clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Decorator Nicole Gibbons on Setting a Table Inspired by Doris Duke and Her 'Magical Hawaiian Retreat,' Shangri La

Welcome to Setting the Table, wherein Curbed asks top design talent how they do just that. Know someone who elevates the humble task into the realm of the artful? Send a note.

Recently Nicole Gibbons, along with more than 30 other interior designers, descended upon the lavish Manhattan event venue Cipriani 42nd Street for the annual Lenox Hill Neighborhood Spring House Gala, paying tribute to this year's theme—high-society icons—through elaborated, carefully crafted table settings. Gibbons, who just founded Nicole Gibbons Studio and has long been the force behind the cult-obsession design blog So Haute, was inspired by the late, great American heiress and art collector Doris Duke; and in particular, Shangri La, the glamorous, secluded Honolulu retreat Duke spent nearly 60 years filling with Islamic art, artifacts, textiles, ceramics, and decorative objects from her travels throughout India, Egypt, Morocco, the Middle East, and the Far East.

Having visited Shangri-La, now a museum and cultural center, and witnessing these legendary finds in person, Gibbons was inspired by Duke's "beautiful, eclectic, adventurous, and a little bit irreverent" personality and aimed to translate "the exoticism of Shangri La" into a table setting: think blue ikat, "napkin jewels" by L'Objet, and tiny little salt-and-pepper shakers in the shape of pagodas. Above, a closer look.

· All Setting the Table posts [Curbed National]
· So Haute [official site]