Artful Living Magazine | Spring 2010

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Lakes Artful Living | Spring 2010 1

from the publisher ||

Joie de Vivre


oie de vivre is the French phrase that means for the Joy of Living. Many Americans envy the French manner of happiness because they manage to live so well and contentedly. It’s not just about cooking, decorating, or entertaining – it’s just about enjoying

all of the small details of everyday life.

In this period of uncertainty we need comfort, but we also

need inspiration and motivation. It’s time to think differently and embrace new ideas or perhaps a different way of doing things. As we live through “the Great Recession” this idea of living contentedly seems like a worthy goal.

Every Francophile credits the French for inventing high

fashion, fine food, style, sophistication and glamour. For our spring issue, Artful Living sets out to celebrate all things French.

Photographer Jenn Cress takes us to Couture Week in Paris to

see the latest in haute fashion. We discover some Minnesotans with a passion for the City of Lights, including Peter O’Toole with a new book on Paris featuring amazing photos and walking tours, and Wendy Lubovich who gives us her perfect day in Paris. Billy Beson tells us how to navigate a Paris flea market and we uncover the best way to rent or buy an apartment in Paris. Our departments round out this issue to observe other joys of French inspiration from wine to cheese, cars to bubbles, absinthe to art, and a variety of products you can find locally. Finally our French theme takes us to America with Jonathan Lerner searching out French flavors in the cultural gumbo of New Orleans.

Our mission for Artful Living continues; to inform, entertain

and share with you outstanding homes, emerging ideas, travel destinations, design, flashpoints and interviews with remarkable people. You will also discover some of the finest properties available with Lakes Sotheby’s International Realty.

Thanks to our contributors, advertisers and you the reader for

spending time with us. Au revoir,

Frank Roffers Publisher Artful Living Magazine Artful Living

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64 Strolling

through Paris

Writer and photographer Peter J. O’Toole takes readers off the beaten path in Paris.

Paris Fashion Week 68

Artful Living captures some highlights on the runway and backstage.

France in America 72

Searching out French flavors and influences in New Orleans.

Coco Chanel 134

So much more than a couturier, Alecia Stevens shares how Chanel remains her muse.

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contents SPRING 2010

live artfully


17 what to...


Collect, wear, give, organize, drive, eat, drink, attend

exclusive listing

Brownstones on France are redefining Edina

84 build


Keeping it local with Cambria

34 shop

88 renovate

38 art+culture

92 retreat

A small leap of faith helps one family make their mark

Some of our favorite finds from the City of Lights

Controversial Carpeaux sculpture comes to life at MIA

40 designer discoveries Billy Beson on shopping Paris flea markets

42 collect

Feel at home while traveling



96 landscape

Changing the way people live, one stone at a time

100 design

Mouton Rothchild’s fine wine and famous art combined

46 live

Great taste and risk taking transform a home

Keeping an apartment in Paris can feel like a home away from home


50 beauty

120 craftsmanship

Taking a cue from natural French beauties plus: Backstage at the Armani Couture show in Paris

56 transportation

The sexy new XJ luxury sports sedan from Jaguar

58 Q+A

Fashion designer, Josephus Thimister back on the runway in Paris

62 events

Lakes Sotheby’s Wayzata office opening and The Smile Network’s House of Love

Artful Living Online

105 property gallery

Selection of properties form Sotheby’s International Realty

Going beyond standard timekeeping can be complicated


124 good

Palliative care helps enhance the quality of life for chronically ill children

126 private aviation

An economical and convenient solution for business travelers

128 note

Saint Paul Hotel celebrates 100 years

132 leisure

A perfect day in Paris


Visit to flip through a digital version of this magazine and view video tours of Edina, Lake Minnetonka and Stillwater homes featured on pages 107, 111 and 115. Artful Living is also available at newsstands and Kowalski’s Markets.

publisher+editor Frank Roffers

design Art Director: Mollie Windmiller

managing editor Debbie Fischer

marketing Director: Heidi Libera

distribution Hayley Dulin

contributors Writers: Billy Beson l Hayley Dulin l Karen Fawcett Alyssa Ford l Marni Ginther l Jonathan Lerner Wendy Lubovich l David Mahoney l Sally Spector Alecia Stevens l Ginny Wennen l Mitchell Wherley Fashion Photography: Jenn Cress Fashion Stylist: Jane Belfry Photo Coordinator: Krista Armbrust Style+Product Coordinator: Jill Roffers

advertising sales Ketti Histon | Will Ruoff To advertise in this publication, please contact Frank Roffers at 952.237.1100 or

customer service

For additional information on any items in this magazine, please call: 952.230.3100 To be removed from the mailing list please email “unsubscribe” in subject line to: Lakes Artful Living is published by Roffers Group, LLC, all rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reprinted without permission. Roffers Group, LLC cannot be held responsible for any error or omissions. If your property is listed with a real estate broker, please disregard. It is not our intention to solicit the offerings of other real estate brokers. We are happy to work with them and cooperate fully. Each Office is Independently Owned And Operated. ®, TM and SM are licensed trademarks to Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates, Inc. An Equal Opportunity Company. Equal Housing Opportunity. Sotheby’s International Realty, Inc. is Owned and Operated by NRT Incorporated.

Artful Living | Spring 2010 13

Contributors Billy Beson

is a daring, dynamic, and dapper interior designer known for his risk-taking style and extraordinary creativity in both work and life.

Karen Fawcett

is president of Karen has had experience in renting and leasing out properties.

Alyssa Ford

has been covering Twin Cities’ architecture and design since ‘04. She has written for Midwest Home, Minnesota Monthly, the Star Tribune, and many other publications.

Marni Ginther

is a marketing, magazine and web writer based in Minneapolis.

Jonathan Lerner

writes on art, architecture, travel and food for a number of national magazines and is author of the novels Alex Underground and Caught in a Still Place.

Wendy Lubovich

is a freelance writer working for local and national publications in the areas of home, garden, art and travel. A former news anchor at KSTP TV and a tour guide at the Walker Art Center.

David Mahoney

writes about travel, wine, and the environment for a variety of national and regional magazines. A former senior editor at Sunset and Minnesota Monthly.

Alecia Stevens

is a freelance writer and interior designer, dividing her time between Minneapolis and New York. Her blog is

Ginny Wennen

has been the editor of several business and trade magazines, and is now a marketing and magazine writer based in White Bear Lake.

Mitchell Wherley

is the owner, CEO and driving force behind the passion, inspiration and creativity that define Spalon Montage.

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Cover Image Fashion Artist, David Downton Over the last decade, David Downton has established a reputation as one of the world’s leading fashion artists. His classically elegant, yet highly contemporary “ ... The modern day Gruau” images have VALENTINO been a key factor in the revival of interest in the tradition of fashion illustration. David is a worthy successor to the great artists in his field including Gruau, Eric and Antonio. In 1996 he was commissioned to draw at the Paris Couture Shows by a Sunday supplement. Since that time he has worked principally as a fashion illustrator and his reports from the shows have appeared in V Magazine, Vogue, Harpers Bazaar, The Times, The New York Times and the Telegraph Magazine among others. His commercial client list includes; Chanel, Dior, Tiffany’s New York, Harrods, Estée Lauder and the V&A Museum. In addition, David has produced portraits (from life) of some of the worlds most beautiful and iconic women: Dita Von Teese, Erin O’Connor, Catherine Deneuve, Iman, Linda Evangelista, Rachel Weisz and Paloma Picasso. One of his recent commissions was to produce four illustrated covers of Cate Blanchett for Australian Vogue. In 2006 David was made a Visiting Professor at the London College of Fashion, and in May 2009 he was awarded an honorary doctorate from the Academy of Art University, San Francisco. He is currently the Editor-inChief of the world’s only journal dedicated to fashion illustration, Pourquoi Pas? A Journal of Fashion Illustration. David’s book, Masters of Fashion Illustration, will be published in September 2010.





22 Organize



26 28 30

live artfully

What to...





all things french French fries photographed by Jenn Cress at a cafĂŠ in Paris. Artful Living | Spring 2010 19

live artfully || collect

Couronne Royale |


bejeweled A selection of Tina Wilcox’s treasured French crowns.



he history of French crowns is fascinating and often scandalous, illustrating a world of privilege and position. Crowns were symbols of wealth and social standing, but most importantly, they were the accouterments of power. The French Crown Jewels so represented the ruling class that in 1792, they were stolen when the French Royal Treasury was stormed by rioters. Most, but not all, were recovered. In 1885, the Royal Crown Jewels were broken up and sold off by the French Third Republic. The surviving set of historic crowns is on display in the Galerie d’Apollon of the Louvre Museum. More than a decade ago, Minneapolis native Tina Wilcox began collecting her own assortment of antique French crowns. Wilcox’s collection now surpasses 25 (five shown above) and are displayed in her elegantly appointed living room. The crowns range in size and date back to the 19th century. Brilliant to behold, each bears its own distinct beauty, intricate in detail with gilt brass, colored and cut glass, and of course, sparkling jewels. The crowns tell individual stories: Some were used in the theater, others worn to society functions, and many were used in the church as altar pieces or adornments for statues and images of saints. The exquisite beauty of the historic crowns continues to dazzle today, lending a uniquely sparkling elegance to this collector’s home. Artful Living

| Spring 2010


live artfully || wear

WellHeeled |



rench shoemaker Christian Louboutin knows how to make women lust over the perfect pair of heels. Louboutin draws inspiration from his worldly travels, crafting unique shoes that cater to almost any fancy. Who doesn’t love ultra-high stilettos, brightly colored espadrilles, pumps covered in lace and satin, and stylish flats donned with spikes and glitter? However, it is the signature red sole that makes his shoes unique among high end designers—surprisingly, a detail that happened on a whim. Louboutin felt something was missing when looking at the sole on one of his sketches. Tired with the basic black, it was his assistant’s scarlet-red nail polish that inspired him, sparking the idea to paint the shoe’s soles with the very same shade. The red sole continues to be the staple in all of his designs, giving a woman a certain je ne sais quoi each time she slips into her Louboutin stilettos.

“A woman carries her clothes, but it’s a shoe which carries a woman.” CHRISTIAN LOUBOUTIN

Artful Living | Spring 2010 23

live artfully || give

Perfume Delights Francis Kurkdjian’s fragrance bubbles offer a moment of play. | by Hayley DUlin


vant-garde Parisian perfumer Francis Kurkdjian is the man behind dozens of the world’s most prestigious perfumes including Yves Saint Laurent, Christian Lacroix and Jean Paul Gaultier, to name a few. But it is the recent launch of his own line, Maison Francis Kurkdjian Paris, where Kurkdijian’s perfume creations truly step outside of the bottle. Kurkdjian, who in the past has scented the fountains and gardens at Versailles to churn out scented bubbles for summer celebrations, has now crafted his own line of luxurious perfumed bubbles. The bubbles are packaged in sophisticated scents like cold mint, pear, and cut herbs that evoke sweet-smelling moments of play for both children and adults alike. Kurkdjian’s line also includes a variety of unusual scented products that infuse fragrance into everyday life: from unique candles and lusciously fragrant laundry detergent, to scented incense paper and perfumed leather bracelets. Prices range from $18.00 to $250. Available locally at Neiman Marcus or at

scents for the senses

Parisian perfumer Francis Kurkdjian at the Versailles fountains. Artful Living

| Spring 2010


live artfully || organize

Creative I Display

f you are like most people in today’s busy and increasingly digital world, you likely have hundreds of photographs packed away in closets, boxes, and other nooks and crannies. Why not take a fresh look at favorite moments and tell a story of your life? Display photos in groupings on large expanses of a wall. Use a variety of frames in different sizes and shapes to showcase travel memorabilia, such as vintage postcards in ornate frames. Your old photos can bring a meaningful and wonderfully decorative element to a cozy enclosure, a bookshelf or a coffee table, and lend a warm and personal touch to your home. Artful Living

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live artfully || drive

Compact Concept This new mini mobile produces zero CO2 emissions. | by HAYLEY DULIN


rench car manufacturer Renault recently unveiled the Twizy Z.E. Concept. The vehicle is an all-electric means of transport that produces zero carbon-dioxide emissions, while still offering speed and efficiency. The futuristic-looking Twizy features a compact design ideal for busy city dwellers that need to navigate their way through the urban streets. The vehicle seats the passenger directly behind the driver in cozy tandem seating. Twizy offers its occupants a new, simple and practical means of transportation. Available in 2011. Artful Living

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live artfully || eat


o to any fromagerie in France and you will see exquisite cheese in every size and shape. However, one sticks out with an appearance of a Napoleon complex. Valençay [vah-lohn-SAY] is a classic little truncated mold-ripened cheese that gets better with age. Legend has it that in 1799, Emperor Napoleon I returned to France from a failed military expedition to capture Egypt. He stopped at the Château de Valençay in the Loire Valley, a castle known for producing the finest chevres. Freshly made Valençay cheeses stood a few inches tall and were shaped like perfect-looking Egyptian pyramids. Upon seeing this, Napoleon went into a full rage, whipped out his sword and chopped off the tops of every one of them. Dusted with a light coating of ash, Valençay slowly develops a rind with considerable white, gray or blue mold. When young, it’s moist and tangy, and with age it evolves to be smooth, dense and delicious. To serve it, simply cut into quarter sections and pair it with a dry white Sancerre or Sauvignon Blanc. It can be found locally at Surdyk’s.

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Napoleon Cut the Cheese Artful Living

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live artfully || drink

Going Green Absinthe is making a comeback after a 95-year drought. |


olorfully nicknamed “the green fairy” for its verdant hue, absinthe was such a staple of Parisian life in the Belle Époque that the interlude between day and night when boulevardiers crowded the city’s cafés became known as “the green hour.” Creative souls seemed particularly enthralled by the powerful anise-flavored spirit: The poet Rimbaud extolled absinthe’s seductive virtues in verse, Toulouse-Lautrec carried it with him in a hollowed-out cane, and Van Gogh was reported to have been under its influence when he famously severed part of his left ear. Absinthe takes its name from one of its key ingredients, Artemisia absinthium, better known as wormwood. Critics of the drink claimed that wormwood—and particularly one of its chemical components, thujone—was responsible for causing hallucinations, seizures and worse. As a result, European nations started banning absinthe in the first decade of the 20th century. The United States put a ban into effect in 1912, and France finally followed suit two years later. As it turns out, wormwood probably had very little to do with any adverse effects that absinthe drinkers might have suffered, which were more likely caused by toxic additives in cheap absinthe or simply the high alcohol content (typically 50 to 75 percent). Recent analyses of pre-ban absinthes have shown that their thujone levels were not only significantly below the threshold of toxicity, but also below the

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maximum amount allowed by U.S. governmental regulations. Apparently government officials found this evidence convincing. In 2007, after nearly a century of prohibition, authentic wormwood-infused absinthe once again became legally available in America. Suddenly bartenders that had been forced to use substitutes like Pernod and Herbsaint in classic absintheenhanced cocktails, such as the Sazerac and the Corpse Reviver #2, were able to swirl in a splash of the real deal. No cocktail shaker is necessary, though, to savor absinthe in the true Parisian fashion. What is required is patience, as well as a small carafe of ice water, a sugar cube, a flat slotted spoon, and preferably a specially designed glass that indicates how much absinthe to pour into it. (If you haven’t inherited a vintage absinthe spoon and glass from your grandpere, you can often find new versions packaged together in absinthe gift boxes.) The ritual begins with an ounce or more of absinthe being poured into the glass. The spoon is suspended on the rim of the glass, and a sugar cube place on it. Three ounces or so of ice-cold water is then dripped over the sugar cube, a drop at a time. As the sugary water flows into the glass through the slots in the spoon, it causes the absinthe to “louche,” turning an opaque milky color as essential oils precipitate out of the spirit. Once all of the water has combined with the absinthe, the process is complete. The only thing left to do is to sip the drink slowly and allow the green fairy to work its magic.

live artfully || attend

2010 IMS Design Seminars Exclusively for the Public. Get insights from design experts inside the Design Center.

Buying Quality Furniture Sharon Allemong, The Sale Room at IMS Get the inside story on recognizing essential quality and value features for the next time you purchase home furnishings.

