Did you not go to Vines & Vignettes yesterday? What you missed! But read to the end of this post because there is chance for redemption.
One of Black Rock’s more mysterious estates, a compound surrounded by high walls and hedges, was finally open to the public and A-list tradespeople such as Beau Maas Antiques and Happy Tails at Ash Creek set up really wonderful little booths to show their wares.
Thomas Del Spina had his finely detailed historical reproduction frames in the garden (which made me nervous when I heard a thunderclap) and Jeffrey Gall, who used to have the sorely missed Olivia’s Attic on Fairfield Avenue, was set up with precious antiques under some large trees. And the rains never came! An herb garden was designed by Michel Nischan, owner of the acclaimed Dressing Room restaurant in Westport and president of the Wholesome Wave Foundation, known for supporting production and access to healthy, fresh and affordable locally grown food.
Nest of Southport was on a patio off the main house, which used to be the cottage of a long-gone Victorian hotel nearby. Interior designer Carol Brewer, who had the historic house as her project, showed before-and-after shots of the interior, including the wine cellar, winner of an Architectural Digest award. I don’t know if she knew that when previous owner Fred Frassinelli had the house, he had commissioned Mario Buatta and Mark Hampton to outfit the interiors. Ms. Brewer brightened a new kitchen with a beautiful, ornate glassed-in room off to its side.
A hourly lecture series under Abbey Rental tents brought experts from Bartlett Trees, Austin Ganim Landscape Designs, Ganim’s Florists, Oliver Nurseries and Erin Buckley from Measure for Measure/The Center for Green Building. Signs and brochures promoting the event had such beautiful photography, and the photographer herself, Karyn Leito, had a table of sumptuous floral portraits. Marilyn Thorkilson, who lives in the neighborhood, runs a business called Enduring which supplies elegant and realistic silk flower arrangements.
Most tempting to me was the wine tasting from Amity Wines in New Haven. I scored a richly complex Malbec blend. Or rather six of them.
Today I’m exhausted and suffering from post-fabulousness depression. The social event of the season has come and gone. Summer surely is downhill from here, before it’s really begun. Nothing can possibly measure up. I was a little depressed when I left, knowing that I would never again see this marvelous estate.
And then someone told me that the event is not a one-time thing! It will be back Oct. 8, 2011. Save the date. This is a shot at redemption for all you silly people who didn’t come.