Chaos And Dinner | Valentina Cirasola | Interior Designer

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What a way to celebrate Halloween! Last night and for the second time, I went to a cabaret show at Teatro Zinzanni in San Francisco, the ultimate crazy amusement. Teatro Zinzanni is one in a long line of high-spirited San Francisco theatrical experience.

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The high pace, high energy program evolves in a combination of cabaret, cirque, opera, vaudeville arts, games and dances. There is no real stage, actors, singers and acrobats perform in the middle of the circular room and between tables where diners are sitting.
Guests are greeted at the door by young and beautiful women in fish nets stockings, garter, feathers and corsets. It is a step back in time, a prelude of an exceptionally fun evening.
“The Belle Époque” era, late 1800, is the style of dresses all the staff wears and the high performers are in their stage costumes or the character they impersonate.

Inside Zinzanni ©Valentina Cirasola

 

The interior of the Theatre reflects the same era, with a lot of red velvet upholstery and gold trims, very frivolous, but very stylish and very Moulin Rouge.
Waiters and waitresses, bus boys and girls all serve in costume, dance and sing while they are holding in their hands the dishes full of food to be served at each table. This is fine dining at its best. I especially appreciated the squash velute’ soup with roasted apple slices, dill and a few lemon juice drops. Photographing during the performance is not allowed.
The scenario is happy, up beat and frivolous and the performances take place during the development of a 5-course dinner.

Inside Zinzanni ©Valentina Cirasola

 

The only drawback is that unless you buy the table for yourself and the company you bring along, you will end up being seated with many other people who might not be interested in socializing for the time you must spend together at the dinner table.

 

On my left I had a couple in their early ’50 and a couple in their early ’70 on my right. We made our acquaintances at the table.
The people on my right clearly don’t find life very amusing, because they did not even laugh one time during the show. The show was so funny, how could they not laugh? The people on my right were checking their watch every 15 minutes, counting the time aloud: it’s seven o’ clock, it’s 7:15, it’s 7:30, perhaps the show started past their bedtime and couldn’t wait to go home and get in the sack.

Inside Zinzanni ©Valentina Cirasola

 

My evening was fun no matter what and I really enjoyed myself, but if I had been seated with a crowd more alive, the evening would have been an incredible one.
Perhaps those people sitting at each of my side, deep down inside, wished they could have been as a free spirit as I am.

Inside Zinzanni ©Valentina Cirasola

 

The show at the Zinzanni mirrors the spirit of the city, a magical place that embraces frivolity, fun, intimacy and self-expression.
Enjoy life when opportunity comes, enjoy every moment and don’t worry about people who want to put a break on your frivolity or happiness.

If you have a desire to decorate a home theatre in La Belle Époque style, or only one room, I am here to help you, just leave your name in the box below. I would be thrilled to decorate in such exciting Parisian style. Ciao,
Valentina
www.Valentinadesigns.com

 

Copyright © 2011 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved

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Valentina Cirasola is an Italian Interior Designer and former Fashion Designer, working in the USA and Europe since 1990. She blends well fashion with interior and colors the world of her clients. She has been described as “the colorist” and loves to create the unusual. She is the author of three books available on

Amazon: http://goo.gl/xUZfk0
Barnes&Nobles: http://goo.gl/q7dQ3w

 

 

Cafe’ Life | Valentina Cirasola | Interior Designer

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How many times have you sat at a café in Italy enjoying the restful moment that a cup of coffee can give you? You were observing people around you, occasionally and without being invited into the conversation you heard all that people were saying at the next tables. The colorful street life took all your attention and you wondered if people sitting at the café ever worry about anything. The atmosphere does feel as an outdoor living room, conducive to relaxation. But this is what café life is all about, leaving the worry behind to enjoy a small part of the day by ourselves and regroup, or connect with friends and cultivate relationships.

In Europe and Italy coffee shops have always been the cove to go to, often during the day, to stay, relax, meditate, discuss with friends and like-minded people and to make work deals. News and gossips came from the local cafés; often people asked what was going on in the cafés at the start of the day. One more important aspect of the café life is to find a love match. Why not? At least the catch is right there in front of your eyes, in all the details and with no surprises. In the past women were not permitted entry in the cafés, thus strolling by, was just good enough to be noticed.


(Cafe’ Florio)

Part of the Italian history was written in the cafés of Torino, the first capital of Italy, an elegant city in the Piedmont region.

Camillo Benso Count of Cavour frequented Caffè Florio where he met often with Italian officials to talk about the fate of the country. In this café we can taste the excellent pâtisserie production and appreciate the elegant atmosphere as we can in all of the city’s historic cafés. The huge and complicated coffee machines of the past make the focal point in the Italian historic cafés. Such a beauty on display!