Saturday, May 1 – 10:30am

Style Eternal: Dressing Your Home in Lasting Luxury Jim Noble, Noble Interiors Learn how to select and live with truly fine furnishings that can be enjoyed both now and for generations to come.

Thursday, May 20 – 1:30pm

Design with a Global Twist: Incorporating Rare and Unusual Artifacts into Your Home Sheree Vincent, Fusion Designed Fill your home with unique personality by showcasing rare and/ or unusual pieces you’ve collected on your travels.

Thursday, June 17 – 1:30pm

For details and to RSVP:

Contact Bud Cleator at 612.330.9448 or Visit IMS Home Furnishings Showrooms: Weekdays 9 – 5 and by appointment T: 612.338.6250 275 Market St., Minneapolis

collage || shop

French Finds Our top picks from across the Atlantic. n Available



rd ’s






e ât



Chateau Fonréaud Bordeaux Available at Surdyk’s $22

NICOLAS ALZIARI OLIVE OIL Available at Williams-Sonoma, $49



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FRENCH MACAROONS Available locally at Sweets Bakeshop in St. Paul, these treats come in an array of unusual flavors, including lavender caramel, mint basil and mango. $1 each

Mastering the Art of French Cooking Available at Victory in Edina or Barnes & Noble $40


af i


s ing

oked Chard -Sm on

k Oa

dry rub for grilli or a ng. alt Av a ila bl e

na y


is all-natural condim ent



th Use t l Sa

Diptyque Feuille de Lavander Diptyque made the scented candle into a modern day cult classic. Available at Ampersand, $60


a illi W












Available at Wil


com $20




Guerlain Champs Elysses Available at Neiman Marcus, $70






Taschen’s Paris Available at Anthropologie,, or $40

So n

oma $18

collage || art

Linda Le Kinff

Bill Mack

Josee Nadeau

Original Oil on Board, “Segolene” 27x34” Framed $3,500

Original Mixed-Media Relief Sculpture, “Matisse Spirit 3” 45x38” Framed $39,000

Embellished Giclee on Canvas “Harrison and Me” 64x50” Framed $5,800

To receive more information about these works of art, please contact Griffin Gallery at 952.844.9884

Artful Living | Spring 2010 39

collage || art+culture

Too Human. Too Real. A model of the once-controversial Carpeaux sculpture shows proudly in Minneapolis. | by CHRIS WINDMILLER, DOCENT AT THE MINNEAPOLIS INSTITUTE OF ARTS


rchitect Charles Garnier commissioned French artist, Jean-Baptise Carpeaux in 1865 to create La Danse (The Dance) for the façade of his new Paris Opera House. Carpeaux worked on a series of models for two years. Having studied the works of Michelangelo, Donatello and Verrochino, he acquired a taste for movement and spontaneity, which he joined with the principles of baroque art. At the time, neoclassical art was in the forefront: Sculptors depicted

the human body as an ideal form, not intended to represent an actual person. Breaking away from this technique, Carpeaux demonstrated the naturalistic style of sculpture, revealing for the first time a more imperfect, more realistic view of the human body. This was too human, too real and outright shocking to the public viewer. It was by far one of the most controversial sculptures of the 19th century. Many considered the sculpture too sexual to be on display as a public monument. As people complained, they still continued to come in large masses to see it. So much so that in the dark of night, someone splashed bottles of ink down one side of the sculpture. It was publicly suspected that Carpeaux himself was responsible, and believed he had done this to ensure his sculpture would continue to draw attention. With such scandal, Napolean III bowed to public pressure and ordered it removed. The war of 1870, followed by the death of Carpeaux, put an end to the controversy and the sculpture was restored to the Opera House in 1878. A model of The Dance is displayed in the galleries at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts, where we are able to see it as Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux wanted his viewers to see it: uninhibited and filled with energy while appealing to the senses. As you walk around the sculpture, you feel as though the dancers are moving, and you’re dancing right with them. Their expressions are joyous and carefree. We might even discover this sculpture holds an audible quality that allows us to imagine sounds of laughter as well as the rhythm of music. Visit the Minneapolis Institute of Arts ( to see this sculpture on display (left) and learn more about the many more works of art featured at the MIA. For a more detailed experience, call to schedule a guided tour with a docent. They can paint a much more detailed picture about the artwork and the artists behind the work, allowing a deeper appreciation for what stands in front of you.

the dance left On view at the MIA, a model of what would crescendo into a much larger sculpture, located at the Opera House in Paris, France

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collage || designer discoveries

Designer’s Eye How to shop the Paris flea markets. |

Watson Interior Design and I chose Le Cinq in Hotel George V, a little pricey but definitely a once-in-a-lifetime experience. We were looking for antiques with a documented history and unique one-of-a-kind pieces. I keep the projects I am currently working on in mind, as well as other clients who may need that very special piece to complete their home. A sixth sense to me is imagining an antique piece in its final destination the moment I see it. Each piece will come with a romanced story from the dealer and often this story is a large part of what draws you in and gives you an instant attachment to the item. Clients are amazed at how the treasures I have found fit perfectly in their home as though it were by accident. They become a part of the clients’ history and are often passed down to the next generation. If you’re shopping for yourself, buy something that speaks to you and is unique. How do you know if you’re getting a fair price? Things to consider are age, rarity, condition and, of course, the story. Wishing you a Bon Voyage and a fabulous find at the Paris flea markets. Vive la Paris!

adorned in vintage The pastel floral scene by Jacques Bille, who exhibited his work in the “Aux Artistes Français” gallery from 1914 to 1939, highlights a hand-carved limestone fireplace in this luxurious salon. Other works by Jacques Bille are also shown in the Louvre.

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here are more flea markets in Paris than you can count, especially if you’re like me and lost after un, deux, trois. As a designer, my favorite is Le Marché aux Puces located on the north edge of Paris. The least expensive way to get there is by the metro (station Garibaldi on line 13, station Porte de Clignancourt on line 4). But, the best way to get there is by chauffer-driven sedan. As a designer or buyer the first thing you need is a shipping agent. These agents are generally located directly outside the markets. Once you register, you are given a receipt book which is to be signed by any dealer you purchase from. The next day the agent will follow your footsteps, pick up everything you purchased, deliver it to his warehouse and crate it for shipment. These agents consolidate all of your purchases and ship them all in the same container directly to you. Allow at least two months to see your finds stateside. It’s best to have an elaborate, elegant, relaxing lunch before jumping into the markets with both feet. Fellow designers Bruce Kading of Beson Kading Interior Design Group and Lola Watson of Lola


collage || collect

Drinkable Art Artist-designed labels make Mouton Rothschild’s bottles as highly prized as the wine that’s inside them. | by DAVID MAHONEY


ome people are driven to acquire the work of famous artists. Others have a fervor for filling their cellars with the world’s finest wines. Then there are those who prefer to combine the two passions. For them, there is Chateau Mouton Rothschild, one of the five elite “first growths” of Bordeaux. For each vintage since 1945, Mouton has commissioned a renowned artist to create a unique image for its bottle labels. Marc Chagall, Joan Miró, Salvador Dali, and Andy Warhol are just a few of the legends whose work has graced Mouton’s bottles. Peter Kitchak, a Minneapolis real estate consultant who makes wine under his own label in California’s Napa Valley, started collecting Mouton about 20 years ago, when another collector was selling bottles from six consecutive vintages. “The similarities between art and wine and between music and wine have always been intriguing to me,” says Kitchak, whose Kitchak Cellars wines have musically inspired names, such as Concerto and Adagio. He now owns at least one or two bottles of almost every vintage of Mouton dating back to 1955 (the year Georges Braque created the label). Mouton’s art labels were the brainchild of Baron Philippe de Rothschild, who presided over the chateau for 66 years. The first artist label, designed by Cubist poster designer Jean Carlu for the

marked by art 44 Artful Living

1924 vintage, coincided with the young baron’s revolutionary decision to begin bottling all of the chateau’s production at the winery, rather than selling it in bulk to merchants—a practice ultimately embraced by all of Bordeaux’s first-growth wineries. It wasn’t until 1945, however, when Rothschild commissioned illustrator Philippe Jullian to design a “V for Victory”label to commemorate the end of World War II, that the art labels became an annual tradition. Rather than being paid in cash for their work, artists who design Mouton labels are given 10 cases of wine—five from the vintage bearing their label, and the rest from older vintages. The most controversial Mouton label, at least in this country, was the one designed for the 1993 vintage by the Swiss artist Balthus. Displaying a pencil drawing of a nude young girl, it provoked such a protest in the United States that the chateau put labels with blank spaces in place of the drawing on all of its American exports. To collectors, that just presented a challenge to track down bottles of the uncensored as well as the blank labels to make their collections complete. They may face yet another challenge in acquiring Mouton’s next release: Speculation about a Chinese artist being commissioned to design the label for the 2008 vintage (China being an important emerging market for fine wine) caused future prices to shoot up last fall.

Antique labels from renowned artists make Mouton’s wines that much more valuable.

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collage || live

To Buy or Rent? Keeping an apartment in Paris can feel like a home away from home. | BY KAREN FAWCETT


any Americans come to Paris and buy a souvenir they can’t actually bring home with them. They’re so captivated by the City of Light that they buy a pied-a-terre, or an apartment to own. Is it a good idea? Unless it’s going to be your principle residence or you have disposable income and want a eurodenominated investment in bricks and mortar, my vote is no. It’s more sensible to rent an apartment and put your money to work elsewhere. Too many Americans bought apartments in the past 10 years and are currently selling them because rental income isn’t covering monthly costs. I own my apartment, but I’m a French resident. Little did I know all of the ramifications of ownership when the apartment my husband and I were renting was going to be sold. Legally, we had the right of first refusal. We decided to stretch as far as we could and took out a doable mortgage until the dollar plummeted; then the monthly payments more than doubled. After my husband died, I quickly found out his children from a prior marriage and I were real estate partners. I retained Tim Ramier, an American who has practiced law in France for more than

20 years and is an expert in international tax, trusts and estate law. I learned from Maître Ramier that you must understand the pitfalls of property ownership from an attorney (for me, one who speaks perfect English) prior to taking the plunge. French law stipulates children inherit a part of a deceased parent’s estate. And because the real estate is located in France, French law, and only French law, applies to property here. French tax laws also apply to property, income, capital gains and inheritance taxes. For US citizens in France, the capital gains flat rate is 33.33 percent. There are some deductions depending on the number of years the apartment has been in the family. The French have the right to tax capital and hit you for a wealth tax. A non-resident is taxed on French real property when the net ownership value exceeds 790,000€. Financing a portion of the purchase can offset the wealth tax. Buyers pay conveyance costs in France, so be certain to budget

7 percent on top of the negotiated sale price to cover the notary’s fee; the notaire deals with a property’s title registry and transfer taxes, and guarantees that the property has a clear title. Most real estate agencies charge the owner 5 percent to sell the property. You get the idea. There is more to it because there are so many permutations regarding property ownership; moreover, the laws are constantly changing. The money spent on professional advice is worth it. If I were coming to Paris for more than a few days, I’d definitely rent. You can find anything from near-palaces to dives that can be used as launching pads for sightseeing and more. Comparable digs would cost substantially more if you stay in a hotel. Plus, I hate having to eat breakfast, lunch and dinner in restaurants or being inundated by the residual smells of perfectly ripened Brie in a tiny room. Don’t get me wrong: I’m not opposed to room service if someone is picking up the tab. But it tends to get expensive and many Parisian hotels don’t offer anything other than breakfast. Since the launching of the Internet, more and more rental sites are created each year. It’s no longer simply a question of surfing the Web. You have to be aware of some of the tricks of the trade and do your homework.

optional living An enormous light-filled living room is on a quiet one-way. NEXT PAGE TOP TO BOTTOM A dreamy bedroom overlooks a courtyard. The building is two minutes away from the Luxembourg Gardens (THIRD FROM TOP) and has a balcony and full kitchen. 48 Artful Living

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It’s no longer simply a question of surfing the Web. You have to be aware of some of the tricks of the trade and do your homework.

There are agencies that handle excellent properties. If they’re doing their job, one of the members of the staff will have inspected the apartment and perhaps stayed there and worked with the owner to insure the apartment is in tip-top shape. Many have a local representative meet and greet you when you arrive and run interference if something goes wrong. Agencies take various mark-ups over the payment the owner receives. Sometimes it’s hefty and much deserved. Other times, it’s too much for the service you receive. There are good and bad agencies. Some simply want to make the booking, deposit the commission and see you later. Good agencies count on repeat business and don’t want to alienate either party. Don’t dismiss rental sites that cater to people who manage their own property. If they’re serious, they’ll respond to your request quickly. No matter where the owner lives, a phone call is a cheap investment and creates a sense of bonding. You can ask to speak to a former tenant. Know what’s included. Many landlords expect tenants to buy everything from soap to toilet paper. If they don’t stock the necessities, ask them to provide the apartment with the bare essentials, even if you have to pay. The last thing you want to do is dash to the grocery store the minute you arrive. And be sure there’s a local contact person in the event of an emergency. Study all pictures carefully. Wide-angle lenses can make tiny spaces look gargantuan. Ask the precise number of square meters (a square meter is a little less than 11 square feet). If the ad says the apartment accommodates four people, it may be a bit of an overstatement. Be certain sheets

and towels are included and whether or not there are extra charges such as utilities, cleaning, use of the telephone, etc. Find out if there’s an elevator. Remember the third floor in Europe is the fourth floor in the U.S. Ask if the apartment is located above a bar and where the bedrooms are situated. If you’re a light sleeper, you might regret renting an apartment that’s on a low floor on the street (versus a courtyard) unless the windows and doors have double-glazed glass—or you could bring earplugs. If you’re really interested in a specific apartment, ask for the address and Google it. You’ll be able to see the building and its surroundings. It also ensures against a common scam where the building doesn’t exist. Don’t fall for the “send me money now” and I will send you info. Make sure you’ve received references, photos and a contract before sending a deposit. Read the comments section very carefully. How they’re written and what they say will give you insights into how people like the apartment and how it’s maintained. I advise people not to rent an apartment unless it has a high-speed Internet connection. Even if you have zero desire to be online, an IP connect is indicative as to whether or not the landlord caters to an American clientele. Ditto for televisions that receive English-language channels. Once you’re in your temporary home away from home, you’ll be glad to have the extra space and the ability to sit and have a drink before going out to dinner. Or, simply staying in for the evening. Just like chez vous in the States.

