Peek Inside Diane von Furstenberg's Idyllic Country Home
In New York, Diane von Furstenberg sleeps in a glass-walled bedroom in an apartment atop her headquarters and flagship store smack in the middle of the West Side's Meatpacking District, Manhattan's mecca for everything new and everyone noisy. Through the windows you can hear trucks slamming against the cobblestone streets, and you note that the only trees in view are those planted up on the High Line, the former train tracks that have been miraculously transformed into an elevated park that necklaces the area. "It's very exciting here; I love it," says von Furstenberg, surveying the neighborhood she was instrumental in creating. "But as a place to be alone with your thoughts or the people you care about, it's not exactly what nature had in mind."
Mother Nature, however, would probably declare her country home just this side of paradise. For in western Connecticut, along a road so winding, visitors always swear they've gone the wrong way, you come to a place that's seductively sylvan. Even before getting out of your car, you're trying to figure out ways to get the woman who's welcoming you to let you stay longer. Frankly, if you pulled up to a log cabin lit by a hand-cranked generator, you still might never want to leave, since von Furstenberg is as celebrated for her beguiling charm as she is for fashioning one of retail's greatest success stories, which started back in the '70s with her now-legendary wrap dresses.
For InStyle’s Home & Design issue, photographer James Merrell gave us an inside look at the designer's country home. Click on the photo above to take a closer look.
A bronze Viennese art nouveau mirror, iron “coatracks” by Saint Clair Cemin, and an armored trunk.
Convinced that a library “should be filled with light and comfortable furniture,” von Furstenberg chose plush sofas, art deco chairs, and a dense pile rug with her initials (not visible here) woven into the design.
The Living Room
One of the designer’s favorite places to relax with a book is on an antique French daybed piled high with cushions. Here she’s pictured with her late Jack Russell terrier, Shannon.
The Master Bathroom
There's fashion history in DVF's master bathroom, and it's not made of Carrara marble. The screen was created by one of Coco Chanel's assistants out of strips of silk that once belonged to Chanel herself.
In her bedroom is the only small table in the house, a delicate 19th-century French piece she has paired with a modern swirl-back, three-footed brass chair by Salvador Dalí.
Big tables like this rustic wood slab by Nakashima "are my obsession, because I love spreading things out," she says. "It's a great way to zero in on the best ideas."
“I have an unfortunate weakness for beautiful furniture that kicks in especially whenI travel," she says.