APR 29th

How To Vacation Like A Millionaire

Let’s say you are William Vanderbilt,  J.P Morgan or William Rockefeller…where do you go to get away from it all?

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog- Jekyll Island

Same place as the Vermillion Family—Jekyll Island, Georgia.  You can too since there is a wonderful hotel here–The Jekyll Island Club Hotel.  We have been staying here since we got married and although the trip has changed a bit since we had the Beans, we always return home refreshed and happy.

The history is incredible–basically the financial and industrial powerhouses of the 1880′s got together and bought the island as a winter retreat in 1886.  It would become a place where the likes of Joseph Pulitzer, Marshall Field and Edwin Gould would not only hunt, enjoy lavish Gilded Age meals and take in the Golden Isles breezes but also a place where these empire builders could meet over brandy and cigars in the club.  Between visits from President McKinley and other dignitaries, to the first meeting to form the Federal Reserve, Jekyll Island boasts a rich and spirited past.

After the Great Depression things weren’t the same for the descendants of the original members and by World War II the club had fallen into disrepair and the entire island was sold to the state of Georgia.  Sad for them, but fantastic for us little people who now get to enjoy what they created.

The first time I came here I about fell over and then fell in love.  See, these millionaires wanted spaces of their own.  So they built some cottages for their families, their servants and their guests.  The club was built to not only host dinners and events but also for overflow guests and members who didn’t build their own cottages.

When you think of “cottages”….do you think of this?

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog-Moss Cottage, Jekyll Island GA

The Moss Cottage- Built in 1896 in the shingle style, by William Strothers and eventually owned by George Henry Macy, president of Union Pacific Tea (A&P stores later).

 

Amy Vermillion Interiors-Cherokee Cottage Jekyll Island GA

This is Cherokee Cottage built in 1904 in Italian Renaissance style by the Shrady family.  The Beans and I stayed here last year when we took a girls’ getaway–just the two of us.  It is incredibly beautiful and the accommodations are lovely but when the lights dimmed several times in the bathroom, I was really wishing Mr. V had come with us–if you know what I mean.

 

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog-Sans Souci Jekyll Island GA

Sans Souci (“Without a care”) was built in 1896 and was owned in part by J.P. Morgan.  It is considered to be the first condo complex in the U.S. with six apartments.  You can stay here as well and it has a beautiful view of the river.  Legend has it that you can smell Mr. Morgan’s cigar in the top right apartment in the early morning.  He liked to get up, smoke a cigar and read the paper while watching the ships bring his friends in from Brunswick.

That is Mr. V riding the Beans around the driveway.  One of my favorite things to do on Jekyll is ride through the maritime forests, down the long path to the beach and around the historic district.  They rent bicycles (or you can bring your own) and I lose myself for hours while tooling around.

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog

I actually took this picture mid ride!  I cannot express to you how much I love this place.  It restores my soul and makes me happy right down to my toes.  Sometimes we go in the summer but it was absolutely heavenly riding through during spring.  The jasmine and honeysuckle mixed with the pluff mud of the marshes transported me to a different planet.  You can hear little creatures scuttling through the forest bottom and many times you can see brilliant birds perched in the mossy limbs of the giant oaks.

Amy Vermillion Interiors -Jekyll Island

Amy Vermillion Interiors -Jekyll Island

Lookee here!  Gator Boy has been swimming in this remote pond for decades.  I turned the corner and came upon the rangers putting away their equipment in trucks.  They had just tagged him and he was meandering back to his lady love on the other side of the pond.  Gator boy is about 35-40 years old and 10-1/2 feet long.  I have seen him once or twice in the past but it was nice to find out his history.

Amy Vermillion Interiors -Jekyll Island

Mr. V and the Beans checking out the egrets taking flight above the pine canopy.

Amy Vermillion Interiors -Jekyll Island

This is the home to Jekyll Books which is one of my hang outs.  I adore this place.  It’s filled with several floors of wonderfully diverse books, gifts and Southern must haves like Sweet Fire pickles.  You can perch on the porch and have some ice cream or spend hours cruising the stacks.  I have never not found an entirely interesting tome.  This time I picked up Erskine Caldwell’s, “God’s Acre” which was banned in the 1920′s for its scandalous political and sexual content.  Which, trust me, is tame compared to the stuff today.