Karen Fawcett is president of and may be contacted at Karen has had experience in renting and leasing properties. Timothy P. Ramier specializes in international tax, trust & estate law and may be reached in Paris via:

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collage || beauty

Natural Beauty They eat their breakfast baguette with butter and salami, and head out the door with “detox” tea in hand. | by SHANNON DARSOW


hh, the French women. They wake up and slather on their creams, run their fingers through their hair, and pull their crimson lipstick out of their dainty purse where nothing else resides. They eat their breakfast baguette with butter and salami, and head out the door with detox tea in hand. After a day on the Paris Metro and an afternoon nap, their hair is messy, their skin is dewy, and somehow, contrary to what our American cosmetic-hoarding, oilblotting, hairspray-coifing beliefs would normally lead us to think, we find these French women gorgeous. Is there something to this we should be paying attention to? French women love to be natural. (This may be why perfumes are so important here). They aren’t washing their hair every day, or getting regular “blowouts.” If you opened up their medicine cabinets, instead of stacks of compacts, hair gels and sprays, you would find several creams, a comb and brush, vitamins and a dry shampoo…and OK quite

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possibly Citrate de Bétaïne (an amazing hangover cure). Oh, and let’s talk about the real reason French women aren’t fat. They detox, detox, detox. They detox with their teas after fabulously rich meals, they detox with weekly spa treatments, and they detox by walking and cycling everywhere…not to mention hiking those Metro tunnels and stairs in gorgeous heels. Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t know if I am ready to give up the seven lip glosses I carry in my purse, nor the shelf full of hair products in our linen closet (although I am sure my husband wouldn’t mind). But maybe taking a cue from these Parisian beauties is worth considering. Maybe we should be making time for a weekly seawater soak or mud wrap. Maybe taking care of our skin instead of hiding it is what will make us shine–or glow if you will. And yes, we should all have a fabulous red lipstick (MAC Lip Mix in Crimson is “spot on”) and occasionally enjoy the wind through our hair.

1. Bioderma Créaline H2O This ultra-mild non-rinse face and eyes cleanser is a cabinet staple. Available at

1 $38

4. Le Vernis Chanel Nail Lacquer in Vendetta Lovely deep

purple from their 2010 nail collection. Another must have from this collection is a subtle mushroom-y taupe called Particulière that is wearable for any and all occasions. Available at Macy’s, $30

2. Anti-Jet Lag Body Treatment at Dior Institute at Hotel Plaza Athenee Just 75 minutes will leave you feeling refreshed and energized.


contact: +33 (0) 1 5367 6535 or $260

3 4

3. Sisley Supremÿa

The intensive anti-aging skin cream pushes back the skin’s genetically programmed aging process to offer visible rejuvenation. Available at Cos Bar in Edina, $750

French Influence

The beauty items will have you saying ooh la la. |

5 6


5. Van Cleef & Arpels Oriens Eau de Parfum Timelessly elegant, this

captivating chypre, floral, fruity scent awakens with subtle, gourmand facets of delicious raspberry, black currant and praline in the top notes. Available at Neiman

Marcus, $110

6. Yves Saint Laurent Rouge Pur Lipstick in Blazing Red Bright red lips

scream French beauty. This rich color on the lips can make you look years younger. Available

at Nordstrom, $28

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collage || beauty

Behind the Scenes Backstage at the Armani Couture show in Paris. |



ow do you take the inspiration of visionary designer Giorgio Armani and re-create it for the runway? Spalon Montage Master Stylist Adam Livermore found out when he was selected to be a member of Oribe’s style team for the Giorgio Armani Privé Spring 2010 Couture show in Paris. Armani’s inspiration for the couture collection was a view of the moon rising in the night sky. I had the opportunity to sit down with Livermore shortly after he returned from Paris to get his take on the show and Parisian style. Mitchell Wherely: How did the hair team apply elements of Armani’s vision into styles for the runway? Adam Livermore: We created a style with a beautiful, clean curved line that hugged the back of the head and neck, suggesting a crescent moon shape when viewed in profile—A lot like a super-tight French twist but with the top slightly exaggerated. It was very space-age sleek. MW: What did you see on the runway that you would like to see on the street? AL: I saw beautifully tailored suits that were cut in a body-conscious way, but not too overthe-top sexy. It was really refreshing! There can’t be a woman out there who wouldn’t love to have a few pieces she could wear during the day (maybe to work) that are cut to the body in sumptuous fabrics, but still completely dignified. MW: Tell us about working with the supermodels of the moment. AL: It might sound silly, but I often never recognize models I’m styling until we’re done and they’ve gone. Then I’m like, “WAIT... wasn’t that?” Backstage, everything is happening so fast. The moment you finish one model, the next girl is in your chair. You don’t really do names. Oribe asked me to take care of “Karlie.” He kept saying, “Adam, make her look amazing, she needs to look AMAZING!” It wasn’t until I’d finished her that I realized she was gorgeous Karlie Kloss, the new face of Hermés and Dior.

MW: How would you describe Parisian style? AL: Parisian women are amazing: They haven’t declared war on aging like American women have! They have fantastic style, and great hair and makeup. They look their age, which adds a worldly sexiness and mystique that is unmistakably Parisian. MW: Do you have recommendations for integrating Parisian style and sensibilities into daily life? AL: I do! First, elevate your sense of casual. In Paris, you don’t see people on the street in flip-flops and big sloppy ponytails. Making smart decisions about simplifying and polishing your look is the key. Second, invest in a few pieces each season that you will wear forever. I saw people wearing simple but beautiful investment pieces everywhere I went. A perfect pair of leather boots, a versatile, semi-dressy coat or a scarf that you love. Spend the money! You’ll be covered for the next five years.

show stopping

Karlie Kloss stomps the runway in Armani’s spring line. RIGHT Spalon Montage’s Adam Livermore sets the style backstage.

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collage || transportation

English Refinement Jaguar’s new XJ is the latest in innovative thinking.


brand born in the United Kingdom, Jaguar long was synonymous with old-world luxury vehicles of the British upper classes. Through the years, though, Jaguar’s image has become one of remarkable engineering and elegant styling combined with performance. But always there is the unmistakable gleam of traditional English refinement. Jaguar’s latest masterpiece is the XJ, the brand’s flagship luxury sports sedan. It has been called, “A blend of stunning design, intuitive technology and innovative thinking that delivers a remarkable driving experience.” The most popular Jaguar model is the XF. The XF fuses sports-car styling and performance with the elegance, features and interior space of a luxury sedan. The fourdoor XF embodies the Jaguar philosophy: Create beautiful, fast cars and define a new driving experience.

The XK springs from Jaguar’s racing heart. Available in coupe or convertible, this remarkable two-seater is a grand tourer with the heart and soul of a sports car. Jaguar’s sense of adventure is understandable. The company’s roots trace back to the Swallow Sidecar Company, an English manufacturer of a popular line of aluminum motorcycle sidecars. Based in Blackpool, the company was founded by Bill Lyons and William Walmsley in 1922. Eventually their focus switched to automobile production, and in 1933 the company became SS Cars Ltd. The first vehicle to carry the Jaguar name came two years later, the SS Jaguar 100. After World War II, SS Cars became “Jaguar” to avoid any association with the infamous paramilitary organization. Its first postwar offering was the 1948 Mark V. The luxury sedan was joined that year by the XK 120, a sports car that was the fastest production automobile of its day; its name

was derived from its top speed. By the 1950s, Jaguar had begun exporting luxury vehicles to the United States. Created just for the American market, the Mark VII Saloon was introduced in 1951, and Jaguar quickly realized it had a hit on its hands. In 1956, the car took the prize at the Monte Carlo Rally. The 1960s saw the launch of one of Jaguar’s most well-known models: The E-type coupe, or “XK-E,” as it was known in the U.S., blended performance and refinement, wrapped in a sexy package. The success of groups like the Beatles and the Rolling Stones and icons like Twiggy, the fashion model, made British culture a hot commodity during the ’60s—a fact that had positive implications for Jaguar’s popularity in the U.S. Since then, Jaguar has gone through changes, but nothing has altered the company’s spirit and vision, or its spoton sense of both style and substance in automobile design.

fine ride Jaguar’s XJ 2010, the latest masterpiece in luxury sports sedans offers stunning design and intuitive technology. 58 Artful Living

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collage || Q+A

Returning Star The buzz at the recent Couture Week in Paris: Josephus Thimister, fashion designer, made a huge comeback. | written by JANE BELFRY, PHOTOGRAPHY BY JENN CRESS


fter nearly a decade without showcasing, Josephus Thimister debuted his collection at “Couture Week” in Paris this season. Thimister’s raw, military-inspired collection based upon a photo of Emperor Nicholas II’s 13 year old son, as well as World War I has been on everyone’s minds (and blogs). The show drew the likes of Suzy Menkes (Fashion Editor of the International Herald Tribune) and Cathy Horyn (New York Times). I got the chance to sit down with Thimister in his Paris showroom and talked with him about his return, his peers, and of course militaria.

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Jane Belfry: How does it feel to be back in the industry after such a long absence? Josephus Thimister: Tiring. For me, it’s not very exciting. I’ve done so many shows. It’s nothing special. Though, I do think this was one of my best shows. JB: Why did you decide to quit designing in 2001? JT: I didn’t. I had a friend who wanted me to do five garments for them and here they are. I can’t stop. JB: Do you plan on showing a collection next season?

JT: One show is enough [per year]. It is ridiculous for smaller houses to show summer collections. I would prefer to show every winter, both Ready to Wear and couture. Next time I would like to do a smaller presentation. JB: You previously had a collection based on a 1970’s German terrorist group, now World War I Russia. Could you explain your penchant for military-influenced fashion?

I think it is always interesting to have negative influences and turn it into something positive. JT:

When discussing the attendees at his show this season Thimister first mentioned his joy to see up-and-coming designers Haider Ackermann and Bruno Pieters. Both Pieters and Ackermann studied with him, (“It’s like watching your children,” he said fondly). Thimister also shared a bit about his roots as a designer, “I have known that I wanted to design clothes since the age of four.” His family objected. “Now I see why!” he laughed. Thimister was the creative director at the house of Balenciaga in the 1990’s before opening his own house and is said to have taken Balenciaga out from it’s 1980’s ruin. It’s safe to say that Thimister’s return is bright and we can hope for many more collections to come. Artful Living

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collage || events Wayzata Ice Party

The Smile Network

New office location for Lakes Sotheby’s International Realty.

The Smile Network offered a warm welcome at The House of Love this February to benefit the charity.


n February 3rd, guests gathered at Lakes Sotheby’s International Realty in Wayzata for a wonderful evening to celebrate the opening of its new location. Party attendees cooled down at the ice bar and warmed up by the fire; sipping delicious martinis and enjoying s’mores, truly the perfect combination for any winter occasion.


n February, 200 guests gathered at Lowry Hill’s Mount Curve for a luxe evening of lust and love with all proceeds benefiting an amazing charity, The Smile Network, which repairs smiles and lives for children in developing countries. Party attendees had the opportunity to taste and select exquisite wines and wander the elegant home while being discreetly entertained by the Twin Cities’ best lifestyle brands to facilitate Valentine’s day gifting. The event raised over $50,000 for the organization.

stylish soirées

Sotheby’s representative, Jon Meschke attended the event, seen with Lakes Sotheby’s International Realty Jeff Hornig and Olivia Hornig. RIGHT Event goers mingling at the house of love on Mount Curve. 64 Artful Living


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feature || read

Roads Less Traveled Photographer Peter J. O’Toole’s new book shows us his Paris in 14 walks and 135 photos. | by marni ginther

eiffel tower From the Eiffel

Tower Walk.



From the Paris Environs Walk.

rue galande

Seen on the Latin Quarter Walk.

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hen a friend asked him to go on a trip to Paris in 1996, Peter J. O’Toole wasn’t so sure. “I’d never left the country before, so I was a little reluctant,” he recalls. But lucky for us, he did. And he kept going back for several years to take the photographs that now fill the pages of his thought-provoking book, Paris Photos, Paris Walks. At the time of his first trip to Paris, O’Toole was working in finance for the Archdiocese of Minneapolis and St. Paul, and photography was something he had picked up as a hobby in his spare time. Since 1990, he’d been taking photography classes at the University of Minnesota and he’d done a few small exhibitions in his home. But it wasn’t until his friend invited him on the trip that he’d thought of bringing his camera on the road. A nun at the Archdiocese, Sister Isabel, was the one who convinced him to take the leap. “She was such a sweet woman, and took a special interest in my photography. She said to me that every artist needs to go to Paris at least once and practice their art there,” O’Toole recalls. “And as soon as we landed in Paris I was in love. It was infatuation.” His traveling companion was, in O’Toole’s words, “a classic flâneur.” The French term comes from the verb flâner, which means, “to stroll.” There isn’t an exact English translation for flâneur, which stands to reason, since the concept behind it is much more French than American. The term basically refers to someone who walks about the city with no particular destination or purpose, other than simply to take in the city itself. Or as O’Toole puts it, “wandering aimlessly and making an art of it.” And so he was not only struck with the inspiration that the City of Light infuses into the work of so many artists, but also with this flâneur spirit. Year after year, each time he returned to Paris, O’Toole found himself strolling along certain routes over and over, snapping shots as he went. Thus, the book’s format began to take shape. Each chapter is a different one of O’Toole’s favorite walks, complete with a hand-drawn map, descriptions of the walk, and, of course, the photographs he took along the way. “Anyone reading my book is going to have that flâneur experience where you really take in the details of the city,” O’Toole says. He draws readers into the nooks and crannies of Paris that a typical guidebook wouldn’t bother to mention. Of course, the walks cover the essentials, like

the Eiffel Tower, the Arc de Triomphe, and Montmartre. But O’Toole took special care to give readers “the opportunity to duck off into quiet and lesser-trod streets where you can really just breathe and walk slowly.” In this way, O’Toole says, the book isn’t so much a guide to Paris as it is a guide to a frame of mind and a state of appreciation of the city. The book is inspiring not only because it offers a uniquely intimate view of one of the world’s most visited cities, but it also offers an intimate view of O’Toole’s own creative journey as an artist. “I came to art late in life,” he says. Having grown up on a potato farm in North Dakota, studying economics in college and working in finance, art wasn’t a part

of his life in a formal way. But creativity was always encouraged in his family. “I remember things like always making our own birthday cards,” he says. “You know, maybe it wasn’t high art, but it was our art.”

