reviving charm blog

The Pink House Outside Paris

It’s been a challenge to find time to write a proper post since we’ve been back from our Fall trip to Italy. Today is a good day to break my silence. After seeing this home online at Architectural Digest I knew I immediately had to share it with you. It is the home of Jason Basmajian, CEO of the esteemed menswear line, Cerruti. Basmajian is a Boston native but now lives in London. This is Basmajian’s country home located outside of Paris that serves as his weekend retreat. I love that he maintained the home’s original antique, rosy hue. Isn’t it beautiful? The interior was remodeled and required the installation of new bathrooms in the attic space since the original home had none. Creature comforts!

I left all the creaks in the floors and wanted to keep the old house’s sensitivity, but with all the modern comforts. –Jason Basmajian

a twostory pink stone house with trees around it

The Queen Anne sofa is from Basmajian's mother recovered in a Loro Piana linen. The other sofa is from Christian Liagre....

The vintage lamp at left is from Flair in Florence and the ceramic sculpture is by local French artist Nadia Pasquer....

Everyones favorite room in fashion designer Jason Basmajian's house near Paris the Farrow and Ballpainted library. The...

Belgian gray stone floors and the original staircase. Basmajian replaced one of the walls with glass panels to let the...

This room was previously the refectory and is now the central room of the house connecting the terrace to the front...

We play cards and board games out here on summer evenings and have afternoon tea in the autumn Basmajian says. The...

I wanted a soothing calm bedroom and colors that didnt compete with the nature outside he says. The wall paint is Farrow...

Also in the master bedroom the staircase was copied from an original in the house and was added to lead up to the master...

Under the only dormer in the house and with a great view out the little window an extra deep tub with a stone surround....

A pretty window seat located in one of the two upstairs guest rooms. The kilim pillows were brought back from a trip to...

Weather permitting there is lots of outdoor dining. Basmajian created this outdoor area as an extension of the house it...

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Beauty of the (Italian) Afterlife

I promised that I would share pictures from our most recent Italian vacation. I am starting to make good on that promise although I do still need to put together a proper post. I’m working on it…I swear. I am continuing to sift through thousands of pictures but I did manage to gather a few that are most appropriate for today, Halloween, the spookiest of all holidays.

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When it comes to traveling, I have found that one of the most exciting ways to get to know a city is to simply get lost and enjoy new discoveries that literally cross your path. As Mr. B and I wandered throughout Milan on one particular day, we took note of a building off in the distance due to its beauty and scale. We continued to walk toward it hoping to learn more. It turns out that the building that caught our attention is part of Milan’s most well-known cemetery, Monument Cemetery (Cimitero Monumentale in Italian). Our curiosity led us past the gates and into one of the City’s largest cemetery’s developed in 1886.

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We ventured inside only to discover an open-air market with a treasure trove of art and architectural monuments. As we strolled the grounds, it was immediately evident that some of the most notable artists and architects were commissioned to build beautiful, grand structures to mark the location of where some of the most wealthy and elite Italians have been laid to rest.

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All iPhone images by Reviving Charm.

Italy travel_reviving charm

GREETINGS FROM ITALY

Buongiorno! Mr. B and I have been enjoying travels through Northern Italy. Traveling during this time of year is great because the crowds generally die down a bit and the weather is usually more tolerable. Unfortunately, we couldn’t escape the higher temperatures and it’s been in the mid 80 degrees in Turin, where we are currently staying. Another advantage for traveling during this time of year is that the prices are typically more reasonable. For me, that means hoping to buy more souvenirs with the money we save.

I took thousands of pictures on our Italian trip last year and realize that I never shared any with you. I recently went through all of last year’s pictures and created this small photo montage highlighting the architectural features, design details and the natural beauty that capture the essence of Italy.

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I have one very special post scheduled while I’m away and I promise to do a recap post of my current trip when I’m back. I’m also looking forward to posting more regularly. Fall is approaching and I’m feeling inspired. In the meantime, follow along on Instagram.

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Shall I Spell It Out For You?

I just realized that I haven’t written any articles dealing with curb appeal since “Naming A Home”, which I posted in 2015. When it comes to curb appeal, one shouldn’t overlook details such as doorbell or mailbox design because they are such an easy way to reinforce the style and character of your home. Another way to do so is by the way you choose to deal with address numbers. They are obviously functional, but can also be stylish.

