Friday, April 30, 2010

New York Social Diary Interviews Duane Hampton

Sian Ballen opens with:

From the very start of my interview with Duane Hampton, widow of renowned decorator Mark Hampton, I felt like I was chatting with an old girl friend. She’s a witty, charming woman with a keen sense of humor who sees life for what it is and makes it work.

After the early death of her husband in 1998 she was left holding the (beautifully decorated) fort at the age of 55. As she herself says: “You have to figure out a new life for yourself—and it’s not all terrible.” While their youngest daughter, Alexa Hampton, continued to head the family design firm, Duane returned to her earlier career as a writer. Her latest book, Mark Hampton, An American Decorator, is released this week by Rizzoli. It is, as one might expect, a tribute to a man of many talents: a famous decorator, loyal friend, devoted father and a marriage to wife who was his equal partner on every stage.