unexpected guests: french by design.
i’m turning the tables a little bit today on si from french by design. usually si shares with us some most excellent and even exotic home tours from all over the world, but today she’s our unexpected guest! si currently lives in a beautiful charlotte, north carolina home, but she may be moving west very soon, so i’d thought we’d get sentimental today and share with you her vintage treasures and the very eclectic place she and her family call home right now. to see more inspiring decor ideas from si, visit her blog french by design.
Where do you live, and what’s your favorite thing to do in your neighborhood?
We’ve lived in Charlotte, North Carolina for the past four years – prior to that we lived in Provence, France, with a one-year layover in Morocco before coming to Charlotte. My favorite thing to do in my neighborhood here is running or taking long walks with Daisy, the family golden retriever.
Do you have a secret spot or off the beaten path place in your city you think we should know about?
I recently discovered NodA, Charlotte’s historic art district, a more “grungy” and a hipper area in town than the gentrified Ballantyne neighborhood. I love the vibe there, and the industrial vintage feel the buildings have. Shopping wise, you’ll find me often at The Depot at Gibson Mill in Concord, North carolina. This place is impressive, with booths and booths of antique pieces and vintage treasures.
What are your top online shops?
I have a thing for authentic vintage. So if I’m not scouting local flea markets or antique stores, I shop on Etsy, Ebay. I also recently joined Luvocracy, a site where many bloggers and community members share their finds throughout the web. This thing is addictive and very dangerous.
What five things can’t you live without?
My family comes first, dogs included. I just can’t live without my tribe. Then comes coffee. Good European, strong coffee. Cheese and wine come third on my list. After, and I’m sad to admit it, my computer and/ or iPad – we are trying to pledge tech free weekends as a family. Though very hard to implement, they are very beneficial.
How would you describe your style?
Eclectic above all…I grew up in Morocco, with a French mother and a Berber father, so the ethnic influence is very present in my style. I’m also very fond of Scandinavian design, for its simplicity and clean lines. My style does not follow any interior design rule. It has to feel good and feel right.
If you could go shopping with anyone in the world, who would it be?
If I could, I’d go shop with Charles and Ray Eames. This couple fascinates me and they were such visionaries! If I had to pick a contemporary shopper, I’d pick Paola Navone. This gal has some serious style and a unique eye.
Who are a few of your favorite Instagrammers?
I love Old Brand New’s Dabito feed [@dabito]. He has a great artistic eye. I also keep stalking photographer Daniella Witte [@daniellawitte] on instagram. Her shots are always sharp and I love her eye on raw beauty.
Favorite quote or expression?
Oh, tough one, I have so many favorite quotes. But if I had to pick one, I’d say Dorothy Parker’s “The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity.”
Other favorites are:
“Wild women don’t get the blues” – Ida Prather Cox
“Anyone can be cool, but awesome takes practice.” – Lorraine Peterson
“The two most important things in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.“ – Mark twain
“There are people who have money, and people who are rich.” – Coco Chanel
What souvenir did you bring back from your last trip?
Some vintage black and white postcards from Paris and an Arne Jacobsen alphabet mug from the Merci Store.
What bores you to death?
I’d say people who take themselves too seriously, the know-it-alls, and the “uncurious” in general. I have a very hard time entertaining myself with such people.