clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

10 Decor Takeaways From an Antiques Dealers' Hideaway

New, 2 comments

One of the many reasons touring the home of an antiques aficionado is such a thrill for magazine editors is that there is a certain delight in a home that follows a "more is more is not enough" paradigm, particularly when its a scavenger hunt for 19th-century French clocks or chairs upholstered in tiger-stripe silk velvet. It's like Hoarders for rich people or iSpy for the über cultured. Every corner in "anti-minimalist" spaces is stuffed with items that cost more than your annual paycheck and, heavens to betsy, it is something even more beautiful than it is outrageous. Arch Digest published a peek inside the Paris apartment of Old-World—no thanks, midcentury modern—antiques dealers Sylvain Lévy-Alban and Charlie Garnett, who've dressed the 18th-century space in "a seigneurial style" that "revels in the stratified splendor associated with grand connoisseurs of days gone by." Here now, 10 lessons gleaned from the interiors of Lévy-Alban and Garnett's abode; in other words, "how to wash your home in a golden aura of velvet-upholstered affluence."

10. Now, really, is a Parisian salon really a Parisian salon if the walls aren't "patchworked in an 18th-century damask," like they are above?

9. We've all had that quandary about what to do with a blank wall. Take a card from the hand of decorator Jacques Garcia and hang that Gobelins tapestry made for Louis XIV you have lying around.

8. Alternatives: 17th- and 18th-century European paintings, highlighted by a suite of buolle (that usually means inlaid tortoise shell and brass or gold) furnishings "made for Germany's Schloss Karlsruhe." (That's an 18th-century castle, in case you were wondering.)

7. Not falling in love with any exorbitant headboard for the master? Perhaps use two embroidered headboard pieces side-by-side, as seen above.

6. Speaking of bedrooms, a lot of so-called decor rules can be totally ignored if it means you have a place to put your antique upholstered chair (awkwardly tucked behind the nightstand) or creamy yellow bedside table (roughly 10 inches taller than the bed).

5. For the library (above, at left): have tiger-stripe carpeting and a matching tiger-stripe chair and an antique Roman console and wall-to-wall faux mahogany.

4. Now let's talk dining rooms. Nothing gets the appetite revved like Chinese painted-silk panels commissioned around 1760 by Duc de Duras, particularly when "showcased against silver-leaf wallpaper."

3. A chandelier, of course, is a must. Theirs is a Sicilian antique.

2. It's OK to go faux: the bamboo cabinet in their dining room is actually a modern copy of a 19th-century English original.

1. Oh, yeah, tables and chairs and stuff. Settle for nothing less than a 1940s Italian mirrored table offset with circa-1780 Piedmontese chairs—done up in Lelièvre velvet, of course.

· An Antiques Dealer's Old-World Paris Apartment [Architectural Digest]