We take a peek at the beautiful home entertaining spaces of designers, artists, publishers and creatives, as featured in new interiors and recipe book ‘Be My Guest’ by Pierre Sauvage
THE MAGICAL FORMER STUDIO OF ARTIST SERGE POLIAKOFF IN PARIS, NOW OWNED BY HIS GRANDDAUGHTER, FEATURES HIS IMPACTFUL FRESCOS. IMAGE: © AMBROISE TEZENAS FROM BE MY GUEST: AT HOME WITH THE TASTEMAKERS, FLAMMARION, 2020
Whether hosting friends and family, or simply cooking for your household, these creative homes go to show how a few artful touches can create a magical atmosphere for entertaining. As featured in Pierre Sauvage’s new book, Be My Guest: The Art of Entertaining, we take a look at how these generous hosts entertain for two or 20 in their city apartments, French châteaux and rustic rural hideaways.
“Why a book on the art of entertaining?” writes Pierre. “Because I have a passion for it, quite simply. I adore the tableware, the flowers, the food—all the things that together add up to what the French call the art de vivre, the conviviality of dining among friends, of sharing the pleasures of the table, of indulging and stimulating the palate and all the other senses.”
This incredible home (above) belongs to gallerist Marie-Victoire Poliako, granddaughter of artist Serge Poliakoff, whose art and presence still inhabit the place. This family dacha, which became his studio, was presented as a gift by Russian-born Serge to his beloved wife and Marie-Victoire loves to share its magic with friends and family. She likes to lay tables with white plates and traditional hand-painted Russian folk art Khokhloma bowls, pewter cups and dishes and coloured glass flutes, glinting below flickering white candles.
(LEFT) A COLOURFUL AND LIGHTHEARTED BRUNCH SPOT AT THE LONDON HOME OF CHRISTINE D’ORNANO; (RIGHT) SIMPLE ELEGANCE ABOUNDS AT THIS TABLE LAID FOR LUNCH AT THE HOME OF CATHERINE AND MANUEL CANOVAS. IMAGES: © AMBROISE TEZENAS FROM BE MY GUEST: AT HOME WITH THE TASTEMAKERS, FLAMMARION, 2020
For Christine D’Ornano, global vice president of Sisley, conviviality is everything. Her colourful Notting Hill home (above left) perfectly matches her relaxed style of entertaining and she has inherited a natural aptitude for creating moments of lighthearted enjoyment for her guests. The word ‘informal’ is used a lot when describing her entertaining style and Christine’s dining area looks like a wonderfully cheerful spot for brunch. Plates by Catherine’s friend and artist Sydney Albertini sit on straw place mats which were brought back from Morocco and add a poetic touch to the table.
We adore the simple elegance of this table setting at the Normandy home of Catherine and Manuel Canovas, of the renowned French fabric house (above right). Authenticity of materials is a key element here: on the exotic wood kitchen table, antique objects including art nouveau silver vases from Christofle sit alongside Sarreguemines porcelain plates and linen placemats. Catherine always prefers placemats to tablecloths to show off the beauty of the wooden table and chooses plain linen or embroidered cotton textiles, found on her travels, in colours and patterns to match the plates.
AN AUTUMNAL FEAST AT THE NORMANDY HOME OF MONIQUE DUVEAU AND JOSE ESTEVES. IMAGE: © AMBROISE TEZENAS FROM BE MY GUEST: AT HOME WITH THE TASTEMAKERS, FLAMMARION, 2020
This former schoolhouse in Normandy (above) is now home to sculptor José Esteves and his partner, the culinary and decorative stylist Monique Duveau. Here, their open-plan kitchen housed in the school’s former dining room is set for an Autumnal feast. The napkins (sometimes hand-dyed by Monique) placed under the plates add splashes of extra colour, echoing the print of the tablecloth and the flower arrangements in tones that are both acid and soft. The table is always decorated with improvised floral arrangements composed with branches gathered in the woods and flowers from the garden, sometimes combined with fruits.
(LEFT) READY FOR LUNCH AT THE LGHT-FILLED PORTUGUESE HOME OF PATRICK PERRIN; (RIGHT) MARTINA MONDADORI ENCHANTS HER GUESTS WITH THESE INDIVIDUAL BOUQUETS IN MINIATURE VASES. IMAGES: © AMBROISE TEZENAS FROM BE MY GUEST: AT HOME WITH THE TASTEMAKERS, FLAMMARION, 2020
Patrick Perrin – Co-Founder of the PAD Art Fair and fourth-generation Parisian art dealer – loves nothing better than hosting impromptu lunch gatherings for a select group of friends at his rugged and refined house in Comporta, Portugal. In his open-plan kitchen (above left), the table is the nerve centre of the house, where everyone comes together. Patrick likes to decorate his entertaining spaces with a layer of textural rustic charm influenced by the local region. Here, he mixes plates decorated with shellfish and brightly coloured textiles with coral designs with traditional Portuguese glasses and fresh flowers.
At the Kensington home of Cabana magazine Founder Martina Mondadori (above right), entertaining comes with a light touch. Her style of natural materials and beautiful fabrics, together with a warm colour palette on the walls, makes for a beautiful yet unpretentious environment. When entertaining, Martina chooses plates that best express her mood that day, adding touches of colour from antique ceramics, Murano glasses and cutlery with coloured handles, and notes of cheerful spontaneity with posies of wildflowers.
RUSTIC CHARM ABOUNDS AT THIS FORMER POSTING INN NEAR PARIS. IMAGE: © AMBROISE TEZENAS FROM BE MY GUEST: AT HOME WITH THE TASTEMAKERS, FLAMMARION, 2020
This former posting inn in the Eure-et-Loir region of France (above) dates back to the 17th century and was a staging post for travellers on the road between Paris and Brittany. It is now owned by Jean-Baptiste Martin and Vincent Farelly, Founders of À Paris chez Antoinette Poisson, which specialises in beautiful artisanal domino wallpapers. A delightfully rustic home, here they enjoy being surrounded by nature and cooking together on the wood stove, original hearth or cold smoker outside. The public room of the inn is now a welcoming dining room, where the dinner service designed by Antoinette Poisson for Gien is laid, ready for the lighter versions of traditional dishes that the hosts love to create. Their tables are often decorated with simple glass carafes filled with eucalyptus, boughs of lilac and rosemary, cut or bought according to the season.
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