Golden Inspirations

By Julie Browning Bova

When asked about how gold inspires me and how it plays a role in our interiors it is the one element that makes me always smile.

I happen to love adding a decorative gold element, be it a mirror, a chandelier, a chest or an artifact. For example, a unique chest added to a mud room can add an element of surprise, refined sparkle or act as the perfect place for your candy dish or seasonal floral arrangement.

Looking back to the first moment I stood in the Hall of Mirrors at Versailles I remember that it was a breathtaking sight. Every gilded candelabra, every crystal chandelier sparkled. The mirrors played with light and reflected the room far unto imaginary distances. A sense of awe at the craftsmanship is forever embedded in my memory.

The Hall of Mirrors at the Palace of Versailles

For contemporary living a mirror’s reflection, crystal, a touch of gold and a wood floor make a glorious combination of materials.

The layering of materials is what makes the use of gold so enticing. Light fixtures with gold accents, sideboards with inlaid details, chair frames gilt in gold leaf. Aged or patinated, the reflection of a gold timeless finish softens the lines of any piece of furniture.

An eighteenth century English gilt-wood dolphin console in the entrance hall supports a lavish display of orchids under Giambattista Piranesi engravings of ancient Roman ruins. Tiffany's Palm Beach by John Loring.

"I love gold on virtually any piece of furniture or accessory. Just a touch of gold adds warmth to any room, instant elegance. It is what makes a room sparkle and feel special. Gold is classic and adds energy to the most informal of settings. This bright yet subtle finish blends with any color scheme in your interior space." Julie Browning Bova

Gold adds glamour, luxury and a special lightness to every room. This beautiful desk from Theodore Alexander combines both gold and silver in an elegant hand crafted finish. Eglomise brings the subtle reflections of a mirrored surface with the softness of gold.

"Notes to an Italian Lover"

From Egyptian pharaohs from the 18th dynasty to the ancient cultures throughout civilization gold has been the symbol of wealth, power and treasure. Hollywood looks to gold to add a special flair.

"When it comes to furniture, Chippendale a work like no other. Basking in the spotlight under the glorious scones on this mirrored landing in an extraordinary ten-foot George III sofa, made about 1760 in the Chippendale workshop"

Entertaining with a lovely gold tea tray with champagne flutes filled with our favourite bubbly, a Tiffany tea set, porcelain with gold accents can make the most casual gathering seem like a royal affair.

Georgian Revival eighteen-karat gold tea and coffee service from Tiffany & Co from Tiffany's Palm Beach by John Loring

A Collection of champagne flutes, from The Epicurean Collector by Patrick Dune

"The lush tabletop close-up exemplifies my love of the Midas touch. the French gold porcelain has wide gold borders, as does the cut crystal stemware." Jamie Drake's New American Glamour.

The 110-by-40 foot entrance hall of Whitehall. Tiffany's Palm Beach by John Loring

February marks the month of Love, Fashion, Hollywood Glamor and Oscar gold, with the emphasis on luxe and elegance. The return of gold on the fashion runway and red carpet is exciting! Gilded sequins, lame, mesh, brocade and layers of luxurious fabrics will grace this season’s prestigious awards ceremonies.

One past film that comes to mind is the unforgettable James Bond’s Goldfinger and the image of Jill Masterson’s painted body. It was once stated that the five minute golden scene “defined the start of the Bond saga rise to world acclaim”. What a strong example of how a film’s visual images can influence culture.

Strapless gown of gold coupe de velour on silk chiffon with sarong draped back, by Bill Blass, Fall 1986. Bill Blass, An American Designer.

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