It was built by Joseph Pulitzer for his guests and servants in 1903.  He had a separate 26 room residence that didn’t survive.  Rumor has it that Pulitzer was invited to join the club so he wouldn’t trash it in one of his many papers.  Rumor also has it that a little girl named Phoebe haunts the book store by mischievously moving things around.  One of the ladies who works there told me that she is happier now that they moved the toys upstairs.  Yikes!

Back to the architecture…

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog- Crane Cottage Jekyll Island

The most lavish of all…Crane Cottage was built in 1917 for Richard Teller Crane Jr. (plumbing magnate from Chicago) in Italian Renaissance style.  It has sunken gardens, fountains and courtyards.  You can not only stay here but many couples marry on the lawn or the sweet church behind the cottage.  Pictures don’t do this justice.  It is without a doubt one of the most magnificent homes I have ever seen.

The gardens…

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog- Crane Cottage Jekyll Island

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog- Crane Cottage Jekyll Island

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog- Crane Cottage Jekyll Island

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog- Crane Cottage Jekyll Island

Mr. V doesn’t know it yet but we will be renewing our vows here…just saying.

The Goodyears built this one in 1906:

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog-  Jekyll Island

How’s the view?

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog-  Jekyll Island

Here is haunted Hollybourne Cottage…the only cottage that hasn’t been renovated or restored.  ”Things” keep happening here including workmen’s tools moving about.   The Maurice Family built it out of tabby in 1906 and the sisters lived here until Georgia bought the island in 1940′s.  It did not go well and the sisters left unhappily.  Apparently the ladies still want their house.

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog-  Jekyll Island

Because I couldn’t resist we went for a walk one evening…Beans had a potty 911 so Mr. V took her back to the club.  I shot this as the sun was going down…

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog-  Jekyll Island

And those are vultures.  No photoshop.  I swear on everything dear to me.  I heard a weird noise and walked around the back and saw them inching across the ancient roof ridge.  It must have been their talons that I heard on the shingles.  I have never seen a vulture anywhere near Jekyll Island in 7 years.  And yet here they are all Scooby Doo and what not.  I laughed for a minute, snapped the picture and then made my way pronto back to the club.

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog-  Jekyll Island

I almost missed this guy.  He is one of the two lions that guarded the Gould’s former mansion.  All that is left of the house is the crumbling foundation behind him.

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog-  Jekyll Island

When we are done riding bikes or kayaking or beaching it you will find us here….the pool bar staff brings your drinks and your lunch right to your pool chair.  That’s EXACTLY what I am talking about.

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog-  Jekyll Island

Or you can find me here on the porch with a treasure from Jekyll Books…

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog-  Jekyll Island

Or having tea with the Beans…

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog-  Jekyll Island

Or napping in a chair…

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog-  Jekyll Island

Your accomodations are waiting for you…

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog-  Jekyll Island

You can get a room with an attached sunroom if you like…

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog-  Jekyll Island

Or a room with a balcony overlooking the river and pool.  We were in a suite in the turret (on the right) this time–it was great.  And Beans thought the best thing that ever happened was when she got to sleep on the pull out sofa in the living area!  I have learned it’s all in how you “sell” something to a five year old.

And did I mention that some of the staff know us by name and actually remember us when we pull up to the club?  Yeah.  It’s that kind of place.

Just get down here…you won’t regret it!  So much to do…or not to do…

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog-  Jekyll Island

I am off to Florida this week to install a client’s project.  Thank goodness for memories made at Jekyll with the two people who mean the most to me…

I am grateful for the soul restoring times when the busy takes over.

Thanks for reading…I know it was a long one but there is so much to say about one of my favorite places…I hope you find a place like this too.

@

APR 23rd

Goofing With Alexa Hampton, Chatting With Suzanne Kasler & A Dazzling Hickory Chair Showroom

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog-HIckory ChairNo sleep till Brooklyn.  Or till Charlotte.  My travel schedule is kinda crazy in the next month but I managed to fit in 12 hours at High Point Furniture Market–squeezed in between a short getaway to Jekyll Island (pictures in an upcoming blog) and next week working in Florida.  Then it’s off to Atlanta for a couple of days and then Charleston the following week.  Hey, I’m not complaining!  I love what I do and am very grateful for the upcoming projects.

