Posts Tagged: Kelly Wearstler


11,500,000 square feet of exhibition space, 2000 vendors representing 100 countries, and 180 buildings in 4 days…

See what caught my eye at High Point Market.

Catherine M. Austin Interior Design/ Louise Gaskill

Lighting is like the jewelry of the room.  Without proper pieces that sparkle and shine, the room does not feel complete. In the same way a fine painting or antique can elevate everything else in the room, exquisite lighting can do the same. Each of these finds is a work of art based on craftsmanship and the inspiration behind each piece.

The pink lamps above are by Louise Gaskill who creates one of kind lamps from vintage Murano glass.  The shape and color of each piece of glass determines the final silhouette of the lamp. Here, Louise’s imagination took light turning two pink fluted orbs into modern lamps with a slight Chinoiserie influence seen in the bamboo rings and asian inspired bases.


The collaboration between Niermann Weeks and Visual Comfort produced this crystal and brass masterpiece.  The feather like arms capture and reflect the light beautifully.


Sklo Studio began as the brainchild of an American artist and architect and a Czech glassblower to pursue a new vision of hand blown Bohemian crystal. Each market, I have been enchanted by their work that brings a modern aesthetic to a historic craft tradition. Each piece is unique in that the nature of the glass and the details of the process are revealed in each piece.


The quartz point lamp from Times Two Design provides a wow factor for any room. The brass base and gilt lined shade make it even more glamorous. . Lauren Renfrow  elevates the natural beauty of elements from the earth to artisan levels using acrylic and other embellishments. Her company focuses on creating entirely handmade items that are limited edition and totally unique.

IMG_4134The highly anticipated lighting line from Kelly Wearstler at Visual Comfort attracted a huge crowd!  Lines formed outside the showroom for fans to catch a glimpse of Kelly and see her collection. Brass was her material of choice and each piece possessed a signature sculptural quality seen in many of her designs.




The lovely ladies at Taylor Burke Home had many great market introductions including their first foray into lighting.  The 2 pendant styles can be customized in any color in a 36” and 20” diameter.  The pierced fretwork is an ingenious repeat of their logo.  Both styles have riveted nailheads defining the edges for a sleek look. These native Carolinians travel the world for their inspiration. All of their products are made in the USA and eco-friendly.


The Natural Light Company debuted a collection of cast metal lamps of aluminum inspired by nature. Here, ginkgo leaves are interpreted larger in size and arranged so that each leaf is placed as though standing on the shoulders of lower leaves. The metallic finish adds a sophisticated touch to any space.

Catherine M. Austin Interior Design/ Arteriors

Jewelry details were everywhere at this market from cabinetry hardware to this pendant from Arteriors that resembles a gold cuff bracelet.



New Orleans native Michael Clément specializes in ceramic, hand crafted lamps and interior accessories. Each piece reflects his aesthetic of classical and traditional forms, and finishes that evoke the veneer of the city. This collection was inspired by the climate and culture New Orleans has in creating a patina of time. The collection features handmade lamps, hand sculpted and hand-thrown bowls enhanced with rich colors and distinctive finishes.


These handfolded plexiglass pendants from Oggetti Luce appear as if they are ready to take flight. The light they emit and shadows they cast have a magical quality.  Hung together in various colors looked like an art installation.


The colorful world of Dunes and Duchess is the brainchild of photographer Michael Partino and stylist/writer Stacey Kunstel. All pieces are handmade in the USA in a myriad of colors. Their collection of lighting and furniture is an extension of this delightful couple that are the perfect combination of creativity, authenticity, and whimsy.


Design icon Celerie Kemble displayed her Brutalist 36” diameter gilt pendant holding court over one of her gorgeous vignettes at Henredon.


The wall of sconces at Wesley Hall showed the countless customizations of the Robert Abbey Williamsburg Lightfoot Sconce. Here the 3 metal finishes (nickel, brass and bronze) are shown with various nailhead patterns and come in a variety of leather and fabric upholstered backplates.


North Carolina based artist Tommy Mitchell incorporated his metal flowers into several new table lamps and sconces.  This was my favorite which is actually a stalk of brussel sprouts reincarnated in gilt metal.


I always look forward to seeing the colorful creations of Ro Sham Beaux. Their customization abilities and variety of styles make it a designer’s dream for a lighting line. The carnelian red beads are a new introduction and definitely on trend with all of the other touches of red seen throughout High Point.

Please contact the design studio if you are interested in design services or any of the works seen here…Please check back this week for more High Point Highlights on trends, accessories and furnishings.

