Friday, April 25, 2014

Bravo, Antonio Martins: Designer I Love

Today I have a fantastically detailed and thrilling post for you—all about the highly original and uplifting bedroom designed by San Francisco/Lisbon designer Antonio Martins for the San Francisco Decorator Showcase, which opens tomorrow at 3660 Jackson Street, San Francisco.

Martins’ blue and white bedroom is a breath-takingly original concept—inspired by the quirky traditional blue and white handpained tiles that adorn his family’s hometown, Lisbon, Portugal.

But, the brilliant Antonio has boldly introduced into this traditional concept the iconic white plaster tables of my great friend and mentor, John Dickinson, and the most handsome and eccentric hand-carved rosewood four-poster Goanese bed you have ever seen.

For designers’ inspiration I’ve gathered Antonio’s original presentation rendering for his design of he room. He presented it to the Showcase Design Advisory Board (of which I am an member).

Dear Readers—please sit down with a glass of fine Port, in Antonio's honor, to study his design, to gasp at the ‘before shots’, to meet his family, and to see all the ‘behind the scenes’ work that went into his glorious room.

Oh, and you'll learn about the history of Portuguese azulejos as well.

Concerning Port...I prefer violet-scented Quinta de Vargellas, 1998, from the Douro Valley. Seek out a bottle (or two).

Antonio's design will thrill modernists, decorative artists, Portuguese historians, design traditionalists, John Dickinson fans, and artists alike. I’m smitten.

Read on to find fun details of the decorative murals, and of artists at play. 

Antonio Martins is truly international—and the murals, antiques and even the white plaster John Dickinson tables reflect his worldly peregrinations.

Antonio has offices in San Francisco and in Lisbon. He was born in Portugal. His mother flew to San Francisco from her residence in Lisbon to see her son’s design, and add constant encouragement. See her baby picture below, in a charming collection (shown here exclusively) of Antonio’s archival family portraits.

But note that this is so much more than an homage to antiques. There’s the fearless addition of a white floor, simply decorated windows, unexpected modern sculptural furniture, and personal collections on the Dickinson tables. The composition is confidently cohesive and at the same time there are jolts of contrast, and pleasing juxtapositions.

Designer Antonio Martins

The Concept of Antonio Martins' Bedroom

“My design started with a broken and falling-apart antique bed, that belonged to my family,” said Antonio.

Antonio has turned an unimaginative and rather dated master bedroom (see ‘before’ photos for the dramatic display of transformation) into a captivating space that takes a modern approach on historical elements.

“Staying true to and honoring my heritage, I wanted to showcase an antique Portuguese Bilros bed, carefully preserved by my family since the 18th century,” said Antonio.

The bed—eccentric and dramatic—commands attention and is the primary inspiration for the space. Made of “Pau-Santo,” an exotic rosewood, the design of the bed adheres to the strict guidelines of the period.

“I have always loved this bed, which incorporates our family crest, and the Showcase was the perfect excuse to bring it to San Francisco,” says Antonio.

As a celebration of Portuguese culture, the walls are covered by blue and white tiles (Portuguese Azulejos), faithful copies of 18th century patterns and designs.

Offering a 21st century twist on traditional form and pattern, Antonio has expanded the tile size and shuffled the images to become a modern piece of art.

“I love the use of traditional designs and techniques in a whole new way.”

A total of 243 oversized tiles were hand-painted by master decorative painters Linda Horning and Katherine Jacobus, working together for the first time in this challenging and historically-accurate task. 

The ‘before’ shots make the new décor and its freshness even more impressive:

Antonio's proposal to the Showcase Design Advisory Board

The Story of the Magnificent Rosewood Bed:  The Restoration

“All by Hand… The Goanese bed (Goa, on the west coast of India was once a Portuguese colony) was completely carved by hand. It is crafted of Pau Santo, which was an extremely hard exotic rosewood. The rare wood was very heavy and expensive and even the best pieces of furniture had to be “pieced together” to create the larger posts. You can clearly see how it was pieced together to create the posts and the headboard.” — Antonio Martins

All About Antonio and His Family

Antonio told me, exclusively for The Style Saloniste:

“My family is originally from Portugal but moved to Brazil in the late 1800s.

