Cortney and Robert Novogratz at their dinner party at Miami Basel in 2011
Gin and tonic, doll? I’m just mixing one up for our fabulously-chic friend, Cortney Novogratz, who was about to tell us why a girl who is known worldwide for her exuberant use of color would want to go back in time to – of all things – a black and white ball. But, like her pick in parties of the past, Cortney’s a gal who’s full of surprises and contradictions. In fact, that’s why she and her husband, Robert, the stars of HGTV’s hit television show, “Homes by Novogratz,” are known as one of the most successful design duos in the world. They’re all about mixing it up: new with old, high with low, bold with basic. Their books have become design bibles for those looking to create wildly original spaces and their new dinnerware collection for Macy’s and furniture and accessories line for CB2 underscore their vibrant aesthetic. Sidle up to the bar, doll, and listen in while this mother of seven tells us how her artistic style extends to her role as one of today’s top salonnieres and what she’ll wish for in September when she blows out her birthday candles.
How would you describe your entertaining style?
Fun, big and festive. Alcohol is a must.
Last party you hosted?
A New Year’s Eve party at an old inn in New England
Last party you attended?
The Kentucky Derby
Next party you’ll host?
A World Cup Soccer party with a Brazil theme
Most memorable party?
A dinner party we hosted in 2011 at Miami Basel. We designed everything using antiques we purchased in Palm Beach. We got 50 different chairs and used a vintage plate for every guest that they took home as a gift. We had a great crowd and wonderful weather, which is great for a New Yorker in December.
Cortney’s most memorable dinner party was a design triumph
Most fascinating person you met at a party?
Lou Reed at Suzanne Vega’s home
Dream dinner partner (dead or alive)?
Bob Marley. I’d ask him to sing all night.
Party you wish you could go back in time to attend?
Truman Capote’s black and white ball at The Plaza
Party you’d most like to throw?
A masquerade party
Your go-to party outfit?
A white lace dress
Song that always gets you dancing?
Blurred Lines by Robin Thicke
Signature topic of conversation at parties?
Best conversation piece in your home?
A huge Zaha Hadid sculpture
Cortney’s Zaha Hadid sculpture makes a strong yet sensuous statement in the master bedroom
You have found so many wonderful objects during your travels. What’s your favorite party find?
We love to collect vintage champagne buckets. We found a real beauty a few years ago in France.
What’s the best way to make your home a great entertaining space?
Make your home cool, approachable, open and not too cluttered. And always play great music.
Cortney and Robert’s dining room
What inspired you to create your dinnerware collection?
We are all about color, which people either love or feel a little scared of. We wanted to offer people a chic and fun design at an affordable price.
Novogratz Dinnerware Collection
What hostess gift do you like to give?
Glassy Baby candles
What are your favorite online sources for party items?
Party pet peeves?
No music, no alcohol and boring people
Party must haves?
Music, alcohol and fun people
What will you wish for this year when you blow out your birthday candles?
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