The June 2015 Architectural Digest’s 8 best interiors with decorative rugs provide insights into how Giorgio Armani decorated with colorful flat-weave oriental rugs to promote relaxation in his recently updated Saint-Tropez country house and how AD100 Designer Douglas Durkin brought a refreshing elegance to a famous 1920’s Beaux-Arts style house with custom decorative rugs.
Giorgio Armani relaxes barefoot in a navy-blue long sleeve T-shirt and matching trousers in the entrance hall of his updated 19-th century Saint-Tropez house which he recently decorated himself.
Armani’s stucco house has green shutters and a Portuguese tile roof. The garden are sheltered by tall palms and fragrant eucalyptus and cypress trees. “It isn’t a house to show off in—it’s to live in,” Armani told AD….”I was also shown a very big American-style house with great views of the Mediterranean, but I wanted something cozier, something that felt like a country house by the sea.”
Giorgio Armani oversaw the decoration of the house himself. “I like to do my own things,” he told AD, “I don’t have anything against architects, but if you can design yourself, it’s better.” To create a cozy seaside feeling, Armani chose vibrantly colored oriental flat-weave rugs throughout. A blue oriental flat-weave rug brings a calm feeling to the entrance hall and delights the visitor with its unexpected juxtaposition with vintage armchairs upholstered in tiger-print velvet and an Armani/Casa coffee table.
A blue flat-weave oriental rug with a large center medallion introduces bold pattern and soothing color to the home office and creates an unexpected contrast with an Armani/Casa desk and red Campaign chair.
In the dining room a red and blue oriental flat-weave rug anchors a vintage dining table from Milan and Armani/Casa chairs. The walls are of Saint-Maximin limestone.
Colorful rugs and cushions and Armani/Casa furnishings create a calm and relaxing atmosphere in the loggia.
Designer Douglas Durkin freshened a 1920s Beaux-Arts style San Francisco house by the celebrated architect Arthur Brown Jr. Durkin created a relaxed and elegant atmosphere in the living room with a custom Polonaise rug in soft grays, silver and blue and complimented it with a Louis XVI chandelier and English and French furnishings.
Since fine 17th century Polonaise rugs are very valuable, the real rugs are rarely used in interior decoration. Instead their elegant patterns and colors are adapted for custom made rugs. The fascinating history of Polonaise rugs is worth recounting.
This fine 17th century Polonaise rug in The Metropolitan Museum, New York has a silk pile with highlights of silver and gold brocading. The best Polonaise rugs are now thought to have been made in the 1600s in Isfahan on order for the Persian monarch Shah Abbas I who liked to give them as special gifts.
When a similar carpet was exhibited in Paris in 1878, it had a coat of arms that was assumed to be Polish. From this it was inferred that the rug was made in Poland. Later it was realized that the carpet was made in Persia, but the name Polonaise has persisted. The muted colors, ornate patterns and rich materials of Polonaise rugs appealed to the Baroque tastes of 17th century Europe where Polonaise rugs were highly prized.
For the guest room of the San Francisco house, Douglas Durkin chose a pale gray Oushak rug to compliment a stately canopy bed and a sleigh bench upholstered in blue velvet.
In the Durkin designed master bedroom a beige geometric rug compliments a neoclassical bench, a red velvet upholstered ottoman, floral print curtains and 19th-century chandelier.
In the Durkin designed breakfast room a beige and gold geometric rug compliments a round pedestal table and red cushion and drapery fabrics.