Detours La Fonda

In February, I had the opportunity to work with the retail shop Detours La Fonda in the historical La Fonda Hotel in Santa Fe for their print advertisements. I worked with Bob Borden of Ideas and People and  Stella did the styling, we often work together on commercial and creative projects. Here Stella picked up Mary Colter’s suitcase to add to the photo story, bringing her back into the light. Mary’s suitcase remained with La Fonda Hotel in Santa Fe all these years. She was the force behind the Fred Harvey House & Co, starting in 1902, being their architect and interior designer for the hotels, and restaurants for the newfound southwest railroad.  Here Mary embodied the quality, comfort, and formulated the southwest design to include Native artisans. She supported the natives artistry in wovens, architecture, and murals. while being sensitive to the surrounding landscape and embracing the cultures. She was known to be intimidating, I guess you would have to be in the early 1900’s, to be a woman architect and designer in charge! Her collaboration with Fred Harvey Co. and Santa Fe Railroad is still present today. She blended Spanish Colonial revival, Mission revival and Native American motifs that became popular in the Southwest. She cared about the back story where things originated and applied this knowledge to her projects- which there were many!