The entire family kept moving between Portugal and Brazil and my mother was born in Brazil but moved back to Portugal when she was 12.

My mother (the baby in the pictures) and siblings, Recife, Brazil, circa 1939

In Portugal, they had farms and land in the north of Portugal. When my grandfather moved to Brazil he had a coffee and corn processing plant.

My grandmother, aunt and mother, Portugal, circa 1967

I was born in Portugal and moved to Brazil in 1975 at the age of six years old. We lived in Rio and my father had several businesses but his main passion was a coffee farm in the state of Minas Gerais in central Brazil (where all the diamonds are from).

Me and brothers and sister. I am the second from the right – Lisbon, Portugal, 1974

After graduating high school, in 1988, I moved to Switzerland to attend Hotel Management School—Centre Internationale de Glion.

After graduation, I was hired by Hyatt International, and moved to Hong Kong where I lived for about 10 years, working in Germany, Italy, Bangkok, and throughout Southeast Asia. All of this time I was studying the design and architecture of each country.

I finally moved in 2000 to Chicago to work at the head office of Hyatt International and worked in development projects in Paris, 
Sao Paulo, Chicago and Argentina. Finally I resigned from Hyatt in 2001 and moved to San Francisco to join the Academy of Art University where I taught and studied…and then I opened my own design studios in San Francisco and in Lisbon.”

Inspiration for the ‘Azulejos’, Handpainted on the Walls

Mueeu do Azulejo in Lisbon used as a reference

One of the museum's centuries old tiles that served as inspiration

Artists at Play

Antonio Martins with decorative artists Linda Horning (left) and Katherine Jacobus (right) who created the playful and exquisite murals inspired by Portuguese traditional blue and white tiles, azulejos, so ubiquitous in Lisbon. Photo by Philip Bewley.

About Katherine Jacobus:
San Francisco decorative artist Katherine Jacobus has been creating interiors based on antiquity, fanciful imagination and realism for over 20 years. A conceptual thinker, Jacobus tailors each project to the individual needs and executes projects with skill and professionalism. Her work has been published in House Beautiful, and Elle Décor. Jacobus holds a BFA in Illustration and Interior Design from Parsons School of Design

About Linda Horning:
San Francisco decorative artist Linda Horning has worked as a decorative painter for 30 years. Working primarily in the Bay Area, she has had the distinct pleasure of working with some of the premier decorators and Icons of style. She graduated from UC Davis with a Masters in Fine Art. Drawing from this fine arts background provides invaluable material and technical skills, as well as a broader historical perspective of style and design. Her work has been published in “Ann Getty Interior Style” by Diane Dorrans Saeks. 


Antonio Martins Interior Design Team
- Fallon Rosa
- Erin Roberts
- Regina Anchustegui
- Jeffrey Ypon

Tile-Inspired Decorative Painting
- Linda Horning
- Katherine Jacobus
- Assisted by Erin Roberts of Antonio Martins Interior Design

Interior photos
- Drew Kelly

Drapery and bedspread

- Patricia Andrade of Andrade Window Treatments

Portrait of Antonio Martins with Linda Horning and Katherine Jacobus
- Philip Bewley

Fireplace and metal work
- Scott Adkins from Profab metal design

- Francisco Melchor

Bed Restoration
- Fabian Fine Furniture

Spiderweb console by Scala – sold through Coup d’Etat.

John Dickson bedside tables sold through Coup d’Etat.

Pair of stools beside bed by Formations, sold through Shears & Window.

18th century Statue from Candice Barnes

Tokyo chair sold through Coup d’Etat, San Francisco.

Antonio’s cousin Fernanda Sarmento:  Thank you for letting the bed travel to San Francisco!

Antonio Martins Interior Design
Showplace Square West
550 15th Street

San Francisco, CA 94103

t. 415.377.6136

Thank you, Antonio. Your room is so fresh, and I admire your decision to include the John Dickinson Pieces — Diane

The 2014 San Francisco Decorator Showcase

National media sponsor: Hearst Design Group
Kitchen: sponsored by House Beautiful

The kitchen, designed by Steven Miller, will be published later this year in detail in House Beautiful, as House Beautiful’s Kitchen of the Year.

