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The Neo-Trad Gets a Makeover

Katie’s New Look

Back in 2009 when we were blogging newbies, we came across an enchanting blog called The Neo-Trad and knew that Katie Armour Taylor had something special.  Her fresh sense of style and classic American vibe captured the essence of Audrey Hepburn and Grace Kelly to a tee.  Then along came her online magazine, Matchbook, which we loved (who wouldn’t want to be a Matchbook Girl?) and was so sad to see close in 2015.

Katie Travels

Katie Entertains

Katie has been blogging all along and we still read every one of her posts when they show up in our inbox.  We’re also not ashamed to say that we stalk her on Instagram and her move to Copenhagen with her eccentric English husband and their plump pug, Alfred, has added a decidedly international flair to her feed.

Katie Decorates

Katie Lives

We don’t know how Katie found time to makeover her site between trips to India, Turkey and the like, but she did and she just launched Katie Considers last week.  From travel (city guides are being finalized!) and fashion (you can’t miss her Daily Hunt) to interior design and art, you’ll love what Katie has to offer.  And she has even expanded her shop to include a library so you can explore all of her favorite books by category!

Katie Packs

Even her newsletter has been given a major upgrade and if you subscribe to it, you’ll receive “25 Classics Every Woman Needs in her Closet” style guide.  What better way to get your wardrobe summer ready!



Moody Blooms

Pale Pink Perfection

It’s Groundhog Day and if Punxsutawney Phil decides spring is not on its way, we’ll be feeling a little gloomy…  A condition that will most likely be cured as we unpack the gorgeous stems we bought in Atlanta for our new Fall/Winter 2018 collections.

Designers Guild – Delft Flower Grande

BP – Mini Floral Mini Backpack

Moody blooms have always appealed to us and they’re all we see on Instagram these days.  From window shades to wallpaper, fixtures to fashion, designers are loving this trend.

Kohler – Midnight Floral Sink

Hunter – RHS Wellington Boots

Inky blossoms in dark shades of purple and burgundy have a brooding romantic quality, and we plan to mix the dark hues with pale pinks and soft peaches to lighten the mood.

Ellie Cashman – Dark Floral II Scarf

You don’t have to wallpaper a room or reupholster your couch to bring moody blooms into a room (a bigger commitment than you might want to make!) – you can always just buy one of our bouquets!  But you will have to wait until fall…

flowers / wallpaper / backpack / sink / boots / scarf


The Wabi-Sabi Way

Happy Hellebore

Perhaps it’s because we grew up in an old Belgian chateau and were raised by an Axel Vervoordt superfan that we’ve come to admire the wabi-sabi way…  Or maybe it’s because we’re just on the other side of fifty and are finally embracing our own perfectly imperfect selves.  Regardless of the reason, we’ve decided to adopt a more wabi-sabi approach to life this year.  That means we won’t replace the set of dishes we received as wedding gifts even if some of them are chipped…

Kitchen Calm

and we’ll celebrate the single blossoming branch rather than the opulent bouquet.

Branching Out

We’ll admire the perfectly painted patina of the armoire our father bought in Provence so many years ago and ignore the trail of fingerprints our boys have blessed our white walls with.

Perfect Patina

Perhaps we’ll hit some flea markets in search of vintage bottles (and you might see some in our new spring collection)…

Antique Chic

And maybe we’ll even let the weeds grow between the flowers and plant in calm, monochromatic hues.

Green Gardens

In this sleek, tech-obsessed, mass-produced world, a little wabi-sabi can go a long way – don’t you agree?

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Ultra Violet

Happy Purple Holidays

Can you guess what Pantone’s Color of the Year is for 2018?  Ultra Violet is a complex, celestial purple that sits closer to blue on the color wheel than red.  Given that this hue has a mystical and spiritual quality, we’re not surprised that the folks at Pantone chose it.

Mary McGeen

After all that’s been happening socially and politically this year, it’s time to infuse a little purple magic in our lives, and in our homes.  You can make quite an statement by painting your entry a gorgeous shade of lilac…

Alex Papachristidis

Or take a cue from Alex Papachristidis and mix different shades to create a living room that is energizing, yet relaxing.

David Kaihoi

Who wouldn’t want to dine in this divine nook?

Phoebe Howard

And getting a good night’s rest would be easy in this lovely lavender bed room.

Jamie Drake

Since ultra violet has both warm and cool qualities, it’s more versatile than you think.  We’ve even paired it with Greenery (this year’s Pantone choice) to great effect!

tree / entry / living room / dining room / bed room / sitting room


Local Gems Team Up For The Holidays

Quinto Welcomes You!

When you cross a super talented photographer (who’s a complete minimalist!) with an interior designer known for her whimsical yet modern style you get a storybook 1916 cottage decked out for the holidays…  and some lovely images in the pages of this month’s Connecticut Cottages & Gardens magazine.

Modern + Whimsy

Those of you who follow us on Instagram and read this blog know how much we admire Jane Beiles and her work, and we’ve featured her home here before.  We’re also huge fans of another local gem, Melissa Lindsay of Pimlico Interiors, so when the two teamed up to decorate for the holidays, we had to be in on the action!  [Yes, the pine branches in the picture above are ours but not the fresh greenery below…]

Gorgeous Greens

Wanting her home to feel festive but not scream holidays (no red and green tartan here!), Jane had local floral studio Birch Designs adorn the front door and staircase with fresh greens and create arrangements appropriate for the season.

