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fall 2015

SAFAVI EH STYLE AT HOME WITH THOMAS O’BRIEN

At Home With Thomas O’Brien

THE ROMANCE OF RIO

Living With Wine & Spirits

HIGH ABOVE LINCOLN CENTER

mansions of the gold coast

TRENDS IN RUG DESIGN THOM FILICIA GETS REAL MOROCCAN SOJOURN •

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Today’s casual transitional styling blends lighter wood tones, natural textures and relaxed shades of ivory, taupe and gray, with designs that embody a feeling of laid-back sophistication. Oyster Bay offers a casual, comfortable and understated interpretation of luxe living. Designs feature an eclectic mix of traditional elements like button-tufting, breakfront profiles and turned legs with more transitional features such as geometric metal bases, burnished stainless steel tops and natural materials including rusg seats and water hyacinth frames. Pulling the look together is a sophisticated oyster finisg over the graceful lines of quartered mahogany, lightly distressed, with custom hardware in an antique pewter finish. Getting away will always have its place, but nothing feels as good as returning to the comforts of home.

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fall 2015

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Features 42 | The Collector’s Room

At Mill Neck Manor, Safavieh creates a whimsical, clubby retreat for a naturalist and world explorer.

50 | Go With the Flow

Designed with entertaining in mind, this New Jersey home gives revelers the right of way in every room.

56 | High and Mighty

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The couple wanted a pied-à-terre that would be “the opposite” of their bustling country home. An apartment overlooking Lincoln Center fills the bill.

62 | Destination: Morocco

Enchantment awaits with 10 must-do activities throughout Africa’s northern treasure.

68 | Classic Meets Chic

A Gilded Age mansion on Long Island’s Gold Coast is being transformed into a high-style hotel with help from Safavieh.

74 | Chart Topper

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For a record industry executive and his wife, a new home in Connecticut mixes color and pattern in perfect harmony.

80 | Room to Roam

Soaring, light-filled spaces and a cozy sportsman’s den lend variety to this designer show house.

84 | Master of Modern

In the virtuoso interiors of Thomas O’Brien, traditional elements are always used to modern effect.

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fall 2015

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26 departments

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12 | Welcome!

With free interior design, hospitality design and architectural services, Safavieh is branching out. PERSONAL SPACE

16 | Liquid Refreshment

Wine cellars and bars are evolving into relaxed, dedicated spaces for entertaining at home.

21 | Safavieh Showcase

This season’s fashion and furnishings go hand in hand. 21 Lavender

Lilac, plum, violet—shades of purple are a hit on the runway and in the home. 22 gold rush

Sure, it’s opulent. But this precious metal can be playful too. 24 Reflections

Put a modern spin on any space with a touch of glass. 26 Côte d’Azur

From royal to robin’s egg, blue is a classic color that goes contemporary too. 28 Green Scene

RUG TRENDS

34 | From the Painter’s Studio Do look down: That gorgeous Safavieh rug beneath your feet was literally designed by hand.

WINE

105 | Make Mine Madeira

After tasting the wines of Vinhos Barbeito, you’ll be glad you got reacquainted with Port’s native cousin.

110 | Safavieh Happenings

ROOM KEY

94 | Beauty on the Beach

Scenes from the latest celebrations of style with friends, family, designers and industry partners.

Luxury has a Gallic accent at the Cheval Blanc St.-Barth Isle de France.

111 | Where to Find Us

SMALL HOME LIVING

98 | Brooklyn Revolution

When a couple got the chance to renovate an apartment on storied Montague Street, downsizing felt like an upgrade.

A directory of Safavieh’s 11 retail galleries of hom e furnishings and fine rugs in metropolitan New York.

112 | The Last Word

HOW TO…

102 | Create Deeply Personal Spaces

Joe Murphy, head designer for Safavieh, presents eight guideposts for creating rooms where you’ll feel truly at home.

Known for his bravura makeovers, Thom Filicia touts the virtues of simplicity and the element of surprise in interior design.

Mother Nature has long known the lush versatility of this verdant hue. Now you do too. 30 Men’s Club

You might have trouble getting him to leave his “cave” when it’s fitted with these guy-friendly furnishings and accessories.

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STYLE

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AFAVIEH EDITORIAL STAFF

Editorial Director

Editor-in-Chief

Art Director

Style Editor

Creative Director

ASSISTANT ART DIRECTOR

EDITORIAL ASSISTANT

Contributing Editors

Contributing Photographers

CINDY RUBIN MARK DOWDEN ALEXIS puccio Brandon yaraghi STEPHEN VITARBO NATALIE LINDEMAN KARA WILHOUSKI

CAROL BIALKOWSKI RITA GUARNA TIMOTHY KELLEY JOE MURPHY JOSH SENS

it’s time to dream Welcome to the new issue of Safavieh Style, a magazine brimming with inspiration and beauty. This issue reflects Safavieh’s expanding role in the world of interior design. In addition to being a one-stop shop for home furnishings and rugs, Safavieh offers free interior design services, hospitality design and architectural services. In the pages that follow, we take you on a tour of some wonderful interiors created by Safavieh, from a sleek Manhattan apartment that towers above Lincoln Center, to a charming country house hotel, the Glen Cove Mansion, to the perfect home bar and cocktail lounge in a house planned, built and furnished by a team of talented Safavieh designers. You’ll also gain design insights from three of our favorite designers: Thomas O’Brien, the master of “vintage modern” style, shows us his own New York City apartment. Thom Filicia, the makeover genius who rocketed to fame on Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, tells us how to use the element of surprise in decorating. And Joe Murphy, Safavieh’s own head designer, explains how to create deeply personal spaces. If you ever thought that working directly with a high-caliber designer would be difficult or out of reach, we’re here to change your mind. Safavieh has 64 interior designers on staff, and we never charge a design fee. These profession-

als are more than decorators. As true interior designers, they can help you plan space, select wall colors and finishes, find the perfect spots for your heirloom furniture and display your personal artwork. And if you’re building a home, consider bringing in Safavieh from the start. We advise customers on construction, helping to select and source building materials, find subcontractors and more. It’s a holistic process that results in a truly complete custom home. My colleagues and I encourage you to dream and express yourself without boundaries, creating a home that serves as a private sanctuary, a peaceful haven, a showplace for entertaining and whatever else you want it to be. We hope you’ll take us with you on that journey by working with a Safavieh designer. Here’s to a beautiful home! —Michael Yaraghi

LAURA RESEN PETER RYMWID

PUBLISHING STAFF

SHAE MARCUS

Publisher

National Advertising Director

Accounts Manager

Director of Production and Circulation

Advertising Services Manager

JACQUELYNN FISCHER

Senior Art Director, Agency Services

KIJOO KIM

production/art assistant

Manager, Digital Media

CINDY RUBIN DON NGUYEN CHRISTINE HAMEL

Alanna Giannantonio

NIGEL EDELSHAIN

Accounting AMANDA ALBANO AGNES ALVES MEGAN FRANK

Manager, Office Services

Published by

CATHERINE ROSARIO

wwwainscot wainscot

CARROLL V. DOWDEN MARK DOWDEN Senior Vice Presidents SHAE MARCUS CARL OLSEN Vice Presidents RITA GUARNA CHRISTINE HAMEL ADVERTISITNG OFFICE Safavieh Home Furnishings 2 Channel Drive Port Washington, NY 11050 ADVERTISING INQUIRIES Contact Cindy Rubin at 516.945.3911 or cindy.rubin@safavieh.com. SUBSCRIPTION INQUIRIES To change an address or request a subscription, write to Subscriptions, Safavieh Home Furnishings, 2 Channel Drive, Port Washington, NY 11050; telephone 516.945.3868. EDITORIAL INQUIRIES Write to Editor, SAFAVIEH STYLE, 110 Summit Avenue, Montvale, NJ 07645; telephone 201.782.5730; email mark.dowden@wainscotmedia.com. The magazine is not responsible for the return or loss of unsolicited submissions.

Chairman

President

SAFAVIEH STYLE Magazine is published by Wainscot Media, 110 Summit Avenue, Montvale, NJ 07645, in association with Safavieh Home Furnishings. Copyright © 2015 by Wainscot Media, LLC. All rights reserved.

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SA FA V IE H s t y l e

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MADE IN THE USA

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FURNITURE

U P H O L S T E RY

LIGHTING

HOME ACCENTS

t h e o d o re a l e x a n d e r. c o m

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personal space

Interior design, old brookville, by Mary Piselli, with Karin Krinsky for Safavieh Interior design, mill neck, by Karin Krinsky and Joe Murphy for Safavieh photography by Peter Rymwid text by Mark Dowden

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liquid refreshment

Wine cellars and bars are evolving into relaxed, dedicated spaces for entertaining at home.

