30 June 2010

please, please, mr. postman...

please mr. postman- could we arrange to have these never delivered on the same day ever again? m21 likes to savor life's sweet pleasures, so it's too much goodness for one day- especially on a day packed with client meetings, which we were late to because we had to quickly thumb through each issue!

better yet, margaret, newell, do you think we could arrange to have a payday publishing schedule for your publications? you know, on the 1st and the 15th? i, know, i know- you both want to be first on the newstands, but how about maison21 holds a coin toss for who gets top spot- ladies first, so you call it, peggy! heads or tails? ;-)

also, m21 wanted to bring the new designer registry over at elle decor to your attention- a great way to for clients to find interior designers (like moi!). it contains design contact information and portfolios, organized by regions, so it's a great tool to connect with a designer who works in a style you like, but close to home. m21 has nothin' against e-decoratin'- we've dabbled in it ourselves- but sometimes it's just nice to meet face-to-space, so to speak...

happy reading, and please, let's work on that scheduling thing, k?

26 June 2010

there oughtta be a law...

maybe there ought to be historical preservation laws for furniture as well as buildings. m21 felt like crying when saw this on craigslist recently:

can you see what it is underneath that grotesque paint job? and if the shabby but not chic faux finisher responsible for this hot mess threw the original hardware away, they deserve jail time.

mrs. draper is rolling in her grave over this one, i'm sure

24 June 2010

a sale for a very good cause!

the pretty lady sitting next to my handsome teddy-boy is molly, the founder of molly's mutts and meows, the rescue group from whom i adopted ted (ie, the people who saved him from the LA country animal shelter).

this saturday, molly and her gang of volunteers are having a yard sale in westchester, near LAX, with 100% of the proceeds going to animal rescue. for those of you in the LA area, why not do a little yard sale-ing for a good cause, to help our little friends with paws? i mean shopping and saving lives? does it get any better than that?

hope to see you there!

22 June 2010

careful, he might hear you... (tales of the junque whisperer)

careful, he might hear you...

not the bogeyman, or some other awful phantom, but rather we're speaking of maison21's inner junque whisperer™ (as in be careful what you wish for, because he's always listening and he makes you buy stuff you really don't need...)

long time readers of m21:dbns will know that maison21 has had a hankering for a claude lalanne sheep for like, ever... (you know, just like every other decorator on the planet). unfortunately though, the 5 figure price tag has stood in our way. heck, even a sheep "in the style of" lalanne is too prohibitively expensive for our recession budget (there is one on 1stdibs right now for mere $8,500). we even considered big ol' stuffed toy at one point, but backed out because it just wasn't quite the right look for the five hundred dollar price tag. so we kinda gave up.

but our inner junque whisperer™ didn't give up- he's always listening, 'member? and the fact is, he comes through more often than not (though his time table is unpredictable, at best). so lookee what we found this weekend:

yup, he found us a big ol' sheep "in the style of" lalanne (if you squint). and therein lies the problem... we have it, now what the heck do we do with it? it's massssive, for one thing- we were hoping for something that could double as ottoman or small bench, but this monster is 4 feet long and 3 feet tall! we just don't have the space in the atelier for him. normally, we'd just do what we do with any other find we can't resist, and offer him for sale in the marketplace, but this guy has a lame front leg that we believe just might be beyond dr. maison21 DFAVM's ability to fix (Doctor of Fake Animal Veterinary Medicine, if you're wondering); so finding a buyer who also has a degree in DFAVM but in an orthopedic specialty, might be difficult dontchathink? ;-) so our little lost lamb sits in our already crowded living room, while we contemplate his fate...

our inner junque whisperer™ was workin' overtime this weekend too- remember that fantabulous giant diamond table that tickled our fancy when we visited emmerson troop a few posts back?

well, IJW™ decided we needed a bejeweled table of our very own, and produced not just one, but three of these crazy mirrored acrylic numbers! not the same as the emmerson-troop table obviously, but still, how often do you see any table in the shape of a giant jewel? so we'll give IJW™ credit on this one... (and these are in the marketplace- no room at the inn!)

now if only our inner junque whisperer™ was perhaps an "inner lottery ticket whisperer" as well- maybe next time we could afford a real lalanne sheep- with 4 good legs, too!

21 June 2010

go ahead, make my day! (compliments always do)

m21 may not be able to cap an oil well, cure cancer or bring peace to the middle east, but it's nice to know that his chosen profession, superficial as it is, can make a small difference in people's lives.

i received the nicest, unsolicited email yesterday morning, which put me in the great mood for the day:

"I just wanted to say that I love my house.

I was thinking that this morning as I puttering around.

Thank you for making this place a home."

how nice is that? from the owner of the melrose hill bungalow, the photo of which (below) you've seen hanging out in my sidebar for the last year, with the promise of "more pictures to come" (it's on the "to do" list, swear). the sentiments are especially sweet considering the homeowner had never worked with a designer before, had a very modest budget, and quite frankly, early in the project was a bit skeptical of the whole process (there is a period after decisions are made, and orders placed, where nothing seems to happen- it's always a leap of faith before the pretty magic begins to unfold).

it's not saving the world, but making one person happy in their home ain't so bad, either... (make that making two people happy- it makes me happy when my clients are so pleased with the results of our collaboration that months and months later they tell me so, completely out of the blue. thanks, m., you made my day!)

