Posts Tagged: Baker Furniture


“Where Muses Dwell” was the theme of this year’s highly anticipated LEGENDS windows. 67 designers were invited to present the person, place, era or object that is their muse (or source of inspiration) in the windows of the LCDQ storefronts. For the first time, a contest was held to vote of the best window in three categories.  When looking at the windows, I considered the following criteria…the uniqueness of the idea, the execution of the concept, and the overall aesthetics of the space. The window designers outdid themselves in terms of creativity and originality. The competition was heated with even Kris Kardashian Jenner joining in promoting her favorite designer on social media. A special thank you to all of my friends who rallied the troops to vote! All of the windows can be viewed by clicking here.

Here are the winners and several other windows that caught my eye…



Fuller & Roberts


Fuller Roberts


Hollyhock-Sam Allen

Sam Allen

46 The Rug Company_Julia Buckingham copy

Julia Buckingham


Betsy Burnham


Kristin Buckingham




Young Huh


Andy Warhol


Phillip Gorivan


Madcap Cottage

Marc Phillips Amy Meier

Amy Meier

Compas-Timothy Corrigan

Timothy Corrigan

Sherle Wagner-Cami Wright Cami Wright Dragonette-Cliff Fong Cliff Fong Hollywood at Home-Nicky Kehoe Nicky Kehoe Arteriors Windsor Smith Windsor SmithNathan Turner Serena and Lilly

Serena and Lilly


2015 Legends Ambiance-0106-L



More is more, less is a bore. – Robert Venturi


For all of the maximalists out there, High Point Fall Market was heaven!  Bold, colorful, attention grabbing pieces took center stage signaling a lovely return for a more optimistic outlook for the future of design.

Having pulled out of the great recession, consumers seem to be enjoying a return to “more is more” and “big is better”. Almost a celebration, it is perhaps the desire to distance ourselves from the last ten years of financial woes. We are seeing displays of maximalism everywhere—jewelry, watches, fashion. Even homes are returning to their larger proportions with square footage trends back to all time highs. Such displays of wealth are making a comeback, and this fall Century pays homage to this moment with a lobby full of bold patterns, rich textures and jewel tone finishes. Indeed a sensory playground, it is amazing how much punch can be packed into one room!-Century Furniture



Century Furniture set the tone with their private elevator upholstered in Schumacher’s bold Chiang Mai print. Their showroom sparkled with a mixture of glamorous finishes such as brass, lacquered surfaces and lucite. Updating a traditional form with a modern flair, their high-backed chair (also upholstered in Chiang Mai) on lucite legs was the first piece seen in the entry continuing the theme from the elevator.


559_303_691695_fm12_mediumA stunning dining with a malachite top and lucite and brass base takes on many different personalities with customization options. It is equally as stunning in an oxbood red top with a black lacquer base.

i3_44_1046_0314_mediumDesign icon Windsor Smith designed this beautiful tete-a-tete which is almost 6 feet in diameter.  It is a perfect sculptural object for any room or grand hall. Here it is shown in a subdued grey with cream legs but can be customized in any finish or fabric for maximum impact.

marcphillips carpet

Rugs are often thought of as art for the floor. This silk /wool abstract rug from Marc Phillips certainly makes a statement. The collection is a tribute to action painting and characterized by being both naughty and smart, the same combination the artist Jurgen Dahlmanns likes in people.


I have used this image in a previous post, but these colorful patchwork hide rugs from Madisons were absolutely DIVINE and I cannot wait to use them in a future project.

chestKindel’s brilliant blue lacquered Westbury dressing chest is from the Dorothy Draper Collection. Originally designed by the design icon in 1939, it still feels chic and modern today. The chest is punctuated with beautiful brass detailing highlighting the curves of the legs and hardware.


Brass continued to be a dominant trend in many collections.  Bernhardt employed jewelry like detailing in several pieces from this bookcase to cabinetry hardware.


Catherine M. Austin Interior Design/ Bernhardt

The cerulean blue leather and brass chairs had a 70s/ Halston-esque vibe that is both dazzling and sophisticated.


Introduced at last market, the bold brass bed only comes in a king so the scale and proportion of the bed are spot on.

tableIn another brilliant designer/ manufacturer collaboration, Jamie Drake created gorgeous pieces for Theodore Alexander that reflect his eye for unique and exuberant detail. His eclectic juxtaposition of materials is seen in this cocktail table composed of lustrous brass orbs and a gorgeous veined stone top.

Catherine M. Austin Interior Design/ Taylor Burke

The Petite Kelly Brass Cocktail Table from Taylor Burke Home looked like an Op Art painting with its Mirth Studio tiles used as the top. The London Tufted Ottoman in hot pink velvet in the background is equally as bold.


