From the Publisher. Trendsetter, fashion icon, and wife of an internationally renowned novelist, the interior designer Syrie Maugham (1879–1955) created an ultra-chic world that was as unique as it was influential. Her ethereal all-white rooms of the 1920s and 30s were echoed in high-style interiors around the world and translated into sets for movies and theatrical productions. Much of the look we associate with the Hollywood glamour of the time owes its simple elegance to Maugham’s pared-down aesthetic. Syrie Maugham celebrates the work of this legendary British designer in the first comprehensive study of her dramatic life and meteoric career.
Author Pauline C. Metcalf takes readers on a lively transatlantic voyage through Maugham's world, from the drawing rooms she decorated in London to the houses, villas, and apartments commissioned by clients in the United States and on the Continent. With over 250 photographs and illustrations, Syrie Maugham also profiles the designer's international clientele, a rarified group that included British royals, European aristocrats, American socialites, and Broadway stars. In Maugham's blend of traditional refinement and the Style Moderne, with occasional Surrealist flourish—console tables floating on dolphin bases, fringed sleigh beds, sheepskin rugs, and miles of mirrored screens—this cosmopolitan beau monde discovered a perfect expression of café-society chic.