Dorothy Draper, drafty houses, pink bathrooms — and coffee: Friday link love

Friday-Link-Love-logo250A new weekly feature: Friday Link Love. As jammed as the interwebs are with link bait (deceptive headlines leading to useless content) and scrapers (sites that try to survive by copying others’ original content), there certainly are gems — true reporters and creators of unique original content — out there. Every couple of Fridays, I’ll spotlight a few, including from tips I may get from readers. And most assuredly, I won’t show you anything that looks like gravy (!) — (read on and you’ll understand…)

#1 — Pink Bathrooms: “Get with the program, people!”

  • pink-bathroom-leo-carilloPink Bathrooms: Hot or not? I think that the Bergen Record thinks they are!  — Reporter Kathy Lynn wrote a great story, including input from a long interview with Defender o’ The Pink aka me.


#2 — “Unchanging blandness seems to depress the human soul”

Designers and homeowners need to remember that it is sometimes OK to live in an imperfect house — one that feels a little hot in July and a little cold and drafty in January. In fact, this type of imperfect house might be more affordable (or even “greener”) than an expensive Passivhaus…. If you take this approach, you might discover that your imperfect house is fine just the way it is.


#3 and #4 — Dorothy Draper: “Show me nothing that looks like gravy!”

  • Dorothy Draper Library of Congress photoThe Wall Street Journal recently wrote about Dorothy Draper (I’m sending you to the google page – it’s the first story — a trick that crafty Colleen discovered gets us behind the paywall) — one of the 20th Century’s most influential interior designers, including during the postwar era. Reporter David Colman points out that there is not just one definition of mid-century design: Draper shrugged off restrained “gray-scale elegance” and instead, designed in “Technicolor Colonial.”He visited The Greenbrier, one of her colorful tours de force, and said:

A century ago, people came to “take the waters” for their rheumatism—but today, victims of seasonal affective disorder should come and take the colors.

Well, Dorothy wasn’t a minimalist, by any means. She used to say in her magnificent way, “Show me nothing that looks like gravy!” No fabrics that look beige, gray or mousy or gravy-like.

I take great (colorful) comfort that the great DD would agree with me re: today’s drab Greige Nation.


# 5 — I love coffee, yes, I do!

    1. Pam Kueber says:

      Hi Ronda, I’m not sure what you’re asking about exactly – you can share a link to the photo if you post it on a photo-sharing platform – or contact me using the contact form at the bottom of the page.

  1. Jay says:

    I sat down Saturday afternoon to look at the Phila. Inquirer’s Home and Design section and saw an article on PINK BATHROOMS and thought wow another story. I laughed when I saw that the article was imported from the Bergen Record; the very same article you linked to.

    1. pam kueber says:

      Yes, the Bergen Record story was then syndicated… I’ve seen it pop up in several other newspapers already. Glad to hear it made it to Philly, too! That’s big!

  2. doris dear says:

    Miss Draper was amazing. Her best work was here in NYC. I even talk about Miss draper in my show “Doris Dear’s Gurl Talk” at Don’t Tell Mama’s in NYC! She designed one of the most beautiful spaces in NYC at the Metropolitan Museum here. It was called the “Dorotheum Restaurant” It was downstairs, had a large reflecting pool with water sprites dancing across it, large oversized birdcage chandeliers overhead and was a perfect mid-century modern space. Unfortunately they demolished it and turned it into a gallery. She also did the amazing Fairmont in San Fran. Check out a few slides of her work here: http://www.architecturaldigest.com/architecture/archive/draper_slideshow_item1_2

  3. ineffablespace says:

    You have to remember the context in which Dorothy Draper and Elsie De Wolfe recommended painting furniture. They grew up in the late Victorian/Edwardian period where furniture tended to be overwrought and dark and rooms were crammed full of layers of pattern, furniture and accessories. The painting was a reaction to that. Elsie De Wolfe said late in her career that she regretted recommending painting so much Victorian furniture white.

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