St. Louis Post-Dispatch from St. Louis, Missouri on October 31, 2002 · Page 101
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October 31, 2002

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St. Louis Post-Dispatch from St. Louis, Missouri · Page 101

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St. Louis, Missouri
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Thursday, October 31, 2002
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ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH STYLE WEST THURSDAY, OCTOBER 31, 2002 www.STLtoday.com SW3 i-y.u his mi S I '.V it v ; : IT ! 3 r w- .7 '3 :i"'-':ti rftrTC? 1 X ' 1, c 1 - --- sir"", J - y ' v - t l .v 1- y . 1 - AFTER: The addition of tables, lamps, artwork, accessories and window coverings gives the room a completely different look and feel. PHOTOS BY KERRY SHERCK THE STAMFORD (CONN.) ADVOCATE BEFORE: A physician and her husband summoned Margi Vorder Bruegge and George Snead to decorate their furnished but very bare 17-by-23-foot living room. Finishing touches are their specialty Decorators mix your furnishings with a few new items for a great look ... f ; ... : - ij r ' " ByNadiaLerner ""The Stamford (Conn.) Advocate WfIIEN GAYLE KING lit 1 (ec"e:' t0 add finishing M W touches to her home in Greenwich, Conn., she realized those touches would probably involve a hand other than her own. "I had a house that had pretty things, but it just did not come together," says King, a close friend of Oprah Winfrey and editor-at-large of Oprah "Ididntwantittobethe formal living room that I always had," says Cronin. Because the space was larger than that of her previous living room, they supplemented her furnishings with tables, chairs, an armoire, a chest of drawers and lamps from Snead's warehouse. A console table was added to the foyer, a rug removed from the living room and placed under the dining room table, and some pictures added to the wall. "I walked in through the door colors?' I was surprised how this was going to work. They said not to worry." On their next visit, while King wasn't home, Vorder Bruegge and Snead plied their magic. "I went to work that day, came back, they had all the lights on, and it looked very pretty," says King of her living room transformation. Working with colors compatible with her salmon and celadon green color scheme, the couple added tables, lamps, artwork and lots of pillows. come from a warehouse owned by Snead. The 10,000-square-foot facility includes a wide variety of traditional and reproduction furniture, lamps, fabrics, paintings, prints, posters and all manner of accessories from cachepots to topiaries. Snead shops the International Home Furnishings Market in North Carolina. Once Vorder Bruegge and Snead determine what's needed for the makeover, they select warehouse pieces appropriate for the client's ( if"! Magazine. "I thought I would get around to it, but it never came." King said she would check out furniture stores, "walking aimlessly around, "We see what their taste is, try to work with what they have and then bring in things that complement what they have." Margi Vorder Bruegge, interior decorator "Who would think that a pillow would make such a difference," says King, who admits she was never a "pillow person," and, in truth, previously found them "annoying." She was that night, and it was just mind-boggling," she says. "They completely transformed the space. I loved everything. I had a couple of my friends come in before and then after, and they were speechless." The cost of services varies, based on the amount of furniture ordered and time involved. "We will work "I walked in through the door that night, and it was just mind-boggling. They completely transformed the space. I loved everything. I had a couple of my friends come in before and then after, and they were speechless." Catherine Cronin of Greenwich, Conn., who sought decorating help home. With makeovers, usually people are 75 percent complete with furnishing their home, says Vorder Bruegge. "They want us to come in and pull the rest together. Whether we need some interesting chairs to go with a game table or a k i x us.. I y i 7 n hoping something would jump out" at her. No such luck. She realized she was spinning her wheels. Then a neighbor tipped her off to Fairfield County, Conn., decorators Margi Vorder Bruegge and George Snead. The styte-savvy pair create room makeovers in a day by integrating new furniture, accessories and artwork with existing pieces. Vorder Bruegge and Snead stopped by the next morning and talked to King about her needs, likes and dislikes. "They weren't even taking . notes," King recalls. "I said, ' 'Shouldn't you guys be writing down measurements, spaces, equally impressed with the furniture placement. "They are really masterful at that," she notes. "My teenage son, who really doesn't care about furniture placement or pillows, thought it looked cool. That's about the highest compliment you can get." King was so pleased with the job, she told Winfrey about it, suggesting she invite the decorators on her TV show. Vorder Bruegge and Snead appeared last February, along with a couple of before and after shots of King's living room. They'll