Thursday, June 20, 2013

Parrish Paradise - Jen's Enchanting Abode

Jen Parrish is a phenomenal jewelry artist with a keen eye for all things beautiful and enchanting.  It should come as no surprise, then, that her own home is about as Domythic a space as they come, and utterly magical.  She shared a few images of her bedroom, each more gorgeous than the last!

Two Parrish Relics above.

What's your favorite part of your bedroom?

I love the original tin ceilings, the little pillowed reading corner. There used to be bookshelves there but I took them down to drape fabric that was the same color as the walls and piled the books in a corner where I could access them better. It was a challenge moving David’s bureau into an already tiny room but somehow we made it all work.

Beautiful bags above were embroidered by Medieval Muse and similar styles are available on her Etsy.

Do you have any advice to share on building a collection of treasures and making it look so inherently enchanting? 

Ignore the “rules” and go with your emotions, surround yourself with things that make you happy or remind you of what you love out in the world. Favorite colors, textures, prints. I do like the suggestion of creating visual pyramids or triangles, and try to do that with surface decorating and sometimes on the walls as well.

What's your cat Galatea's favorite part of the room?

Galatea's favorite spot is on the bureau, particularly when we let Shadow up each night to try to get them used to each other.  She loves sitting in the windows, watching the birds and the world go by. Any sunny spots. Her cardboard scratching box, surrounded by pink toys (her favorite!).

What are some of your favorite resources?

Thrift stores, yard sales, sometimes Homegoods. Loved their clearance section for damaged “parts and pieces” that I can work into something else or just hang on the wall “as is”. Many of my most cherished things are gifts from friends or my mother who is an antique dealer and knows my taste very well by now, and I’m very grateful! 

Interior Alchemy by Rebecca Purcell is a huge inspiration and I learned to see fabric as a great tool to divide rooms or create warmth within a space through her book. I also love The Stencilled Home for wall painting magic

Framed postcard on the wall above is by Cynthia Staples and available here along with Burne-Jones designs here.

More Sources:

After nearly a lifetime of collecting, I have stopped completely (ok, maybe a few books here and there) until we move to a bigger house in a few years. This one is packed! Ebay is another good source obviously, as you can enter any particular search term that interests you…”William Morris” and “Gothic Revival” were always my favorites to plug in and see what treasures pop up! You never know when or where you will find something wonderful. I went to yard sales last year with my mother to try and find a bookshelf and exactly the right one was waiting for me, along with a gorgeous lion headed writing desk and the huge framed print of Waterhouse’s “Lady of Shalott” that now lives on the wall opposite the bed. All at one sale! That was an exciting, car-filling stop

Thank you so much, Jen, for sharing your extraordinarily inspiring home with us!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Domythic Mythic Fiction

So I'm just going to assume here that all or at least most of us who frequent this blog like to read.  I mean, Domythic style is all about making your home seem more like a story, fairy tale, or myth.  I will go a step further and presume that many of us have a predisposal toward mythic fiction authors and stories, like those of  Neil Gaiman, Charles de Lint, etc.

But what about Domythic Mythic Fiction?  Sounds a bit repetitive doesn't it?  But it's true...all mythic fiction might be a wonderful genre, but not every book is set in a domestic environment in which the house and its contents and homely magic feature prominently.

I thought it might be fun to recommend a few that do!

I've been on a kick lately for magic realism authors who set their stories squarely in a believably modern world setting, but then twist it just a slight bit to create enchanting results.  Namely the books of Alice Hoffman are like this, although sometimes she has a tendency to put her characters through the wringer a bit more than I can easily handle.  Two books by her I would recommend for Domythic Mythic Fiction are...

Practical Magic

You knew this one would be on the list, didn't you?  The women of the Owens family are so squarely set in their magical home in their magical New England town.

The Red Garden

Don't worry, Game of Thrones fans...this is NOT like the Red Wedding.  This enchanting book has a series of short stories that take you time traveling through the same small patch of land in the same Massachusetts town, as homes are built there, stories are told there.  The common thread is a small garden on the property where only red plants can grow.

A handful of years ago when newly released, I stumbled on the first novel of an author who intrigued me.  Now she has become my enchanting little ace in the hole whenever a patron at the library where I work asks for a book suggestion.  Her work is very Hoffman-like, but unceasingly optimistic, enchanting and marvelous.  I cannot recommend her highly enough.  Her name is Sarah Addison Allen, and all of her books are utterly Domythic, starting with...

Garden Spells

Stick with me here...if you've read or seen Practical Magic, the plot of  this book might at first seem rather familiar, but Addison Allen makes it entirely her own.  It's the story of, again, a magical house, a magical family, and two sisters who have to learn to deal with their abilities.  The apple tree makes it.  Just read.

The Sugar Queen

This is possibly my favorite book by Addison Allen.  It was with this book that I discovered one of her signature features to her books is to have a non-person character who charms you.  In this's books.  An utterly Domythic house shows up midway through the book too.

The Girl Who Chased the Moon this fast read (almost a novella instead of a novel) it's a wallpaper that changes with your mood.

The Peach Keeper

is Addison Allen's newest book, and a little less Domythic than the others, not featuring a home that enchants with magic, but is still worth a read.

I have many more recommendations and will be posting them, but I also want to hear your suggestions too.  What contemporary fiction books have you read that featured Domythic settings and enchanting homey spaces?