Most everyone has a way of storing wine at home, whether a few bottles in a humble kitchen rack or a few cases in a refrigerator-like cooler. As wine becomes ever-more entwined in American lifestyles, many sippers have evolved into full-blown oenophiles and collectors, a status that demands more serious and expansive storage. At its most elaborate, the result is a series of subterranean rooms that control temperature, humidity, ventilation, lighting and the likelihood of tainting. Of S A FA V I E H s t y l e

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For all the formality of the arrangement, the setting of this home bar and lounge area feels light and relaxed. Note how the lime-washed woodwork ties with the finish of the flooring and the early 19th-century fire surround, which was salvaged from an earlier home. Safavieh managed the architecture, construction and interior design on this project.

course, the cellar must include a gorgeous (or moody) space in which to hold tastings of one’s collection. Parallel streams in our bibulous culture are the whiskey revolution (led by single malt Scotch, followed by bourbon and rye) and the cocktail renaissance, both of which have been building for two decades and show no signs of peaking. Not surprisingly, these “spiritual revivals” have spawned new interest in home bars and lounges. While the wine enthusiast is preoccupied with storage, the spirits lover is unconcerned with preserving his “liquid investment.” He favors dramatic display of the collection and easy access, allowing him to, well, pour at the drop of a hat. His main design goal is to provide an awesome stage for home entertaining of friends and family. On these pages we visit two Long Island spaces designed and furnished by Safavieh—a wine cellar and tasting room in an Old Brookville home and a bar and lounge in a Mill Neck home. Both spaces are truly cellars, built below grade level, but there is nothing musty or confining about them. Airy, elegant, comfortable and filled with natural light by day, each site is supremely inviting. And each was conceived as its own organic design, visually tied to the rest of the home and free from stereotypes of what a tasting room or bar ought to look like. These rooms reflect their settings and their owners’ confident tastes. Lucky are the guests who get to raise a glass in either home.

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lavender

safavieh showcase

Sleek and slender, the Wilhemina table lamp by Arteriors adds a chic vibe to a living room or bedroom.

From Safavieh’s Tibetan collection, this wool rug was inspired by a Renaissance damask fabric, and the result is pure romance.

Abstract stripes distinguish this silk throw pillow by Aviva Stanoff—perfect for adding a pop of purple to a sofa or chair.

Lilac, plum, violet—shades of purple are a hit on the runway and in the home. See how this fall’s fashions and furnishings go hand in hand.

Rest your feet on Safavieh’s globally inspired Grant ottoman with Moorish arch cutouts outlined in handsome silver nail heads. It’s equally good looking alone or in pairs.

This handmade glass sculpture by Arteriors has been mounted on a crystal base, creating a great conversation starter.

Kent Walsh’s original abstract painting is presented here by John-Richard as a giclee on canvas. It floats in a deep, narrow frame with a purple and soft silver finish.

A deeply tufted back and seat define this classic sofa by Baker. The rich plum color places it squarely in the contemporary category.

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gold rush

safavieh showcase

Large brass drawer pulls in the shape of a flower characterize this cherry chest by Kindel designed by Dorothy Draper.

The Payne chandelier by Arteriors uses hand-cut, hand-scored iron in repeated bands to form a complex, compelling shape.

From Friedman Brothers’ Milano collection: a stunning mirror featuring an ornately carved frame finished in gold leaf.

It’s unique. It’s fun. It’s the Stellina end table by Safavieh Couture, a circular sensation fashioned from glass and gold-plated brushed stainless steel.

Sure, it’s opulent. But this precious metal can be playful too. Your room will take on an exuberant shine with this Hancock & Moore statement chair featuring a metallic finish and nailhead trim.

Gold goes hip with these Punk Skull pillows by Safavieh sporting cotton sateen covers and sparkling sequins.

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The Bashi table lamp by Safavieh features lush branching coral (really it’s molded resin) in a gold tone finish.

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reflections

safavieh showcase Your home will surely shine with this striking 12-light chandelier finished in polished nickel by Arteriors.

Dramatic yet delicate, the 44-inch-wide Blossom mirror by Baker was loosely inspired by a kimono printed with cherry blossoms.

The wild west meets the big city in Safavieh Couture’s antler-adorned Jackson cocktail table.

Reminiscent of the iconic Le Corbusier lounge chair, the Nampa Chaise by Safavieh Couture appears to float on its champagne stainless steel base.

Mirror, mirror on the wall... the ceiling, the floor. Put a modern spin on any space with a touch of glass.

With its silver leaf and mirror finish, the chic Madolyn églomisé console by Safavieh Couture pays homage to the decorative craftsmanship of Versailles. Use it in any space in need of instant luxury.

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This Vanguard chest not only adds extra storage but also style with its allover mirror finish and brushed nickel trim.

S SA A FA FAV V II E EH H ssttyyllee

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côte d’azur

safavieh showcase

Confident, feminine, Italian—her name is Isabella. This classically inspired mirror by Friedman Brothers will enliven any space.

Inspired by traditional Fair Isle knits from Scotland, the Ralph Lauren Sheldon rug adds a vintage feel to any room. The distinct aged appearance is created by washing the wool before and after weaving.

Shimmering polyester accent pillows by Safavieh mimic the elegance of silk and are covered in a rich folkloric pattern.

From royal to robin’s egg, blue is a classic color that goes contemporary too.

A transitional piece that works in both casual and formal design schemes, this terracotta table lamp features a scalloped texture and baby blue finish.

For the discerning hostess: the Keanu tray from Safavieh Couture, which is fashioned from a resin that painstakingly recreates the texture of stingray skin.

Safavieh Couture’s Sabine chair is fit for royalty. Based on the design of chairs used in sentry boxes outside the main entrances of 17th-century French palaces, it’s crafted of white-washed oak with a blue linen cover.

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This cobalt chest by Kindel is not for the color-shy. It’s an ideal accent piece for a den or family room.

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green scene

safavieh showcase

Mother Nature has long known the lush versatility of this verdant hue. Now you do too.

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With its clear acrylic legs, the tufted Abrosia bench by Safavieh appears to float! Upholstered in lustrous velvet, it adds a touch of Hollywood glamour to a home.

Slim and feminine in design, this armless accent chair by Harden brings a modern flair to a bedroom or living room.

Adorned with the celebrated Chinese guardian lion, this barrelshaped stool by Safavieh can be used for extra seating, a side table or a perch for a plant.

This contemporary wool rug from Safavieh’s Soho collection makes a dramatic statement with its large-scale starburst pattern in multiple shades of green.

A sofa like this one by Theodore Alexander you sink into, not just sit on. The subtle sheen and contrasting black pillows give it a contemporary feel.

Like a mermaid with shimmering green scales, this playful pillow by Aviva Stanoff is the ideal accent for a modern sofa or chair.

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Š2015 California Closet Company, Inc. All rights reserved. Each franchise independently owned and operated.

for the love of home

MANHASSET 981 Northern Blvd.

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men’s club

safavieh showcase

With its neutral tones, this natural cowhide rug by Safavieh is likely to complement furnishings you already own.

Maitland Smith makes every gamer’s dream come true with an elegant foosball table featuring monkeys and lions as the players.

You might have trouble getting him to leave his “cave” when it’s fitted with these guy-friendly furnishings and accessories.

Upholstered in hair-on-hide and cigar brown leather, Safavieh Couture’s curvaceous Fullham arm chair is striking from any angle.

Go back in time with Theodore Alexander’s brass magnifying glass with quill handle on its own leather inlaid stand.

The perfect perch for drinks beside a comfortable club chair: the Xylia side table by Safavieh Couture, featuring a 24-inch glass top supported by a trio of horn-shaped resin legs.

Rich Bordeaux leather upholstery, button tufting and brass nailhead trim define the classic Westminster Chesterfield sofa by Safavieh Couture. Its intricately carved birch wood frame in an espresso finish exudes old-world authenticity.

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SAFAVIEH s t y l e

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ADAPTS TO ANY ENVIRONMENT BUT PREFERS ONE WITH A VIEW

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rug trends

From the

Painter’s Studio

Do look down: That gorgeous Safavieh rug beneath your feet was literally designed by hand.

Katalin Laszlo (above left) and Alicia Maher pose in the studio where they design rugs for Safavieh. The Constellation rug (right) was designed in collaboration with Kevin Yaraghi, one of the younger generation of the family that owns and operates Safavieh.

