Thursday, September 8, 2011

Birds of a Feather Part II of III (The Magenta Wars)

I believe in PINK.
                                    Audrey Hepburn

Join me as I tell you a story, a story of how I fell in love with ALL the pinks. . .

This was exactly the pink in the first room that Susan and I shared.

My sister Susan and I are only 14 months apart.  When we were really little we lived on a gravel road between Marks and Lambert, Mississippi, on our cotton farm on the Coldwater River.  No one at all lived near us, so we had only each other for playmates. 

Marilyn (Me) and Susan, my original Bird of a Feather   ca 1964

We created lots of things to do both inside and outside, and ultimately found ourselves spending a lot of time with our coloring books and the highly prized box of 64 Crayola crayons.  I promise, I used to dream and plot and plan on how to get my Daddy, who was and still is the sweet pushover, or Nanny my grandmother to get us a brand new, every color sharp box at the Lambert Drugstore. 


Susan and I would sit down with our coloring books and the highly coveted box of 64 and carefully open it along the perforation.   The first thing Susan always exclaimed was,  " I call the magenta!"

At first I would argue with her, because it was a beauty!   I was THE SWEETEST big sister, although I am sure she would argue with this, so I usually gave in and just let her have that magenta. 

But my secret was that I knew if I let her win the coveted magenta, that I actually won all the other pinks!   Ah,  I was just a bit older and wiser, and a bit sneakier, I will admit.

And thus began my love affair with ALL the pinks.

I actually spent long hours simply fondling and studying ALL my pinks.


So many, many Pinks . . .

. . . And lots of rooms in which to use them!

Pale Pink

(Actually called Piggy Pink now, but I cannot bring myself to call it that)

This living room is done in a pale pink, but is a bit icy.  I generally avoid icy colors, but I like this with the all graphic neutrals and the pattern on the natural fiber rug.  Don't you love the  silhouette pillow fabric?


I am especially fond of this pale, slightly fleshy baby pink and the collection of sketches.  I just selected a very similar color for a client's living room in the Delta. 

Pale pink (Dunn Edwards Sheer Rosebud) in a more mod, casual and eclectic setting on the walls of Santa Monica, California's Hideaway restaurant at the Oceana Hotel. 

I love all the natural elements in this bookcase at the hotel.  Note the little bird on the top shelf!

Mauvy Rose Pink


An Elegant AND Earthy AND chalky, mauvy rose pink foyer

Purplish Pink


A palette of soothing grays with lots of natural shell accents is livened with the shock of purplish pink poufs and flowers in George Stephonopolis' home. 



I love the rustic chalky floorboards, the 'fur' pillow, the fresh flowers,  the framed collection of eggs and the antique framed botanicals, again juxtaposing the rough and rustic with the more formal, and bringing the outdoor and natural inside, in Steven Gambrel's pink card room in Sag Harbor.

Watermelon Pink . . .


Candace Bushnell's 19th century Venetian hot watermelon pink chaise
is reminiscent of a gondola.  I love it and all the pink books in the shelves!

Hand Marblized Pink Birdwing Paper would be fantastic for book jackets in  a pink library and is one of our great Birds of a Feather Blog Launch Giveaways.

Lipstick Pink. . .

PINK is lipsensual.
                                      Terri Guillemets

Not one of my crayola colors, exactly, but one of my favorite pinks,  Lipstick Pink, as Interior Designer Mary Douglas Drysdale has dubbed it

"Lipstick Pink" Wallcovering, Mary Douglas Drysdale for Casart Coverings.  The onions (not eggs)  in the black modern art bowl are a wonderful earthy touch.

Definitely one of my birds of a feather, highly published and acclaimed for her way with color, Washington, D. C.  based interior designer
" is a real color to contend with. I think that it is the new red. It is fresh, optimistic, self confidant and just plain pretty!" 

Mary Douglas Drysdale

And last, but certainly not least



Ah,  Magenta for Fall AND My Sister Susan. Truce. We can share this one.

