Home Decor

Tips and observations pertaining to home decor.

6/13/2005

The Ernest Hemingway furniture collection

Ernest Hemingway lived an extraordinary life; besides being a celebrated author, he traveled widely and participated in many dangerous pursuits. He was an ambulance driver in the first World War, he popularized "running with the bulls" in Pamplona, Spain, he lived and fished for big game fish in the Florida Keys, and he fly-fished in Ketchum, Idaho. While living life to the fullest, Hemingway wrote about his adventures and left works that are now classics of literature.

Thomasville has created a new line of furniture inspired by Hemingway's life. Hemingway traveled widely, spending time in cities as diverse as Paris, Venice, Havana, and Key West. He was a man's man, and although troubled at times, he crammed a lot of active living into his life. The Hemingway furniture collection reflects his interests, his travels, and his passion for the richness of life. The collection is influenced by his travels; there are a Safari Mirror, Mt. Kenya Armoire, Kilimanjaro Bedside Chest, Dresser and Bed, for instance, as well as pieces that are named for Paris, Pamplona, Havana, and more.

The dining room furniture features leather club chairs, pedestal tables, and sideboards, china cabinets and arm chairs with rich fabrics. I can picture the big guy sitting in one of the club chairs, smoking a Cuban cigar, eating heartily and drinking rum, and talking, talking, talking into the night. This beautiful and substantial furniture would be an asset to any dining room, and the connection with Hemingway should lead to many conversations over long, enjoyable dinners. Who wouldn't want to dream up a fitting repast to the memory of this amazing author? Planning a feast in Hemingway's honor and serving it on the new dining room furniture named for him would be a great theme for a dinner party.

The living room designs represent the travels of Hemingway. There are pieces that call to mind Africa, with animal print fabrics and carvings. There's even a hippo ottoman shaped like the huge river animal and a carved kudu (antelope) table with a glass top. Animal print chairs, lodge tables, and a Serengeti side stand also reflect the African influence. However, those who like French furnishings won't be disappointed. There are several sofas, chairs, and ottomans with French influences, and there's even an amazing painted L'Etoile bar. Other pieces reflect Hemingway's time spent in Venice, such as the marble-topped San Marco console, the lovely Torcello bombe chest, and the Lido chairside curio.

Sleigh beds, panel beds, and the Old Havana king-size four poster bed are in the bedroom collection. Who wouldn't want to laze around on one of these stylish pieces? There are dressers, door chests, bachelor's chests, armoires, lingerie chests, and night stands, as well as a storage bench and several interesting mirrors. The mirrors reflect his four wives; two are named Pfeiffer and Gelhorn for his wives Pauline Pfeiffer and Martha Gelhorn, and the others are Safari, (wives Pauline and Mary each accompanied him on separate safaris to Africa), and Dorchester, named for a London hotel where he met his last wife, Mary Welsh.

The Hemingway collection contains many beautiful pieces of furniture, and there are many different influences. For one who is thinking of furnishing a room, these striking pieces are certainly worth a look

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