As the world’s leading producer of designer rugs— ranging from hand-knotted, to hand-tufted, to power loomed—Safavieh takes great care to be at the forefront of rug design. The company’s design team is led by two talented, senior artists, Alicia Maher and Katalin Laszlo, whose studio is housed in the Safavieh headquarters building in Port Washington, New York. “People are surprised to learn that almost all of our rug designs begin with a hand rendering rather than a computer,” says Maher. “We like to begin by painting a design, and the medium

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we like to work in most is watercolor.” For a watercolor painting that might be destined to become a rug, the next step is to scan the original artwork, bring it into a software design program, and build out the details digitally. In the case of a crisp geometric design, the loose lines of the painting will be tightened up. “For a more painterly design,” explains Maher, “we’ll preserve some of the looseness of the watercolor in the digital rendering.” That’s especially evident, for example, in Safavieh’s Dip Dye Collection, which is meant to evoke the soft lines of a painting. What inspires their rug designs? “So many things!” says Laszlo. “Nature, architecture, textiles…” (Both

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Modern rugs for modern tastes (opposite, clockwise from top left): one of the cosmically gorgeous Constellation rugs designed in collaboration with Kevin Yaraghi; a leafy organic design from the Porcello Collection that began as a watercolor painting; a fashion-inspired rug that also began as a painting, created in collaboration with Jacqueline Yaraghi; a painterly floral rug from the Dip Dye Collection. Above, this contemporary rug with a layered pattern was inspired by an antique Persian rug from Safavieh’s collection.

Laszlo and Maher studied textile design at the Fashion Institute of Technology.) “Museum exhibits, such as last year’s Matisse exhibit at the Museum of Modern Art,” she continues. “Fashion trends are also a big inspiration. …” These trends can be translated into rugs quite quickly. Arash and Cyrus Yaraghi, two of the five brothers who own and operate Safavieh, are now in the habit of emailing inspirational photographs snapped during their world travels, Maher reports. “And recently the younger generation of the family has begun doing the same thing. I can be painting a design just hours after one of the family spots a trend in Europe or Asia. It’s very gratifying to be able to collaborate with the owners in this way.” Says Arash Yaraghi, “We’re always designing with our customers in mind. They have worldly tastes and are fashion conscious, so it’s natural that fashion is a big influence for us.” Historical designs are also an inspiration. Laszlo and Maher have at their disposal Safavieh’s vast archive of antique rugs. They have various ways of simplifying classic designs for modern tastes. Laszlo elaborates: “We strip out details to make the designs less busy. We reduce the number of colors to two or three at most. We may blow up a design detail very large, to treat it in a modern way. And we can use color to make areas of a rug look worn, softening the overall look and creating a sense of patina.” What happens after a hand-rendered design has been fully digi-

tized? First there’s an internal review process to decide which designs progress to the sample stage. If a design is a candidate for production, it’s turned into a rug sample approximately 2x3-feet in size. “Nothing is more exciting than when a sample arrives,” says Maher. “We check the colors, the faithfulness to our artwork and an overall impression of quality.” “It’s fascinating,” adds Laszlo, “because the materials, the weave, the method of manufacturing—all of these things affect how the artwork translates into a rug. The artwork is two dimensional, but the rug, of course, is three dimensional. It has texture, and that can add to the overall effect of the design.” The duo may tweak the colors and design based on the first sample. Next comes a full-scale sample, say, 6x9-feet in size. In the case of a hand-knotted rug, this can take nine months to produce. Power-loomed designs, by contrast, have a much quicker turnaround. Once more, the designers will have an opportunity to tweak the color and pattern before the rug is authorized for production. Laszlo and Maher liken their job to fashion designers, and it seems a perfectly apt comparison. They find inspiration in a world of beauty all around them. They paint what inspires them: Designs go from head to hand to paper very quickly. They create multiple collections in the course of a year. And best of all, they get the satisfaction of seeing their inspirations turned into woven realities—in this case, rugs—that inspire the lives of other people. S A FA V I E H s t y l e

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WEAVING WORKS OF ART FOR 100 YEARS Safavieh Celebrates 100 Years of Style with the Centennial Collection; created using the finest silk and wool, these hand-knotted rugs celebrate the rich traditions of the ancient art of rug making. Timeless beauty, fashion-forward designs, and exquisitely lustrous tones. www.safavieh.com • 877.919.1010

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Made in America…since 1844 Harden Furniture, Inc. 8550 Mill Pond Way, McConnellsville, NY 13401-1844 (315) 245-1000 • Fax (315) 245-2884 harden@harden.com • www.harden.com

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room

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In the mythical world of the show house, designers can be as quirky as their hearts desire. Interior design by Joe Murphy, Keith Murphy and Karin Krinsky for Safavieh Photography by Peter Rymwid Text by Timothy Kelley

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Show houses offer a chance for Safavieh’s staff designers to flex their creativity, and sometimes the results can be whimsical. “You’re referring to the stuffed antelopes,” nods Joe Murphy, Safavieh’s head designer, surveying the room at the Mill Neck Manor, a Tudor Revival mansion on 86 acres overlooking Long Island Sound. “It’s true we don’t sell mounted animal heads. But the story we were creating seemed to cry out for taxidermy, so off we went to the taxidermist.” The trip was actually to a favorite local antiques dealer, who happens to carry a lot of exotic animal mounts. Murphy admits getting carried away with accessories. On a huge library table, an eel fork, which looks like Neptune’s trident, rests atop a gigantic book of hours illuminated by monks in the 14th century. Next to it are fossilized dinosaur eggs and a contraption that looks like a lie detector. “I’m not sure what that machine is for,” says Murphy, “but I like that it seems a little sinister.” continued

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The Collector’s Room was conceived as the refuge of an explorer, naturalist and collector. Given a thoroughly traditional backdrop—the oak paneling, salvaged from Tattershall Castle, dates from the Wars of the Roses—the design team from Safavieh made the room come alive with a mixture of contemporary and classic furnishings. The room is part of Mill Neck Manor (above left), a Tudor Revival mansion on Long Island’s North Shore.

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A bold mix of primitive sculpture and natural objects help give the Collector’s Room its exotic flavor. With its faux horn frame and hair-onhide upholstery, a cast resin armchair, below left, echoes the dÊcor on the walls. The purple tufted sofa punctuates an otherwise neutral palette, beckoning the visitor to sit and unwind.

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“We dubbed this the Collector’s Room,” continues designer Karin Krinsky. “It’s inspired by the Vanderbilt estate in Centerport, New York. We wanted the feeling of entering an old museum.” Along with a cabinet of curiosities and the antiques-strewn table, the room contains many bold, fun pieces that are in fact sold by Safavieh, such as an enormous framed print of a zebra, faux fur throws, and layers of hand-knotted rugs from Morocco and elsewhere. Says Krinsky, “This was our most challenging show house ever because we couldn’t change the finish on the walls, floors or ceiling.” Understandable, as the walls, for instance, are clad in oak paneling salvaged from Tattershall Castle, home of Ralph de Cromwell, Lord Treasurer of England during the reign of Henry VI. “We couldn’t go painting over that!” Adjacent to the Collector’s Room is a verandah, furnished by Safavieh in collaboration with The Enchanted Home. With its wicker furniture, monogrammed linens and Chinese porcelain, this feminine space is the antithesis of the antiquarian’s lair. Indoors, one expects to see Gomez Addams come around the corner at any moment. Outdoors, it’s not Morticia but Mrs. Astor who could be conjured forth. The two spaces together seem to prove the adage that opposites attract.

A latter-day Gomez Addams would feel in his element in the study area of the Collector’s Room (left), where the look is casual, transitional and decidedly masculine. On the adjacent verandah, however, the décor shifts to garden-party feminine and formal.

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go with the

flow In a home designed for parties, revelers have the right of way in every room.

Interior design by

Kosh Palmer for Safavieh Photography by Peter Rymwid Text by Rita Guarna

In the living room of this home designed for entertaining, the highly figured, book-matched marble on the fireplace wall is a true conversation piece.

Couples that entertain regularly at home develop their own rhythms and routines. Some are lucky enough to build a house from the ground up, where both the architecture and the furnishings can be planned to a T to reflect the couple’s personal party style. That was the case with this Livingston, New Jersey house, a place for entertaining that’s all about flow—from room to room, from indoors to outdoors and back again. “The spaces are not enormous,” notes interior designer

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The cabana functions as a perfect, fully furnished outdoor room, complete with beer tap and bar. The physical hub of the house is the dining room (right). A shimmering, strongly vertical space, it’s dominated by a sculptural Italian chandelier.

