Monday, February 8, 2010

My love affair with white

"White ... is not a mere absence of colour; it is a shinning and affirmative thing, as fierce as red, as definite as black ... God paints in many colours; but He never paints so gorgeously ... as when He paints in white."

-- Gilbert Keith Chesterton [British author, 1874-1936] "A Piece of Chalk," Tremendous Trifles (1909)

I adore white. White to me is the color of all colors. When I look at a white piece, I am forced to focus on all the nuisances in texture, the various shades of white and the dimensions that a white piece may offer. White to me is calming, refreshing, pure -- it is everything I long my life to be and strive for every day.

My personal style reflects my love affair with white. My home is white. And as one of my dear neighbors ardently described to one of my clients when she asked if my house was anything like my store, "I tell you, her house is white, inside and out, and when I say white, I mean white! The floors are white, the walls are white, the kitchen is white, the furniture is white -- everything in her house is freaking white!!!" Okay, so I like white-- a lot. And it's true, my house is white but not ALL white -- I happen to have a black labrador. Geez!!

You see, when I built my house, I decided it would be a blank canvas -- a blank canvas upon which I would paint the colors and history of my life and my family's. So when I hang something on a wall, or I put a photo on a tabletop, that is where your eyes focus -- on the things that are important to me.

People ask me if decorating with white is difficult or suicidal especially when you have young kids. Frankly, I have two kids under 6 and three dogs. Yes, I do vaccuum daily (could someone have warned me that labradors shed like crazy?????), but I find that white is the most forgiving color for a young family. Something spills on the white linen sofa, I take the slipcover off and wash it in the washer (oh yes, ask me about my washable belgian linen sofa line -- it's to die for and oh, so easy to take care of). Something falls on my white painted wooden floors, I wipe it right off. That white is difficult to keep clean is an urban myth. Trust me. I adore white and I'm living proof that it works and that it is beautiful. My home is my haven and when I come home after a hectic day out in the world (back in the days when I was in the courtroom all day fighting big bullies), there is nothing more soothing, more calming or more beautiful, than walking in to a little piece of heaven.

Here are a few photos of some of my most favorite white places and things.

My shop.

Don't you love my custom white belgian linen tablecloth? I just want to put that on my bed!

This chandelier is right by my front window at the shop.

My kitchen (or at least part of it).

A peak into my family room. I got that thread bare rug for $85 in the French Quarter!

One of my bergere chairs at the shop. I love the vintage white matelasse fabric on it!!! Just pop the cushion cover in the wash and whola!

One of my favorite signature chairs. In fact, Bonjour Madame Stephanie has a pair of them in her living room which she got from me! They are sooooooo beautiful and I love the ballerina ties in the back.

The 18th cent. armoire at my shop and on Etsy. I absolutely love the hand-carved cabbage roses and the white on white is so dreamy!

Okay, Ms. FrenchBlue, where can I get my hands on this beauty? Have you all visited her blog? If you haven't, please go ..... Now! She has some gorgeous white on white creations.

And this, my dears, is one of my favorite dining rooms. Of course, I can't always convince someone to add a french settee on one side of a farm table, but doesn't it look grand?
That's how I have it at the store. Is there any other way?

So when you need a jolt of whiteness, just drop in to my little corner shop or home where white is the color du jour. I promise you, you will fall in love.


  1. AHHHHH a breath of fresh New Orleans air ...
    pardon me while I take another deep breath ...

  2. I do so agree that white is easier to keep clean. You can't use bleach on colours!!!!

  3. I'm a convert to white. I was completely skeptical, I admit. But after seeing it on my walls and how fresh and clean everything looks, I absolutely love it. I finally have a blank canvas to unify my little house. I hung one of your metis sheets today over the archway from the living room to the guest bedroom. Another layer of white, and it looks divine!

  4. Just fabulous... so love these looks. X

  5. Hello dear Karina!-)***

    Wihte color is a brihgtness of the life,shure!!!

    I love you blog very much,you made me SO relax and really,really glad!-)***
    You blog is a place to be here!-)

    With love and care,


  6. Bonjour Karina,
    So lovely - I love the French daybed in the first photo and the chandelier and ...everything else!
    A bientôt!

  7. Amazing, beautful, divine - not enough words to describe what I see in this pictures! White on white is one of my favorite combinations and one day, ONE DAY! - I will have all white on white room in my house. :-) Until then my 4 cats and 3 dogs will not permit me to live my dream. Thank you for the wonderful post! This chandelier is amazing!!!

  8. I'm deeply moved by your blog, Karina. I've just read every word and looked at every picture.
    I'll be a faithful follower!

  9. Hello, I found you through Patina Soul and I must say your blog is absolutely gorgeous! I've so been wanting to visit Lousiana again and now your store is a great excuse to. I'm adding you to my blog roll, hope you'll stop by for a visit.

  10. Karina I'm just dyin' to get out a paint brush and slap white paint on everything I own! I have a french armoire fetish, just can't seem to get enough of them! *winks* And I'm longing to paint one in white. My DH has managed to talk me out of said paint job so far.....But after reading this post I'm not sure I can resist! Thanks for sharing all the yummy white! What a beautiful store and home you have! Vanna

  11. I too have a settee on the side of my table! Your store and home just drip in elegance and pretty!


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