One of my all time favorite Veranda covers was of Shannon and Andrew Newsom’s house, a young couple in Dallas who own the fabulous catalogue company, Wisteria – my personal favorite. It’s no coincidence that the Newsoms live a stylish life: Andrew’s mother Lisa Newsom is the founder/editor-in-chief of Veranda, while Shannon’s mother is the uber talented Houston interior designer and shop owner, Jane Moore. No wonder the younger Newsoms created such a wonderful company – they have design in their blood. I wrote about this house before here, but recently I’ve noticed that Wisteria has begun carrying more and more items based on the antiques found in their own home – mainly Swedish. While the Wisteria reproductions don’t have the same patina that antiques acquire over the years, the newer versions do have something the antiques lack: affordability. Swedish antiques are prohibitive in price to all but a lucky few, and with today’s economy, even less of the lucky few are willing to fork over the money to live with such priceless pieces, because, trust me, Swedish antiques are priceless! Wisteria’s new offerings are very welcomed, because while there are several companies that make Swedish reproductions, most are located in England – who has had a love affair with these painted pieces for years and years. To be sure, there are a few companies in the United States with great reproductions, Chelsea Editions comes to mind immediately, but their to-the-trade only line has to be ordered and you will wait and wait for delivery. In contrast, as long as their stock holds out, you can have a Swedish home overnight with Wisteria’s product. Another company that sells reproductions, GJ Styles, who just changed their name to Halo Styles, recently introduced a Swedish line. Though to-the-trade only – their catalogue is online and Cote de Texas will be more than willing to order their product for anyone, along with deep discounting! And not to forget – there is Tara Shaw who just last month debuted a gorgeous reproduction line, heavy with Swedish pieces. Again, though to-the-trade only, readers are welcome to order anything from Cote de Texas.
I’ve long wished to live with Swedish antiques, but truthfully, their prices are out of my budget. Perusing Wisteria’s latest catalogue, it occurred to me that finally – I could get some great Swedish chairs and tables and still have money left over for the beauty shop! While I realize even the reproduction prices are not “cheap” like Target or a flea market, they are substantially less than their antique counterparts where a single chair can go for over $2,000. So, let’s see if we can actually recreate a decent looking Swedish styled living room/dining room on a budget. Start with the above picture from the cover featuring a corner of the Newsom’s living room. Of course, as luck would have it, the very first picture would have to be nearly impossible to duplicate. The desk with the clock is so special – there isn’t anything like it on the reproduction market, but, lets try with this new piece from Wisteria, which may have been created just for this purpose!
To recreate the clock/secretary, from Wisteria, at just $2199.00 – though not cheap, it is a fraction of what an original Swedish antique would cost. The finish is really special on this piece. And be sure to watch for sales. Wisteria is known for having great ones!
At Halo Styles, there is this Swedish desk for around the same amount as Wisteria’s.
For even less, from Halo Styles, is this Swedish cabinet with the traditional detailing.
The desk with a Swedish clock is highly unusual and very rare. If you were looking for an exact copy, Tara Shaw Antiques has this beauty in their store right now. This piece is the real thing – not a copy!!!!!
In the original picture, the chair is Swedish. I found an exact copy of the chair in the Tara Shaw Maison line! It’s an amazing reproduction, at a fraction of the cost of an original.
To replicate the altar candlestick found in the living room - Target on-line has this set of three - a true bargain at $149.00.
Aidan Gray – to-the-trade – has a wonderful assortment of reasonable reproduction altar candlesticks. Their web site will find a retailer in your area, or Cote de Texas can order them for you.
And this beautiful assortment of altar candlesticks is available from Tara Shaw Maison. Again, Tara’s reproductions are near perfection. Antique altar candlesticks start at over $1,000 and up, way up, so buying a reproduction makes good fiscal sense.
On this side of the living room, the Newsom’s installed an antique limestone fireplace. While, this is definitely cost prohibitive, there are companies that sell copies of these mantels – another way to get the look without paying the price.