also be featured in the December issue of The Oprah Magazine. Makeovers in a day have been If 4 within budgets," says Vorder Bruegge, observing that recent jobs ranged from $7,000 to $40,000. This includes the initial consultation at the client s home, time required to select furniture at the warehouse, furnishings purchased and the makeover, including furniture placement and picture hanging. fabric or wood, we like to mix things in. We see what their taste is, try to work with what they have and then bring in things that complement what they have." Greenwich resident Catherine Cronin, who recently moved into a late '60s house, called the decorators in to convert her living room into a multipurpose great room suitable for entertaining, watching TV and relaxing. Vorder Bruegge (center) and Snead (right) make over the room, with help from Vaagn Petrosian. a Vorder Bruegge and Snead projects, the collaborative specialty since the couple teamed approach serves them well on up in 1995. While both cater to these fast-moving assignments, their own clientele for individual Furnishings for the projects Bonsai enthusiasts continue a 2,000-year-old tradition By Georgia Tasker The Miami Herald MIAMI HIS IS THE house of two bonsai artists: A painting of a windswept As an adult, he started growing roses and orchids, but became fascinated with bonsai when he visited the Miami Tropical Bonsai nursery in Goulds a few years ago. "I was completely overwhelmed," he said. Today, Brooks, a computer specialist who is also a graphic artist and acrylics painter, says sculpting trees "combines the best of both worlds" of art and horticulture. "Bonsai is really more art than plants," he said. "The art is so crucial." Soares goes to El Dorado Bonsai School in Placerville, Calif., several times a year to study with a bonsai master. He hopes to open a bonsai nursery and teach others. "I remember Soares' very first class," Godoy says. "He called and said, 'My arms are hurting; I had to rewire a tree three times.' " Brooks, the head of the Bonsai Society of Miami, remembers first seeing photographs of bonsai trees when he was 4 or 5 years old and living in the Florida Keys. ' l-.iJ The two became so impassioned with their hobby that their main criterion when buying a house four years ago was a big, empty back yard. . Where else would they put their growing collection of trees? "The house didn't matter," Godoy said. "We wanted a back yard with nothing in it so we could set up our trees." Today, tables on concrete block pedestals hold buttonwoods, pines, azaleas, ficus and hundreds of other trees learning to become small. In total, they have 550 bonsai plants they care for. "I used to dance and go to the theater," says Godoy. "This is so much fun, I can't do anything else." The art of growing trees in pots began more than 2,000 years ago in China. The Chinese used stones in the . shape of sacred mountains for meditation. Gradually, the stones grew smaller, and came to be seen as possessing spiritual power. With the influence of Buddhists from India, who carried medicinal plants in containers, the rocks and plants in small containers merged to form penjing, or landscapes of small plants, according to Robert Baran with the Phoenix Bonsai Society, which has an extensive Web site www.phoenixbonsai.com on the subject. Buddhist monks took the art form to Japan in the 12th century. There, it was refined, and the aesthetic of "less is more" reduced the Chinese landscape to a single tree. QO your shoes reallyfit? .l ' v. , . lU- S. ' juniper hangs near the dining-room table. In the back room, a small dog-grooming stool is topped with a buttonwood tree in a low, shallow pot. On another table, pruning tools are laid out like scalpels of a surgeon. Bonsai books fill a comer bookcase, including one from the 17th century found in London. Bonsai the Asian art of growing miniature trees in containers is more than a hobby; it often becomes a lifestyle. The mystique of the Orient is probably half of the attraction, says Randy Brooks, president of the Bonsai Society of Miami. 'It takes control of your life to some degree. The plants demand it, because they require a lot of attention. Even if you aren't very ordered and responsible in your life, you get very ordered and responsible in this and it becomes almost meditative." Consider the path that led Jarbas Godoy, Brazilian-born owner of the Dog From Ipanema, a Coral Gables, Fla., dog-grooming shop, to the centuries-old horticultural art: Al Soares, another Brazilian, became fascinated with bonsai while living in that country. When he moved to South Florida 10 years ago and began working for Godoy, Soares cultivated Godoy's curiosity in the ancient art. Y i.f Ladies fashionable, European influenced footwear in sizes 4 to 12, in a great selection of widths from super-slim to wide. Let our knowledgeable staff help you find the style you want and the fit you need. Unique handbags and accessories also available. i PHOTOS BY CHRIS VIOLA MIAMI HERALD Jarbas Godoy, with one of the bonsai trees in his back yard in Miami. Saint Louis Gallcria Upper Level near Dillards 314.863.1986 www.marmishoes.corn i

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