Stag Party


A post about horns and long pointy parts of wild animals.

Hopefully nothing offensive.


People seem to feel quite strongly about this subject, which is fine by me.

I like a healthy debate as long as it stays uber civilised…

and doesn’t shut down Congress.

(sorry, couldn’t resist)

bloodandchampagne4522Personally, I like antlers & horns used in interiors, and exteriors, for that matter.

I think they serve as an earthy connection to the great outdoors, as well as a primal link to the past.

I have little doubt that cavemen persons adorned their spaces with impressive, hard-won trophies.

metro-5-lgvia Erin Martin Design

Jacques Grange 4Jacques Grange

They also add a great sense of texture, depth, even humour, when artfully applied.

laughing goat At least he gets me :-)

You’ve probably already guessed over the years that I’m not of the ‘hunting’ persuasion. I don’t eat game and I wouldn’t know a deer from a stag or an elk from a bison if it were two ft. away from me.

I think I might even have pointed out a ‘mantalope’ in one of my finer moments in Africa.

Let’s just say if the nose is bright red, I’m betting reindeer.

That confession out of the way,

I do know that deers/stags and other forresty animals shed their antlers naturally in the wild, so there need not be any hunting involved, though I’m certainly not naive enough to assume this is always or even generally the case.


toro-bull-head-jayson-homeA big faux bull from Jayson Home, Chicago.


“Winter’s Bone” linen fabric available through Dering Hall (I love the brown colour-way but it wouldn’t come up)

bloodandchampagne4466Go real or go faux, it’s a human desire to celebrate the beauty of animals.


and with so many of the faux antler and horn furnishings available now, it’s very difficult to tell they’re not in fact real.




I have the most beautiful carved wood deer head I bought years ago from John Rosselli Antiques. It hangs in a prominent spot in our home in Sun Valley and I love it, and remembering the saga of how I got it from NY to Idaho (Two cars, a very awkward  plane trip and one intensely quiet husband)

Ahhh, the memories…

b9964920ae770d516a9d02141d875d8dBut antlers, horns & such need not be relegated to cabins and mountain homes by any means.

In fact I think the more unexpected the better.

spring3source unknown. Any idea??

b4ba6063f4d0d65335d5171601ed129cParty animal

Disc_Interiors_13_07_05Very cool, by Disc Interiors

Tracie-Ellis-House-Kyneton-Australia-04Tracie Ellis-House, Kyneton, Australia

19328dcf5a25f0b44dbf7f0fe1626675Here you get the effect with none of the dust!

sun valley, slimpaley.comMy bathroom in Sun Valley.

The antlers wear garlands of pine in the winter. They’re part of a Bavarian collection I bought many years ago.

haynes-roberts-10-xlnElle Decor

witt-1-lgErin Martin Design



witt-6-lgErin Martin Design



LaurenCaron1002_smlThere’s a veritable stampede on the 4th floor of Bergdorf’s right now, including fabrics & accessories from Alessandra Branca’s new collection. I’ll be popping in to see it next week. Photo via 4thFloorWalkup

 and if you’re utterly, adamantly, vehemently opposed to anything even vaguely resembling the real thing…

IMG_7230But still have a sense of humour about it…

there’s always this blow up trophy deer I saw in The Chicago Museum of Contemporary Art gift shop.


Or, cooler still, bicycle taxidermy for the cyclist in your life, by Regan Appleton via Remodelista HERE


Stag ring,  sorry no credit (via Tumblr)

Screen Shot 2013-10-05 at 7.38.32 PM

Brass Rams Horn table base, a pair, via Erin Martin Design


antler hose holderlove this, via Remodelista


Alexander McQueen’s ethereal Stag Queen


Feeling just a step closer to Fall yet?!


PS. My posts are not updating in other blogger’s blog rolls. Is this happening to anyone else out there using WordPress??

Please say yes. I’m starting to get a complex.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Have a great rest of the weekend!


Crown of Horns photo by Paul de Luna for Mojeh magazine. Decorative headpiece by Ashley Lloyd

Hanging Around

lakeside hammock, Muskoka, Ontario

 Perched on the edge of Lake Muskoka, Ontario,

A heavenly hammock swings between a pair of perfectly placed trees in the garden of our friend’s charming old cottage.

It just doesn’t get much better than this.

I’ll spare the Jim Croce song, but “If I could save time in a bottle…”

This would definitely be one of those times.

BTW, have you ever been to Lake Muskoka or the Lake Region of eastern Canada?

