The one thing that always surprises (and saddens me) is there are few, if any, great home decor stores in New York City. It’s hard to believe but it’s true, ABC Home is just a behemoth and while there are a couple of other shops, they are either too vintage for my taste or too millennial (all the shades of pink, all the succulents). Enter the new home area on the first floor at The Webster in Soho.
The eclectic, high-low, vintage/new mix of dishes, objets, lights and artwork, curated by the founder Laure and Stephane Parmentier, a well-known Paris-based interior designer, is spot on. The more you stand there and take it all in, the more you want a little bit of everything–the Gio Ponti designed flatware and light (exclusives), the dishes which were seconds rescued from a factory and reclaimed by adding gold to their cracks, elegant ribbed bowls created in a small town in Japan, and brilliant-colored stained glass trays created by a woman who repairs the stained glass in centuries old churches in Paris.
As Laure explained to me yesterday, “The Webster is very residential. Since we opened in Miami, people always felt at home, and always wanted to buy everything, all the furniture, all the accessories. It’s an extension of my home, so it always made sense for me to have some home elements.
It’s a mix of vintage pieces, timeless designs, and very recent pieces, which I think it is very important because it’s the way we do with the clothes, with fashion, is to mix and match. It’s not a full look.”
Then, Stephane chimed in, “I don’t believe in everything expensive or everything inexpensive. I don’t believe in life where everyday you are happy or everyday you are sad. It’s a mix and nice prices to make a small gift. Buy first for yourself, then for your friends to share. I love the word “sharing”. I love the word “giving”. I love the word “kind”. It maybe sounds strange but I think there are kinds objects also.”
I like the idea of kind objets, but even more I agree 100% with what Stephane then added: “I believe in one thing, using nice objects everyday. It doesn’t change your life, but changes, in the way, your mood. If I take my cereal in the morning with this plate [holding up a gorgeous hued bowl], with this [Gio Ponti spoon] and having this embroidered by a little grandma in Sicily by hand [gorgeous embroidered linen napkin]. I think it makes your life a little bit different.”
You don’t need ten cereal bowls, you need one good one, which syncs perfectly with my “buy less, buy better” motto. The best thing? If you can’t make it from your home to The Webster’s you can now shop it all online.
center photo, courtesy The Webster, all others, The Flair Index