He's an Attorney?!!!


Laws of style

Yes, he is an attorney working for the Louisiana Recovery Authority and no, he's not a model, though he does know how to strike a pose.   He's just one of a million attorneys, except, this attorney is different:  he's also a practicing interior designer.  Ty Larkins is based in Baton Rouge, Louisiana,  where he practices law by day and interior design by day too.  Not sure how he works that out - but he does, and quite effectively.   So effectively, that HGTV took notice of him and followed him around for a year while he designed a home for their series Dream House.  Married, with twin daughters to boot, Larkins has no formal interior design education, but judging from his portfolio,  he  doesn't need any!  His designs are young and fresh - contemporary with New Orleans styled French antiques thrown int0 the gumbo.  An online buddy of mine (more about her in a minute!) emailed me Larkins' web site and told me to check him out.  Hmmmm....who wouldn't?!  I'm not sure how long he's going to be able to keep practicing law when his interior design career takes off.  And it will - it's already growing daily.  Here's why:


This Baton Rouge stunner was completely remodeled and rehabed by Larkins, who just happens to live here with his family.  Can't say that I blame him - I'd loved to live here too.  Note the elegant terraced front porch and painted white brick.


The entrance hall in grand, Louisiana style.  I love this - I'm a sucker for gorgeous entry halls.  Also, I love the mirror casually leaning against the wall on the left.  Larkins mixes a French chest with Swedish side chairs .


The library, painted a soft brown, mixes the contemporary and the antique.  Antique french trumeau, velvet tailored sofa, Swedish side chairs, zebra skin, and seagrass all blend together to create a cool respite from the hot Louisiana sun.


Another shot of the library.  Notice his strong symmetrical design throughout the room.


The molding in the house is exquisite - in the dining room, an antique crystal chandelier dresses up the room  despite its relaxed toile slipcovered chairs.   Notice how Larkins runs the drapery rod across the wall.


The living room  - great urn figure over the mantel.  More gorgeous molding - here it's dentil.  I love how Larkins stacked side tables for an architectural effect on each side of the mantel.


Another shot of the living room.   The contemporary painting by local artist Tony Mose brings in the only color to the room.  A Swedish Mora clock is just outside the room to the left.


Another shot of the living room, with the zebra rug placed here instead of in the library.  Also, Larkins has used a French antique chair in place of the upholstered ones in the previous photograph.


And one last view of the living room - this time the ottoman and pillows wear orange accent colors.  The light fixture is a gorgeous French antique.


The master bath  - beautiful simplicity!  Note how Larkins uses tile up to the molding on his walls. 


The master bedroom, Larkins keeps it traditional.


The guest room - note the French day bed wears more contemporary bed coverings.  Grasscloth wallcovering.


Another view of the guest room.  Note the contemporary light fixture in this mostly traditional setting.


The back terrace runs the length of the house.  The living room opens up to here through french doors.


The backyard is typical  of  the New Orleans courtyard style of landscaping.  Notice the louvered doors set into the back wall.  I could be very happy sharing a mint julep here with Ty and his wife.                                    


Here's a bungalow that Larkins completely remodeled for a client.  The pink ottoman is the only touch of color in a room filled with white upholstery and slips.  Again, he uses a very contemporary light fixture mixed with French antiques.  The windows wear wrap around draperies which provide a strong contrast to all the white.


The bungalow's main room is divided between the living area and the dining area.  Dark ebony floors pop the white slips and sisal rugs.


In the sun room, Larkins installed French blue tiles on the ceiling - a strong contrast with the black lantern.  The room is paneled in famous Louisiana pecky cypress.


In the kitchen Larkins uses subway tile up to the molding giving the room a very clean appearance.


In the bathroom, Larkins again uses marble tiles up to the ceiling.  This must be his signature look!

To contact Ty Larkins, email him at  info@tylarkins.com or telephone him at 225-281-8060.


So - you're probably just dying to know who told me about Ty Larkins.  When I first started blogging last year, I got an email from a young, a very, very, young lady living in Lafayette, Louisiana.  She was just starting out on her own in the design business and was full of questions about how to go about doing this.  Now, I'm not the world's best businesswoman, to say the least.  The business aspect of Webb Design is my least favorite part of it all.  I can barely figure out profit margins and I still have trouble with the concept of net vs. list.  Despite my less than stellar business abilities, Andrea Veron, the young designer, seemed to think I had all the answers.  Over the past year we've exchanged multitudes of emails and phone calls where I, the  elder statesman (ha!), attempted to guide her along.  OK, - those who know me in real life, you quit cracking up right now -- Andrea has faith in my business acumen!   Andrea and her husband recently purchased a two story house that came with an extra structure in the back - and this is where she'll base her new business.  She has been keeping busy with clients, but like anyone starting out, she's always looking for new ones.   If you live in Lafayette or close by, consider giving Andrea a call.  After all, she's had great business training!