Lake Muskoka

This is how beautiful it is. For miles and miles and miles.  No filter, plain & simple.

Put it on your list.

But once again, I digress…

hammock on deck

I told you I was still putting up a hammock post.

September, Schmmeptember.

beach hammockI could possibly have saved this for my “Indigo” post-which, in my timely fashion, should debut just before Christmas.

Cause I know when one hears the word “Christmas” one instantly thinks Indigo!

porch seat hammock

But for real, who doesn’t adore the promise of a cozy hammock with all the dreamy, romantic emotions  they evoke?

A macramé cocoon twisting gently from the creaky ceiling of a sleeping porch, a mattress ticking pillow, Hudson Bay blanket thrown over the edge and a great book nestled within?

or perhaps it’s more

Robinson Crusoe meets Swiss Family Robinson with Johnny Depp lurking behind the nearest palm tree, whittling you a coconut vessel from which to sip your rum. Together.


Hey, It’s all good, Matey :-)

At the other end of the spectrum…

hammock under the trees

This romantic vignette helped inspire my English Country Garden Tastemaker Tag Sale on “One King’s Lane” last week.

indoor hammock, tile floor

I also think it’s awfully fun to hang a hammock indoors, given the right setting, don’t you?

I’ve never done it, but never say never, though I think they’re especially great in a young person’s abode.

Lots of dash for little cash.

Besides,extricating one’s self from a hammock can take some manuoevering manuveouring effort.

black & white hammock photo

I love this photo, but I’m sure I’d have that basket weave deeply imprinted on my entire body for the rest of the day.

Ahh, once again, the ageing process…

it’s a beautiful thing.


Fancy bathing in a hammock big enough for two? check out


Here’s one sporting my favourite combo of black & white, plus a handy thick rug placed strategically underneath for a two-martini roll out.


The pinnacle of Hammock Chic- the woven leather one by Hermes

I’ll take two, on either side of the fireplace thank you very much.

boat bed

And a most charming turn on a nautical hammock, a vintage boat brought indoors.

Don’t you just love creative people?!

Screen Shot 2013-09-03 at 7.27.15 PM

2013 A Space Hammock. For the ultimate threesome.


Hammock in Greece

Or the perfect old school hammock swinging gently above the olive groves of Greece.

Pass the feta please.

seaside hammock

Tropical, indoor, old school or space age

Let’s face it. Hammocks rock.

Bora Bora

At the Nui Nui in Bora Bora

Paging Fletcher Christian…

Marlon Brando as Fletcher Christian



Here’s to sweet languorous dreams of a life lived slowly…

But only 9 more months ’til next summer!

Australia-you’re not even allowed to say a thing right now!

Happy September All



All uncredited photos from Tumblr or pinterest

Constant Wickering

photophoto taken thru a gallery window on Bond St., London

It was gloriously hot in Santa Barbara yesterday and it appears we’ve broken through the “June Gloom” and woken to sunshine again this morning-Hurrah!

 Definitely time to start pulling out the summer slipcovers and accessories, storing winter’s garb and, yes, addressing the bathing suit drawer. Ugh. The horror. Forget that. Let’s go back to accessories.


Something I spotted in a magazine recently reminded me of this great vintage wicker “picnic basket” bag I bought years ago. I can’t even remember where, that’s how long I’ve had it.

890A8612I love the way it hinges open, the tiny pearls, the hand painted variegated leaves and the rich golden hue of the old wicker.

227854062366869109_pb5vtvZc_fRaffia top hat, French, circa 1820


Straw hats in the hall, Slim Paley

The growing collection of wicker and hats in my home is an ever changing tableau…just never the right one, and never where I left it!

Baseball hats (all 5,000 of them) are kept in a less visible area.

The tripod-y thing you see to the left in the wicker basket is a folding wicker seat with handles and a sharp metal end to stick in the grass.

IMG_5532May also be used to perch your Pimms in a pinch.

I believe they were made for cricket, or perhaps polo matches. Someone chime in if you know for sure, but let’s not wicker about it :-)

Screen Shot 2013-06-18 at 5.26.30 PMSo adorable

Can you believe I didn’t have any girls???



Bridget Bardot

hm-summer-doutzen2Douzten Krouse.

Not sure if that’s how you spell her last name, but whatever…like she needs to care.


It’s nice to gather hats for guests in a big wicker basket in your front hall for summer.

217087644508349302_Zt0gRw1T_fI think I used this image once before, but it bears repeating. So charming if not that easily accessible.

