Monday, March 2, 2009

Home is where the Art is

This Saturday night, Luca was invited to spend the night at his friend Augie's house. He was unduly excited, and so was I. The last time he was there, I had spotted the most breathtakingly bohemian set of sofas I had ever seen and was obsessed with photographing them for this blog. Augie's parents kindly agreed, so we both showed up at their front door promptly at 4 pm.

This first photo gives you a sense of the charm of their house. So many of the elements I consider essential in creating a successful room are here:  hearth, history, humor and the homemade. 

It reminds me a bit of Charleston House, home to the Bloomsbury Group, with its highly personal mix of art and eccentricity.  

(The Studio, Charleston House, photographed by Allen MacWeeney)

In a brainstorm to add some personality to a pair of second-hand George Smith sofas, Augie and his sister Lulu were set loose on them with a basket of colored Sharpies. That's right.  As in "permanent marker."  I think the results are nothing short of genius. 

If I was a curator in the Textile Department at the V&A Museum, I would create a show around them called "Home is where the Art is."  And if I was Todd Selby, I would hotfoot it over here pronto.


On this section, a lovely sentiment embraces you when you sit down.

And over here, you can make out the self-portraits of the artists. 

I can't think of a more endearing way to preserve and commemorate childhood. Over time, these graffitied designs will become even more meaningful. Just like works of art, they fit in every kind of decor and would look just as stunning in a modern home as they do here in a more traditional setting.  

Most of the big online stores carry a version of sofa or chair available in white cotton, or you can always recover a piece you currently own.  

Right now I have Luca's artwork displayed on his closet door, but they're sadly beginning to warp and curl. I may have to go buy him a set of Sharpies this week and have him create his own graphic ode to youth.

Postscript:  Augie's mother called me at 6:30 am Sunday morning to tell me that Luca had thrown up twice the night before.  I'm slightly ashamed to admit it, but my first thought was, "Please, please, not on the sofas!"

(They were fine.)  

21 comments:

kelly jo said...

LOVE IT! and thanks to mr. peacock, fyi http://www.nomadsandhousewives.blogspot.com/

Jill said...

What wonderfully fun parents they must be!

Mrs. Blandings said...

Completely wonderful - and wonderful children, too. I fear mine would have drawn three Stars Wars ships and been ready to move on. You should decoupage your son's drawings on something - they are terrific.

catbird said...

i am officially obsessed with this idea. i think i saw it somewhere in domino as well. it is perfection. (irony noted, but not intended.)

thegardenofpinkshadows said...

those sofas are fantastic - thanks for showing the on your blog!

Laura [What I Like] said...

This country needs more parents (and children!) like these...creative, free spirited, open and willing to let things unfold. So inspiring!

pve design said...

That is what I love about blogging - all these ideas thrown up, oops I mean out.
Those couches look well loved on.

Susan's Snippets said...

Lisa - The idea takes some creatively open and very brave parents!!

Sorry to hear about Luca's bad belly. My son had a bad belly on Saturday night, but for a much different reason.

21 year old drinking season

read about him here: http://susanssnippets.blogspot.com/2009/02/at-427-am.html

Tavarua said...

How great is this idea - fantastic I just love these sofas. I should let my two boys have an artistic day on the sofas here at home ..hmmmm This is pure fun and creation.....and Your blog is pure inspiration.

jezebel said...

One of my dearest childhood memories is being allowed to draw on our walls with my brothers, albeit right before the house got a fresh paint job. This is the absolute sweetest graffiti job I've ever seen.

Glenda said...

What a new twist in custom made to order. I think it's a brilliant idea.

Ciao

miss cavendish said...

These are gorgeous! And do Sharpies really, truly not rub off on one's clothing?

thecreme said...

How completely awesome. They had something very similar in the NYTimes a couple of months ago. Since I have no kids do you think it would be totally weird if my husband and I went at it with a box of sharpies one lazy Sunday afternoon???

Or you could do a wall, a small side wall, totally do it up with color! So many ideas....

Lisa Borgnes Giramonti said...

MissCavendish: In my experience from "graffiti-ing" dinosaurs onto a pair of my son's old Levi's, Sharpies are totally indelible.

TheCreme: Kids are optional. I'm itching to upholster a long bench in white cotton and scrawl the first page of my favorite novel on it.

catbird said...

here is an impressive use of home decorating with a Sharpie, to say the least:
http://www.kentucky.com/147/story/532854.html

Lisa Borgnes Giramonti said...

Catbird: That is insanely amazing!

alex Fawcett said...

Wow, I cannot get over those sofa's. Truly genius idea. I adore every bit of them like custom fabric. There are so many ways you could go with this.
thank you!

Style Court said...

brilliant :)

Britt said...

Love Love Love this!

TheDecoDetective said...

I think I've seen these somewhere before; in an online newspaper? Or it might have been someone with a similar idea. I love it. I'm too much of a sissy to paint on my own furniture even if I'm a grown-up. I think I have to work on that after seeing this.

Wendy said...

Hey, someone should submit this to the Sharpie blog. They have a great blog.

I love those sofas! Like other commenter I wonder about my level of bravery -- but maybe I'll start with some throw pillows or pillow covers!

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