“She said to me that every artist needs to go to Paris at least once and practice their art there.” PETER O’TOOLE

horse’s tavern

And that is the spirit that pervades the book and the photographs within it—the feeling that the art of photography

is accessible, and that the city of Paris is accessible. Anyone can enjoy these things. Anyone can be a flâneur. “People can be intimidated by art and by travel, and they might think they need to have a certain level of knowledge to properly appreciate those things. But if you find something you can be engaged in and passionate about, then run with it,” O’Toole says. “And also, if someone comes up to you and says, ‘Do you want to go to Paris?’ you should take them up on it.” Peter J. O’Toole This hard-bound book is for sale at Common Good Books in St. Paul, the Walker Art Center, BasBleu. com, and

A scene captured while experiencing the Luxembourg Garden Walk.

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feature || fashion

High Style Artful Living Magazine covers Paris Couture Week. | written by jane belfry pHOTOGRAPHY BY JENN CRESS

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Christophe Josse

Christophe Josse’s 2010 couture collection was feminine, light and had a dream-like quality to it. The elegant, long, sensual lines of his gowns are his trademark. Josse’s style evokes Jane Austen–era English roses with a twist of modernity. The delicate laces and chiffon that Josse uses make the garments quite literally float down the runway. For this fairly new couturier, the collection could not have been a greater success.

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feature || fashion


From hair and makeup to run-throughs and interviews, backstage at a major fashion show can be hectic to say the least. The Christophe Josse and Josephus Thimester couture shows this season in Paris were no exception.

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feature || travel

American French In New Orleans’s exuberant tapestry, there are filaments of French gold. | BY JONATHAN LERNER


Detailed Design lafitte guest house

A circa 1849 French-style mansion in the heart of the French Quarter. This property is for sale by Dorian Bennett Sotheby’s International Realty,

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Aside from the French Quarter’s grid of streets, almost nothing physical remains from that time. One surviving French-colonial structure, where you can take a self-guided tour, is the Old Ursuline Convent, completed in 1752. You step through its gates into an austere, geometric parterre garden to find a graceful cypress staircase, crafted originally for the convent’s earlier


ove of food. Passion for luxury. Ardor for display. Rich history, evocative architecture, grand boulevards — there’s even one called Elysian Fields, but don’t mistake it for the Champs-Élysées. This is not Paris, but New Orleans. It’s not exactly foreign, but it certainly is French. Also African, Spanish, Irish, German, Italian, Caribbean, Jewish, Choctaw and more — exotically American that is. In a place with such braided origins, is it possible to pick out strands that are distinctly French? No. And yes. The city was founded in the early 18th century to be the capital of French Louisiana, a huge colonial territory extending north as far as Canada. New Orleans’s original urban design, for the area still called the French Quarter, was a precisely regular grid of streets with a public square and cathedral at its center. This bears no resemblance to the mostly haphazard medieval French towns of the time. But it was an expression of the Enlightenment ideal then prevailing among the country’s elite; picture the symmetrical geometry of Versailles, the royal city outside Paris, erected just a few decades earlier. France retained the Louisiana territory until the 1760s when the Spanish took it. But for most of that time, France’s attitude was one of neglect. A frontier seaport, New Orleans was a natural magnet for entrepreneurs, adventurers, hustlers and exiles who arrived from anywhere and everywhere. The ethnic and cultural gumbo and unrestrained spirit that arose among them then still make the city unique. So in a sense, during the colonial period, France’s most important influence was its lack of influence.

building and said to be the oldest surviving bit of architecture in the Mississippi Valley. There are displays of antique ecclesiastical jewelry, vestments and altar pieces, early New Orleans maps and architectural drawings, and a fascinating scale model of the French Quarter as it looked in 1914, constructed by two jazz-crazed, NewOrleans-loving Parisians. Nearly everything standing in the Quarter now went up in the Spanish era or thereafter, and the dominant architecture is more Caribbean than French. Two surviving houses dating to the French period reveal the difference. The Ossorno House and the one called Madame John’s Legacy are both cottages of a single story raised above ground-level cellars. They are freestanding, set back, with their long sides parallel to the street, and have deep upstairs porches. Most houses in the Quarter, by contrast, hug the sidewalk with their narrow ends, one against the next, and have secluded interior courtyards and narrow iron balconies over the street. Those

were long ago stirred together here. Still, there are restaurants where a French sensibility prevails. You might as well use that criterion to choose where to dine, because unless you move here for good you’ll never manage to eat everywhere people rave about. Several French Quarter establishments have history on their side, resembling classic Parisian brasseries and offering venerable French-Creole cuisine. These include Brennan’s, Arnaud’s, Galatoire’s and Antoine’s where members of the wait staff typically


This remains an authentic neighborhood, with quieter residential streets delightful to stroll. two French-period houses, viewed from outside — your only option, since neither is presently open to the public — suggest a more pastoral, less crowded place than the close, jostling urban center New Orleans became. The French Quarter today is notoriously touristy. You may choose to avoid the raucous bar scene on Bourbon Street, and the trinket shops. But this remains an authentic neighborhood, with quieter residential streets delightful to stroll. Surprisingly, there are a number of large, rather conventional hotels hiding behind old, and new-looks-old, French Quarter facades, but also many small hotels of character. One has an especially strong French connection and historic atmosphere. The Soniat House occupies three circa-1830 townhouses, two of which were built for the son and grandson of a French military engineer who arrived in 1751. The guest rooms vary enormously in size – some are in what were originally slave quarters—but the galleries and serene interior courtyards lend a sense of privacy. Suite 18 seems particularly reminiscent of earlier days: a long, shadowy hallway leads to a pair of high-ceilinged parlors connected by pocket doors, with antique carpets, dark 19th century furniture and a lacy ironwork balcony overlooking the convent. At the New Orleans Museum of Art you can view a collection of 18th and 19th century French Rococo paintings that have a radiant air of frivolity and flirtatiousness. Is it entirely coincidental that during those same centuries New Orleans evolved its famous culture of celebration and eroticism?

Fine Food & Drink

A socially prominent New Orleans attorney recently recalled a departed friend: “We ate through life together,” he said wistfully. This is a city that treasures a good meal, and where it’s hard to find a bad one. More difficult is finding one that is purely, classically French. New World ingredients and worlds of culinary influence

gift from france The people of France gave the city of New Orleans an exact copy of Emmanuel Fermiet’s famous golden bronze statue, Joan of Arc, in 1972. Formally located in front of the International Trade Mart building, the statue was moved in 1999 to its present location in New Orleans French Quarter at the ‘Place De France’ on Decanter Street. The pedestal of the St. Joan’s statue is engraved with the inscription “Joan of Arc, Maid of Orleans 1412-1431.” Artful Living | Spring 2010 75

stick around for decades. Antoine’s peachtoned front room, hung with ornate fans and chandeliers, is lovely at lunch when sunlight streams in. The most French menu choice might be the simplest, “trout meuniere.” These restaurants draw locals, out

of tradition, but due to their fame and location many visitors too. More modern and less touristy French-accented spots are elsewhere in town. In the Central Business District, Lüke has a lively ambiance and hearty Alsatian cooking. Go on Monday for cassoulet as creamy as pudding, enriched with smoked bacon, duck confit and pork sausage studded with whole garlic cloves. The nutty smell of cooking butter permeates the air at Herbsaint, where the earthy food suggests France’s Mediterranean provinces. Baked shrimp with cauliflower, for example, turns out to be an irresistibly rich paella-like baked rice dish. Restaurant August has multiple intimate spaces: a tall front room of exposed brick dressed up with gorgeously glittery chandeliers, and smaller ones luxuriously paneled. Here you can order a la carte, or

from four-or seven-course tasting menus. The food is complex: truffle-crusted veal tenderloin with mustard green risotto, braised onions and madeira-and-truffle sauce perigueux was a recent offering. Magazine Street through the Garden District and Uptown is dotted along its length with charming boutiques and restaurants. At Lilette, in an old storefront with a brick-red interior color scheme, flavors are vivid. You might order a sagescented plate of roast duck with kale, butternut squash and orange-coriander sauce. La Petite Grocery — it was one, once — has a muted, airy saffron-toned decor and a restrained approach. The puréed turnip soup with truffle oil, for instance, is velvety, not rich — with just a hint of refreshing bitterness. Café Degas, in Bayou Saint John, is named for the French Impressionist painter Edgar Degas who once lived up the street. Grilled rib eye served over a garlicky black bean ragout, with truffle-dressed teardrop tomatoes and a strewing of piquant fleur de sel demonstrates the k=itchen’s French bona fides. This relaxed neighborhood spot draws a convivial crowd. But exuberant sociability is everywhere in New Orleans. How much that is a legacy of the city’s French origins is a matter of opinion.

The Soniat House $240-625 nightly,, 800-544-8808 Antoine’s, 504-581-4422 La Petite Grocery, 504-891-3377 Lilette, 504-895-1636 Café Degas, 504-945-5635 Herbsaint, 504-524-4114 Lüke; 504-378-2840 Restaurant August, 504-299-9777

exuberant sociability

Restaurant August is contemporary French eatery with a focus on local ingredients, found among the highest ranking establishments in respected dining guides. RIGHT A guest room at the Soniat House is a step back in time to earlier days.

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Where to Go

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home || exclusive listing

Edina’s New Gem Just minutes from downtown, the new Brownstones on France development is redefining the neighborhood. | BY ALYSSA FORD

The Brownstones on France are for sale. visit FOR A VIDEO TOUR AND MORE INFORMATION.

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“Build me the right place.” For Cora, that meant a home: her own front door, her own distinct space and her own private parking garage.


ora Noonan is one tough cookie. She had seven children in just eight-and-a-half years, she worked the retail floor at Dayton’s for more than 17 years, and even now, at 84 years old, she keeps busy baking and gardening, and drives her own car. So, four years ago, when her kids decided it would best if she moved away from her beloved red-brick two-story in Robbinsdale, she told them she was just fine where she was, thank you very much. The kids iterated that the house was in disrepair, the neighborhood was going downhill, and that she and her husband, Mike, who was then sick with cancer and in a wheelchair, needed a safer, more accessible place to be. (Mr. Noonan has since passed away.) But Cora dug in: no way was she giving up the home they had owned for decades. Then Ed Noonan, the third-born and president of Noonan Construction, asked his mom what it would take to get her to move closer to Edina, where most of her seven kids now live. “Well,” she replied simply, “build me the right place.” For Cora, that meant a home: her own front door, her own distinct space, and her own private parking garage. Her children wanted it to be secure, accessible, eco-friendly, luxurious, and easy as pie for their mom—no snow shoveling, no heavy gardening, no stressful upkeep.

family heirloom LEFT The model unit’s great room offers just a taste of what Noonan Construction can do, from the coffered ceiling with its plaster relief-ceiling medallion, to the twice-dyed Brazilian cherry floors. RIGHT Cora Noonan relaxes in her kitchen at Brownstones on France with son Ed Noonan, president of Edina company Noonan Construction.

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home || exclusive listing

Her children wanted it to be secure, accessible, eco-friendly, luxurious, and easy as pie for their mom.


nd so, inspired by mom, Ed Noonan built the 20-unit Brownstones on France, named for its stately brick exterior and its tony location at 52nd Street and France Avenue South. His recipe is unusual: Brownstones is not a single-family nor a condo development, but something very much inbetween. Homeowners share an underground drive aisle, but park in their own oversized epoxied garages with automatic doors. They share the English-style courtyard with its grand center pergola, paver walking paths, and serpentine-shaped hedges, but each owner has his or her distinct row house. Cora simply unlocks her 2-and-a-quarter-inch solid walnut door, and she’s home. Appropriately, Cora was the first resident to move in, but Brownstones is not exclusively for seniors. In fact, Ed Noonan has found that Cora’s requests—private living with association perks—hits a nerve with baby boomers. In the case of Bob and Ellis Naegele, they had moved from a single-family home on the Lake of the Isles to a condo development in Edina for all the usual reasons—less upkeep, less worry, and fewer possessions to care for. But once there, Ellis found the place pretty institutional, with its staid furniture in the lobby and the hallways, and long hallways filled with the smell of other people’s cooking. She noticed little things, like how she had to walk down two flights of stairs to the shared grilling area, scrape off the grill, and then head back up to her second floor unit to retrieve the “grillables.” Moving into another single-family home was out of the question—the couple spends seven months of the year in Naples, Florida— Brownstones on France seemed the perfect compromise. What completely sold the Naegeles on the Brownstones was the quality of construction. Ed Noonan, who quit his job as a paramedic 34 years ago to pursue his true passion in building, is personally on the job site three times a day. During more than three decades of work in Minneapolis and Edina, Noonan has

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home || exclusive listing put together an internal team of seven master woodworkers including a German cabinetmaker that has been with him for 14-years. That means all work is custom crafted on-site, from the 11-and-a-half-inch baseboards to the intricate rope crown molding. Noonan even insists that every outlet screw is perfectly vertical. On that steadfast foundation, Noonan lays on the luxury finishes: twice-dyed Brazilian cherry floors, embossed pewter countertops, sumptuous bombe cabinets made into sink vanities, and master baths draped in jadecolored marble. For such custom building on a prime parcel of land, the prices are understandably luxurious. For 3,100 finished square feet, a home at Brownstones on France costs $1.425 million. But for the Noonan family, it’s been worth every cent. Cora goes shopping at Southdale, and then parks her white SUV in her private garage. She takes her 950-pound-rated elevator to her top floor entertainment room where she works on jigsaw puzzles, and then back down to her gourmet kitchen with glazed, enameled cabinetry, to make a pan of brownies for visiting grandchildren. Her favorite room, she says, is her bedroom, with wide, south-facing windows overlooking France Avenue, and ample enameled custom cabinetry. The room adjoins her private bath with its jetted soaking tub, marble floors, separate makeup vanity, and generous limestone shower with stone pebble floor. “It just feels wonderful on your feet,” she says. When she’s not perched in her bedroom watching TV, Cora flips on her gas fireplace in her great room, where the intricate ceiling design recalls the classic plaster relief work found in 200-year-old estate homes. Every once in a while, she lunches at Beaujo’s or Salut at 50th and France, now two of her favorite spots. Needless to say, the house in Robbinsdale still holds its happy memories for Cora, but this is home. “I have everything I could ever want,” she says, misting up a little. “My children are so good to me.”

model unit TOP IMAGE

A complex double-barrel-vaulted ceiling overlooks the dining room that opens to a sweet paver deck facing France Avenue. LOWER IMAGE Draped in limestone and marble, the oversized master bath is a testament to the beauty of natural stone.

