I Like You, I Love You by Carissa Potter
$12.95 at ICA Store
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Photo by Marni Elyse Katz/StyleCarrot
Looking back at these little sprigs of lavender from the early spring, snipped from our Cape Cod garden.
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If you don’t have your own flower garden (or want to leave it intact), there’s always the local florist. If you’re down under, check out Flowers Across Sydney.
I profiled this Victorian home in the Waban village of Newton decorated by designer/blogger Robin M. Anderson in the September issue of Boston Common magazine. The article was one page, but I have plenty of room here to take you on a wider tour, with additional photos and links to some of the pieces Robin used (some of which are StyleCarrot partners). Photography by Sabrina Cole Quinn.
The 4,500-plus square-foot house belongs to Robin’s friends, who enlisted her help with furnishings in the foyer, formal dining room, and great room once Nancie Chamberlain and Laurel Laliberte of Chamberlain & Laliberte Design Associates had wrapped up renovations.
The family mainly uses the mud room, but visitors enter through this foyer. Robin chose a hand-turned wood pedestal table from Restoration Hardware to anchor the center of the space.
A Ben and Aja Blanc Half Moon Mirror with handspun silk, mohair, and wool fringe hangs over the refurbished fireplace. Candlesticks are from The Line.
Opposite, black and white photograph, “Mist Mounain 2” by Kate Schermerhorn hangs over West Elm burl console on a metal base with polished nickel finish. The atmospheric photo pictures a Costa Rican mountain top, which Robin jokes she chose in order to leave her mark, since she and her husband own a home in Costa Rica.
The formal dining room opens on the left of the entry. Robin designed around the Phillip Jeffries Rivets wallpaper which has actual silver rivets on the elephant manila hemp, and Heracleum II chandelier by Bertjan Pot for Moooi, both of which the homeowner had already chosen with Chamberlain & Laliberte. Robin aimed to keep the room light since it is a small space, infuse some glamour, and make sure it felt young and comfortable enough for kids could be included in meals there. “I wanted a throwback feel of old school dinner parties,” she says.
The antique mirror is a nod to original elements of a historic home. Robin used personal tidbits on the mantle including a family crest, a drawing of Canada that show where the homeowners are from, and an illustration of the original house that Robin commissioned from an Etsy artist based on an 1800s drawing from the town records department.
An Aero marble dining table from Restoration Hardware is surrounded by blue velvet upholstered Gage dining chairs from Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams. A Biddew Norie textile from Senegal framed in Lucite hangs above a Maxim Panel sideboard from RH Modern. Jonathan Adler pottery and sculptural brass Globo table lamp are fun accents.
The hand-knotted Serena & Lily Niles rug has a pattern that hides fallen food, which is useful with little kids. The custom roman shades are made from Eskayel fabric and the 1930s French Trolley bar cart is from RH Modern. Hanging on the back wall is “Namibian Landscape Dusk” limited edition photo by Australian artist Kara Rosenlund.
The family spends most of the time in the great room. The house originally ended at the header, but they added an addition onto the back, making it a much more family-friendly space. The RH Cloud sofa is upholstered in an indoor/outdoor Perennials textured linen weave. The “Mediterranean”seascape is by , LA based photographer Max Wanger and the cloud-like limited edition print “Dreams” by Miami-based Jonathan Brooks from Minted hangs above it. They painted the window trim black in this room to match the kitchen cabinetry.
Chamberlain & Laliberte designed the kitchen, but Robin found the leather and walnut Bacco by Omar De Biaggio counter stools from DWR, which is what prompted the homeowner, whose original inclination was to go more contemporary, to ask for help with the rest of the house. Robin knew that organic materials would warm up the room. The homeowner chose the Modern Agnes pendants with gold interiors by AERIN for Visual Comfort.
When the table that the homeowner originally ordered didn’t quite work, Robin found this one, the Crate & Barrel Monarch walnut dining table. “It’s very durable which is important since they eat all their meals here,” she says. The black Tucker chairs from Serena & Lily, an iteration of a classic Windsor, play off the black cabinetry and window frames. Robin framed Eskayel wallpaper to add playful pattern on either side of the window above the sideboard.
The addition has a cathedral ceiling with a skylight, complete the Beaux Arts style 72-inch Cannele chandelier in burnished brass from Restoration Hardware, which echoes the high round window. The Seville chair in camel leather from Room & Board is inspired by the iconic Barcelona chair designed by Mies van der Rohe. Although the homeowner isn’t a fan of color, Robin loves it, especially navy, so she snuck in some moody navy Eskayel pillows.
The homeowner loves everything Robin did. She says, “I wanted everything underdone, which I think is tough to do and still feel pulled together. Robin does it very well.”
Every year we plant tomatoes in our little raised garden behind our house in Cape Cod. We’re not exactly dedicated green thumbs, so results are mixed. We did well with grape tomatoes, as we often do, but the slightly larger tomatoes we planted were ravaged by some sort of animal. Chipmunks perhaps. Most of the herbs grew gorgeously, except the dill which was completely chewed up by an unsavory little creature.
In cooperation with Wayfair, I decided to bake a tomato tart to show off my harvest. The local farmers’ market provided supplemental ingredients. Namely, heirloom tomatoes.
A tomato tart looks best with an assortment of colors. I used red and yellow.
These are the tomatoes from my own garden, along with my basil and parsley. And that’s the kitty, wondering if those leaves are good enough to eat.
Step one, brown the onions. A good use for local sea salt, another farmers’ market purchase. My husband let me use his prize possession—his cast iron skillet. It worked really well.
I used herbed goat cheese knowing it would provide maximum flavor with minimal effort. The home gown basil and parsley were mainly for show, and a bit of texture.
I whisked one egg (laid by one of my brother-in-law’s chickens) with two percent milk to make an egg wash for the crust.
After unrolling the ($15!) puff pastry and pressing it into a buttered, nonstick shallow baking pan, I crumbled in the herbed goat cheese and added thin slices of cheddar. Any kind of cheese will work; we just happened to have cheddar. But no cheese grater, hence the slices.
Next I layered the delicious caramelized onions and sprinkled on more salt and pepper.
Then I sliced the gorgeous tomatoes and spread them across the top. First the yellows, then the reds. Then I threw on the cherry tomatoes, uncut, though next time I’d halve them, and sprinkled on the chopped fresh basil and parsley, and drizzled on some olive oil. Finally, into the oven for 15 minutes.
Here it is. Beautiful and delicious. Like, really, really delicious. It tasted as good the next day reheated too.
Tomato Tart-Making Tools
StyleCarrot partner Serena & Lily recently sent me a round jute rug to try out. I’m using the rug in my workspace in Cape Cod. It’s light and airy and the ample floor space was begging for adornment and texture. The Scandinavian meets beachy Cape vibe works perfectly.
I layered the jute rug over a stripey cotton dhurrie. (Serena & Lily has similar rug styles.) I like it over a larger floor covering, but you can also use it solo. It would look especially gorgeous over white painted floorboards I think.
I love how the concentric circles echo those of the painted targets on the tree trunk slices of my art installation above the sofa. They also pick up on the pattern of the pillow.
The abstract painting happens to be from Serena & Lily artist Ellen Levine Dodd. She’s based in the San Francisco area, but grew up in New England. I met her in Truro when she visited a couple of years ago, and have since had the pleasure of working with her. Her painting fills this big wall gorgeously.
Adding the Serena & Lily jute rug turned my workspace/lounge from purely functional to cozy. The natural fibers feel great underfoot.
Photos by Marni Elyse Katz/StyleCarrot