Monday, February 22, 2010

Let's Copy......Dressing Table

I'll be sharing lots of these in the coming months.

I love collecting decorating magazines and books. In my collections, I have marked many inspiration photos. They usually evolve into something a little like the original, but not recognizable from the magazine photos at all.

I'm going to deviate from that in the "Let's Copy" posts, so that you can see how to create some of those gorgeous magazine layouts yourself at home.

This is from one of my favorite inspiration books, Simply Romantic Decorating by Jessica McClintock, who by the way, has always been my idol. I love this dressing table from her own breathtakingly beautiful home.

This is my version...

My table is a little smaller and I've chosen items that are a lot like those on her table, but I already have these at home (click to enlarge). Remember, when copying a vignette, you only need to have the same colors and shape of the outline to pull off something that looks just like it. Notice the top outline on Ms McClintock's dressing table. It has a prominent item at the left and the highest item in the center with several groups of smaller items filling in the table.

I could have gone out to the garden and cleaned the snow from my terra-cotta bust, but chose instead a table chandelier with lots of prisms. My mirror is not nearly as fancy as hers, but it is a mirror with a metal frame and the right height. I chose to create a bit of height on the right side with a metal easel and frame.

To do this duplication at home, you'll need the following items: fabric for the underskirt, a beautiful lace piece and a quilted piece for the top.

I made my underskirt from some ivory curtain lining because it drapes so well (her's is linen). Cut it into 4 one yard (36") pieces and stitch a 3/4" casing in the top of each piece. Then, cut a piece of elastic 1/2" by the size of the table around plus about 24". After you have strung the elastic through the casing, put the elastic around the table and tie it in the back so it's tight to the table frame. Adjust the gathers to the sides and front. No need to hem as this one is just tucked under.

Tuck the lace piece (or pieces) under the elastic at a length of about half way down the length of the underskirt. Top it with a throw or piece of quilted fabric with a scalloped edge. Decorate with useful vanity items. Taadaa.....there you have it.


  1. Bertie it's beautiful! I love the lace on your table! Great job!!!

  2. Bertie your table looks so very much like the inspiration table. Love your choice of fabrics, everything works so well.
    You make it sound so easy and your instructions are very clear.

  3. Your version is just as gorgeous as hers, sweetpea. She has always been an inspiration to me also. I love her perfume a LOT.

  4. Bertie I love your version of Jessica McClintocks dressing table. Just beautiful! She is an ispiration of mine also. My sister sold her wedding gowns in her bridal shop. We all wore Jessica to Jen's wedding.
    Blessings, Shirl
    Shirls ROse Cottage


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