Ga Ga for Florentine Furniture

It has been a dreary, rainy (tropical storm-like) June. This time of year I usually walk around on my break at work, taking in the sights, admiring the Victorian houses in the area – one of them, my new favorite, freshly painted in a light grey with turquoise shutters and trim; but I digress. Not feeling so spring-y out lately, I decided I needed to do something to perk up the mood in the form of a little “retail” therapy. A new antique co-op popped up on Main Street very recently, and I thought it’d make a great lunch hour retreat.

I had only been in the shop once before but already much of the inventory had changed (i.e. sold) and more great finds put in their place. My favorite area was the front of the shop where there is some painted furniture, Parisian inspired vanity accessories and some gorgeous beaded and needlepoint handbags. I tried not to linger too long so that I could get back to work, but I still wanted to make a quick loop of the booths and I am so glad I did because that was how I stumbled upon my newest treasure.

Sitting in the front of the store but tucked behind a standing screen so as to not be too obvious to passersby was a trio of vintage Florentine nesting tables with one extra table of the smallest, square table – all 4 being sold as a set. Circa 1960, each table was in the Italian signature white and gold with ornate scroll and floral carvings detailing the top tray and long, lean, Queen Anne legs bowing out. Very Paris apartment and absolutely gorgeous!

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Funnily enough, I had just been drooling over a Florentine table featured in an issue of Romantic Country magazine and day dreaming about how gorgeous it would look in my apartment. Not only beautiful, but practical, with the three tables nesting, each one fitting perfectly under one another, they are a great space saver to be pulled out and moved around as needed.

I picture a stack of vintage books and a flowery coffee cup with mismatched saucer on the tallest table. Do you go ga-ga for Florentine furniture? What would you place on your table?

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Shabby Rococo Chic

Decorating in Shabby Rococo Chic? I am definitely a girly girl at heart – I may wear a lot of black, but there is usually something pink on me at all times, too.  In my love of shopping, vintage and home décor everything, I’ve been reading a lot of Rachel Ashwell books lately to see how she’s mastered her craft from thrifting to decorating and designing. She coined the décor term “shabby chic”, infamous for its pale pinks, blues and greens (think, painted furniture) paired with crisp clean whites (especially in slipcovered sofas). While I love everything about her style, I, personally, still need a little sparkle, a little brightness, a little bling in my space. While I love the traditionalism of certain décor elements, like a curvy Queen Anne leg, a French Provincial dresser and ice cream color palettes, I also love the ornate scroll detailing of a gorgeous gold, oversized mirror and those decadent glass dripping with crystals.   Think Betsey Johnson (the ultimate Queen of Black & Pink – with a lot of blinged out gold) meets Rachel Ashwell. Pair them together, and it’s definitely my design dream come true. I believe the best fitting term for this style is Rococo. You see Rococo in the architectural details of Victorian décor as well as in the glitz and glamour of Hollywood Regency and even in the color palette of Shabby Chic.

          The word Rococo itself comes from the French; rocaille, or stone, and coquilles, or shell. Not surprisingly, shells are one of the signature decorations in this style’s architectural details and designs.  With its 18th century origins, it is also known as late Baroque, encapsulating the curvaceous lines of Louis XV and the beginning of the architectural fluted posts of Louis XVI. It is famous for its mixture of pastels with gold, beautifully decadent painted murals, and curvaceous S lines in all its furniture and ornamentation. I think it is so elegant, so inspiring and fun all at once. For me, when I think of Paris Glam, I think of Rococo.

Check out some of  the Rococo style home décor goods in my Etsy store. From Mirrors to clocks, wallpaper, fabric  and more.

                Do you have a favorite decorating style? Are you drawn to any particular artifacts when you’re out treasure hunting? Share it with me here.  Happy decorating and happy thrifting!