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Saturday, August 30, 2008

Gold Leafed Italian Jardiniere

Everyone I think loves a little green , something living ( or not ) in a room.

Do you have something you need to disguise
or you would rather not have to look at in your room ?
Perhaps a corner with wires to hide , ( a house guest, boyfriend, girlfiend )
or something else that is an eyesore ?
That's right, just fill you jardiniere (plant stand) with a lovely plant ,
place it in just the right spot , and then you can forget about it !

As a matter of fact, I am off to fix a little eyesore that I have sitting on my sofa right now.
Have a nice weekend.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Michael Aram - Acessories and Gifts

This is a beautiful vase by Michael Aram. It reminds me of a pair of truly unbelievable lamps that I placed in a clients home. They were art nouveau and the texture , shape and color of this vase reminds me of them.

Do you know anyone who is the MOON & STARS to you ?
Try these servers as a gift. It is the Moon & Sun by Michael Aram.

You should take a look at his site, he has everything from furniture to table service. He does so much with texture, I love it.
You will find things to use in a contemporary as well as traditional environment.
Michael Aram has also designed for Waterford, I know that you can see some of those pieces at Bloomingdale's.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Personalize with Accessories, Take These BABY RATTLES

Personalize with Accessories
When I am working on a clients home, after making sure that all the
Basics are taken care of …..them comes Accessorizing.

The thoughtful part, the time consuming part,
And often the laborious part of design.

The fun part is the actual HUNT, and most times you have to
very carefully get it to the client‘s home in one piece if it is breakable.
Me personally, I don’t like breakable anything but what choice do I have?
If it is RIGHT, it is RIGHT!!

And I have always had great luck when ignoring the shop keepers
who want to wrap it up like a mummy in bubble wrap.
It seems to me it often increases the risk of breaking it just getting
the bubble wrap off that an overly zealous salesman has wrapped with too much tape.

I always have a lot of the big beach towels in my car.
Depending on the Accessory, I may roll up in a towel and place it behind
the front seat of my car on the floor.
It seems to brace it there.
If it is larger I just wedge it to death with all the towels.
You might carry a couple of old pillows in your trunk
when on an Accessory Hunting Expedition.

After all this……it’s always nice if they appreciate how ’brilliant’
the piece is for that particular space.
I was doing A Baby Doctors Home, hence the BABY RATTLES.

I was in Paris and saw these in a shop window and was so intrigued.
What in the world could they be?
They were beautiful.
They were antique baby rattles, and to me they looked like some sort
of jewelry.
They were made of sterling silver and some had ivory as well.
These were referred to as ‘Nanny Rattles’ because
each one would do something different, and the Nanny would use
these ‘Nanny Rattles’ to distract the infant.
Some rattles had whistles, some had quickly moving parts
( the sterling portions of the rattle ) including noise makers.
They were so great.I purchased about 7 and placed them in a bowl.
They were a huge success !
But, most importantly they were very personal and related to the Doctors Profession.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Old Red Chinoiserie Tole Bar

Old Red Chinoiserie Tole Bar

This Adorable Old Red Chinoiserie Tole Bar
is Purrr-fect for a small home or apartment.
I have never seen a little bar like this.
I think for the right spot it would be killer.

It measures 32 H x 30 W x 16.5 D.
How great is that ?
(Make sure to click on foto’s)

First of all, you could use a counter height stool
to sit at or behind the bar.

This little bar could be used as a console
and pulled out when entertaining.
It could be a night stand in a guest room
for a pop of color.
And you would have all this hidden storage
inside it when against the wall.
I really like that idea.
Everyone will ask you " what is that ?”
……Another great conversation piece.

It looks as though it is trimmed out with brass-
AND it’s on casters…and I love anything on casters,
except for ottomans.
They roll away from you when you need them,
but they are a bit better when on thick carpet.

As a matter of fact I just ordered a great big set
of industrial casters for my boyfriend. LOL

You can find this at :

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Trunks And Gears
click on picture to enlarge
If you have a room and you are contemporary, maybe you are a minimalist or mid century modern…whatever.

If the METAL you have in the room is silver, try this spray paint on a newer trunk
( trunk about $ 40.00 instead of $ 2000.00 plus ) that has interesting details,
such as studs or nail heads. The cheap smooth metal trunk for summer campers would work.
And instead of the stand ( which you could have made any height you would like for a couple of hundred dollars ) you could order industrial casters online or you could pick up some vintage casters…maybe even feet.... sofa legs or chair legs.

When you are finished you could have a small custom piece of glass made for the top. Just be careful not to scratch it. Treat it like wood....don't drag something sharp across it.