Sugar + Spice

“Tis The Season for Amaryllis

Lindsey added frosted pine cones, illuminated birch trees and glittery reindeer to the mix to create a slightly Scandinavian feel, perfect for the clean, yet lighthearted interiors.  The result is fresh, peaceful and utterly charming.

Peace on Earth

Are you ready for the holidays?

photos by Jane Beiles


Wrapping Up The Holidays

It’s A Wrap!

Wrapping paper is a bit like the icing on a cake – the prettier a gift is wrapped, the more you want to see what’s inside.  We’re suckers for anything with a botanical print and the less traditional, the better.  That’s why we fell hard for Justina Blakeney‘s new collection of wrapping paper when we discovered it on Instagram.

Let It Roll

Packages Tied Up With String

Truth be told, we haven’t tackled the shopping yet, but are truly inspired by Justina’s creative touch.  She knows first hand how much a beautifully wrapped gift can enhance the whole experience of giving and receiving and shares some wonderful tips on her blog, Jungalow.

Foraged and Found

Why not add a succulent or charm to the bow for a special touch?  Or try one of Justina’s pins for extra bling.  Not only are the Jungalow patterns colorful and fun, they’re perfect throughout the year.

Noah Wrapping Paper

Hamsa Wrapping PAper

At some point we’ll stop procrastinating and actually have things to wrap…  Are you all wrapped up for the season?



Sam Allen Redux

Fairfield Beach Modern

If you combined clean, comfortable style and added interesting, organic elements you’d get Sam Allen’s chic aesthetic.  We’ve known Sam for years, ever since he broke out onto the local design scene at the age of 19, and are huge fans of his work.  We’ve even been lucky enough to work with him on a number of projects and love it when he shows up at our studio on a whim.

Glamorous Estate

Compo Beach Guest Room

Between setting beautiful tables for the Lenox Hill Neighborhood House Gala and taking on clients all over Fairfield County, Sam has found the time to redesign his website and it is as stylish as he is.

Timeless Beauty

We dare you to spend some time browsing through his residential projects and not want to live in each and every space.  Whether it’s an elegant living room, a luxurious kitchen or a colorful office, Sam’s interiors have a certain pizzazz that’s undeniably his.

Compo Beach Master Bedroom

Pied a Terre Office

It’s hard to believe that it’s been eight years since Sam launched his eponymous firm (since he still looks like a teen) and we wish him all the best for many years to come!

Happy Friday and may your weekend be fabulous…



A Peck of Painted Pumpkins

Moody Florals

Who’s ready for Halloween?  We definitely aren’t!  Perhaps it has to do with the Indian summer we’ve been having…  The leaves are barely falling and we haven’t had to pull out our fall jackets.  And when it comes to fall decorating, there’s nary a pumpkin in sight.  Thankfully, the boys are old enough that pumpkin carving is not on the agenda but we’d still like to celebrate the season in style.

Fall Flowers

That’s why we’ll be rolling up our sleeves and getting our paintbrushes out this weekend.  No carve Halloween pumpkins are all the rage (time starved moms like us are making sure they are!) so why not join the ranks and try some of these ideas out.

Falling Leaves

To be honest, our mother is the creative one in the family so these first three designs may be more than we can handle…

Neon and Gold

Just Jade

Marvelously Marbled

But we’re willing to try the more monochromatic styles and who doesn’t love blue and white in any season.  Hmmm…  Maybe we can convince the boys to help!

P.S.  Click on the photo links below to get to the DIY instructions.

moody / floral / foliage / neon / jade / marbled


Welcome to France & Son

Our Tres Chic Orchid

There’s a huge demand for mid-century modern design these days but most of the original furniture is way to pricey for our budget.  That’s why we love France & Son where you can buy a Sputnik chandelier or a Barcelona-inspired chair for an affordable price.  With a showroom in lower Chelsea and a full online site, France & Son offers a wide range of furniture and accessories designed by the likes of Sean Dix and Thomas Bina.

Anders Sideboard

Modern Dining

Shelves (Not Just For Books!)

Outdoors / Indoors

We’ve been fans of the store for a while so when they placed an order last month for our flowers, we were beyond thrilled.  So we’d like to give a warm Wednesday welcome to France & Son!

Bold Stripes

P.S.  And check out their design blog and Instagram feed – both are filled with pretty pictures and design inspiration.



Mixed Media Flowers

Livia Cetti Paper Flowers

A rose is a rose is a rose…  and depending on who created it (Clare Potter? Livia Cetti? Tommy Mitchell?), a faux rose can be made of paper, porcelain or even metal.  After Avi Steinberg wrote a letter of recommendation for fake flowers in The New York Times Magazine (yeah, Avi!), we’ve seen more and more press on the variety of faux flowers out there.

Livia Cetti Orange Tree

Vladimir Kanevsky Loose Stems

Tommy Mitchell Wall Flowers

From the versions that we use made of high end poly-cottons that mimick the shape and feel of a petal or leaf to perfection (we call them “nature’s twins”) to the ones Livia Cetti makes out of paper, there’s a material to fit all tastes.

Clare Potter Ceramic Bouquet

Diane James Home In Full Bloom (coming soon!)

For those who still need convincing that faux flowers can be exquisite, take a look at these!

paper flowers / orange tree / stems / wall art / ceramic bouquet / faux bouquet