Chateau de Villette- The Splendor of French Decor

facade of Chateau de Villette as seen on www.CourtneyPrice.com

Chateau de Villette- The Splendor of French Decor

You are not going to believe your eyes when you see the breathtaking mid-seventeenth-century chateau outside of Paris that I am about to show you…. 

Chateau de Villette- The Splendor of French Decor, written by Guillaume Picon and photographed by Bruno Ehrs, is one of the most beautiful books on French decorative arts and design that I have ever seen. The history of both the chateau and its owners is fascinating, and its thoughtful restorations have ensured a consistent place en vogue.

Original construction took place from 1663–69, with architecture attributed to Francois Mansart and his great-nephew, chief architect of Louis XV, Jules Hardouin-Mansart. At this time, new chateau styles were developing as practical or strategic military elements were no longer necessary- opening the way for Le Notre to design elaborate gardens and outdoor vistas.

The extravagant interiors reflect the then-new mindset of the Rococo era – designed with more permanence and elegance.  Bedchambers, previously ceremonial, were designed be private spaces of comfort in the eighteenth century. Tables were no longer brought to the bedchambers for dining. Stand-alone dining rooms were an eighteenth-century innovation, and in Chateau de Villette is the first formal dining room in a French chateau. [Read more…]

STONE HOUSES: Natural Forms in Historic and Modern Homes

Stone Houses by Linda Leigh Paul, reviewed on www.CourtneyPrice.com

STONE HOUSES: Natural Forms in Historic and Modern Homes

By Linda Leigh Paul

Linda Leigh Paul has published another beautiful design book- of contemporary stone properties that are anything BUT predictable. Stone Houses gives us the kind of eye candy that would encourage us to slow down, savor the experience, and perhaps revisit architectural details from previous chapters.  Paul’s compilation of almost thirty modern spaces span the world, highlighting architects who put stone to work in innovative ways, in homes that we would not otherwise have access to. Architecture fans and anyone who is considering a new-build or remodel might want to shop architects she included in this book. Mostly privately owned, the high-end homes on this insider tour are not to be missed:

[Read more…]

Strawberries Pompidou

Perfect make-ahead Summer Dessert on the blog- Strawberries Pompidou - www.CourtneyPrice.com

This elaborate looking torte is a great make-ahead dish for entertaining. Everything about this wheat-free dessert will surprise and delight, from the

light almond torte base to the glorious not too sweet flavor that might make you think you are eating the work of a European pastry chef. This is a great option to serve anyone on wheat-free diet. [Read more…]

Charlotte Moss Entertains: Celebrations and Everyday Occasions

Charlotte Moss Entertains- beautiful book reviewed on www.CourtneyPrice.com

Summer entertaining season has officially launched and Charlotte Moss’ tenth book, Charlotte Moss Entertains: Celebrations and Everyday Occasions, is just the inspiration we need. This magnificent 288 page book makes it at once obvious that living well should be an every day event rather than an occasional celebration. Every day offers the opportunity to practice the art of gracious living — whether we are planning a fancy dinner party, breakfast in bed, lunch on the screened porch, or even enjoying a peaceful solitary “moment in between”.

Moss clarifies that the details of entertaining may be work, but they are certainly not a chore because one of life’s greatest pleasures includes building relationships and deepening friendships – which often happens around food and drink.

Let’s take a look at some of the components of Moss’ entertaining DNA: [Read more…]

Artist Spotlight: Mark McDowell

Mark McDowell lighing and furniture as seen on www.CourtneyPrice.com

Every surface of the room is McDowell’s canvas, and he’ll even provide the lighting.

Mark McDowell’s case good pieces are sculptural, his choice of materials inspired, and his style always evolving. This award-winning designer is surprisingly modest for his level of talent. He is not one to look back on his breathtaking accomplishments in a self-congratulatory way; his focus is always about eighteen months into the future, onto the next collection. As he designed this latest collection and considered how his pieces will play out in a room, he visualized and then actualized paintings to complement the pieces. Five of his paintings graced the walls of the John-Richard showroom during April High Point market, and those very five paintings sold immediately.  Giclee reproductions are available for purchase.

Mark McDowell’s latest collection ushers in a new wave of luxury penthouse style with warm woods, textural finishes, Moroccan patterns and Asian influences (which are a nod to his Japanese heritage). Seduced by the beauty in the details, his innovative style respectfully pushes traditional and contemporary boundaries. His handsome collection appeals to a discerning collector –  with form that graces function using metals and sensuous finishes which include antique brass, pebble shagreen, stunning woods. His latest collection for John-Richard includes over 75 floor and table lamps, 50 furniture items, and 15 chandeliers and sconces.

Let’s take a look at some of my favorites:  [Read more…]