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Kosh Palmer. “Each seating area is set up to feel quite cozy and intimate. And yet the rooms have a very open feel, and the house can handle a very large party.” Consider the dining room, which is taller than it is wide. While a formal dining room is an afterthought in many of today’s houses, here it’s the physical hub of the home, connected to the indoor and outdoor kitchens, the entrance hall and the living room. A circular table ensures that up to 12 diners can converse comfortably. The two-story space has the enchanted air of a planetarium, thanks in large measure to a sculptural Italian light fixture of glowing glass pendants. Another sculptural detail anchors the living room: The fireplace wall is made from two highly figured, book-matched marble slabs. Looking like a cross between an Expressionist painting and a Rorschach test, the marble wall is a conversation starter. Adjacent to the living room is a billiard area with a large bar and banquette seating for pool players and spectators. The

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Curving, shimmery and aglow with soft light, the dining room is an ideal setting for a cozy dinner party.

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leather-upholstered banquette is fronted by a series of small pedestal tables, each supported by a male or female bronze nude in the attenuated style of Giacometti. The look is clubby, elegant and a little bit sexy. The billiard area flows into an outdoor cabana with its own fireplace as a focal point. With a low-slung modular sofa and high vaulted ceiling, this room without walls feels relaxed, spacious and Banquette seating in the billiard area makes light. “It’s perfect for entertaining three partiers comfortable without impeding the flow of seasons out of four,” says Palmer. “And if traffic—or risking a poke from a pool cue. Less is the weather turns too chilly, a warm bar more in this open space, with its pleasing vista to and billiards are steps away.” the uncluttered living room.

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high and Mighty Towering above Lincoln Center, this Deco-inspired pied-à-terre is all about the views. Ron Marshall of Ronald P. Marshall Inc., with Judy Sullivan for Safavieh Photography by Peter Rymwid Text by Rita Guarna Interior design by

At a lofty 50 floors above the streets of Manhattan, you could call it the ultimate pied-à-terre. The French term literally means “foot on the ground,” but here the residents sometimes have their heads quite literally in the clouds. Not surprisingly, the views were a big part of the attraction to this apartment, says designer Ron Marshall. So was the brand-newness of the luxury high-rise building. “My client’s main home is on the water in Connecti-

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cut,” he explains. “The house is quite grand, and it’s bustling with three generations of family life. For their city retreat, the couple wanted the opposite—modern, open, quiet, new and easy.” Marshall took care of “easy” with breathtaking efficiency. Giving himself a mere month to create a home from scratch, he went shopping at Safavieh’s Stamford, Connecticut, store and chose all of the furnishings from available stock. This strategy enabled a lightningfast move-in: “The owner picked up the keys at 8 A.M. Wednesday,” Marshall recalls, “and at 9 A.M., the Safavieh delivery trucked rolled up to the service entrance.” When the couple returned 48 hours later, everything was in place:

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Designer Ron Marshall kept the furniture low, light—and in the case of an iconic Knoll chair and waterfall console, see-through—so as not to compete with the sweeping views. He treated the dining area as a simple lounge, with armchairs and a drinks table, again allowing the view to take center stage.

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AV and sound systems connected, art on the walls, towels on their bathroom racks, food in the pantry, books on the shelves and coffee tables…perfectly orchestrated by Marshall with help from Safavieh. For all the speed of the installation, nothing was sacrificed on the aesthetic side. Marshall’s Art Deco-inflected setting is sophisticated and visually “quiet,” so as not to compete with the sweeping views through 14-foot-high windows. The perch is so high that the couple can actually see the Connecticut shore in the distance, but here they feel truly a world apart. Design mission accomplished.

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In the master bedroom, where the ceiling approaches 14 feet, designer Ron Marshall accentuated the sense of height by keeping the furniture low, the walls uncluttered and the palette mostly white. The room overlooks the Hudson River and the entire breadth of New Jersey.

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crestaire a collection by Stanley Furniture www.stanleyfurniture.com

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Morocco DESTINATION:

10 can’t-miss adventures

Enchantment awaits with these must-do activities throughout Africa’s northern treasure. It’s little wonder the name Morocco comes from the Berber word for “Land of God.” From the Sahara’s golden dunes to the high peaks of the Atlas Mountains, this North African country’s magnificent beauty and exotic culture—a blend of Berber, European and Arab influences—seem touched by the divine. Morocco is a bit bigger than California, so visiting its high spots requires several hours’ travel. Fortunately, trains here are efficient, comfortable and cheap. For a Moroccan vacation you’ll never forget, squeeze in as many of these 10 experiences as you possibly can: continued

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When dusk falls on Marrakech, Djemma el-Fna—the city’s large center square and marketplace— transforms into a magical world of storytellers, musicians, dancers and jugglers.

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This page, clockwise from top, the ancient seaside city of Essaouira, a per fect place to hit the beach; a traditional vegetable tagine, named for the special earthenware pot in which it is cooked; the Roman ruins of Volubilis; mounds of honeycoated sweets to be eaten at the end of Ramadan. Opposite, from left, the ornate Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca, the largest mosque in the country; a ceramic artist at work in Fez, a center of fine pottery production for thousands of years.

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Browse the markets. Herbal potions, colorful fabrics, pungent spices—you’ll find them all and more in the country’s souks, or urban markets. Though these bazaars are found in many Moroccan cities, the most expansive ones are in the northern city of Fez, and Marrakech in the southwest. You’ll find narrow, winding streets and alleys lined with vendors—set up much as they were in centuries past. A few tips for your shopping excursion: Don’t be shy about bargaining with the vendors, beware of pickpockets and make sure you have plenty of dirham, Morocco’s official currency.

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View the Roman ruins of Volubilis. Once ruled by the great Roman Empire, Morocco contains some impressive Roman ruins from the 2nd and 3rd centuries in Volubilis, an ancient city-turned-archaeological site that’s an easy trip from Meknes. The spot is open to visitors from morning to sunset for a fee of about 20 dirham ($5.45).

While Morocco as a whole may evoke images of ancient, exotic cultures, Casablanca the beach. With coastlines on its most often calls to mind 5Hit northern and western sides, Morocco features a host of beautiful beaches. On the 1940s Hollywood. Atlantic coast, check out the ancient seaside

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Climb the Atlas Mountains. Hardy travelers should pack comfy walking shoes to ascend this range, which winds through Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia. The main trekking season runs from April, when the mountain snow begins to melt, until October. Those in good physical condition might try reaching Jbel Toubkal, North Africa’s highest point at about 13,670 feet. The hike is challenging, but the spectacular views of the surrounding mountains and the vast Sahara beyond are well worth the effort.

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a lavish creation of the Saadian dynasty built in the 16th century, and the Bahia Palace from the late 19th century. In the northern town of Meknes, visit Dar Jamai, a former private residence that is now part of Dar Jamai Museum, exhibiting local arts. Channel your own royal roots by lodging in one of Morocco’s riads, palaces converted into charming hotels in the historic centers of major cities.

Tour the palaces. To explore Morocco’s imperial past, stop by some of its grand palaces. In Marrakech, check out the El Badi Palace,

town of Essaouira. Inhabited since prehistoric times, its powerful trade winds now make it a famous windsurfing spot. Asilah is also a must-see on the western shore, with sandy beaches, whitewashed houses and a lively festival held each August. If you’re heading north, check out the picturesque sands of Tangier, a seaside town on the Strait of Gibraltar. continued

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There’s no better way to see the Sahara’s dunes than on camelback.

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Visit Casablanca’s modern mosque. While Morocco as a whole may evoke images of ancient, exotic cultures, Casablanca most often calls to mind 1940s Hollywood. But this historic locale is actually a vibrant, modern city that boasts the country’s largest mosque. Opened in the early 1990s to commemorate the 60th birthday of a former king, the Hassan II Mosque overlooks the Atlantic Ocean and can hold some 25,000 worshippers—plus another 80,000 in its courtyard. The structure features a retractable roof, a 689-foot minaret that shines a laser beam toward Mecca at night and a vastly ornate prayer hall adorned with woodcarving, tile work and stucco molding.

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Experience the Djemma el-Fna at night. When dusk falls on Marrakech, Djemma el-Fna—the city’s large center square—transforms into a fantastical world of acrobats, dancers, storytellers, musicians and jugglers. When hunger strikes, grab a meal at one of the outdoor food stalls or enjoy a relaxing repast in one of the cafés overlooking the hustle and bustle.

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way to see the Sahara’s dunes than on camelback. You can arrange your trek with various tour companies located in cities bordering the desert, including Merzouga, M’Hamid and Zagora. Beginners are advised to try a day trip first (long journeys can leave you tired and sore); adventurers might opt for a two or three-day excursion.

