Saturday, February 5, 2011

Opposites Attack

Miner's cabin, Alexandra Champalimaud

One of the driving forces in my design aesthetic is the idea of opposites.  Think sparkling crystal girandoles atop burled rootwood tables, refined French fauteuil chairs upholstered in African antelope hides and very crude neolithic Chinese pottery resting on highly carved 19th century English center get the idea.  Of course, this is a concept I play with when thinking about the cabin.

When it comes to the exterior, I'm generally drawn to a traditional rustic style with exposed logs, stone walls, etc...  After all, this is supposed to be a place to get away, something casual and relaxed.  But, what if we mixed things up a bit.

You've arrived at the cabin and the exterior looks something like Alexandra Champalimaud's miner's cabin above, or perhaps like one of the structures below....

Once inside, the mood is completely different.
Oscar de la Renta's home

Yellow drawing room by Nancy Lancaster and John Fowler, c. 1957
Ralph Lauren, Rhinelander Mansion, New York
Ralph Lauren, Chicago
I know these spaces may not seem casual, but with the right elements like a roaring fire, dim lighting and a cocktail in hand, they can be as relaxing as any other weekend retreat.  "Roughing it" in the country doesn't mean that you can't do it in style.  The English have their manor homes, the Italians have their villas and the Swiss have their chalets...I want my cabin to have a little bit of all of those all rolled into one.

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