Reviewer Conny Withay:Operating her own business in office management since 1991, Conny is an avid reader and volunteers with the elderly playing her designed The Write Word Game. A cum laude graduate with a degree in art living in the Pacific Northwest, she is married with two sons, two daughters-in-law, and three grandchildren.
Author: Valorie Hart
Photographer: Sara Essex Bradley
Publisher: Glitterati Incorporated
“The people of Louisiana make their homes welcoming, whether it’s at a humble farm table or at a fancy Chippendale dining table under a glittering chandelier. Decorating is a way of life, part of home keeping and it’s actually done in an everyday humble spirit,” Valorie Hart writes in her lovely table book, House Proud: Unique Home Design / Louisiana.
This one hundred and ninety-two page hardbound book is nine by eleven inches and devoted to interior designs of Louisiana homes. Beginning with a foreword by Debra Shriver and introduction by the author, there are eleven chapters dedicated to different styles of interior decorating. With one hundred and fifty color photographs from a quarter of the page to the full page, actual homes and owners are shown and named, sometimes including their pets. The end of the book includes a poem by Paul Ott, list of sources, a topical index, and acknowledgements.
Design styles by chapter are separated into venues of compact, unusual, first-timer, collections, art or music, professional, do-it-yourself, minimalistic, country, grand, and traditional. Each chapter has one to three residential owners’ stories, house history, and tastes along with a short five-point “Takeaway” that offers reader tips, suggestions, and ideas.
Jill and Peter’s “out of the box” unique home is located in Old Gretna where they call their style, “Early Attic,” as nothing is too serious. With inspiration from HGTV, their favorite showcase item is an antique Mora clock situated in the pale blue living room. Knowing the house’s history dating back to the late eighteen hundreds, form is the focal point, not function. “Takeaways” include joining two houses, repurposing ordinary objects, and using white abundantly with vintage mirrors and old architectural elements.
On the opposite side of the design coin, the Valzanias are total traditionalists in their French Quarter home in New Orleans. With an 1830’s gutted Creole cottage complete with courtyard and a guesthouse, furnishings are sparse but well-chosen with a French feeling. Suggestions at the end of the chapter include white-over painting furniture, using metallic blue for ceilings, painting the inside of a china cabinet black, arranging by color and trying a demi-lune bench for spacing issues.
With the full color, glossy upgraded paper and beautiful photographic detail, any designer or house lover notices the charm of these exquisite homes that are loved and cherished by their owners. The helpful tips give the reader a wonderful avenue to discover new-found decorating ideas or solve spacing problems.
This book was furnished by Glitterati Incorporated in lieu of an unbiased review.