Cottage Living Room Concept - Faudree Influence
I have been wandering about the internet from fabric site to fabric site shopping. I have what I refer to as DADD; Design Attention Deficit Disorder. Squirrel! I find a fabric, fall smitten, design a room around that fabric, while wandering about looking for a coordinating fabric - I fall smitten with a fabric...repeat. Before I know it I have pages of concepts. I've travelled so far down the proverbial rabbit hole I'm catching myself designing concepts in colors I could never live with - Help! I decided to take a look back at someone who greatly influence me.
Growing up in Fort Worth while being infatuated with interior design I fell smitten to a specific Interior Designer from Tulsa, Charles Faudree. During the mid 1980's he was the go to designer of the DFW area. Soon, he became an award wining master of interiors whose influence reached worldwide. This girl from Fort Worth was forever inspired with the soft spoken master of design. Faudree had a comfortable style; mixing fabrics including checks and toile paired with English, also French antiques, a blend of rustic with refined, then topped by layers of found objects. I have each book he wrote, every magazine he appeared in and often find myself with my nose deeply within their pages, analyzing every detail. Young and in design school at the time, his aesthetic was often recognizable in my projects. I came to adore all things French, learned to mix textures, patterns, rustic with refined, dreamed of following within his footprints. Isn't it interesting how a person you've never met can have such an impact upon you? He's long since passed, yet his legacy of work continues to influence people today. If you haven't met him, please allow me to introduce you through this Traditional Home Magazine Christmas layout of his cabin, then located just outside Tulsa, it remains my favorite of his many homes -
Charles Faudree with his companion, Nicholas Photo Credit Traditional Home Magazine
Photo Credit Traditional Home Magazine
The upper walls are dressed in Pierre Frey Petite Parc a gorgeous cotton, linen blend toile featuring flowers and birds. He paired the wall covering with a stripe on the French side chairs, a large check on the French armchairs flanking the fireplace then added another linear pattern in the drapes. A hint of gold in the drapery rings, then again upon the candelier suspended above a rustic iron based table filled with books, florals and found objects creates the Faudree magic. The ceilings beams are one of my favorite details in this space; a mix of natural and painted rather than one or the other creates more interest upon the ceiling.
Photo Credit Traditional Home Magazine
In the main living space the cathedral ceiling and wood floors are again finished in a wash of white. Fabric choices are continued in this space to create continuity. This is the first time I saw a seagrass rug, the texture is beautiful and speaks to the rustic chippy finish upon many of the French antiques. I adored the Dutch door and longed for my own one day. I studied his furniture plan; he created small pockets of furniture a game space, alongside the windows two chairs paired with a small table is the perfect place for a cup of coffee and moment of reflection, the center conversation area surrounds the fireplace, while the dining area includes a bench alongside the dining table. He punctuated the space with a large antique heirloom quality French tapestry. I'd never seen a tapestry paired with chippy furniture, cotton/linen fabrics and seagrass before, for me it was sure perfection. It appears as though Nicholas agrees. If you'd like to read more about Charles Faudree and his cabin click here.
The fireplace wall of the conversation area. Photo Credit Traditional Home Magazine.
When Mr. GDC and I stepped into the cottage the little voice in my head screamed "This is it, your Charles Faudree house!". (I hope everyone else has a little voice in their head and I'm not the only one.) Within those first few steps, I fell as smitten with this cottage as I had years ago with Charles Faudree, I knew this was my opportunity to attempt a channeling of his aesthetic into our own cottage. Instantly I said "Full price, whatever the owner wants!", our elated Realtor broke into giggles, she knew she had found me a rare find, a house that spoke to my heart. So much for artful negotiation!
Now that we are here, I've had my nose poised once again in my collection of frayed and worn Charles Faudree books. Timidly, I've put together four concept pages under his influence, striving to channel just a glint of his brilliance while remaining true to our family style.
On a budget, I plan to keep most of our furniture, refinishing or recovering as needed. I long for a space that has texture, interest, a collected feel and of course speaks French - similar to those magical Faudree spaces.
No 1: Neutral color scheme grounded with black. I chose two toile, a damask and traditional floral to combine with a few more modern geometric fabric patterns. This scheme is along the thought of the new modern traditional. The black providing a more contemporary, modern edge, while the toiles and check define the room as French. I could easily add a pair of black/white modern paintings to juxtapose the antique tapestry fragments.
No 2: The choices here create a shaded color scheme; brick and wine fabrics paired with taupe to bring in our main upholstered pieces. These fabrics are mostly traditional with just a hint of modern in the circle patterned fabrics. I repeated the circle idea in the drapery border, the dot velvet pillow, the taupe geometric and the lower right corner circle brick fabric. This selection is a return to color.
No. 3: The choices here are somewhat monochromatic with shades of navy paired with taupe. All fabrics in this collection are traditional with two having a slight chinoiserie feel. The toile, chinoiserie, also check fabrics speak French in the scheme.
No 4: This concept is most neutral with shades of grey, taupe and camel. Here I chose a selection of traditional, geometric, modern, and casual patterns. This scheme relies upon pattern and texture to create interest. This space would be an eclectic, quiet, layered room, with art becoming the focal point. The toile, damask and traditional floral create an underlying French feel.
What do you think? Do any of these concept pages appeal to you? If you'd be so kind as to leave me a comment, I would greatly appreciate it. I'm curious to learn your thoughts. I'll be pondering in hope of coming to a decision. I like each concept for different reasons. Any of the four would work well for the living room. Perhaps since I haven't an obvious choice, the search should continue. Honestly, I'd like to move forward rather than - squirrel! I am hopelessly fabric fickle.
Until next time, wishing you all the best -