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Try Moroccan mint tea. Amble the streets long enough and you’ll undoubtedly be offered this trademark brew—especially by shop owners hoping you’ll stop to browse their wares. Mint tea is Morocco’s national drink, and it’s regarded as a way to welcome visitors and relax with family and friends. Served in small crystal tumblers that resemble shot glasses, the tea has earned the nickname “Moroccan whiskey.”

Mint tea is Morocco’s national drink, and it’s regarded as a way to welcome visitors the kasbahs. Drive through the and relax with family 10Rock Dades Valley (between the High Atlas Mountains and the Jebel Sahro mountain range) and friends.

Ride a camel. While trains and taxis might be the best mode of transportation to most of Morocco’s attractions, there’s no better

to behold breathtaking views of lush oasis towns and red cliffs lined with kasbahs—ancient North African forts. Indeed, the sheer multitude of these structures makes it clear why the area is known as “The Valley of One Thousand Kasbahs.” For an authentic experience, try lodging in one of the many kasbahs that have been converted into hotels.

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classic meets

chic

A Gilded Age mansion is being transformed into a highstyle hotel with help from Safavieh.

Karin Krinsky and Madelyn Lizzio for Safavieh Photography by Peter Rymwid Text by Carol Bialkowski Interior design by

Glen Cove Mansion is a rarity on Long Island’s Gold Coast—an intact home of the Gilded Age that has been given new life as a resort hotel and conference center. With the help of Safavieh, the interiors are now being refurbished and refurnished in up-to-date 21st century style. Built in 1910, the Georgian-style home on 55 acres was called “one of the best 12 country houses in America” by Country Life magazine. Its owners were John and Ruth Pratt. He was an executive with Standard Oil; she became New York’s first Republican Congresswoman, representing the city’s “Silk Stocking” district. Ruth and her family maintained the home until her death in 1965, allowing various classic films of the 1950s, such as Hitchcock’s North by Northwest, to be filmed, in part, on the grounds. What strikes today’s visitor on arrival is, first of all, what a century of good care will do for trees. The grounds boast superb, massive specimens of ginko, European beech, red oak and other The sitting room of this hotel suite in the Glen Cove Mansion was conceived as an ideal space where a bride—or her mother—could prepare for a wedding. In the original parts of the mansion (above), Safavieh will preserve architectural details while bringing the décor and furnishings up to date.

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A century ago, John and Ruth Pratt’s mansion in Glen Cove was regarded as one of the 12 best country houses in America. The neo-Georgian façade of the 1910 house (below) masks additions from later decades and preserves a sense of bygone grandeur. At the lushly landscaped swimming pool (right), crepe myrtles flourish far north of their normal growing zone.

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cies. Next comes the house. Its brick-andlimestone façade, the work of noted architect Charles Adams Platt, has been sensitively preserved, masking from view the later additions of hotel wings, a dining room that seats 300, a fitness center with racquet sports, and conference facilities that wind through gardens at the rear of the property. Most of the hotel rooms are contemporary, and Safavieh is furnishing them with the architecture in mind. Clean lines, luxurious upholstery and bedding, and a calm palette are the orders of the day. “We were asked to create the perfect environment for a good night’s rest,” says designer Madeline Lizzio. “We’re doing that and more. Our goal is for guests

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From the Connaught in London to the Delano in Miami, the fusion of old and new styles is a major design trend in the hotel world. The Glen Cove Mansion is receiving the same thoughtful treatment. A serene hotel bedroom furnished by Safavieh (above) all but guarantees a restful night’s sleep. In the lobby area of the Glen Cove Mansion (right), the classic architecture will remain as outdated floors, window treatments and furnishings are made chic and modern.

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to feel stress ebb away as soon as they pass through the doorway.” The modern rooms offer a pleasing contrast to the traditional original interiors of the mansion. Here the renovation master plan calls for preserving architectural details and complementing them with chic new furnishings. “The fusion of old and new styles is a major trend in the hotel world,” notes designer Karen Krinsky. “It’s been wildly successful in some of the greatest old European hotels, such as the Connaught in London, and in classic American hotels such as the Delano in Miami. The good bones here at the Glen Cove Mansion deserve the same thoughtful design treatment.”

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chart topper For a record industry executive and his wife, a new home in Connecticut mixes color and pattern in perfect harmony.

Although the music industry long ago went digital, the title of record producer has lingered in the public imagination. Indeed, singles and albums that go “gold” or “platinum” are still commemorated with award plaques that showcase metal-plated vinyl records. When a successful record industry executive and his wife downsized their home in Ridgefield, Connecticut, they tapped Margaret Farrell and Patricia

Margaret Farrell and Patricia Hessel of THT Interiors, with Margaret McSharry for Safavieh Photography by Peter Rymwid Text by Rita Guarna Interior design by

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In the master bedroom (above), a palette of whites, greys and faint blues creates an aura of calm. An upstairs alcove (right) now does double-duty as the wife’s office and pretty sitting room. The husband’s office (previous spread) boasts masculine, Machine Age chic, thanks in large measure to the “riveted” wall covering. Gold and platinum records, souvenirs of a career in the music business, adorn the walls.

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Hessel of THT Interiors to handle the interior design of the new house. The duo made the owner’s gold and platinum records a featured part of the décor. It’s a tribute to their skill that the records function as artwork and not a commercial wall of fame. The home office where the records hang is a refined, quietly handsome space, with nary a whiff of memorabilia shop, music café or sports bar. This room tells you that its owner is indeed the man and not a mere fan. Elsewhere in the home, a light spirit prevails in the décor. “The previous house had a large formal living room and family room,” notes Farrell. “The new house is smaller, with an open floor plan. Our challenge was to maintain the sophistication level while combining two rooms, including the client’s art collection, into a single space. It was important to keep things airy and not over-furnish.” Upstairs, the designers’ brief was to make the master bedroom tranquil, comfortable and lush. To help banish clutter, a small bedroom was transformed into an all-in-one closet, dressing room and home theatre. An alcove became the wife’s

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The living room was designed to showcase the owners’ collection of paintings and objets d’art. Here the designers effortlessly mingle two centuries of style, ranging from a Regency hall table to a unique upholstered coffee table with an inset mirrored top.

office; it doubles as a sitting room where she can entertain a small group of friends. There is no over-the-top opulence in the interior design or architecture of this home, which was furnished by Safavieh. “The owners weren’t looking for us to pump up the volume,” says Farrell. Rather, each room speaks subtly of luxury.

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room to Soaring, lightfilled spaces and a cozy den lend variety to a designer show house.

roam

Interior design by Mark A. Polo of Polo M.A. (living room) and Judy Schwartz Interiors (den), with Sheila Broderson for Safavieh Photography by Peter Rymwid Text by Carol Bialkowski

It’s an understatement to say that designing and furnishing show houses is a lot of work. The designer Mark A. Polo muses, “When I am in the midst of putting together a room in a designer show house in Saddle River, New Jersey, I have continually pondered: ‘Why do I put myself and my craftsmen through this torture?’” He offers several answers in defense of self-torture. One is camaraderie: “The chance to work alongside other professionals who are at the top of their game is invigorating, fun and challenging.” Another reason is to give back to society, as every show house exists to

Designer Mark A. Polo achieves a pleasing fusion of styles in this living room, where he blends transitional furniture, antiques and idiosyncratic artwork for a very contemporary effect.

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raise money for a charitable cause. There is a creative angle, of course: “I try things and combinations that I have not tested in the field, and it gives me a platform to look at the creative process freely without constraints.” There’s always the chance to show potential clients what the designer can do with a space that he was randomly assigned. And finally, Polo cites the thrill of providing a real-time design experience: “Visitors to the show house are absorbing the atmosphere, feeling the shapes and colors. They feel the textures and the continual elemental tension created by the groupings that they see. It’s impossible to get the same response from a photo in a magazine.” That may be, but the rooms you see here, which were designed for the Designer Showhouse of New Jersey, are still fairly ravishing in only two dimensions. The living room, created by Polo and furnished by Safavieh, is a glamorous space that combines Old World elements, Asian art forms and a vintage Hollywood sheen. By contrast, the basement billiard room, designed by Judy Schwartz Interiors and furnished by Safavieh, is a relaxed and witty den that pays tribute to the fictional owner’s love of skiing. Created to shine brightly for a few weeks and then be disassembled— the fate of most show houses—these rooms could easily have stood the test of time, providing a real owner with years of pleasurable living. “What a shame it’s only temporary!” a visitor will be heard to say. For designers like Mark Polo, such reactions are a measure of success.