Bashful, Blush, Flesh, Flush, Rose, Coral, Salmon, Carnation,
Light Red, Hot Pink, Bubblegum, Flamingo, Lipstick, Fuchsia, Magenta,
Raspberry, Russet, Sepia . . .

What is your favorite pink and why?

 I love this original Watercolor  "Nest and Pink Eggs" by Art Enchanted Woods on c. 1889 Robert Burns Poetry on Etsy. 

Designed by Per Design Studio and soon available at our Etsy store, these decorative matchboxes  are made from a set of ca 1790 French black and white bird prints and are hand tinted, so we can custom produce them for you in any colors.   We are giving away five pink ones.

Stay tuned for Birds of a Feather Part III for more birds, more great pink design, and more Birds of a Feather Blog Launch Giveaways. Don't forget to subscribe to MS Design Maven and 'like' MS Design Maven and Per Design Studio on Facebook to be eligible to win one of the great prizes including a copy of Barry Dixon's new book Inspirations, two hand painted pink birds in nests, five boxes of hand tinted pink bird matches, and a hand marblized sheet of pink birdwing paper.

Photo Credits:  Crayola,  Design Sponge, House Beautiful, Veranda, Hotel Chic, Elle Decor via Irene Turner at Home, Elle Decor, Casart Coverings,  Mary Douglas Drysdale,  Marilyn Storey, antique bird cages -- 1st Dibs, other photos unknown sources



  1. Hello Marilyn: Although I am not into pink, I appreciate the variety of shades and color combinations and how pink interacts with other colors. I do love different shades of pink in flowers, especially peonies!


  2. I'm tickled pink over your post! What fun! I painted my daughter's bathroom pale pink 15 years ago (Devoe Ballet Pink) because I heard that it is a flattering color for the skin. I even put pink lightbulbs in her bathroom. All her friends loved to park in front of her mirror to get dolled up for dates. Now I'm partial to pink and chocolate brown (particularly when it's a chocolate cupcake with pink icing!). And for the record, I vote "yes" to men wearing pink sexy! Keep up the good work on your blog!

  3. Hi Marilyn,

    You know, I was never a "pink" person when I was a child or even as I grew to an adult (I always favorite any shade of blue, still do) BUT I am happy to say that the palest of pinks is becoming a color I j'adore.
    Funny how your color palette changes as you age.

    I think this is one of the sweetest posts...I was an older sister too!



  4. Hi, Marilyn!! I love Your blog !!! You did a great job!! Congratulations!! I posted Your blog on My blog. XO !!!

  5. Good grief Marlyn- what a wonderful post- I love the mix of hard goods and soft especially as mixed with nature- wonderful and thanks to Irena Stallard I have cracked the sign up issue- Yeah

  6. Marilyn, LOVE IT!! First opportunity to focus and read! Painted an entire condo "anemone" pink by someone and it went with everything and, if I do say so myself, made everyone look more alive...especially as it was in the northeast! Also, condo got 3 offers - painted PINK - the first weekend it was on the market! Can't wait to take more design trips with you! Stacie

  7. Hi Marilyn, Thank you so much for stopping by my blog! I read your description of yourself and your design asthetic sounds so similar to mine. I have signed up - I think I'm really going to enjoy your blog. :) I loved seeing your kitchen too on Joni's blog. I have a post ready to go for tomorrow about decorating with bottles and I added a picture of your kitchen - hope that's ok. (with credit of course) Looking forward to your posts!

  8. Marilyn, You are off and running. This is a fabulous post. Lovely images. I've had a crazy week getting ready for a photo shoot of a clients home for At Home in Arkansas, so I've not had much time for blogging. Was your kitchen in a recent post of Joni's? Have a great week. Mona

  9. pink really suits you Marilyn...
    it's always been a favorite of mine..
    and such lovely pics..I'm drooling..

  10. I am impressed. I don't think Ive met anyone who knows as much about this subject as you do. You are truly well informed and very intelligent. You wrote something that people could understand and made the subject intriguing for everyone. Really, great blog you have got here. quaker parrot for sale


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