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Friday, June 6, 2014

Fabulous Room Friday 06.06.14

kelie grosso hb

I have loved this beautiful dining room by Seattle designer, Kelie Grosso of Maison Luxe since I first saw it in House Beautiful a couple of years ago. There are so many lovely details from the scenic “View of India”, framed panels by de Gournay  to the sumptuous turquoise Louis XVI-style dining chairs, paired with an elegant ebony dining table by Oly and a crystal chandelier. The relaxed drapery panels with grosgrain trim and ivory cowhide provide a relaxed juxtaposition to the more formal elements in the room resulting in a chic, vibrant space that is certain to be enjoyed by all who set foot in it. What is your favorite element in this room? I am torn between the gorgeous de Gournay panels and the turquoise chairs.

As I mentioned in this week’s “Currently Obsessed” post, Monday is a big day here at La Dolce Vita! We will be unveiling a completely new look for the blog and will be moving to WordPress. You can still access LDV via the current address and I will be posting reminders to reroute your path over to for a few weeks, but eventually the paloma81 address will no longer be active and you will be taken directly to the new site. I am nervous about transferring nearly SEVEN years of posts, but my team assures me that I am in good hands and that everything will be fine. If you read LDV through a browser or subscription service, please, please, please click through on Monday and update your subscription once the blog’s new URL is live. Be sure to tune in next week for the big reveal and a few other exciting surprises! Have a wonderful weekend!


Thursday, June 5, 2014

Design by the Details: Eglomise

Pronounce: A-glo-mees-A (hard "A" sounds)

What: Back-painted glass so design show through on front using gold- & silver-leaf.

History: There is a long tradition of this technique in Italy, examples as far back as pre-Roman times.  It was revived in Italy in the 13th century and then again by Jean-Baptiste Glomy, a French art dealer and decorator to which the technique received it's name.

Use: Used to gussy-up furniture, mirrors, frames, and other decorative objects.  Since it is made with gold & silver-leaf it is not inexpensive. But it adds dimension and layers to an object that nothing else can. Great for adding a bit of glam to a space or introducing furniture that is not visually heavy.  Light bounces around and is softer than plain mirror or glass.

Eglomise mirror featured in Michelle Smith home.

Miriam Ellner Eglomise Entry

Celerie Kemble Kips Bay Showhouse 2011 featuring eglomise ceiling by Miriam Ellner.

Geoffrey Bradfield designed home in Palm Beach with intricate eglomise bedside table.

Eglomise closet doors by Darren Henault

Learn more of Design by the Details:

I'd love to hear from you in the comments below if this elegant technique could find a place in your home.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Chic Combinations: Blue and White

Hey guys! Arianna here, back with some more color inspiration. Today I'm putting the spotlight on a combo that I can't get enough of - blue and white. It's a classic that will never go out of style. Often used in coastal decor and chic outdoor spaces, it's reminiscent of summer.
classic blue and white living room
blue and white outdoor space
blue and white interiors
outdoor dining in blue and white
Pieces to create the look:
Chic Combo: Blue & White // Arianna Belle for La Dolce Vita

Image sources: 1- design by Victoria Hagan, photo by Michael Mundy, via Elle Decor; 2- design by Lonni Paul, photo by Michael Garland, via Traditional Home; 3- via Elle Decor; 4- design by David Lawrence, photo by Jose Picayo, via House Beautiful; 5- via DIY Network

Currently Obsessed: June 2014

I have been bad lately and haven’t posted one of these “Currently Obsessed” posts in a few months. I apologize as I know a lot of you enjoy them. As a creature of habit, I can sometimes get wrapped up in the same things and didn’t feel like my obsessions varied too much in the past few months, but now that summer is here, I am seeing things through a fresh set of eyes and have all kinds of fun new things to obsess about and share with you. One very exciting thing I am currently obsessed with is the impending redesign and re-launch of La Dolce Vita which will take place next Monday, June 9th! We will have a chic new look and are switching over to WordPress, which I am a little nervous about. For those of you who read LDV through a browser or email subscription, I will be sure to post reminders for a few weeks to ask you to please update your feeds and switch over to the new site on In the meantime, here is what I can’t get enough of lately!


TV Show: It just started on Monday, but I am already loving Bravo’s Ladies of London. It’s like the Real Housewives, but in a better setting and with stylish, more cultured people including British aristocrats and some American women who strive to be completely accepted into British society. Did anyone else watch the premier? Thoughts?