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In a retreat on the lower level, Judy Schwartz creates a witty vision of the sporting life, with paintings of ski trails, equestrian images, stylized antlers and a brushed metal pool table. In Mark Polo’s living room (right), the highly symmetrical arrangement includes Chinese porcelains and oval sculptures in the manner of Henry Moore. The repetitive use of polished surfaces lends a sense of old Hollywood glamour.

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e rn In the virtuoso interiors of Thomas O’Brien, traditional elements are always used to modern effect. Thomas O’Brien Laura Resen Text by Mark Dowden Interior design by Photography by

No one has stretched the concept of “modern” in interior design as much as Thomas O’Brien. In the city and country homes of his design, he has proven that modern style is a matter of subtlety, refinement and range. Modern can be casual, formal, urban, elegant, traditional. In fact, in O’Brien’s understanding, modern and traditional are inextricably linked. He shows us that a modern space can be created using entirely traditional elements, and the effect can be wholly contemporary. This is not a conjurer’s trick, but a real alchemy that grows from his training in historical styles, a superb eye for scale and form, and a belief in the power of reduction. As O’Brien writes, “All things become more modern when they are abbreviated.” On these pages, we glimpse inside two very different O’Brien creations—a Fifth Avenue apartment for a longtime client and his own New York apartment. The first one may be termed formal modern, the second, vintage modern. The stretch of Fifth Avenue across from the Metropolitan Museum of Art is an impossibly good location, and this particular apartment— a floor-through residence in a prewar building, untouched by renovation since mid-century—was, In the living room of a renovated Fifth Avenue apartment, Thomas O’Brien uses pairs of furniture and mirrors other elements—from lamps to framed artwork—to achieve a formal setting in cool, soft grey. The rug is one of his designs for Safavieh, here woven in a custom size.

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in O’Brien’s word, “magical.” His renovation uncovered and preserved as much of the original architecture as possible. He then had the luxury of customizing the upholstery and custom building major pieces of furniture, so that everything fit together in perfect balance. In typical O’Brien fashion, there is a yin-yang contrast to some of the rooms. The living room, facing Central Park and bathed in natural light, is delicate in tone and arranged as a strongly symmetrical, highly fitted setting. The adjacent dining room, with an eastern exposure, is cloaked in a full-gloss, chemise grey paint, which takes on a smoky quality as the daylight dies. It’s a perfect party room, with various dining areas instead of one large table. A corner banquette is reminiscent of old New York restaurants. The center table, designed by O’Brien in the Regency style, inspired a similar table in his new The dining room can seat two to 28 people in clubby New York style. A corner banquette, fitted with its own table, is preferred seating for small parties. In place of a sideboard, a Georgian serving table helps pull the space toward the modern. This room is perhaps at its best in the evening, when the full-gloss paint casts a seductive glow.

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collection for Century Furniture. All told, this club room, as he calls it, can host as many as 28 diners. O’Brien’s own apartment is a very different environment, a studio evocative of Bauhaus artists and 1920s Paris. As he explains it, the space is about inspiration, collecting, living with art—“and saying no to finality.” Some years ago, he moved his bed into the living space—the better to let his collections flood in around him— and turned the bedroom into a den and dressing room. “It began in a very spare way,” he relates. “But now the art climbs the walls. We spent days planning how to hang the art—figuring out the spacing and the juxtapositions.” Despite, or perhaps because of,

favorite things

Thomas O’Brien shares his preferences. SAF.fw15.ThomasO'Brien8.indd 88

What can’t you live without? Dogs. I got my first dog when I was 1 year old. I have a cairn terrier and a Maltese, plus two cats. Favorite artist? The photographer Irving Penn. Favorite building? The Academy, my country house. I also have to mention the Metropolitan Museum of Art. And my favorite room in the world? The Venetian bedroom at the Met.

In the demure and romantic bedroom, O’Brien upholstered the bed and the walls in the same pale Fortuny fabric. To tie the library (opposite) to the rest of the home, he used a light ivory finish. The contrasting eggplant interior of the bookcases, a stroke of inspiration, adds richness to the colored book bindings. The 19th-century Tabriz rug is from Safavieh’s collection.

Favorite travel destination? London. What do you always pack when you travel? A necktie. Even if I’m just going to the Century factory overnight, I pack a tie, hoping I can wear it to dinner. I want to live in a world less casual. What scent do you wear? Trafalgar by Truefitt & Hill.

Guilty pleasure? Trees. I love to garden, and I’ve become obsessed with trees! We found a local grower that collects and specializes in rare ones. My latest acquisition is an incredible variegated-leaf oak. What are you reading? Cookbooks, among other things. I cook a lot, and I’m fascinated by cookbooks from the ’60s, ’70s and ’80s. A lot of craft went into them.

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this careful consideration, the effect is organic and casual—that is to say, modern. The works of art themselves are a fascinating combination of “the fine and the normal,” which is yet another modern notion, here perfectly realized.

In O’Brien’s studio space on 57th Street, which is also his city home, the display of vintage items is constantly evolving. On the large bulletin board at left, tear sheets from magazines jostle with personal mementos and framed art. The significant table in the foreground is by George Nakashima. Opposite, the space between O’Brien’s portrait wall and his secretary is bridged by narrow, stepped screens, which are hung with smaller pictures. The vintage photograph of a Navajo boy, circa 1907, is by Karl Moon. The Irish hall chair is mid-18th century.

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room key

st. barts:

a beauty on the beach Luxury has a Gallic accent at the Cheval Blanc St.-Barth Isle de France. By Rita Guarna

If the Hotel St.-Barth Isle de France were a woman, you could say she married well. French luxury brand LVMH (Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy) could have its choice of lovely “mademoiselles” when searching for a suitable match in North America, but the boutique hotel on Anse des Flamands, probably the prettiest beach on the island, won out and after a year-long engagement (read: renovation), it joined the exalted Cheval Blanc family. (Other family members include Courchevel in France and Randheli in the Maldives.) Perhaps the best part of the union is that it appears that little has changed at the beloved hotel, now called the Cheval Blanc St.-Barth Isle de France. The staff—the hotel’s heart and soul—remains the same: affable, accommodating to a fault and decidedly French. The only difference is that now they don charming seersucker uniforms. Similar too are the guest quarters—40 suites, bungalows and villas, which feel less like hotel rooms than the bedrooms of a Provençal family. The whitewashed country furnishings have been upgraded with the brand’s signature taupe plus accents of the palest salmon-pink, which you’ll find on everything from beach towels to pillows to glassware. Thankfully, the popular daily fashion shows remain too. They feature resort wear from the hotel’s closet-sized boutique stuffed with everything from Pucci bikinis and stylish caftans to straw hats and jewelry. Don’t be surprised if the model, Roxane, looks familiar: When she’s not strolling the sandy catwalk, she’s taking your dinner order in a charmingly halting English. Oh, yes, the food. As a French territory, St. Barts not surprisingly has a cuisine that reminds you of dining in the south of France. Chef Yann Vinsot oversees a pair of excellent eateries on this property: La Case de L’Isle, featuring sophisticated French-Caribbean plates (plus a 150-odd selection of wines and champagnes) and the more casual La Cabane de L’Isle, site of the fashion shows. Only eight miles across, St. Barts (short for St. Barthélemy and sometimes spelled St. Barth) is a hilly (thanks to a number of volcanic peaks) speck popping out of the northeast Caribbean in the French West Indies. Discovered by Christopher Columbus in 1493 (who named it for his brother Bartolomeo), the island was settled by the French and owned for a while by From top, Should you tire of relaxing on the beach, a tranquil pool awaits at the Cheval Blanc St.-Barth Isle de France. Enjoy cocktails for two with a breathtaking view from this private ocean-facing perch.

