all time. I cannot tell you how often

I’ve made them since getting the Il Fornaio Baking Book by Franco Galli over 10 years ago.

I must confess, I never sift the dry ingredients, and dump icing on each cookie rather than drizzle.

It’s the perfect week for pumpkin…


All photos House and Garden:

 first photo unknown, next three Stephen Shubel Nov. ’04,

final photo : patinated walls by Françoise Billon Sept. ’06

Shadow fiqures…


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Trouvais 0001DSCN8771

After a week of complications, I was in the mood to do something simple, creative,

and fun today…so I dropped into our local thrift store, settled on a

nice 18th century style figurine for $20…

Trouvais 0001DSCN8670

Click to enlarge if you want to study the subtle (?!) nuances of color…

I sanded this little beauty down just a bit, roughing her up with

sandpaper to slightly de-gloss her and make it easier for the paint

to grab, and happily dragged out my hoard of gray paint…

lady-9 Kathy Dalwood

This was my inspiration…Kathy Dalwood’s lovely cast concrete figurines…

the cement updating their 18th century charms…

Kathy Dalwood

…more Kathy Dalwood here in my post “Pretty Gray things”…

Trouvais 0001DSCN7952

I used C2′s Stomp paint (flat finish) to completely cover.  Then adding a light gray beside

Stomp on a plastic tray,  mixed the lighter gray in a bit to highlight and add that “bloom”

you get on weathered metal… being somewhat careless in the application…

The decorative swag is a piece of bronze furniture ormolu I painted

earlier …awaiting another project …

Trouvais 0001DSCN8738

Pensive in the setting afternoon sun…

next to a weathered small zinc pot, crystal dropped shelf…


Wisteria zinc tones updated trumeau…


And zinc rooftop finials…

You could say I have a thing for gray…

Click here to see Show and tell Friday

at My Romantic Home

Desk set…


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Saladino Villa Trouvias

Saladino’s study at his Villa in Santa Barbara…

Antique Zuber wallpaper screen…

High backed Italian baroque armchair with it’s original patinated leather

Saladino Villa 2

Desk, with carved decorations of snakes, is either Spanish

or South American… 17th century Italian desk chair covered in

19th century American grain-feed bag…

Letter Queen Victoria to Lady Derby c. 1818

A handwritten letter from Queen Victoria to Lady Derby

Wife of the Prime Minister Lord Derby

c. 1818

Inkwells tortoise inlaid with MOP silver gold c. 1907

Tortoise shell inkwell

inlaid with silver, gold, abalone, mother of pearl…


HG archives 2 Trouvais

Tapestry Y & B Bolour

Decorator Tom Allardyce in Beverly Hills

Trouvais 0001DSCN7083

Burl wood inlaid French desk in my living room with my favorite Houdon bust…

Silver leaf tall lamps with taupe shades, tufted ottoman tucked underneath…

Mirror reflecting the tall shelves on either side of a window seat…

Once dark paneled…the living room is still in transition…


Sources: Villa Saladino (photos cropped, to see in full, double paged glory order book here),

HG archives, Auction catalog

Dining in Paris, a collectors story…


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French Interiors 6

From French Interiors, the Art of Elegance

Christiane de Nicolay-Mazery

Absolutely beautiful book, chapters open separated by vellum title pages

like a special invitation to enter the world of both the private collector

and design celebrity: Givenchy, Yves Saint Laurent, Jacques

Grange, Madeleine Castaing…French Interiors 4

Crystal glasses and carafes decorated with enameled roses, flourishes and fleurs-de-lis…

made for the marriage of the private collector’s great-grandmother, Adélaïde, in 1880

French Interiors 2

The cutlery is silver gilt, with knife handles in

exquisitely detailed 18th century Saxony porcelain…

French Interiors 8

This is part of a Sèvres dinner service in shades of pink made for Louis-Philippe in 1836.

The decoration of foliage arabesques and animals is punctuated by the royal

cipher…left corner…

French Interiors

In the world of private collectors Alix and Philippe…entered through the narrow,

old lamp lit street near La Butte-aux-Cailles in Paris…a vast collection of 19th century

bronzes, drawings, watercolors, etc, have been amassed over 30 years of  marriage.

Alix started collecting when she was 20. While working for an important art dealer, she

decided to set aside a third of her salary to spend on drawings. After her marriage, she

and her husband would rummage through the Marché aux Puces, or visit antique dealer

friends…their collection of drawings and watercolors includes Cicéri, Boudin,

Constantin Guys, Gustave Doré, Raffet, Detaille, Isabey, and Gavarni.

