Wednesday, December 22, 2010

1stdibs Releases Its Ultimate Gift Guide

Okay, guys and dolls, there is only a few days left until Christmas and I just thought we'd have some fun and see what the editors of 1stdibs have selected this year for their Ultimate Christmas Gift Guide. And when they say "Ultimate," they mean "ultimate."

Here are but a few of their choices.

1. From Yafa Signed Jewels
VAN CLEEF & ARPELS Diamond Snow Flakes Necklace set with 75 carats of diamonds.

Price $285,000.

2. From Christopher Hodsoll LTD
18th century

Price $320,000

3. From M.S. Rau Antiques
HARRY WINSTON Asscher-Cut Golconda Diamond Ring. Spectacular size and rarity characterize this 5.06-carat Golconda diamond by the legendary Harry Winston. Known as the "Ultimate Diamond," this enchanting stone represents the incredibly small number of Golconda diamonds that have ever been on the market.

Price: $685,000

4. From Hyde Park Antiques, LTD.


Price: $78,000

5. From Cheid & Read

Title: Joan Mitchell, Untitled, 1959
Artist: Joan Mitchell (1926-1992, American)
Year: 1959

Materials/Techniques: Oil on canvas

Price $900,000

6. From Clinton Howell Antiques

An Important Pair of George III Carved Mahogany Armchairs, c. 1755.

Price: $295,000

7. From H.M. Luther, Inc.

Price: $ Contact Dealer.

8. From Pullman Gallery

Art Deco 'Boudoir Grand' Piano by J. Strohmenger & Sons, 1938.

Price: $85,000

9. From Jamb Ltd.

A stone sculpture of Air on plinth.

Price: $63,000

10. From Lief
Rococo Swedish Day Bed in pale blue patina, c. 1750.

Price: $47,000

For these and other "Ultimate Gift Ideas," visit the 1stdibs Holiday Guide.

And while you are there, feel free to hop on over to my own little shop in 1stdibs at disegno Karina Gentinetta.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Christmas In New Orleans

You don't normally think of New Orleans during Christmas time. But we deck our center halls in our shotgun houses just like everyone else. So while you are inside, wherever you are, snuggled with your hot chocolate and powdered beignets, I thought I'd share some scenes of my city during this time of year so that you too can get into the Creole Christmas spirit.

Decorated wrought iron fence in Garden District (photo from Flickr).

Once in a blue, blue moon, we do get snow! This was a rare event for us in 2005 and again in 2009.

The beautiful Academy of the Sacred Heart on St. Charles Avenue (an all girls' catholic school from pre-k to highschool). My sister, Vanesa, is the government teacher there and I understand I have quite a few followers from the school. I'm so honored!

The French Quarter...

Loyola University's chapel.

Some more festive scenes in the French Quarter...

Christmas on Fulton Street.

More French Quarter....

There goes that Streetcar again down St. Charles Avenue. Last year, my kids, sisters and mother took it all the way down to the Fairmont Hotel (now the Roosevelt Hotel) which gets decked out in a Christmas wonderland (below).

The Roosevelt Hotel.

A New Orleans Creole Christmas dinner.


The Monteleone Hotel.

A streetlight.

Christmas Under the Oaks at our beautiful City Park.

People strolling in the French Quarter.

Wish I could tell you who decorated this beautiful marble fireplace, but unfortunately, I saved this photo in my folder without a name.

The annual Christmas Caroling on Jackson Square infront of St. Louis Cathedral. Everyone gets a candle and lights it at the same time. It is a beautiful sight.

A holiday table setting by Perch in New Orleans.

A christmas tree in a New Orleans Garden District Home (photo by Coco of Cococozy).

Hope you enjoyed Christmas in New Orleans!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

disegno Karina Gentinetta goes to Hollywood

It was just an ordinary Friday a month ago at my store in New Orleans. There had not been too much traffic that day as it was a rainy sort of day. Just as we were about to close, a nice, outgoing man in jeans and a backpack walked in and was looking around at the shop. After looking around, he came up to my husband who was minding the store that day and told him how beautiful he thought everything was. How I love to hear those words!!!! I never get tired of getting people's reactions to what I once thought was an impossible dream of mine.

