I do not think that this subject needs a lot of explanation. We all know the concept of a ‘guilty pleasure’ and I may presume that we all have them.
Guilty pleasures exist in the world of interior design too: they are those furnishing items you absolutely adore, but are a little embarrassed about because others might discover your ‘bad taste’.
“We all need a splash of bad taste – it’s hearty, it’s healthy, it’s physical,” said Diana Vreeland (legendary former editor for Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar). To celebrate her words, in this series I am sharing some of my guilty pleasures in decorating and I can only hope your judgement won’t be too harsh.
First up: vintage palm tree lamps. Lamps in the form of a palm tree. Gold-plated, generously foliaged and often placed on a shiny lacquered base. Some of them reaching a height of over 2 meters.
Exuberant. Exotic. Very maximalist.
Most of them were produced in between the fifties and the seventies by Paris-based company Maison Jansen, founded in 1880 by Dutch-born Jean-Henri Jansen. It was the first real global design house, praised all over the world for producing furnishings that combine European tradition, historical art movements and exotic influences. Their designs, not the least of which these opulent palm tree lamps, are now very sought-after vintage items.
Take a look at the interior images below and try picturing them without palm lamps. They would surely be curated, stylish rooms, but you will probably conclude that it is the palms that truly make them stand out, with their aura of free-spiritedness and their hint of Hollywood glamour!