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


Trina Turk Boutique
Designed by Kelly Wearstler
Our trip to Palm Springs was thanks to the gracious and generous Trina Turk. She had come to The Mint Museum as the keynote speaker for a fundraiser and had the Palm Springs weekend donated as part of the Silent Auction. Trina is just as optimistic and lovely as one would expect.  Her brand is a true extension of her delightful personality and her contemporary and colorful aesthetic.
She and her equally talented and charming husband Jonathan Skow (aka Mr. Turk) founded the company in 1995. Jonathan not only photographs and styles all of the shoots, but he is also known as the “Director of Inspiration.” The company has grown into an iconic lifestyle brand that creates eleven annual collections of women’s ready to wear and accessories, swimwear, active wear, Mr. Turk menswear, residential decor and textiles. In 2014, the company will  launch their footwear, handbag and jewelry collections.
To our delight, we were greeted with gift bags from Trina upon our arrival, complete with beach towels, jewelry and our very own VIP cards to use at the boutique.
Surprise Swag Bags at our Hotel
Trina and Jonathan fell in love with Palm Springs in the 1990s and became immersed in the renaissance of the Palm Springs community. They purchased their mid century home “The Ship of the Desert” in 1998 and opened the boutique in 2001. (More to come on “The Ship of the Dessert” in my next post)  Trina wanted to create a boutique that captured the essence of what her collection embodied…”the cocktails by the pool” lifestyle of Palm Springs. She enlisted the help of Kelly Wearstler to design the space after seeing her work at the Viceroy. The boutique looks just  as fresh and modern today as the day it opened. We lingered at the boutique for hours and literally tried on just about everything in stock!
Trina Swimwear
Trina Pillows
For brunch, Cheeky’s is the best in town.  The wait is definitely worth it…where else can you order a flight of bacon? Chef Tara Lazar only uses fresh local ingredients and takes brunch to an entire new culinary level.
After brunch, the shopping along North Palm Canyon is out of this world.  The galleries and boutiques are full of mid century wares, vintage fashions and jewelry. Some of our favorites were Flow Modern Design, Retrospect, PS Modern Way and Raymond Lawrence.
Mid Century Tourism Posters
Vintage Jewelry at Flow Modern
Flow Modern
Black Coral Beauties at Flow Modern
Franz Kline-Inspired Work by Myke Reilly
Flow Modern
Mid Century Settee in Coral Crushed Velvet
Encaustic by Johanna Bautzer
Abstract Painting of the San Francisco Skyline
Over-scaled Mid Century Lamps
Kinetic Sculpture at Retrospect
Acrylic by David Allan Peters
Raymond Lawrence
Kenny Irwin Sculpture Garden
Located at 1077 Granvia Valmonte, the Kenny Irwin Sculpture Park is not to be missed.  Kenny’s father handed over his 2 acre property to his son to fulfill his creative fantasy. Kenny uses found objects, melds them together and paints them in vibrant colors to create a wonderful of offbeat, imaginative sculptures. Kenny says his work is inspired by his vivid dreams of aliens and distant planets. He collects everything from old typewriters, computers, slot machines, to air compressors and garbage cans, to realize his visions.

By the late afternoon, search out one of the many local haunts with air conditioning blasting.  We went to The Tropicale, reminiscent of the upbeat lounges of old Palm Springs.

Workshop Kitchen + Bar is not to be missed for locally sourced food (within 100 miles) in an industrial chic setting. The original Spanish Colonial building was transformed into a sleek, modern restaurant with 27 foot high cathedral ceilings, sleek seating and concrete walls. Chef Michael Beckman draws quite a crowd with his crafted custom cocktails and farm to table food.  The space is usually fully booked.  Be sure to make reservations weeks in advance.
Bar at Workshop Kitchen + Bar
Dining Room at Workshop Kitchen + Bar
Back at The Parker Palm Springs, have a nightcap at the dark and groovy Mister Parker’s.  To get the essence of the “joint”, be sure to click here.
Nightcaps at Mister Parker’s
Complete with White Baby Grand


Norma’s at The Parker Palm Springs

With an annual 350 days of sunshine and 73 degree winter days, Palm Springs is the PERFECT destination for a long weekend getaway. The dining, shopping, culture, spas, and physical beauty of the landscape are absolutely incredible.  Begin with an al fresco brunch at Norma’s in The Parker Palm Springs. We learned a lot from the natives when we were there and it is best to do any touring early in the day before the desert heat sets in.