(Cafe’ Grilli)

From Torino, going down on the Italian peninsula we can enjoy Caffe’ Gilli in Florence built in 1733 during the reign of Gian Gastone de’ Medici, decorated in the Liberty style of early 1900s. For two and half century of history the café has been the cove for artists, painters, literates and political people. Its sophisticated décor, complemented with frescoed ceilings and glass chandeliers from Murano, never allowed fistfights and flying chairs or dishes, as it happened often in other cafés, where the décor was not so sumptuous and invited boisterous behavior.


(Cafe’ Gambrinus)

At the elegant Café Gambrinus in Naples, the art of making coffee doesn’t stop at a cup of coffee. I tasted the finest baba, tiramisu’ and a lemon sorbet served in a hollowed out lemon peel that was the end of this world.

Naples is proud of the heritage left by the famous coffee shop, Caffe’ Molaro in Piazza Dante, whose origins go back to early 1800s.
The brewing of the coffee was simple family style: coffee ground was boiled in water in a clay pot and served in small clay containers. The fortune of Caffé Molaro came with other ideas that had nothing to do with coffee. The Café offered pastries, a variety of gelato flavors and a new sophisticated atmosphere with piano music. It attracted the upper classes that locked to the Café to experience the nightlife.
However, the creation of a new elixir, a digestive after dinner drink to serve with an improved coffee drink was the real novelty of Neapolitan Caffe’ Molaro and brought much success to the Café.

(Cafe’ Florian)

My favorite of all coffee houses in Italy has been forever Café Florian in Venice, in Piazza San Marco. Opened on December 29, 1720 under the name Alla Venezia Trionfante (To Triumphant Venice) was soon called Florian after its owner’s name Floriano Francesconi. This year Café Florian is celebrating its 291st birthday. What a fun place this is! I visit it every time I am in Venice, as I try to land there on purpose when I fly home to Italy to spend two-three days in the mysterious town.

Through the centuries this café too has been the hangout of artists, painters, literates, actors and actresses, political people and nobles of all casts, rich merchants and foreign visitors. Situated under the porticos of Piazza San Marco, this elegant café carries all the secrets of a rich and peaceful Venice of the past.
If walls could talk, they would tell us the stories of Goethe, Lord Byron or Casanova’s dangerous liaisons, always in search of new female lovers. Casanova, a gentle soul, really loved his women, cultivated their beauty, placed them on a pedestal and made them feel appreciated. Don Giovanni, au contraire, a young, arrogant, sexually prolific nobleman, abused and outraged all the women he had an encounter with. Casanova is my icon I had to defend him.

 

sala_uomini_illustri_caffe_florian
(Sala Uomini Illustri – Photo above – https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Sala_Uomini_Illustri_Caff%C3%A8_Florian.jpg)

The typical Venetian interior style décor of the 1700s is the reflection of a secretly permissive era, during which coquetries and affected manners were the reach of the day. 1700s décor was very ornate, as Venice was one of the five wealthy Republics in Italy, independent from the rest of the government.

Café Florian is the summary of Venice’s wealth. It shows in the intricate details of mosaic floors, coffered or faux painted ceiling, rich colors on the walls, Damask upholstery of the chairs, expensive carved wood details and large gold foil mirrors. Today we can still admire all the artistic works made by hand by the masters of that era.

Café Florian was and still is the cove of gossips, fashion talks, political discussions, but especially the center of cultural, music concerts and art events, as the famous Biennale of Venice, organized the first time in 1895 in honor of King Umberto and Queen Margherita of Italy.

Starbucks tried to recreate the same atmosphere of Italian cafés in its franchised establishments, but sorry guys, the charm, the mystery and the magic is not there! Starbucks clients are the new yuppies, or professionals with a home based businesses that want to escape the boredom and solitude of their home office and find themselves even more alone inside of Starbucks with their computers and wi-fi.
Café’ is for relaxation and free the mind for a short while, not to develop work!!!

Now going back to my interior designer profession. Often, I have recreated tasting room in kitchens and wine cellars for homes, why not design a café corner in any part of a home, even in the garden. It would be so special and dainty! I have mine and it is perfect for me, let’s design yours!
Let me know if I can help you creating your cafe’ life in your home by leaving your name in the box below. Ciao,
Valentina
www.Valentinadesigns.com

 

Copyright © 2011 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved

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Valentina Cirasola is an Italian Interior Designer in business since 1990 and a former Fashion Designer. She has been developing projects in the USA and Europe serving a variegated group of fun people. She blends well fashion and interior in any of her design work. She loves to remodel homes and loves to turn unattractive spaces into castles. Being Italian born and raised, Valentina’s design work has been influenced by Classicism and stylish, timeless designs. She will create your everyday living with a certain luxury without taking away a comfortable living. Find her books on

Amazon: http://goo.gl/xUZfk0
Barnes&Nobles: http://goo.gl/q7dQ3w

 

 

From Royal Hats To Garden Hats | Valentina Cirasola | Designer

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It is so refreshing to see hats completing women’s attires again. I believe this year has marked the advent of a new era for hats. We have seen many extravagant creations on the stage of the British Royal wedding last April.  (Photo left: fanpop.com)

Some hats were awesome, some not so quite and some others puzzled me how they stood up on women’s head in a perfect balance, but they all had the goal to shock and amaze. After all it wasn’t a common day for business as usual, it was the day of the royal wedding, every guest had the license to overdue.

