Gray Antiques and Interiors

  • Author avatar
    Carol Vargo


We were thrilled to be invited by AERIN Home to preview their new Fall accessories line at Market Week.  We love and are inspired by the company's chic aesthetic under the amazing eye of founder Aerin Lauder Zinterhofer.  Her decorative accessories and lighting are remarkably beautiful as well as incredibly well made.  Each piece is so lovely to hold in your hand. We look forward to using them alongside our antique and vintage pieces to create the truly timeless yet fresh and modern rooms we love. 

New for Fall, this seriously chic velvet jewelry box with a display of vintage jewelry. 

The art of display. Blue ceramics on a gold etager and vintage Vogues in a rattan basket. 

Exquisite Austrian handmade flower sculptures from Aerin Lauder's personal collection alongside a new print for beauty bags for Fall and an AERIN lamp for Visual Comfort.

Stunning antique mirror in the main seating area with art work from her boys when they were little.  I did the same with my boys' artwork. So warm and genuine. Family is everything.

I am in love with this fabulous floor lamp for Visual Comfort and the ceramic pieces in gold and cream.  Supremely elegant.

My favorite moment is this vintage gold vitrine filled with vintage pieces from Estee Lauder as well as tabletop, beauty and accessories from AERIN over the years.  Adored her sunglasses with Oliver Peoples and chic evening clutches. Truly breathtaking.




Matisse and Diebenkorn at the BMA

I finally viewed the Matisse-Diebenkorn exhibit at the Baltimore Museum Of Art this weekend. Truly a thrill. Henri Matisse had a major influence on Richard Diebenkorn's work, beginning when Diebenkorn viewed his work as a young artist in the late 1940s and culminating with Diebenkorn's iconic Ocean Park series in the 1970s.  Seeing the work of the two juxtaposed was such an eye-opener and a great pleasure.  Diebenkorn's works are mesmerizing -- large, graphic, unique --but even more so when one sees how he was inspired by Matisse's groundbreaking colors and forms.  I especially loved the exhibit's display of Matisse catalogs and books that had been collected by Diebenkorn throughout the years.

The 90 plus works in the show are culled from museums and private collections around the country, with many of Matisse's works from the BMA's permanent collection established by Baltimore's Cone sisters, who began collecting his work in 1906.   Many of Diebenkorn's works are on loan from the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, where the show travels next after it closes at the BMA on January 29.  The show is absolutely worth a visit to Baltimore these last two weeks if you are on the East Coast (Amtrak makes it easy!).  For those of you on the West Coast this Spring, I highly recommend a visit to SFMOMA when the show runs March 11 through May 29. (Note: there is a strict no photography rule at the exhibit given there are so many works from private collections so the photos below are from other sources but represent my selection of favorites from the show.) 

Matisse in studio with portrait of Etta Cone, 1934.  Photo Matisse Archives.

Diebenkorn in his Berkley, CA studio, 1959.  Photo by Fred Lyon.

Matisse, "Quai Saint-Michel", 1916.

Diebenkorn, "Urbana #4", 1953.

Matisse, "Reclining Model with a Flowered Robe", 1924.

Diebenkorn, "Untitled (Woman Seated in a Chair)", 1963.  A favorite!

Matisse, "Yellow Pottery from Provence," 1906.

Diebenkorn, "Seated Figure with a Hat", 1967.

Matisse, "View of Notre Dame", 1914.

Diebenkorn, "Ocean Park #79", 1975.





Winter Garden

I find Winter gardens just as beautiful as when they are at their peak in Spring and Summer. For it is a well-maintained garden that has been lovingly put to bed for the winter that ensures the beauty of the next season.  Over the holidays I visited one of my favorite gardens at Stan Hywet, the 1920s Tudor Estate built by the Seiberling family, founders of Goodyear Tire and Rubber, in Akron, Ohio.  The grounds and the greenhouse were simple, elegant and fresh to my eyes after the hustle and bustle of the Holidays.  















New Year, New Plans


Happy New Year.  Gray Antiques and Interiors is embracing 2016 with enthusiasm.  Starting with our recently announced name change, we are focusing on bringing you the best mix of elegant and timeless antique and vintage pieces we can find.  We will continue to scour auctions and estate sales up and down the East Coast for these great finds and a buying trip to France is in the works. Also, Brimfield here we come. 

Another big and exciting change is the two story renovation underway at Somerset Road in Baltimore.  We will blog and post on Instagram so you can track the progress of this two story kitchen and master bath renovation of our existing 1924 center hall colonial.  The building is in high gear now, with planned completion in April, so follow up along as we source and select our decorative details.  From the breakfast room, to the seating area in front of a fireplace, to the mudroom, to the dressing room, walk in closets and the soaking tub, there will be plenty of action to watch and weigh in on!

We look forward to having you follow us in 2016!  Cheers to the New Year!







