Flower Magazine

MAR-APR 2019

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.

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piece is still grounded in history. It adds a wonderful value for clients, and their story becomes part of its provenance." Although Whittaker admits having a preference for antiques, she doesn't limit her choices. "Even though those things are nearly impossible to replicate, we are seeing some wonderful new things coming out of High Point," she says. "There are so many antique forms resurfacing in design, and the furniture and accessories market is exploding." Just as Whittaker likes to refresh antiques with new fabrics, she often tweaks new pieces to give her client that one-of-a-kind look. "There's so much customization in design now, it's almost expected," she says. "There's nothing better than finding a discontinued paper or fabric and reprinting it in a new color." The designer's approach to color is part of what makes her spaces inimitable. "Color is the thread that carries the eye from room to room," Whittaker says. "Sometimes you can look for it in the beginning of a project, but sometimes it doesn't reveal itself until you are halfway through the planning stages." A Florida native, Whittaker has always been drawn to tropical colors and botanical prints. For other inspiration, she looks to fabrics, art, and the hand-painted wallpapers she's so fond of. "Scenic papers from Gracie and de Gournay set up a palette so well. Their details lead us down so many beautiful paths," she says. "Sometimes you find your lead color in the smallest place—a leaf or flower or the feathers on a bird." Using that cue, Whittaker splashes the color on walls, upholstery, and accessories, layering textures and introducing complementary tones along the way. Still, she says, it doesn't matter how colorful, layered, or carefully planned a space is. "For a house to be a home, it has to be happy." PHOTOS BY MAX KIM-BEE (LEFT) AND ERIC PIASECKI (RIGHT) BELOW: A de Gournay wallpaper brings the English countryside to an Upper East Side entry hall. Silk lampshades, along with the trim on the 1950s settee, introduce a pop of burgundy. The checked floor (statuary honed marble in Blue de Savoie) is a classic choice. OPPOSITE: A custom-colored Bennison fabric adorns the walls in the master bedroom of a New York apartment. "The delicate pattern on the walls contrasts the larger pattern on the canopy," Whittaker says. 74 | M A R C H /A P R I L 2 0 1 9 ASHLEY'S NEW YORK MUSTS The designer divides her time between her home in Millbrook, New York, and her office on Manhattan's Upper East Side. Here's where you can find her in the city: DINING Lunch: When she's craving a burger and cottage fries, Whittaker says J.G. Melon is a can't-miss. She frequents the location a couple of blocks from her office. Dinner: For Whittaker, the Cajun chicken dish at Le Bilboquet is a winner. Just be sure to make a reservation. FAVORITE HOTEL FOR A COCKTAIL For after-work refreshments, Whittaker heads to Bemelmans at The Carlyle. Named for the illustrator of the Madeline children's books, the Art Deco bar is the only surviving public space that showcases his large-scale murals. GO-TO FLORIST For events big or small—or just a cheery bouquet, she uses Connie Plaissay at Plaza Flowers. Whittaker's favorite blooms are anemones. POP-IN SHOP At the Upper East Side shop KRB, Whittaker likes the evolving selection of antique and vintage furniture and new home accessories from the oh-so-chic owner and curator Kate Rheinstein Brodsky. For more information, see Sources, page 76

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