Covet: A $3,000 Östen Kristiansson hunting chair

Before landing her curatorial gig at the Museum of Fine Arts in textile and fashion arts, Pamela Parmal was a budding pharmacist. But she just couldn’t shake her avant-garde upbringing. "My mother dressed us in fashions so far ahead of everyone, it felt like we were out of style," she says. So she switched careers to follow in her artsy family’s footsteps. Now she works with 2nd-century silks and 17th-century shoes, and runs ambitious exhibitions like last year’s "Fashion Show: Paris Collections" and this November’s "And So to Bed," a showcase of ornate Indian bed curtains.

Despite all the antiquity, at home Parmal and her husband, Bill, prefer the clean lines of Danish modern furniture, like this rare circa-1950 Östen Kristiansson chair that she spied at South Boston’s Machine Age. "Our bedroom has no dressers or closets," Parmal says, "just a mattress on a tatami mat, a Giacometti print, and two Meiji drawings. I’d put the chair right in the corner."

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