Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Living Room Redux: Part 1

Welcome to our first post here at Knickerbocker Style! To give you a little introduction to our aesthetic I’d like to share a recent redecoration project involving a large living room wall display.

Several months ago I arranged this wall as a cluttered yet symmetrically ordered display of prints, mirrors, and accessories that was a perfect backdrop to our festive holiday decorations. Now that the decorations are long packed away I feel a rethinking of the space is in order. The arrangement was centered on an elegant hand colored bird print flanked by a pair of elaborate 1920’s gilt Chinoiserie mirrors. I really love these pieces together and plan to work the new wall treatment around these elements.

The baronial moose antlers crowning the center were a wonderful conversation piece over the holidays but without the tree in front of it they feel too large in scale to relate to the smaller pieces surrounding them. The small framed prints along the top include another hand colored print as well as a charming eagle fragment from an antique Fraktur. The different frames added color and interest to the composition, but now I feel a simpler look is in order, and these little gems will easily work in several other locations.

A favorite part of this wall treatment is the imposing pair of hand carved cherub corbels, and I’m certainly going to find a way to work these beauties into the new design. I’ve always been a fan of wall brackets as they add an instant architectural dimension to any space. The large vintage Chinese famille rose porcelain ginger jars are just the right size and scale for these grand brackets.

The gold frames bookending the arrangement I gilt in 23 karat gold using the traditional water gilding techniques, very interesting but time consuming process for a future post! The frames have been used to display a charcoal sketch and a block print from my art school days. Just next to these are found an 18th century Angelica Kauffman print opposite an unusual mid-century surrealist print. Finally the arrangement is finished off with three long prints depicting the cities of Venice, Augsburg, and Munich. These family heirlooms are wonderfully detailed with all major landmarks numbered and labeled, but the best design aspect of these is the long horizontal shape making them the perfect fit for over a doorway or as part of a larger composition such as this. At least one of these prints will certainly make a re-appearance in the redesign. Hope you enjoyed our introduction and be sure to check back soon to see how we re-imagine this space!
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