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home || build

Serious Stone Cambria brings elegance to this Minnesota kitchen. |


tephanie and Erik Heiberg, a married couple in Eden Prairie, Minnesota, are anything but impulsive. When they bought their classic, traditionally styled home eight years ago, they knew they didn’t love the kitchen with its laminate countertops and outdated appliances. But they reasoned it was all cosmetic. “We told each other, ‘we can fix this,” says Stephanie. But the Heibergs didn’t want to rush into anything impulsively, and waste their remodeling dollars. They patiently lived with their unsatisfying kitchen for six long


years before they even started interviewing designers. Meanwhile, they dreamed of colors and patterns, flipped through design books, watched shows on HGTV, and became regular gadflies at the annual Minneapolis Home & Garden Show. Two years ago, when Eric and Stephanie finally got really serious about remodeling their kitchen, they put all their energy into finding the perfect countertop, knowing that for aesthetic and functional reasons, it was a huge part of their as-yet-unrealized dream kitchen. Stephanie toured a house with solid-

surface counters. Together, they ran their hands over granite samples at the Cabinetpak Kitchens showroom in Bloomington. Stephanie spent hours pouring over online reviews, weighing the pros and cons of stone versus solid surface versus slate and soapstone. At the end of the day, for a host of reasons, they picked “Nottingham” from Cambria’s popular Quarry Collection for their new kitchen, and they’ve never looked back. It’s a story that’s being repeated all over the Twin Cities metro, says Paul Zugschwert, owner of Imagine Kitchens in White Bear

sold on stone Cambria’s Nottingham (showed here in a 3-cm eased edge) is part of their innovative Quarry Collection, a set of 28 colors designed with the movement and natural variation of quarry-cut stone.

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fine craft

Cambria’s production facility, located in Le Sueur, Minnesota, receives shipments of raw quartz that are manufactured into slabs of countertops. These slabs go through rigorous quality assurance checks before they are placed into inventory and prepared for shipment. Cambria is the only United States manufacturer of quartz countertops.

Lake. “I’ve been in the kitchen remodeling business for 30 years, and I’ve never seen a new product take off the way Cambria has taken off in the past 10 years.” At its heart, the change is about the proliferation of information. No longer do homeowners have to settle for a quarried piece of granite, pre-sealed with some petroleum-based product in Brazil. Today, the marketplace is filled with inventive, sturdy, exceptionally beautiful products to fit every taste and price range. Cambria in particular has been successful because of its devotion to smart manufacturing processes. Invented by Marcello Toncelli, an Italian engineer and entrepreneur, the technology that produces Cambria countertops are a function of conglomerated quartz minerals. “This product is made of pure and natural quartz, which is one of the hardest and most abundant minerals on earth,” says Marty Davis, President and CEO Cambria USA, “And we use state of the art Italian technology to bond the quartz to create a beautiful stone surface that is nonporous and very resistant to heat and stains.” What this means is that Cambria is one of the few natural-stone options certified by the National Sanitation Foundation to be used in food preparation areas, requiring it to be repeatedly and independently tested for bacterial and liquid absorption at a facility in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Bruce Gebhart, the regional vice president of Midwest sales at Cambria, says the company attempted to go for the very strict NSF rating because it had already done its own lab testing at the plant in Le

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Sueur. “We had a case where we put olive oil on a slab of granite for 24 hours, and afterward you could actually see the oil seeping through to the back,” says Gebhart. “With Cambria, our instruments could detect no liquid absorption.” For moms like Stephanie, that means she can clean up from a dinner party in the morning if she and Eric are too tired. “We

Heiberg’s countertops took just a few hours, with no mix-ups or extra grinding on site. “The contractor promised that our kitchen would be done by Christmas and it was, absolutely,” says Stephanie. “We had our first meal as a family in our new kitchen on Christmas Eve, which was very special.” For Dad Eric, the decision to buy Cambria went all the way back to his

Cambria is one of the few natural stone options certified by the National Sanitation Foundation to be used in food preparation areas. don’t stress out about it,” says Stephanie. “It always cleans up great with just soap and water.” And for the Heilberg kids, Samantha, 8, Bobby, 6, and Sarah, 3, who love to cook mini pizzas and pancakes with mom, they can cut right on the surface, and slop around batter and sauce all they want. When the mess is cleaned up, Stephanie has a stunning kitchen focused around her countertops, with striations of copper, tan, black, onyx, and glinting, crystalline quartz. Kitchen designer Susan Septer—who incidentally chose Cambria for her own home—took inspiration from the Heiberg’s countertop choice to finish the rest of the space, specifying Mandarin-stained cherry cabinets and a framed stone backsplash of New York bluestone. Because every Cambria installer is specifically trained to use special digital templates, the installation of the

childhood. He was raised in Edina by a father who firmly believed in buying Minnesotan, and was attracted to the fact that Cambria employs nearly 450 Minnesotans between its Le Sueur plant and the headquarters in Eden Prairie. “When I would go grocery shopping with my dad, he would always pick up a jar of Gedney pickles and tell me how it’s the right thing to buy from Minnesota companies,” says Eric, a business law attorney at Coleman, Hull & Van Vliet in Bloomington. “So when Stephanie told me the countertops are actually made right in Le Sueur, that was a big, big thing for me.” Alyssa Ford is an award-winning journalist who specializes in architecture and interior design coverage. She lives in Minneapolis.

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home || renovate

History Lessons An iconic 1929 Lake of the Isles Tudor finally comes out of the dark ages. |



r. Faruk Abuzzahab is a patient man. He purchased his 1929 Tudor-style landmark in 1968 and, other than ordinary maintenance, didn’t touch the bones. The original plaster, dark oak floors, exquisite detailed ceilings and carved limestone fireplace surrounds recalled its compelling biography. Designed by architect Ernest Kennedy, the home was originally built for George Clifford, the head of Cream of Wheat, and incorporates whimsical references to the chaff of wheat and the owner’s interest in European history. In 1983, Abuzzahab married Kathryn Buoen; they had two children and raised them in the home. Even with a growing family and through the renovation frenzy of the 1990s, the Abuzzahabs lived peacefully with their original 1929 kitchen, a warren of dark hallways and back stairs with cramped eating quarters and no gathering place. Yet, to Faruk, it seemed sacrilege to alter the iconic form of the home.

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McNeal’s approach was somewhat old-fashioned (and charming) in an age when architects love to leave their own imprint on a project. “I always look at history. A home will remain timeless if you take small steps, not huge leaps, when modernizing a space,” McNeal explains. Here, he started with the unique geometries of the home an oval dining room, a small pentagon hallway, and an octagonal powder room. “The angles were inherent to the home, so I followed these patterns. If you don’t have a strict geometry, if a space is just a series of disjointed walls, you lose the sense of a center and the details


“I always look at history. A home will remain timeless if you take small steps, not huge leaps, when modernizing a space.” JAMES MCNEAL

In 2008, a plumbing crisis required opening the walls of the kitchen. Original tile was removed, and naturally destroyed, in the process. A plumber said, “Well, if you are ever going to update this old kitchen, now would be the time.” With children grown and gone, it seemed easier to manage a renovation in an empty nest and, with the right architect on board, James McNeal of DeNovo Architects, they agreed to modernize the kitchen, pantry and a servant’s sitting room. “Once we met Jim and saw the passion and respect with which he approached the project, we felt at ease,” Kathy says. They bonded over the Tudor style and the PBS show The Tudors: The Six Wives of Henry VIII which was airing at the time. Jim became an archeologist of the home, unearthing the most refined details unusual geometries of the rooms, crown moldings with a cove interface, unique profiles of the oak paneling in the library, and the ornate ceiling design in the living room.

open spaces James McNeal of DeNovo Architects

modernized the kitchen, pantry and the hearth room of the Abuzzahabs’ 1929 Tudor-style manor. “Once we met Jim and saw the passion and respect with which he approached the project, we felt at ease,” Kathy Abuzzahab says.

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get sloppy.” McNeal was in his element. The sophistication of the home and its owners clearly required a contractor with the chops to manage the menagerie of custom details. McNeal recommended Streeter and Associates. The surprise? Streeter had a reputation for being the premier modernist builder in the Twin Cities. But good is good, whether the moldings are traditional or modern, and Scott Harris, senior project manager for Streeter, knew this was a project they wanted in their stable. “We just want happy customers in the end. It was so obvious how much Faruk and Kathy loved this home and would be involved in the project. We love working with that kind of homeowner and including them on our team. My philosophy? There are no wrong answers. You never know who will come up with the best idea or solution. Everyone wanted to do their very best for these terrific people.”


athy carried the mantle of project historian, learning that, because the English and French were so often at war, their aesthetics and decorative styles were traded like baseball cards, back and forth. The fleur de lis, of French origin, became a symbol on the Tudor flag and is carved into the original limestone fireplace in the living room. They hired French stone carver Jean Pierre Jacquet to create authentic limestone surrounds for the French Lacanche range, the hearth room fireplace and for a stone in the center of the turret (back entry) floor. An ebony-stained rift-cut white oak floor presented the most daunting riddle of the project. McNeal wanted to emphasize the geometry of the eight-sided kitchen by laying the boards to compliment the shape. Harris recalls the day that the architect, flooring installer, owner of the flooring company, homeowners and he stood in that kitchen, putting the boards together like a puzzle. The result is a uniquely custom installation with corners meeting in a lacing pattern. A pantry was simply reconfigured to create more storage space, but original cabinets were retained and refurbished. Polished nickel plumbing references the earlier kitchen, and a warm honed Ironstone from Brazil is built up to 6 millimeters and finished with a waterfall edge, giving the counter the heft the kitchen deserves. Kathy was fully hands on and selected all lighting, including the custom-seeded glass in the pendants over the island. And the pale blue ceiling? Faruk wanted it to remind him of the skies of his childhood. The creamy white cabinetry, Ben Moore’s Elephant Tusk, is typical of the color used by French chefs in their restaurants. They swear it is the color that builds an appetite. The hearth room, once a small room for servants with access to their second-story quarters, has been opened up to the kitchen, a place to talk or watch a game on the TV screen hidden within a mirror over the fireplace with a limestone surround. Here, stone carver Jacquet suggested they create crests in the stone, using each of their initials and symbols of their heritage. For Kathy, he carved a Norwegian sailing ship and, for Faruk, a pine tree, from the Lebanese flag. After 40 years of living with the emblems of George Clifford, the Abuzzahabs have put their own mark on this icon of another era and claimed it as their own. And they couldn’t be happier, sometimes wondering, “Why did we wait all these years?”

My philosophy? There are no wrong answers. You never know who will come up with the best idea or solution. SCOTT HARRIS, STREETER design details McNeal collaborated with Scott Harris, Streeter & Associates and French stone carver Jean Pierre Jacquet to incorporate such details as the fleur de lis, seen above in the floor of the turret. 92 Artful Living

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home || retreat

A Piece of Paris Elite Destination Homes helps customers feel at home when traveling abroad.


t’s the classic Parisian dream: Coming home to your very own pied-a-terre in a chic Paris neighborhood. Maybe it’s an apartment you rent, or maybe it’s a property you partially own; either way the Parisian dream might be more attainable than ever before. In its home base of downtown St. Paul, far from the bustling Boulevard St. Germain, Elite Destination Homes is working hard to make clients feel “at home” in France, and all around the world. They believe that when you make the investment and own an apartment, you experience a Paris the tourists never see. From the boutiques to the boulangeries, tying yourself to a pocket of Paris makes the far-away feel familiar. “We want you to be a guest in your own home. There’s absolutely no comparison between staying in a hotel room and staying in your very own apartment,” says Bill Bisanz, CEO and founder of Elite Destination Homes. “What we offer is the joy of owning a property without any of the headaches.” The company’s concept centers on fractional ownership, also known as private co-ownership. They find four or five like-minded people who pool their assets. Then, as a small group, they become the owners of the apartment: Sharing the expenses, the profits, and amount of time spent at the property. If the cost of sole ownership is out of the question, this method provides a realistic and attractive solution. “Do you like to share? That’s the first question I ask, because you have to be comfortable with sharing your assets,” Bisanz says. “If you don’t like to share,

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rue de l’université Elite’s newest Paris apartment.

our model may not be the one for you.” Using mathematical precision, everything is planned with fairness in mind. Water and heating bills, taxes and administration fees are carefully carved out to be equal among the group. Owners are allowed to use the property for 10 weeks a year. Schedules are made out a year in advance, so families can plan their vacations and celebrations around these dates. If you don’t use all the weeks, Elite will help you rent the property. The idea is sitting pretty in Paris where they manage three stylishly decorated apartments in the sixth and seventh arrondissements of the Left Bank. Tucked away in concealed courtyards and hidden on chic streets, the flats are filled with bright light and bold color. They are private and discrete, allowing owners to really experience life in Paris from an insider’s perspective. Once you arrive, everything is set up to make the most of your time off. A special concierge service assists in transportation to and from the airport. And when you step in the door, you’ll find fresh food in the refrigerator and your favorite linens on the bed. Even though you share the space, it’s meant to feel like your private home, with individual storage units holding each owner’s private possessions. Need dinner reservations or passes to a museum? The concierge service helps with that too, along with planning outings for the grandchildren, and tickets to the opera. One owner wanted to escape Paris and go fly-fishing instead. A train ticket and an hour later, he was sporting waders knee deep in the Loire Valley, casting his line into a rushing French river. But with five owners and one apartment, how do you make the space

visually appealing to everyone? What art goes on the wall? What couch, what dining room table? That’s where French designer Gisela Trigano comes in. It was her task to make the three French apartments feel comfortable without being boring—to make them feel stylishly French and comfortably American. Step into the elegant flat on Rue Des Saintes-Peres and you’ll see aubergine-colored couches set off with apple-green drapes cascading to the floor. Ornate mouldings are mixed with marble countertops; antique sculptures sit alongside 21st-century TVs. It’s an artful mix of the historic and the new—a way to modernize the space while still respecting its Parisian bones. The perfect French apartment come to life. And years down the road, what if you decide you want to fall in love with a new location? Well, Elite Destination Homes can help with that too. Once you’re a member of the property “family,” you can trade your time to stay at one of its other properties. From Turks & Caicos, to Los Cabos to Costa Rica, there are plenty of homes to explore. “It’s never ending,” Bisanz says. “I tell people, once you decide you want to share and become part of the family, then you get to share the world.”

rue des saints-pères The living room and bedroom are designed by the celebrated Paris designer, Gisela Trigano.

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home || landscape

Come to Your Senses By focusing on sight, smell, touch and experience, two local design companies build landscapes that change the way their clients live. | by ALYSSA FORD

outdoor serenity

Bill and Amy Radichel chat with friends on their stained concrete patio, buffered by an elegant pool and a raised fire pit. By putting an emphasis on their outdoor living spaces, the Radichels have found that they spend much more time outdoors, and feel mentally and physically better for it.

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ich and Michele Meyer had big plans for their outdoor living oasis at their brandnew house in Shorewood. They talked about roasting s’mores with their kids at the raised natural-stone fire pit. They imagined sipping after-dinner drinks with friends under the custom-cut pergola, softened with creeping vines and gentle Minnesota summer light. The truth is, it’s turned out so much better than that. What the Meyers didn’t expect when they specified a landscape design from Outdoor Excapes in Long Lake, was that the design would draw them to the outdoors so naturally and inexplicably. In the past two years, says Rich Meyer, he has played more games of toss football and catch baseball on the family’s 1,800 yards of vibrant green sod. The Meyers’ two sons, Ian, 7, and Caden, 5, spend all their summer days outside, bounding down the weathered edge Chilton stone steps to the natural stone patio, and out into the lush grass after breakfast. What the Meyers have discovered is that gardens and functional landscape designs have a proven connection to mental and bodily wellness. The buzzword here is “therapeutic horticulture,” and the concept even has its own Journal of Therapeutic Horticulture. Dozens of higher-ed institutions, including the University of Minnesota, offer specialized training in therapeutic horticulture. At the same time, the new trend in hospital design is the “healing garden” and “restorative landscape”, bolstered by research that patients heal quicker and fight depression more successfully when exposed to nature. “Our understanding is that people and plants evolved together so we are pre-disposed, in a sense, to be happy around plants,” says Jean Marie Larson, PhD, program manager for the Center for Therapeutic Horticulture at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. “In fact, the molecular structures of chlorophyll and human blood are strikingly similar.”

