Sunday, March 30, 2008

Get to Know: Avolli Scandinavian Antique Furnishings

My friend Tricia Mitchell, owner of Avolli Scandinavian Antique Furnishings was featured on Maine Home Design Television. Click here to learn more about her business and see some of her wonderful pieces up close! Tricia has a wonderful eye and everything she brings over is just exquisite!

Click here to see her latest treasures from her recent buying trips abroad. And dream.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Dransfield & Ross - furniture and accessories

I saw this peppy striped Louis Chair by Dransfield & Ross in Home Accents Today and just fell for it. It's cold and snowy here in New England (again!) but this piece feels like Spring! I enjoyed poking around their website and love their eclecticism throughout their line.

As see in Home Accents Today

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Meet the Artist: Darlene Bradlee

Scituate, MA based Darlene Bradlee is a multi-dimensional artist whose work in the visual arts includes photography, painting, and mixed media work. I've always enjoyed Darlene's photography for her saturated colors and spirited subjects.

I was just introduced to her fantastic mixed media pieces (where have I been to have missed these!!) including these trays and serving pieces. Using images from magazines, photos and bits of colored paper, Darlene creates these vibrant and definitely witty works of art that would be sure to liven up any table.

Darlene's work can be seen at her combined Art and Yoga studio in Norwell - Art and Soul Space.

As seen in South Shore Living magazine

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

::Surroundings:: Spring Contest - What's Your Favorite Room?


As I announced earlier this week, the lovely folks at Croft & Little Lighting have offered to award this fantastic Carlyle Beaded Lamp designed by Jonathan Adler, to a lucky ::Surroundings:: reader!

The contest is very simple. In the comments box, please share with us what your favorite room in your house is (or the one you grew up in) and why. That's it, pretty simple! I'll put all your names in a hat (literally or figuratively) and draw a winner. Speaking of names, please do not post as Anonymous! You must post with an identifiable name so that I can announce you as the winner. When you post, also please send me an email at linda.m.merrill (at) and let me know the name you used for your comment and your real name, so I can notify you that you're the winner!

The contest starts today, March 26th and ends at midnight on April 1st. I will draw and announce the winner on April 2nd. The winner will need to be willing to provide their real name, address, phone number and email address and all that good stuff so that Croft & Little can send you your prize!

Please note, C&L can only ship to the continental US, Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands and Canada. So, international readers, I'd love to include you, but I just can't. However, we'd love for you to share your favorite room story with us just the same.

For added fun, if you'd like to share a photo of your favorite space, email it to me at linda.m.merrill (at) and I'll post it! Not necessary to win, but fun never-the-less.

So, tell us about YOUR Favorite room! And Good Luck everyone!

And, don't forget to visit our prize sponsor Croft and Little and sister sites YLighting and for great options in lighting, furniture and more!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Color Chart Exhibit at Moma

March 2 - May 12, 2008

The Museum of Modern Art pays homage to color by featuring the work of forty-four artists in the Color Chart: Reinventing Color, 1950 to Today. Throughout history, color has been a medium for communicating a wide range of emotions and has served as a functional tool as well. Ann Tempkin captures all of these aspects in the exhibit. She states that "The Romantic quest for personal expression, so often acheived through color instead became Andy Warhol's 'I want to be a machine'. The artistry of mixing pigments was eclipsed by Frank Stella's 'Straight out of the can- it can't get better than that'".

If you can't make it to New York, check out the website! The timeline features offers an interactive tour of the use of color throughout the years. Or, if you like, you can browse by medium or the artist.

Color Timeline

A little taste of 1962...

Have you seen the show? If so, let us know what you think!

As seen on The Color Association newsletter.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

It's a Contest!

Croft & Little Lighting (affiliated with ::Surroundings:: sponsor Robert Abbey Lighting and sister company to YLighting and has offered to award this fantastic Carlyle Beaded Lamp designed by Jonathan Adler, to a lucky ::Surroundings:: reader!

From the Carlyle Collection by Jonathan Adler comes this boldly patterned table lamp. A parchment shade sits atop the gourd-shaped lamp base with large raised bead detailing. The rich finishes offered with this lamp beautifully accent the sculptural quality of this unique base. Full-range dimming provides just the right amount of light.

So, start thinking about where you might use this lamp in your home and check back on Wednesday, March 26th for the contest rules. And, don't forget to pass the word!!

Thanks Croft & Little!

Friday, March 21, 2008

Happy Easter!