BUT, guess what ? No Worry....just hit it with more paint.

click to enlarge
Now, regarding the gears….do the same with the gears and lay them out on a table, stack them, use as a paperweight, a big one as a door stop, or put them in a primitive wooden bowl after they are all chrome, shiny and slick.
It just looks HOT.

Paint Info :

Krylon - Premium Metallic. And only this metallic paint from their collection of paints. The colors are as follows: original chrome, copper brilliance, copper foil, guilded brass, gold foil, and 18k gold plate silver foil, and sterling silver.
You can use it on wood, metal, wicker, plastic, ceramic, plastic, glass, plaster, paper and paper mache.

Make sure you have a very smooth surface -

Trust me on this one……this is the best paint to use.
It’s great and it will freak you out how fantastic it looks.
I used it on a wicker basket that I wanted to use as a garbage can, After I sprayed it, it looked like a chrome metal woven basket made to look like wicker.
People were sure that is WAS METAL.

Be Brave...and Be Creative.
You will be glad you did : )

Monday, August 18, 2008

Onyx Chandelier - 1930's

Onyx Chandelier – 1930’s

This is a wonderful piece of 1930’s Design.
Today it as beautiful as it was yesterday.
When I am looking for a piece like this it is so difficult to find.
If you are Deco, especially French Deco
( which to me, is the ONLY DECO ) check this chandelier out.
click on picture to enlarge

The ChalkBoard Wall

You know, I have always wanted to do this ChalkBoard wall thing
mainly because I am just the wacky, ‘Creative’, with
“ideas bouncing around in my head like a pin ball machine” type.

Then I decided that it would work best if I could get someone
to carry it around…maybe on their back for me, or just prop it up
when I needed to remember something, or get back on task,
or write an idea down...whatever.
I don’t have an issue with carrying the chalk around in my purse,
chalk is the size of a lipstick.
And Don’t Even suggest a palm pilot or something like that.
I write BIG,
And am uncomfortable being confined.
I never did like coloring inside the lines in my coloring books.

So, I like this idea and finally, I think I have found the right application for me.
The Chalkboard I am talking about is in the picture # 3 with the
Tall Thin Chalkboard propped against the wall.
I can keep it right in my face when I want it,
or stick it in a closet when I don’t want to look at it,
or get someone to strap it on their back. LOL
Yes, this works for me. click on pictures to enlarge
pictures 2 & 3 are from and picture # 1 is from Plaza Magazine

Sunday, August 17, 2008

This Gorgeous Yacht Got Me to Thinking……

Well, It is Sunday ………….I think I should post something luxurious,
sort of a vacation yet still related to design.
This gorgeous yacht got me to thinking, which I do entirely too much of……..
Me personally, I am beyond sensitive when it comes to ‘SETTINGS’
or the atmosphere of a space.Wherever I am ….what I see,
what I hear, the temperature, the smells,and the sounds…all affect me.
I will be comfortable or uncomfortable.
I will stay or I will leave.
This 'HEAD' is worthy of duplicating in a home-
It seems to me that I would want to stay on this yacht all day ….
but if something made me uncomfortable or annoyed me,
I would swan dive right off that BOAT ( notice, now it is just a boat )
and swim to shore or ride ‘FLIPPER’ home.

You know, 'a thing or a person' can look good, look like fun, look like luxury, but it is only when you get into the galley or the bilge of the yacht that you will know the truth of the matter.

I grew up in Miami Beach on Palm Island and I do remember
Opting to swim home on more than one occasion.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Turquoise Foo Dogs

I think these guy's are absolutely gorgeous.

The 1st 3 foo dog pictures are of a very costly set. Click on them and you will be directed to the site. But don't get too excited....they are sold. And they sold for $1,506.50.
The last picture is of another set that sells for about 25.00 or 30.00 dollars. And they look it compared to real real deal........but if you have nothing to compare it to......
(Click on that pic and you will be directed as well.)
I have always heard some funny business about Foo's being bad luck.
I am not superstitious, but the way things are in the world right now......
I am not willing to take a chance. Are you ?
so here is my Little tip:
After a bit of research I found out that you just NEED TO GET A PAIR.
And as individuals.... they need to face opposite directions.
And WHEN YOU PLACE THEM they need to be able to have their ugly little heads
facing each other just like in the very 1st picture at the top of this post.
Later, Renee Finberg

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Tiny Chest for Make-Up

I went with an art dealer friend of mine from Sun Valley Idaho to this huge antique show that shows and sells exclusively America Old West Antiques including these humongous (I mean 25ft x 15ft)Hand painted circus posters from the day when a circus was a circus….I am a bit off the track but I (who was born in Texas and tell no one! - I hate being a Little Cowgirl) after
3 days found myself drawn into all of it. It really was fascinating.
I brought the coolest corkscrew back. It was from an old saloon, imagine what went on around that corkscrew. Do you think someone like Miss Kitty from Gun Smoke used it?
I do.
The corkscrew hangs on the wall in my kitchen and people always comment on it.