The 2014 San Francisco Decorator Showcase will be open from April 26 through May 26. Open Tuesdays through Sundays and on Memorial Day.

Top interior designers whose talents will be on display include (in random order) Antonio Martins, BAMO, Coddington Design, Geoffrey de Sousa Interior Design, Heather Hilliard, Jane Richardson Mack, Jonathan Rachman, Kristi Will, SagreraBrazil Design, Shelley & Co, MacCaul Turner Design and many top landscape designers, decorative artists, and artists.

3660 Jackson is an exceptional estate in the middle of Presidio Heights originally built in 1907 by the architectural team of Walter Danforth Bliss and William Baker Faville for their clients Rose and Alfred Sutro. The elegant red brick estate stands out with a façade of meticulously groomed climbing ficus. Inside, the spacious home features exquisitely detailed woodwork, a gracious entry with a three-story staircase and coffered skylight, a beautiful wood-paneled library, a music room, and several rooms with expansive views of the Presidio and San Francisco Bay. For the first time this year, the Showcase will also feature House Beautiful magazine’s Kitchen of the Year, the must-see destination for brilliant kitchen design and innovative culinary happenings, designed by Steven Miller, of San Francisco’s Steven Miller Design Studio.

For the past 37 years, the annual San Francisco Decorator Showcase has benefited San Francisco University High School's financial aid program, raising over $12.5 million and benefiting hundreds of students. The San Francisco Decorator Showcase allows San Francisco University High School to offer financial aid to its students. It is through the community's continued support that quality education has been made available over the past three decades to hundreds of deserving Bay Area students.

Please call (415) 447-5830 or visit

Monday, April 21, 2014

A Celebration: Jane Scott Hodges Launches Her Inspiring New Book, ‘Linens for Every Room and Occasion’ Published This Month by Rizzoli

Do you lust for lovely embroidered bed linens? I do. Are you mad for monograms? I definitely am.

Meet Jane Scott Hodges, owner/founder of New Orleans-based Leontine Linens—and let her be your expert guide to gracious living and lavish couture-level, custom-designed linens.

Her book is an essential reference for designers, decorators, brides-to-be and every perfectionist who wants the most beautiful beds.

Come with me to meet Jane Scott.

Jane Scott Hodges at a recent booksigning in New Orleans.

‘Linens for Every Room and Occasion’ by Jane Scott Hodges (April, Rizzoli). The book’s 240 pages are full of expert advice, designer tips, dozens of ideas, and insider advice on monograms, textiles, embroidery, quilting, and a world of linens for all rooms.

To sleep, perchance to dream. A dreamy bedroom with bedroom style by Leontine Linens.

Jane Scott Hodges will launch her handsome new book, ‘Linens For Every Room and Occasion’ (Rizzoli) in San Francisco this week.

Friends and designers will attend a lavish book-signing Wednesday April 23 at Hudson Grace, the ultra-chic home design store founded by Monelle Totah and Gary McNaughton in Presidio Heights, San Francisco.

The event is hosted by Newell Turner, editorial director of the Hearst Design Group, a longtime friend and colleague of mine.

Newell is also in town for the opening of the San Francisco Decorator Showcase, which is open from April 26 to May 26 at 3660 Jackson Street, San Francisco. Newell and his team will introduce House Beautiful’s Kitchen of the Year, designed by Steven Miller.

Hearst Design Group Editorial Director Newell Turner and Jane Scott Hodges at her recent book signing in New York.

It’s going to be a very exciting design week in the city—bubbling with energy, design talent, accomplished decorators, classical architects, social stars, and Jane Scott Hodges’ wonderful and information-packed book.

Newell Turner is also giving a private dinner in Jane Scott’s honor in San Francisco.

My guess is that everyone—between sips of wine and nibbles of hors d’oeuvres and signatures—will be quizzing Jane Scott on new styles, monogram designs, decorating concepts, and elegant modern ideas. I can’t wait.

All About Jane Scott

From the beginning of her career as founder of Leontine Linens in New Orleans, Jane Scott Hodges has focused on creating exquisite custom linens that are superbly hand-crafted, unique, expressive, personal and practical for both formal and informal entertaining. 