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Sweden before returning to French control. It became chichi after the Rockefellers and Rothschilds fell for its charm in the mid-’50s. With no direct flights, getting to St. Barts isn’t easy. Some folks fly to St. Maarten and take a short flight or ferry across. A more civilized crossing (read: easier) is flying to San Juan, then boarding a tiny puddle jumper. One of Tradewind Aviation’s multiple daily flights will do nicely. Its Pilatus PC-12s are comfortable and sturdy—important features as the eight-seater threads between two jagged peaks before touching down on a teensy runway. (Flights from St. Thomas and Antigua are also available.) While the atmosphere is relaxed, folks do dress to impress while shopping or dining in the capital city, Gustavia, with its yacht-lined harbor. (The island hosts one of the world’s most thrilling yacht races, Les Voiles de St. Barth.) Luxury brands abound along with unique boutiques, often outposts of exclusive Parisian designers. Prefer to test your sea legs with a more gentle cruise? Rent a catamaran with crew for a day-long or half-day tour. Our captain, Miguel of St. Barth Sailor, anchored in the bay near Colombier, where we swam to the beach (the only one of 16 beaches not easily accessible), after which we sipped champagne and nibbled on a gourmet lunch prepared by Cheval Blanc (lest we miss the restaurants’ gastronomic delights too much). Back on terra firma, we proceeded to Bonito, where fashionistas flock to enjoy a delicious Latin American menu alongside unrivaled views of the harbor from an open-air pavilion. If your “cruise” doesn’t offer enough of a respite, the spa back at Cheval Blanc will chase away any lingering stress. It offers signature Guerlain treatments. (It’s the only Guerlain spa in the Caribbean.) Try the Solar Escape, a body massage combined with a facial or let a beauty coach choose an indulgent experience for you. Do you think you could enjoy an island with no casinos, no all-inclusives, no cruise ships in port? An island with no poverty, no crime, no beach vendors? With unfailingly polite people, awe-inspiring vistas, white sand (or shell or stone) beaches and top-notch cuisine? I do. Clockwise from top, a private pool, one of the many amenities of the tucked-away Garden Suites; modeling the statement-making fashions available at the tony boutique; snorkeling in the blue waters of the Caribbean right in the resort’s backyard; the ultimate in luxury: a three-bedroom villa set on the white sand beach; salade niçoise, perfect for a light lunch.

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brooklyn revolution

When a couple got the chance to renovate an apartment on storied Montague Street, downsizing felt like an upgrade.

Interior design by

Jilian Bates for Safavieh Photography by Peter Rymwid Text by Mark Dowden

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In the sunny breakfast area (left), a round mirrored chandelier reflects the table below. The crisply tailored living room doubles as a dining room when company visits. In the bedroom (below), wall covering in an oversized damask pattern and a bed in the Louis XVI style add gracious formality.

The top of Montague Street in Brooklyn Heights is thick with historical and literary associations. Probably the best known is Bob Dylan’s verse from “Tangled Up in Blue”: I lived with them on Montague Street In a basement down the stairs There was music in the cafés at night And revolution in the air Two centuries earlier, the actual Revolution was fought here: A plaque at the end of the street marks the spot where Washington planned the Battle of Long Island from the since-vanished house known as Four Chimneys. A scant hundred steps away is the brownstone in Montague Terrace where the poet W.H. Auden lived and wrote in the late 1930s, and immediately next door to that is the townhouse where the novelist Thomas Wolfe lived and wrote a few years before. These associations were part of the allure for Michael and Maya Grinfeld, who recently downsized their home. They traded a large suburban house on Long Island for a four-room apartment near the top of Montague Street, just a block from the Brooklyn Heights promenade, with its jaw-dropping views of New York Harbor, the East River and lower Manhattan. Michael, a real estate agent who specializes in Brooklyn Heights and adjacent neighborhoods, gets a gleam in his eye when he talks about his new environs—the history; the views; the quiet, tree-lined streets; the farmers’ market; the cafés and shops. Getting there took time. The move started a major renovation of the original apartment in a Depression-era building. Walls were relocated, doorways created, the kitchen gutted and replaced. Then it got easy: Rather than editing down the large-scaled furniture from their house, the couple simply started over, working with designer Jilian Bates from Safavieh’s Broadway Manhattan store. “In a space that barely tops 1,300 square feet,” says Bates, “we carved out a spot within the living room for a dining table that seats 12; a charming, light-flooded breakfast nook within the kitchen; an office/library/entertainment room, and a master bedroom.” The layout allows for frequent entertaining of friends and family. After meals, the program is usually the same: a group walk to the promenade, in the footsteps of history, to drink in the postcard view.

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How to:

create Deeply Personal Spaces

By

Joe Murphy

The most delightful rooms to live in are deeply personal—beautiful, relaxing, filled with cherished objects and not overly “decorated.” While there are no hard-and-fast rules for creating deeply personal spaces, these eight guideposts will steer you on your way. Embrace the harmony of opposites. You can make visual magic by mixing different styles and unexpected objects. Try topping a classic mahogany chest with an industrial-looking lamp and a showy Venetian mirror. Use the fanciful, the historic and the humble together. Give your space rhythm. Mix the scale of furnishings and mix their placement. A playful combination of small pieces and large ones helps create rhythm. Be organic, not mathematical: Place some pieces parallel to the walls and others angled. Treat space as a visual luxury. Empty corners and empty walls can create a luxurious sense of space, so make some big decisions on what to eliminate. Replace heavy cabinets with uncluttered open shelves. Paint the walls, the base molding, door and window moldings, and the crown molding all the same color to foster a sense of height and volume. Painting the ceiling in high-gloss enamel (in white or a tint complementary to the wall color) will boost the effect.

welcoming and intimate. In very large rooms, I like to create small private areas. These cozy spaces are perfect for conversation and relaxation. Recently a design partner of mine remade the dining room in a 50th floor apartment with stunning vistas. The room became a spectacular lounge for quiet drinks with friends, where they could contemplate the view—a much improved use of the space. Explore the fine line between harmony and disharmony. I’m sometimes confused about what’s ugly and what’s beautiful. The line between the two is where the action is. We once

placed a bright automobileyellow lacquered chest in an otherwise calm entryway. It made all the difference. Don’t go it alone. Putting together a truly personal interior is best done with teammates, and not in too serious an atmosphere. I invite you to take advantage of Safavieh’s free design services. The process is fun, joyful and collaborative. We dream together, draw together, design and sometimes build together, creating deeply personal spaces that enrich our client’s lives. Joe Murphy is head designer at Safavieh Home Furnishings.

Value small things. I once spent a week arranging the top of my desk. It’s how space becomes personal and useful. Attend to bedside tabletops, vanity tops and living room tabletops. Artfully decorate them with well-designed objects you love and want to touch every day. Small, treasured pieces tie our homes to our everyday lives.

Rooms that Joe Murphy loves (from top left): two sitting rooms furnished with Safavieh Couture and (right) a dining room by Thom Filicia.

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Let nature in. Avoid heavy objects and solid-back chairs in front of windows. Instead try a chair with an open back, a low bench or ottoman, or even a clear acrylicbacked chair. Keep your window treatments as soft and translucent as your life allows. Design for emotional warmth. Each room should be calming,

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wine

make mine

madeira

After tasting the wines of Vinhos Barbeito, you’ll be glad you got reacquainted with Port’s native cousin. By Josh Sens

A high-society darling in the U.S. and abroad for generations, Madeira was adored by the Founding Fathers. They toasted the signing of the Declaration of Independence with it and served it at George Washington’s inauguration.

Nearly 30 years ago, when he first fell for Madeira, Mannie Berk knew he’d found a love with a rich but troubled past. In better days long gone, Madeira had basked in global stardom, an exotic beauty from an island of the same name that enjoyed a warm reception on American shores. The Founding Fathers adored it. They toasted the Declaration of Independence with it and poured it at George Washington’s inauguration. Madeira was the muse behind “The Star-Spangled Banner,” sipped, as he composed, by Francis Scott Key. Generations passed, and Madeira retained its golden reputation, a high-society darling in this country and abroad—until the mid-19th century, when its woes began. First came vine diseases, which ravaged old Madeira plantings, shutting down three-quarters of the wine’s producers. Decades later, Prohibition put a damper on the U.S. market, and World War II inflicted even deeper damage, closing off the shipping channels through which Madeira flowed. By the 1980s, when Mannie Berk began his romance

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Clockwise from left, barrels of Vinhos Barbeito’s renowned Madeiras; a sign welcoming visitors to the generations-old winery, one of four remaining on the island; a wax seal bearing the winery’s logo; Mannie Berk, wine importer and Madeira lover.

Comparative Notes Charleston Sercial Special Reserve $47 The driest in the series, with coffee and honey aromatics giving way to hints of salted caramel that play lightly on the palate.