Ok, back to the topic…..
I also bought some Cowboy Eye Doctors traveling medical box that he would have carried all the lenses in for exams.
It is designed in such a way that it has about 12 drawers , each measuring 5.5” W x 1.5”H x 13” D. The finished height of the piece is about 14”.
It has this great masculine leather handle on it.
I bought it thinking I would sell it to one of my clients.
When I got it home I was just sitting around starring at it and wondering if it would work well as a make-up box on my dresser.
YEP!! It certainly did.

Since then countless other women that I have worked for and with have all adopted this
Design Idea. It completely un-clutters your dressing area and keeps everything tidy and organized. I am not an organized person in the least. I love this thing.

You can find tiny little chests at craft shows, flea market, overstock .com and, marshalls, tj max, ross….the list is endless.
Ladies, ( and you know who you are )
I promise, you will love it too.
PS all the above little chests are small and not actual large dressers-
my sister just emailed me that i was unclear. sorry.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Such a Deal for Classic Garden Stools

Wow, here is one of the many secrets I will share.
Remember the gorgeous green ceramic garden stools from a few post ago?
Well, here you go…..
These you can pick up at nearly ½ the price at a place called ‘Pearl River’.
These are 4 inches higher ( 19”)

You know there is a bronze one in this group.
Bronze can be slipped into a scheme easily as a side table- whatever.
And because of the metallic, it will add a bit of jazz or glamour.

The other colors are practical.
And before get a white one....-
they just happen to be selling the white one at the other place for 129.00

I would be cautious with the aqua/or turquoise stool.
I love aqua & turquoise……but,
All I can say is that it had better not be a shade ‘off’ the aqua color that you are working with.
If it is……….you might end up with a pretty nasty look.

: ) happy shopping

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Painted Furniture Trends

Hand Painted Furniture
International Influences: Design inspiration has gone global with pieces drawing on looks from Asia and Australia to France and Cuba. Asian styling, with its emphasis on simplicity, natural materials and clean lines, has made its way into the major furniture collections of Thomasville, Bassett and Broyhill among others. Country is turning more sophisticated by borrowing inspiration from England and France. Toile is being used to accent everything for the home from bed linens to upholstered furniture, and English and Irish influences could be seen in lines from Pennsylvania House, Marge Carson, Hooker and Stanley. Tropical looks evoking steamy safaris and sultry luxury were spotted throughout the market. Furnishings in this vein incorporate exotic materials such as bamboo, wicker, rattan, banana bark and motifs of monkeys, elephants, camels and palm leaves. Animal Prints: Animal skin looks have been hot for a while, and they aren't going away anytime soon. Skins turned up on everything from upholstery to accessories……….
From: Furniture Trends
To read the rest of the article go to :

Monday, August 11, 2008

Mongolian Painted Furniture

Chinoiserie - Painted Furniture

I personally adore Chinoiserie. I once used a very small jewel case with legs that was from the Paris Flea market. It was from about 1803, it was the darkest green , almost black.
The top lifted up, it had the original salmon silk in it and a mirror. It was tattered inside which was fine. The outside had very simple/delicate lines.
Ladies used to sit on a little stool and put on their jewels for the day or an elegant affair.
It measured about 26 high , 12 wide by 18 long.
I used it next to a chair in an aqua toile dressing room. It ended up being featured in a magazine.
ah.................I wish I could time travel.
I would only go back in time.
Wish I could today....The Georgian era, I want to be there.

Painted Cabinet from : San Miguel Allende

Well, according to all the Home Furnishing Journals....Painted Furniture is on it's way back ! Did it ever really go away ?

Back in the early nineties I was designing at a small Home Furnishing Place in Boca Raton called 'Casa Casa', we eventually opened another store on Worth Avenue in Palm Beach across from 'Devonshire' ( I think that is the name ) and just down the street from 'Johnny Brown'.

We did very well with this stuff. The stores were opulent, alot of eye candy. This piece is not a very good example of what they can produce in Mexico. And this would have been inexpensive compared to our other custom painted pieces.

At any rate , I could never live with more than one piece of it. But it would really have to be right. I guess in all those years I never did find one I could live with, because even though I could buy it below cost....there are none in my home.

I have to admit I was relieved when I was out of that store and started my own business.
I found it like wearing handcuffs to work with it.

