Contact Us    Register    Login

return to press index

Franco File by Diane Dorrans Saeks
~ Excerpted from Paper City, January 2003. Photography by Jennifer Binder.

From Louis XIV to vintage embroidery to Old Paris plates, if it's chic and French, it can be found in San Francisco, a city that still lives up to it's old nickname, ”Paris of the West.” Savvy collectors of both the fine and funky head for stores and design shops along Sacramento Street, Polk Gulch and in hidden corners around the Design Center, Jackson Square and Hayes Valley.

Place and Proportion. Antiquare Terry Gross, her daughter Lisa and the staff of Urban Chateau fly to the South of France and the Ile-de-France at least three times a year. There they seek out unique sources for gilded and painted antique furniture, vintage Paris salon leather club chairs and quirky decorative objects. Terry has a special love of neoclassical French styles, and Louis XVI is one of her idols, so her collections tend to be refined and understated, with just a splash of gilding. She gathers superbly proportioned, classical French furniture, portraits, statuary, decorative porcelains, carved candlesticks, elaborate chandeliers and sconces. Chairs and sofas are upholstered in the traditional, very subtle French manner—no frills or over-stuffing.

Download PDF of entire article (740kb)