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The Joy of Decorating: Southern Style with Mrs. Howard Hardcover – Illustrated, January 1, 2012
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About the Author
- Item Weight : 3.79 pounds
- Hardcover : 256 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1584799617
- ISBN-13 : 978-1584799610
- Dimensions : 9.25 x 1.13 x 11.75 inches
- Publisher : Stewart, Tabori and Chang (January 1, 2012)
- Language: : English
- Best Sellers Rank: #505,367 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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Inspired by stories of her own Aunt Myra's Alabama home which had ebony-stained floors, slip-covered furniture in white duck-cotton and large vases of fragrant white lilies in every room from her Uncle's floral business, Howard saw the possibilities of design. In 1996 Howard and her husband Jim combined talents and salvaged a condemned 1920's grocery store in Jacksonville, Florida and opened a design store. The Howards have since opened several more stores in Jacksonville Beach, Atlanta and Charlotte. These stores are design laboratories allowing experimentation with design elements. This experimentation and observing what design elements appeal to clients by the velocity with which they sell, Howard says, has been an invaluable education.
My favorite rooms of Howard's are the prettiest ones: the ethereal bedrooms in this book and others which have appeared on her blog. I hope her next book is a book on Bedrooms as hers are breathtaking. Also love her own homes which appear in this book, especially her 1920's Shingle Style home in Jacksonville, a home of water and light. It shimmers. The dining room is divine with its brown and cream color scheme, soft landscape mural, pleated cream cotton slipcovered chairs mixed with nailheaded brown velvet chairs, mirrored and marble topped wood sideboard, hurricane lanterns and cream-colored architectural detailing. Also love the funky, cheerful and bold yellow and blue beach house in this book which she decorated for COASTING LIVING magazine and the cerebral Manhattan show house she and her husband designed for HOUSE BEAUTIFUL--the textured creamy guest room with double day bed is charming!
As the mother of four children, Howard combines pretty with practical. She works with seven themes in decorating which structure this book and has tips on each. Her seven themes with some sample tips:
INVITING--every house should have a paneled room. Wood has a warmth that you just can't capture with plain walls or sheetrock. Paneling can be stained, painted, limed, bleached, glazed or lacquered--the choices are endless.
INSPIRING--don't be afraid of color. It's the easiest way to make a statement in a room. Rooms painted in saturated colors usually dictate a lighter shade for the trim.
TIMELESS--an all time favorite space of mine is the drawing room at Colefax & Fowler's showroom in a nineteenth-century London townhouse. ...like all great timeless rooms, it's full of history yet entirely current.
GRACEFUL--There's nothing more pleasing than architectural balance, but a room arranged in perfect symmetry is rigid and boring. I'll admit that I love pairs--chairs, mirrors, stools, lamps, but I'm not a slave to them. My rule is to keep the mix interesting and lively by not placing more than four pairs in a single room.
TRANQUIL--What we touch influences how we feel. Tranquil spaces require a perfect balance between the raw and the refined, the sumptuous and the simple. When choosing textiles, study the luster and finish of each, being mindful of how it will be used and what it will sit next to.
CASUAL--sturdy and stylish (outdoor fabrics), they are also soft and stylish. I like to use slipcovers in relaxed rooms because they have a looser look and can be taken off and washed. Anything made of natural fibers--wicker, rattan, raffia--brings everything down a notch. Painted wood coffee and end tables are also favorite choices because they can take it when people leave their drinks out--or even dance on them.
COMFORTABLE--my favorite upholstery fabrics are soft velvet, mohair and chenille.....My male clients typically have one request: a big, comfortable chair. I say give the man his chair! If he wants leather, give him leather. If he asks for a recliner, try to talk him into a chair and ottoman.
If you love a bit of pretty in a room, you should appreciate this joyful book on decorating.