Bill and Amy Radichel, a couple in Apple Valley, know that story well. They built a modern-architect-designed house with low-slung eaves and massive windows, and wanted an outdoor environment equally sensitive to their richly forested, four-acre property. To make it happen, they hired Bill’s old college buddy who just happens to be Kevin Keenan, the celebrated landscape architect and co-founder of Keenan & Sveiven in Minnetonka. For his friends, Keenan designed a minimalist patio and pool that spoke to the architecture of the home while directing views to the family’s forested land, and to the trio of tall oak trees just off the fire pit. For the second phase of the design, the Radichels demolished a former neighbor’s home and constructed a serene tennis court with an open-air viewing pavilion surrounded by Autumn Blaze maples and white pines. For the Radichels, just having direct access to a tennis court and a pool has made a huge difference in how much time they spend outdoors. “We never swam, and we weren’t intense tennis players or fans before the court, and now both are just huge parts of our life as a family,” says Bill. But beyond sheer exercise with all its documented benefits, Bill Radichel has noticed something subtler and quieter about having the outdoor oasis: suddenly, he had permission to be still. “I’m not into meditation, or anything like that, but sometimes I feel just like lying in the grass, and I do,” he says. Steve Mitrione, a family physician in Minneapolis as well as a licensed landscape architect, has written extensively about healing gardens, and he notes that the most effective ones have six characteristics: a variety of interesting and unique spaces, places where groups of people can gather and socialize, designated places for exercise and open movement, exposure to nature and natural scenes, direct and honest use of materials and minimal harsh noises or lights. At the base of it all is an awareness of how the body responds to nature and

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how sight, smell and sound impact our experience of being outdoors, says Larson, at the Minnesota Arboretum. Aaron Lutz, a landscape designer at Outdoor Excapes, was keenly aware of the senses when he designed the Meyer landscape, introducing fragrant roses, ornamental trees, crisp boxwoods and more than 40 perennials at the front walk. At the back, boulder and natural stone sitting walls transition into lush yews, viburnums, hostas and ferns, all overlooking a wide backdrop of spruce trees. For the Radichel home in Apple Valley, Keenan specified a mellow combination of fragrant sumac with serviceberry and ginkgo trees. “My hope with any project is to design a space that is at once beautiful, rewarding, and extremely usable,” says Keenan. Both landscapes balance private nooks and gathering

“I think nature really is the best antidote for stress.” BILL RADICHEL

spaces–with smaller patios opening up to larger gathering spaces and more intimate spots for chatting, like the Radichel’s simple fire pit surrounded by a canopy of oaks. Both families have separate dining areas, and eat as many meals as they can al fresco. Meyer, the owner of a golf course renovation firm in Shorewood called Course Craft, has reconnected with his passion for gardening since the new project, taking many hours to feed and water the flowers and to tend to his sod. This past spring, he planted 150 tulips just because he wanted to feel the anticipation for spring. Radichel has cut a small path through the woods on his property, and walks back there just to catch a glimpse of deer hoofing around or squirrels scurrying through the branches. “There’s something about being in the outdoors without any agenda at all,” he says. “I think nature really is the best antidote for stress.”

warmth of the fire

Outdoor Excapes gave Rich & Michelle Meyer a new neighborhood destination; it’s the place to be for roasting marshmallows and laughing the night away.

home || design

inviting space O’Brien’s open living room welcomes guests into her Edina home. 102 Artful Living

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A Few of Her Favorite Things Deb O’Brien has the time of her life furnishing her Edina home. | BY Alyssa Ford


n all counts, Deb O’Brien got the dream scenario. And it all came together by happenstance, as wonderful things sometimes do. This was the genesis: It was early 2008, and O’Brien had leveled her creaky, 1960s Edina rambler with big plans of building from scratch with the custom-builder Greg Narr, principal of Narr Construction. In the midst of building this five-bedroom, 6,370-square-foot home with soaring gambrel ceilings, Brazilian cherry floors, and a stunning floor-to-ceiling fieldstone fireplace, Narr knew O’Brien needed a certain kind of interior design firm to furnish such a high-end and massive project. For her, he recommended Martha O’Hara Interior Design, a venerated firm celebrating its 20th anniversary in 2010. Though the O’Hara firm itself makes a point of never scheduling appointments out more than two weeks, O’Brien actually had senior designer Carrie Kirby-Rodman in her home in just a few days. The pair chatted about her furniture, her favorite colors, her beloved Ragdoll cats, and how O’Brien imagined her Narr-built rambler coming together as a finished home with all the trimmings. “The thing about interior design is, you have to get into somebody’s head, and you have to do it fast,” says Kirby-Rodman, who immediately noted O’Brien’s taste for warm, traditionally styled case goods and accessories with a touch of metallic. The duo carefully discussed every single piece of furniture in O’Brien’s home, talking about which ones would get promoted to the new house. When that was done, they went to her storage facility and did it all over again, pulling out a silvery iron bed with elegant ball posts. “Clearly, it always helps when the client has good taste,” says

Kirby-Rodman. “Deb was particularly great because not only does she have great taste, but she’s a bit of a risk taker too.” Kirby-Rodman and firm principal Martha O’Hara took that research and created a floor plan for each room in the new home, incorporating every piece of furniture O’Brien wanted to keep with her, and then specifying a spending budget for each room. “Talking about the budget upfront is extremely important,” says firm founder Martha O’Hara. “Once everyone’s on the same page, then the client can relax and have fun, and we can have fun, too.” As the project progressed, O’Brien and Kirby-Rodman talked in person at least once a week, and many times twice a week, and there were numerous phone calls in between. All told, O’Brien and Kirby-Rodman estimate that in four months, they saw each other 30 times, and had more than 100 phone conversations. O’Brien got in the habit of swinging by the O’Hara office in Hopkins to say “hello” and check in on the progress. “Every time I went in there, I saw one or maybe even two of my rooms laid out on a table, being worked on,” says O’Brien.

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“When we’re all having such a fabulous time together, it’s inevitable that lasting friendships should follow.”

creative teamwork The bathroom design was a collaboration of like minds: “Clearly it always helps when the client has open taste.” 104 Artful Living

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Some days, the firm would bring in a few refreshments, and the crew and client would “kick back” to look over fabulous fabrics and swoon-worthy wall coverings. Kirby-Rodman would happily gather in the other interior designers to supply their opinions and concepts to the O’Brien project. “I got to know all the interior designers—Darsi, Laura, Mary, Jayme,” says O’Brien. “It was like I was getting the eyes and expertise of a whole group of people.” To supply a fresh look to the magnificent new home, the firm got creative with the furnishings O’Brien already owned. A slipper chair upholstered in gold and maroon stripes found new life in a crisp check “strié” with hints of pool blue. For the lowerlevel entertainment room, Kirby-Rodman used three orphaned barstools from O’Brien’s former home. She upholstered them, had them cut down to chair height, and ordered a matching table and fourth chair. Voilá: a stunning game table. Even the arrangement of furnishings took on an inventive edge. A grand secretary that formerly held court in a library got reinvented as a surprising chest of drawers for a guest bedroom. A dining-room mirror took on new prominence in another bedroom. Even as the firm worked to present designs that melded with O’Brien’s taste, Kirby-Rodman and the other designers also pushed their client to explore and dream big. They presented a regal wallpaper from Osborne & Little with a pattern of stylized, shimmery magnolia blossoms on a background of fierce violet. “Obviously I love my taste,” says O’Brien, gesturing around at the wallpaper in her powder bath, clearly still in love after two years. “But left to my own devices, I don’t think I ever would have been brave enough to choose this for myself.” For a lower level guest suite, O’Brien went with a bold, wine red for the walls. At the entryway and down a long hallway, she specified a gold and cream brocaded wallpaper that sets off a sharp contrast with the fieldstone fireplace. “Deb asked me if it was okay to wallpaper a whole entryway like that, and I told her, ‘Of course! That’s marvelous,’” says Kirby-Rodman. After all 27 spaces were finished in just four months, O’Brien felt a tinge of bittersweet. “I had such a ball, I almost wished I had another house to fill,” she says. But she soon discovered the best part of the project—her newfound friendships—didn’t have to end. Since completing her work with Martha O’Hara Interiors, O’Brien has hosted dinner parties for the staff, and kept up with the goings-on at the firm, becoming a dear friend and a regular at firm open houses and tour events. “We’re not selling life insurance, we’re selling joy, comfort, and yes—fun,” says Martha O’ Hara. “When we’re all having such a fabulous time together, it’s inevitable that lasting friendships should follow.” Artful Living

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The Property Gallery presented by LAKES Sotheby’s International Realty includes a

selection of properties within the Twin Cities area, Greater Minnesota, and Western Wisconsin. The Sotheby’s International Realty® global network includes nearly 500 offices in 39 countries. Enjoy.

Twin Cities Gallery

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Beyond the Twin Cities


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1. David Abele

11. Jim Grandbois

21. Kent Marsh

31. Jill Roffers

2. Dewey Bakken

12. Garry Haas

22. Brandon Mayfield

32. Anne Shaeffer

3. Sandra Burt

13. Denise Hertz

23. Molly McCrea

33. Todd Shipman

4. Mike Buenting

14. Joanne Hitch

24. Debbie McNally

34. Jacob Smith

5. Belle Davenport

15. Mark Hoiseth

25. Craig Mische

35. Christa Thompson

6. Rebecca Davenport

16. Jeff Hornig

26. Jenny Nelson

36. David Tonneson

7. Shelly Erving

17. Jim Hornig

27. Seth Nelson

37. Joe Wahl

8. Kimberly Falker

18. Olivia Hornig

28. Julie Regan

9. Bryan Flanagan

19. Ben Kolkman

29. Robin Roberts

10. Pam Gerberding

20. Jill Lepine

30. Frank Roffers

Main Office: 952. 230. 3100 Edina: 4388 France Ave South

Wayzata: 155 East Lake Street, Suite 200

twin cities gallery

4877 Rolling Green Parkway Edina, MN Offered at $2,895,000

|| edina + minneapolis

Bedrooms: 6 Bathrooms: 7 Debbie McNally Group TEL: 612.388.1790

2505 East Lake of the Isles Pkwy Minneapolis, MN Offered at $5,300,000 Bedrooms: 5 Bathrooms: 7 Debbie McNally Group TEL: 612.388.1790

1721 Mount Curve Avenue Minneapolis, MN Offered at $2,950,000 Bedrooms: 7 Bathrooms: 11 Debbie McNally Group TEL: 612.388.1790

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twin cities gallery

Brownstones on France

|| edina

Custom built in the heart of Edina, blending classic elegance with timeless luxury and architecture, plus all the conveniences of today’s lifestyle. These spacious residences showcase craftsmanship, exclusivity, security, quality and an unsurpassed attention to detail. Each home within the 20-unit development offers a homeowner their own opportunity to customize the interior living spaces to suit individual needs and wants. Visit for a video tour of this home.

5200 France Avenue S Edina, MN Starting at $1,050,000 (Shell Only) Total FSF from 3,215 to 4,465 Roffers Group/Jacob Smith TEL: 612.867.5667 Open House Sundays, 1 to 3pm

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twin cities gallery

4506 Moorland Avenue Edina, MN Offered at $1,395,000

|| edina

Bedrooms: 5 Bathrooms: 4 Jill Roffers TEL: 952.230.3135

5228 Kellogg Avenue Edina, MN Offered at $999,000 Bedrooms: 4 Bathrooms: 5 Roffers Group/Jacob Smith TEL: 612.867.5667

5012 Kelsey Terrace Edina, MN Offered at $995,000 Bedrooms: 5 Bathrooms: 5 Roffers Group/Jacob Smith TEL: 612.867.5667

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twin cities gallery

Howards Point

|| shorewood

Unique opportunity to own one of Lake Minnetonka’s seven points. This updated Northwoods styled home offers lake views from every room. It sits on approximately 2 wooded acres, and boasts 1000’ of lakeshore. There is a boathouse/guest house at the water’s edge, screened gazebo, two docks, plus hard sand beach with amazing East and West views. Move in or build your dream home on this private peninsula! Sunrise, sunset, you will have it all!