French Interiors 3

Herend’s Rothschild bird porcelain at the ready on a side table…

The large red salon… filled with bronzes, paintings, drawings, and watercolors…

The crowded hanging scheme and the profusion of objets d’art and porcelain…

create an atmosphere reminiscent of the private collections, or cabinets d’amateurs,

of the 19th century

French Interiors 7

Among the gilt-framed paintings in the large salon, a young oriental woman by Roybert

plunges the viewer into the atmosphere of the 19th century painting salons and their

fascination with an idealized vision of the Orient.

French Interiors 10

An alabaster bust of Sappho stands on the mantlepiece…


French Interiors photography by Christina Vervitsioti-Missoffe

Candlelight and roses…


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Karl Lagerfeld Fabrics Trouvais

Lit à la Polonaise dressed in floral printed silk…

Karl Lagerfeld’s apartment in Paris

Personally…I would have switched out the lamp shade

for a candelabra…

1stdibs French c. 1860 bronze flat back

French bronze c. 1860



Silk taffeta embroidered in chain and Beauvais stitch, late 18th century



David Austin …English rose collection

Wisteria book box

Wisteria book boxes

Thomas Chippendale seating Burton Constable Hall Fabrics by Lebear

Thomas Chippendale seating c. 1778

for drawing room at Burton Constable Hall


Madame Ernest Calvat

French porcelain c. 1803 Chantilly

French porcelain c. 1810



Honorine de Brabant

1stdibs c 1810.detail

1stdibs c 1810

French Empire Embroidery on a Silk and Down Pillow Empire Period c.1810

Unbelievable survival of French Empire embroidery portraying peacocks with snakes

and other romantic flora and fauna. Silver, gold and intense indigo threads on brilliant

deep pink silk with a softly time faded quality.


Raspberry silk moire walls and chair Trouvais

Raspberry Moiré on the walls of the queen’s bedroom at Kina Slott, Drottingholm Palace. From my archive of old House and Gardens.


Sources: Fabrics: The Decorative Art of Textile by Caroline Lebeau

1stdibs,, Ebay, my garden…

Antique fabric, sample books…


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Silk book Filley de la Barre Bed Chateau d'Azay-le0Rideau Trouvais

The “Filley de la Barre”  bed

Late 17th or early 18th century embroidered white satin bed canopy

Château d’Azay-le-Rideau

Just imagine the industry behind creating beautiful fabrics for dress, bedding, drapery,

carpets…and communicating that design to the customer in the 18th and 19th century …

Antique sample books and oil painted aubusson canvas studies

are a collectible part of the process.

Silk book samples Trouvais

Eighteenth-century silk patterns were primarily floral. Lyon silk manufactures

regularly sent their designers to Paris to meet with artists specializing in flower painting,

and to visit the botanical gardens…

Fashion in Detail English c 1740 mantua petticoat of silk embroidered ivory ribbed silk

Flipped on it’s side…

View of English c. 1740-45  mantua petticoat…

Ivory ribbed silk embroidered with colored silks and silver thread

17th and 18th Century Fashion in Detail

Avril Hart and Susan North

Silk pattern book Prelle archives, Lyon

Silk pattern book

Prelle archives

Lyon, France

Silk sample book of silks woven at Saint-Etienne 1770-1810 Musee d'Art et d'Industrie Trouvais

Silk sample book of silks woven

at Saint-Étienne c. 1770-1810

Musée d’Art et d’Industrie

le divan nov 06

18th century French sample book


Le Divan Fumior

Silk book hanks of silk thread, dyeing samples Caron Baudoin c. 1893 Quenin archives, Cuizner Trouvais

Hanks of silk thread…

Dyeing samples.

Caron Baudoin c. 1893

Quenin archives, Cuizner

Silk book Georges le Manaxh archichves, Tours, France Trouvais

Georges le Manaxh archives…

Tours, France

…more on sample books here

including the Cooper-Hewitt Museum exhibit…(click to view)

Unless otherwise mentioned, all photos from Silk Jacques Anquetil

19th century French Aubusson painting Trouvais

19th century French pastoral scene…

Oil on canvas painting, created for the development of Aubusson wovens…

Features a scene of sheep and a lamb, framed by decorative elements

such as scrolls, a fabric swag with tassels, and garlands of flowers and leaves…


19th century French Aubusson painting 2 Trouvais.