Books Make the Perfect Gifts

One can never have too many books.  Especially big beautiful design and art books.  I always give books as gifts at Christmas -- to my boys, to friends, my mother, hosts and hostesses -- that reflect their interests and tastes.  It is a thoughtful, enduring and relatively inexpensive personal gesture.  In sum, "The Perfect Gift."  Here are a few of our favorite books right now, all available to purchase.  Go to Shop for details and pricing:


The New Design Bible:


The Ultimate Icon of Style:



The Chicest Gardener:


A Master Class:


The Genius:













Special Gifts

Gift giving is an art.  As in the classic story by O. Henry, "The Gift of the Magi,"  presenting your husband, wife, lover, child, mother, father or special friend with a meaningful gift should entail a bit of thoughtfulness and, dare we say it, sacrifice.  Here are a few of our favorite special pieces for a special someone. All are available for purchase on our online shop.

Carved Wood Food Dogs, $495 a pair



French Tole Cache Pots, $135 a pair



Country Scene Oil Painting, $435



Blue and White Large Temple Jars, $750 a pair



Christofle Etched Crystal Vase, $125









Thoughtful and Elegant Holiday Gifts

The Holidays are upon us and gift giving is on our minds.  At MarigoldGray we love to give gifts even more than receiving them.  Vintage and antique one of a kind pieces that are unique to the recipients are always preferable and far more meaningful to give.  Here are a few suggestions, all under $150, currently available to purchase on our online shop.

For the Entertainer

French Hand Painted Glasses, Set of 12. These glasses are so beautiful for a luncheon or holding votives on a candlelit outdoor table.


For the Gardener

How thrilling to receive a first edition of CZ Guest's "First Garden," with a forward by Truman Capote and drawings by Cecil Beaton.



For the Blue and White Lover

Vintage Mottahedeh "Canton" Trumpet Vase. A beautiful vase, especially when filled with fresh flowers.



For the Classicist

Classical female head statuette. So pretty on a desk or dressing table.


For the Gentleman's Library

Wooden Samurai Figures.  Handsome additions to a book shelf or desk.



For the Fashion Obsessed

Vintage edition of "Carolina Herrera" by Alexandra Kotur because we have so much to learn from this style icon.


 For the Decorator

Vintage edition of  the classic "Tuscany Interiors," for endless inspiration.















When we launched MarigoldGray in January our vision was to bring the unique and high quality antique and vintage pieces that we love to a large audience and assist people in integrating these pieces into their homes. Since January, through a lot of hard work, networking one-on-one, and via social media, we have made some wonderful connections, benefited from lots of sage advice, and found many kindred spirits (thank you Instagram!)

Today we are thrilled that we are taking another great step in our journey by being selected to become a member business in The Scout Guide Baltimore and Annapolis. The Scout Guide is a national network that highlights and cross promotes independent businesses online and in print, with publications in over 30 cities from San Francisco to Greenwich. MarigoldGray will appear in the 2016,Volume II, BaltimoreAnnapolis print edition and, in the meantime, we will be highlighted in their ongoing social media marketing.

To kick off the partnership, we are excited to announce that we are taking over their Instagram account @tsgbaltimoreannapolis this weekend as we visit Hudson, New York for the auction of property of style icons CZ and Winston Guest from their Templeton estate recently sold by their daughter Cornelia Guest. Follow us as we road trip to the beautiful Hudson Valley to preview the auction Friday and bid on pieces Saturday. We look forward to this great event this weekend and this exciting new partnership with TSGBaltimoreAnnapolis.


 November is here and the first flourishes of Fall are now in full bloom, so to speak.  While it is tempting to jump straight to Christmas, I will spend the weeks leading up to the ultimate Fall holiday -- Thanksgiving -- continuing to revel in Fall.  This month is a busy one for MarigoldGray-- next week we will attend a book signing for Michael S. Smith's new book at John Rosselli"s New York show room AND we will visit Hudson, New York for the auction of property from CZ Guest's Templeton estate at Stair Galleries.  Almost too much to be thankful for this month!  Alas, while I Iove prepping for and hosting Thanksgiving Dinner at Somerset Road,  this year we will likely be at a restaurant as our kitchen is under construction.   On the bright side, no dishes to wash!  There will be much to write about this month so please continue to follow us on the blog and on Instagram as well as shopping our great finds.

Fall Pop Up Shop at Littlebirdies Boutique

We are thrilled to be holding a Pop Up Shop this week in Georgetown with our fantastic hosts, Littlebirdies Boutique, owned by the lovely Shanlee Johnson.  It is a dream of ours to have a little shop, of course.  But running a shop is a huge commitment with plenty of risk.  We are in awe of the men and women like Shanlee who work 24 to 7 to do what they love and make it a successful and thriving business.  Until we can get there, we are so fortunate to have Shanlee sharing her beautiful children's wear shop with us.  We will have our best selection of mirrors, lighting, art, decorative accessories and vintage books on design, fashion, and gardening.  We also will have a handful of great new pieces just arriving this week from auction in New York.  Trust us, you will not want to miss these unique finds, whether for your own home or as the perfect one-of-a-kind gift.  And of course, at the same time you will find Littlebirdies' beautiful clothing and gifts for your children or grandchildren and great monogrammed gifts from their partner, Whytehouse Monograms.  We look forward to seeing you Sunday.