The very beautiful setting above is one of Suzanne Kasler’s vignettes at Hickory Chair.  Long time readers know how much I love Hickory Chair (and Suzanne) and my clients love it too.  Suzanne made her existing pieces fresh with new tweaks including delicious cream lacquer.  She also changed up her night tables (which could easily be used as side tables) by eliminating the mirror which gave them a whole new life!  Of course you can still order them with mirror and that’s what’s so great about Hickory Chair. The possibilities for customization are endless and I can make each piece my client’s very own by adding a stripe, changing a detail or modifying the dimensions.

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog- Hickory Chair/High Point Market

Suzanne has a new book, “Timeless Style,” coming out in October and I cannot wait!  It will be published by Rizzoli and includes 8 residences that she designed from a Tennessee farmhouse to her own luxurious home in Atlanta.  Her first book, “Inspired Interiors” is one of my go- tos for inspiration and has a well worn spine on my shelf.

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog-

The cadet blue mixed with the cream is divine and I never tire of a soft palette.  And of course, you can never go wrong with velvet.  Ever.  She has a wonderful aesthetic of clean elegance!  She infuses her interiors with timeless elements, mixed finishes and the occasional nod to Paris.

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog-

 

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog-Hickory Chair Suzanne Kasler

 

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog-Hickory Chair Suzanne Kasler

Known for her attention to details, Suzanne made me giddy with delight over her Amsterdam Chair with its sweet tape and nails.

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog-Hickory Chair Suzanne Kasler P1030522 2

Let’s face it.  There is no segue into this.

Call us tired.  Call us weird.  Call us…”Amy & Alexa–just go with it.”

Daughter of legend Mark Hampton, Alexa has made her own way in the design world with her classic details and sophisticated glamour–this photo pretty much sums up what designers do when we get punchy.

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog- Alexa Hampton

Look, Einstein once said “Creativity is intelligence having fun.”  So there you have it.  Alexa Hampton is hands down one of the funniest and most talented designers I know.  And I guess she can put her foot on the table if she wants since it’s her table from her awesome collection for Hickory Chair. By the way, those pants of hers are vegan leather.  So there’s that.  My shoes.are.not.

Last Market was sexy red.  This Market is juicy orange! There is no mistaking Alexa’s space for anyone else’s.  Her look is sophisticated, traveled, collected and architectural.  I adore it.

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog- Alexa Hampton

Raisin and Tangerine…GREAT color combo. Kapow!

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog- Alexa Hampton

The Susannah side table gets a funky twist of orange with cream detail.  Look at how different it looks in stain as the older conservative sister.  Pretty amazing how finish choice can change the entire feeling of a piece!

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog

 

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog

And the Breck Chair–graphic and hot in dreamsicle suede and cream lacquer –gets laid back and simply sophisticated below in linen and stain.Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog- Alexa Hampton Warning:  The picture below is totally random, not part of Hickory Chair or High Point Market.  It is however one of my all time favorite spaces.Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog- Alexa Hampton

Because I am still obsessed with Alexa’s bedroom from the 2012 Kips Bay Decorator Show House…I had to throw in the picture above.  The bed, the lacquer walls…entirely fantastic.

And get this…her sweet daughter is going to have that bed.  Maybe Alexa will adopt me.  Don’t we look alike?

Amy Vermillion Interiors Blog- Alexa Hampton

Since the rest of the Hickory Chair showroom was pretty wonderful I had to post some of those pictures too.  Pictures are great (or not depending on my karma) but they don’t do the showroom justice.

