“Inspired by the historic Martinique Palm Print of The Beverly Hills Hotel (and perhaps even Blanche’s Boudoir on The Golden Girls) I freshened up our small screened sitting porch at The Richmond.”
I have always been a huge fan of the iconic 1940s palm print. The version most lauded is the one developed for The Beverly Hills Hotel. The iconic Martinique Wallpaper Pattern was specified by the property’s interior designer Don Loper in 1942 for use down the long corridors and in the iconic hotel coffee shop (pictured left). In the 1980s the print made an appearance on TV’s The Golden Girls – used as wallcovering and bedding in Blanche’s bedroom (see image below – anytime Hollywood Regency and 80’s Miami intersect – one has to take note.) And in the early 90s it swathed the walls of the A-list Greenwich Village hot spot Indochine to a super-chic effect.
The small screened in porch off of our living room has become a favorite summer gathering spot at The Richmond. Many a cocktail and tête–à–tête have occurred on the striped wrought iron sofa. This spring I noticed that the furnishings were beginning to look a bit ragged – so I decided to give the porch a little TLC. First up was finding a print to reupholster the Vintage 1950s Wingback (my chair). This is when the iconic stylings of the Beverly Hills hotel came to mind. I looked at the licensed Martinique Fabric used at the property – available through Designer Wallcoverings and Fabrics (they also sell the wallpaper). Sadly, they don’t make an outdoor version. So after a bit more hunting I found a virtual twin – “Swaying Palms” from Tommy Bahama (I know).I wanted the space to feel old school, preppy, and comfortable (channeling two of my favorite muses – Albert Hadley and Brooke Astor). For that reason I decided to make it tightly coordinated and use only two fabrics – the Swaying Palm Print and Black and White Awning Stripe Sunbrella. The custom cushion for the existing round rattan chair, and coordinating throw pillows, were all made in the Palm Print. And to convey a retro cabana feel, everything, including the wingback, was piped in Canvas White Sunbrella.
I ordered a few great accents pieces from Wisteria – a favorite on-line resource. The Indian Rings Ceramic Stool in white (pictured above) as a side table for the wingback, and a pair of Nautical Rope Lanterns for the Vintage Bamboo Coffee Table (which was found at a local thirft store).
To add just a bit of contrast, but stay on plan, I added Wide Awning Stripe Accent Pillows from Pottery Barn to the rattan chair and sofa. The stripe is just a bit broader than that used for the Sofa – but they are still made from Black and White Sunbrella.
The end result is just as I hoped it would be. Cluby and cozy. A favorite spot for everyone. Especially our brand new puppy Loretta.