Savannah Verdelho Special Reserve $47

with it, Madeira was embattled by a stubborn image problem. The real stuff was still great, but the market had been flooded with low-grade iterations, sweet and treacly. In the eyes of most consumers, Madeira wasn’t much more than a one-note cooking wine. “Madeira had suffered for so long that it never reclaimed the standing of its glory years,” Berk says. A wine writer at the time with a fledgling import business, Berk saw Madeira for what it really was: a velvety delight of unsurpassed complexity, by turns mellow and tangy, spicy and dulcet, ringing in a symphony of bright and earthy tones. Its unique qualities stemmed from its unique breeding. Produced only on a Portuguese-governed island, 360 miles west of Morocco, it arises through a heating process known as “estufagem” that dates to the age of exploration, when merchant captains, calling on Madeira, sailed away with wine casks, only to discover that the wines acquired more character the longer they sloshed about in cargo holds. Among its many virtues, Madeira is long-lived. The most prized vintages age for centuries and fetch thousands of dollars at private auctions. Left to breathe after prolonged captivity, they keep improving, as elegant on their own as they are with food. At the helm of The Rare Wine Co., the Sonoma-based import company he founded, Berk made it his business to reacquaint wine-lovers with the pleasures of Madeira: the rapturous flavor profiles found in ancient vintages. But he also had his eye on a wider target market, not just specialized collectors but everyday consumers. “Given how rare and expensive the really old Madeiras are,” Berk says, “the question became, Is it possible to produce a younger Madeira that still tastes like it’s really old?”

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That’s where his work with Ricardo Freitas came in. The third-generation proprietor of Vinhos Barbeito, one of four Madeira-producing families remaining on the island, Freitas runs his operation with a deep respect for the wine’s rich traditions. But his vision isn’t rooted solely in the past. Aware that Madeira also needed a future, Freitas joined forces with Berk to create new blends that captured the magic of the great old vintage wines. It wasn’t easy. Berk and Freitas both felt that five- to 10-year-old blends, while readily available, lacked the “magic and distinction” of truly fine Madeiras. Their solution: blending younger Madeiras with older generations, Madeiras up to 30, even 40 years of age. It took two-plus years of tinkering to arrive at a product that met their standards. The result is their Historic Series, a collection of four wines, each named for an American city (Charleston, Savannah, Boston, New York) where Madeira was prized in the 18th and 19th centuries, each reflective of a regional style that was popular in those days. Work your way through the series (and up the Eastern Seaboard) and you encounter wines that shift in keeping with the setting, the dry profile of the Charleston Sercial Special Reserve suited to the balmy Carolinas, the sweeter notes of New York Malmsey Special Reserve befitting the more bundledup Northeast. Most important, Berk says, they are balanced, complex wines that bring forth the very qualities—the acidity and sweetness, the medley of aromatics—the finest of Madeiras have been known for all along. “If you’ve never had Madeira, it’s hard to know what you’ve been missing,” Berk says. “Then you try these and you think, ‘Ah, I guess they are pretty special after all’.”

A bouquet of citrus zest that grows just a touch sweeter on the palate, then finishes with a lingering gingery spice.

Boston Bual Special Reserve $47 Continuing the progression, ever so slightly, up the sweetness scale, but with smoky undercurrents and bright notes of cinnamon and clove.

New York Malmsey Special Reserve $47 Rich and velvety, blending hints of almond, cherry and chocolate that make it a perfect match for desserts.

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safavieh happenings

1 Joe Murphy, Michael Yaraghi and Kevin Karagulian hosted an event for the Interior Design Society at Safavieh Broadway. 2 Cindy Rubin and Lydiane Interdonato. 3 Alexis Puccio and Natalie Lindeman at work in the Safavieh art studio. 4 Cindy Rubin, Tiffany Yaraghi and Ashley Yaraghi at Safavieh’s holiday party. 5 Safavieh visual stylist Oksana Tanasiv and talk show host Lydiane Interdonato on the set at Safavieh Glen Cove. 6 Yaraghi cousins Darioush, Brandon, Jonathan, Andrew and Alex at Las Vegas Market. 7 At the Selva/ LUXE party at Safavieh Glen Cove: Neil Baser, Cindy Rubin, Joe Murphy, Kara Pfeiffer of LUXE, Michael Yaraghi, Catherine Scully of LUXE, Paul Braithwaite of Selva, and Lorne Gardner. 8 At the International Furnishings and Design Association’s “Take A Seat” event: Cindy Rubin, Loraine Gordon, Suzanne Petrozzino, Darioush Yaraghi and IFDA NY president Andrea Brodfuehrer.

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ADVERTISE IN

WHERE TO FIND US There are 11 Safavieh Home Furnishings galleries conveniently located in Connecticut, New Jersey and New York. DANBURY

LIVINGSTON

EAST 59TH STREET

7 Backus Avenue Danbury, CT 06810 Phone: (203) 790-7200

442 West Mount Pleasant Avenue Livingston, NJ 07039 Phone: (973) 629-5800

238 East 59th Street (Between 2nd & 3rd Aves.) New York, NY 10022 Phone: (212) 888-0626

FARMINGDALE

NEW ROCHELLE

110 Route 110 (Broad Hollow Road) Farmingdale, NY 11735 Phone: (631) 777-5678

64 Nardozzi Place New Rochelle, NY 10805 Phone: (914) 355-5353

GLEN COVE

902 Broadway New York, NY 10010 Phone: (212) 477-1234

24 School Street Glen Cove, NY 11542 Phone: (516) 365-3800

HARTSDALE

CONTACT Cindy Rubin 516.945.3911 cindy.rubin@SAFAVIEH.COM

45 South Central Avenue Hartsdale, NY 10530 Phone: (914) 681-6000

NEW YORK CITY BROADWAY & 20TH STREET

Pictured is the central building of the Safavieh Home Furnishings complex in Stamford, Connecticut. Originally a Woolworth’s, this landmark edifice was designed by William Van Alen, architect of the Chrysler Building.

PARAMUS 110 East State Route 4 Paramus, NJ 07652 Phone: (201) 291-0200

PORT WASHINGTON 2 Channel Drive Port Washington, NY 11050 Phone: (516) 945-3868

STAMFORD 230 Atlantic Street Stamford, CT 06901 Phone: (203) 327-4800

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the last word with...

Thom Filicia

The makeover maven touts the importance of simplicity and surprise. Thom, describe your basic approach to interior design. I try to design rooms that are sophisticated and stylish, but also approachable and inviting. A room should have personality, a sense of place and a sense of authenticity. I don’t like rooms in which everything matches! I see my role as connecting the dots in a creative way. The dots are the architecture of the home, its location, my client’s taste and his or her lifestyle. I’ve done up to four projects for the same client, and each project ends up looking unique because I take cues from the site and the architecture. You believe that simplicity is a virtue in design and decorating. Why? It’s visually stronger—not to mention more calming—to highlight a few exquisite pieces in a room than to live with many pieces of lesser quality. Put another way, your furnishings need to breathe! Simplicity is also best in architecture. I especially love barns because they have architectural honesty and purity. You’ve designed classic rooms and contemporary rooms with equal

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aplomb. Describe your approach to each style. I like to cool down a classic interior by editing the elements, so that it’s clean and concise. That ability was something I learned from Albert Hadley, who has been a big influence on me. By the same token, I tend to warm up a modern interior by layering rich materials. I don’t like it when a modern interior feels onedimensional and slick. “Warm” and “sophisticated” are not opposites. Is it important that rooms be fun? No. But individual elements that are playful or offbeat can help create a sense of ease in a room. The room is just a stage for living, and people bring their own fun to the space. You’ve said that every room should contain a surprise. Give us some examples. An interesting ceiling treatment, such as wallpaper or high-gloss paint, is a delightful surprise. I also like to pair contrasting furnishings, such as a modern dining table with Chippendale chairs lacquered in oxblood red. It’s safest to push the design envelope in a dining room or powder room because you don’t

live in them; the element of surprise retains its freshness. You can go pretty wild with a powder room and not regret it! What’s your pet peeve in home décor? Design by checklist, which feels off-the-rack. Rooms should have some uniqueness and be visually interesting. Even if it’s created from a blank slate, a room should look like it evolved over time. How do use rugs in your room designs? I think of rugs as connectors that bring together the disparate elements of a room. I love to layer rugs— for example, to start with a plain sisal rug and lay a bold patterned or textured rug on top. Layering creates interest and ease. You’re designing your third rug collection for Safavieh. Tell us what you hoped to accomplish with the first two collections. A lot of the rugs feature riffs on ikat or tribal patterns, and are hand-knotted using vegetable-dyed yarn. So the look is elegant but also a bit rugged, and the rugs work equally well in modern and traditional rooms. My goal is always to design rugs that are both timely and timeless—that feel fresh at the moment they’re introduced to your floor, and will look just as great 70 years from now. I guess you could say I’m designing modern heirlooms. Top to bottom: On walls and floor alike, subtle grey stripes unite a client’s living room. In Filicia’s own country house, layered rugs warm up the modern décor. His ikat-patterned, hand-knotted rug for Safavieh has a rugged, tribal look he admires.

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Safavieh Style: Fall/Winter 2015  

Safavieh Style: Fall/Winter 2015

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