Interior Design: Artistic Technique by Ginevra Held

Hello all!

I wanted to share with you how one of the main decoration elements in the room, that would be the profiles of the Duke and Duchess of Urbino, came into being.  I used old fashioned pencil and paper techniques that I learned when I was little from my Dad who is an artist/architect.  These techniques are not fancy, but they are smart and creative.  There are easier more technologically advanced ways of doing this now, but there is nothing more fun for me then getting lost in a time warp of drawing.

Now, I have been using these techniques since I was little, so when it comes time to do it, the process is automatic for me.  So I am going to do my best to explain what I did.  In essence how I got from here:

To Here:

 I started with some good old fashion freehand drawing.  After I made a trace of the oval of the frame, I got to work on the Duke:

After drawing the Duke, I traced him and flipped him over.  And then drew the duchess on top of that to get their proportions right.  For example, the Duke and Duchesses' eyes are at the same level, and her hair ornament goes to the curve in his hat.  It was important to get these right, which is why I drew her on a trace of him.

A cool trick when you don't have tracing paper, is to put what you want to trace on a window.  Then put the paper you are going to draw on, and trace away.  The light pouring through makes the paper translucent and easy to trace:

Once I had the Duke and the Duchess complete, I had to get them on the wall in the room.  The cool trick for this is the turn the drawing over and apply your pencil graphite along the lines on the back of the drawing like this:

I flipped them both back over and taped them to the wall.  Once they are on the wall, you simply trace over your lines and in so doing, graphite will be transferred to the wall and you get your outline!  Its so much fun.  Make sure to press firmly!

After their outlines were transferred I was able to start painting:

And then fill them in:

Wheh! That's all folks!

It's intensive but a lot of fun and I love the result.  I'm lucky I was taught all these techniques by my Dad, they have come in handy on more than a few occasions!  As I said, there may be quicker more technological ways to do this, but for me, this hands on, multi step, I-forgot-to-eat-and-what-time-is-it? approach is the best for me.

Happy Drawing!



Interior Design: Tiny Styling Tip by Ginevra Held

Hey People! Here is a styling tip from yesterday's room reveal:

Instead of going all Marie Kondo on your magazines (you know that lady who wants you to throw out all your shit so you can have an organized life, but you really like your shit, it's yours after all, so wtf) - stack those magazines and make a side table! Organizing and Decorating in one! Then put a clock on it.  A vintage Louis XVI style clock on it.  If you liked it, you should have put a clock on it.  Feel me?

Then, if you're really cool, and I know you are, get an industrial lamp, and put in on the floor.  Not on a magazine stack.  That would be uncool.  I mean you should probably throw some of them away.  It's getting a little cluttered......




Hello Vogue!

Interior Design: One Room Challenge Finale! by Ginevra Held

Do any of you guys do Ballet Beautiful? (Don't answer that Mom, I know you do.)  

Well I do too, and there's one of her exercise routines (that would be Mary Helen Bowers) where you do these high kicks like you're one of the Rockette dancers, anyway, towards the end she has you high-kicking away and she goes "It's Finale!" So yeah, "It's Finale!"

The room, if I may say so myself, looks great.  

I mean, the room is like McDonald's....



I'm Lovin' It.

(see Pete Davidson)

So here you go my friends! Hope you like it, let me know what you think! But be nice!!!!

Also, all the painting and styling and photography were done by yours truly, just saying...

I don't know what it is, but this is my favorite angle...

Twins, Basil! Twins!

If you've studied Art History, and/or spend a lot of time with an Art Historian like I do, you will know who these two crazy kids are... If you don't know who they are,  head over to the Uffizi and ask for Piero della Francesca's Duke and Duchess of Urbino. Ciao!

One of my favorite lights, the Mayday lamp designed by Konstantin Grcic and manufactured by Flos, seen here hanging out with a vintage Louis XV style clock.

I had seen the Mayday lamp hanging out on the floor in a Maison Martin Margiela designed hotel in Paris, and I was like, hey, I can do that!

A bit of fun here with frames on frames.  You know how I love empty frames, and the gold in all the frames ties the room together with the gold on the other wall.

A view the other way, out the door, to the countryside. NICE.

This angle is so you know there's a skylight....

And again.... just like this photo.

Whew! There you go! Well, I will talk a bit more about how the design came about and influences etc soon, but for now I'm pooped!