A couple of weeks later, at the Orticola Trade Show in Milano, I was happily surprised to see so many women in hats again, but this was a garden show, a place where vendors were showing their green novelties in gardens and orchards, flowers, bulbs, vegetables and the latest in garden technology. I truly loved the display of floral hats in all shapes, forms and colors, a display of elegance and femininity returning on earth. Women are feeling comfortable in their own skin again, no longer having the need to mimic men in any of their life expressions.

(Photo right found on: http://fioriefoglie.tgcom24.it/2011/05/07/inaugurata-orticola-2011-festa-di-fiori-piante-e-cappelli/#more-9022)

This year the trend of artificial flowers in communion with artificial food fetish is showing up everywhere, in jewelry, on hats, in dresses and even in the way stores display their fashion merchandise. A casual summer dress this year looks very flowery and colorful. The lightweight lends itself to the games that a soft wind might play between the fabric.

Artificial flowers made of silk and papyrus with a hint of perfume were already known in Egypt around 3000 B.C., also used by Greek and Roman women. During the Middle Age artificial flowers became so fashionable in upper class circles of France that Paris and Lyon became well-famous for manufacturing the most stunning creations of accessories with flowers, fruits and ribbons destined to embellish the already extravagant ladies’ dresses.

Fresh flowers adorned women and men’s body as well all through different historic periods.
During the Middle Age girls in age to be married decorated their head with a single wreath of fresh flowers, an indication of virginity.

During the Rococo’ and the French Empire Era women decorated their voluptuous dresses with fresh flowers and ribbons, while men’s final touch was to wear a gardenia on the lapel, a custom men continued well in today’s dressing: a gardenia for a tuxedo and a carnation for an evening suit.

Earlier, I mentioned how creative some trendy stores are treating the display of the merchandise in their windows this Spring. The usage of fruits, vegetables and some beautiful insects like butterflies instill harmony and peace in the shopper’s view, it doesn’t really look like they are selling. Selling is a real art, when selling with nature in mind, it feels good and inviting.

(Photo: Anthropologie)

I am loving the soft look of Spring and Summer collection this year, it is spiritual, organic, sexy and it is calling for love. You will find it also transported in the interiors of eclectic homes where natural fabrics and colors mix and blend with bricks or distressed wall finishes.
When in doubt, call the expert and I shall be here for you. Please leave your name in the box below. Ciao,
Valentina

Open this link and scroll down the page to find my Fashion Services

https://valentinadesigns.com/services

 

Copyright © 2011 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved

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Valentina Cirasola is an Italian Interior and Fashion Designer, working in the USA and Europe. She blends well fashion and interior in any of her design work. She loves to remodel homes and loves to create the unusual.
She is the author of three books available on
Amazon: http://goo.gl/xUZfk0
Barnes&Nobles: http://goo.gl/q7dQ3w

Fashion Plays With Opposites This Fall | Valentina Cirasola | Designer

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Girl-Pink-Green-1aItalians take fashion really serious in their everyday dressing and their everyday life. Home fashion is directly related to the catwalk fashion, the two fields live with each other in harmony. Even though we cannot change our home fashion every time a fashion collection is presented on the catwalk, we can at least take some guidance from it to renew our spaces.

The colors this years are dark wines with gold highlights, grey shades with brown, aubergine with silver tones, pinks with reds, bronze with copper and silver accents, silver and whites, animal prints with lines, floral with geometric. Most of the opposites are represented for both men and women. All of these combinations work well with traditional or contemporary styles, making our design work for both sexes a bit easier. Even the passamanterie as an accent can add a touch of class and personality in a modern décor and deconstruct a traditional décor with graphic lines can lighten and revive a tired home style.

I read about the collection of a few fashion designers for fall 2010. I love their ideas, their use of colors, patterns and the impact they will have on both fashion and home interiors. I love the game of opposites they want us to play. At times fashion takes a plain boring direction, but this fall, we have a lot to revise.

The new hues are daring and delicious, poetic with a touch of medieval beauty.
British designer Alexander McQueen revived the hand-loomed Jacquard with the impression of digital photography. McQueen left us his beautiful collection, representing his vision of Medieval Madonnas and Byzantine Empresses before he died in Feb.2010 at age 40. I absolutely adore his 2010 collection.
(Photo left: Alexander McQueen).

Designer, Andrew Gn, calls his fall collection a “modern rococo”, wanting to return to the 18th-century look with a touch of 21st century. He sees narrow jackets with stand up collars and row of front buttons. He revives the passamanterie trimming on velvet coats and bustier. The highlights of his collection are embroidered leather on the shoulder of coats, or neckline, oversize belt buckles with heavy incrustations and anything ruched, which hide all that women don’t want to show.

