I was delighted to find Christina Strutt's wonderful Cabbages and Roses online. Her shops in London feature clothing and home furnishings made in England and Wales. Victoria readers might remember Christina's name in some of the wonderful stories we reported from Great Britain. In her recent book, At Home with Country, she came across the pond to photograph both the New York City Studio of Tricia Foley (Trish to all who know and love her) and her picture perfect Long Island home.
Christina's fabrics remind one of the casual elegance of an English garden. And the photographs in the book as well as the wares for sale on the web site are a testament to the specialness of English interiors. When I looked at the fabrics, I was inspired to do some redecorating of my own--if only a few new pillows for sofas and beds. I really do have a passion for pillows. (I guess I could be investing in worse things!) You can really change the look and feel of a room, especially a bedroom with fresh fabrics.
Closer to home--when I'm in my New York digs--is the distinctive stock of Kristin Clotilde. But for those of you who want to experience it online, you're in for a treat. The home page is pure fun for shoppers. You'll see how this former Ralph Lauren model is spending her time these days. By the way, she and her twins once modeled for us in Victoria. KC is a firm believer in dresses! Remember those? The garments you can twirl in? Her stock in trade has a 50's feel--an Anne Fogarty appeal.
It's on my to do list to drive over to Larchmont and actually visit the shop. In the Thursday New York Times there's an article on how French women age beautifully. One of the things mentioned is that they are more dress-oriented than we are in America. I have to admit that dresses are not exactly a major item in my closet. But I'm very tempted to make a change to skirts and dresses this coming season.
That article has some good hints, including those from Leslie Caron. Leslie gave me her advice years ago--cold showers! And what I've observed myself of her dressing is well-tailored clothes in rich, deep colors and wonderful accessories. That scarf is really a big thing among French women as is beautiful costume jewelry--or the real thing is pocket books permit. I was in Barneys New York this week before going to my dentist. (I accuse him of being in a disaster zone for my pocket book.) I saw wonderful large-beaded necklaces with luxurious ribbon ties by Lanvin. Now that's a way to spruce up some of the beads in the bottom of the jewelry box.
And for a pure fun summer moment, spend some time on Lexington Company's site. These folks come out of Sweden, but have a real feel for what an All-American summer can be like. I feel myself on my knees digging for clams on Long Island Sound like I did when I was a kid.
Refresh and enjoy!