LEE RADZIWILL: a story of a woman, her life, & her homes

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Last week T Magazine ran an interview with Lee Radziwill. For those not in the know, Radziwill, is the younger sister of former first lady Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. While through the years Jacqueline often took the spotlight, the equally beautiful and glamorous Lee has suffered no shortage of public fascination and media attention. Born into a life of privilege, Lee spent her childhood summering on the beaches of the Hamptons and Newport, attending prestigious boarding schools and generally hobnobbing with the VIPs of the time. By the early 60s, Lee had married a Polish prince, her sister was the first lady of the United States and together, the two had firmly secured their positions in the highest echelons of society. Today, at nearly 80 years of age, Radziwill’s life story is a fascinating one, filled with joy and pain, success and failure, glamour and grit. If you are craving the juicy details (i.e. love, divorces, rivalries, alcoholism..), I highly recommend a read of her recent interview. However, you will want to stick around here for a moment as D has put together a beautiful if brief pictorial story line, with a focus on Radziwill’s two homes – one in Paris (which she designed herself) and the other in New York City. After all, what is a home if it doesn’t tell a story of where we have been, where we are going, who we are, and who we hope to be. Enjoy!

Lee Radziwill, looking glamorous as ever, in her Paris apartment a few years ago. The sofa is an early Christian Liaigre design. The steel commode, gilded bronze cocktail tables and giraffe sculpture are vintage.

Radziwill had the floors left unfinished, as she wanted them to feel sandy underfoot. Perhaps drawing from memories of summers on the beach.

When asked in her recent interview if she was always aware of her beauty, she stated simply, “From the word go.” Above – a drawing of Radziwill by René Bouché hangs above a bronze wolfhound. Radziwill has declared a lifelong love of animals, particularly dogs – having always had at least one.

In 1976, Radziwill announced herself an interior design consultant and began working out of her Fifth Avenue duplex. Here Radziwill sits in her Paris living room, which she designed herself. The botanical art was a gift from the Duke of Beaufort.

A continuation of Radziwill’s Paris living room. The upholstery is covered in Le Manach fabric.

A lush green balcony offers a view of the Eiffel Tower.

Lee and Jacqueline’s parents – Mr. and Mrs. J. V. Bouvier the Third at a horse show in Southampton, Long Island, 1932.

Jacqueline and Lee Bouvier, 1935.

Jacqueline and Lee at a debutante ball, 1951.

The living room in Radziwill’s New York apartment photographed for Elle Decor a few years ago. Sophisticated, worldly and eclectic, her two current homes still speak to the aesthetic of her American roots.

The New York home’s library walls, curtains and upholstery are done in Le Manach fabric. The settee is a Swedish antique.

A watercolor painting by Radziwill sits atop an art deco chest of drawers.

Montauk Village Association Benefit Cocktail Party – Lee Radziwill and her friend, Andy Warhol.

Radziwill with Mick and Bianca Jagger in Montauk, N.Y., 1972. Radziwill went on tour with the Rolling Stones that year.

Princess Lee Radziwill and daughter Anna Christina in the very famous Turquerie room of their London house, 1966. Interior design by Renzo Mongiardino.

Photos: 1. Henry Clarke/Condé Nast Ltd./Trunk Archive via t magazine, 2. by Eric Boman for Elle Decor, 3. from Radziwill’s book Happy Times, 4. by François Halard via t magazine, 5. Photograph by François Halard. Styled by Carolina Irving. via t magazine, 6. by François Halard via t magazine, 7. by François Halard via t magazine, 8. Bettmann/Corbis via t magazine, 9. via cote de texas,  10. Cecil Beaton/Vogue/Condé Nast via t magazine, 11-14. by Eric Boman for Elle Decor, 15. Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage, 16. Peter Beard/Art + Commerce via t magazine, 17. Cecil Beaton/Vogue/Condé Nast via t magazine



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There are 5 comments on this post
  1. July 25, 2013

    Lee Radiziwill is one of the chicest American socialites.

  2. Nonie Patrick
    February 19, 2014

    I had hoped Princess Radizwill would publish a Style and Entertainment book. She has
    such fine taste in fashion and decor.

    She seems very upbeat and pleasant in lieu of a trail of sorrows. I admire her and wish
    her the very best of everything.

    Most sincerely submitted-

  3. Charles Sizemore
    March 11, 2014

    I have loved reading on Lee Radzwill, she was so gracious and sophisticated, I always felt a true sense of style when I seen her, a true beauty, I would love to have a signed auto graph, I guess I can always hope.

  4. iain morrison
    October 12, 2014

    The Princess Radziwill is one of the world’s most stylish ladies who is also an incredible home – maker – I agree she should write a book on style

  5. Michelle burnett
    July 28, 2015

    I agree lee should write a book on style
    I think she should write as many books as she can we miss
    Her and Jackie I like her just as well as I do her sister
    Please let her know
    Madison ms

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