FOURTH FLOOR WALK UP

Brooklyn based lifestyle blog by Lauren L Caron

Paris

SPACES | Our Pied à Terre in Brooklyn

SPACES, LIFELauren CaronComment
Image Source: Abkasha.com

Image Source: Abkasha.com

Last week we finally made the big 'move'  by packing up and moving 75% of our furniture and accessories into a POD, which is currently on it's way to Seattle and fingers crossed, everything arrives safe and secured. I have so much anxiety that we're going to open the POD and it'll be a mess of crumbled furniture, glass and boxes or that the door will have been opened and stuff will have been stolen. There's really nothing too valuable, we just have a lot of antiques that we really care about, and basically everything is fragile.

What's left in New York is for my pied à terre (or the apartment). I like thinking we are fancy now and have a second home in the city. We technically do, but realistically I'm going to be using it as a home base for my NY projects, and we're splitting it with my parents. We are going to wait until next year to decide if the current situation is working for us financially, or if we should rent it. 

Image Source: ABKasha.com

Image Source: ABKasha.com

Image Source: ABKasha.com

Image Source: ABKasha.com

For the time being, I'm taking advantage of the opportunity to redesign the space into a relaxing, yet productive space. I'm greatly inspired by real Parisian Haussmann pied à terres, where the decor is about less furniture, more wall space, no strict direction.  It seems to be very...  je ne sais quoi, let's call it laissez faire in style. You know, very French.  Removing the giant desk Jack built from the living room created a major domino effect, allowing me to test out different layouts and furniture placements (which I don't think is very French - except that I did it IRL not on a computer within CAD). It's so interesting how different you can make one space look by just moving around furniture. I'm breaking my own rules and doing things that I said I would never do. It's fun and it reminds me that you really can't take design too seriously. If you're intrigued to see more of my inspirations, you can find them [here]. So here are the planned ch-ch-ch-changes along with a few images of those that I've already accomplished.....

DINING TABLE

Image: LaurenLCaron Instagram

Image: LaurenLCaron Instagram

First up, we brought in an official dining table. It's for 4 people, I would love to find an extension table or one with a leaf that isn't expensive. For now though, this little french country style table is kind of perfect. We also had these neoclassical empire dining chairs that my mom has had for years, recently reupholstered in a Schumacher leopard print. I'm completely swooning over how they turned out. The table is set where the desk was and fills that space nicely. Also, when I'm not feeling the desk, I can sit here and work, it gives me a change of scenery - even if it's only a few feet away.

FURNITURE PLACEMENT

Next big change, is where the sofa is placed. The room is basically a box shape and is almost as wide as it is long, it's also the space that you pass through to get to the bedroom, so it can present some layout challenges. I always had the sofa set on the back wall opposite the built-ins and placed a coffee table in front with the two accent chairs near the bookcases. This made the seating area wider than the usual, but left room for a walk way. Now I'm trying to break the rules I set, and have moved the sofa several feet closer to the bookshelves. The seating area becomes more intimate. The walk way is yes, a little tighter but when it's just me who will be there most of the time, I don't really care. Behind the sofa I've moved the entry cabinet - which doubles as a desk to the back wall. For nights that I have guests, I can set it up as a dry bar and hide all of the desky things within. I don't have a great photo of the sofa yet, but I will share soon when I have all the elements well set and styled. 

ARTWORK

Image: LaurenLCaron Instagram

Image: LaurenLCaron Instagram

I love my artwork and gallery walls, but for this new design, I want to keep the artwork to a minimum. I think having the walls a little more clear and open feeling will add to the relaxing mood. With that said, my mom is lending a few beautiful pieces for the apartment. We set this gorgeous Chinese silk tapestry on the back wall above the bar to be the major statement piece. It is the perfect place for this piece too, since it can't be in direct sunlight and that wall, never gets the sun. Other artwork we brought in are some lithographs of Roman ruins for the dining area and two mirrors. We may bring a few other small pieces, but that's about it. 

PAINT

Image: Lauren L Caron

Image: Lauren L Caron

I'm slightly adjusting the paint in one place to tie together the colors. We've decided to draw a color from the silk tapestry to paint within the book shelves. I love the dark interior shelves but I'm now thinking since we have 4 black dining chairs, and a rug with black in it, there's too much black for the space. So a muted yet airy gray green will look really nice as a backdrop, the color I chose is by Ben Moore it's called Paris Rain (how appropriate). 

BEDROOM

Image: Lauren L Caron | Union Adorn © 2016

Image: Lauren L Caron | Union Adorn © 2016

Image Source: Paris Perfect

Image Source: Paris Perfect

For the bedroom I was greatly inspired by the image above and wanted to evoke the same mood as closely as I could. The window and room layout are similar, although slightly smaller. Originally I moved my dresser to the wall opposite the bed, but it felt too tight so I ended up moving it back to the wall it was on for the past 5 years. I plan to have a table cloth made to cover the Saarinen table, I haven't figured out what textile yet, something with a pattern would be nice. 

Image: Lauren L Caron | Union Adorn © 2016

Image: Lauren L Caron | Union Adorn © 2016

Image: Lauren L Caron | Union Adorn © 2016

Image: Lauren L Caron | Union Adorn © 2016

reflection_ffwu

We purchased a new bed frame (a very inexpensive one for $59 from Amazon, I'll link it at the bottom) and this gorgeous headboard that I've had my eyes on for quite some time from Urban Outfitters. We brought in a few French-y accents like the sunburst for over the headboard and this gorgeous gilt frame mirror. Last but not least, I plan to add some decorative pillows to make the bed feel more finished. 