Amy Vermillion Interiors- Hickory Chair

 

Amy Vermillion Interiors- Hickory Chair

 

Amy Vermillion Interiors- Hickory Chair

 

Amy Vermillion Interiors- Hickory Chair

 

Amy Vermillion Interiors- Hickory Chair

 

Amy Vermillion Interiors- Hickory Chair

 

Amy Vermillion Interiors- Hickory Chair

 

And it wouldn’t be a Market post without FLOWERS:

Amy Vermillion Interiors- Hickory Chair

 

Amy Vermillion Interiors- Hickory Chair

 

Amy Vermillion Interiors- Hickory Chair

 

Amy Vermillion Interiors- Hickory Chair

And speaking of flowers…the winner of the Nest White Narcisse candle is:  Lucy Grasty.  Please contact me so I can get your information as to where to send your candle.  I so appreciate all of you!!!  Thank you to the new subscribers, commenters, readers, twitter followers, facebook likers and everyone in between.  It means the world to me that you read and comment and send such nice emails!

I will feature another “Ask Amy-she’s a designer” question coming up soon and Katie–please send me your dresser pictures so we can see that new hardware!

Stay tuned for more Market delights and a peek into the Vermillion Family Jekyll Island Getaway coming soon.

Thank you for reading,

@

APR 17th

Photo Shoot Sneaky Peeks

Amy Vermillion Interiors-Sweet Peas, Dianthus, Hydrangea

Here’s a glimpse into my recent photo shoot!  It was a long 12 hour day but I think we ended up with some great shots.

I took all of these with my iPhone so pardon the non professional quality.  I generally snap them as test shots for my photographer.  It is really helpful to show him the composition I want before he starts.  Not everything ends up being in the photo–some things are simply “space place holders,” but it gives us a good idea how it’s going to look and can make a really long shoot run more efficiently.

Thank you for the nice emails/comments about the flowers– a lot of you asked if I would show some close ups of the finished arrangements-and while I don’t have all of the them I’m happy to share what I have and what’s in each one.

The large vase above:  Sweet peas, hydrangea and green dianthus.

 

Amy Vermillion Interiors-Parrot Tulips, Paperwhites

The greatest part of photo shoots (besides the photographs!) are the florals that come home with me and get distributed to my family and friends.

This one is living on my bedside table at the moment.  I love simple arrangements and this one has parrot tulips and paper whites.   The fragrance in my bedroom is heavenly!

 

Amy Vermillion Interiors

A peek into a vignette of one of my favorite rooms.  It is an upstairs ladies’ sitting room for a client who wanted a place to read and enjoy a quiet moment.  She is an incredibly successful businesswoman and it was a pleasure to create a spot for her to unwind.   The purple shagreen tray is pretty wonderful.

 

Amy Vermillion Interiors- Ranunculus, Hygrangea, Hyacinth, Green Dianthus

I love, love, LOVE the colors in this arrangement and I had fun putting it together.  It is wonderfully springy and bright and I adore the contrast of the unwieldy and rowdy ranunculus and the well behaved hydrangea.

The arrangement also includes fuchsia hyacinth (which I hadn’t seen before) and green dianthus (which by now you can tell is one of my favorites).

 

Amy Vermillion Interiors

Lemons in a really interesting piece that my client brought home from Morocco.  These are sitting on the shelf of a limited edition Baker bar cart with antique mirror and bamboo details.  It’s a great cart!

The one thing I learned from a photo stylist was to never put things in weird places.  Huh?  In other words if you are styling a closet, don’t put a bowl of lemons on the island next to a handbag.  You are telling a story of what’s happening in the photo and no one I know eats lemons while deciding what to wear.

 

Amy Vermillion Interiors-Bar

Lemons and limes on a bar DO make sense.  The wooden and silver bowl (limes) makes me crazy, in a good way.  I like the rough texture mixed in with all of the antique mirror and shine.

 

Amy Vermillion Interiors

Hello Darling Dahlias!  I used the bowl again since I was obsessed with it.  This time the bowl was dressed with miniature pears.  That I wanted to eat on site but I restrained myself.  I ate them later.

 

Amy Vermillion Interiors

Pincushion Protea…simple, exotic and slightly alien.  You know why test shots are important?  Because you can see when the hinges are showing on your backwards boxes!  Ha!

 

Amy Vermillion Interiors

The greatest thing about a client with an elevator in her home?  Lazy me can load up everything and cruise to another floor!

Thanks for reading…

In the next couple of days I will be off to High Point Furniture Market. The long daily drives to and from Charlotte are always worth it and I hope to give you some design scoop soon.

Hope your week is fantastic.

@

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