So this really nice guy starts talking with my husband and asks him whether we would be open to loaning some of our pieces for a movie set. He wouldn't say which movie they were filming in town but since New Orleans has become quite an attraction for movie filming (we recently had The Curious Case of Benjamin Button filmed right in our neighborhood), we are used to movie people being around. My experience with film set decorators has been wonderful. They recently filmed a Disney family movie, "The Revenge of the Bridesmaids" with Raven and used a few of my pieces for that set which have since sold. Not only are set decorators and their crew a talented group of individuals, but they are also interesting, highly unique, and very wonderful to work with. They take the utmost care of every piece they have on loan and they are extremely appreciative of our city and its people.

So, knowing this about them, we had no problem agreeing to have them use a couple of my antiques on their movie set, regardless of what movie it was for.

Among those pieces were some of my all time personal favorites -- The lovely pair of Swedish Style Painted Nighstands....

I just love these pieces painted in tones of greys and whites with detailed carvings on legs.

And this dainty French antique painted drop leaf petite secretaire with just the perfect patina. Oyster white with pale blue accents and painted interior....

And this 19th c. Louis XIV Daybed, completely restored and upholstered in a natural belgian linen with a custom mattress.

And even some of the beautiful linen shams and pillows from my four poster bed.

So after all the arrangements were made, I asked the set decorator what movie they were for. He said they were trying to keep very quiet about it but since my pieces would be featured prominently on the set, he could tell me. Besides, I've since learned that it's really not quite much of a secret anymore.

The pieces are now back from the set (well, at least from the set of this scene sequence that was filmed thus far). Can you guess what movie that may have been for?

I'll give you a hint.........

I have not read any of the books nor seen any of the movies.... yet. But I guess I'll just have to see Twilight: Breaking Dawn when it hits theaters next year. My pieces were for Edward and Bella's wedding cottage, the first of many scenes to be filmed in and around New Orleans.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

The Peak of Rustic Chic

If you haven't picked up the latest issue of Elle Decor, I'll ruin it for you. I got mine the other day and while laying in bed last night, I virtually escaped to this beautiful country place in the Sawtooth Mountains in Ketchum, Idaho -- the American Alps as they are called.

"The beauty of these majestic mountains (not to mention the world-class skiing) has been luring Rusty and Mary Lynn Turner and their three children here from their native Newport Beach, California, for more than a quarter century. But it was only three years ago that the couple decided to build their ideal family retreat, one that Mary Lynn, an interior designer, insisted appear as if it had been there all along. 'I always wanted to do something rustic,” she says, “but I didn’t want a luxury log home or a modern ski chalet. I wanted a house that looked like we had rescued it, like we brought it back to life.'" In my opinion, that's the only way to do it.

With daughters Emily and Marie, Lynn set out to make her dream come true. Her inspiration were the Old World barns that dot the European countryside. For years, Mary Lynn had been filing away pictures of stone farmhouses snapped on repeated visits to Provence that she knew she would one day draw inspiration from.

I don't want to ruin the rest of the story for you of how she set about to build her home, but I wanted to give you a sneak peek at the finished result. Get yourself a cup of hot cocoa and enjoy the view!

I just adore the mixing and matching of these dining room chairs. The "captain's" chairs on each end are beautiful Louis XIII style arm chairs, almost exactly like the ones I just recently restored for my store.

These have not yet been listed on 1stdibs... but I'm dying to show them off. Completely restored down to the springs, these highly detailed carved arm chairs were upholstered in thick Belgian linen and french brass tacks.

Sorry, I digressed.......

Now, back to Mary Lynn's beautiful home in the Sawtooth mountains....

Can you imagine waking up to this beauty?????

Mother and daughter design team - Mary Lynn, Marie, and Emily.

I love the white linen sofa. For a similar version, check out the Belgian Linen Slipcovered Roma sofa.

My children would adore these bunkbeds!

Photos from Elle Decor, December 2010 issue
Hope you enjoyed the tour.