“Nature’s quintessential color combination of blue and white never ceases to amaze me. The look of pristine snow against deep blue Aspen skies; spires of blue and white delphinium in a garden; Connecticut’s spring mornings where the apple blossoms and nodding heads of white narcissus are in contrast to soft blue skies and vibrant green grass—these and many more images found in nature have informed my work for the last thirty-five years. From fashion to interiors, and tabletop to gardens, the presence of blue and white is a constant in my past collections as well as throughout my previous eight books. It seems natural that I would eventually do a book on living and designing with this seminal color combination.”
—from the Introduction
This private tour of the dazzling homes of legendary style-setter Carolyne Roehm showcases her favorite color combination in more than three hundred glorious photographs.
From the time designer Carolyne Roehm rented her first small apartment in New York in her twenties, she has loved blue and white. In that one-bedroom flat, she draped the walls, chairs, sofa, and a canopy bed in an inexpensive blue and white sheeting fabric designed by her boss, Oscar de la Renta, and began collecting blue-and-white porcelain from around the world—initially bargain reproductions and eventually museum-quality pieces—from China, Japan, Portugal, the Netherlands, and elsewhere.
Today, Carolyne Roehm presides over a magnificent duplex in Manhattan, an antique-filled stone house in Connecticut, and a chic yet rustic home in Aspen, all of which contain rooms decorated in blue and white, featuring accents from her collections of china, ceramics, glassware, linens, furniture, and decorative pieces. These rooms employ the whole spectrum of blues, from delicate sky to the deepest, boldest navy, evoking moods ranging from tranquil to vibrant.
In A Passion for Blue and White, Carolyne Roehm takes us inside her homes (including her former pied-à-terre in Paris) in never-before-seen photographs of these stunning rooms. She also reveals how she has used blue and white to magnificent effect outdoors in Connecticut around her pool and in her gardens—and even how she used the combination in designing a wedding for a friend.
She provides inspiration for tabletop design, flower arranging, and gift-wrapping, suitable for all budgets. Her ceramic, textile, and glass collections (endless sources of her creativity) can be emulated by anyone with trips to flea markets, thrift shops, and inexpensive import stores as well as antique stores and galleries.
A swatch of French fabric began Carolyne Roehm’s lifetime love affair with blue and white. In this book, she demonstrates through her own decorating and designs, how this combination works its magic on everything from upholstery and drapes to napkins and tablecloths, wrapping paper and ribbons. For anyone with a passion for blue and white, here is the ultimate style guide and Carolyne Roehm’s most gorgeous book yet.
About the Author
Carolyne Roehm, noted author and lifestyle contributor to Good Morning America, brings her gardening expertise to viewers weekly as the host of Country Homes, Country Gardens.
In 1991, Roehm, who had always taken great pleasure in indulging and surrounding herself with things she loved, decided to turn her personal passion for beauty and comfort into a fulfilling career. A longtime associate (and neighbor) of famed couturier, Oscar de la Renta, Roehm began her own fashion business, setting her designs apart from many others in the industry with her unflagging insistence on only the finest quality materials. Her designs quickly found a home with discriminating consumers, as her first year alone saw revenues exceeding $3 million. But Roehm's passion for beauty extended beyond the world of fashion, and she became determined to broaden her horizons accordingly.
Following a stint at the famed Paris flower shop, Moulie Savart, Roehm took the knowledge she gained there and put it into practical use for the everyday gardener. Resulting from her considerable experience, she takes great joy in revealing the many secrets she learned to help everyone achieve a bountiful and beautiful garden.
In 1997, Roehm published her first book, A Passion for Flowers (September 1997, HarperCollins Publishers) in which she detailed the experts' tricks to perfect gardening. A firm believer in luxury for everyone, Roehm feels that luxury doesn't necessarily mean expensive. Her breathtaking floral arrangements, for example, traditionally contain many common flowers such as carnations, marigolds, bleeding hearts, and Queen Anne's lace, which she collects from her own garden at her Connecticut home.
Roehm applies the fashion lessons she learned to her flowers. The familiar cry of "accessorize" is as important to arranging blooms as it is to one's own appearance. "I can't tell you how often I've seen a dress ruined with the wrong accessories," Roehm explains. "It's the same with flowers. Even the most beautiful flowers don't work if they're in the wrong vase or placed against the wrong background."