I am pleased to have written the foreword for Gaye Tapp’s book, How They Decorated. “How They Decorated is an invitation to enter the enchanting worlds of sixteen women—to experience their circles of influence and the results of their time spent at the altar of elegance, comfort, and beauty. Sybarites and weavers of dreams, they speak a common language.”
“Like sixteen novelettes, these women’s stories are bound by a similar narrative— one of loyalty, tenacity, generosity, hospitality, and so much more. There is a thin red thread that connects each woman between these covers. I am not talking about similarities in style, but undeniable commonalities in terms of character between all of these diverse personalities. A strong identity, a distinct point of view, a sense of humor—some wicked, some reckless, some drier than a perfect martini (shaken not stirred)—as well as determination, discipline, and drive.
“True elegance never swims with the tide; it never follows fashion. Elegance surveys current styles, carefully selects, and adapts, leaving no trace of a trend or a must-have of the season, like the vanishing vapor trail of a jet plane.”
“Once inside your nest, what does a visitor see, touch, feel, and smell? When he or she leaves, what resonates? It is in our nature to put a stamp on our surroundings, to leave an imprint of our personality on our rooms and our houses. When this process has been imbued with heart, soul, and emotion—with what is personal, with the true spirit and DNA of the inhabitant—the resulting creation exudes a joie de vivre that gives joy in its lifetime and sometimes long after.”
“Whether exotic, urbane, cerebral, literary, or social, each of the subjects in How They Decorated moved to the beat of her own drum; yet their lives have all stirred our own in some way. There is no single formula. There is no single style.”
“These women made us think then; they make us think now. Thank God for them all.”
Excerpts from Gaye Tapp’s How They Decorated, Charlotte Moss’s introduction, Rizzoli 2017.
In stores April 11.
“Surround oneself with the things you love and your house will make you happy…” Lesley Blanch