Mermaid Queen

I was quite charmed by Jennifer’s post last week on past Hermes windows.  In particular, this 1989 window, “In Praise of Silk,” bowled me over.  That grotto chair – divine!

The very same day my World of Interiors arrived and look!  Again!  Two!  This time Bill Sofield.  Fabulous.

I don’t know why they captured my fancy so completely.  I had posted this set, above, from George Cukor’s home featured in Architectural Digest, January, 1978.

And Roger Lussier’s Boston apartment from House & Garden, December, 1989.

Here you can see its saucy arm in the bottom corner of the image.

When I went on the hunt, however, they were more elusive than I had anticipated.  Ms. Weastler used them with great aplomb in the sleek setting above.  They are quite dramatic juxtaposed with the spare and linear marble fireplace.

No surprise, Amy Fine Collins came through just as a girl would hope.  A little lucite, a little animal print, and, yes, a gilded grotto chair.
There are a few available at 1st dibs right now, including the beauty above.  Seems odd that I would be as equally entranced with grotto chairs as I am with the killer klismos.  As I am just wishing and not buying I guess I don’t need to decide.  Curious.  Cash in hand, which would it be?  Heavens, I do hope there’s enough for both.
Kelly Wearstler’s work appears in Rooms to Inspire by Annie Kelly; photographs by Tim Street-Porter, who also deserves credit for the Gambrel room I posted in haste last Thursday.
Amy Fine Collins’s apartment was captured by Simon Upton; it originally appeared in Elle Decor, but can be instantly enjoyed in So Chic, edited by Margaret Russell.
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15 thoughts on “Mermaid Queen

  1. Last year we visited the Matisse Museum in Nice, and there was a chair just like that…and in several of his paintings as well. I think you would like them.

  2. I really like the armless grotto chair versions best, just enough glamour and gilt. The rugs Amy Fine Collins uses are also a treat to see. Perfect!

  3. The grotto chairs are enchanting, impossibly beautiful, but they are strictly for looking at, not sitting on.
    At least that was my reaction during the first encounter with the real thing.

  4. Mimi – I’m setting you up – luring you in with pretty things for two days then abandoning you for the rest of the week. Hope these will hold you over.

  5. Toby – I completely trust you and still feel quite fine with having one just to look at. You know if I had one now I’d have to encase it in lucite to keep the boys off of it. Three boys and a grotto chair equal disaster.

  6. I was going to say, you aren’t taking the easy way out even though it’s a school holiday. Stellar examples. I’m off to read your Spaces story.

  7. Loved the Spaces story. I never tire of reading people’s top picks. Fascinating to see which titles new and old always top the list.

  8. I had a pair of these- There are grotto chairs and grotto chairs Mine were huge Chippendale repros – Dolphin arms and big symetrical shell backs- Look in the “Gentleman and cabinetmakers…” to see this version of the grotto chair- the best

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