September 17, 2014


 Definition: a style or technique that is characterized by extreme spareness and simplicity

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Since the Reagan era, 'conspicuous consumption' has ruled interiors in America. That "we-have-more-than-you-do" look has persisted through the latest trend of overpriced plastic'y, 70's retro-glam crap.
 The new trend-setters couldn't care less about Trump-ish prodigality as it's ALL about self-expression, comfort and individuality.

M  I  N  I  M  A  L  I  S  M 

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(Source: Axel Vervoordt)
Vervoordt does minimalism like no other - with soul and depth.
Soft curtains, hard surfaces and the wooden chairs thrown in for warmth.  Boom, there it is!

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(Source: Elle Decor)
A minimalist space with vintage mid-century pieces feels warmer than you'd expect, thanks to the raw stucco and natural woods.

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(Source: Designrulz)
Craycray, ok?
There's such sophistication in these details that they don't need to be covered up by mouldings or superfluous furniture.

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(Source: Erpicum and Partners)
Off-da-chain with that view, riiight??
The clear Philippe Starck Eros chairs are perfect as they don't create any visual interruptions... 

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(Source: Designrulz)
You don't always get to pick the style of your house, but you can pick what you do with it. By not overshadowing the architecture and flooring, the warmth and details are complimented by the few simple furnishings.  

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(Source: Jennifer Post)
This isn't true minimalism - but it's definitely a minimalist approach.
 It's simplicity is  its beauty.   

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(Source: Axel Vervoordt)
These clean-lined contemporary pieces juxtaposed with a 17th century building creates artistic tension between the modern and the ancient.

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(Source: Govaertamp Vanhoutte Architecten)
The no-boast kitchen!
No schmaltzy cabinets, no crazy marble, no coffin-sized range hood, no commercial appliances, just the natural light and a blurring of the lines between the indoors and outdoors. 

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(Source: Andree Putman)
A formal French apartment dials the grandeur down by painting the boiserie paneling white and using only what's absolutely necessary.
 Solid colored textiles create a contemporary, calm feeling.

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(Source: Atelier Bruno Erpicum)
In an amazing space like this you'd expect some Oprah dollars to be thrown around, right?  
This interior doesn't draw your attention from the architecture - it balances it, harmoniously, quietly.

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(Source: Govaertamp Vanhoutte Architecten)
I loves me a big white room! 
The U-shaped sectional and two Aalto chairs are simply perfect.

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(Source: Ong & Ong)
A desk and a chair, what else do you need for a home office, 
Tartan plaid wallpaper? Persian carpets?

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(Source: AD)
DAMN that's hot!!!!!
Or, perhaps should we add damask wallpaper and a leopard carpet runner?

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(Source: Fearon Hay Architects)
A glass pavilion with views to die for... unobscured by chazerai 

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(Source: Pinterest)
Lean, clean, food preparing machine...
Just look how sophisticated lighting makes this space glow.

B  E  D  R  O  O  M  S   &   B  A  T  H  R  O  O  M  S

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(Source: Fearon Hay Architects)
See what your missing when you install all those colonial-style windows with crazy OTT curtains?

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(Source: Copper House II Studio)
A modest country cottage strips away all the expected 'country propaganda' creating a restful and authentic space.

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(Source: Joseph Dirand)
Lose the precious hardware, luxurious finishes and elaborate stones; get up-to-date with unpolished stone,  raw plaster and inconspicuous hardware - create a natural environment for bathing not a Vegas experience.

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(Source: Designrulz)
No whipped up canopy bed or expensive furniture emulating some royal bedchamber in the 18th century...just purity of form in the most personal room in the house.

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(Source: Belgian Bed and Breakfast)
Simple, inexpensive, serviceable and yet sophisticated!

T  H  E     N  E  W     M  I  N  I  M  A  L  I  S  M

Historically, minimalism was always about modern houses with modern furniture, a true revolt from centuries of decoration. 
The newest minimalism includes the occasional antique piece or ethnic textile as an art object, which brings a historical reference to an often too frigid space.

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(Source: AD)
A large pre-war apartment banishes the fringes, velvets and tapestries in favor of clean-lined, modern furnishings combined with mis-matched antique mirrors which add charm and patina.

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(Source: Marie Claire Maison)
A grandly-scaled Georgian room blows off the 'period' look by kicking the antiques to the curb and introducing 21st century contemporary art and furnishings. 
Note: Historic rooms don't need to be decorated in the period in which they were built!

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(Source: Thomas Jayne)
Amazing contemporary art and the finest American antiques are deftly commingled to create a serenely spare space.

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(Source: Dinder House)
The size of this room would traditionally demand heavy, over scaled, 'serious' furnishings; but here the multi-colored Eames chairs with the crazy armoire and the Victorian mirror all look like a happily blended, modern mish-mosh of minimalism.