93309023500742051_QVYsV4Y4_fI like the random nature and hanging of this collection. One of the best things about wicker is that it is absolutely affordable for everyone.

You can make Pier One stuff look great with the right touch. If your wicker looks too new, set it outside for a few weeks-presto, instant old wicker.

_VIE0572.450x675At the other end of the spectrum, Dolce & Gabbana did some pretty artful things with wicker this season, including these madcap shoes

_VIE1110.450x675and wicker corset.

Talk about pride feeling no pain…

But really, who needs to sit down when you’ve invested this much into your look

_VIE1159.450x675I really loved the playfulness and Carmen Miranda vibe of this collection.

Wicker dress form, Slim Paley photoSnapped at the Marches aux Puces, Paris

Screen Shot 2012-07-02 at 8.37.40 AM

and don’t even get me started on how much I love these. They’re like Campaign furniture made into shoes.

So, basically, two of my favourite things.

Screen Shot 2012-05-22 at 2.28.04 PMphoto Cote Sud

and these. I’m fashion-dextrous don’t you know.


Kate Spade proffered a wicker armadillo

Screen Shot 2012-04-20 at 7.37.07 PMRalph Lauren did a “Picnic basket-come-IT bag” last summer, but may I say that I like my vintage one much better

wicker wine carrying picnic basket, Slim PaleyYes, it’s lost a couple of pearls and a leaf or two but as it’s big enough to fit a bottle of wine, it could double as a picnic basket too!


Of course

402it’s easy to pull just one piece of wicker into your abode for summer

224Or you could opt for a total blast of it

Screen shot 2011-06-27 at 10.17.10 PMlike Anoushka Hempel did on her boat.  SO “Indochine”.  In fact, time to watch that movie again. by myself. The menfolk not at gunpoint.

403-1How pretty are the shadows cast by the “roof” in this room?

700_moon-lamp-one-jpeg“Jellyfish” wicker fixture. Sorry, lost the credit :-(

Screen Shot 2013-06-18 at 10.59.01 PMVintage fishing baskets repurposed as outdoor lights, Vogue.

amazing mid-century wicker chair, Paris, Slim PaleyIf I’d had the focus, time and the energy to organise a container at the Marches aux Puces in Paris last summer…

Oh, the damage I could have wrought. I mean how cool is this chair?!

L1140363And this turn of the century, pristine wicker conservatory seating? Also at the Marches aux Puces

Hotel Costes, ParisI fear we just spent too many evenings keeping the wicker chairs at Hotel Costes warm.

That’s some good people watching there.

Drum table Pottery Barn, Slim Paley photoI did manage to ship a couple of Toureg “wicker” rugs home from Marrakech though.

More on those when the room is finished. Metal drum table from Pottery Barn.

loquats, Slim Paley

And gathered a beautiful big ole wicker basket of loquats from my tree to make…jam? jelly? puree? The loquat remains an enigma. I washed them to make a puree and they started turning brown and rotten as fast as a peeled banana.

So, how about you? Do you have any great summer wicker design tips to share?

I’d love to hear.




Header photo from Dedon Outdoor Furniture


Mandarin & Midnight

oranges in wooden bowl


Tangerine & Noir

Mandarin & Midnight

Kumquat & Charcoal

Persimmon & Jet

Ebony &…

OK, let’s just cut to the chase…

Orange & Black

 It’s a great combination isn’t it?

So let’s not just save it for Halloween.

The black part of the equation is easy. Orange may be introduced as simply as above,

 with art, flowers, fruits, veggies in the kitchen, throws, books, glass or pottery in orange hues, candles, candy in a bowl,

leaving a luscious Leica laying around…

orange Leica

A minor touch of orange carries major impact!

and if you don’t have the element of fire in a room, orange is your man.


To further prove my point;

tumblr_mebiurvIM31rbsp5ao1_1280Love the art propped against the fireplace in this contemporary space.

orange roses slimpaley.comThese are Von’s roses, not from my garden.  No scent, but they lasted about 9 days! Viagra roses.

268949408967282370_THIuSsGo_fTake note how many of these images have some form of natural wood working beautifully with the orange & black combo.

134127529_CtdQBZ7D_cSuch a cool kitch!


Amanda Peet’s entry hall via Vogue

Do I see Viagra roses?

Here, natural wood, orange & black are adding a contemporary pop to an otherwise traditional room.

orange flowers,

 I want to hang a hammock inside somewhere, don’t you?!

Public bike

How about a sexy Public Bike propped casually against your wall

Michael Smith

This is a favorite photo so I’m sorry I don’t have the credit.

