The White Room Roundup

by 1 June 28, 2016

Painting interior walls and trim the color white can brighten up and enlarge the dullest of spaces.  A white room provides a blank canvas.  British paint company, Farrow & Ball established in 1946 offers a nice selection of different shades of white. FarrowAndBall While on the topic of white interiors, I would be remiss to not mention  British Interior Designer Syrie Maugham.  Syrie Maugham was an educated, petit woman who began her career as an interior designer at 42 years of age in 1927.  After leaving an unhappy marriage to a British Aristocrat, Syrie met and then married famed playwright Somerset Maugham with whom she had one daughter.  Their marriage unfortunately suffered a similar fate to her first.  Somerset was very bitter post divorce.  His acclaimed novel, "Of Human Bondage" is rumored to have been based on his marriage to Syrie.  Bettie Davis and Leslie Howard starred in the film adaptation. Back to Design!  Syrie's career took a major leap when she decided to re-do the music room in the flat she shared with then husband, Somerset.   Syrie sanded, pickled and painted every visible surface in the room different shades of white.  The result was something fresh and chic.  Her midnight party for the London Smart Set introduced her all-white look and Syrie Maugham became a cause celebre. English Aristocrats and Hollywood Movie Stars were soon clamoring to retain the services of the "White Queen".   Silver Screen Goddess, Jean Harlowe not only hired Syrie to design her Hollywood home but also saw to it Syrie was hired as the  Set Decorator on her film "Dinner at Eight". [gallery columns="2" size="full" ids="5158,5136"] Much in the spirit of Syrie Maugham's first all-white room is the interior of Hueso Restaurant in Guadalajara, Mexico.  Everything from antlers to framed place settings are painted white.  The long communal tables made of reclaimed pine add a clean modern element to the object encrusted walls designed by Ignacio Cadena brother of Executive Chef Alfonso Cadena. [gallery columns="2" size="full" ids="5150,5161,5149,5165"] Europeans have a flair for creating streamlined interiors that feel welcoming and not staid.   I love the use of plants as an anchor mixed with natural woods and wicker.  Accents of handblown green glass is a beautiful tie in with the plants. [gallery columns="2" size="full" ids="5145,5146"] High Ceilings paired with large dramatic chandeliers definitely make a statement as these 2 examples illustrate.  For an elegant and austere look, you can forego art and let the architecture of the room and the central seating area dictate the space.  For a more distressed, European elegance, I like the mixed use of unframed and framed canvases and outdoor stone statues.  The cute mutt who resembles my old dog Rusty doesn't hurt either. [gallery columns="2" size="full" ids="5174,5175"] And to finish off my white room roundup, I'd like to introduce some color!  Bright colors bring instant charm and life to an all white space.   I like the mix of patterns and the way the textiles pull from colors in the paintings. [gallery columns="2" size="full" ids="5177,5155"] That's it for now.  I hope you enjoyed my white room round up.  Are you contemplating a fresh coat of paint? City of Z Design


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