Tuesday, March 1, 2011

A Passion for Carolyne......

Back in 2001 my husband and I went to visit some dear friends in Birmingham. My friend Bimi left a copy of a new book she had received in her guest room.  It was At Home with Carolyne Roehm. She knew I would enjoy seeing it during our visit. That was a big mistake, because when handed a great design book it is very hard to get me to be social until I have studied every page and picture. Needless to say they did get my head out of the book for the rest of the weekend, but as soon as I arrived back home I immediately purchased my own copy! This became my “go to gift” for my friends that year. If I was forced to choose a favorite of her many books it would have to be this one. It is a wonderful blend of home d├ęcor, flowers and recipes. Or maybe it is because it introduced me to this fascinating artist.

Previously she had published A Passion for Flowers in 1997. Carolyne spent time working in the famed French Flower Shop, Moulie Savart. She has wonderful stories about her experience there. She certainly shows in this book what a talent she has for flower arranging.  This book has  250 gorgeous photographs and has been dubbed "the bible of floral design" and remains the gold standard for florists, brides, party planners and flower lovers alike.*

It was after A Passion for Parties was published that Carolyne came to ADAC (Atlanta Decorative Arts Center) to promote her books and speak about her fascinating life. She started out as a fashion design assistant working for the legendary Oscar de la Renta. She could easily have been a model rather than an assistant and is an extremely entertaining speaker. This she proved again last Thursday when she returned to ADAC to enchant a captive audience. She talked about her latest book A Passion for Interiors and told us about her three homes that are the focus of this beautiful book. Carolyne has nine dogs right now and you will find them in many of her photos. She told us of her two Westies that proceed to use a pair of “extremely” expensive antique console tables as chew toys. She said if they had been a husband or even her Mother that did the damage; they would have been long gone. But the Westies are still with her. This I can understand from having the divine Miss Priss, our Jack Russell, who in her youth enjoyed chewing on a convertible top, chain link fence and sheetrock! She has managed to digest most things she nibbled on. She is also sixteen years old and still with us!

I highly recommend any of Carolyne Roehm’s books and if the opportunity arises by all means go and hear her speak. She never disappoints! And yes that is one of the console eating dogs in the picture sharing the table where she autographed our books!
She is just one of many talented and creative people that have influenced my love of design. In the future I will share some others with you.
If you would like to read more about Carolyne, be sure and go to the below links:

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