Saturday, May 28, 2011


Piero Fornasetti was a renaissance man of the 20th century. Sculptor, painter, interior decorator and engraver, Fornasetti's signature designs are reminiscent of fine lined engravings using  repeatedly the face of opera singer Lina Cavalieri.

Antiquariato photo
Piero's son, Barnaba, now runs the business and keeps the family home in Milan going.

Antiquariato photo
The April issue of Antiquariato magazine featured the interiors of the Milan home of the Fornasetti family.

Antiquariato photo

Fornasetti used his home as a canvas for his creativity. Here, he worked out the designs and style of his decorative items. Geometric lines combined with black and white engraved faces became synonymous with Fornasetti.

Antiquariato photo
The Fornasetti products are still recreated by hand using patterns created by Piero.

Antiquariato photo

He was a master at using found objects combined with a pop of color.

Antiquariato photo
Don't you love the applique look of the chair and desk?

Antiquariato photo
How about the dizzying combination of mosaic floor and patterned walls?


This is essential Fornasetti.  The faux three dimensional rug paired with found objects and a fanciful chest. Do you own any Fornasetti?

Saturday, May 21, 2011


Stripes! Although not new, I seem to see a trend emerging of big, bold stripes in many types of products.

Paul Smith is synonymous with stripes. Getting his inspiration from maps of metro and subway lines, he uses them in his signature pieces. I took this photo while in London visiting one of the Paul Smith Globe shops.

I had to purchase the leather striped sandals while there of course!

Built is another brand that is synonymous with rows of graphic stripes. I own the neoprene lunch bag and a couple of camera cases.

I just got these cute little speakers today. They are made by Eco Nation in a wonderful brown and blue stripe!  Even my purse linings are striped! Are you attracted to striped accessories? If so, what products do you use in your daily life?

Saturday, May 14, 2011


Helen Morris is one of the most creative women I know. She not only runs possibly the largest stencil company in the world, she manages to maintain a blog...and help me with personal advice when I am stuck on an art issue! Recently, Helen helped me with a fashion dilemma I had. I was attending an international art conference and needed something creative to wear. I found a great artist smock in London, but they did not have a way to buy them on line. I contacted Helen to possibly run by and pick it up for me. The store was able to ship to me and Helen did not have to go out of her way. I received the smock and sent pictures to Helen as I started the process of making it a little more custom. Helen thought it was interesting enough to make it a post on her blog-Design Inspiration.  I hope you enjoy the story behind my artist smock! Thanks Helen!

Monday, May 9, 2011


It's a small that we have the internet!  Recently, my friend Regina Garay of Fauxology, posted a link to Buzz Kaplan's word of the day-Cassapanca.

He posted these fabulous examples of a vintage cassapanca, a decorative bench with a back and a storage seat.

Italian in origin, cassapancas were usually large in scale and highly decorative.


Finding a cassapanca on an auction site is not as easy as it might seem.


They are a rare find and usually cost several thousand dollars.


This one is not as elaborate as most, but shows the variety in style.

Italian artist Alison Woolley of Florence Art painted this wonderful example of a cassapanca.

I love this black one! Most seem to be done in earth pigments or lighter in color.


When you "google" the word cassapanca, many times it wants to substitute "cassablanca"!
The backs of the cassapancas are made of flat wood to fit against the wall and not take up a lot of floor space. The wood is cut into decorative shapes and given dimension through trompe l'oeil painting.


As decorative as they are, I could not help posting this bench as well! Do you own a unique bench? I have my eyes out for a vintage Italian cassapanca!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

The Power of Paint...

Paint is a powerful thing! You can do magic or...mishap!

This is what I walked in to when I began this job.   Very dark walls, almost black ceiling and dark columns.

With the dark floors, the room absorbed all natural light through the too dark walls and ceiling.

The columns were boxed out and I re-floated the walls and brought in a creamy palette.

The niche needed some interest, so a decorative element was introduced.

The walls were embossed with a damask design mimicking some fabrics in the furniture.

The niche added a pop of color helping to balance the built-in underneath.

It still amazes me what paint can do! The built-in became a custom piece of furniture with the magic of paint!

The new columns were given a soft, antiqued design to compliment the walls.

Now the room tells a story! Light is not an issue and the red pop of color balances the new chairs and rug. Paint can make or break a room....never underestimate the power of paint!!
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