Armless Sofas and Chairs

This is a room I custom made an armless sectional for.This space was so small - it was a breakfast area, the client wanted it to be a family room/media room.
In the end it did work out well. I used Wall Mounted flat screen TVs
and custom media towers that were very shallow and hid a myriad
of problems.

I can not say enough about armless chairs and sofas.
There are no arms to go out of style. I love that !

Something else I love about an armless sofa is
that you gain approximately 24” in a room.
With some of those tiny spaces that architects and builders
have the nerve to call rooms you can actually make a functional
living room or den with these armless pieces.

When designing my jobs, that is one of my little tricks
I try and incorporate in the design of a tight space.

I want everything to look current but have a Timeless & Classic feel.
And if you skirt the sofa, there are no legs to look dated either.
Today most sofas legs can be changed. They literally screw on and off

What is of greater value than to be able update your room by a fresh paint job,
Maybe recover a piece or two,
new fabric throw pillows and a few interesting accessories ?
Bloomingdale's Furniture carries this line.

To make a sectional do not forget you will need a corner or 1 of the pieces made
with a corner as part of the sofa.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Mrs.Astor's Mansion

Brook Astor's family home. All info from articles written and printed in The New York Times.
*have a nice Sunday & do something nice for someone today without them knowing.

Brooke Astor

Some nice sunday reading about someone with style and grace.
As seen in the New York Times

Friday, August 8, 2008

clignancourt - paris flea market

Firstly, I am quite sorry that I am late with the post today. But I thought I would just chat about how much character CLOCKS can give a room.
One of my favorite things to do is to shop for accessories for my clients in Paris. You just get on the Metro ( it is the only way to travel in Paris for any distance ) and your destination stop is :Porte de Clignancourt. Once you get off you are there. It is only 1 or 2 streets away.
Officially the flea market is called: ( who knew ? )Les Puces de Saint-Quen.
I have been going there for years and always called it 'The Clingnancourt Flea Market'....and I always found it and always spent a lot of money and shipped a lot home for clients.
I get nutty just thinking about it.
There are many items in my published interiors and on this site that have items I have brought back. One is a big wall clock you will see it in the post above or below this one.
I must say the last time I went , many shops have gone out of business. And the prices have increased. But.....upstairs there is a little restaurant that the exporters ( oooh , I guess I'm one ) and the shop keepers eat at, great red cabbage soup. I always go in February so that maybe I get my shipment by June !
It is always worth the wait.
If you go....happy hunting.

Interior Design, Palm Beach, Boca Raton, Window Treatments, Custom Design, Paint, Color Coordination, Online Interior Design

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Film Locations

This is absolutely worth a snoop !

The locations are so varied- RF

The Beach Studios is a small but fast growing locations agency dedicated to providing a wide range locations for the film and photography industry. Owned by stylist, Atlanta Bartlett and designer, David Coote we have a combined 30 years experience in the field. Our user friendly website is quickly expanding offering a wide range of properties from sparsely furnished townhouses with the flexibility to decorate yourselves to slick interior designed houses full of interesting furniture and props.
We pride ourselves on our professional yet friendly approach and our staff all have first hand knowledge of each location so are able to offer advice where needed to make your choice as easy as possible.
We are constantly looking for new and interesting locations. If you think your property has what it takes then click on our “Register your property with us” page or call us on 020 8875 0075 ..... seriously, take a peek

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

A Most Unusual Finish

This is really yummy. What an easy finish to work with. This is a finish that some have refered to as Paris Graige, this piece reminds me of it.
It is so different but works well with so many color combinations.

iron bamboo bench that folds

can you believe this 'crossover' ( works with traditional, transitional and contemporary ) occasional bench actually folds for storage?
It is truly a find.
Think of all the convenience of being able to use it for extra could pull it up to a dining table, use it inside or outside for entertaining.

About Renée Finberg

I have been in this business since the age of 22.

I love what I do and cannot imagine my life without Design.

Design Challenges are great.

And because of those challenges

I have imported fine antique pieces from Paris,

Designed and Manufactured Furniture,

Created Fantastic Window Treatments,

And solved all kinds of spatial & architectural issues

With my unique style.

If I can't find it, I create it.

My rooms would make excellent movie sets.

I am a visual, tactile and audio sensitive individual.

Creating is what I live for, not math, not spelling, not science.

Just Great Design.

Just imagine how it would be if each of us,

If only for a few hours of everyday,We could be in a space that is our very own.A place that is exactly the way we want it to be

Surrounded by all the things we wanted to see,

The atmosphere we wanted feel, smell and the sound we wanted to listen to.

Private Paradise



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Renee Finberg 'TELLS ALL' in her Adventures in Design by Renee Finberg is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
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