PaperCity Magazine

PaperCity Dallas November 2023

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Air Force in England. A paneled Chinese Coromandel screen — a rare find with softer pink and green instead of the usual dark coloration — hangs over a banquette like an art piece. There are natural jute rugs and elegantly worn Oushak carpets, along with Shelley's framed needlework fragments from the 18 th - and 19th -centuries, to which Minton added others. Faux bois wallpaper from France envelops the dining room walls and ceiling, an unexpected detail that's become one of Arrington's favorites. The family room is everyone's hangout, with a fireplace paneled in 100-year-old walnut, Italian game table, and plump sofa and armchairs. "It's warm and homey," he says. "When Joe Minton designs a house, I call it 'instant living.'" (Continued) to design the interiors with French and English antiques. The house is still one of the most talked about in Midland. Since then, they've worked together on a half-dozen other projects, including offices for Arrington's independent oil company, where he displays more than 650 Ansel Adams photographs — said to be the largest such collection in the world. The Arringtons' adult children and grandchildren all live in Dallas, so their two-story 100-year-old pied à terre in Highland Park is a gathering spot for the family — a sophisticated and comfortable home-away-from-home. S ometimes Joe Minton dreams up rooms long before the job ever a p p e a r s . O n e s u c h room, conceived years earlier, involved painting walls and ceiling entirely in pink. "Not just any pink, but a soft gray- pink," he says. The Arringtons' spacious living room was the right opportunity to float the idea. "I was worried it might be a hard sell, but I hit them with it, and they liked it." After trying out a lot of different paints, they settled on Benjamin Moore Old Country, a dusky pink hue with hints of peach and a nostalgic charm. The room is amply layered with similar pink tones, such as the banquettes flanking the fireplace, which wear a luscious yet durable Perennials velvet. A pair of raspberry tiger- stripe benches is a witty surprise when you open the front door, and the Knole-style sofa's aqua hue is pulled from a historic 1926 hand-blocked floral linen design by the Canadian fabric company Hazelton House, which covers many of the room's chairs. The same fabric was used in a different colorway in the clients' Midland house. "It's a beautiful fabric and one of my favorites; I try to use it whenever I can," Minton says. Black makes an intentional bold appearance here and there in the living room to provide a bit of edge to the pink; a high-gloss front door and a streaked Belgian marble fireplace are two examples of noir at work. A former Air Force first lieutenant, Minton spent the late '50s stationed near Cambridge, England, where he fell for period English and Continental antiques. He also delved into a lifelong study of English country houses. The Arringtons' Highland Park house exudes the charm and comfort of English country-house style, cleverly defined by the British magazine House & Garden in August 2022 as "a mix of antique furnishings, at least one capacious sofa with a generous serving of cushions, rugs, table lamps with fabric shades, and flowers both fresh and recreated in prints and paintings. Antique textiles, a dash of modernity, a flourish of the oriental…" Many of the antiques hail from Shelley Arrington's side of the family, including a tall secretary with a collection of unglazed white porcelain vases and pitchers. Other furnishings came from the couple's previous houses and were refinished or recovered. It's all mixed with custom Kisabeth seating and English and French antiques from Minton's longtime store in the Dallas Design District, including an 18th-century butler's chest the designer bought in Cornwall while stationed with the Opposite page: Benjamin Moore Old Country pink living-room walls. Custom chairs by Kisabeth Furniture, upholstered in a historic 1926 floral block-print linen design by Hazelton House. Visual Comfort chandelier. Pair of bouillotte lamps and Chinese cinnabar plate on wall from Joseph Minton Antiques. Bottom left: Flanking the fireplace in the living room is a pair of custom banquettes by Kisabeth Furniture, upholstered in Perennials velvet. Custom Kisabeth ottoman. Antique Chinese coromandel screen and sconces from Joseph Minton Antiques. Below: The breakfast room's French trumeau mirror and English Windsor chairs are from Joseph Minton Antiques. The table is reproduction country French. Visual Comfort lantern. 105

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