March 12, 2012

Mirror Mirror

Following the history of interiors train of thought from my last post, and the longevity of so many original concepts;  Dressing tables originated in eighteenth century France (think Marquise De Pompadour), then called 'table de toilette'.  Like so much of the new convenience furniture of that day, they were purpose built for specifically designated spaces and activities.   They lost favour in the latter part of the 20th century, but have since come back into fashion, as part of the civilized ritual of dressing and preparing for the day/night ahead.   In our modern world these purposeful tools, create graceful service. I'm a firm believer that such elegance should be brought to all aspects, of the act of living. 
In her book, Geography of Home (writings on where we live), Akiko Busch writes, 'A dressing room is a place to indulge one's fancies and compose one's soul'.  Pictured here, various RBI dressing room vignettes.

March 1, 2012

The Age of Comfort

RBI French inspired dining room
I'm a huge fan of bringing history to life via connecting personalities and actions that have shaped the way we live.  One such read is The Age of Comfort by Joan Dejean, a short history of how the modern interior came to be.  In a favourite chapter, The Original Interior Decorators and the Comfortable Room, Dejean writes: 'The new field was a match made in heaven for the archetypal house-proud age.
Interior decoration thus came into existence as a subset of the new architecture of private life.  For this reason, its discovery marked the origin of a concept that has had currency ever since: the domestic interior could and should be the expression of its owner's personal taste; it should be styled to complement the owner's life and with his or her comfort in mind.  From then on, "taste" became a buzzword in interior design........... the original interior decorators reinvented the room.  They made it a space designed no longer strictly to impress others, but above all with the wellbeing of its occupants in mind.'  Joan Dejean, The Age of Comfort.
It's amazing how radical these pivotal years were in the fashioning of domestic protocols, we continue to apply today.
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