The Kaufmann House by Richard Neutra, 1946

Robert Imber, architectural buff and preservation advocate, treated us to a wonderful and educational  tour of Palm Springs.  What began as an agricultural community in the mid 1800s was wiped out by drought and floods.  In the mid 20th century, visitors began coming to the restorative and healing desert climate including many stars of the early Hollywood era. From the 1940s-1960s, the area experienced tremendous growth which attracted many of the era’s most talented architects to the area. “Desert Modernism” was born and thousands of innovative structures were built. The architecture was influenced by the early modernists such as Le Corbusier, Walter Gropius, Mies van der Rohe and Frank Lloyd Wright. However, Palm Springs architects were creating their own original version of modernism. The structures were crafted from honest materials that integrated beautifully into the desert landscape.

With the economic crash of the 1970s, many fortunes were ruined and several modernist masterpieces fell into disrepair. A new wave of modernists came to the valley in the late 80s and 90s in in search of original modernist homes. This energy instigated a renewed interest in modernism and several homes were saved.

View from the Street

Seeing the iconic Kaufmann house was at the top of my bucket list.   In 1936, Pittsburgh department store magnate Edgar Kauffman, who had also hired Frank Lloyd Wright to build “Fallingwater”, commissioned Richard Neutra to design his desert home much to the disappointment of Wright.  He had wanted a home that was more open and airy than what Wright was constructing at the time. Neutra had a vision ot build a transparent house within the desert landscape.  An expansive pool set perpendicular to the house balances out the architecture against the mountains.

Slim Aaron’s Iconic Image of The Kauffman House

The 3,800 square foot house was designed to be a beautiful object framed by the desert landscape.  It cost $30,000 at the time it was built.  In 2007, it was auctioned off as part of Christie’s Post War and Contemporary Art Sale for $15,000,000. Now known as one of the greatest masterpieces of modern architecture, the Kauffman house came to be a symbol of post war optimism and the American dream.

Am Alexander House

Inspired by Frank Lloyd Wright and Richard Neutra, the father/son architects and builders George and Robert Alexander designed some of the first developments in Palm Springs. The houses had a distinct layout of a carport, breezeway, windows and wall that could be oriented in various ways where they were built.  The open floor plans, clean lines, and mass produced materials made them easy to build and now the original Alexander houses are highly collectible in the Palm desert.

The brightly colored doors found on several homes pop against the white surfaces, landscaping and brilliant blue skies.

Sculpted Lawn and Geometric Door
Indoor/ Outdoor Sculpture
Our fabulous guide Robert Imber

As the afternoon heat sets in, a stop at the Viceroy Palm Springs is essential. Designed by Kelly Wearstler, this refuge from the heat is like an oasis in the desert.  In her book Palm Springs Living, Dianne Dorran Saeks describes it as  “Refreshing iced lemonade on a blazing summer day.”

The Bar at the Viceroy
Custom Cocktails
Our Future Real Estate Agent
Poolside at the Viceroy

The Viceroy was originally built in 1929 as a series of bungalows and surrounding pools, lawns and shaded terraces. Known for its discretion and privacy, the Viceroy hosted many Hollywood stars such as Clark Gable, Joan Crawford, Ann Miller and Tyrone Power. Kelly Wearstler used 1930s and 40s Hollywood as inspiration for the decor of the hotel which is evident in the overall glamorous, dramatic, and exotic vibe of the hotel.

Citron Restaurant at the Viceroy

Next, be sure to check out The Palm Springs Art Museum. The museum was founded in 1938 specializing in Native American artifacts.  Today, it boasts one of the country’s best permanent collections including works by Marc Chagall, Pablo Picasso, Andy Warhol, Roy Lichetenstein, Donald Jedd, Louise Bourgeois, Alexander Calder, Henry Moore, Robert Motherwell, Helen Frankenthaler, Kenneth Noland, and Robert Rauschenburg. Some of my personal favorites are below…

Phenomena Wind Off Big Sur, 1970 by  Paul Jenkins
In front of Judy Chicago’s Rainbow Pickett, 1939
Ivy, 2002 by Teresita Fernandez
Acrylic cubes


Casualty in the Art Realm, 1979  by Robert Ameson,

After a long and fulfilling day of culture, a visit to The Purple Palm at the Colony Palms Hotel is the perfect finale. The Spanish Colonial Hotel was built and opened in 1936 by Al Wertheimer, who was a reputed mobster and member of the Purple Gang. The hotel served as a private club for Wertheimer and his gambling pals complete with a pool, secret underground speakeasy and brothel concealed by a staircase in the kitchen pantry. The hotel then fell into the hands of Robert Howard and his Oscar-nominated wife Andrea, who owned the champion thoroughbred Seabiscuit.Under their guidance, the supper club became a Palm Springs hot spot for the next 30 years. In 2007, the current owners Sheila and Don Cluff re-opened the hotel as The Colony Palms Hotel.  They enlisted celebrity interior designer Martyn Lawrence Bullard to renovate and redecorate the storied property.  It is now a 4 star boutique hotel spread over 3 acres house a world class restaurant, spa and accommodations.

