At J. Roaman—a home furnishings store in East Hampton, New York—a painted white iron bed wears a giant charm bracelet over its left head post. The bracelet isn’t there because the bed wants for visual interest; it’s already enveloped in a brightly coloured quilt by Lisa Corti, a Milanese designer, and topped with four pillows, five throw pillows and a bolster. The reason for the jewellery, according to Judi Roaman—a former fashion retailer who opened the store in May—is that furniture, like any carefully curated outfit, should express its owner’s personality. “Accessories make the bed into who you want her to be,” she explained.
A chair bracelet by J Roaman Furnishings
The idea that furniture should wear jewellery may strike some people as, well, nuts. But the notion behind it—that the kind of personal style associated with fashion can, and should, be expressed through home accessorizing, in ways that go far beyond throw pillows—has become a guiding principle of the furnishings industry.
Decades after industry began routinely drawing inspiration from fashion, the boundaries between the two worlds are starting to erode, as their philosophies, vocabularies and materials become increasingly hard to tell apart. Fashion and home design are “collapsing into each other”, said the New York furniture and interior designer Celerie Kemble, who has described her curvy new sidetables as having “the insouciant kick of a flared hemline”.
©2007/The New York Times