Melissa Collison


Dorothy Parker's Round Table

This week we're shining a light on Dorothy Parker (1893-1967) - the poet, writer, comic and critic responsible for flinging her brilliant, biting wit at early 20th century life. Perhaps the best introduction is given by Ms Parker herself:

“The first thing I do in the morning is brush my teeth and sharpen my tongue.”

Though life was difficult for Parker, her spirited words continue to help us form a zesty, devil-may-care attitude towards living, or at least bearing, our own lives. We'll leave you with more of those in our Round Table storyboard, a little imaginary guide to the interior life of Dorothy Parker.


Parker was a (later disparaging) member of the famous Algonquin Round Table (1919-1929), so first thing's first. You'll need a (1) walnut art deco dining table table to meet your "Vicious Circle" around, and a fair few chairs too.  We like look of these (2) Hungarian art deco cherry wood numbers. “Three be the things I shall never attain: Envy, content, and sufficient champagne.” (3) Better add some hand-made art deco sterling silver champagne coupes, perfectly housed in this naughty (4) walnut and brass convertible bar-slash-bookcase. “Take care of luxuries and the necessities will take care of themselves.” Surround yourself with jazz era luxuries like (5) a 1928 Czech vase by Lorenz Brothers and (6) early 20th century French art deco tortoise glass perfume bottle.  When you're known as the "Constant Reader" you'd better have some books lying around, and they might as well be (7) your own fine tomes. “Where’s the man could ease a heart / Like a satin gown?” Treat yourself to a (8) finely detailed 1920s Willard's dropped waist beaded flapper dress. “All I need is room enough to lay a hat and a few friends.” Pop on this (9) Frank R Jelleff 1920s flapper cloche hat, and for a final flourish, this (10) American art deco light fixture by Markel is sharp and pointed like Dotty's tongue. It might be a little much, but when in doubt remember: “A little bad taste is like a nice dash of paprika.”

If you'd like to read more on Dorothy Parker there are a couple of great pieces on Flavorwire.