Interior Design: Styling a Vignette, creating a Sleigh Bed by Ginevra Held

French Country Styling

Perusing the internet as you do, or as one does, I came across this photo of a sleigh bed:

Into my head popped the fact that at Mom's place in France, many of the wooden headboards have not been attached to the mattresses, and therefore and hence, one could put a headboard as a footboard, and voila! You have a sleighbed.  Now, if and when you think about unattached headboards, if you think about them at all, and you are not immediately inspired to create a sleighbed, well my friends, that is the difference between you and me.  It may also be accounted for by the fact that you are thinking of other things, and, dear reader, I will give you the benefit of the doubt in this case.

I am now going to take you on a step by step of how I got from two twin beds to one adorable sleigh bed avec canopy.

French Country Beds

Bedroom "before" with 2 twin beds as you recall.

Secondary 'before" view showing curtain and curtain rod that will serve for the canopy.

The Canopy begins to form... Here you see I have attached by overlapping the curtain that was formerly for the doorway.  

The bed gets moved into place...

The second headboard is moved into place.

Now we have a sleigh bed/ day bed. The coverlet is tucked in to show off the striped bedskirt.

Curtain draping: the bottom curtain is swagged and draped over the right of the bed, the top curtain is draped to the left.

A secondary view to show you the top of the curtain rod.

Finally!!! The fun part! Pillows!!!! This is when it really becomes a day bed!

"Objets" are added for styling and to create a lovely vignette!

A more free form pillow arrangement....

A detail shot of the canopy experience...

French Country Bedroom

And my favorite vignette, using the jet de lit as side table....

So that is how I created a sleigh bed/ day bed with a canopy.  Now I strongly believe that this process is applicable in your own home.  I have shown you how a curtain rod attached to the wall with overlapping curtains can be turned into a canopy.  I have also shown you how two headboards can be made into a headboard and footboard to create a canopy bed.  So I believe this look is completely diy-able for your own home.  

A day bed is a wonderful spot for reading and relaxing and with a canopy and pillows makes for a gorgeous addition to any room.

In case you were wondering what exactly to do with your day bed, I recommend this:

What do you think? Do you fancy a daybed in your home?



Interior Design: Tiny Decorating Tip by Ginevra Held

Feel like sugar on the floor, bud dum dum da dum dum dummmm….. sugar on the floor….. (just sing it in your head…)

What do Etta James and interior design have to do with one another you might ask?  Nothing and EVERYTHING.

Basically Etta said she felt like sugar on the floor, and well, as a designer, I like putting things on the floor.  So there you go!

Alright alright, that's totally pushing it.  And please know that I deeply respect and adore Ms. Etta James, so all you bluesy types out there just calm down.  

The fact is when I was at college taking a ton of English classes at UC Berkeley (this was before I decided to major in Architecture) we were told to start our essays with a hook or a quote.  So there you go, thank you Etta for my hook.

Now to what we came for.  The tiny decorating tip: like sugar on the floor, put things on the floor. What things? Paintings! Prints! Posters! Empty Frames! Lean those suckers, layer them, stand back and enjoy.  I employed this little trick for this vignette I did and I rather like the outcome.

Now Etta feeling like sugar on the floor was not a good thing, at first things can be sweet like sugar, then you are tossed aside, wasted on the floor, sugar on the floor.  But when you put your paintings on the floor, it is a good thing and don’t worry they will not be wasted.  (again sorry to the blues fans, and please excuse me Etta, but you know…)

Also, just because things are on the floor does not mean they shouldn't be on the wall too!


Do you lean anything against the wall and on the floor in your house?  Are you ready to try it? Turn on some Etta James and get going!




How I customized black and white toile de jouy by Ginevra Held

Hi! So over the summer, I was looking for a fabric to use in the living room of my Mom’s stone farmhouse in the south of France.  I had chosen to liven up the room with hot pink accents.  I spray painted a number of things neon pink, including a Marianne bust, two empire style sconces, a bird cage and some hay.  I also had the beams painted pink.  So I needed a dash of pink on the two white sofas to tie everything together.  I knew I wanted toile.  Ideally a hot pink toile.  We went to a number of stores, but couldn’t find any.  Then we found a fabric store that had black and white toile.  I had in the back of my head this idea that I could customized a black and white toile by painting a motif on it in the same pink. At first I was going to make a stencil, of a piece sign, or something else and use that to spray paint the motif.  Then I came up with the idea of highlighting parts of the toile by taping around those areas. With the other areas taped up, I would then spray the exposed areas, and then take the tape off revealing hot pink accented parts of the toile.  This idea was partially in tribute to a new toile pattern that I had seen from Pierre Frey. The fabric house had worked with an artist (Hervé Mat&Jewski) who took a traditional Toile de Jouy print and highlighted aspects of it in neon colors.

Photo via:

Photo via:

 In typically french manner, they took something old and made it new again.  I think this is what i like most about French design.  They acknowledge and celebrate their heritage, but always always move forward and live in the present.  A prime example of this duality is the designer Philippe Starck.  All of his designs are new and innovative, but they firmly acknowledge a long history of French design.  Prime example, the Louis Ghost Chair.

Here is a break down of the customizing process:

Here is the pillow fabric before:

Here is the parts taped around to be "highlighted":

Pillows Spray Painted:

Tape taken off and the new fabric revealed:

Here is a picture of the pillows in situ in the living room:

The photographer suggested I pose hugging the pillows.  I thought that a little weird.  I did it anyway.  Please forgive me.

I know I know, super weird!!!!

I know I know, super weird!!!!

So anyway, that was the influence behind the pillows and how I customized the fabric.  I made a video of me taking the tape off, but honestly I don't know how to upload it here without a vimeo account and I hate making accounts.  I just hate it.  I hate passwords and usernames.  I just can't right now.  I can't!!! ok, I'm calming down.  I like the video though. Maybe I'll post it to Instagram for my millions of followers. Just kidding.  But for real, thank you to anyone reading this and to people liking my designs on Instagram. I appreciate the support.  Really!!!!!!!