Laura Kirar’s new collection for Baker Furniture was inspired by her travels as well as her evolving art and design. She is known as a designer with the soul of an artist. The modern channel low backed Helena sectional blends beautifully with a grouping of her Jade Accent Tables.

Even the accessories took on a more is more flavor. Sklo Studio debuted their join and mantle vessels. The join vessels are composed of two separate cylinders fused together while hot.  The color combinations are complimentary and the palette bright. The mantle vessels are organic spherical shapes with overlapping triple color schemes of two opaque colors cupping a third transparent color void. They are then given a thick outer layer of clear crystal making them appear to float.

Please contact the design studio if you are interested in design services or any of the works seen here.

For more of my design inspiration, please follow along on Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter and subscribe to Bespoke Banter….Thanks for reading!


“Dan’s work is like a piano sonata. One hand is architecture, the other decorating. Together, beautiful music is made.” – Norman Askins, architect
Last night, the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art honored legendary designer Dan Carithers at its annual Shutze awards dinner.  The event honors the achievements and contributions of those preserving and advancing the classical tradition. I began my design career interning for this extraordinarily talented man thanks to Heather Zarrett Dewberry, another uber talented designer working for Dan at the time. (Be sure to see Heather’s work featured in Traditional Home this month!) 
Working in Dan’s office with such a talented group of creatives was very inspiring. Even when Dan was not in the office travelling to see clients or advising for Baker Furniture, his work ethic and standard of excellence permeated the atmosphere thanks to Judy Bentley, another brilliant designer and Dan’s trusted right hand.
I had no idea at the time how many doors this experience would open for me. I also had no idea how much I would learn in such a short amount of time…the nuances of neutrals (who knew there were so many variations of cream and taupe?!?), the importance of understated flowers and dressmaker details, blending high end antiques with more humble everyday objects, and the list goes on and on…

Congratulations Mr. Carithers on such a well deserved honor!!!

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Read below for a fabulous article on Dan’s contribution to the design world and  a gallery of my favorite interiors designed by Dan throughout his career…


Celebrated designer Dan Carithers retired last fall. And while the shuttered doors of his firm’s headquarters in the tony enclave at 2300 Peachtree Road is a physical reminder that one of the country’s leading design talents has handed the baton to a new generation of talent that he helped nurture, the closure is symbolic of the sea change taking place within the design community at large; the type of personal decorating that Carithers defined over a 50-year career is the last of an era.
The boy who grew up in small town Jefferson, Georgia, first gained notoriety as the design director for home furnishings at Rich’s Department Store. Along with the job came international travel, which allowed Carithers to expose generations of Atlantans to the latest home fashions and antiques from London and Paris and beyond. Decorated room vignettes, much like a room in any home, were changed twice a year at the downtown location and were events in themselves as shoppers flocked to see the latest trends.
After launching his own firm, Carithers also established a long-time consulting position with Baker Furniture, and created an eponymous high-end upholstery line with Sherrill Furniture that’s still in production.
As much as decorating was his first and foremost job, Carithers also served as a pseudo-educator to his clients. As their families (and, often, wealth) grew, Carithers was at the ready to take them to the next level appropriate to their lifestyles—whether that was starting from scratch with a new house design, adding an art collection or aiding in the purchase of a fine antique or two.
His matter-of-fact demeanor with clients seems simplistic in its approach, but in the age of super-star designers and architects looking to make their own statements at the risk of unsatisfied clients, Carithers never waned in his client-first approach.
“The first thing I always asked a client was ‘what do you want,’” says Carithers during a recent interview. “And when some clients said they didn’t want clutter, I’d ask them to define the word. After all, some rooms deserve clutter.” The timeless, elegant rooms (and galas and yachts) that Carithers created for clients across the world captured the keen eyes of editors of design magazines such asVeranda, House Beautiful, Traditional Home and Southern Accents. In 2003, Carithers was named one of House Beautiful’s “Giants of Design”—the highest honor bestowed by the magazine; it’s only been given to a handful of honorees during its 100-year history.
“We were fortunate to feature Dan’s work many times over Southern Accents’ 32 years,” says author and journalist Karen Carroll, the magazine’s former Editor in Chief. “One of my first assignments as a very junior—and very green—editor was to produce a story on Dan and Nancy’s wedding reception. It was an intimate luncheon at the home of a friend and all the tables were decorated with Dan’s signature beige-and-white striped linen cloths, casual garden flowers and objects that had special significance for the couple. It perfectly summed up Dan’s approach to decorating and living a beautiful life: to always surround yourself with the people and the things that have meaning. The day remains a favorite memory for me.
“Years and many houses photographed later, I recall another designer begging me to move one of her projects from a particular issue, as she knew Dan was also to be included and she feared she would have no shot at being on the cover. She was right.”
Signature Style