I’ll admit to not loving the address numbers we inherited when we bought our house over five years ago but after scouring the internet I haven’t found anything suitable to replace them with. I always thought that when we got around to replacing our address numbers that we’d select something that you’d typically find in New England. I had my heart set on ordering something from the Chatham Sign Shop until I recently realized how much I love the look of script/cursive address numbers. In the end, I’m not sure which style will win out. Since we aren’t looking to redo the exterior of our home until perhaps next summer I have a bit of time to decide and it really will depend on the extent of renovations we do to the home. In the meantime, let’s explore a few examples together. script address sign_reviving charm 2

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I’ve seen vinyl and painted options but I would definitely prefer to have the numbers fabricated from metal.
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The next three pictures are coincidently homes of a similar architectural style. Our home looks nothing like any of these but they make me want to paint our house white to give our ranch home more of a seaside cottage feel. I also really like how the numbers are actually spelled out. If I choose to go the script sign route, spelling out the numbers is probably the look I’d be going for. script address numbers_Reviving Charm

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Here’s an example of a thicker font. Personally, I prefer a thinner, more delicate looking font like the examples above. script address_reviving charm

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There are variations on a theme that also include a classic block letter which is also very nice.

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Actual spacing of the letters is also something to take into consideration. Spacing the letters closer together, as shown in the picture above, appears more formal than if they are spaced farther apart (below).

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So…what’s your preference when it comes it house numbering? 

getty center

A Night at the Museum: The Getty Center

Living in Los Angeles provides lots of cultural opportunities. We have some wonderful museums in Southern California but with L.A. being so spread out (urban sprawl!), I don’t get to visit my favorites much as I would like. It’s been a while since my last visit to The Getty and last weekend we decided to spend the evening at The Getty Center. There are actually two Getty museums in Southern California: The Getty Villa and The Getty Center. However, Californian’s often refer to them as “the one in Malibu” or  “the one on the hill”. Sometimes someone will refer to “the one on the hill” as “the new one” even though it isn’t actually all that new. In December it celebrated its 20th year anniversary…how time flies.

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To call The Getty Center “just another museum” is an understatement. It’s a series of Italian limestone buildings (16,000 tons of limestone, to be exact) that are perched on top of a hill that offers educational activities, conducts research, as well as play host to some of the best works of art in the world. The sculptural design of the complex is an architectural photographers dream. It was designed by famed architect Richard Meier and the geometric forms of the structures are so interesting that they often provide the most amazing contrast between light and shadow. If you love architectural photography then you won’t want to leave your camera at home. And If you enjoy art and architecture as much I do and are planning a visit to L.A., then The Getty Center should be on your list of places to visit. I  highly recommend The Getty Villa also.

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We arrived in the evening thinking that the daytime crowds would have died down and that we would have the galleries all to ourselves. We were completely wrong. The second we pulled into the driveway we immediately realized that half of LA. must have had the same idea. Once parked you can either walk hike up the hill a quarter mile to reach the museum or, alternatively, board a tram that will transport you directly to the top. The parking lot was full during our visit so they allowed us to park in an area at the top of the hill that eliminated the need to take the tram. Signage literally refers to it as “Top of the Hill Parking” and is only accessible through a secured area. It’s normally reserved for Benefactor’s, VIP’s, and the like but on this day it served as overflow parking and we scored the best parking spot ever. Once you’ve figured out your parking situation and get to the top of the hill, you reach a large arrival plaza. You immediately realize that this is no ordinary museum.

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It doesn’t take long to discover amazing views in almost every direction.

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Typical Saturday evening traffic on the 405 freeway heading into L.A.

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Don’t forget to look up!

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You can easily spend a few days visiting The Getty Center if you want to experience all that it has to offer. Most people don’t have that kind of time so it is best to plan your visit to ensure you don’t miss what interests you the most. We had the intent of only staying a couple of hours to visit “Icons of Style: A Century of Fashion Photography: 1911-2011”, a temporary exhibit through October 21, 2018.

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You wouldn’t necessarily realize this from my pictures but this gallery was uncomfortably crowded. This is a wildly popular exhibit but I was just lucky enough to get a few pictures without a ton of people.

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Richard Avedon, 1950

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Louis Faurer, Negative 1972 & Print 1991

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Neil Barr, 1968

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David Seidner, 1986

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Scott Schuman (aka “The Sartorialist”), 2011

The French and Italian decorative arts galleries are my favorites in any museum and The Getty is no exception. I get nervous handwashing a glass in the kitchen sink for fear of breaking it so it always amazes me how some antique glass stays beautifully intact with no chips or cracks.

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I hope you enjoyed my post about my quick visit to The Getty Center. If you need me today, I can be found at the Norton Simon Museum in Pasadena, CA. I’m looking forward to seeing the lithographs of American artist Ellsworth Kelly on display through October 29, 2018.

marine lair la jolla california

Marine Lair

I love stalking real estate listings for places that I travel to and since we are in La Jolla, California I thought I’d share “Marine Lair” with you today. The 3,124 square foot home with 3 bedrooms and 4.5 baths is situated on a tiny 2,560 square foot lot located directly across the street from the beach. The home was built by Andrew Canter, the 34-year-old owner of Canter Companies and real estate investment banker, who spared no expense in designing and building a contemporary beach home (and bachelor pad…he’s single) in one of Southern California’s premier oceanfront communities.

