Divine Flooring

Even floor tiles can be uplifting.

After an intensive investigation into clays and color glazes, Paris Ceramics has added to its permanent collection exact replicas of tiles found in the papal bedroom of the Palais des Papes at Avignon.

The palace in Provence housed seven French popes during the Babylonian Captivity, from 1309 to 1378. After that time, the papal court was moved back to the Vatican.

Some of the tiles ($43 per square foot) feature Gothic details and geometric patterns representing religious or national symbols; others have brilliant coordinating solid colors. All are hand-painted by Paris Ceramics artists.


Paris Ceramics, founded in 1982 by Charles Smallbone, is a world leader in the installation of floors, murals, mosaics and ceramics. Smallbone and his staff are experts in the reclamation of antique floors and hand-painted decorative ceramics.

Call Paris Ceramics’ showroom on Melrose Avenue, Los Angeles, at (213) 653-2230.

Bold Blooms

Marimekko’s new bedroom ensemble is bursting with big blooms.


The Kristina collection, a vivacious combination of yellow, blue and green, was recolored exclusively for Mervyn’s California, but the style remains true to Marimekko.

Tropical leaves sprout on the dust ruffle, and the sheets are blue and white to catch a bit of the casualness of Southern California year-round summer.

Comforter queen sets start at $179. Sheets start at $12 for a twin.

For the nearest Mervyn’s, call (800) 637-8967.


Le Lamp

The simple sophistication of all things French shines through in the latest offerings by Afton Grove of San Diego.

From grand chandeliers to tabletop items such as baskets, votives and trays, the metals used to make the pieces are small in diameter, lending each piece a delicate, ornate look. The Ritz, Cite and Metro electric lamps (all $65) have thick bases, but their lines appeal to those who have a heart for old-fashioned stylings.

The French wire chandeliers use candles or votives to give any room some drama.


Call (619) 456-2200.