5170 Howards Point Shorewood, MN Offered at $2,895,000 Bedrooms: 3 Bathrooms: 3 Roffers Group/Jacob Smith TEL: 612.867.5667

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twin cities gallery

2800 Woolsey Lane Woodland, MN Offered at $4,750,000

|| woodland + orono

Bedrooms: 4 Bathrooms: 6 Debbie McNally Group TEL: 612.388.1790

1520 Bohns Point Road Orono, MN Offered at $4,295,000 Bedrooms: 5 Bathrooms: 48 Debbie McNally Group TEL: 612.388.1790

1801 West Farm Road Orono, MN Offered at $1,795,000 Bedrooms: 4 Bathrooms: 6 Debbie McNally Group TEL: 612.388.1790

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twin cities gallery

|| tonka bay

315 Lakeview Tonka Bay, MN

Offered at $2,495,000 Bedrooms: 5 Bathrooms: 4 Visit for a video tour of this home. Roffers Group/Jacob Smith TEL: 612.867.5667

305 Lakeview Tonka Bay, MN

Offered at $999,000 Lot only. 305+315 Lakeview are adjacent parcels and can be combined for a total of 175 feet of south facing, level lakeshore. Roffers Group/Jacob Smith TEL: 612.867.5667 Artful Living | Spring 2010 113

twin cities gallery

|| medina + dunn township 1516 Hunter Drive Medina, MN

Offered at $3,500,000 Bedrooms: 4 Bathrooms: 6 North Ridge Farm Estates, 8+ Acres Todd Shipman TEL: 952.230.3117

51493 225th Avenue Dunn Township Hertz & Gerberding

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Offered at $3,400,000 Bedrooms: 3 Bathrooms: 5

twin cities gallery

4510 Moorland Avenue Edina, MN

4517 Rutledge Avenue Edina, MN

4832 Maple Road Edina, MN

2727 Ashbourne Road Minnetonka, MN

4600 Casco Avenue Edina, MN

4500 Oak Drive Edina, MN

2280 W Lake of the Isles Pkwy Minneapolis, MN

2616 44th Street Minneapolis, MN

1004 Mt Curve Avenue Minneapolis, MN

Offered at $1,625,000 Bedrooms: 5 Bathrooms: 5 Anne Shaeffer TEL: 952.230.3121

Offered at $1,169,000 Bedrooms: 4 Bathrooms: 6 Ben Kolkman TEL: 952.230.3157

Offered at $550,000 Bedrooms: 4 Bathrooms: 4 Belle & Rebecca Davenport TEL: 952.230.3113

Offered at $549,000 Bedrooms: 3 Bathrooms: 2 Roffers Group/Jacob Smith TEL: 612.867.5667

Offered at $1,695,000 Bedrooms: 4 Bathrooms: 4 Jim Grandbois TEL: 952.230.3147

Offered at $1,595,000 Bedrooms: 4 Bathrooms: 4 Anne Shaeffer TEL: 952.230.3121

Offered at $839,000 Bedrooms: 4 Bathrooms: 3 Anne Shaeffer TEL: 952.230.3121

Offered at $599,000 Bedrooms: 3 Bathrooms: 2 Anne Shaeffer TEL: 952.230.3121

Offered at $2,595,000 Bedrooms: 6 Bathrooms: 5 Hornig & Associates TEL: 952.230.3165

Offered at $1,650,000 Bedrooms: 5 Bathrooms: 7 Debbie McNally Group TEL: 612.388.1790

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|| edina + minneapolis

4612 Drexel Avenue Edina, MN

twin cities gallery

2425 Irving Avenue South Minneapolis, MN

2526 Thomas Avenue South Minneapolis, MN

1000 West Minnehaha Pkwy Minneapolis, MN

2815 45th Street Minneapolis, MN

2719/21 Dean Pkwy Minneapolis, MN

18320 Breezy Point Road Woodland, MN

2760 Deer Run Trail Orono, MN

1980 6th Avenue N Orono, MN

855 Medina Road Medina, MN

925 Foxberry Farms road Medina, MN

|| minneapolis + woodland + orono + medina

Offered at $1,385,000 Bedrooms: 4 Bathrooms: 5 Debbie McNally Group TEL: 612.388.1790

Offered at $1,250,000 Bedrooms: 4 Bathrooms: 4 Ben Kolkman TEL: 952.230.3157

Lot price $499,000 Hornig & Associates TEL: 952.230.3165

Offered at $1,395,000 Bedrooms: 3 Bathrooms: 5 Debbie McNally Group TEL: 612.388.1790

Offered at $1,145,000 Bedrooms: 4 Bathrooms: 5 Debbie McNally Group TEL: 612.388.1790

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Offered at $1,175,000 Bedrooms: 4 Bathrooms: 5 Hornig & Associates TEL: 952.230.3165

Offered at $734,900 Bedrooms: 5 Bathrooms: 3 Jim Grandbois TEL: 952.230.3147

Offered at $2,495,000 Bedrooms: 4 Bathrooms: 3 Hornig & Associates TEL: 952.230.3165

Offered at $924,000 Bedrooms: 3 Bathrooms: 4 Debbie McNally Group TEL: 612.388.1790

Offered at 649,000 Bedrooms: 5 Bathrooms: 4 Mike Buenting TEL: 952.230.3180

Offered at $1,145,000

Roffers Group/Jacob Smith TEL: 612.867.5667 New construction on Big Carnelian Lake. Visit for a video tour of this home.

18575 Heathcote Drive Deephaven, MN

3962 Forest Court Minnetrista, MN

1430 Knob Hill Lane Chanhassen, MN

18215 13th Avenue N Plymouth, MN

3539 Eben Way Stillwater, MN

XXX Lost Girl Island Morse Township

Offered at $899,000 Bedrooms: 4 Bathrooms:3 Joanne Hitch TEL: 952.230.3189

Offered at $648,500 Bedrooms: 5 Bathrooms: 4 Mike Buenting TEL: 952.230.3148

Offered at $500,000 Bedrooms: 5 Bathrooms: 4 Joe Wahl TEL: 952.230.3123

Offered at $599,000 Bedrooms: 4 Bathrooms: 4 Joanne Hitch / Debbie McNally Group TEL: 952.230.3189

Offered at $600,000 Bedrooms: 4 Bathrooms: 3 Belle & Rebecca Davenport TEL: 952.230.3113

Offered at $600,000 Nelson2 TEL: 952.230.3110

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|| deephaven + minnetrista + chanhassen + plymouth + stillwater + morse twp

Bedrooms: 6 Bathrooms: 6

twin cities gallery

13020 Panorama Avenue North Stillwater, MN

beyond the twin cities

2450 Cliff View Circle Two Harbors, MN Offered at $649,000 Bedrooms: 5 Bathrooms: 4

|| two harbors + tofte + hovland

Lavonne Christensen TEL: 612.867.2943

40 Surfside Drive Tofte, MN Offered at $235,000 Bedrooms: 3 Bathrooms: 3 Roffers Group TEL: 952.237.1100

4804 Chicago Bay Road Hovland, WI Offered at $995,000 Bedrooms: 3 Bathrooms: 2 Roffers Group TEL: 952.237.1100

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spotlight || craftsmanship

It’s Complicated Franck Muller has made a brilliant career out of making multi-functional watches. | by DAVID MAHONEY


t’s often said that time is money. In the case of Franck Muller’s latest wristwatch, time is a lot of money: $2.7 million, to be exact. The limited-edition Aeternitas Mega 4 certainly lives up to the Swiss watchmaker’s billing as “The Master of Complications.” In fact, with nearly 1,500 components and 36 complications (special features that go beyond the standard timekeeping functions), it may very well be the most complicated watch ever made. It’s a fitting legacy to the man who began making watches under his own name less than 20 years ago—a mere blink of an eye in the timehonored world of watch manufacturers. Several years before that, in the mid-1980s, Franck Muller patented his own tourbillon—the holy grail of complications and a true rarity in wristwatches at the time. Since starting his own company in 1991, Muller has patented a steady stream of watch breakthroughs. Andy Furman of Continental Diamond in St. Louis Park, where Franck Muller watches range in price from $5,500 to nearly $25,000, points to innovation as one of the distinguishing features of Franck Muller’s watches. As examples, he cites features such as Crazy Hours, in which the positions of the hour numbers are scrambled and the hour hand jumps around the dial accordingly, and the Master Banker, which displays the time in three time zones simultaneously, all controlled by a single crown. As important as what makes Franck Muller watches tick, Furman claims, is their distinctive styling. “He re-popularized the tonneau shape,” Furman says, referring to the barrel-shaped cases

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found on many of Franck Muller’s watches. Continental’s bestseller is a tonneau-shaped Cintrée Curvex with an 18-carat rose-gold case that arcs gracefully to match the natural curve of the wrist. Limited production also adds to the appeal of Franck Muller watches, says Furman, who recently sold a limited-edition watch that was one of only 50 of its kind made by the company. One of the watches currently in Continental’s Franck Muller showcase, a King Conquistador Chronograph with a satin-finish case and a $23,600 price tag, is part of a 200-piece edition. While particular models may be limited in number, the variety of options generally available in Franck Muller watches is vast, with a seemingly endless selection of straps, case size and shapes, dial colors, and number designs, not to mention extra trimmings such as diamonds. Then, of course, there are all those complications: minute repeaters, perpetual calendars, lunar phase indicators, and retrograde second and hour hands—these are just a few of the mechanical elaborations that fascinate collectors like Sir Elton John, who reportedly owns almost 200 of Franck Muller’s intricate creations. In fact, with so many choices available, the most complicated thing about Franck Muller watches may just be the process of picking out the perfect one.

Common Complications Complications are watch features that go beyond the basic timekeeping functions and increase a watch’s value. These are some of the most common complications: Chronograph: Essentially a stopwatch within a watch, this is a selective timekeeping function that starts and stops with the push of a button. The controlled hands can be center-mounted or have their own “subdials.” Perpetual Calendar: A date-keeping mechanism that takes into account the varying days in a month as well as leap-year cycles. This is usually done with subdials indicating the day of the week, the date, and the month. A moon phase indicator is also often included. Minute Repeater: At the push of a button, hammers strike tiny gongs to sound the hours, quarter-hours, and minutes. Tourbillon: An elaborate device intended to counteract the variable effects of gravity on a watch in different positions. The escapement, which is the fundamental timekeeping mechanism, is placed in a small cage that allows it to revolve. Watchmakers usually put a window in the dial to allow the tourbillon to be seen in motion.

keeping time opposite page Frank Muller’s complicated watch series includes The King from the Conquistador series, and the Cintrée Curvex 8880 SC DT 5N pictured above. Artful Living | Spring 2010 123 Artful Living

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spotlight || good

Letting Zoë Bee Palliative care helped a family make the most of a child’s short life. | BY SALLY SPECTOR


fter two boys, the news that our third pregnancy would bring us a longed-for daughter thrilled our entire family. Regular prenatal testing indicated that we would soon have a healthy baby girl. Yet a persistent voice inside my head kept telling me that something was wrong. I hoped my fears were unfounded. Sadly, they were not. Our daughter, Zoë Bee, was born on October 10, 2003, with a host of unexpected birth defects, the result of a genetic syndrome so rare that the causative gene would not be identified until after her first birthday. While she was still in the neonatal intensive care unit at Children’s Hospital in Minneapolis, we learned Zoë had heart defects, a seizure disorder, hearing loss, multiple airway anomalies and a severely impaired immune system. Despite multiple early surgeries, these and other problems made us realize that we had to accept the very real possibility that Zoë might not be with us for long. The doctors had more recommendations for

further procedures. Much of what they suggested, though, seemed like something that was going to be done to her rather than for her. My husband Alex and I grieved for ourselves, for our boys, and for our sweet, beautiful baby girl. Then we heard about palliative care. The World Health Organization defines palliative care for children as “the active total care of the child’s body, mind and spirit, and also involves giving support to the family.” For children with life-limiting conditions, palliative care focuses on relieving suffering and enhancing quality of life, rather than on curing illness. The pediatric pain and palliative care program at Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota, led by Stefan Friedrichsdorf, MD, is the largest in North America. Using an integrative, holistic approach to improve a child’s quality of life wherever they are, the program serves 80 to 90 children each day through hospital, clinic and home-based services. For Friedrichsdorf, it’s not simply about adding days to the life of a child cared for by

the program. “The goal,” he says, “is to add life to the child’s days.” Initially, our palliative care plan called for us to take Zoë home and keep her out of the hospital for however long she lived. Cared for at home with the help of a devoted team of home care nurses and aides and a specialeducation teacher, Zoë started surprising us with her delayed but persistent development. Though still medically fragile and chronically ill, this was one determined little girl—and, oh, the life she had in her days! She walked (against all odds) by her fourth birthday. She had a huge sign language vocabulary and “talked” constantly—even signing to herself while playing. She joined us on family vacations and demanded that she get her turn driving the boat with her daddy. She went to school on the bus. She loved books, especially after she got her glasses. She rode her trike, drew with chalk on the driveway, went shopping and cruised the neighborhood in her stroller looking for dogs and stone lions. We adjusted our palliative care plan in

Help Take Away the Pain With its unique multidisciplinary approach, Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota is setting new standards of care across the country for the treatment of childhood pain. The pain and palliative care program strives to improve the quality of life of children suffering from acute or chronic pain through hospital- and home-based services, as well as through its Interdisciplinary Pain Clinic. To support the pain and palliative care program or to learn more about it, contact Carley M. Stuber at 612 813-7093, or visit the program’s website at

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response to her development. With every new gain we hoped for more. At the same time, Kaci Osenga, MD, another member of the Pain and Palliative Care program discussed with us how to handle the “what-ifs” in the event we needed to make endof-life decisions for Zoë. Osenga told me not to be afraid. She said I would know what to do if that day ever came, and that she would there to help us if it did. That day came on June 11, 2009. For only the third time in her life, Zoë went to Children’s Hospital because of an illness. Osenga had been right: I did know Zoë was dying. With Osenga and our treatment plan to guide us, Alex and I were able to give Zoë a gentle, peaceful, beautiful death. Her brothers and her grandparents got to tell her goodbye. Her dad and I held her and sang to her as she left. And Osenga and the rest of the staff at Children’s made sure that her passing was pain-free. My experience has led me to come up with my own definition of this remarkable approach: Palliative care is what you need. When Zoë needed to be home, Children’s palliative program helped her to be home. When we needed the hospital resources to make sure her death was both painless and peaceful, the program provided those, too. To me, the palliative program is where compassion lives at Children’s Hospital. For our family, that meant that when it came to caring for Zoë, we were in it together, but we were never alone.

team effort PREVIOUS PAGE Teacher Lois Rogers-Killian

and a friend help Zoë run towards first base during her first kickball game. ABOVE The Pain and Palliative Care team at Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota offers patients a program that utilizes a combination of state-of-the-art pharmacology, physical therapy, and integrative therapies such as massage, hypnosis, and acupuncture.

spotlight || private aviation

Take Off Jet travel can be a convenient, flexible and cost-effective mode for businesses. | BY GINNY WENNEN

D “Private aviation is indeed an economical and convenient solution for business travelers.” HEATHER MUIR OF KEY AIR

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oes business jet travel seem excessive, especially during these challenging economic times? Not so, claim many executive travelers who choose charter air over commercial. Time is money in business. So saving time through business jet travel is a smart economic choice. Whether you need to be in multiple cities in a day, or arrive the same day at a destination half way around the world, corporate jet travel through a provider such as Key Air based at the Anoka CountyBlaine Airport, located 10 miles north of Minneapolis, makes sense on many levels. “Increasingly, business is being conducted on a global basis,” says Heather Muir, director of marketing at Key Air. “By using business jets, your travel and destination options are virtually open ended. In addition, privacy, flexibility and safety are cited repeatedly by our clients as top reasons for choosing a private charter service partner these days.” For more than 25 years, Key Air has been providing charter jet service for business travelers regionally, nationally and internationally. Key Air has one of the newest fleets of late-model business aircraft in the industry. And combined with the company’s 24-hour concierge services, on-board gourmet catering, and highly trained and skilled pilots and crew, Key Air is gaining popularity among many Twin Cities—based business travelers. “On board, our travelers find what they need to conduct business, and desire comfortable seating to A/V equipment. Or, if they need to catch a little rest before hitting the ground running, our jets provide them that option as well,” Muir says. “In addition, with no strangers on board, our travelers can prepare for a big presentation,

or conduct confidential meetings in ultimate privacy.” Key Air also has a reputation for its ability to deliver a more efficient and streamlined alternative at their airport operation bases that are not co-mingled with the often-congested commercial airports. “There’s no need to arrive two or more hours early for one of our flights, or stand in long security lines while checking in,” Muir says. “Our business travelers avoid delayed connections, over-booked flights, long walks between terminals and even airport parking shuttles. We tailor their flights according to their schedule, destination and unique needs.” So is the convenience, flexibility and nearly hassle-free travel provided by a charter jet company such as Key Air cost-prohibitive for most businesses? A recent study by BusinessWeek magazine revealed that the cost of commercial trans-continental tickets for a group of four executives traveling together exceeded the price tag for private jet travel. And when you factor in the cost to the company of an executive’s time being lost in dealing with flight delays and other disruptions, charter jet travel was by far the more logical option. “Private aviation is indeed an economical and convenient solution for business travelers,” Muir concludes. “On our jets, you can bring on that bottle of water, use your cell phone and other electronic equipment during the flight, stow bags on board and arrive at your destination sooner. So if time, convenience, privacy and productivity are important to your business, charter air travel is the way to fly.”

high-flying style

The lounge and OPPOSITE planes at Key Air in Blaine, Minnesota provide luxurious, private travel for businesses. ABOVE

spotlight || note

Landmark Luxury The Saint Paul Hotel kicks off a centennial celebration. |

by marni ginther


he evening of April 18, 1910 was one for the books in Minnesota’s capital city. Carriages and automobiles crowded downtown St. Paul as they conveyed their venerable guests to what was sure to be one of the splashiest parties the city had ever seen. The St. Paul Pioneer Press recounted the festivities in the next day’s paper: “A fanciful buffet Russe was set up, where caviar, anchovies

“Historical properties create a sense of place; a sense of the culture and the people.” BILL MORRISEY

and other Slavonic dainties were served, and where martinis and highballs could be had for the asking… Roses were everywhere, not in confusion, but each cluster part of a most artistic whole…. The orchestra discoursed soft music while the guests were taking their seats…”. The occasion? The grand opening of The Saint Paul Hotel. In attendance were “more than 300 of the Northwest’s most prominent men,” including railroad tycoon James J. Hill and “scores of men whose names stand high in trade and financial circles.” The guest list alone was enough proof that this wasn’t just a hotel opening—it was a sign of the city’s progress, and of the progress of a territory that had only graduated to statehood 52 years earlier. “The Saint Paul Hotel holds a very special place in Minnesota history,” says David Miller, the hotel’s general manager since 2007. “Because of our founders’ commitment to making this the finest first-class luxury and business hotel

distinguished guests Among the hotel’s most famous guests are former presidents George W. Bush, Bill Clinton,

George H. W. Bush, John F. Kennedy, Herbert Hoover and Theodore Roosevelt, whose signature is pictured here in the guestbook.