Andrea Veron's designs for a master bedroom.  I love how she mirrored the back wall of the niche and softened it with silk draperies.


Andrea loves to add dressmaker details - here she added braided trim to the velvet headboard. 


At this vignette - Andrea added trim to a skirted table.


For this job, Andrea used a wonderful green paint on the walls to set off the antique red velvet sofa.  I love the touch of zebra she added!


A vignette in the same room.


Against a wall, a large mirror makes the room seem more spacious.


Close up of another vignette.


Andrea's new gracious southern home in Lafayette, Louisiana.  Her interior design office will be based here.  Isn't it romantic looking with it's front gate?  To contact Andrea about hiring her, please email her at amveron@cox.net or telephone her at 337-962-1244.

A New Houston Shopping Destination For Antiques




Look for the Fiesta Mart on Alabama at Dunlavy, and you'll be near a hot pocket of stores selling reasonably priced, yet very chic antiques.   One of my favorite bargain-hunting destinations for antiques  - Antiques and Interiors on Dunlavy (3845 Dunlavy) shares the mall with this Fiesta.  And, another store,  The Country Gentleman, is just a few doors down.  Rumored to be closing its doors, Larry, The Country Gentleman himself, has taken on some partners and given his store a new look - he confirmed his store is remaining open for good.  Judging by the inventory I saw - this is welcomed news.    Besides these two stores,  a third one has now opened, making this Fiesta Mart Mall a force in Houston antiquing areas. 

While shopping there last week, I noticed this newly opened store called Boxwood Interiors.  It immediately called to me when, through the window, I glimpsed freshly laid seagrass matting stretching from the front door to the back.  It's amazing what spending a few extra dollars on seagrass will do to an old and ugly mall space.  The store is fresh and inviting with gleaming white walls and neutral colors.    But something about Boxwood seemed very familiar - why, I wondered aloud?  The ladies working there informed me that it looked familiar because Boxwood was actually owned by Foxglove, a small interiors shop doing business in the space up the street that Hien Lam Upholsterers once occupied.  Got that?  Foxglove, at 1420 Alabama, is a little off the beaten tract, and thus, it is still striving for big-time recognition.  With this new second store on the scene, it finally is  breaking out.   Helping out is neighbor Antiques and Interiors on Dunlavy which has been attracting new traffic daily - their tenants just keep getting better and better.  Hopefully, Boxwood will benefit from all this business going on at  the corner of Dunlavy and Alabama.  Just look for the Fiesta!

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Boxwood and Foxglove specialize in lighting fixtures, many of which come from Alcon - the fabulous lighting store next door to Foxglove on Alabama.   Another speciality is iron based tables, as seen above,  that can be custom ordered in any size or shape. 

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They sell custom upholstery at both Boxwood and Foxglove.  The sofas have striking shapes - nothing is common here.  The pieces are covered in natural linen with nailheads, which give them an contemporary edge.  I love this high armed sofa.

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This sofa is a modern take on an antique shape. 

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This sofa has a painted wood frame.   There are piles of custom pillows everywhere - these are accented with trim.

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Lamps are another speciality.  Here, french wine bottles are ready for shades.

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The right wall is ceiling to floor cubby holes filled with goodies, such as:

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Burlap wrapped lampshades in drum and other chic shapes.

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Glass canisters of different shapes.

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Coral and candles.

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Stone shapes for plants or TV clickers, you decide.

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The cubbyholes, light fixtures, and seagrass goes on and on.

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Boxwood and Foxglove both used this handsome damask on armchairs and ottomans.

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How convenient - a wire basket filled with candle sleeves.

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I love this ottoman  - tufted, wooden french legs and all!

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There are lots of mirrors and garden seats, framed prints and lamps.

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Greeting you at the door is this wooden light fixture -  this shape is all the rage right now.

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 Bid Boxwood goodbye and go next door.

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Next Stop:   The Country Gentleman specializes in antiques from Europe - with an emphasis on Spain.

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A set of six:  Italian chairs newly upholstered in linen.

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A French settee upholstered in a Fortuny style print.

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Last Stop:    Antiques and Interiors on Dunlavy.  An antique mall, with many different vendors - the quality keeps getting better and better.   Here a set of six chairs, slipcovered in linen hang out, waiting for a buyer.  I love these slips!

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A wooden French light fixture - this style is hot right now.

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A painted ottoman that would look as great  for the feet or as for a coffee table.

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A painted Swedish tea table - beautiful!

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I love the scale of this antique mirror.

If you are planning on visiting Antiques and Interiors on Dunlavy, be sure to stop in at Boxwood.  And while you are there, go next door and visit The Country Gentleman.    Three excellent antique stores and a Fiesta Food Mart to boot!