I now have a personal scanner -exciting news here at ArchitectDesign! I wanted so much to share with you one of my favorite books, which if you love beautiful historic interiors, you must add to your library - Potsdam by Gert Streidt (author) and Klaus Frahm (who provided the lush photography). This is probably the design book I refer to the most -my comfort blanket. As an exchange student in high school, I visited this neighborhood of palaces outside of Berlin and knew that this is what my passion was -great residential design. I remember standing in this room above in Sancoucci (which I've blogged about before HERE) as if it were yesterday and being totally blown away. Known as the Voltaire room (he supposedly lived here while in residence at the palace from 1750 till 1753), the room features wood paneling painted a beautiful yellow, marble floors and a built in bed (Thomas Jefferson wasn't the only one!). The painted woodwork features fruits cultivated in the palace park and greenhouse. The goal of the rococo movement, used here and at which the Germans excelled, was to integrate the surroundings into a unified whole -this was accomplished in this room by using the same motifs on the walls, ceiling, chandelier and even embroidery.
Another favorite room featured in the book is the private writing room of the royal quaters at the New Palace (literally across the park from Sanssouci). Again we have beautiful painted wood paneling but an unusual porcelain framed mirror above the fireplace (not painted wood which is more usual). The amazing writing table is covered in tortoise shell and silver plated bronze overlays; So over the top gorgeous.
I saved the best for last. This desk, by Karl Friedrich Schinkel, is probably my favorite piece of furniture ever. It is located in the ladies-in-waiting drawing room at the Charlottenhof Palace, an AMAZING neoclassical house from 1839, also designed by Schinkel. The interiors are very simple, almost modern, and were considered very middle class in their day. This simplicity was due to a small budget but also the changing of fashion. The building stands in sharp contrast to some of the earlier rococo palaces featured in the area.
I hope this whetted your appetite - the book would be a perfect christmas gift!

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