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in what they called the ‘Western’ United States, the Saint Paul Hotel has hosted U.S. presidents, international leaders, royalty, gangsters, movie stars, athletes, business leaders, brides and grooms—these walls have seen thousands of memorable moments.” Therefore, it’s only fitting that downtown St. Paul’s landmark hotel should celebrate all throughout 2010, the year of its 100th birthday. Special events and promotions will be held at different times through the year, but since 2010 has only just begun, not all the plans are finalized yet. One promotion includes a special $100-per-night price, based on availability. Other events and promotions will “reward and honor present and past employees and patrons, because those are the people that help make the Saint Paul Hotel what it is,” says Bill Morrissey, president of Morrissey Hospitality Companies, which manages the hotel. This year, the historic property also created a float for one of Minnesota’s most historic traditions—the Winter Carnival Grand Day Parade. Morrissey says the hotel plans to keep using the float not only in the Twin Cities, but also in other parades and festivals throughout Minnesota cities.


orrissey himself has a long history with the hotel, having begun working there in the 1980s in the hotel’s sales department. “Anybody associated with the Saint Paul Hotel has to be very humble and appreciative of being part of something that’s been around for 100 years,” he says. “It has been a part of so many people’s special moments—think of all the weddings, anniversaries and birthdays at the hotel and the restaurant. And that’s really what we’re celebrating this year. It’s the memories that happen inside the hotel. Otherwise it’s just brick and mortar. Those moments are what hospitality is all about.” On the hotel’s Web site, past patrons and employees are encouraged to submit their favorite stories of personal experiences at the hotel. They will then be eligible to win a one-night stay, and their memories will be collected and printed in a commemorative book. “The hotel has changed ownership over the years, and we know there are great stories out there, but not all of them were necessarily documented,” Morrissey says. “So that’s why we’re reaching out to the public.”

Some intriguing historical anecdotes have been recorded, however. For example, throughout the 1920s and ’30s, the gangster Leon Gleckman conducted his business from a suite in the hotel. Known as “the Al Capone of St. Paul,” Gleckman was eventually followed by Mike Malone, a U.S. Treasury Department official who had investigated Capone in Chicago. Malone rented a room in the hotel to keep an eye on Gleckman’s dealings. During the same era, at the height of Prohibition, hotel bellhops stood at the ready with envelopes of cash, waiting for clandestine liquor deliveries. Notable political and cultural figures have stayed at the hotel too, including crooner Gene Autry and former presidents George W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George H. W. Bush, John F. Kennedy, Herbert Hoover and Theodore Roosevelt. Musician and television personality Lawrence Welk started playing regularly at the hotel in the summer of 1937. Although celebrities, presidents, gangsters and Prohibition make for some good stories, Morrissey finds that the real value of the hotel’s history lies in what it can still offer guests today. “Historical properties create a sense of place; a sense of the culture and the people,” he says. “Say you go to Chicago on business and you stay a few nights in a Courtyard Marriott. Well, did you go to Chicago? Or did you go to a Courtyard Marriott?” Although it seems that a sense of local culture and St. Paul pride would become infused into any institution that has stood in the city for 100 years, it is perhaps a characteristic especially unique to the Saint Paul Hotel. It was, after all, born out of the camaraderie of Minnesota businessmen, joining their efforts to bring their young city and state into a new century by erecting the hotel as a monument to progress and economic growth. As the St. Paul Pioneer Press wrote the day after the grand opening: “Conviviality and good fellowship ran riot for the two hours that the banquet dinner lasted. The spirit that has made the city of St. Paul and has found new expression in the beautiful new hotel, which was dedicated not only to the city but to the state and the entire Northwest, prevailed last night.” And so it continues to prevail, throughout the year of the Saint Paul Hotel’s 100th birthday.

postcards from 1912

The Saint Paul Hotel’s lobby left and dining room RIGHT were among the city’s most luxurious places to see and be seen when the hotel first opened in the early 1900s.

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spotlight || leisure

Un Jour Parfait A Paris One artist’s guide to a perfect day in Paris. |


hat’s your perfect day in Paris? It’s a question I can answer in five minutes; but it took me 15 years to find out. It’s a day filled with fashion and food, markets and museums. It’s a day that slowly unfolds on its own through my favorite sixth arrondissement. Every year, for a month or more at a time, my husband and I rent a charming flat on the Left Bank (6ème): the same apartment on the same street, in the same neighborhood. That’s the secret to Paris: Break off a chunk of the city, and you can understand the whole. Le Café: Begin in a neighborhood café, snuggled alongside a window with a café crème. Chic shoppers whisk by, regulars enter and double kiss on cheeks. The breaddelivery man waddles in; a spectacled professor feeds pieces of croissant to his scruffy wiener dog below. Café life is Parisians-on-pause; take it in. Marché Raspail: Outdoor food markets are living museums for the soul: mounds of mushrooms, piles of pears, coiffed matrons

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bantering back and fourth. Smell the rows of rotisserie chickens turning on the spit. Hear the rich sizzle of the potato pancakes hitting the griddle. This is the day’s overture. (rue du Cherche-Midi & rue de Rennes, Tue., Fri., Sun.)

everything better. With squeaky, varnished floors, the soaring atelier of French painter Eugene Delacroix looks out onto a secret garden. Take in the view. Get lost in the bold brush strokes and rich color of this Romantic painter. C’est extraordinaire. (6, Rue de Furstemberg)

Christian Constant: Pleasure in Paris is chocolate. Order the chocolate and banana Sonia Rykiel tarte, named after the famed French fashion designer. Watch them tie up the package with white paper and satin ribbon; presentation is so much of what Paris is about. (37 Rue d’ Assas)

Walk some more…then head home for a pre-dinner nap.

Luxembourg Garden: Passing under the colonnade of trees is like entering a great cathedral. Turn right, and sit alongside the espaliered apple trees, trained to splay flat like a giant menorah. Some date back to Napoleon’s time and have been holding these poses ever since—pure botanical beauty. Bijoux: Meander the alleyways to Rue Guisarde and the closet-sized “Les 3 Marches de Catherine B”. Brimming with vintage Chanel and Hermes jewelry, it’s like sneaking into the closet of a designer’s muse. I look, but don’t buy; just imagining is enough. (1, rue Guisarde) Cuisine de Bar: All that Chanel makes me hungry. Tight tables, a long banquet: squeeze into the last seat. Here, toasted Poilane bread is heaped with yummy toppings: the perfect lunch. Overhear conversations like dining with chic strangers. (8, rue du Cherche-Midi) Musée Delacroix: Art makes

Wendy Lubovich captures the essence of Paris.

| Spring 2010

Les Editeurs Café: Perch at an open-air window table and watch Paris pass by. An omelet, a glass of Sancerre and moist French bread make an unexpected dinner, but so very French. Finish off with cheese, then a tiny espresso. Luxurious. (4, Carrefour de l’Odeon) Pont Des Arts: Stroll home along the Seine, take in the view from this wooden footbridge. Springtime waters churn, spot-lit bateaux whirl by, Notre Dome sparkles ahead. Snap this postcard in your mind: the city’s greatest masterpiece of all.

Artful Living | Spring 2010 135

Chanel, My Muse What the revolutionary designer taught me. |


hen I was only 6 years old, living on a small, provincial family farm in Iowa, I recall sitting next to my mother in church on the hard oak pews with paper, colored pencils, and a simple paper doll I had made out of cardboard. I traced the doll, then got to work designing dresses for her. What is so remarkable is that I designed “chemise dresses,” in the style of the 1920s, and I have no idea how I ever would have known about such things. My dear mother patiently shepherded my passion, teaching me to sew in the dining room of our dilapidated old farmhouse. By 12, we had moved to “the city,” in Spencer, Iowa, and I was designing and making my own clothes, even turning the wheel by hand with candlelight on one Sunday when an untimely thunderstorm knocked out the power in our home. (I had to wear that dress on Monday with my new white go-go boots to make an impression as the new kid in town.) I followed my heart into the world of fashion, got a degree in Textiles and Clothing and packed up a suitcase full of dreams. In 1980, I opened a small dressmaking salon in Charleston, South Carolina, fashioning the

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white gowns for the debutantes, sewing seed pearls on wedding dresses and tailoring chic boucle suits for the women who lunched at 82 Queen. Then, I discovered the flamboyant Karl Lagerfeld was reviving the House of Chanel in 1983. His first collection was a tribute— quite literally—to the grand dame of fashion 100 years after her birth. Models mimicked photos taken of the young Chanel—the way she held a cigarette, lounged in a chaise and looked impossibly at ease with ropes of pearls and jangling chains around her neck. When I saw his interpretation of the little black dress with the slim hip and low waist, the lace evening gown unadorned except for the pearls, the jaunty small hats and the trim, tailored suits, I shot back to the wooden pews with my paper doll. I was channeling Chanel! She was my muse all along. These were the clothes I loved and drew in the most primitive way. Like an archeologist, I began to dig up everything I could find about Coco Chanel. She was born Gabrielle Chanel on August 19, 1883 (although the records got some of this wrong due to illiterate workers) in a hostel. Her parents were unmarried— an unreliable itinerant father and naïve, sickly mother who died after the birth of


her sixth child. Gabrielle and her two sisters were sent to live with “aunts,” as Chanel referred to them; in fact, they were raised by strict nuns and her past brought her great shame. In defiance of her loss, she acquired a thick skin, courting the arrogance that defended her against the world she was destined to face—the French aristocracy. She and her sister, Antoinette, began as assistants in a respectable hosiery and lingerie shop in Moulins, developing her quick hands and instincts for fit. It was where, at 21, she met her first lover, Etienne Balsan, a wealthy horseman who raced thoroughbreds. Although Balsan may not have swept Chanel off her feet, he invited her to live with him in the provinces. It was a ticket away from her shabby past, even though the price included sharing her lover with other women. It was here that Chanel began to make her mark on the world. Unable to compete with the horse crowd, she ridiculed the women she met at the racecourses. If they wore biascut skirts that swept the ground for riding sidesaddle, she wore riding breeches. If they wore plumed concoctions on their head, she wore a simple straw boater. If they wore lace and ruffles at the neck, she borrowed Balsan’s neckties. Everyone noticed her. At 25 and concerned that another woman

would someday take her place in Balsan’s stable (and probably aware that she had not been able to trust even her own father for stability), she became determined to support herself. But, first, she would meet the love of her life, Arthur (Boy) Capel, who understood her need for work and set her up in business. In the summer of 1913, Capel rented an apartment in Deauville on the fashionable English Channel—one of the first stars to align in her favor. Sportswear was born on the shores of the Atlantic that summer. Chanel began to use jersey for jackets and skirts, a knitted fabric previously used only for underwear. She was seen wearing the turtlenecks favored by the English sailors and jackets from Capel’s own wardrobe, then adopted the English flannels for her own creations. She threw off her corset, dropped her waists and raised the length of her skirts to above her ankles. Chanel was the first to design a bathing dress, however modest it seems today, and toss away her parasol, tanning her face. She cut her hair and introduced bangs. On

weekends, in the company of friends, she was seen in her boyfriend’s bathrobes and pajamas starting the trend for luxurious pajamas for women. Her timing couldn’t have been better. When Europe was plunged into war with men on the front-lines, wealthy women from Paris escaped to Deauville. The mood was Spartan. Women moved among themselves and favored more relaxed clothing. Chanel led that charge. In Paris, where women went to work in the factories and volunteered in the war effort, they began wearing pants, more suitable than skirts to the work. In an effort to conserve fabric, dress styles became narrow and Chanel, again, was credited for championing the chemise. It was featured in Harper’s Bazarre in 1916. The great tragedy and triumph of Chanel’s life is the dialogue between love lost and inspiration found, both in the hands of her lovers. After Capel died in an automobile accident, one story suggests she wanted to put the world in mourning, so she designed the little black dress. Who doesn’t have one

today? The ubiquitous Chanel pearls were a gift from the Duke of Westminster, but when she realized that he was having an affair with another woman, she dropped the priceless strand into the ocean, only to revive the idea as costume jewelry worn en masse. Chanel was more than a couturier. She was a fiercely modern and independent business woman who found herself at the right place (in Paris) at the right time (the first quarter of the 20th century when the word “modern” had new meaning and she could see the potential). She was there in the salons among Picasso, Diaghalev, Stravinsky, Cocteau, Sert, Dali, and Colette charting the future through art, fashion, dance and literature. We cannot count the ways she has touched what hangs in our closets—the flannel trouser, the jeans, the T-shirt—all born of her ability to take the simpler path and, with that, adorn a more interesting woman. She changed how we live and move. Even though my métier is no longer in fashion (I now work as an interior designer and writer), Chanel is still my muse.

paris, august 1948 Coco Chanel, French couturier and a model. FOLLOWING PAGE Harper’s Bazaar Mrs. Carmel Snow LEFT

chatting with Gabrielle Chanel RIGHT, December, 1952.

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“Fashion is not something that exists in dresses only; fashion is something in the air. Fashion is in the sky, in the street, fashion has to do with ideas, the way we live, what is happening." Coco Chanel

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