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(Source: Marie Claire Maison)
At the seaside, this single whale vertebra makes a much bolder, more contemporary statement than a heaving amount of nautical bibelot piled on each surface.
Less is more....

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(Source: Freshome)
Use only what you need, superfluous decorations are passé!
Minimalism usually makes one think of white with gray and a touch of black - but not here, the blues and lavenders kick it up!

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(Source: Architectural Record)
Shut The Front Door!
Can't even....

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(Source: AD)
Who says country can't be minimalistic?
LOVE LOVE LOVE how edited this space is.

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(Source: Habitually Chic)
Remember the definition of minimalism? 
"Marked by extreme spareness and simplicity"
This is it!

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(Source: Axel Vervoordt)
A single piece from many periods creates an interesting collage of style. The secret here is: Authentic, pure and not much more.  

S   C   H   M   I   N   I   M   A   L   I   S   T
(Schmaltzy minimalists)

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So close - and yet so far....
By swapping these dining chairs for some clean-lined, or solid color ones this would be a great room, but those orange and gold  leopard repro French chairs look totally ridiculous, completely ruining a cool room!  
(Look at the chair seats, they're like Jiffy-Pop, all rounded up...whaddup wit dat?)

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Typical middle-aged suburban modernism...
(balancing minimalism with a furniture salesman's advice) 

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Minimalism goes SoCal...
Back are the days of footmen - to push in those 500lb chairs behind each guest.

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Scale is the problem here; the delicate contemporary furnishings are lost in a huge 18th century-style room. 

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You having a partayy in your bedroom?
What's up with all the seating (and no tables) it looks like a Bauhaus exhibit.

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Is there no gravity in the room? 
Everything's floating aimlessly about in the space...

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If you wanna play the minimalist game you gotta have the right pieces. This looks like a temporary set-up with the detritus from another home...
(beds in front of windows almost always look goofy)

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Eclectic .... maybe, but not minimalist...

You Can Do It I'm Here To Help!

August 25, 2014



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Bohemian Chic is a non-conformist, free-spirited expression of an individuals personal style. It loathes 'obvious consumption' and interiors created to impress.

  Bohemian Chic interiors were epitomized in the art-filled Parisian home of Gertrude Stein and Alice Toklas
The uber-wealthy lezzie duo hosted renegade artists and writers at their salons, all of whom shared a passion for intellect, creativity and Alice's weed brownies. Meanwhile, Paris' nouveau riche flashed about town dining on caviar and champagne - ad nauseam....

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Alice B. Toklas and Gertrude Stein in their drawing room surrounded by cubist, fauvist and expressionist artworks. 

Sixty years later, the rebelious daughter of French Count, Alain de la Falais, and 'muse' of Yves Saint Laurent, Loulou de la Falaise, hosted the  jet-set  in her cluttered, un-decorated Paris apartment - which was more focused on great conversations and comfort than pretense.
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Loulou Falaise mix-matched apartment in Paris

Fast forward forty-five years to Iris Apfel snatching the front pages from formulaic designers with her bohemian non-conformist style, expressing blatant disregard for 'blending in.'  
Instead, choosing to surround herself with eccentric pieces she's collected - not ones to impress the arrivistes. 
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Apfel's eclectic hodgepodge apartment in NYC

This aesthetic has always been considered 'eccentric,' and still is to the bourgeois, but the jokes on the detractor, not the occupant...

2 1 st.   C E N T U R Y   B O H E M I A N

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(Source: Isabella de Borchgrave)
In this multi-colored, mis-matched space, there's no over-tweaked 'scheme' only ethnic textiles and bright accents which make this room feel alive. The plain white walls allow the color more freedom.

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(Source: Valhalla Blog)
A few hours at the Flea Market and Boom!
This place is crazy good, it feels clean and soft, like you wanna just fall into bed or curl up with a book.

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(Source: Homeadore)
This persons art and books bring them comfort.
All of their treasures obfuscate the fact that the room in a dump, but the fun colors and eclectic art pieces make it feel rich.

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(Source: Belgian designer, Lionel Jadot)
Instead of the pretentious "Alpine ski-lodge schtick" these guys decided to make the place cozy and user-friendly. The clever mish-mosh of furniture and accessories creates a welcoming look without usurping the view.

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(Source: Lagattasultetto)
Got an old bathroom and no money? No worries mate!
Slap a bold color up, arrange all your granny's old pictures on the walls and you'll knock it out of the park. 
Lesson: Don't spend money on something that's not worth it!

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(Source: John Robshaw)
Mr. Boheme himself, Robshaw surrounds himself with art and textiles from his global travels creating the look of a well-lived life, not a schmancy-pants decorated look.

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(Source: Designrulz)
This suburban kitchen expresses the occupants tastes with a myriad of baubles and mid-century modern - all displayed with restraint.
A little more stuff and it'll be filed under clutter.

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(Source: Pinterest)
Get some colorful pillows, coupla funky old rugs and colorful lanterns and soon you'll be actin' a foo, smokin' some killa, drinkin' some milla...

