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Monday, August 25, 2014


The September issue of Vanity Fair is out and to my delight, the 2014 International Best Dressed List is announced.   Under the category of Professionals, Natalie Massenet is listed.  She is the Founder and executive chairman of Net-a-Porter, the decadently stunning high end fashion website that I am addicted to.  Not only can you find the most sought after clothing, shoes, handbags, and accessories to purchase, but for me, it is the format and insightful information that I covet.

Ms. Massenet has been the talk of the fashion world since she launched the website in 2000.  She started in a small apartment in London with a handful of employees but her goal was to look big and aim big!   Now she has offices all over the world, employing over 3,000 people and is considered one of the most influential women in business today.

I wanted to write about Natalie for a few reasons.   First of all, she is smart and is an example of that old adage that, “Anything is Possible”.  Secondly, the art of fashion and interior design have a beautiful parallel and I admire both categories immensely.   Last but not least, Net-a-Porter is such an inspiring website to visit.  The editorial piece is really well done so you can read about travel, hotels, food and what to wear going to all of the a fore mentioned!  Along those lines, there is another venue that Natalie launched and that is Porter Magazine (print version).  If you haven’t read it you should and if you haven’t subscribed then do it!  Especially with fall creeping up on us, it is a valuable resource to refer to in order to see what is on trend for the upcoming season and beyond.

Ms. Massenet is quite a business women and she took something she loved and turned it into a thriving fashion power house.   Style and living with beautiful things around us makes feel better and enhances our lives by encouraging us to think creatively.

Thank you Net-a-Porter for the inspiration……… 

Natalie Massenet

Natalie Massenet Vanity Fair Professional Best Dressed

Gisele Bündchen on the cover of first Porter Magazine
Gisele Bündchen Porter Magazine

Gisele Bündchen Porter Magazine
Latest issue of Porter Magazine

The Edit the Net-a-Porter digital online magazine

"The Edit" is the Net-a-Porter Editorial Digital Online Magazine

Natalie visits with Christian Louboutin

Friday, August 8, 2014 much talent!

It seems as though I have decided that I must own a piece of furniture by Herve Van der Straeten.  I have found that in having a passion for design and for interesting collections by some of the most creative minds available today, you eventually will have to add a piece from this wildly gifted designer.  I was impressed to see that Mr. Van der Straeten started out as a jewelry designer and worked for YSL and Christian Lacroix.  I am sure in those early years where scale, proportion, beauty and being supremely modern were of the utmost of importance, the end result must have impacted his furniture and lighting design that he is so famous for today.  You must remember that he was ultimately designing jewelry for women, very finicky customers indeed!

He was born in 1965 and initially he studied engineering at Ecole des Beaux-Arts.  After his years of jewelry designing, he opened his own workshop in Paris.  Known today for his dedication to quality and the artful blend of materials, he keeps a careful eye on the production by staying intimately involved in the design fabrication.  I love that he feels he can put his beautiful signature on his furniture and lighting only if he can see and touch his work personally.  He doesn't take his designs out to other manufacturing houses…he wants to see his team work and he give his hand to it in his own workshop.

I found a Q&A that I thought was lovely on Huffington Post.  I hope you enjoy his philosophy on life and his glimpse into his past.  

Here you go:

There are many sources to buy his jewelry and furniture.  Of course 1stdibs has all his work available and Neiman Marcus carries his jewelry.  I like the presentation that Maison Gerard in New York does with Herve Van der Straeten work.  I think you will too! 

Herve Van der Straeten

Friday, August 1, 2014

The art of equine...

When I was in Big Sky Montana several years ago with a group of women, I was invited by one of the guests (who happens to be a respected art patron) to tour Deborah Butterfield’s studio and horse facility in Bozeman, Montana.   At the time, Deborah really didn't make a practice of inviting people to her riding arena and studio, however, because of my hostess, we received a full tour.  The time with Deborah and her husband John Buck was very memorable but I wish I knew then, what I know now, so I could have soaked in even more!   It is Deborah’s art form to honor the beauty of the equine form by way of found objects.  Her work starts with twigs, branches, metal and stone, sometimes together, sometimes not.  After the life size transformation unfolds revealing various graceful positions that only a horse can achieve and by Deborah’s sensuous eye, it then takes on another life.  Ms. Butterfield has each twig and branch disassembled, to be then sent to a foundry to have it morphed to bronze.  It is outstanding work and so impressive yet natural to see.

If you have a chance to see any installation of hers, which appear across the country, I encourage you to make the time to see Deborah’s work first hand.   My husband and I visited the Greg Kucera Gallery in Seattle Washington and we both had a hard time leaving.  It is a moving experience to see this work in its many forms and shapes.  I am thankful I was able to meet her and see how she works and experience from her perspective, what horses mean to her and how they have impacted her life.  I think you will agree, her talent is beyond description!

Debra Butterfield video "Dialog with an Artist" produced by 
A Bar K Productions for the Denver Art Museum