The coziness of a sleeping nook, dark wood and the arched leaded window are all so charming.

The Barn, Hermes blanket, slimpaley.comHere fiery orange & deep charcoal in my “Boy Barn”

It will be finished…eventually. You know how I hate to be rushed.

700_roman-williams-stiller-libraryBen Stiller’s library by Roman-Williams

black bookcasesBlack bookcases are terribly chic.

Splashes of orange tones highlight them to dramatic effect in these three photos

one_kings_lane_scents_rusticand Hermes blankets always make Mommy happy.


Pumpkin blankets and crisp black lines help to make this bedroom a triumph.

Oh, you naughty young Parisian man in Hotel Costes! How did you get on this post?!

c0fb762f6ef0f4e96eac0a238136cedeI like the warmth of this living space looking out on to the snow and pines, but can you tell what’s going on on the ceiling?



and a touch of plum in these two pics60728294945475067_c7cdaavm_f


LOVE this bold, fun room, especially the burnt orange velvet cushions on the African bead chairs.



Go bold


Go baby steps

but do think about giving orange & black a go-go (been watching Madmen much?!)


Opulence Moroccan Style

Image 4

Though we enjoyed the hotels we stayed in during our visit to Morocco ( more on those later) for future reference and to satisfy our FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) we spent a little time in Marrakech checking out some other options.

Put your velvet seatbelt on

for the “Royal Mansour” located in the heart of the Medina.

Royal Mansour, Marrakech Where behind every gently wafting silken drape…

Royal Mansour Marrakechanother gasp awaits

Royal Mansour, MarrakechThe attention to detail at Royal Mansour knows NO bounds

Royal Mansour, MarrakechIt’s how you spell luxe and then some.

Screen Shot 2013-03-25 at 1.35.26 PMOne could wear the newest Dior dress I love so much and not feel overdressed.

Royal Mansour, Marrakech“Le Bar” to end all bars

rose gold wallswith walls panelled in reverse glass rose gold leaf

Rose gold wallsPhotos do not capture the depth and beauty of the rose gold panels.

They glow like the gossamer veiled cheeks of an exquisite young virgin bride marrying a dark, dashing Sheik at desert sunset

(think young Omar Sharif without the gambling habit)

Royal Mansour, MarrakechAre you getting the idea yet??!

Morocco slimpaley.comThe chandelier in the interior courtyard

Morocco slimpaley.comWe enjoyed a cocktail or two here in quiet awe, just listening to the birdsong, the tinkling of ice cubes and the heavy rustling of palm fronds in the wind.

Image 32“La Grande Table Marocaine” restaurant, with blue marble floors, is presided over by celebrated French chef Yannick Alleno.

a52e5292fd046c653bc822bbc73ace3eI would probably choose this little number from Armani Spring 2013 should I be so lucky as to dine here.

Royal Mansour, MarrakechCool marble, embroidered water-silk taffeta, feathers & inlaid rosewood…cuhraazy

Royal Mansour, MarrakechI don’t even know how to begin to explain the coffered ceiling in the “Chimney Lounge”

Honeycombs conceived by bees drunk on silver.

Again, the photos don’t do it justice.

Royal Mansour, MarrakechThe Chimney Lounge, so named for the transparent glass fireplace that allows you to gaze upon the gardens through the flames while sipping your cognac.

Did I mention it’s a wood burning fireplace ??

Come ON.

Royal Mansour, MarrakechPhoto via Royal Mansour

I need this in my next life as a Persian Princess.

Royal Mansour, MarrakechHand tooled leather walls

hand tooled leather rugand rugs.

It just doesn’t stop.

Royal Mansour, Marrakech“La Grande Table Francaise” Royal Mansour’s French restaurant preparing for the evening.

I can only imagine how beautiful it must be by candle lightImage 29A gecko candle holder, one of many crystal creatures crawling across the walls of the restaurant.


Royal MansourAs dusk descends (yes, we stayed that long!) the hotel becomes even more magical

Royal Mansour

There are no “rooms” at the Royal Mansour, just 53 private riads.

As you’ve no doubt deduced by now, this is not where you would choose to stay if you’re counting your dirhams.

 Ahem. It’s splurging to be sure. I don’t know if it would be my choice if I were bringing children with me either, but for a romantic and decadent getaway for couples? Hell ya.

There is also a gorgeous spa and a divine little shop.

But of course, you knew that!


For more information on Royal Mansour


All photos (unless otherwise credited) by Slim Paley.