(Photo left-right: Andrew GN)

As you can see playing with opposites makes an interesting environment, one that speaks about character.

If your home is in the neutral tones the new bold colors of this fall 2010 are very chic and lively, add some pieces of dramatic furniture and bold accessories, voila’ you have a new home to come to. Perhaps the only thing to do for an upgraded look is to change throw pillows and window coverings, or the accessories all together, or repaint some walls in the metallic faux finish tones and not necessarily all in this order.

Homes do need to be refreshed every so often, your eyes and your soul will appreciate it. Allow colors into your life and allow your friends to enjoy it too, after all, beauty is made to share with others.

My design career started in fashion and for 15 years I was very happy in my fashion company before settling in the interior designing business. Now, with the long fashion experience and my 20 years in interior designing, I can guide my clients in the right choices for their beautiful homes.

I would love to help you or your friends and family transitioning into new color and the new you. Love to hear your comment. Ciao,
Valentina

Fashion Services
https://valentinadesigns.com/services#fashion-services

 

 

Copyright © 2010 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved

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Valentina Cirasola has been in business as a designer since 1990, she is also a former fashion designer. She has helped a variegated group of fun people realizing their dreams with homes, offices, interiors, and exteriors. She blends well fashion and interior in any of her design work. She loves to create the unusual. She is known as the “colorist”.
Valentina is also a published author of ©Come Mia Nonna – A Return To Simplicity. Her second book: ©Sins Of A Queen is in the printing and due to be released around Nov.2010 and she is the forthcoming author of the book on 
©RED-A Voyage Into Colors.
Amazon: http://goo.gl/xUZfk0
Barnes&Nobles: http://goo.gl/q7dQ3w

 

Sailors Are In Town | Valentina Cirasola | Interior Designer

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Girl-Pink-Green-1aStripes again! It seems as every other year stripes want to be vacationing with us in the Summer. This year white and blue stripes are everywhere with a touch of red and gold. The new city relaxed elegance is not about common striped t-shirts, white short pants, and white tennis shoes.

HelloSailor
(Cropped jacket Polyvore)

It is about combining elegant daytime jackets with gold buttons, or decorative vintage passamantery with city shorts and sandals propped on high heels.
(Ellie Anchor Pin Up Hell Pumps)

Nautical theme and cruise time will give us the refreshing feeling of elegant nights spent at the Yacht Club, even if we don’t go on any vacation. Treat yourself with these small luxuries!

In your home this Summer relax with beach style décor. Create a cottage easy living with coastal breezy colors. Keep it sophisticated, then any beach accent can be added. (Photo left BH&G).

The fabric on the chairs embellished with mother of pearls buttons makes an elegant beach feeling.
It is just right to host casual parties in semi-formal settings. The slip-on covers can be changed in the fall with autumn colors for a different mood.

Change the look of any mirrors with an incrustation of seashells that you have brought back from the island vacations and if you didn’t go to the island lately, any gift shop or import shop in your town will have shells of all shapes, sizes, and colors. Shells look very happy on coffee tables in decorative glass vases, even more happy if they are repurposed in your garden as decorative elements, or as a potting solution.

Molly Wood Garden Design

(Photo right: Giant shell planter -Photo Sunset)

In your backyard, it is easy to create a party for two, a romantic evening tête-a-tête. Use a red and white striped cloth to cover a small bistro table. Cover the seat of a swing and all the cushions around with Sunbrella fabric in stripes and anchor print fabric. Serve a delicious salad in a large clam-shaped bowl. Light candles everywhere, uncork a bottle of Italian prosecco, or a Bellini if you like and a romantic night on the Italian Riviera awaits just outside your backyard. Don’t’ forget to wear one of those nautical shoes as in my photographs. High heels look even better when laying down…..I mean on the grass…..

Please forward this article to anyone you think might be interested in reading it and let me know what you think by leaving a comment below. Thank you. Ciao,
Valentina

Fashion Services
https://valentinadesigns.com/services#fashion-services

 


Copyright © 2010 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved

Val:FarfalleStampValentina Cirasola is an Italian Interior and Fashion Designer, working in the USA and Europe. She marries well fashion and interior in any of her design work. She loves to remodel homes and loves to unattractive spaces into castles.
Valentina is so far a published author 
Amazon: http://goo.gl/qNxXrB
Barnes&Nobles: http://goo.gl/q7dQ3w 

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Ciao Mamma | Valentina Cirasola | Designer

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Girl-Pink-Green-1aThe Mother – a Queen of every household. My mom sure was The Queen and a lot more! She was our friend and confidant, the angel of our home. Today, I think she was named Angela not by mistake, I think there is a correlation between her name and who she was in her life. Her blond hair was like a golden aura around her face, her blue eyes were so transparent, one could see inside of her soul. Some of her friends thought her eyes reflected the bluish-green water of Adriatic sea in Italy, where we lived.

