Whether you are going home for the holidays or staying in with a few friends, here is a visual repast to tuck into.
The work of interior designer Maureen Footer is something to savor - sumptuous, sensuous and substantive (no empty carbs here). When I first saw her blue and white tented room at Kip's Bay in 2005, it was an instant coup de foudre and I have been following her work closely ever since.
Upon meeting Maureen, one is struck by her elegance and the kind of impeccable manners that harken back to the days of starched monogrammed napkins and lunches at La Côte Basque. But what makes her endlessly fascinating in my books are her warmth and lively intelligence which are readily apparent in her rooms. Just see for yourself....
Maureen mixes the best of today and yesterday to smashing effect
Maureen was kind enough to let me grill her and share some of the secrets of la vie Footer. I hope you enjoy her thoughtful answers as much as I did.
Color and light create
With a new project, where do you start? Do you build
I start with
You have a deep appreciation and understanding of craftsmanship and design history - was
I have always been fascinated by interior space and how easily it can be transformed. As a girl I used to lie in bed and muse on my bedroom’s reflected ceiling plan and imagine living in my room upside down! I also continually rearranged every room in my mo
As an investment banker at
When you return to
Still, my old neighborhood of
a canapé chez Galerie Anne-Marie Monin
I often start with a stroll on
Doyou have a favorite period style?
For years my answer would be
The era was aes
Louis XV design was characterized by
Furniture responded to
Maureen's Migneon commode - one of her favorite pieces in her own collection (if unfairly asked to choose!)
And yet suddenly I am drawn to
Art and design in
the inlaid marble floor at the Pantheon
When I was in Rome this summer visiting friends at
Do you have a favorite historical house?
Madame de Pompadour’s Chateau de Champs-sur-Marne.
It is light, carefree, elegant, beautifully scaled and not at all pompous. And it has some of
Who are your style/design icons?
Are you surprised if I say Madame de Pompadour? Also Madame de Montespan for her famous sumptuous looks combined with her celebrated diction and wit.
More recent icons are Vanessa Bell, Virginia Woolf’s sister, for her joyous, all-encompassing approach to life and interiors.
Vanessa Bell painted by Duncan Grant
I was also smitten when I saw photos of Jackie Kennedy’s
I researched George Stacey a few years ago for a project I was working on and was so impressed with his use of enveloping color, his Titian-like addition of strong colors to create drama, his love of painted furniture, gilded wood, and his erudite selection of French and Italian furniture. If I were to write a book, it might have to be on
You also worked at Vogue. Do you see a connection between fashion and interior design?
I think interiors are like clo
You're always beautifully dressed - is
Yves Saint Laurent—vintage and some of
There are of course
And finally - am dying to know - you are one of
Life is like design. The best things come when you can find that quiet interior space to edit, to distill to
I am always trying to find those moments---in
(Maureen also doesn't own a television which no doubt helps keep the mind uncluttered.)
I thought I would end the piece with Maureen's logo - called an herisson (translating to "hedgehog"). It was taken from an 18th century French typeface and used to close paragraphs, chapters, etc.