Interiors of Gilded Age Mansions

Nothing says glitz and glam like gilded decor. A gleaming layer of gold leaf instantly elevates not only the object to which it is applied, but also the entire space in which it is placed. The oversize French mirror in artist Anh Duong’s Long Island studio, the four-poster bed in the master bedroom of a Los Angeles residence by Daniel Romualdez, the 19th-century stools in designer Alex Papachristidis’ Hamptons retreat are just a few examples. Gilded age mansions decor has been featured in a variety of lavish spaces over the years. We’ve gathered some of the most stunning rooms that celebrate the glory of all things gold.

Strong base

Wharton believed that successful decorating required both interior and exterior architecture. Mr. Jayne invents it in its place. When he discovered a collection of original 18th-century Chinoiserie panels at Christie’s Auction House in London, he commissioned architect Peter Pennoyer to design a framework to display them in this Manhattan living room. He also silver-leafed the cornice and moldings to add architectural heft to the space. The vertical pilasters and wall paneling serve the classical imperative of visually connecting the base and cornice. The cornice moldings also extended past the wall and onto the ceiling. “It’s a clever trick,” Mr. Jayne said. “It makes a small room appear larger.”

Bedroom with well blended color

Mr. Jayne explained that when using Wharton’s rule to simplify bedrooms, “the trick is to make an interesting quiet room rather than a cop-out quiet room.” He used a cashmere throw, silk curtains and wallcovering, and a striéd wool drape in muted shades of gray, cream, white, and pale blue in this Pennsylvania space. “What bolsters the apparent simplicity is the use of many colors that are so close in value that they all blend together,” he said. Gerhard Richter’s moody paintings contrast with the otherwise neutral room but remain serene. “The bright colors of, say, Andy Warhol’s Soup Cans wouldn’t work,” Mr. Jayne explained.

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