She was a simple person with a big heart and strong believes. She had empathy and was always ready to help others.
In her early life as a young lady, she was forced into learning to sew, but she would have preferred to go to school to become a psychologist. She was into people, could understand their problems and always gave her helping hand to resolve some rough situations people could not resolve on their own.

“Put a passion in everything you do and make the best of what you have” she kept telling us. This is what she did when she was forced in that trade, but after a while, she became such an expert in the field of sewing that she turned it into a lifetime business. And boy she was good! Her dress designs were in a high demand. She produced only exclusive, one of kind garment for the élite clientele.

(Above Simplicity magazine)

She found her inspiration in magazines like Mademoiselle and Simplicity and made those patterns much better. “Simplicity is the key of elegance” she kept saying. I learned that so well, that I made it the motto of my life. Actually, to that, I added mine: “When life is simple and easy, God answers”.

WWII was a time of scarcity, but for my mom was a time of increased creativity.
She made original dresses out of scrap fabrics. I remember her telling me stories of improvisation and studying better ways to get the most of everything, food, clothing and all the necessary elements of living.

During the war-time, she was photographed many times in one blue-white polka dots dress, which was turned over many times around. One time she had added white-collar and white cuffs, the next time she took off the white details and added red buttons and a red belt. “Make the best of what’s available to you”.

My mom was good at creating fashionable hats also with scraps of materials. Hats of the ’40s were so elegant and feminine.

She faced a lot of adversities in life that made her a tough human being, but she never complained. She thought that out of every adversity there is always something good to learn and found the way to turn any negative experience into a positive one. I am so grateful for this precious teaching.
Her love for life was exceptional.

In the early part of my career, I became a fashion designer, even though she kept repeating: “The needle is very small but very heavy. Go to school and learn a profession instead”. I could not help being attracted by her amazing creations. With a few elegant movements and a few folding and draping of fabrics onto mannequins, she would make any piece of cloth come alive into a beautiful dress. I must thank her for my love of colors, fabrics, and fashion, all the things I took from her and made a successful career for myself. I must thank her for the well-decorated home we lived in, simple and functional, but full of people who brought us much love. Simplicity is the rule I live by. I must thank her for showing me what really matters the most in life and for teaching how any hardship can be turned into a positive experience.

Today, in my career of interior designer, I do well just because my mom taught me how to be into people, how to listen to their problems and how to resolve them. After 20 years of serving a variegated group of people, I am still having a load of fun.
Long live mamma in our hearts and in the hearts of all the people you touched.
Valentina
Interior Designer
in business since 1990 and loving it!

Fashion Services
https://valentinadesigns.com/services#fashion-services

 

 

 

Copyright © 2010 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved

VBlue2

Valentina Cirasola is a trained Fashion and Interior Designer, born in Italy in a family of artists. Style surrounded her since the beginning of her life. Her many years of experience led her to offer consultations in both specializations and now she can remodel homes as well as personal images. She is passionate about colors and encourages her clients to express their individual style in their homes and with the clothes they wear. To better help people all over the world, she offers consultations online. She is the author of three books. Get your copy of Valentina’s book on colors: ©RED-A Voyage Into Colors on

Amazon: http://goo.gl/qNxXrB

Barnes&Nobles: http://goo.gl/q7dQ3w

 

 

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Silk Stockings | Valentina Cirasola | Designer

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Girl-Pink-Green-1aThe other day, I was visiting a friend at her home. We were sitting across from each other shooting the breeze, talking about this and that and a bit of all.
She noticed my shoes and complimented me on how good I can put things together, but the surprise was underneath. I lifted my pant legs and showed her my silk stocking in golden olive color.

The look in her face was clearly puzzled as if she was asking: What are you wearing? She was surprised to know that I was wearing silk stockings and was even more surprised to learn that my pair of stockings belonged to my mother fifteen years ago. I have had them for that long and who knows how long my mother had that pair of stockings before I subtracted it from her.
Stockings are not the invention of the last century, au contraire.
(Photo left: Cervin Rive Gauche 100% silk lace top hold-ups, £41.99
Available in noir (black), white, gazelle or ivory)

They came about when in the late 1600 fashion dictated that men and women would be equally effeminate in their attires, thus competing with each others in elegance and style. It was a must to complete every outfit with silk stocking, red or pink, or sky blue and light yellow for the most refined people. Silk stockings became so popular that Colbert, French Secretary Of State, ordered the building near Paris of a royal manufacture with about 200 looms to produce the silk stockings in a variety of colors. He also founded a professional school where silk stockings became a new subject to study, therefore making it a new branch of fashion until our days.

Of course with colorful silk stockings, the need, or let’s say the desire to have colorful shoes was born. The shoes were also made of silk, with medium-high heels, embellished with large buckles, roses and rosettes, ribbons and shimmering beads, but the color of the shoes had to be contrasting to the silk stockings.
Human fantasy has no limits, since then a variety of silk stockings were created. Pearls decorated silk stockings of the 1700 and silk embroiders decorated the silk stocking of the 1800. In the ’30s women dresses became much shorter and for the first time the knees were in full view, therefore much more attention was given to colored stockings. Women soon preferred the nude look of the legs, the simple skin color silk stockings lasted until WWII, when the silk fabric was needed to fabricate parachutes for our men fighting in the war. So it happened that the manufactures discovered the nylon, a product made from petroleum and much more fragile than the silk.