Image Source: Rue Mag

Image Source: Rue Mag

Margaux Headboard - Urban Outfitters

Sunburst Mirror (similar) - Wisteria

 

Bedframe - Amazon

Bedroom Wall Sconces (similar) - Lamps Plus

 

Thank you to those of you who have been sending us well wishes about our move. It's been long winded to say the least, and I'm sure some of you are sick of hearing about this 'move' which doesn't seem like it will ever end. Believe me, I feel you! Check in soon for more updates because things are actually moving forward.  I plan to photograph the living room soon of the apartment updates, and in the next few weeks I'll be in Seattle, where I plan to accomplish a lot of decorating in that home. I'm excited to see how all of our stuff will look in the new place!

A 1942 Paris Apartment Left Untouched is Discovered: How Incredible?!

SPACES, VINTAGELauren Caron3 Comments

Paris Apartment - Image Source: Bello Blog I'm curious to find out why until now this story hasn't been revealed but . . . Back in 2010 a Parisian apartment on the Right Bank, near the Opéra Garnier, left unoccupied since 1942 was discovered.

Paris Apartment - Image Source: Bello Blog

Paris Apartment - Image Source: Bello Blog

 

Paris Apartment - Image Source: Bello Blog

It was owned by a socialite, actress, Madame de Florian who fled to the South of France during World War II and left everything behind. For years she continued to pay her rent and unfortunately never returned. It was until after she passed away at 91, did someone reenter the apartment.

 

Over 70 years later, an Auctioneer entered to evaluate the estate. Olivier Choppin- Janvry made the discovery, "There was a smell of old dust."

 

Paris Apartment - Image Source: Bello Blog

 

He discovered a stuffed ostrich, a Mickey Mouse toy dating from before the war amongst other taxidermy pieces. Which was a sign of affluence to have in the home.

Paris Apartment - Image Source: Bello Blog

Another discovery, perhaps even more interesting to some, they found a painting by Giovanni Boldini. Madame de Florian herself, was the subject who turned out to be the artist's former muse. The expert found a card with a scribbled love note from Boldini, the painting was sold for €2.1 million, which was a world record for the artist.

Paris Apartment - Image Source: Bello Blog

The rest of the apartment and it's components are being left undisturbed. They're privately owned by the estate and not open to the public. Other than the fact that this gem of a story is an amazing fairy tale come true, I'm in love with the idea that it will continue to be left a time capsule until the estate decides to do differently. One can only hope that someday it will be on view at a museum and not separated to be sold for individuals. This is just another example of why Paris is so fantastic and romantic. An apartment in New York would NEVER be left untouched, even if someone continued to pay rent. Swoon. . .

 

Thanks for reading.

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Thank you to the Bello Blog for supplying us with this wonderful story and images. .

SPACES | I Have Wall Envy

SPACESLauren CaronComment

First things first. I'd love to completely redo my kitchen and turn it into my dream kitchen but my bank account has made it clear that such a thing can not happen. So I'm counting my pennies and figuring out how I can change the hardware, add shelves, and some dramatic paper. In the future I'll update the counters and add a dishwasher. Then I'll hopefully solve the issue of the ill fitting refrigerator.

In trolling the internet a few months ago I came across this beautiful kitchen papered with the map of Paris. Just before this discovery, we had bought a large multi sheet print of the map for our wedding. But after seeing this kitchen, I decided that this would be the way to utilize the prints. Much like the apartment in Jean-Luc Godard's Breathless or Á Bout de Souffle, which I loved from the moment I first saw it. Seriously though, how chic is this kitchen? I know I'm not the only one with wall envy. You really can't go wrong with a map of Paris. I'm also loving other executions shown below.

Thanks for reading . . . my best, Lauren.

A new look for Dior

Lauren Caron3 Comments

With all of the drama going on with the house of Dior lately, I thought I would finally post this image that I took over the holidays of the flagship store on 57th street.  The store reopened on December 10th after a major renovation by Peter Marino.

The architect aimed to bring the spirit of the Parisian flagship on Avenue Montaigne to New York with a store inspired by the residential feel of a Parisian hotel, with stock ranging from the luxurious clothing to Christian Dior jewellery and accessories.- Fashionolia.com

Although the interiors are trés chic My favorite addition to this renovation however has to be the larger than life, flourescent outlined, new look model from the famous 1947 collection.  What a great use of vertical space and branding!

While of course I do not agree with Galliano's 'tangent' and violent remarks, it's not my place to speak upon the subject.  But I do hope that the Dior brand's reputation will not be tainted after this whole incident.  It would be extremely sad if the reputation as one of the most important couturiers of the twentieth century that Christian Dior built were to be ruined in one night.

His very first collection which launched in 1947, where he introduced a collection featuring rounded shoulders, cinched waists and full skirts.  The American pressed dubbed this collection the "New Look" which celebrated ultra-femininity in women's fashion.   I'm sure many can agree that this collection changed women's fashion forever.

Lastly, I was extremely fortunate in 2009 to have been given the opportunity through my school to visit the Dior couture showroom in the Parisian Flagship.  Here are a few photos from my visit.

Source:Christian Dior (1905–1957) | Thematic Essay | Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History | The Metropolitan Museum of Art