Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Head Over Heels.

You never know where you'll find inspiration. And sometimes it's hard to understand exactly why something inspires you in the first place. That's what happened to us when we saw the latest project from Dominic Wilcox for this year's London Design Festival. The always clever Wilcox created a "field" from 400 eco-friendly shoes with rising shoe laces growing towards the light. We know it's sort of silly, but we sure do like it! Click here for a quick video on his thought process behind the installation.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

You Light Up My Life.

We're always excited to learn about new and inspiring blogs, and we were especially thrilled to learn about ny10536 from our friends over at Remodelista – another favorite blog! ny10536 is the brainchild of British-born, NY-based design consultant Richard Ostell and is one of the most beautiful and thoughtful collections of imagery we've seen in a long time and it's sure to become a new morning ritual. A bit eclectic, yet simple and to the point, this blog has a warm spirit that can't help but stimulate your senses and just make you feel good inside.

Not only has Ostell created this glowing new resource for us to obsess over, he's also designed a house in Katonah, an hour outside of Manhattan, that is equally inspiring with it's easy, sophisticated charm (see above photos). "I like an edited mix of very honest, straightforward simple things," Ostell says. "Things that have either a patina of age or have been made by hand. I like natural materials and the mix of old and modern." Ditto, ditto and ditto. Wait a minute Richard .... could we possibly be related? If so, will you please host the next family reunion?

Monday, September 21, 2009

Read It And Weep.

Back in January we talked about attending a fantastic party at the home of George Yabu & Glenn Pushelberg from the interior design firm Yabu Pushelberg. We haven't stopped thinking about their amazing home and have long admired their handsome work. Well, the good news is now we can see a lot more of that work in their new self-titled book coming out October 27th (you can pre-order your copy here!).

With offices in New York and Toronto, this firm was founded in 1980 and has been creating distinctive environments for a diverse and high-profile clientele ever since, including: Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts, St. Regis Hotels, Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Louis Vuitton, Bergdorf Goodman, Tiffany & Co., and one of our favorite steakhouses here in New York, Primehouse. All of these projects and more are featured in their beautifully designed book with text by William Norwich, contributing editor to VOGUE and former Style & Entertaining editor of The New York Times Magazine.

We're officially counting down the days until we get our copy. The above images are terrific but they've no doubt left us crying for more!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Hot Rod.

Tuesday evening we were fortunate enough to attend ESPASSO's lavish celebration honoring Brazilian designer Sergio Rodrigues and the introduction of his exclusive lighting collection and acclaimed Aspas armchair (top photo). It was a great night full of festive Brazilian music, signature caipirinhas, and delicious food including a cake celebrating Rodrigues' 82nd birthday. ESPASSO also showcased several new pieces that will be available in their collection this fall, including pieces by design duo Mendes-Hirth, Paulo Mendes da Rocha, Michel Arnoult and Flávio de Carvalho.

Sergio Rodrigues has been dubbed the “father of Brazilian furniture” and is responsible for having established a new paradigm of design in his quest for a clearly recognizable Brazilian identity. Born into a traditional family of intellectuals and artists in 1927 in Rio de Janeiro, Rodrigues became notorious in the 1950s for his use of designs in jacarandá, peroba and imbuia wood that became quintessential icons in the Brazilian and international scene. He explains, “my designs are instinctual and purely Brazilian in spirit. My main objective has never been to compete with other designers, but simply to create something from the heart that is interesting and energizing.” He's certainly accomplished that and it was an absolute honor to have the opportunity to meet this legendary designer.

We'd like to thank ESPASSO for including us in the festivities and we strongly suggest you stop by this gorgeous Tribeca showroom designed by award winning architect Matthew Bremer and check out this phenomenal collection.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Sneak Preview.

We just got sent the trailer for the new film A Single Man and we think it looks absolutely stunning. A Single Man is the directorial debut from designer Tom Ford who also coproduced, cowrote and called this film "the most personal thing" he's ever done. The colors and work of Mad Men's production designer Dan Bishop, who filled the same role for A Single Man, is instantly recognizable, and apparently the show's star Jon Hamm does an uncredited voiceover in the film.

Based on the novel by Christopher Isherwood, the story centers on an English professor who, after the sudden death of his partner tries to go about his typical day in Los Angeles. (You can buy the book here!)

The movie is already receiving good reviews — the Times UK called it "a thing of heart-stopping beauty . . . There will be critics who will be unable to get past the director’s background, but rest assured: Tom Ford is the real deal." Variety's verdict: "Luminous and treasurable, despite its imperfections. An impressive helming debut for fashion designer Tom Ford." Watch the trailer below. We literally cannot wait! (from insider wire).

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Smokin' Show.

Last week was full of openings and design events to kick off the new fall season and before we could say "cutting for approval", our dance card was officially full. It felt like one giant "back to school" party and we had a fantastic time getting caught up with so many folks we'd lost touch with over the busy summer. One of those people was our good friend Paul Latham whose firm is participating in Metropolitan Home's Showtime House which benefits Housing Works.

Set in two $25.5 million penthouses overlooking Manhattan's skyline, this 14,000-square-foot dream space has become the creative playground for 14 of the world’s leading architects and designers. Their diverse skills and backgrounds bring dynamic layers to the house, while the off-beat characters and plot-lines from six of Showtime's hottest original series give their work must-see style.

Our friend Paul, who once worked with renowned designer Benjamin Noriega-Ortiz, created a smoking lounge inspired by the show Weeds. The clever combination of different greens, a living terrarium and a glazed ceramic plant nods to Weeds in a more literal way and will leave you craving more of Latham's sophisticated interiors. To satisfy your fix, be sure and check out this entertaining show running through October 18th at the Tribeca Summit Loft Condominiums. It's definitely worth checking out (.... fo' shizzle). (Photos by Antoine Bootz, courtesy of Metropolitan Home’s Showtime House 2009)

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Mouth To Mouth Restoration.

We "tweeted" last week about how we were intrigued with our new Restoration Hardware catalog. Well, tonight we were invited to attend the official launch of their new Flatiron Gallery here in NYC and we were able to see the new furniture collection up close and in person. The verdict .... it's pretty fantastic. The Elle Decor sponsored party helped benefit God's Love We Deliver while introducing RH's exclusive Artisan line of large-scale, handmade antique reproductions as well as original crafts pieces. This is all worth mentioning because it's a pretty bold and dramatic move, especially considering the current economic climate. This "re-branding" was the brain-child of CEO Gary Friedman who decided rather than scaling back, to instead go against conventional wisdom and pursue an even higher level of craftsmanship and design. We applaud his risk-tasking, not only because their entire design concept has been on a serious lifeline the past few years, but also because there's a definite shift happening in the design community and it's time for furniture manufacturers to shake things up.

At tonight's opening, the Slinky's and down foot-blankets were out while sophisticated furnishings and arrangements that look as though they were masterminded by Belgian designer Axel Vervoordt were in. We'll be honest, we're still trying to reconcile our feelings with all of this. While Mr. Friedman and his company have created some highly tasteful furnishings and are clearly moving in a new direction, we're not 100% sure their client base will be ready to jump on board. That's what makes this story even more significant and equally intriguing. It's a huge gamble and if it turns in their favor, it will no doubt have a giant affect on other furniture retailers as well as high-end furniture showrooms and how they conduct their business. But that's what we love about this particular risk. We're living in very exciting times where new opportunities could present themselves at any moment. We're rooting for you Restoration Hardware! To read a full statement on RH's new direction from their CEO click here.