Remember I said I possessed my mother’s silk stockings since fifteen years ago and I don’t know how long she had it before I took them? Well, my nylons have never lasted more fifteen days, until I discovered to keep them in the freezer and not in the drawers of my dresser. The cold of the freezer apparently stretches the life of the nylons only a little longer.
I am thinking silk stockings should come back in fashion, they are eco-friendly, will save your money, feel absolutely luxurious and they add luminosity to women’ legs.

(http://www.allposters.com)

I can help decorating with fun posters of pin-up girls in silk stockings to add a playful look to any room, especially music rooms, studios, entries, bathrooms, home gym. Try a little eccentricity here and there when decorating your home to add a punch of fantasy and character, because the banal décor gets old and tiresome after a while.

A good reading is the book: “A Pair of Silk Stockings”. It is an eclectic collection of long-neglected short stories by great women writers best known for their novels. The book includes The Watsons by Jane Austen, The Half Brothers by Elizabeth Gaskell, A Pair of Silk Stockings by Kate Chopin, The Red Room by L.M. Montgomery, Bliss by Katherine Mansfield, The Parvenue by Mary Shelley, The Legacy by Virginia Woolf, and The Wronged Woman by Winifred Holtby. Find it on Amazon, $13.00.

In the 1957 film Silk Stockings Cyd Charisse was so gracefully beautiful and the music so throbbing. Her endless legs were perfect for the silk stockings.

Copyright © 2010 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved

Please forward this article to anyone you think might be interested in reading it and let me know what you think by leaving a comment below. Thank you.
In service and with love. Ciao,
Valentina

Open this link and scroll down the page to find my Fashion Services

https://valentinadesigns.com/services

 

 

 

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VBlueEyesValentina Cirasola is an Italian Interior and Fashion Designer, working in the USA and Europe. She marries well fashion and interior in any of her design work. She loves to remodel homes and loves to turn ugly spaces into castles. Fashion designing has been her first career choice that made her happy in her own company for fifteen years.
Author of the book: ©Come Mia Nonna–A Return to Simplicity
Book website: outskirtspress.com/ComeMiaNonna
Author of the forthcoming book on the subject of colors: ©RED-A Voyage Into Colors.

Amazon: http://goo.gl/xUZfk0
Barnes&Nobles: http://goo.gl/q7dQ3w

 

Every Trick Is Permitted At Carnival, Just Need The Right Mask | Valentina Cirasola | Interior Designer

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In Europe around this time of the year we celebrate Carnevale, or Mardi Gras. The Christian calendar marks Carnevale as the period between the Epiphany and the first day of Lent, this being the day when all the fatty food must end until Easter Day. In Austria and Bavaria, Carnevale called Fashing starts the day of the Epiphany, in Cologne it starts at 11:11 of Nov.11.

At Mardi Gras, the day before Lent, we Europeans consume a variety of meat dish, food high in calories and proteins, lot of fried food and stuffed food, but on the Lent day and for forty consecutive days, until Easter, the diet must be light and lean.
In Carnevale time every trick is expected and accepted. I remember the sugar, or the white flour being thrown at the passerby in the streets, especially if they were wearing a dark coat. Getting mad was out of the question, next street corner it would have happened again. In the history of time, Carnevale has been a magic time of divertissement, debauchery, costume parties, eating, unrestrained sex, and a time during which life challenges were momentarily forgotten.

The etymology of the word Carnevale could be deriving from the Latin “carrus navalis” or from the Medieval “carnem levare” which it means to eliminate the meat from the diet for 40 days as the Lent requires. On Ash Wednesday, Christian people must spread ashes on the forehead as a sign of repentance.
During Carnevale it is a must to wear masks to disguise one’s identity, but the usage of masks is not a novelty of today, it goes back to Paleolithic time, when the chief of tribes wore masks during spiritual, or magical propitiatory rituals to invoke riches, or to get rid of maleficent spirits. Romans celebrated their Gods with Carnevale festivities. The use of masks concealed their licentious behaviors and their social status, allowing old and young, rich and poor, nobles, servants, slaves and prostitutes to mingle and dance together until dawn.

During the festivities of Carnevale, Romans celebrated Bacchus, the God of wines, with rivers of wines and long hours of dances all in the streets of Rome, hence the name Bacchanalia. The gladiators entertained the public and the king of the festivities, elected by the people for only the duration of the feasts, organized public games to which everybody could participate.

(Click on each photo to view it larger).

