Pink Peonies on Alice Lane: The Reveal
It had been a about 14 months since we presented Rachel Parcell with her closet design so we were pretty excited that installation day was finally here. The space was beautiful, built-in, mirrored, and the perfect sophisticated shade of pink. All of the little details we had drafted had come to life. The beautiful white shelving with mirrored backs were the perfect backdrop to house such an exquisite collection of fashion. The little gold knobs were all perfectly placed on each drawer of her custom, free-standing island.
I have to admit, I got caught up in it all. I felt a little like I was walking into a closet for SJP in an episode of Sex In The City. I was surrounded by couture labels, bold fashion like neon purses paired with patterned jackets and heels for days!
That genius shoe room idea did not go to waste on Rachel Parcell; she had the shoes to back it up. Her collection is exquisite, and so is the closet! The leopard print carpet was the hero of the room. If you are trying to decide if you should put a patterned carpet in a special place, like a stair runner, media room, or closet… the answer is yes. It’s like wearing a great pair of designer shoes, they’ll carry the rest of the outfit without trying too hard.
We brought in loads of accessories, fashion books, and trays for the install. I think accessorizing can, and should, be useful. Trays are brilliant for grouping alike items such as perfume bottles and sunglasses so for the island top we used a tray full of clutches, a large white ginger jar filled with white blossoms, and fashion books and jewelry as accessories.
We styled Rachel’s desk top with a Mary McDonald lamp in the faintest shade of pink. I could picture Rachel sitting in the evening with the lamp on writing about her latest adventures or editing photos. We left a simple glass tray on the desktop to use as a catch-all. We loaded it up with Rachel’s things that were already floating on her desk – giving items a common place to rest makes them seem more purposeful and less random.
We couldn’t resist using pink peonies on her desk. We love to use flowers – fresh or artificial – because they give the room life! In structured spaces filled with straight lines and symmetry it’s nice to get the organic shapes of something natural to loosen things up.
A great trick for accessorizing shelves is to face a large object toward you pushed to the back of the shelf (artwork works great); it attracts the eye and then you can start to play with the objects in front. In this case we used shopping bags, fashion books, designer shoe boxes, and purses. It’s also good to group common things together – it might be a color scheme, like black and white, or common shapes like perfume bottles.
In case you were wondering, this room smells like Jo Malone. Rachel had English Pear and Freesia burning on the island and it was exactly right.
When we left the closet looked like a boutique loaded with fashion week favorites. We were so pleased with the detail, quality, and function of it all, but the most important part? Rachel was thrilled!
(Photo on left by Kathryn Brookshire Brown)
What’s a girl to do after a day like that? I’ll tell you. I went home, took off my shoes and started to reorganize my shoe shelves. I put my prettiest pairs at eye level and I felt better already.
[photos by Weston Colton unless noted otherwise]