19th Century French painted Aubusson sample…

Beautiful bouquet of roses, peonies and other assorted flowers, fruit and berries in a

basket  surrounded by a cartouche interlaced with rose vines…oil on canvas

Antique World Fabrics here



Heather Clawson of Habitually Chic was recently in Paris and visited the

Pierre Frey headquarters where there is an extensive collection of antique fabric

and wall paper, antique clothing, painted canvases and even a room model

to show how fabric would look in the room…visit here

Judging a book by its cover…

Flowers for the home book

Prudence Designs New York florist

This picture says it all to me…

A week of gray skies and gray paint chips…

The rough dark walls and delicate caned French chair…

Scintillating purples against smoldering gray…

Trove Laguna 18th c trestle table, 19c Belgian chandelier

And my favorite images of the week…from Trove

19th century Belgian chandelier

dangling incandescently above the rough French trestle…

Astier in store at Trove Laguna

A glimpse of Astier de Villatte…

Seems to drift almost as lightly as an apparition…

over the more earthly surfaces

Trouvais 0001DSCN8574

My last tip for the week…

grow Japanese Anenomes…

they’re”invasive” , which means they’re perfect for the lazy gardener,

and they really do something for the last  roses of the season…


It’s been a “Rough Luxe” week for me…

Stormy power outages and candlelight and roses…

Hope everyone is having a lovely day…

YSL and Pierre Bergé and Jacques Grange, oh my…


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YSL Berge HG 2 Trouvais

The stunning collaboration between Jacques Grange, Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé

on the Normandy manor Château Gabriel was inspired by Marcel Proust’s

À la Recherche du Temps Perdu.  Marcel, who spent the summers in nearby

Cabourg,  is said to have visited the house…

YSL Berge HG 4 TrouvaisThroughout the ground floor reception rooms, the walls are covered

by murals created by Paul Meriguet in homage to Monet’s Water Lilies…

Madeleine Castaing chair covered in pale pink velvet sprinkled with flowers,

“…reminiscent of buxom ballerinas in fringed tutus.”

YSL Berge HG 11 Trouvais

The opulent overabundance of the Napoleon III period almost overwhelms the eye in the

grande salon. Grange calls it ” a blend of a Visconti film and the style Rothschild”

YSL Berge HG 3 Trouvais

A photograph of Marcel Proust amidst an arrangement of Minton porcelain

and a vintage Baccarat crystal box. Saint Laurent named each of the  nine bedrooms

for characters in Proust’s novel. His own named after the cultivated and sensitive

Charles Swann…the pseudonym that the couturier used when he traveled incognito.

YSL Berge HG 6 Trouvais

The black and beige marble floors extend from the main dining room into the smaller one…

French 19th century neo-gothic chairs surround an English mahogany table…

Lit by 19th century antique chandelier, 18th century Strasbourg cabbage…

YSL Berge HG 7 Trouvais

Continuing the conversation of Little Augury here and bolstering my claim that the US cover of

The Private World of Yves Saint Laurent & Pierre Berg is more representative of the interiors…

and therefore better than the French cover…visit her and cast your vote…

YSL vendome jkt US.indd

All photos (except book):  House and Garden December 2005

Blog award…

I am so honored that the estimable and delightful  P. Gaye Tapp of Little Augury fame…

has bestowed upon me the Kreativ Blogger award.

My duty is to thank Little Augury (thank you Gaye!),

Tell 7 things about me that readers might not know about me,

and nominate 7 more Kreativ bloggers…click for larger view

Trouvais 0001DSCN8382

1) Except for the peonies in the spring, where more is more…

I prefer scantly dressed fall and winter gardens..the surprise

of an unexpected bloom…yesterday, after the rain…

Trouvais 0001DSCN8517

2) I’m very sentimental… my husband and I bought this $20

chair on the navy pier the summer of ’86 in Chicago. We took turns

carrying it back to our apartment on our heads…still have it.


3) Fell in love with my husband at 19, married him at 29.

Once I make up my mind, though, I stick with it.

Though occasionally annoying, he still awfully cute…

Trouvais 0001DSCN8537

4) These are my favorite painting pants…

permission to get messy…

Love painting walls, furniture, canvases…

Trouvais cat and fish

5) My son took this picture of his faithful cat (no fish were harmed in the shooting of this photo)

All my pent up design ideas will keep me busy next year when my “baby” is off to college…

