Thursday, February 5, 2009

Samarkand Bliss

It's raining.  A drizzly, implacable London rain making a guest appearance in Hollywood. Fog everywhere, looming over the Kodak Theater and the Capitol Records Tower.  I'm waiting for Ricardo, my wonderful curtain guy, to come over and hang my Peter Dunham "Samarkand" living room curtains. 
I chose the colorway above because my walls are painted Farrow and Ball's "Green Blue" and I wanted them to be a subtle backdrop to the rest of the room.  Goodness knows I have enough going on in there already.

For an entire year now, I've been avoiding photographing the windows.  I either crop them out of frame or have people move away from them whenever I take a picture.  Very occasionally, they make it into a shot.  
See what I mean?  They're big barren spaces of nothingness.  When we moved in a year ago, the previous owner had left some voluminous swagged "Gone with the Wind" curtains that resembled ball gowns from an antebellum Bette Davis movie.  I'm sure they cost a fortune, but they didn't work.  Underneath were the slatted blinds, so we've been living with those ever since. 

Doorbell.  Excuse me.

(One hour later)

Ricardo works fast.  I'm back.  They're up.  I'm ecstatic.  They completely change the whole room, don't you think?
I specifically chose cornices over curtain rods because I wanted to add some height and drama to the room.  Plus, I like the feeling of traditional coziness they provide.  When the curtains are closed, you can see the lovely border along the inside edge which emphasizes their verticality.
I think the pattern's large scale works as an effective backdrop to the room: expansive enough to add texture but subtle enough not fight with the other patterns.  I couldn't be happier. We're having a dinner party on Saturday. Maybe we can eat in the living room.


For those of you who may be heading to LA soon, do yourself a favor and stop by Peter's beautiful store, Hollywood at Home.  It's one of my favorite places in the world, and is such a wonderful showcase for the brilliant interior and fabric design that Peter does so well.  The vibe is glamorous, aristo-bohemian, globe-trotting chic.  (Think Jackie Onassis in Jaipur or Jemima Khan in St. Tropez.)  If you're lucky enough to see him there, be sure to say hello, as he and his welcoming staff are as kind a set of people as you're ever likely to meet. 

18 comments:

Lee said...

Wow! Your curtains look amazing. The cornice really does add height, and the colours go so beautifully with the walls. I'm green/blue with envy.

Meg said...

Wow, they made a huge difference and look FANTASTIC!!! I'm not overly traditional, but the cornice goes perfectly in your space and looks amazing!!

mary said...

beautiful fabric, perfect treatment and an amazing transformation......I think you need a party.

Bart Boehlert said...

OMG those are beautiful curtains. I LOVE paisley, but you know that. Like how the curtains contrast with the room, not matchy matchy.
Where did you live in the West Village? TD and I lived on Jane Street for 19 years and now are on West 15th.
BB

Marybeth said...

I agree with Mary, you need to host a party. Curtains are so fine. I am green with envy. As my father-in -law would say... they are jolly good.

Lisa Borgnes Giramonti said...

To all: I would love nothing more to have a house party with all you fine people!

Bart: I lived on Horatio Street for a while, and also on Greenwich St. between Charles and Perry. I also lived on 17th between 5th and 6th, right next to Da Umberto.

Mrs Havercamp said...

The curtains are fabulous! How perfect in your house. Thank you for the before and after shots. I am so enjoying your new blog...the mix of literary and design musings is sublime! Oh, and so is the Rose petal jam. Would love to see more pics of your house, and if not too populist, your views on the film Slum Dog Millionaire, due to all of your travel/reading in India. Thanks for the fun/educational daily read! xo Mrs. H

two hippos said...

I love you new curtains, the pelmet is perfect too. Its funny to hear of London rain in Hollywood, I always think of blue sky and sunshine.

Jill said...

They look beautiful...that fabric is one of my favorites. I have a client/friend who is hesitant to add drapery...it makes such a difference. I'm going to show her your blog.

C.T. said...

..jada jada jada...

Doorbell. Excuse me.

That part made me laugh till my stomach hurt. I do not know why.

Anywayyy...Love your interiour even without the beautiful curtains!! But okay, you're right, it adds a bit mor cozyness.

Laura said...

Oh, so perfect! You made an excellent choice with the cornices. And aristo-bohemian chic? Such a great descriptor! I've been trying to think of a way to describe such a style (my personal favorite) for ages. By the way, is that pillow on your chaise that Vivian Westwood design? I'm so jealous! My boyfriend is British and I've been searching for one for him for ages.

Susan's Snippets said...

Lisa -

I am fortunate enough to work across the street from Chicago's Merchandise Mart...where I get to see fabulous patterns/colors and styles! I LOVE Farrow and Ball paint (they have a shop inside the MM) and the fabric you choose works perfectly in that room.

your guests will swoon

Courtney said...

If your doorbell rings again, it's me. Coming to take in every corner of your house because I'm completely and utterly obsessed. LOVE what the curtains did to that room!!! Looks fabulous.

Ms. Wis./Each Little World said...

Sorry, if the doorbell rings again it will be me! Love the curtains, but I spy that pillow with the beaded branch of coral that I didn't buy. May I borrow yours?

Style Court said...

Well, you know I'm jealous! Not a very sophisticated comment but these are to-die-for, Lisa. Really one of my favorite prints.

Your choice is splendid. And I agree, Peter and Joel are such gentlemen!

Style Court said...

Also, I'm slinking this in my Blue-Green post :)

Mrs. Blandings said...

Stunning. What fun. Your dinner party is guaranteed success as the hostess will be so happy.

Joslyn said...

absolutely gorgeous...stunning, stunning, stunning.

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