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04 August 2009

Diva Decor

While thumbing through old magazines in pursuit of MC, sometimes a room just stops me in my tracks.

Such is the music room of Lily Pons. Pale blue taffeta upholstery, deep blue wallpaper embellished with exotic birds and trees, and, the boldest stroke of all, black carpeting.

Could there be a more romantic, glamorous room to showcase the vocal stylings of this prima donna, who was the Metropolitan Opera's top coloratura for over two decades? Click here to hear her signature piece, The Bell Song, from Lackme.

Pons by Steichen for Vanity Fair, 1933

Top photo from Art & Décoration, March 1952

12 comments:

Blue said...

Amazing, isn't it, the power of these black and white photos? I would have loved to have seen this room - blue and black. Lutyens' black walls at Folly Farm come to mind.

The Peak of Chic said...

Gorgeous! I recently found other images of her apartment, but I believe it was c. 1930s or 40s? Can't remember where I saw the photos, and if the scheme was the same.

home before dark said...

The room is beautiful. Interesting about the carpet. What color is the ceiling? What caught my real attention was the photograph. The luscious black and white tones and the texture of the fur, the luster of the satin, the dramatic x-cross of the dress. Sigh!

Emily Evans Eerdmans said...

Blue, Folly Farm - yes! I also think of Tom Britt's sitting room that had cobalt blue silk slipper chairs and black-stained herringbone wood floors and black walls - which I believe was influenced by Rose Cumming....

Jennifer,
I would love to know about those photos you found. I am unclear as to whether this room is in Paris or New York (where she lived for many years) and think it could possibly have already been an archival photograph in the 1950s! There is something very 20s about the room, I think.

Home, and the gloves! which are also crossed....

Shandell's said...

Look's very much like my Grandma's room in England, she did not have black carpet, but sheepskin rugs scattered all over. I am in love with the sofa.

Emily Evans Eerdmans said...

Susan, What a glam grandmother you had. That reminds me of the cover of WoI a few months ago - there were a few sheepskin rugs dotted about and they looked like puffs of clouds...very dreamy

Shandell's said...

Yes the living room looked like puffs of cloud, exactly.

little augury said...

Gorgeous post with a perfect pitch (but I thought I already sent this comment,sorry if I repeat myself, Hum? it was late.
la

Blue said...

Article about MC in WoI March 1985. Faded and muddly photos as that 80s ink hasn't aged very well

Blue said...

PS MC article also WoI May 1986 - the old girl was popular in the 80s.

Emily Evans Eerdmans said...

Fantastic, Blue - I will double-check and see if I have these....

Toby Worthington said...

Now EEE, you KNOW that Miss Pons had a maid who attended ONLY to cleaning the black carpet, didn't you?