Monday, December 3, 2012

Post Time: Equestrian Design at High Point

For all our horse lovers out there, we have good news for you from High Point, North Carolina. There is a specter haunting design and the specter is equestrian. We are seeing it in art, fashion and interior design. Cultural motifs ebb and flow, bubbling up from the effluvial  social, economic, political and  media shores. As an undercurrent, trend is a fascinating. It is not a whimsical branding show derived from powerful operators. In a transient world, trends move fast, but are they shallow, enduring, reliable...predictable? Trends are zeitgeist; the spirit of an age or a time or... a reaction.
Equestrian motifs continue to crop up all over the show rooms. The first hint was in fashion, as designers from all over the world were wearing riding boots, leggings and well tailored jackets.

In fact, the fall 2012 collections of Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger and Burberry lines are all sporting equestrian themes. 

Ralph Lauren's leather, plaid and boot combo hits all the right chords for this look. As I mentioned in my last post, an alfresco breeze is picking up speed as a common denominator. Equestrian style denotes nature, fresh air, power, and discipline. I think we are all longing for those qualities. I know I am!

Burberry Fall 2012

In case you missed my last post, Hermes orange is all over design town fanning the flames of equestrian motifs. 

We ran into Julie Browning Bova at Hickory Chair, who has a stunning equestrian inspired line at Stanford furniture and chatted with her in front of a video camera--hope it hits the cutting room floor. This is my adorable client (left) posing with Julie. I'm camera shy.

Julie was a great person to interview on equestrian revival, if you could call it that. She's the real deal. As a rider, Mother of four riding children and a designer, Julie fuses her life passion with decor. Any time you take a theme and over do, there is a cloying sense of too much. There is a way to employ a classic style. Julie's classic equestrian elements can combine to create a pleasing, balanced and comfortable room.

The English country house look never gets old. But a punchy fresh fabric on a traditional piece keeps it fun. 

This ottoman sports the classic horse bit. Has Gucci ever discontinued their classic loafer? 

What are the elements of great English style? Here is the list: Lanterns, large analogue clocks, horse paintings, leather, nailhead trim, black or dark trim, bits, stirrups, leather, and plaid. Julie's stirrup coffee table is a handsome addition to any room.

This needlepoint rug is not over doing it for me. In fact, it would look terrific layered under this coffee table.

The detail of the harness motif and the different blankets on all the horses makes this one a winner. Add an Hermes orange and brown border and you've hit the trifecta.
French Market Collection

This buggy bench reminds of us kinder gentler times. It would be a wonderful mudroom perch to pull off your wellies.
Van Thiel

Typography is still a mainstay in both art and furniture. We noticed as we shopped the showrooms, a nostalgia for the pre-digital age is permeating the scene.

Ralph Lauren has infinite variations on the equestrian motif. You can take it Brit, Western, or Indian. In his own dining room, an elegant chandelier is balanced against an informal collection of equine photographs and paintings that appear to have grown organically over time. 

There's a wonderful security and sense of continuity in these layered rooms.

The late and incredibly talented Naomi Leff, known for her spectacular retail spaces, notably the Ralph Lauren Rhinelander Mansion renovation, designed this striking iron and glass bit motif door with a curvy art deco flourish.

Our equestrian enthusiasts love, love, love the Dovecote Decor Saddle Chair

Don't forget to visit our online store
for some fun Holiday gift ideas!!

And a big Happy Birthday to my special girl!!

Posing beneath one of our favorite equestrian landmarks


  1. Does it ever go out of style? will email you this week or next from Beaune and sending you xxoo~

  2. I'm camera shy too. I never thought I was wild about equestrian but if the rooms you show belong to that genre, then maybe I could be!

  3. What fun!!! Love seeing all your horse-y finds!!

  4. Liz so many great images of this classic segment of the design world. Love the needlepoint rug!


  5. Liz-
    You never cease inspiring me! I love this post. Julie is a avery busy lady, and her work is beautiful.
    The ottoman and the rug stop me in my tracks.
    Thank you for sharing such beauty.
    Happy Tuesday.

  6. Not your average equestrian collection ~ your choices are more than a pleasant surprise! So nice to see such fine old pieces incorporated into beautiful settings ~ the buggy bench and THAT RUG! At first glance I thought it was an Hermes scarf!
    Happy Holidays!

  7. Hello there! I am really very interested in one thing, could you please share with us the place where you spent your childhood?


We love your comments and hope you will join the conversation! Please do not use this forum for advertising.