An interior is the natural projection of one’s soul, and Balzac was
right in giving it the same importance as to dress.
Fashion is our inherently outward style -- the look we wish to project to others, nonverbally communicating our individuality to the world. Interior design is more reflective of ourselves and our family; it's what comforts and insulates us from the outside world. Fashion is an expression of who we are today. Interiors are an expression of where we've been and where we hope to be headed.
Today we will look at some of the great fashion icons and their interiors, and see how they meld their fashion and interior styles. How similar are their interior design and runway styles? Do they follow a strict design path that informs both their runway and domicile looks? Or do some designers choose to have completely divergent interior and fashion-house styles, choosing not to take their work home with them?
Style: English with American sensibility
|Ralph Lauren, from Spring 2011 runway. Menswear inspired yet feminine, easy and flowing.|
|Ricky and Ralph Lauren. Photography by Durston Saylor|
How could I write about Fashion Designers and their interior designs without including fashion icon Ralph Lauren? Architectural Digest featured Lauren's Bedford, NY estate, in November, 2004 in an article written by Stephen Drucker (now Editor-in-Chief of Town & Country) that was much clipped out and is still blogged about. The stone and slate Norman-style manor, built in 1919, is 17,000 square feet, and is situated on 250 acres of manicured lawn and old-growth forest.
|Just one of the Ralph Laurens' five houses, and two of his 70 vintage automobiles.|
Looking at the drawing room, you get a real sense that the interior design is true to Ralph Lauren's style. According to Stephen Drucker, the design "...is English in flavor but with an American energy." Tartan, which has gone in and out of style over the years in the design world, has long been a style staple to Lauren, and is used liberally in both his fashion and his interiors.
|The chandelier is English, circa 1860; the table on the left is George II; the tapestry above it is 18th-century; the zebra wing chairs are Louis XV; the portrait of James Ramsey Cuthbert was painted around 1805.|
|Dark green velvet walls, threadbare oriental carpet, mixtures of tartans, chairs in aged brown leather, deep mahogany crown mouldings -- beautiful, classic, appropriate.|
|Again, aged leather, threadbare Persian carpet, mixed tartans along with polished mahogany paneling and green velvet drapery.|
Ralph Lauren's closet is so polished yet unassuming. It looks so styled, almost like it's an advert for one of his stores.
|Even the closet has the iconic Ralph Lauren style|
|Master bedroom. Walls dressed in deep-blue fabric; Georgian mahogany and walnut bureau-cabinet; Regency bed.|
Style: Doris Day meets Liberace on the Starship Interprise
|Just a simple frock: Inspired by steampunk Victorian, 40's retro, futurism, with a touch of Prairie style. From Posen's Fall 2009 Ready to Wear collection.|
|Can you believe this is NY city? Zac Posen, with friend Brian Callahan, in kitchen, which lives up to its rustic design: no stainless steel nor a dishwasher to be found. Open door leads to private garden.|
|Original wide-plank pine flooring, floor-to-ceiling windows, and carved marble fireplace -- what's not to love?|
Style: Relaxed, unconstructed, minimal
|Armani, April 2002. Photography by Durston Saylor|
|Armani, Spring 2011 runway|
Armani decided to buy the 3,500 square-foot penthouse apartment as a stopping point halfway between his home base of Milan, and the Caribbean, where he and his family frequently vacation. The designer fell for the pied-à-terre when he saw the apartment's large windows, showcasing the properties incredible views and flood of natural light. Armani explained, “Overhead lighting mars the face. Also the clothes,” he says. “You see all the wrinkles. It’s important to diffuse the light.”
|Bronze table lamp and silk slipper chair are from the Armani Casa collection. The leather stool is 1940s vintage, the cast-iron table in the entrance hall is 1920s vintage.|
"Everything that bears the Armani signature is interrelated. I want to feel an intimate environment around me where all pieces of furniture, textiles and accessories work in harmony," says the designer.
|The mahogany-and-leather desk is 1940s vintage. The minimalist styling allows the apartment's greatest design element -- its incomparable view -- to star.|
Style: Classic with an eclectic edge
|Photography by Charles Thompson|
|Tory Burch, Spring 2011 runway.|
|With marble flooring, hand-painted wallpaper and coffered ceiling, Burch's foyer is traditional and classic.|
Tory Burch's apartment, all 7,000 square feet of it, is, in her description, both serene and grand. She wanted a home that was casual enough for her three boys to skateboard around in, yet classic enough to fulfill the home of her childhood dreams, Tracy Lord's home in The Philadelphia Story. She also got the color scheme of her dreams -- orange -- that she had not realized in her previous homes.
|Gorgeous and stylistically balanced, Tory's library is in her favorite color -- orange.|
|Fresh, vibrant green velvet with black leather.|
|Tori in her dream kitchen, big enough and properly organized her large family of three boys and three stepdaughters.|