Thanks for tuning in, see you next time.

I'm not only the president, I'm also a member.

Wait what?!



One Room Challenge: Round 3 by Ginevra Held

Status Update!!

Last week I showed the inspiration shots for the color of the wall.  I wanted a deep kind of tropical blue.  I bought two paint colors, one very deep and one very tropical and mixed until I had the desired effect. You can see the various shades here:

Also, as I shared last time, the color scheme inspiration is from my Mother's toile de jouey jacket which is lined in an intense blue, while the pockets have a hit of orange.  I was trying to determine how I wanted to get this hit of orange.  I like stripes, so I considered a minimal approach, a stripe behind each head board.  But as I continued to think, inspiration struck! :

The photo is of my Mother's second home in France, and you can see the beautiful beams and what a cool pattern they make.  In the end room I am currently designing, the room has all the properties of a traditional french country home from the period, the stone walls, beams etc, minus this particular architectural feature.  So I thought I would do an homage to architectural detail in paint.  I remembered that Merci in Paris had done something similar in the corrider, so to speak, that is on the way to their store.  On one side is this beam and fill detail and on the other, they did a trompe l'oeil replica.  I loved it.  So I am replicating the pattern in my Mother's second house here.  You can see I marked out the pattern in ribbon, and then have begun painting:

And the painting has begun:

So there we go.  Now I have to keep on chugging along painting, and then I have to find a good orange soon!  I am excited to keep moving along and thrilled about this decorative motif development.  

Stay Tuned!!

xo, Ginevra

Interior Design: Will Ferrell's Living Room by Ginevra Held

Hi all.  I hope you had a good weekend. Yesterday, I got an email from Architecture Digest about Celebrity Homes on sale.  And I admit I opened it.  I only looked at Fred Armisen’s though.  It’s a cute house in Silverlake.  And its under a million!

I was thinking, geez, Arch Digest is kinda gross in a way with their fascination with celebrity. But I felt like internet browsing, so I was like whatever. I clicked on the celebrity style category and was like what can I stomach? I chose Celebrity Living Rooms mostly because it promised Will Ferrell's living room, and I like him.

I clicked through until I landed on Will Ferrell's Living Room:

Photo via Architectural Digest, Will Ferrell's Living Room

Photo via Architectural Digest, Will Ferrell's Living Room

And I was looking at his living room and going this is really nicely put together, very modern eclectic, tasteful, great art choices.  But I was like, come on.  Where does the guy sit?  I mean I know he plays a nut and a goofball, but most nutty people are very smart so I was not at all surprised that he has good taste.  But the fact is Will Ferrell is a big guy, and this does not look like a place where he can just sit down.  I often think about that when looking at rooms I absolutely adore because they are filled with Louis XVI furniture and I think how much I wish I could afford those antiques and then I remember that on Sunday nights I like to completely lie down on the sofa with my feet on the sofa arms and watch The Good Wife.  I don’t think you can do that on a Louis XVI settee.  

As if Arch Digest could read my mind, the next slide said, “in another of Will Ferrells living rooms….” and sure enough I was like, ah, this is where the man sits, or perhaps lies all the way down with his feet up and watches The Good Wife on Sunday nights.

Photo via Architectural Digest, Will Ferrell's Living Room

Photo via Architectural Digest, Will Ferrell's Living Room

So it got me thinking.  What if, unlike Will Ferrell, you only have one living room?  How do you get the best of both the totally refined and the totally loungable?  This is my goal in decorating.  To find that perfect spot.  Where you have the refined pieces, but also the pieces you can feel comfortable lounging on.

What do you think?  Should a living room (if you have just one) be for total lounging or should it be totally refined?  Or both?

I learned a couple other things from this slideshow.

1. Diane Keaton’s house is exactly how you would imagine it. Think Annie Hall Interior Decor.

2. My homegirl Julianna Margulies has exceptional taste in that she hired Vicente Wolf, an incredible designer to do her place

3. And finally, kudos to Gerard Butler.  He got an architect and a film set designer.  Um Hello Genius!!! Who better to design your home than a film set designer! What fun!  They know how to populate a space.  And make it look lived in.  I love film sets.  That is too cool. And the man has “conversation areas”.  Hello!!!!


What do you think of Will Ferrell’s Living room?


xo, Ginevra