Monday, April 14, 2014

Design On A Dime

This year again, I will participate in the fabulous fund raising event  "Design On  A Dime". 
This April, Housing Works will celebrate the 10th anniversary of New York City most popular interior design benefit.
The event will be held at the Metropolitan Pavilion in Chelsea. The event last for 3 days and features 50 of the wold's top interior designers. Each designer will create a room vignette and all merchandise will be offered  at 50 to 70 percent off retail. Rosario Dawson, actress and AIDS advocate is the honorary chair, Michael Boodro, editor in chief of Elle Decor will be one of the co-chair.
The highlight of this event is the opening Night Reception on April 24th, with hundreds of VIPs and  celebrities who mingles with us, designers and shop, shop and shop some more...

All profits of Design on a Dime go to Housing Works whose goal is to provide New Yorkers living with aids, housing and services.

Last year, our booth was designed for an imaginary dandy. I was in Africa while my team was putting the booth together. I did most of the creative, donating pieces from my Showroom INTERIEURS as well as relying on our vendors 'generous donations. I had a fond thought for my associates on the night of the party, while sipping wine under the African sky…

This time, for a 10th anniversary, I am going bold, making a statement…. It has been quite a process. Furniture showrooms  were not as generous and I had to rely on our chore vendors. Romo fabrics with whom we have a wonderful relationship provided us with their brand new collection off fabrics…simply amazing! powerful black and white statement. Mario Valle upholstered the sectional whose frames were made by…myself and my dear husband. We learned carpentry in a week-end as we  could not find anyone willing to make the frames… the result between Mario's incredible skills and Romo fabulous textiles is beyond my expectations. Innergaze who is behind our most challenging projects, designed and built a console, while rugs, accessories and accent furniture and lighting came from the Interieurs Showroom. Even my son was involved as he designed a fish tank for the occasion.
The artist, whose name I will reveal after the opening, is working on 2 huge canvas which will be graffiti art. I am really into graffiti… see my Buenos Aires post here.

If you are in New York or planning to visit, please do come to the event and visit our Interieurs booth.

Design on A Dime 2013 inspiration

Interieurs Design Studio by Francine Gardner booth 2013

Below are  the inspirations for the upcoming Design on A Dime 2014

Final rendering for our booth:

Would love to hear your thoughts!!! too crazy ?

A Bientôt,


Looking to design your house? would love to be of help…no worries, my designs can be more tame...

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Off on a cruise...

On the Irrawaddy river in Myanmar

This month, Marsha of Splenderosa is really in need of some sunshine and suggested to the members of "By Invitation Only" to share their thoughts on vacationing on a cruise: when to go, where to go, what to wear etc...

I have to admit that the thought of going on a cruise has no appeal to me....sorry... Every year I would treat my parents to a cruise in different parts of the world. When the time comes that I can no longer go on far-away exotic trips, I will only then likely be seduced by the idea of traveling in luxury and being catered to.

My idea of a cruise is to travel quietly with no one on the boat but the required personnel, being able to relax completely without having to think on what to wear, what to eat. Years ago I found myself in an embarrassing situation while booking a short cruise on Ha-long Bay in Vietnam for 5 days . As always, I required total privacy and requested a private cruise. To our horror, the beautiful cruise ship, reminiscent of the traditional Vietnamese teak boats, came to pick my husband , children, our guide an I  and... no one else...only our 2 cabins were occupied. It was a dream as we had full freedom, no schedule, swam in the sea and went to visit an amazing island and traditional vietnamese floating boat-villages by small motorboat.

My favorite cruise was on the Irrawaddy river in Burma. The boat was rather small, perhaps 20 cabins, a beautiful traditional wheel boat that slowly passed through the most magnificent landscapes.  Only an other Canadian gentleman was on the cruise. For hours on end we would watch the local life, get fish from the fishermen, eat on deck... time had stopped ... I felt as one of the characters in George Orwell Burmese Days, a favorite novel which inspired me to take my family to Burma.  Not much had changed since...

I would suggest to anyone to once in their life, visit Burma, an extraordinary beautiful country. 

On deck at sunrise, with my sons

I pack VERY light! Washable items only, sunglasses, a hat, walking shoes, flipflops and my invaluable Prada flats in black, and silver. For this type of fairly exotic traveling, I tend to wear khaki pants or shorts with a white shirt and great belt.

In the evening I love to wear long printed cotton dresses. I tend to collect them from various countries, djellabahs from Marrakesh, Indian Saris, great dresses from Callypso.

A Bientot,


My Interieurs Design Studio website will be soon launching.... are you looking for a designer? Check out our

Please check out "By Invitation Only" members' posts....always inspiring

Monday, March 24, 2014

Parisian style

Ines De La Fressange

So often, I am asked to define parisian style… I am indeed not from Paris but from the South West of France, but spent a great deal of time during holidays in Paris, at my family's apartment overlooking the Parc de Vincennes. A few things have stayed with me from my early education…always be polite, have good manners, be assured of yourself, be cultured and well read, know when it is your turn to talk, dress as you please but make sure it is chic, have a natural look. I guess my mother did a good job as to this days, those simple rules are ingrained in my brain and apply to my design affinities.

For most editors, Ines de La Fressange is the aristocrat of chic with impeccable taste and style.

A parisian apartment is rarely contrived, does not follow a design formula. In France, we tend to be more conservative, inheriting family furniture and houses are lived in from generations to generations. Traditionally, the french furnish and design their apartment or houses themselves and occasionally with the help of their antiquaire, dealer or designer. We are not scared to be bold, buy on impulse , mix grand mother's buffet  with a fabulous mid century chaise and a great lamp found in a flee market. We tend to tell a story by juxtapositioning the pieces we love, we design for ourselves , rooms that are comfortable, interesting and truly reflect the personality of who lives in the space. A few must… a library, great wine, carpets, some old and some new and an open door… for friends to pop in and say hello, laughs over cocktail, and serious political conversations with cognac and cigars…

Living in Connecticut for the past 20 years, my house is always open and ready for friends, I still have my great great grand mother's armoire and the house is filled with personal travel treasures, art, furnitures of contemporary as eclectic style. A house in which my sons are just at ease as we are, well lived, constantly evolving and being an integral part of our lives.

A Bientot,


Thursday, March 20, 2014

Interieurs Design Studio Celebrates at the 2014 Luxe Gold List Honoree Fête

Interieurs is very proud to be among the top interior designers, architects, custom home builders and landscape architects from across 50 states who gathered in New York City to celebrate the 2nd Annual Luxe Interiors Design 2014 Gold List in New York City. The celebration was followed by a honoree and sponsor breakfast in Luxe's newly opened Global Headquarters in New York's iconic Time & Life building. To view Interieurs' Gold List cover click here.!&utm_source=YMLP&utm_term=View+this+email+online

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