 

In Italy, masks for Carnevale have been used in theatre plays, especially in Goldoni’s comedies, a famous Venetian writer of the 1700 and in the Commedia Dell’Arte in the second half of the 16th century, based on improvisation on stage. Plays of Commedia dell’Arte are still fascinating and alive in the arts and in the memories of theatre lovers.

Carnevale in Venice, renowned all over the world, is a magical and mysterious event that takes place every year around February, it calls for unruly behavior and the masks are breath-taking. Browsing in costumes through the narrow streets of a foggy Venice is like walking in the 16th century. Everybody is disguised, people laughing, chatting, a glass of wine here, a dance there. Carnevale in Venice is what it was and still is.

Paintings of Venice Carnevale scenes, or paintings of masks can be included into today’s home décor very easily. Think about a room in a total white color scheme with very colorful paintings on the walls as the Geraldine Arata’s art work. She knows how to capture on canvas the mystery of Venice and the complicity of secretive lovers. Her oil paintings are beautifully executed, colorful and unconventional.

(Defiance – Geraldine Arata)

Another example could be a room painted in grey gun-metal faux finish with a modern style décor and Geraldine’s colorful mask paintings just laid casually against the walls, or hung on a wall washed with light. Loose white chiffon draperies swinging in the windows as a sweet melody in Venice would carry two lovers in each other arms.

Find Geraldine Arata at:
www.aratafineartgallery.com
450 Columbus St.
San Francisco, CA 94133

As an Italian born designer and a lover of Commedia dell’Arte, I can help recreating the mystery of Venice, its flamboyance and Bohemian atmosphere into today’s home décor and I can help placing this particular art in a special home. It takes a sunny eye to see the sun light.

Copyright © 2010 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved

Please forward this article to anyone you think might be interested in reading it and let me know what you think by leaving a comment below. Thank you. Ciao,
Valentina

www.Valentinadesigns.com

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VBlue2Valentina Cirasola is an Italian Interior and Fashion Designer, working in the USA and Europe. She combines well fashion and interior in any of her design work. She loves to remodel homes and loves to create the unusual. Author of the forthcoming book on the subject of Colors.
Author of the book: ©Come Mia Nonna–A Return to Simplicity
Amazon: http://goo.gl/xUZfk0
Barnes&Nobles:http://goo.gl/q7dQ3w

outskirtspress.com/ComeMiaNonna


Color Pink On Stage For Valentine’s Day | Valentina Cirasola | Interior Designer

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The color Pink is a color that I am not particularly fond of, but I have learned to appreciate it in some situations. Pink is sweeter than red. It reminds me of the cotton candy and bubble gum I never ate, they just looked too sweet; it reminds me of strawberry ice cream I delighted myself during many Italian summers. Girls between the ages of 10 and 15 years old absolutely adore pink.

We generally associate pink with the femininity and everything delicate. In the mind of some people, pink indicates the weaker sex. Go figure! From time to time, Pink is also seen in men’s fashion, but it is short-lived and it goes in and out of style. I love to see men with some interesting pink garment on!

Both red and pink denote love, but while red stirs up hot passion, pink is romantic. The pink gentle and delicate vibrations have a proven soothing effect on one’s behavior. You could almost say that pink literally fills the heart with love! However, we must be careful, when too much pink is used in an interior space, it can create a floating effect and the illusion of living in a padded and protected environment.

(Photo: Gordon Roberts)

If using Feng Shui theory the best use for pink (Fire color) is in the Earth Element area of one’s space, as it is connected to Love and Marriage. Earth is a productive cycle of the Feng Shui’s five elements.

In designing a room, the Fire energy can be simulated by painting an accent wall in a delicate pink, or by adding some pink in the accessories. The “hot version” of pink is Magenta Pink, which we are seeing more and more often, as it brings a fiery energy, especially when coupled with orange, also a Fire Element color. A beautiful way to bring pink color into one’s personal or business space is to place a bowl of rose quartz crystals, as these rock crystals carry strong natural and healing love vibrations.

Powder room, or creative offices are the perfect spaces to decorate in pink. Use it sparingly in a girl’s bedroom. Combining pink with extravagant colors will show we are not afraid of colors and criticism, but we must know how to do it right.

Besides the marvelous pink and orange combination, pink and green, or pink and black are the best vibrant combinations. In Feng Shui, a sharp-looking pink and green from medium to dark is an active color combination. It brings together the energy of Fire Element (Pink) and Wood (Green). This combination will sooth and strengthen our human energy.

(Photo credits given to the respective owners of the images in this board)

Pink and black together are a very elegant and beautiful “retro” combination, very much used in the style of the ‘20s and ‘30s. In Feng Shui these colors brings out the energies of Fire (Pink) and Deep Water (Black). Black alone represents a Yin feminine energy; it stands for stability and protection, thus it is needed to ground other colors and to dilute the energy of pink. All shades of pink turn from playful, girlish colors into sophisticated colors when combined with black or gray, or shades of blue from medium to dark.