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Andrew Canter at Marine Lair

Canter put his development team to the test by informing them that his vision and “…concept was to create something rare and extraordinary in every aspect of the design.” The home is very sculptural in nature and incorporates carefully curated rugged and exotic materials, such as koa wood veneer harvested from Hilo, Hawaii. This isn’t surprising coming from an owner working with a craftsman who spent a lot of time building boats. It feels like a little jewel box on the beach and it can be all yours for $11.8 million. If you don’t have access to that much cash don’t worry…the seller is accepting bitcoin.

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Off to San Francisco

Mr. B and I are off to San Francisco for the next few days to celebrate his birthday. This weekend is all about Mr. B and doing the things he wants to do so tonight we’ll be having dinner at Cafe Claude. It’s a small French bistro tucked away off an alley-like street known as “Claude Lane”. We’ve been to the restaurant only once before but remember enjoying it. It was basic but good. I’ve been a bit MIA on IG but I promise to post if you wish to follow along to see what we stumble upon and what else we have planned. In the meantime, enjoy this poem about San Francisco by George Sterling.

The winds of the Future wait
At the iron walls of her Gate,
And the western ocean breaks in thunder,
And the western stars go slowly under,
And her gaze is ever West
In the dream of her young unrest.
Her sea is a voice that calls,
And her star a voice above,
And her wind a voice on her walls —
My cool, grey city of love.        — George Sterling

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A Bulgari Riad: A Sophisticated Jewel Box of Color

The Bulgari name is synonymous with fine Italian jewelry dating back to the 1800’s and their exquisite pieces have garnered them worldwide brand recognition. Their beautiful jewels have been worn by the rich and famous and I won’t be surprised to see some their gemstone pieces show up on the red carpet tomorrow night for the Oscars (will you be watching?). Even artists took note of the fine jewelry house with Andy Warhol once saying, “For me, calling at Bulgari’s shop is like visiting the best exhibition of contemporary art.” I have oohed and ahhed inside their store so I can’t say I would disagree with that statement.

The family of Maite and Paolo Bulgari, the great-grandson of Bulgari’s founder, recently opened up their family home to be featured in the recent issue of Galerie Magazine. It took five years to build the two-story, seven bedroom Marrakech riad that is overflowing with exquisite details and fine quality craftsmanship (oh, those amazing ceilings!). They called upon Pablo Paniagua, a designer from Madrid, Spain, to create a home that “embraces the local culture while avoiding a predictable ye olde Marrakech look.” I’m typically not big on color in my own home but the Bulgari home is a sophisticated jewel box of color that is definitely something I could find myself living in. You can read more about it here.

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A Winter Wonderland in the Eternal City

As someone who was born and raised in Southern California, I must admit that I am intrigued by the beauty of snowfall. When I learned that there was a rare snowfall yesterday in Rome (the heaviest they’ve seen in 6 years), I knew I had to share some of the beautiful images of the Eternal City draped in winter white. Doesn’t this historic city look lovely? Just when you thought Rome couldn’t get any more beautiful…

The snow is falling
The traffic is crawling
The world looks all calm and bright
If only for a moment everything looks pure under the freshly fallen snow and the glow emitted by the first snowfall of the season
My mood is happy I hope it lasts all season and throughout the new year too.  –Ann M. Johnson

Statue of St. Peter

St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican

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The Spanish Steps

Piazza del Popolo

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The Roman Forum

The Colosseum

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The Trevi Fountain

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NEWPORT BEACH: LIDO MARINA VILLAGE

Lido Marina Village in Newport Beach, CA (the land of wealth and beautiful people) had their grand opening in Fall 2016. It’s a hop, skip, and a jump from our seaside ranch home but it wasn’t until this week that Mr. B and I finally paid a visit to one of Newport’s newest coastal shopping destinations. We had great weather with beautiful blue skies on the day we visited. It turned out to be a perfect day to stroll the area and explore the stylish mix of sophisticated shops set in a charming environment positioned right on Newport Bay. The overall design of the village is unique for California because it feels like something you’d find on the East Coast as opposed to Orange County. We all know how fond I am of the East Coast so perhaps that’s one of the reasons I enjoyed my visit so much. Lido Marina Village is home to some great shops such as Warby Parker, Serena & Lily, Le Labo, Alchemy Works, Clare V., Sugar Paper, and more. For more information and a complete list of shops and eateries, be sure to check out their website. If you plan to be in the area, be sure to check out Lido Marina Village for yourself. I know I’ll be back since I’m looking forward to the opening of Malibu Farm restaurant later this year.

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