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Tuesday, April 27, 2010

My new living room

Thank you all who placed orders, made phone calls, moved furniture, rearranged furniture, selected a new paint colour when it looked like the bottom of a swimming pool,gave gifts, took photos and made pillows etc. I could have not done this without you. sincerely, John

Bronze sofa from JD Madison.

Chinese alter table with table lamps from Maison Inc.

lacquered boxes from Bedford Brown.

Greek key armless settee and wood framed chair covered in black and white fabric from Pollack from The Consignment Gallery.

Round black glass and steel side table from EWF Modern.

John Derrian,Fornasetti plates from Cielo Home.

Christopher Marley insect art from St.Maine

Pillows made by Hexafoo and my mom.

textiles from Clarence House, Glant, Ralph Lauren, Brentano and Pollack.

Photography by Corey Shelton.

I love my home.

Monday, April 26, 2010

the craftiness of being art.

The Arts and Crafts Movement was an international design movement that originated in Britain and flourished between 1880 and 1910. It was instigated by the artist and writer William Morris (1834–1896) in the 1860s and was inspired by the writings of John Ruskin (1819–1900). It influenced architecture, domestic design and the decorative arts, using simple forms and a medieval style of decoration. It advocated truth to materials, traditional craftsmanship and economic reform.
The Arts and Crafts Movement started as a search for authentic design and decoration and a reaction against the styles that had developed out of machine-production.

Arts and Crafts objects were simple in form, without superfluous decoration, often showing the way they were put together. They followed the idea of "truth to material", preserving and emphasizing the qualities of the materials used. They often had patterns inspired by British flora and fauna and drew on the vernacular, or domestic, traditions of the British countryside. Several designer-makers set up workshops in rural areas and revived old techniques. They were influenced by the Gothic Revival (1830–1880) and were interested in all things medieval, using bold forms and strong colors based on medieval designs. They believed in the moral purpose of art. Truth to material, structure and function had also been advocated by A.W.N. Pugin (1812–1852), a leading exponent of the Gothic Revival.[3]

The Arts and Crafts style was in part a reaction against the style of many of the things shown in the Great Exhibition of 1851, which were ornate, artificial and ignored the qualities of the materials used. The art historian Nikolaus Pevsner has said that exhibits in the Great Exhibition showed "ignorance of that basic need in creating patterns, the integrity of the surface" and "vulgarity in detail".[12] Design reform began with the organisers of the Exhibition itself, Henry Cole (1808–1882), Owen Jones (1809–1874), Matthew Digby Wyatt (1820–1877) and Richard Redgrave (1804–1888). Jones, for example, declared that "Ornament ... must be secondary to the thing decorated", that there must be "fitness in the ornament to the thing ornamented", and that wallpapers and carpets must have no patterns "suggestive of anything but a level or plain". These ideas were taken up by William Morris. Where a fabric or wallpaper in the Great Exhibition might be decorated in a natural motif made to look as real as possible, a William Morris wallpaper, like the Artichoke design illustrated above, would use a flat and simplified natural motif. In order to express the beauty inherent in craft, some products were deliberately left slightly unfinished, resulting in a certain rustic and robust effect.

By the end of the nineteenth century, Arts and Crafts ideals had affected the design and manufacture of all the decorative arts in Britain.

as copied from wikipedia.



Tuesday, April 20, 2010

The Strength of confident Blue.

The passion of this life is something that keeps me strong. I was reminded by a dear friend this morning of how strong I really am. Not the strength one might see parading around in the Olympic arenas. But my strength is in the quality of my choices, my character, my values,my integrity as a businessman and as a designer and my ability as a parent and a friend. I may never be a superhero zooming in from outer space on a silver surfboard saving the world from imploding from within. But I know that my passion for this life and what it brings is strong. I was reflecting on some of the things in this life that I love beside my family, my friends, design and riding my bicycle.
One of the other passions that I have is my garden. The weather has been very nice for the last few days to actually work in my yard. It has been a long time(almost 3 years) that I was physically able to do what was required in my yard to keep it together.
The blooms late as they may be are beginning to burst forth with vivid colour. One colour in particular is a favourite in my yard. I am reminded every year of a wonderful poem by Robert Francis as my yard is reborn, as I am reborn.

As this is a blog about interior design, may I just add. Many believe that all blues must match in their home. I think this poem may show you a different thought. So take strength in your passion. be confident with your choices.

Sincerely, John


Her flowers were exclusive blue.
No other color scheme would do.

Better than God she could reject
Being a gardener more select.

Blue, blue it was against the green
With nothing not blue sown or seen.

Yet secretly she half-confessed
With blue she was not wholly blessed.

All blue, she found, do not agree.
Blue riots in variety.

Purist-perfectionist at heart.
Her vision flew beyond her art--

Beyond her art, her touch, her power
To teach one blue to each blue flower.

Monday, April 19, 2010

my living room

The other day the dark teal cut velvet pillows for my home were finally completed. I am having a professional photographer take photos of my livingroom soon. It will be exciting to have this done.

Friday, April 9, 2010

wonderful memories are like perennials. They keep growing back.

Today, I got a phone call from my friend, Mary. She wanted to find out how I was doing. I had to let her know that in February of 2010, I ended up back in the hospital in the emergency room. I came out two weeks later, after surviving yet another near death experience. This time I had a blocked intestine. It was twisted like a garden hose. I was reminded of the lovely garden party that her and her husband, peter had hosted last summer. I wrote the blog featured below. For photos Please go to the original blog in July 2009.
It is a wonderful spring afternoon. I wish you all a wonderful weekend. All is well.The most beautiful flower is one that is grown in adversity. I am a perennial...

Welcome life.
take care,

Wednesday, July 22, 2009
white night

My dear friend and outstanding interior designer, Mary Roberts invited me to her home for a quiet evening with a few of our friends.During my year and 1/2 struggle surviving stage 3 colorectal cancer, Mary was there like a devoted mother. She came to visit me ever so often to check up on me. She and I would have wonderful chats.The encouragement she gave throughout this time truly gave strength in my horrible situation.
She was also a devoted friend to my friend and employer, the late Wayne Martin. The founder of Wayne Martin Inc,the premier designer's showroom in Portland, Oregon.
I remember when Mary and her husband Peter lived in the garden apartment in his building downtown, he would always rave about her wonderful dinners that she would prepare and bring up to him. The first time that I had gotten a hint of what white could do to an interior was when Wayne had asked me to return her casserole dish.

Her home is filled full of beautiful objects and furniture covered in various tones of white. benches covered in Fortuny, ottomans in simple white cotton, a french armchair in a subtle tone on tone stripe. The walls were a very pale grey almost white. She had antique botanicals in simple gold frames above the fireplace.

As anyone knows that has read my blog before I am all about colour, stripes and graphic patterns. That night I fell in love with white for the first time. These photos that I have included are not her home and do not do it justice. You will have to imagine the true beauty that is her home.
It wasn't the perfect amount of light that created the warmth in her white rooms. It was the warmth of her graciousness and hospitality that gave each room that depth of colour. The Vivid colour that flowed through her home was the enchantment of the evening, the conversations that were had by our mutual friends and of course the pale summery colours that we wore in our clothes.
It was a truly a beautiful evening spent with enduring friends.
thank you Mary for sharing the beauty that is your heart and your home.

love, john
Posted by john thompson at 6:30 AM