Trouvais 0001DSCN8469

6) Have always been a big reader (Comparative Lit major)…

favorite novelists are Falkner, James Joyce, Charlotte Bronte…

Loved Wallace Stegner’s Angle of Repose …several years ago I

neglected my kids for a full day to read it. Trying to make sure I

catch most of the top books of all time…a couple good lists here

Clear Lake 2

7) One of my favorite photos of my childhood…

I have an older and younger brother, and a little sister…

Little did she know she’d grow up to have a Belgian Garage

It’s good to remember the kid inside you…

Kreative Blogger award

Trouvais’s 7 picks for the Kreative Blogger award are

French Kissed

52 Flea

Le Divan Fumoir Bohemien

The  Duchess of Devonshire’s Gossip guide

Endless Inspiration

Plays with Needles

The Neo Lifestyle

All wonderful, with unique points of view…please visit them…

Poetically Juxtaposed…


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Trove Laguna 18th c trestle table, 19c Belgian chandelier

A few last enchanting bits from the wonderful Trove

in Laguna Beach, California

An 18th century French trestle table, below a 19th century Belgian chandelier…

Modern painting by Dennis Ekstrom…

Trove Laguna store interior

An 18th century Irish double sided, handmade, pine utilitarian cupboard here

possibly used as room divider, doors on front and back, handmade nails.

Adjustable Belgian antique oak architect’s table c. 1910

19th century American oil portrait.

Trove Laguna store Architect's model of Chateau

Architect’s model of French Chateau…

Trove Laguna window display

Important reclining chaise lounge chair

Paris, France c.  1920-1926.

Brass plaque under proper right swing arm:

“Le surrepos du Dr. Pascuad”

Purportedly, this was the chaise that directly inspired

Le Corbusier’s famous Chaise Lounge


Trove Laguna antique french campaign chair c. 1870

Antique French campaign chair…

c. 1870

Trove Laguna late 19th c phonograph horn chandeliers

A trio of phonograph horn chandeliers

late 19th century

Trove Laguna new bronze line with Belgian horsehair satchel

This is part of Trove’s new bronze line, table base modeled after an ancient Chinese root …

Atop sits an18th century traveling trunk made of horsehair, hand stitched, with

a hand forged lock…found in Belgium…


Though Trove has been around for several years, has a wonderful collection of

estimable antiques, riveting one of a kind finds, and a masterful artistic mix of objects

“poetically juxtaposed”, it really seems to illustrate to me the “Rough Luxe” trend

that was written about here….It’s definitely a trend I love.


Scroll down for more Trove in yesterday’s post…


The Shop Talk interview at 1stdibs here

has additional photos and background story on

store owners Heather and Bobby Lee

Rough Luxe in Laguna Beach…


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Trove Laguna.7


French aviary c. 1910-1920

This store just makes my heart beat a little faster…

Located in Laguna beach, California,

it pairs wonderful patina laden, one of a kind antiques

with quirky, “where did you get that”  finds…

Just look at the rolling back of this stripped to the jute…

Trove 3

Louis XIII style canape from 1920′s France…

still stuffed with original horsehair…


Trove Laguna.pair antique french sconces

One gorgeous arm of a pair of massive French sconces from the 1930′s


Trove Laguna chairs on work table

Déshabille (“undressed”) French chairs on a worktable in the show room…

Trove Laguna religious artifact lamb detail

Detail of lamb on architectural fragment from a French church

Second quarter of 19th century…


Married store owners Heather and Bobby travel extensively to furnish their

six year old store with Swedish, Belgian and French antiques, and one of a kind

foundry cast tables and stools… softening the rough edges with luxurious

mohair throws, hand-made Astier de Villatte, antique French linens,

19th century portraits, and even bundles of hand made paper…

Astier in store at Trove Laguna

Astier de Villatte in situ at the store…

Trove Laguna 18th century assorted Astier de Villatte stacked plates in store

Heather told me that the store originated as an antique jewelry, antique clothing,

antique smalls shop and morphed into what it is now, when a larger space became

available a block north of their original shop on the North Coast Highway in beach

heavy Southern California. Their last buying trip was to Belgium, where they

were lucky enough to get a tour of Vervoordt’s castle and Kanaal, which she

called major inspirations. They’ll be heading to Belgium/UK in a few months.

Trove Laguna French leather club chairs in store

Leather club chairs from France are highlighted by one of Trove’s

incredible hand-loomed mohair throws from Finland

that pick up the vibrant turquoise of the antique Swedish cupboard…

Huge range of colors available here

Trove Laguna 18th century Swedish cupboard in store

Close up of the Swedish cupboard,

carved sculpture still emerging from the stone …

Trove Laguna Swedish Rococo style chairs c. 1750-1760

In an atmospheric dark corner of the store, a pair of antique Swedish

c. 1750 chairs pull up to one of Trove’s many antique tables…

This c. 1790 French table has a tripod trestle base with beautiful

worn oval top. Top comes off and trestle base folds shut.


antiquehorn shaving mirror 2 TroveAntique Victorian shaving mirror…

See more Trove in my Naturalism post here

or my Simply Sublime post here

Trove Laguna original

Trove’s unique solid bronze horn table or stool,

an antique that they had cast…

All Trove merchandise can be found at their website here

or 1stdibs site here

1233 North Coast Highway

Laguna Beach, CA



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Bed hangings

If you ever feel like crawling back to bed (or not getting out)…

How about hiding behind a few lengths of deeply embroidered silk bed drapery…?