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(Source: Marjorie Kouras)
The cozy feeling is from the 'collected' pieces - all of which create a personalized feeling.

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(Source: Muriel Brandolini)
'Asymmetrical' and 'catty-corner' are all bad words within the interior designers vernacular - but not in the Bohemian one. 
I love the lighter feel, using articulated upholstery with luxurious fabrics is old-fashioned, but elegant.

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(Source: William Frawley)
A beautiful example of "self-expression." 
The warm, masculine feeling of time-worn furniture used with collections of art and accessories feels orderly because it's carefully placed, creating calm - not chaos.

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(Source: Adelene Keeler Smith)
A free spirit pervades this room; the goofy, out-of-place elegance of the chandelier and upholstered bed juxtaposed with the milk-crate tables and vintage dresses hanging on the walls. 
This screams "it's the stuff I like, so fuck off!"

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(Source: Brazilian designer, Fabrizio Rollo)
Some people are pack-rats and others are incurable collectors; try being the latter, not the former. 
Although this room has a touch of 'Sanford & Sons' it's very much an expression of the designer/occupants love of furniture and decorations. 

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(Source: Brazilian designer, Fabrizio Rollo)
By culling through his possessions and using all blue items in one room it creates a less random feel, and still an un-decorated look. 

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(Source: Marie Claire Maison)
Funky wall painting and kooky yard-sale-finds are all coordinated with one happy palette in this fun retro-mix. 

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(Source: Fabienne Collombel)
What if you're renting a house for the season somewhere and the patio is hideous?
Haul your ass to the local Pier-1 and spend a few hundred dollars and you'll love using your zhuzhed up patio.
Lesson: Stay away from 'themes' and 'cutesy' (e.g.: all items with matching fish designs, or pastels - which looks feminine)  

L E A N E R   C L E A N E R   B O H E M I A N

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(Source: Marie Claire Maison)
Bohemian chic doesn't need to be cluttered with mementos, it's just not about adhering to the taste for ostentation. 
This insane porch has the view-of-all-views and yet they have chosen a few comfy things instead of Ralph Lauren'ing it to death. 

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(Source: Marie Claire Maison)
Table for five, no chairs matching please.
A small European cottage with no budget knocks it out of the park with color, courage and self-esteem! 

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(Source: The Stock Blog)
I'm loving this quasi-edited urban space with art and books's so personal, you 'get' who lives here, not who their decorator is...

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(Source: Hill)
Bohemian isn't a 'period' or a specific aesthetic...
Here, Swedish chairs, an Irish console, an Arts and Crafts table and a bunch of other items from many periods are mixed into a stylish ensemble. Nothing over-coordinated or twee.   

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(Source: Tony Espuch)
Cement floors are totally reactionary to all the schmaltzy tiles and marbles being used these days. Throw in an unfinished tub and some great sculpture, and whaddya have? Bo-chic!

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(Source: Elle Decor)
A personal collection of furniture and accessories is brought together in this casually edited room. Nothing is precious, just cool.

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(Source: Federicode Vera)
How can $3,000 worth of stuff look so amazing?

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(Source: Maryra)
Kick around the flea markets in your area (links at bottom of page), find some fab-funky-finds and bring them home and use them sparingly! 

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(Source: Martyn Lawrence-Bullard)
The home of one of Americas hottest interior designers. 
His own home reflects his desire to live with an eclectic mish-mosh of things that he's found on his junkets, cozy and inviting.

F A U X - H E M I A N   R O O M S

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This, believe it or not, is a contemporary space... 
It looks like Whistlers Mother should be sitting in there...
Wayyy too pretentious in its desire to look Bohemian. 

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Cute is never a good look, unless of course, your doing a nursery.
This just looks dumb, a small corner of an all-American porch with everything faux-Morrocan... feh!

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I've never thought about something looking pretentious and  spooky, but this looks like a setting for an Anne Rice novel. 

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Poor thing, was aiming for "The Sheik of Araby" and ended up with Disney's Aladdin...

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I got a migraine just trying to figure out how to make fun of this hot mess...

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A perfect example of Faux-hemian
The art, vintage furniture and accessories are all expensive collectors pieces. Therefore, their attempt to look 'bohemian' is a bust as you just can't pull that off when everything's expensive; some things needs to be humble to lower the tone and create atmosphere, they've created 'art-mosphere.'   

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Who thought this was a good idea??
It's just wayyy too cute; hopefully no straight dude lives here....

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Clearly, the drug problems aren't over in Mexico...
Eso es un lio caliente loco!

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Is this a ho-house in Lima Peru?
Everything's too color coordinated, too new and too store-bought looking... 

Click on these pink links to flea-markets in the USA, France and England














This blog-post is about the Bohemian aesthetic, and my next blog-post will be about the Minimalist aesthetic. 
Both are revolts against ostentation.

You Can Do It, I'm Here to Help!