18 June 2010

"mr. fraidycat, tear down that wall!" (with rap and showtunes!)

there has a been a thaw in the cold war.

we CAN all get along!

for those of you sweet enough to inquire (or bored enough to keep on reading) about the state of animal relations here at the atelier, things are progressing nicely. richard has come out from under the bed, and as of last night we even had a brief episode of "getting to know you" nose touching. of course, this was followed by a hiss 5 minutes later, but still, we are pleased with the state of détente between the two little beings, and foresee full diplomatic relations in the near future.

ted, getting to know his cousins, sam (in the back) and maria (the lil lady in the middle).

as for ted-a-licious, he is adapting very well, thank you. he is a snuggle bunny extraordinaire, and when on the bed with me, prefers to have the entire length of his body, from nose to tail, pressed up to my side. he also refuses to let me out of his sight, and i'm cool with that, so have been doing lots of work here around the atelier or going on ted-friendly errands- he's been through a lot of strange places in the last month, so i want him to know this time, it's forever and neither of us are going anywhere any time soon. he's made friends with the other kids in the neighborhood, and we are even going to attempt runyon canyon park again soon- maybe since teddyboy is a little more comfortable, the walk amongst all those other peeples and doggies won't be quite as scary.

m21 is a gay man "d'un certain age", so of course, we've been humming this showtune classic 'round the atelier for the last two weeks; but m21 doesn't want to ruin his ENORMOUS street cred with this admission, so he'll have y'all know he's also been singing a little hip hop too: "ted doggy- do-o-o-o-o-o-og" to the tune of snoop dog's "who am i (what's my name?)". ;-)

have a great weekend, kiddos- the three of us here at the atelier sure plan to!

17 June 2010

a horse of a different stripe (thanks, shelterpop!)

m21 just wanted to thank writer amy preiser, for remembering his love of zebras and including him in a piece on the very same animal for AOL's shelterpop blog (reprinted on ebay's insidesource blog as well).

thanks, shelterpop! now go check the article out!

16 June 2010


this crazy pop modern meets beidermeier pedestal sofa popped up as an ad on our maison21 facebook page, and it was love at first sight. m21 lives for quirky pieces that combine the best of two opposite worlds, in this case, fine biedermeier antiques and 60's pop modern styling, and this unique sofa charmed the pants off him immediately (normally, that takes a cocktail or two ;-).

we know nothing of the austrian company who manufactures this lovely item, gaisbauer furniture (their larger oeuvre seems to be more traditional biedermeier repros), or if gaisbauer even has representation for those of us living in the united states, but we thought we'd share anyway.


ps- if you visit gaisbauer's facebook page, you'll note the sofa has a contrasting patterned fabric on the back. ick. we had to change that in photoshop asap, so we could fully express our love. apologies for taking liberties with your product, mr. or ms gaisbauer furniture person.

14 June 2010

shopping on beverly blvd: emmerson troop

when we last visited beverly blvd, we took you to a fab store called orange; today, we visit their next door neighbor, emmerson-troop.

like orange, emmerson-troop has a selection of vintage treasures and a few edited items of their own design, but their store has a bit more of an organic, californa vibe- being a california boy, we love that. (it's also bit ironic, since william emmerson, the store's owner and designer, was born in london- i guess the california vibe is international!).

m21's inner drag queen LOVES these witty cigarette tables with giant diamonds as table tops (an emmerson-troop original, available in several finishes). we see one in a ladies bath, next to an chic, modern, free-standing tub...

love this pair of blanc de chine lamps with some great custom shades. this style of lamp is a favorite 'classique' for m21- we have several in the 'permanent collection' here at the atelier (one in our work area, originally was our grandmother's) and they occasionally pop up in our marketplace as well!

we love these multi-globe vintage chandeliers, of which ET has several on the sales floor. the top one is *perfect* for a residential project on our drawing board, should it ever progress to reality. if not, maybe it's perfect for the atelier, too- we love it that much!

a selection of chandeliers and sconces.

how chic are these henry moore lithograph triptychs? again, we want!

m21 is mad for the vintage metalwork of phillip and kelvin la verne, particularly their etched bronze chinoiserie pieces like this coffee table, the perfect blend of traditional and modern, brutal and refined, and functional yet decorative. the laverne's work was never mass produced (limited editions) so is the kind of timeless furniture that will always remain both fashionable and valuable.

a bit of what we consider the store's "california vibe", exemplified by these driftwood poofs and a screen of emmerson's own design.