As a career woman and since I passed the age of 15, I would never wear pink shoes, not at work, not for walking at leisure, not at an elegant affair, not for fun either, but that’s just me! A touch of pink in the wardrobe is welcome, but only a touch. I am here to help you getting in touch with any color in your fashion and in your home. My design services include architectural colors analysis and colors for home fashion. For the benefits of my Clients, my color and design services are also available on-line. Please tell others about it and feel free to forward this article to someone you think will enjoy receiving the same tips. Comments are welcomed. Just leave your name in the box below. Ciao,
Valentina

www.Valentinadesigns.com

Copyright © 2010 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved

Valentina Cirasola is an Italian Interior and Fashion Designer, working in the USA and Europe. She blends fashion and interior well in any of her design work. She loves to remodel homes and loves to turn unattractive spaces into castles. Valentina is knows as a colorist. Her life is a continuous evolvement of colorful events. Author of the forthcoming book on the subject of Colors. Stay tuned! Author of the book: ©Come Mia Nonna–A Return to Simplicity
Amazon: http://goo.gl/xUZfk0 
Barnes&Nobles: http://goo.gl/q7dQ3w  

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Dress With Art | Valentina Cirasola | Interior Designer

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“Dress With Art” is the password of this year unfriendly economy.
Luxury is not a thing of the past yet, but people are spending less. We are all rediscovering quality and we are buying items that are going to last longer, thus we will be throwing away less.
Looking at magazines of the ’40 my mother left in her attic, I am discovering one pattern common to all. The world was at war then, women could not afford many dresses and outfits. To make themselves look rich, abundant, elegant and to give the impression the war did not affect them, a lot of lipstick and make-up was used, in fact, cosmetics houses were booming. Women closets were not filled with an overabundance of dresses and outfits. Dresses were the same all year round, just worn differently.  To keep a fresh look on the one and only dress women-owned, they would sew it in many ways, they turned it inside out a few times during the year, or they added details, like belts and collars one time and sparkles the next time.

Studying the trends of the end of 2009 and the trends of 2010, it seems we are returning to the ’40 again. Many people I know are returning to sewing and to customize their own clothes (it is so refreshing to see creativity walking in the streets again, versus the same look everywhere) and many people are encouraged to economize on many fronts. Old values are coming back, it boils down to what matters the most.
While people are thinking of creative ways to spend their money, fashion designers are having fun bringing back old comfort. Gloves and hats are reappearing on the scene, just like Donna Karen’s padded shoulders and red lipstick presented last year in Paris and New York (thank you for femininity again). Laura Biagiotti invented a collection named LaurArt in the year 2007, to tribute her collections of futurist’s art paintings. Greek fashion creator Mary Katrantzou focused on vintage fatisse bottles of perfumes of big houses (Jean-Paul Gaultier, Givenchy, Guerlain …). She adopted the distinctive shapes of these famous bottles to outline women’s bodies.

Fatisse01

(DesignBoom – Mary Katrantzou dresses – women in perfume bottles)

Fatisse02

“Dress With Art”  as a concept has entered the home too.  People are buying affordable luxury items making sure it will provide the same comfort and ambiance with one added thing: durability.  Many people are considering authentic vintage and old pieces of furniture to be re-faced with an artistic flair. I see much Classicism mixed with some contemporary pieces, competing with strong classic elements in the architecture.
Kitchens are more and more the heart of the house, in fact, people are cooking more at home than eating out and grocery stores are booming.
Bathrooms continue to represent the cocooning and the spa at home for relaxation with every possible gadget and novelty: chromotherapy, aromatherapy, music, entertainment, fireplace and fridge for champagne.
With digital art on wallpaper, walls don’t have to be painted anymore, they can be covered with unique digital art, which is waterproof, mold proof, no glue, or water needed. Do you fancy the look of a Roman bath? Find a scenery that suits you, the experts will transfer it digitally on paper. Do you paint art as a hobby, or as a  profession? You can have your own art transferred digitally on paper for your own enjoyment. Until you get tired of that scene, the walls don’t have to be painted ever again.
The 2010  trends continue to carry colors on the walls that are emulating the metal finishes, with an aged, hammered or burnished texture, perfect with a neutral palette. Beautiful artistic walls can be created.  The new concept of a functional home is not to overstuff it with lot of nonsense dust collectors, but to have only what matters the most.
Valentina

Fashion Services

https://valentinadesigns.com/services#fashion-services

 

 

 


Copyright © 2010 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved

ValentinaValentina  Interiors & Designs is an Interior and Fashion design firm.
Valentina, the principal designer, and owner is a trained designer and has been in business since 1990. She works on consultation and produces design concepts for remodeling, upgrading, new homes, décor restyling and home fashion. Valentina has been featured in Italy on: “Vogue” magazine and many prominent publications in California. She also has made two appearances on T.V. Comcast Channel 15.

Amazon: http://goo.gl/xUZfk0 and Barnes&Nobles: http://goo.gl/q7dQ3w

 Author of the forthcoming book on the subject of Colors

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