Mantels are made of concrete to resemble the original limestone antiques, and they come in a variety of shapes and sizes. One day I would love to replace my wood mantel with something like this that includes an overmantel.
The next important element in this room are the chairs. These could be either Swedish or French bergeres. Halo Styles has two Swedish armchairs that would be great substitutes. This one has open arms.
This chair from Halo Styles has closed arms. Of the two, this one is my favorite.
From Wisteria, this cane chair would be great to use in the room – and for $799.00 the price is low considering the quality. The finish is truly beautiful!
For above the mantel, Wisteria sells this little sunburst mirror for $179.00. At 19” it is very small, but effective.
Ballard Designs sunburst mirror is much larger at 46”, $279.00.
A hot new look in antique designing is books on the fireplace, but placed so that the pages are showing – as the Newsoms have done. Lately in antique stores, I’ve been seeing bound books sold, without their covers in order to achieve this look. Wisteria takes it one step further with these charming boxes – stacked two or three. $44 and $49.
Wow! Ballard Designs has this ottoman for $445, in a sage check fabric too! I’m not sure it wouldn’t be as cheap to have an oval ottoman custom made – and get that extra double ruffle detailing that is missing here. But if you don’t have access to an upholsterer, this is a great alternative!
Finishing out the room, is a small sofa, two antique Swedish chairs and a few tables. Wisteria makes the sofa easy for you to copy.
From Wisteria, this sofa is an almost exact copy of the one in their own home! It comes in a host of different colors, but all in a plain pattern. I don’t know if they accept a COM (customers own material), but it’s worth asking. At $2,399.00 it’s not inexpensive, but the detailing – all the tufting and ruffles and down does not come cheap. Very charming!
Or, from Ballard Designs for just $1,087.00 – you can get this settee, with casters, and the sage green check! What a steal!!!!!!
Again, Wisteria copies their own “coffee” table almost exactly. For $699.00. Great price for the value.
For the skirted table, Ballard Designs comes through with a plain linen fabric at $287.00. Again, it might be just as cheap to do it yourself – especially to get the double ruffle effect of the Newsom’s own table.
Wisteria sells these Gustavian chairs for $289.00 You could use these here, or in the dining room or kitchen. I love this chair – it’s so authentic looking and the finish is wonderful. Love the checked fabric too.
Halo Styles has a chair that looks more like the Newsoms chairs, and at a great price.
For the end table, though not round, this Swedish painted table from Wisteria is just beautiful. $549.00. Halo Styles has more tables similar to this, but not quite as pretty. Again – a wonderful, wonderful Swedish finish.
The rug – how would you duplicate the dhurris that are without color, pattern – the subtlety of it? Ikea sells these flat, wool rugs – in different colors and sizes.
This rug from Ikea looks pink here, but it’s actually an off white. This might be a great substitute for the more expensive dhurris seen in the Newsom house. Or there is always seagrass which is wonderful to use in a Swedish style room – with it’s white walls.
In this part of the room– two Swedish barrel chairs flank a console. Wisteria has provided us with both! Thanks Andrew!
This barrel chair is a great copy. These chairs are so very expensive when antique – so at $799.00 – you can get the look with out having to put out too much money. What a fabulous copy!!!!!
Wisteria’s new Swedish console – at $1,499.00 – not cheap, but what a beautiful piece – notice all the detailing. The finishes on the Wisteria’s pieces are amazing too.
Tara Shaw Maison has a barrel chair, too – another beautiful piece – and not much more than the Wisteria chair. This chair has a nailhead trim and notice the lion heads!!! Beautiful!
The antique leather screen is very difficult to duplicate. Hunt Ebay, Craig’s list, or Ruby Lane for a cheap version. Or at $499.90 - this screen from Horchow is a nice alternative. Not the same as a leather screen – but passable. If someone has a source for good screens, let me know. One thing you could do is buy handpainted wallpaper and frame it.
