Archive : October 2011

31 Oct 2011
avatar Author: Colette Van Den Thillart
Creative Director

We LOVE Halloween. Trick and Treating with the girls, carved pumpkins, toffee apples and wonderful costumes. But this garden in Toronto really raises the bar!  I’m going to have to start planning Halloween 2012 ASAP in order to pip this one to the post.

If this is all too much for you, then let Bing and the Andrew Sisters serenade you into a much friendlier soothing Halloween. Happy Haunting!

28 Oct 2011
avatar Author: Colette Van Den Thillart
Creative Director

I guess it’s the Halloween thing, my dreams are darker by the day and the sun seems to be lost in a haze of gloomth.  And now I’m onto burnt beauty, full on charr.   ‘Ruthie!!’ I shout, as I often do…’I need some beautiful burnt houses tout suite!!’  ‘Seaton Delaval Hall’ she shouts back, arguably one of Vanburgh’s finest…and as envisaged by Piper in 1941, it is not only a splendid burnt ruin, but a perfect gothic teaser in that neither patron nor architect lived to see its completion. Should you find yourself in Northumberland…you can marvel at the burnt out hall yourself.  Now owned by the National Trust and opened to the public since 2010.

Sometimes I think I’ve gone a bit weird, and then find that someone has had the very same thought and gone downright commercial with it.   Like Maarten Baas with his smoke collection.

 …or Tom Sachs.  Totally want to wear this.

It all makes me think of a Rauschenberg….though not burnt, he was doing black in the 70′s, as of course was Reinhardt!!  And my favourite dining room ever was gloss black.  Come to think of it Nicky’s old sitting room when he rented Cecil Beaton’s flat was entirely black velvet.

 I remember the look in my children’s eye’s the first time I showed them how to antique paper….’emervielle‘ , that most divine of French words, is the only way to describe it.

27 Oct 2011
avatar Author: Colette Van Den Thillart
Creative Director

The days have been so dark, sleepy, Poe-like.  I’ve been dreaming in charred violet.

It’s an insanely poetic colour. And, a neutral naturally – isn’t everything?

Its possible I never got over Annie’s pic of Johnny Depp – somehow his hair, his eyes, his cheekbones – everything is scorched with violet and I think its dreamy.

Nicky and I share two Pekingese pups – called Zaza and Zephyr, who are so black they photograph violet.

And when we made these kitchen lampshades we made them charred violet instead of basic black, naturally.

Mother nature understands…she invented the idea after all.

24 Oct 2011
avatar Author: Colette Van Den Thillart
Creative Director

Are we EVER not working? NO!! So we didn’t even make it to our destination without some highbrow sourcing.

No, we didn’t buy her, but she does remind me of someone…

Love love love the old chinked walls…and I confess, we did NOT leave empty handed. More on that later…

21 Oct 2011
avatar Author: Nicky Haslam

Eliane Fattal, the stylish daughter of that generous patron of the arts and legendary fashion icon Jill Rittblat, has been asked by those diamond geezers S.J. Phillips, the Bond Street jewellers, to sift through their vast holdings of antique jewellery and reform it into uniquely fabulous pieces, a very sensible concept as many of these old jewels are somewhat dated, but reworked by Eliane they become brilliantly modern. Vast Edwardian hair ornaments of tremblant dragonflies and skittering swallows, bugs and animals have become flamboyant, often surreal, rings and bracelets or mismatched earrings, and the subtle thing is that many of them are craftily made so they can be unscrewed and worn in a different way.

In this photo, Eliane is wearing her first and favourite creation—and the first to be snapped up— an antique diamond frog sitting on a huge pavé emerald lily pad made by Phillips especially for Fattal’s collection. 

Some are even more whimsical like these spectacles I am wearing in the photo. A pair of 1920s diamond-studded onyx Cartier belt buckles are joined with an opulently onyx-set diamond ring. Francis Norton, co-owner of this treasure house, says he will put lenses in when you buy them…..probably of finely-honed rock crystal if I know Phillips.

The fashionistas are flocking. The Spectator’s anything-but Agony Aunt  Mary Killen fancied a diamond kitty to litter her finger, and Vanity Fair’s Elizabeth Saltzman has commissioned a turtle to toddle up her pinkie.

What’s more these pieces, each one signed by Eliane, are exquisitely presented in emerald-leather-bound ‘books’ rather than trad velveteen boxes, designed, like the exhibition itself, by the sought-after film set-decorator Michael Howells.