TEL.: 323-653-9763 FAX: 323-653-5445
MON - SAT, 11:00AM - 6.00PM

09 June 2010

the name game (introducing 'ted')

a big thank you to everyone for all the great name suggestions! so many good ones, i wish i had a pack of puppies to name! oliver was by far and away the most popular suggestion, and i loved it for it's little orphan "oliver twist" connotations, but alas, it's also a popular name here in the 'hood, and with a couple other olivers running around, i didn't want little guy to suffer the indignity of being known as "oliver m" at the dog park; plus, as a child, yours truly was obsessed with "green acres" reruns on tv, so i also didn't want myself to suffer the indignity of calling out his name in lisa douglas's hungarian accent, "all-lee-vahr", as i knew i eventually would... :-)

naming him would have be so easy if he was a girl- he would have been "sister bertrille" in a heartbeat 'cause of those bat ears. c'mon, it's not just me who sees the resemblance, is it?

we literally tried dozens of names from the absurd (joey ramone) to the exotic (francois & juan carlos), and had a great time doing it, but knew in the end his name would reveal itself. and it did- as little guy was snuggled in the crook of my arm with his head laying on my chest, i remarked to him that it was like sleeping with a real life little teddy bear, and there it was, his name, revealed:


well, theodore actually, but i'd imagine i'll only call him by his full name when he's doing something bad, like peeing on the car door instead of hopping into the car (twice, now), and let's just not talk about him peeing in a client's kitchen today (yes, ted takes meetings, and in my defense, the client invited him, fully aware that his manners aren't that polished yet).

an instance where the use of "theodore" would be appropriate: "um, i'm a lapdog, not a hiking dog, and i absolutely *refuse* to take another step!" the other walkers along the trail at runyon canyon were highly amused at the man trying to lure his dog up the hill with liver treats...

so he's officially ted, as in my little teddy bear, tedders, teddums, teddy boy and all the other disgusting baby talk variations i can come up with. thanks again for all the fun suggestions- maybe we can do this again in a year or two if ted gets a little sister!

theodore may

06 June 2010

back to biznets (mostly)

maison21 must admit due to recent events, he's been ignoring his biznet somewhat (with sincere apologies to my clients, FYI). so this weekend, we got things back on track by putting in a call to our inner junque whisperer® to come out to help us with a current project. our IJW® obliged us by producing (amongst other things), a set of these fabulous hand-carved faux bois chairs for a client's dining room. they may be a little rough around the edges now, but once their finish is refreshed, and we add a fun and colorful modern fabric, they will be showstoppers- you'd never know we obtained them from a sketchy source. we guarantee they'll look like a million bucks, but at a significantly lower price tag! (side note- in our deep dark past we worked at a furniture showroom that sold a similar, if not identical chair, and we purchased FOUR for a third of the cost of what a single chair sold for waaaay back when- can't beat that!)

this is one of my favorite things about a design project- finding inexpensive, yet cool, old things and rehabbing them to complete chicness. these wrecks will look great- trust.

the quirky hand-carved faux bois detailing was what sent us over the moon when we saw these chairs. pretty darn unusual, and since several other elements of the room are being ordered straight from a catalog, it's important to have some standout vintage style happening.

we're using 3 of our faux-bois chairs around a saarinen style tulip table (to keep things feeling modern) and instead of the fourth chair, we are using an upholstered bench along a wall. space is tight in the open plan kitchen/dining area so a settee style bench is more versatile to squeeze in more than four guests when needed, and also an upholstered piece along the one small wall of the space visually looks a bit more finished than a single chair.

this photo is the original saarinen table, offered by knoll, but we'll probably use a reproduction version for budget reasons. hopefully NOT the ikea version- we have it in our own kitchen, and hate it. it's wobbly and if you even *look* at the laminate wrong, it peels off...

a snippet of our floor plan to give you an idea of the tight space we are working with. you can tell just from the floor plan that a banquette style bench works better then a single chair on the side of the table next to the wall.

to keep things feeling mixed up, above our modern table and the quirky faux bois chair/bench combo, we are hanging a big ol' french reproduction lantern from wisteria, a total bargain at @249.99. we first saw the lantern on brooke's blog way back when, and thought it was one of those "more dash than cash" items which can really help make a room sing, so we filed away it away for future reference (and when we say "sing", we mean sing on a budget- it's not so hard to make a room sing when money is no object!)
the bargain wisteria lantern- see it in action @velvet & linen. i think it's interesting how a contemporary antique reproduction can be used in a traditional way by brooke, and then used in a more modern way by moi. decorating is like cooking- you can give the exact same ingredients to 6 different chefs, and somehow each will turn out completely unique, yet equally tasty dishes!

last, though we spent a good portion of the weekend getting caught up on work, we of course spent lots of quality time with our new friend. many of you have written to ask how we are getting along (and to see if he has a name yet), and the answer is, we are getting along famously- he couldn't be a bigger love bug, and sadly outside of "good boy", he doesn't have a name yet. it will come, in time.

he-who-is-yet-to-be-named on our unmade bed, meaning richard is *under* same bed- he's still scared of the new guy...

what other blogger will show you pictures of himself in his jammies? after we went outside sunday morning, we crawled back into bed together, me to read, new guy to nap. he slept for almost an hour curled up against me, with his head on my shoulder. luckily my camera was on the nightstand so i could snap a self-portrait to immortalize the occasion, bed hair and all... i've been joking that i should name him 'tissue' because he's been so good at helping to dry my tears!