Song: I have been listening to the Haim album non-stop in my car. I love every last song, but can’t get enough of “FallIng”!

Instagrammer: I visited Violet Grey’s chic retail space on Melrose Place when I was in L.A. last month and have been following them on Instagram ever since. I love their affinity for all things vintage and fabulous.


Pinterest User: Speaking of chic, everything Spanish blogger, Ms. de Winter pins is super chic. She has such a great eye and beautiful, timeless taste.

chic mrs de la winter

Fashion Muse: Hmm, one particular person does not come to mind right now, but I’ll tell you who it is NOT—Rihanna. Did anyone else think her look at the CFDAs this week was completely vulgar and unoriginal or am I just a prude? She left nothing to the imagination and looked like a Vegas showgirl. You know who did get it right this week? Julianne Moore in a navy Rosie Assoulin jumpsuit and Lupita Nyongo in Alexander McQueen at the Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic. They look elegant, timeless, and effortless.


Inspiring Designer: I have been obsessing over everything the great Albert Hadley ever did. He got it right every single time. His work is enduring and transcends place and time.

albert hadley

Color: I love the beautiful coral hue of the peonies I have been enjoying for the past several weeks. They don’t last that long, but the peony season is so short that I keep buying them like some sort of fiend. They have sort of taken over my Instagram feed! Coral Peonies via La Dolce Vita | Paloma Contreras Instagram

Drink du Jour: Ice cold water during the day and a nice glass of Rose after hours. My favorite right now is Pigmentum’s Malbec Rose. If you are typically a red wine drinker, you’ll love this as it is slightly less fruity than most Roses. I find that it is really well-balanced. It’s great for a bottle under $15!


Excitement: This week, I received some amazing news that one of my design projects will be featured in one of my favorite national magazines! It is a thrilling moment for Paloma Contreras Design! I am also very excited to unveil LDV’s new look next week.

Paloma Contreras Design | Vibirnum | Barnacle Cluster | Greek Key | Leopard

Guilty Pleasure: I am a sucker for ice cream. My husband and I just discovered this out of this world flavor. So good!

BB-sea-salt-caramel1m Accessory: I am loving my Christen Maxwell tote that I had custom-monogrammed at my favorite Houston store, A Bientot. It is such a versatile bag, but feels so special because of the unique and beautiful monogram.


Trips Being Planned: Unfortunately, there are no real vacations on the horizon. Luckily for me, I love my work so much that work trips are still fun and full of inspiration. I’ll be back in Los Angeles in a couple of weeks and then it’s Minneapolis and Las Vegas next month. I will definitely be visiting Melrose Place again once I am back in LA. I took the photo below on my trip there last month. So chic!

Melrose Place Los Angeles via La Dolce Vita

What are you currently obsessed with? I would love to know what you can’t get enough of right now!


Tuesday, June 3, 2014

The Style Files: Susan Feldman


Since its inception in March of 2009, One Kings Lane has grown to be a household name and daily destination for all types of design aficionados. The company celebrated its fifth anniversary this year and over the course of its first five years, One Kings Lane has attracted millions of regular customers and has completely revolutionized the way in which we shop for products for our homes. One Kings Lane was born out of co-founder Susan Feldman’s very real need to furnish her home in Los Angeles after living in apartments in New York since her college years. Susan found the process of finding exactly what she wanted and needed for her home extremely daunting and longed for a one-stop-shop of sorts. As fate would have it, Susan met her business partner and co-founder of One Kings Lane, Alison Pincus shortly thereafter. The rest, as they say is history—in this case, trailblazing, game-changing history.

I have long admired Susan for her business acumen and moxie—it takes a lot of courage to try something so huge that no one has done before. I’ve recently had the pleasure of getting to know her on a more personal level and she is one of the sweetest, most upbeat people in this industry. If I had her busy travel schedule, I don’t know that I would have such great energy, so kudos to Susan! Susan is exactly the type of woman that young girls should look up to and aspire to be like. She is kind, intelligent, forward-thinking, and had the ability to identify a true need in the marketplace, subsequently creating a truly unique company that continues to differentiate itself from the competitors that have come along over the years. Susan and I recently had a conversation about her decorating style, travels, and favorite things. Enjoy!


