” A gorgeous guide to stylish living that will inspire and delight “

– The Crown Publishing Group –

It’s 14:04. Your phone rings and vibrates. You have received a new email. But you don’t have to guess who sent it. Because you know, unquestionably, whose it is.

If, like A-Gent of Style, you are addicted to blogs, you will know by now at exactly what time your daily subscriptions arrive in your inbox and how much they punctuate your day. In this particularly case, you will be accustomed to receiving one special email after your lunch break (if you live in the UK of course), perhaps when you have returned to your desk. That 14:04 email is of course from:
The Peak of Chic.

A-Gent of Style discovered The Peak of Chic in 2009 and has been a huge admirer and follower ever since. To say it has had a huge influence on
A-Gent of Style would be only fair. Amongst the plethora of blogs circulating online, Jennifer Boles, its founder and editor since its creation in 2006, has found a niche and a voice of her own in the design blogosphere thanks to her unique approach to her subject matter. She specialises in historical interior design from the 20th century (mostly from 1970) to the present and unearths, from her wide collection of past publications, illustrations, photographs, anecdotes and trends about some of the greatest decorators, artists, taste makers or characters that she shares with her loyal readership in her daily posts.

As a historian, she has a gathered great wealth of knowledge about yesteryear decoration and design that never go out of style (well, almost). Thanks to her passion and enthusiasm, The Peak of Chic has become a great source for design aesthetics and a treasure trove for interiors, people, entertaining, fabrics, wallpapers, books, art and jewellery. Her great writing skills and eye for studying photographs and curating the decorative arts mean that The Peak of Chic is consistently elegant, educational and fascinating. It certainly never fails to inspire and be an eye opener to A-Gent of Style.

Considering her worthy success as a blogger but also as a contributing editor to House Beautiful, it is no surprise that today, Jennifer celebrates the publication of her much-anticipated new book, In with the Old, a charming encyclopedia with 100 entries organised from A to Z that celebrates classic decorating details. With a foreword by Alexa Hampton (daughter of celebrated designer and illustrator Mark Hampton and head of the family business) and charming illustrations and photographs, this guide ranging from follies and banquettes to butler’s trays and treillage offers history, facts, tips, titbits and anecdotes with Boles’s idiosyncratic style and infectious passion-obsession for decorating history.

So whether you are a devoted Peak of Chic-ist, an art de vivre enthusiast or even a design student (KLC and Inchbald readers, treat yourselves), the brilliantly named In with the Old is definitely for you and your coffee table.

A-Gent of Style wishes Jennifer every success with In with the Old which he is convinced will become a must-have reference book, and he is eagerly awaiting to receive his copy (available in the UK from November 7; order here or
from The Bookshop at the Design Centre Chelsea Harbour +44 (0) 20 7351 6854).

Jennifer told A-Gent of Style she is hoping to come to London some time soon so stay tuned if you want to meet the author in person and have your own
 In with the Old book signed!

– All photos by The Peak of Chic –



If you haven’t seen yet Cate Blanchett’s stellar performance in Woody Allen’s new movie Blue Jasmine, here’s a aperçu of an impressive gamut of facets the antipodean actress can achieve in 1min01 in Giorgio Armani’s ravishing ‘film’ for his new perfume Si. Que bella!


Have a lovely weekend.


“One hundred years after my death, I will rest, my fortune made.”
– Jean Cocteau –

Fame and recognition did not take as long as that. Fifty years after Jean Cocteau’s death, Roche Bobois, the high-end contemporary French furniture company, has the privilege to have been entrusted by the Jean Cocteau Committee – chaired by Pierre Bergé, who holds the exclusive moral rights to Jean Cocteau’s work, one of his best friends – with the responsibility of creating a new collection around a man celebrated as one of the greatest French artists of his time.

The meticulously crafted range includes cushions, bed linen, throws, lampshades and upholstery, and also rugs, thereby adding an original dimension to the works. The result is a range of fine quality accessories whose motifs and patterns blend art with decoration.

