The family room off the kitchen is the crown jewel of “The Gingerbread House”.

Sep 23, 2018 | PLACE

The family room off the kitchen is the crown jewel of “The Gingerbread House”. If you look at the before picture with puzzlement it is because there is no longer a window where there once was. There are pitfalls to a house that was built before any other on the block which includes vistas out to garages and walls of homes that were not there in 1870. So out came two such small windows and in came a double patio door to the garden. The rare faience mantlepiece was a total find in Atlanta. It pays to know your history of crafts, textures and mediums employed. Having grown up in Europe, with a mother deeply immersed in the arts, this is a gift that I was slow to be grateful for. This lonely little mantle was in a corner gathering dust. It is a very special type of fireclay, or faience, that the Dutch and then the Venetians used. There are three heads on the mantlepiece, and if you knew the hats worn in the 17thc, those alone were a tell. Crating and shipping are an art best left to professionals, but to trust in them is awarding as you will then be in possession of pieces that are truly unique. The rug belongs to a group of Khal Mohammadis that were found in London by The Canadian Rug Traders. The deep carmine and lapis find a jewel tone mirrror match in the emerald green ceiling barn board. The lacquered blue of the millwork was taken from the 15thc Romanian “Scene” art piece over the mantle. My signature is laying paper on the backs of bookcases. Here it is a marbelized silver and chalk Cole and Son. When my father passed, he gave me the furniture of his study where he and I sat many a morning after breakfast reading newspapers and many a night reading the very books pictured here, now and then comforting each other for the loss of our spouses to cancer and divorce. He had asked me to reupholster these chairs but he never got to see them. I think he would have loved the crushed deep blush. He was a man who wore pink well. Explaining to a multitude of teenaged lugs, clumsy from limbs growing beyond their pace and ability to control them, that the coffee table was made of paper…was the only drawback to this room I could think of.