 Brown & white
Detailed table settings
Excellent mixture of old & new
Faux-painted floors
Round skirted tables for dining
White orchids or flowers
 (no rosebuds or other flowers with a bud)
Custom rugs
Detailed lampshades and window treatments
Toile fabrics
Natural fabrics, especially linens
Michelle Erickson Pottery
Stone figures in gardens
Boxwoods—his greatest passion is gardening
from those who know him best
 “Dan’s knowledge of antiques is unparalleled. Compromise is not in his
vocabulary. As a result, his clients have incredible collections of antiques.” 

—Barry Hutner, owner of Parc Monceau Antiques
ABOVE Recently, Dan, joined by his wife, Nancy, was saluted by 20 of his former assistants who worked for him over the years. Many have gone on to establish their own successful design businesses. FRONT ROW, left to rightAngela Bromenschenkel, Heather Dewberry, Lee Kleinhelter, Margaret Kirkland, Susan Joy McElheney, Susan Dowhower, Karen Raymer MIDDLE ROW Nancy Carithers, Dan Carithers, Judy Bentley, Nora Miller, Kelley RiddleBACK ROW, left to right Annabeth Tidwell, Will Huff, Amy Spivey, Elizabeth Bennett, Elizabeth Smith, Austin Mann, Lori Tippins, Caroline Willis, Maryanna Marks, Susan Brad
 “Dan was thinking about leaving Rich’s and I had to encourage him to lease his first space; obviously, it was a great decision.”  —Jane Marsden, owner of Jane Marsden Antiques
“Dan has more talent in his little finger than most people have in their whole body.” —Hal Ainsworth and Winton Noah, owners of Ainsworth-Noah & Associates
 “Dan is a master of furniture placement; he creates the unexpected without it feeling forced. He is a genius of the art of the eclectic interior, creating rooms that feel like they have been collected over a number of years, blending contemporary paintings, antiques and local craft. Plus, he is the only man I know who can carry off an ascot in Atlanta, Georgia.” —D. Stanley Dixon, architect
“Dan has exquisite taste and tremendous style, which is evident both in his personal life and his design projects. His legendary wit and ability to spin a wonderful story, his love of family and friends, his passion for books, travel, museums and life clearly define his being. It is a privilege to call him my friend.” —Elizabeth Allen, client
“To work with the extraordinarily talented Dan Carithers is not only an honor, but a fun and wonderful learning experience full of laughter, thousands of anecdotes and great friendship. An amazing adventure!” —Elizabeth Holt, client
“Dan’s work is like a piano sonata. One hand is architecture, the other decorating. Together, beautiful music is made.” —Norman Askins, architect
“In 1966, a tall, skinny Southern gentleman walked into my shop and thus began my ‘charmed’ relationship with one of the masters of great taste.” —Herbie Schinderman, owner Ann-Morris Antiques, New York
“Dan Carithers is a true genius in the field of design and a great inspiration to designers nationwide.” —Tom Hayes and Toby West, owners of Tom Hayes/Toby West Ltd.
“When I think of Dan Caithers, I think of a giant panda of talent, but most of all I think of the beauty and friendship he has brought to my life.” —Mary B. Schwab, client
“He put Atlanta and the South on the map as a Decorative World. I love his quick wit and fast, creative mind; plus, he can walk and talk faster than anyone!” —Judy Bentley, former client and colleague of nine years
“Dan’s work is simply magical. What we cherish most is the friendship and camaraderie that has evolved over 16 years.  Dan is a real treasure and we are blessed to have him in our lives.”—Tommy Spinosa, client
“The first time my mother mentioned Dan to me, I was pregnant with my first child. My husband and I had started building our dream home and I soon realized I could not do it alone. Ten years and four children later, Dan was there for all the milestones: moving into our ‘grown up’ house, planning the nurseries that would gradually become ‘big boy’ or ‘big girl’ rooms, the huge stuffed moose he gave my son for Christmas, the delicate china plates that hang in my baby daughter’s room he found for her, teaching me fabulous ways to entertain, suggesting the perfect place for the Christmas tree, and on and on. Creating this wonderful nest for our family is one of the greatest gifts one could give. Dan did it and does it with such ease, grace and humor. Every single room in our home has happy memories of Dan. He even expressed the importance of a good-looking garage! ‘After all, it is the way you come in every day and should be beautiful!’ he said. I am honored to have worked with him for so many years and during such pivotal times in our lives. He is ingrained into our house, our family and my heart forever.” —Melissa Allen, client

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