Showing posts with label Melissa Rufty. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Melissa Rufty. Show all posts

Thursday, September 16, 2010

What's Under Your Stairs?

I bet many of you that have a stairway in your house, under utilize the space below it.
But before I get to that, let's look at one of the most charming seating elements: The Banquette.

Banquette at my favorite French restaurant La Grenouille

Who of us has not gone to a restaurant, especially the ladies, and not wanted to claim the banquette? Seated against the wall, with a view of the entire room, you just kind of feel grand. Even the humble booth at the diner, is preferred seating because it's cozy.

Banquette at a restaurant

The space under the stairs just calls out for a banquette. Or you ou could just shove a couch or a jam settee under the stairs.

Couch under the stairs

But it just doesn't make it, does it? A banquette looks much more finished, elegant, and glam.

Tobi Farley

Banquettes have been widely used in many other cultures, in place of couches as we know them in our part of the world. Morocco is a good example. For many of us the optimal floor plan does not involve shoving furniture up against the walls.

Banquette in Morocco

We tend to like to float furniture. However there might be some little corner that a banquette might add a little extra something to the room.

My friend Tim Pope uses this simple banquette in his living room
See more of his fabulous New York apartment HERE

Melissa Rufty, a very talented New Orleans designer HERE, is the master of using the banquette.

Melissa Rufty

Especially when she tucks them under the stairs.

Melissa Rufty holds court under the stairs

Paired with the perfect small tables, she creates a seating area that is useful and popular.
She tells Mimi Read in House Beautiful: "When we have a party, it starts out collecting coats and purses, but it ends up collecting the late-nighters. It's where we hold court."

Melissa Rufty
Do you see the perfect Lucite table?

The banquette used in the odd unused place in the living room is a really smart thing to add.

Arnold Scassi

It offers glam looking additional seating and a great styling opportunity.

All the old school master decorators used the banquette as a staple. I am so happy see its return. Many of you may already have a banquette in the kitchen dining area, but I think you should consider it for under the stairs, or for that unused corner in your living or family room.

If you are handy, or have a handy husband, you can custom build one HERE

Or you can use modular furniture. Ballard actually sells some good looking pieces that would be fabulous under the stairs.


You also could use a couple of benches in an L-shape and pile on the throw pillows.

Trunks as benches!
Not very elegant
But it could work for young decorators just starting out

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Melissa Rufty And My Ikat Pillows

I love Melissa Rufty's work. She elevates the traditional with her own expressive use of color and fabrics and wallpaper.

Melissa Rufty uses Ikat pillows

I was doing some photo research for a post on here HERE.

Melissa Rufty has a terrific editorial featuring her home, in the October 2010 issue of House Beautiful. And while I was gathering images I saw these Ikat pillows, and had an OMG moment.

Visual Vamp living room at the very very beginning
Check out the Ikat pillows!

I purchased these pillows on layaway at perch. long before I worked there, and long before I knew who the fabulous Melissa Rufty is.

I've moved those Ikat pillows around alot

Melissa stops in perch., and we like her so much. The last time she came by, we were all squealing like school girls over Sandra Bullock shopping on Magazine Street.

Visual Vamp living room now
So much has changed! But I still have those Ikat pillows!

So much has changed for me in the last couple of years. I'm back at work in the design world, and loving every minute of it. I've met so many wonderful people because of blogging and working at perch. And I still have those first Ikat pillows I bought!

Melissa Rufty in October 2010 issue of House Beautiful
She changed the pillows!