$189 from Home Decorators. You could antique this screen for a nice effect.
Or buy some old shutters! These shutters are so pretty and would look great in a Swedish room. You could always buy untreated new ones and leave them outside.
Lowe’s has a tutorial on how to make a screen. This might be a good alternative.
To duplicate the statuary – go to a garden shop and get a concrete piece, rather than a cheap resin copy from a store like Z Gallerie.
And for the stool under the console, GJ Styles, or Halo Styles, has this darling foot stool.
For $229, a great price, Wisteria has this Swedish stool in oak.
From Wisteria, this authentic copy of a 18th century trumeau, at $799 would look great over the console.
The dining room at the Newsom’s house – this would be tricky to copy for one reason – the table. I had trouble sourcing this, but I did come up with a few ideas.
First the clock. Halo Styles has several different Mora clocks in several finishes. Here in blue is one – I love these Mora clocks - the shapes are so feminine. There is a wonderful fairy-tale quality to them, like Cinderella at the ball!
And another style! I just adore these clocks – anywhere - in any styled home. I have one myself on a stair landing – it makes me smile each time I see it!!! How can you not smile?
This chair from Halo Styles or GJ Styles.com is a close match to the Newsom chairs. Any Swedish chair would do here.
The major problem to copy in this room is the dining table. I have a client right now who wants a table exactly like the Newsoms and I can’t find one at any price! So, to find one on a budget is a real hard one to accomplish. BUT, Wisteria does have this metal table which is a nice alternative at $999.00 – a folding medal version. Not bad!
If you love the scroll – how about this console from Wisteria? At $149 – buy two – and add a painted wood top! I think that is a genius idea!!! Haha.
Or, have a skirted table made – like this one that Pam Pierce created - (love her double ruffle effect!). Then, use one or two of the scrolled consoles to get the effect! I think that may be my favorite solution. Use any of the Swedish chairs shown with it.
The biggest bargain of the room is this chandelier, found on Amazon, Yes! Amazon! The Regency style mimics the one at the Newsoms, but much less expensive. Get it here for $862.00!!!! Antique versions of this chandelier start at $5,000 and up.
This popular picture on the blogosphere was taken from a Houston house photographed by House Beautiful. I wrote about it extensively here. It’s not from the Newsom’s house, but I thought it looked like it could be! How could you reinterpret this small sitting room for your own house – on a budget? The homeowner actually created this wallpaper copied from an original Gustavian home. She bought black and white botanical prints, copied them on a printer, and then had them hand painted!! BUT – you could find a calendar with images similar to these, copy them on a printer, then paste them on the wall. I know it sounds very labor intensive and maybe it is – but how gorgeous is this?????? Once the prints are on the wall – you could put a wash over them to antique them. It would be worth a try.
Halo Styles has an array of reproduction Swedish sofas. These are two of my favorite designs. Again, the real thing is so expensive and these are great copies – the detailing is so exact. These sofas make good accent pieces in any design really, not just Swedish – in bedrooms at the end of a bed or in a sitting arrangement, in a living room, or an entry, or in a dining room instead of chairs on one side of the table! Both would need a soft cushion and loose pillows – and they both could be upholstered in a checked fabric – a traditional Swedish look.
Notice this adorable set of child sized Swedish furniture from Wisteria! The sofa is $169.00 and $249 for the two chairs. This would be so adorable in a playroom OR if you did a Swedish styled home, one chair or the sofa would be a cute accent in a family room.
Thanks to Wisteria, Halo Styles and Tara Shaw Maison – today you can purchase Swedish furniture and not spend a fortune. Wisteria and Halo Styles have really invested in the current Swedish trend and that makes it great for you and me. Even if you don’t want to go all out Swedish, these painted pieces are beautiful on their own and would make great accents mixed in with other design styles such as French, Belgian, and even contemporary!