Pierre Berge

Pierre Berge

Jean Cocteau (1889-1963) was a multi-disciplinary protean artist: he was a poet, a novelist, a designer, a painter, a playwright, a choreographer, a scenographer, a film director, a scriptwriter, an actor, a publisher, a journalist and a radio personality who embraced creativity in all its forms and embarked on a prolific career.

The ethereal genius was part of the French and international glitterati circles and counted as some of his close friends Pablo Picasso, Jean Marais (his long-time partner),
Henri Bernstein, Yul Brynner, Marlene Dietrich, Coco Chanel, Erik Satie, Igor Stravinsky, Sergei Diaghilev, Édith Piaf, Amedeo Modigliani, Maurice Ravel, Madeleine Castaing and Jeanne Moreau.
In 1955 Cocteau was made a Member of the Académie française and Commander of the Legion d’Honneur, the highest accolades bestowed by the French government.

Cocteau is best remembered for his plays and movies La Belle et la Bête
(Beauty and the Beast
), Les Parents Terribles (The Storm Within), Orphée
(Orpheus) and Le Testament d’Orphée (The Testament of Orpheus) but also his ceramics which circulate today in antiques fairs (last spotted by A-Gent of Style this year at Lapada).

This collection shows several of Cocteau’s facets. With inimitable elegance,
Jean Cocteau created a body of work that is considered today to be of great importance. The Roche Bobois collection reminds us of the strength and contemporaneity of his work. Thanks to these magnificent decorative objects, Jean Cocteau’s epitaph “I stay with you” is truer than ever.

The various objects demonstrate the extraordinarily expressive range of one of France’s most distinctive artists of the 20th century and Roche Bobois has given these works a new lease of life and brought Jean Cocteau once again to the attention of the world.

When Jean Cocteau worked on a fresco or ceramic, he spoke of tattooing walls or clay. Roche Bobois has approached the creative development of this new collection, composed mainly of textile accessories, in similar spirit. Using print, embroidery and a mix of techniques, the makers of this new collection have managed to capture the distinctive spontaneity of Cocteau’s original drawings and manuscripts.
 The designs represent a direct continuation of the work of an artist who had explored the area of decoration himself, as seen in his ceramics and the frescoes of Villa Santo Sospir аt Saint Jean Cap Ferrat.

“I’m neither designer nor painter; my designs are writings untangled then re-tangled differently.” Jean Cocteau.

Referencing these pictorial and poetic designs within textiles seems like a natural progression. The extent of the collection’s range allows for a harmonious scale and Cocteau’s sketches and drawings lend themselves perfectly to the patterns that adorn these expertly woven rugs and embroidered cushions. A charming assortment of faces in silhouette, colours and words distil the essence of the poet’s artistic and convivial spirit.


A hint is even made to the artist’s indiscretions via the motifs on the bed linen inspired by his intimate sketches of people sleeping.

“… Picasso told me that once I’d put clay in a kiln, I’d be lost to it forever. The thing is, I’ve always had a taste for losing myself with delight.”

Executed between 1957 and 1963 by the Madeline-Jolly pottery workshop in Ville Franche-sur-Mer, Cocteau’s ceramics develop themes dear to him. Cocteau described their ornamentation as a form of tattoo and developed novel techniques, such as using an oxide pencil, for applying his markings.

Roche Bobois turned to one of the few potters capable of faithfully reproducing the pieces of the original edition. One of them sourced the same colours of clay, used precisely the same quantities of engobe and enamel and employed the same traditional methods of glazing and firing. The one difference is that he applied some details prior to firing, rather than after, for the purposes of preservation. The reissue of these ceramics are presented as a limited and numbered series, as befits a collection that can truly be described as ‘artworks.


And last but not least, A-Gent of Style’s favourite items: the lacquer trays, square with «Face and profile» or rounded with ‘Wing’.
The square, taupe one for A-Gent please.


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