Paloma Contreras: Has living in Los Angeles influenced the way you decorate?

Susan Feldman: Living in a home in LA after living in an apartment in Manhattan for so many years has definitely changed the way I decorate and think about my home. Living in LA is just easier and more laid back.

SusansLivingRoom {Susan’s Living Room in Los Angeles}

PC: What do you think your home says about you?

SF: My home is warm, inviting, and comfortable. I think it becomes apparent that my family is my number one priority when you look around. I enjoy entertaining in a relaxing and easy-going manner, and my home has many great nooks in which to unwind. I think you’d also be able to see that I love decorating with a good neutral palette.

susan feldman bath

PC: What do you love most about your career as Co-Founder and Chief Merchandising Officer of One Kings Lane?

SF: The amazing team of people that I get to work with and be inspired by every single day.

rugs {Susan has an active hand in selecting the merchandise for One Kings Lane. Here she is atop a stack or rugs she selected!}

PC: Where do you turn for inspiration?

SF: I love to travel. I’ve found that visiting new places and destinations always gets my creativity flowing.

india{Susan on a Recent Visit to India}

PC: What is your guilty pleasure?

SF: Accessories. A girl just can’t have enough.

hat {Susan on the hunt for more great accessories!}

PC: What trait do you most admire in a person?

SF: Integrity.

susan_feldman_office_tour_02{Susan’s Office in Los Angeles}

PC: You travel a lot, scouring the globe for fabulous finds for One Kings Lane. Do you have a favorite destination that you never tire of?

SF: It has to be India. I have been there eight times since starting One Kings Lane. Every time I go, I am so inspired and discover something new and fabulous about the country.

susan martyn mary india  {Susan with Famed Designers Martyn Lawrence Bullard and Mary McDonald during a Trip to India that was featured on Million Dollar Decorators}

PC: What do you consider to be your greatest achievement?

SF: On a personal level, it is my family. Professionally, it is founding One Kings Lane.

susan_feldman_office_tour_05 {Personal and Professional Mementos in Susan’s Office}

PC: What is your idea of living “la dolce vita”?

SF: I dream about living in a villa in Tuscany and having a constant stream of family and friends come to visit. I imagine exploring and allowing my creativity to go wild.

ned lambton villa ad {Musician Ned Lambton’s Spectacular Tuscan Villa in Siena, Italy via Architectural Digest}

PC: What can we look forward to next from you?

SF: We debuted two proprietary brands named Celandine and Delfinia last year. They are two distinct lines of bedding and bath products that our customers have absolutely loved because of the quality and style. This year, we are working on introducing more proprietary product that continues to be an incredible expression of the One Kings Lane brand. I’m excited about what we are developing.

susan_feldman_office_tour_03 {Susan’s Desk in her Los Angeles Office | Office Images via One Kings Lane}



Go-To Outfit: Fall/Winter—Jeans, Navy Silk Blouse, Black Leather Jacket, Hermes Belt, Black Suede Boots; Spring/Summer—Grey T-Shirt, White Jeans, Strappy Sandals

Style Mantra: Classic with a Twist

Scent: L’Artisan Premier Figuier and on the weekends, Shalimar—a throwback to my younger days

Jewelry: diamond study, Rolex watch, and wedding band

Color I Never Tire of: Navy

Flower: Peonies

Indispensible Design Element: Gorgeous doors

Era for Design: It’s hard to pick one. My aesthetic is so eclectic that I gravitate to many types of design

Dream Project: To Build A House

Hostess Gift: Vintage Lassi Cup from India or a Mint Julep Cup with a Lottery Ticket inside of It


Meal: Breakfast at the Chateau Marmont

Drink: Water with Lemon or Wine

Way to Unwind after a Long Day at Work: Dinner with my Husband, Bob

3 Things I Love about LA: the weather, creativity, and the fact that everybody wants to come and visit.

Weekend Destination: I enjoy trying lots of different places. Cabo, Colorado, Big Sur, Malibu, and Paris

Hotel: Pavillion de la Reine in Paris

Museum: The Tate Britain in London

Artist: Robert Rauschenenberg

Song that Always Puts Me in a Good Mood: “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough”

Actor/Actress: Audrey Hepburn

Prized Possession: My Kids

Greatest Extravagance: Getting my hair blown out a couple of times a week