One of my favorite people in the design world has written a marvelous book and I’m so delighted to share it with you today! I had the pleasure of meeting Eddie Ross six years ago at one of the top places to shop for second hand treasures, the Alameda Pointe Antiques Faire that takes place once month in the Bay Area. I’ve followed him ever since including his Instagram adventures and his projects as East Coast Editor for Better Homes and Gardens. I’ll see Eddie again in a few weeks at the BHG Stylemaker Event in NYC, I’m excited to attend the workshops and mingle with fellow blogger friends.
Eddie has recently written a fabulous book Modern Mix, in it he shares the knowledge he’s acquired from years of experience spent treasure hunting at flea markets and thrift stores. Eddie has the most amazing taste and the ability to see the potential of an object, making something old feel fresh again with a modern twist, a true master of reinvention!
I had the opportunity to preview the book before it releases tomorrow, his voice is the one of that trusted friend you want with you when you shop second hand.This book is truly an amazing resource, filled with not only inspiring images but also Eddie’s insight and knowledge.
You won’t find “all new” in any of Eddie’s spaces or vignettes, always present is something he’s collected which makes the space shine. His book is a mantra for all of those who share in the idea that you enrich your home by curating a collection of things with history that speak to you.
Eddie was kind enough to answer a few questions about collecting and his new book, I love his amazing taste and value his insight, I’m sure you will too!
Kate: Most of the items featured in your book are from years of shopping flea markets, thrift stores, and yard sales. Remind us why good taste can come from these affordable sources for second hand décor.
Eddie: Second hand sources are goldmines for scoring undiscovered treasures. As tastes change, things inevitably fall out of fashion, turning up in places for us to discover all over again. Mixing in new finds gives them fresh life. Good taste, I’ve learned, is by no means dependent on how much you can afford. If you educate your eyes and take the time to look, the world opens up.
You are the master of styling artful tablescapes for special occasions, always mixing old and new. What styling tips can you offer for those wanting the wow factor but lack the ability to amass an eclectic collection of vintage flatware or textiles?
Personally, I think you can make a weekday dinner feel every bit as “special” as a special occasion, and it doesn’t have to be expensive or time consuming to do. Start with the basics: the handful of items I describe in the book’s chapter on curating essentials then go from there. For instance, borrow colors from your china and ask your dry cleaner’s seamstress to sew a tablecloth in an overall pattern that works in your dining room. Change out flowers, napkins and candles from season to season to create a fresh look every time. It’s not about how much you have; it’s about how you use it.
Your book is informative on all types of decorative glass from Venetian to Depression era. Colored glass has always been a favorite collectible of mine, available in many forms from hand blown to machine made. Does it really matter where glass originated when it comes to great style?
You’re right about that. If you love something enough, the origins of glassware – or anything else – don’t matter. But at the same time, knowing the basics makes you a better, more educated shopper. Modern Mix is not a primer on buying precious antiques, then hitting up the Road Show to cash in. It’s about waking up your senses to what you love – the colors, patterns, materials and shapes that feel like you – then training your eye to find them affordably.
Your collection of serving pieces is a dream! Tell us where you store all of the treasures you’ve collected all these years.
In the book, you’ll see one of my all-time favorite storage solutions – a utility cart from Lowe’s that I turned into a butler’s pantry on wheels. That way, everything I love and use the most to entertain stays stylishly close at hand. I’m also a big fan of metro shelving and clear storage containers with labels to cut down on the crazy during any styling emergencies. But like everything else in life, nothing’s perfect. You’ll still find a few platters and plates under the bed. Just don’t tell Jaithan !
Modern Mix is a book “about waking up your senses to what you love,” I couldn’t have said it better! The text is broken down into eight chapters: Inspire, Discover, Acquire, Restore, Curate, Mix, Style and Entertain and in them you’ll be inspired by over 350 images of Eddie’s arrangements and playful vignettes that inspire you to live creatively and stylishly on a budget. This book is truly a delight and so informative, I highly recommend you add it this one to your collection.
all images courtesy of Eddie Ross