Flower Magazine

SEP-OCT 2018

Browse "flower" to learn techniques from established and up-and-coming designers, be inspired by the floral decor of weddings, galas, and flower and garden shows, and infuse your lifestyle with chic floral fashion and home decor.

Issue link: http://digital.flowermag.com/i/1013720

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Page 29 of 91

THE GARDENS OF BUNNY MELLON: COURTESY OF SOTHEBY'S. INSPIRED DESIGN: IVAN TERESTCHENKO 28 | S E P T E M B E R / O C T O B E R 2 0 1 8 IN BLOOM I books NLIKE MOST DECORATING books, which focus on one designer, one style, or even one kind of house, Inspired Design (Vendome, 2018) takes in the full scope of design over the last century and starts naming names. Many of the usual suspects are here—Sister Parish, David Hicks, Mark Hampton—but Boles also looks farther afield. Armchair observers of the decorating world will be interested in the list, and even in its organization, which is split into chapters like "The Big 6," "The Grandees," "The English Masters," "The Influencers," and "A Century of Women." In an effort to add a democratic dose to this otherwise highly subjective enterprise, Boles includes nominations by editors of numerous shelter magazines. Their answers, at the front of the book, are entertaining and illuminating, like those of Whitney Robinson of Elle Decor, who writes, "Bunny Williams is the Meryl Streep of the interior design world." Indeed, one of the pleasures of Inspired Design's framework is the ability to draw lines between someone like Bunny Williams and someone like Elsie de Wolfe (1865–1950). De Wolfe, whom Boles calls perhaps the first modern professional designer, used to say, "I believe in plenty of optimism and white paint"—a mantra that sounds about as fresh and true today as it did more than a century ago. Inspired Design: THE 100 MOST IMPORTANT INTERIOR DESIGNERS OF THE PAST 100 YEARS U UNNY MELLON WAS AN HEIRESS, an art collector, and an antiques expert, but she was happiest wield- ing a pair of garden clippers. Even as a child, Mellon was drawn to landscape design, sketching a garden shed and, later as a teen, drawing schemes for the redesign of her prep school grounds. "Gardening is a way of thinking," Mellon used to say, and in The Gardens of Bunny Mellon (Vendome, 2018), readers have a chance to get inside her head. Though steeped in scholarship, Mellon's gardens convey an ease and optimism that feel purely visceral, whether at Oak Spring, her beloved farm in Virginia, a town house in New York City, a country estate in France, or the White House Rose Garden. Benches invite contemplation; café tables entice guests to linger in conversation; sight lines lead the eye to the horizon; unexpected bedfellows in garden beds surprise and delight. Sir Peter Crane, president of the Oak Spring Garden Foundation, summarized Mellon's approach to landscape design as one where "nothing should be noticed," meaning outdoor spaces should feel natural and intuitive. (Crane wryly notes that to achieve that, of course, means that "no detail should be ignored.") Mellon's ingenious, often underappreciated body of work should be noticed, and this book is a valuable contribution to that end. The Gardens of Bunny Mellon B

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