The book I worked on with interior designer Charlotte Moss came out and it looks fantastic! (Hint, hint if you’re looking for any last-minute Christmas gifts…) A Visual Life is about Charlotte’s passion for scrapbooking, which may sound hokey and crafty, but she elevates the topic, as only Charlotte can, with the previously unpublished scrapbooks of famous women such as Gloria Vanderbilt and Jackie O. My favorite part is the essays by contemporary women, like Vogue editor Candy Pratts Price, who talk about how and why they scrapbook. Pinterest is great but books last. My daughter probably won’t ever see my Pinterest boards but she will inherit our family albums.
Never have I been so excited to see a book cover in my life! I’m thrilled to share the news about Charlotte Moss’s upcoming book – her eighth – which I worked on with the legendary interior designer. And I’m in good company: Wall Street Journal Magazine editor Deborah Needleman, Vogue editor Candy Pratts Price, former Town & Country editor Pamela Fiori, interior designer Alexa Hampton and Washington philanthropist Deeda Blair all contributed essays. The subject is Moss finding inspiration from her personal scrapbooks and notebooks, as well as those of stylish women throughout history including Jackie Kennedy and Elsie de Wolfe. As with anything I’ve done for Charlotte, I walked away with a wealth of new knowledge and deepened respect for this hard-working, intelligent and creative woman.
“A Visual Life” hits bookstores on Oct. 9 but is available for pre-order now.
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What a nice surprise to get this cute Do Not Disturb sign in the mail from our friend, Paul Vogel, a bookbinder in East Hampton. I met Paul and has wife Abigail a couple of years ago when I wrote about their awesomely antiquated bookbinding business for designer Charlotte Moss. What fun to have a P.V. original! Thanks Paul and Abigail!
Last night I attended an elegant book signing for prolific interior designer Charlotte Moss’ latest book, “Charlotte Moss Decorates,” her seventh to date.
Moss is one of those inspirational women who seems to do it all, well. She has a thriving career with big-name clients such as Michael Bloomberg, she writes, lectures, licenses products and is a dedicated volunteer to several arts organizations including the New York City Ballet. I got to know Charlotte when I wrote about her for Richmond Home.
Moss’ new book is a gorgeous, 200-pager examining 11 of the rooms she created for designer showhouses. Since there were no clients involved, these may be her most personal projects. She walks the reader through her inspiration from Lee Raziwell’s multi-patterned living room to West Wycombe Park, a Palladian country house in England. Moss is an avid scrap-booker so she also shows spreads of the clippings, photos and other elements that inspired her rooms.
Here’s a peek into the party…
I spent a lovely afternoon with Paul and Abigail Vogel in their East Hampton, New York studio, Vogel Bindery, to learn about the art of custom book binding for a story I wrote for CharlotteMoss.com. Here’s an excerpt:
After studying art at New York’s Pratt Institute, Paul Vogel spent several years in Europe where he came across the still-very-much-alive practice of book binding. To extend his stay in Britain, he took a job working alongside a binder, learning the skills he’d later use to launch his own bindery in Manhattan in 1980. Two of his earliest clients were Harper Collins and the Forbes family and he’s been filling elaborate custom orders for individuals, book dealers and publishers ever since.
“Paul is a most extraordinary bookbinder, perhaps the best in America,” says book dealer Kinsey Marable. “I only use Paul, from binding a client’s high-school scrapbook to building leather boxes to individually house and conserve an entire Pulitzer Prize collection.”
Vogel says he’s constantly posed with fresh challenges, and he enjoys the satisfaction of coming up with creative solutions; maybe it’s incorporating objects into a book one day and creating elaborate leather inlay cover designs the next. “It’s one of the few instances of work where you have a beginning, middle, and you’re actually holding the finished product at the end. And it all happens in our studio,” he says. And unlike other careers in art, “It’s not theoretical; these books will be used and handled for generations.”
Read the rest of the story at CharlotteMoss.com.
About a month ago, I visited mega-decorator Charlotte Moss in her Upper East Side brownstone to interview her for R.Home magazine. What fun! She was lovely and incredibly schooled on design history. She made me want to lock myself in her library until I’d finished reading all of the gorgeous design books lining her shelves. Like most successful people, Moss has obviously done her homework in life. And she isn’t afraid to pull from the past — and admit she’s doing it. She takes her favorite elements from famous women of style and synthesizes them into something entirely her own, that’s elegant, detailed, and always comfortable.
I asked Charlotte to explain this nook in the bedroom she designed for the ”Designers Visions at The Laurel” decorator’s showhouse in which apartments were sponsored by magazines in The Laurel apartment building in New York. Moss decorated an apartment in the high rise for Veranda and it appeared on their cover in November. After hearing her answer, I think this photo is a great example of the level of detail in her work. Continue reading