|Collage of tablecloths by designer Tammis Keefe.|
Due to an outstanding effort by my DH, tablecloths have now joined handkerchiefs and linen towels as categories on the website www.tammiskeefe.com. Tammis Keefe (1913 - 1960) was a woman textile designer who deserves to be better known and, slowly but surely, we're creating an online catalogue raisonne of her oeuvre.
It's exciting to find Keefe's work in contemporary books and magazines, and I was delighted to discover the Party tablecloth featured in William Pahlmann's eponymous book The Pahlmann Book of Interior Design, first published in 1955 (wikipedia date is incorrect). Pahlmann was an influential decorator and product designer who led the interior design department at Lord & Taylor before establishing his own independent firm. He was also responsible for the first incarnation of the Four Seasons Restaurant, in architect Philip Johnson's Manhattan masterpiece, the Seagram Building.
|Party tablecloth, The Pahlmann Book of Interior Design.|
|Party tablecloth, detail.|
Although my copy of this book is a library discard, indicating that the collections manager found the book out-dated or superseded, I find Pahlmann's advice still timely.
Small dining spaces for informal family meals are often included in kitchens and while I hate to refer to these as the breakfast "nooks," that's what they grew out of. See that this space is well-lighted and attractive, since you should always eat in attractive circumstances if you want to preserve your digestion. Children, especially, need light when they eat. These eating spaces usually accommodate a table and four chairs, but some people have reduced them to counters, where the family lines up. There is always something sketchy and hurried about a counter meal and, personally, I prefer a table where there are children in the house.
--Pahlmann, p. 230
Amen - especially with a Keefe tablecloth on the table!