Design

An Ode to Dorothy Draper

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Upon entering the Greenbrier, America’s historic resort in White Sulphur Springs, WV, you are immediately overwhelmed — in a good way. Rich in history, color and pattern, your eye can’t help but bounce from room to room, unable to soak in all of the details fast enough. During my first visit, I found myself wandering the halls and rooms for hours, entranced by interior designer Dorothy Draper‘s designs.

“At the Greenbrier she [Dorothy Draper] concentrated on the three basic ingredients she thought essential to any decorating job: masses of beautiful color, a sense of balance and scale, and an awareness and love of smart accessories,” says Robert Conte.

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Mission accomplished, Dorothy.

Mixing colors and patterns I never would have thought to do on my own, I find myself turning to images of Dorothy’s Greenbrier designs for inspiration. In my favorite room, the Victorian Writing Room, bright reds and deep greens are paired alongside punchy floral fabrics in perfect harmony.

Here are a few pieces you could implement to capture Dorothy’s ‘three basic ingredients’ found at the Greenbrier, but with a modern twist.

Living room image: Cup of Jo. Rug: Doris Leslie Blau. Table: Target. Vase: Etsy. Pillow: Houzz.

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Floor-to-Ceiling Bookshelves

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I have a wishlist (yes, an actual physical list on a folded sheet of lined notebook paper) of design features I dream of having in my future home. One thing at the top of that list is built-in floor-to-ceiling bookshelves.

They instantly make a room feel homey, comfortable and inviting. Their height and amount of wall real estate they take up also make the space feel like your own little library. Not to mention they are a great conversation starter. I currently have two large bookshelves in my apartment and whenever friends come over, that’s the first area they gravitate towards. They browse the book titles, make comments about books they’ve also read and ask questions about the small knick-knacks that break up the stacks.

So, until the day I have my very own built-in bookshelves, I’ll just continue to collect books that will one day be organized floor-to-ceiling.

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Design Idea: Display Your Stationary

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I am the biggest sucker when it comes to stationary. I can’t leave an Anthropologie or a Target without buying a notebook or a card set or SOMETHING. There are so many pretty styles out there, it almost seems like a disservice to the charming artwork and clever sayings on the cards to keep them hidden away in a desk drawer. So, when I moved into my studio, I decided I would display it all.

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A Pop of Color

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I’m drawn to neutral colors when it comes to interior spaces. I feel neutrals help to make a space feel more open, and less cluttered. But, I also love unexpected pops of color. It adds a fun element to the space, and helps to bring life to a room without over doing it.

Here are some spaces that utilize the pop of color perfectly.

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