An Eye for Beauty: Rooms That Speak to the Senses

Kirk Reed Forrester reviews designer Beth Webb’s book and finds reason to slow down and enjoy the view
beth webb, bedroom, eye for beauty
“In a guest room on the house’s main level, the mélange of fabrics and textures takes soft, softer, and softest to the maximum in an exceptionally dreamy tone-on-tone palette. Linen drapery columns frame the window and bring verticality and appropriate scale to the space. From the curtain hardware to the bedframe to the stool bases, slender linear elements introduce graphic detail and dimension.” From Beth Webb: An Eye for Beauty. Photo by Emily Followill

Designer Beth Webb came into her career through the side door of the art world—first as a student in the Sotheby’s Works of Art course in London, then as a gallery rep and later as an art dealer herself. It’s a path that has served her well. Webb’s interiors reflect the sure hand and sharp eye of someone who understands form, line, color, and balance. The serene sanctuaries she creates have an effortless feel that should not be mistaken for a decorator on autopilot. “No room, no home, should give up all the secrets of its décor to prying eyes on a first date,” she writes in An Eye for Beauty.

Webb’s rooms may look monochromatic at first, but a second glance reveals the artistry of a hundred details—a kitchen’s limewashed wood finish, a dining room’s mirrored surface, a curtain’s sumptuous trim. “Slow down,” Webb’s Southern mother use to admonish a young, restless Beth. This book offers a welcome opportunity to do just that.

By Kirk Reed Forrester

eye for beauty

Beth Webb: An Eye for Beauty: Rooms That Speak to the Senses (Rizzoli New York, 2017)

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