Poolside at The Colony Palm Springs
The interior of The Purple Palm
From February 13-23, Palm Springs will be hosting their annual Modernism week celebrating and fostering the appreciation of mid-century architecture, design, fashion and culture. The week features over 100 special events including the Modernism show, home tours, films, lectures, parties, music and more. To learn more about the celebration and purchase tickets, click here.


My last post was all about famous red interiors where the color is used as a backdrop.  This post shows how red can be used as an accent to punctuate an interior.  In all of these images, red is repeated in small doses around the room.  The color draws the eye around the room to visually connect the dots. Even a small amount of red can make a very big impact. See below for some inspiration…
Sarah Ruffin Costello’s Bedroom
Courtesy of Domino
The red shade above plays off of the bossoms of the cherry branches and makes this bedroom sophisticated and feminine, without being too girly.
Interior Design by Mary McDonald
Interior Design by Mary McDonald


Mary McDonald is a master of using one color repeatedly to create maximum impact.
Interior Design by Katie Ridder
Katie Ridder illustrates how something as easy as painting the back of the bookcases and adding a red lampshade can add drama to this Moroccan-influenced playroom.
The Coral Bar at the Tides Hotel
South Beach
Interior Design by Kelly Wearstler
The coral red used here plays beautifully off of the cusom rug which is like a painting for the floor.  Kelly’s graphic punch makes this bar cozy and glamourous.
Interior Design by Alessandra Branca
Alessandra Branca is well known for incorporating red into her interiors. This library is accented by the red border at the ceiling as well as the vibrant red pillows and ottoman. These solid touches all bring out the red pattern in the print fabric on the sofa and window treatments.
Interior Design by Alessandra Branca
Courtesy of Elle Decor
Alessandra repeats the red on the back of the bookcases, chair fabric, window fabric and accessories.
Interior Design by Alessandra Branca

I love how Alessandra used something as simple as red grosgrain ribbon to outline the room of this guest bedroom. The small lampshade and garden seat stand out becasue they are the only solid red accents against the red ticking used everywhere else.

Interior Design by Alessandra Branca
Courtesy of House & Garden
The red chairs animate the monocromatic room.
Interior Design by Alessandra Branca
One strong red piece such as this chinoiserie cocktail table contrasts beautifully with the neutral sofa.
Interior Design by Miles Redd

Courtesy of Elle Decor

What I love most about Miles Redd’s work is his unexpected and daring color combinations. He proves that any colors can work together when used in the proper amounts and treatments.  It is hard to imagine anything other that a bright red door to hold its own with the boldness of the cobalt blue walls. The red chair seats, shades and flowers connect the red dots.
Miles Redd’s Living Room
Courtesy of Architectural Digest
This is one of my favorite rooms of Miles.  The red corner banquette is stunning the pink walls.  The art hung “salon-style”, the zebra upholstered door, and the patterned floor are brilliant. Who would not LOVE to attend a cocktail party here?!?!
Interior Design by Miles Redd
Another favorite from Mr. Redd.  The vibrant sofa and rug anchors the space in this New York apartment. The abstract black and white painting converse beautifully with the zebra footstools and the chair fabric.
Interior Design by Suzanne Kasler
Suzanne Kasler uses a pink tinged cranberry red in this serene living room to accent the shapes of all of the furniture.  The color borders each sofa cushion. The striped fabric accents the rectangular shape of the Louis 16th chairs, and the red stool seat draws attention to the curve of the seat.


Interior Design by Yours Truly
My daughter Evelyn absolutely adores red.  When she saw I was doing a post on the color red, she asked me to include this image of her old bedroom. Her room consisted of sveral pieces of inherited furniture that we tried to pull together and update.  The bedside tables and bookcase were orginally stained and we lacquered them black. The graphic pillow is from the 1950s and was a gift to her great grandmother. We were able to reuse all of the fabrics in her new room, but also added a red grosgrain ribbon border around the room inspired by Alessandra Branca. Ms. Vreeland would be very proud!