Italian giltwood mirror c. 1880 1stdibs

Italian giltwood mirror

c. 1880


Bathrm HG

The sky is alternately damp with rain,

or cloudy, gray and still…

Every once in a while birds fly in an alarmed flurry past my windows…

1stdibs Pair of life size lighted Venetian blackamoors

Life size Venetian blackamoors



Power out last night and again most of today…

Cooked simple meals and read by candle light

All the assorted candles holders came out…

Actually a little bit wonderful…

Framing a wall…


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Wall maps

Antique map in framed segments….

House Beautiful Oct. ’08

Stephen Sills Dwellings 17

Stephen Sills

Dwellings with Style

Shubel 13

Stephen Shubel

Designer’s Paris apartment

Shubel 20

Stephen Shubel in Paris

Various French flea market finds, multiple mirrors

Shubel San Francisco Trouvais

Stephen Shubel in San Francisco…

Flea market find of framed vintage collars

Trouvais framed antique French letters

My own collection of antique French letters framed

and grouped into a set of 9 over an antique console…

When I’m not dreaming of the 18th century…


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I’m trying to figure out what color to paint my office walls. They are several shades

of blue on paneling. Love the yellow and cream Ballroom Stripe curtains. The

up to date desk has nifty features like a flip down key board drawer with segregated

storage. Love the mirror, painted it “zinc” and added a finial…set high enough for me

to imagine that its perched on a mansard roof line in Paris…the view out adjacent

windows is awash in morning sunshine, blessed by occasionally pink sunsets

over the surrounding hills…

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The great thing about baskets is that they have a “meant to do that” look about them,

even if purchased over several years. Gray boxes with labels from The Container Store…

fraught with organizational possibilities. Binders above were throw outs my sister covered with

wrapping map and script paper. Black ribbon reads French to me.

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Gathered up all my galvanized tin…it’s always easier on the eye to repeat containers

and all the odds and end can grouped. Sneaking in gratuitous shot of my daughter

Since she never looks at my blog (rolls eyes) this ought not to bother her…

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Comfortable chair in the corner by the bookcase…

Carolyn Quartermaine

Was thinking of adding a bit of Carolyn Quartermaine script to the back of the

desk chairs…anything but white to the front…

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Love the black, cream, white, gold, gray, yellow…

Post that most feels like the direction I’d like to go is Stephen Shubel in Paris here

I’m also seriously considering a gray toned French limestone floor…

and a multi framed sepia Turgo Plan de Paris map à la Pigtown Design here

Further discussed by Little Augury here



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My very own proud eggplant…

Iris Palladia Varigata in background…

Flowering kale, which are beautiful as low ornamentals for the

winter garden, or long stemmed in a vase with other foliage…

Walls painted in Ralph Lauren’s Silver City Suede SU60

Tufted back Somerville sofa George Smith sofa

George Smith on sale at One Kings Lane here

Violet cashmere throw from Calvin Klein Home

Faux horse leg bench from John Rosselli

Designer Susan Ferrier

House Beautiful Jan. ’09

French embroidered linen dyed deep amethyst

Contented cattle and purple sage in Normandy…

vintage House and Garden magazine…

Punctuation points…


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Floriferus gardens dwindle down…

even stalwarts like roses slow…

the lavender has been shorn..

Fall Japanese anenomes cast their last nod over the nepata…

And then the garden is all about outline and

punctuation points…

Love round shapes in the garden…

Mop top trees and shrubs…balls of myrtle

This is geometry taken to the extreme in a Russell Page garden…

I really like dwarf English boxwood.

Like pearls, they can trim a row, cluster in corners

with their larger boxwood cousins

or criss cross an open stone court like

in this Normandy garden…

Symmetry and shape are the elements that keep place

in the garden until the riot of flowers return…

My garden shot in the spring over the top of the grape arbor…

I like to group boxwood in different sizes, also use

conical shapes like foreground right…


One of the most respected of garden designers was Russell Page

Flip through his book here to plan a new garden

or dream your way into spring…

The Gardens of Russell Page