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Paying Home-age

Paying Home-age

“You have to focus on your dreams even if they go beyond common sense” Anna Sui

I have always been a HUGE fan of Anna Sui. Of course with her perfection of Boho Glam it was heavenly love for this rock and roll girl. Back in the day I cloaked myself in her velvets and brocades finished off with biker boots and a great floppy or top hat. I found her clothes far more attainable in the (what I felt) elitist fashion world. When her store opened up in Soho it was like coming home and I loved how lusciously comfortable it felt. To this day if I see purple and black together (as in the store’s design or Anna Sui packing) I immediately think of Anna Sui. I feel flooded with sensual fantasy and scents of an earthy English garden. Now that is some great branding juju!

Her new line inspired by the History Channel’s show Vikings is rich and inspired. I recently started watching Vikings after my friend John recommended it to me numerous times and he was right (per usual) I LOVE it! Highly recommend!!! So this marriage of Anna Sui and Vikings makes beautiful sense to me. The Scandi patterns mixed with furs, the layers, the colors topped off with sexy tousled hair (thanks to my uber talented friend and hairstylist Louis Angelo) and the Inuit face tattoos! It’s a whole new refreshing love affair!!!

 Here are photos of my favorite looks from the show. 

More info on Louis Angelo below. 


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Paying Home-age

Interview with Brad McCall.

Anyone who has worked or talked with Brad McCall knows that he TRULY is a renaissance man. He can paint, sculpt, sew, build, do ceramics & hair and even make custom shoes and jewelry. I’ve had the pleasure and life changing exposure to work closely with Brad. The knowledge, skills and laughter I experienced are absolutely priceless! It makes complete sense that for the last eight years Brad has been a successful and favorite Visual Instructor at FIDM in Los Angeles. Brad cares. He has high visual and project integrity. He is one of kind just like his designs, I lOVE him!

In his lengthy career in Visual, Window and Retail Design and as a Creative Director his clients have been Neiman Marcus, Harry Winston, Hermes, Wynn Resort Las Vegas, and Martin Katz. He produced the five million Black Diamond Victoria Secrets Martin Katz 2008 Fantasy Bra with over 3900 jewels. He worked with Bob Mackey and Cher designing and producing Cher’s custom tour shoes.

TSF – How would you describe your style?

Brad – I like to think eclectic. I love things in my home that are from my travels. Love goods with an ethic origin and casual sophistication. I like color a lot but mostly like the home environment to be a more subdue color and let the furnishings add that element to the mix. Big fan of WHITE and greys. I vacillate from eclectic to stark and sparse Definitely in Summer I like it white and sparse.  Very cooling effect I feel with a touch of color for pop.

 TSF – What inspires you?

Brad – The sun coming up in the morning, love seeing the break of day. My spiritualism. Art, music, movies, reading, good food and hole in the wall bars – I have a real passion for them. Good friends, cooking meals for them, gardens and traveling.

TSF- How do you come up with a display concept? 

 Brad – I like windows with strong composition and order. To the point. I want the attention to be on the item of importance. I like the same in my lifestyle environment but softer and more comfortable. Most of all I like detail. Attention to details and finishes are very important.

TSF – What’s your dream job?

 Brad – One where I get to travel and live in different places around the world, write about my experiences and get paid! As for my current jobs, I love what I do. I have always loved my visual design consulting jobs. They are always a challenge and never boring. I can’t stand to be bored!


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Master Brad McCall  

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Paying Home-age

Interview with Tracey Belfatto

Tracey is a dear friend and fellow stylist/creator. When I see Tracey I automatically imagine that we’re in a pre-Raphaelite painting and I’m instantly home. Colors are richer, gardens greener, flowers more fragrant, naughtiness is always a possibility and beauty is painfully endless…I paid a visit and homage to Tracey and Rik’s (Tracey’s partner) Upstate NY house, studio, greenhouse and 61 acres. These two have always been a huge inspiration and partners in crime. I am forever grateful for their knowledge, talent and contributions.

TSF: How would you describe your style?
Tracey:  Well traveled, textured, natural, eclectic, modern, warm, earthy , rusty. Everything  has a story, and a long life. Sentimental essence, timeless .

TSF: What are your favorite styles or designs?
Tracey:  Simplicity, elegance, natural or unique proportion,comfort, craftsmanship, a melding of the modern and arcane.

TSF: I see you have little collections throughout your house, how do you decide what becomes a collection for you?
Tracey:  I love well worn things and  the feel and warmth of old wooden spoons, bowls, the history of cutting boards and old mortars and pestles. It’s a connection one might feel for an old cashmere sweater, a possession that’s existed forever.

TSF: What inspires you? Motivates you in design.
Tracey: History ,nature, light, giving new meaning to discarded or saved objects. I hate when things break. I create daily arrangements with things I find on my long walks . I blend, build and shuffle them so they keep going and changing flavor, like a soup one keeps on the stove and adds to making it richer.

TSF: You and Rik have done a lot work to your upstate house, what were your visions when you bought this place?
Tracey:  The place was so tiny and cozy, it was all about the outdoor space. We wanted to add a bright, glass room, where we would could cook and entertain more expansively.  We proceeded to build two-thirds more house onto the cabin, pretty much cache as cache can. We bought things, found most and revamped quite a bit of materials so progress was slow.  It was truly a hand-built process. We had the sliding glass doors before the room and designed around them. We are still searching for handles to fit them. We found thermal windows on the street in Harlem. Friends would spot things, mention it and we’d pick them up. All the butcher block was found on NYC streets. They were used in our NYC loft and reused again up here. Rik’s work studio and mine are both built with old sets and materials from our design business.  We  made a teepee in the woods, our old backdrops sewn together as its cover. When constructing the new room, we moved the back deck around to the guest bedroom side for a lovely private porch. Sounds easy but it took all summer. Renting the place for a few days here and there provided a bit of cash to continue.

TSF: You’re not afraid of color how do you decide what colors to use in your rooms?
Tracey:  I love to feel the sun in every room, seems all my NYC apts. were dark, so I always compensated with color and warmth. Being a painter and designer, it is constantly changing.

TSF: I love the DIY fireplace mantel headboard, how did that come about?
Tracey:  I have been dragging that mantle around forever. It came from an old brownstone in Murray hill. They knocked down the building and I salvaged  it. It has had many incarnations, and  will have many more. Almost any object d’ art is capable of infinite placements . Loss of possibility is a bit sad when things are set in stone, cemented.



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