At the heart of Jane Scott’s effort has been to pair private luxury with essential pragmatism, so that newlywed trousseaux and a lifetime of linens can reflect modern tastes and well as classical styles, colors and fabrics

“Jane Scott and I met on the day before she gave birth to her daughter Talley in New Orleans and have remained friends ever since. Back then she ran Leontine Linens out of a guest room and I have been buying from her continuously. 

Jane Scott and I have done all kinds of projects from bed linens to cosmetics cases and jewelry bags. There is something utterly special and singular about her perfect monogram designs. They are deliciously old world. 

I collect solid colored bedding — for example I have sheeting in canary yellow; sky blue; lilac and cafe au lait. I mix the solid colored sheeting with white piqué bedspreads. Now I am pining for a geranium pink set.” — Alexis Traina, exclusively for THE STYLE SALONISTE

Exceptional Craftsmanship

In 2002, Leontine Linens acquired the Eleanor Beard Studio. This historic company located in Hardinsburg, Kentucky since 1921, has made couture linens known the world over for their superb detail. Each sewer has an acquired specialty, ranging from cutting to hand-stitching to patternmaking. Once an order is placed, each task is specially delegated to an artisan based on her specialty. Leontine designs all products to be as sturdy as they are beautiful. Nearly all of the products are washer- and dryer-safe, with only a select few cashmere pieces requiring special care. A testament to the quality of the products is the archives of antique and vintage Eleanor Beard pieces that line the Leontine office shelves. Quilts dating back to the 1930s look as if they were sewn just yesterday.

The Leontine experience is equally as important. From its inception, the company began in-home consultations. Unlike the traditional retail setting, the in-home appointment allows for an immediate sense of understanding about how the client lives and what products and designs best compliment his or her lifestyle. The company’s sales representatives intuitively guide the client through the selection process to help them select each design element.

Jane Scott works closely with top interior designers around the country, including Charlotte Moss (who wrote the foreword for ‘Linens for Every Room and Occasion’, as well as for private clients, historic estates, country retreats, beach houses, yachts, and modern penthouses. Among her designer are Matthew Carter, Gwen Driscoll, Beth, Webb, Katie Ridder, and Leslie Lux—and decorators too fabulous and divine to mention.

Leontine collaborates with ultra-private brides and celebrities (though Jane Scott never name-drops, and she respects the privacy and confidentiality of each client). Jane Scott loves to collaborate with interior designers and architects for projects of every scale. 

Products by Leontine

Leontine reflects the individual attention paid to it by the artisans. Leontine Linens are custom-made and tailored to each client. Product offerings include, but are not limited to, the following:

Bedding – Quilts, Down, Coverlets, Duvets, Shams, Sheets, Bed Skirts

Bath – Terry Towels, Linen Guest Towels, Shower Curtains

Table Linens – Table Cloths, Table Runners, Dinner Napkins, Placemats, Cocktail Napkins

Accessories – Jewelry, Make-up, Toiletry, Travel, and Boudoir Accessories

Bed Clothes – Robes, Gowns, Pajama Sets, Nightshirts, and Quilted Bed Jackets

Good Works

Design and style and making her clients happy are important to Jane Scott Hodges. She is also a passionate philanthropist. Throughtout the year she supports many organizations, including:

Preservation Resource Center (New Orleans)

Hermann-Grima + Gallier Historic Houses (New Orleans)

The Bone Marrow Foundation (New York)

Lenox Hill Neighborhood House (New York)

Bluegrass Conservancy (Lexington)

St. Joseph Hospital Foundation (Lexington)

The Bluegrass Trust (Lexington)


Rizzoli published the new ‘Linens: For Every Room and Occasion’ by Jane Scott Hodges, with a Foreword by Charlotte Moss. Photography is by Paul Costello.

Images from the book are used here with express permission of Rizzoli.

Jane Scott Hodges with Charlotte Moss (center).


New Orleans Flagship
3806 Magazine Street
New Orleans

Available by appointment in the following cities and surrounding areas:

• Atlanta, GA

• Dallas, TX

• Houston, TX

• Lexington, KY

• New Orleans, LA

• New York, NY

Mark your calendars:


The 2014 Showcase will be at 3660 Jackson Street, San Francisco.

The house will be open from April 26–May 26.