Cloth Easter Egg from Polkadottot shop on Etsy

Easter Egg Plate by BothHandStudio on Etsy

Spiral Easter egg on Etsy by Miss Meander

Ukranian decorated Easter Eggs

Have a nice long weekend!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Blog Watching Domino

Terri Sapienza's new regular feature "Blogwatch" in the Washington Post showcases different design blogs each week. This weeks piece focuses on the veritable avalanche of bloggers (including myself) who profiled the upcoming Drew Barrymore edition of Domino Magazine.

Thursday, March 20, 2008; Page H02

Our picks to click this week:

Domino magazine's April issue with cover girl Drew Barrymore is the subject of postings on numerous blogs, including Surroundings (, Desire to Inspire (, Girl Meets Glamour (, Habitually Chic (, Sfgirlbybay ( and Style Court ( Each blog features the same "sneak peek" of images from the Barrymore story.

Could this full-court blog promotion, incited by the magazine, be the result of criticism it received last month on the design blog Decorno? Check out its "Open Letter to Domino Magazine" here:


Could be. Or, it could be that the magazines are realizing the power of the blogs to push public awareness. Hooray for the bloggers! On the other hand - do the bloggers risk becoming shills in the glow of magazine attention and, as in this case, all end up profiling the same content at the same time? And where does that leave our individual voices? On the third hand - maybe we all just really like Drew Barrymore...

Oh, and in other Washington Post/blogger news, Hue blogger Rachel Perls was also profiled today in a long piece on color. Congrats Rachel!

Stickers by DVider

Loving these wall stickers and screens by Dvider!

Perfect for open spaces or even just quick change in any space.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

The Elysée Collection: An Evening in Paris

The Elysée Collection sets the trend with a new collection of ultra feminine and teasingly romantic furniture…… “An Evening in Paris”.

This new collection is created entirely by female designers who snuggled up to traditional French style and gave it delightful doses of colors, long and graceful legs, harmonious curves and charisma. The craftsmanship is meticulous, the details are refined. The result is definitely French and delicately feminine.

While these pieces are really spectacular, a little elbow grease and DIY spirit might be all someone needed to create their own little gems, no?

Baccarat Chandelier at Jans Antiques

How fantastic is this piece!?!

Sergio at Jan's Antiques in LA sent me this information:

A Very Fine and Palatial French 19th/20th Century Gilt-Bronze and Fitted-Crystal, probably by Baccarat, Twenty-Six Light Figural Chandelier with Five Large Cherubs, each holding a frosted glass torch and surmounted with two arm-lights, each with their original frosted glass shades, the five extending supports in the form of drapes with tassels, and the bottom plaffonier with fitted cut-crystal edged panels in the form of an upside-down dome. Circa: Paris, 1900.

Provenance: The François Linke apartment in Paris.

Height: 60 1/2 inches
Width: 48 inches

Oh, to have the right spot in the chateau!

Monday, March 17, 2008

Drew Barrymore in Domino

The April issue of Domino Magazine (on newstands as of March 25th) features the production offices of fun and fearless Drew Barrymore. I've always really liked Drew for her ability to rise above her early traumas and remain optimistic and - yes - sunny. And, I don't think it's an act. I think it's the power of positive thinking.

Her offices - decorated by Ruthie Sommers - are so cheery and warm they make me want to apply for a job as an intern or copy machine girl. And if that Mac guy should happen to stop by - well, so much the better!

Thanks for the sneak peek Domino!

Get That Look! Somethings' Gotta Give extras

::Surroundings:: reader and Something's Gotta Give décor fan Laura S. emailed with lots of new information about the artwork and finishes for this popular movie set.

Laura also provided the following information on some of the artwork:

The painting over the fireplace is a reproduction of “Rockaway Beach” by Edward Henry Potthast by Film Art LA.

Here's an image of the Potthast painting:

Painting over the distressed kitchen sideboard is “French Money” by Larry Rivers; a reproduction by Film Art LA.
photo by Bob Marshak/Columbia Tristar
The lighthouse is R Kenton Nelson.

This additional information came from the Set Decorator's Society.

All the frames throughout the house are from Jewel Box.

Laura also provided the information that she believes, and I concur, that the fabric on the dining room chairs is Lee Jofa's "Bordeaux Toile".

Laura was lucky enough to score some yardage at a fabric store at a great price, but it's very hard to find at retail. My guess is that the yardage she found was probably a return that was deeply discounted to sell off. Otherwise, the fabric is only available "to the trade" and retails for $148.00 per yard. If you would like to order the fabric at a discount off the retail price, I can help! Click here for more information.

Thanks Laura!