29 February 2008

Barbara Barry. Unexpected.

Allow me to start by saying I am quite fond of the work of Los Angeles based interior designer, Barbara Barry. In addition to creating beautiful commercial and residential interiors, Barbara is also creating an empire. Very much the way Martha Stewart's name has become synonymous with elegance, living well and "good things", Barbara Barry is creating product lines for some of the most prestigious manufacturers.

It is now possible to buy Barbara Barry furniture from Baker, Bloomingdales and Henredon. At Henredon her collection is called "Barbara Barry Realized". She also designs crystal for Baccarat, china for Wedgewood and Haviland, rugs for Tufenkian and has her own decorative accessories, art, and bedding. Yesterday, I ran into Barbara's bed linens collection in the latest Neiman Marcus catalog. They are simple, understated and feature soft hues and very relaxing colors. As is common with many of Barbara's designs, they impart a very special Hollywood glamor. What I have surprisingly discovered joining the great Barbara Barry brand are two collections that I will classify as "Barbara Barry. Unexpected."

The first unexpected delight is Barbara Barry's "Orange Grove" tea blend and the second flicker of magic is her array of fragrance for the home. Similar to Ralph Lauren, Barbara Barry has created the total lifestyle. A simple example is the possibility of sitting in a Barbara Barry "Bracelet" chair, (for Henredon), sipping tea from a Wedgewood china tea cup while breathing in the aroma of a Barbara Barry "Living room" votive candle. I wonder what will be next?

I do love tea. Here is what Barbara Barry has to say about her signature blend, "Orange Grove":

"My day begins with tea. The small ritual of boiling the water, selecting the tea and heating the cup into which I pour it, creates a way for me to center myself as I prepare to meet the day. Sitting with a cup of tea soothes me in the middle of a hectic day and gives me the chance to gather my thoughts. Much later, a cup of tea, prepared artfully, allows me quiet moments of reflection as I relax and end my day. The joy of tea is the joy of self expression, the joy found in the comfort of small daily rituals that give structure to my day and the joy of bringing friends together to celebrate the shared moments of our lives."

Barbara Barry's inspiration for Orange Grove:

“I live in the hills of Hollywood, California and my backyard is full of fragrant orange trees and night blooming jasmine. Each time I smell them their scent evokes powerful and wonderful memories of my childhood, growing up in California. After traveling around the world, coming home to these healing and evocative smells is always a tonic to me. I looked to T to create a blend so that I could take that bit of home with me wherever I go. Their remarkable efforts are found in Orange Grove. Today it doesn’t matter whether I’m in a plane at 30,000 feet or in a new country half way around the world, when I brew that cup of tea, close my eyes, and inhale the scent of fresh orange blossoms I’m home again."

Orange Grove is a blend of Madagascar orange peel, Tahitian Vanilla blended to a perfect balance with the highest quality Oolong tea that gives it a subtle woody finish reminding you that this is a product of the earth.

LEAF : Twisted large full leaf
AROMA: Sweet with vanilla & citrus
PALATE: Sweet and earthy


Home fragrance:

Barbara Barry tea cup featuring her "Bracelet Chair" for Henredon furniture

Barbara Barry "Living room" home fragrance spray. Each room has it's own individual fragrance

Barbara Barry "Dining room" votive candles. Monogrammed with the double "B"

Barbara Barry "Bedroom" votive candle

Packaging of Barbara Barry "Dining room" votive candles

Images of Barbara Barry "Realized" for Henredon chairs grace Wedgewood glasses and dessert plates