Hope everyone is staying warm and lifting with their knees when they shovel, it's crazy out there lately. I drove down to New York last Friday to attend NYNOW, formerly NYIGF, the gift show at the Javits Center. In two and a half days—and 2700+ pictures later—I walked every single aisle of the show and saw some great products.
Mostly, I was really excited to be back in New York and to see a lot of the vendors I haven't seen in a while, since I missed the last three shows (not sure how that time flew so quickly). It was great to catch up with people and this was my first time experiencing the show since they changed the format and rebranded. I think it worked out well to have all the home companies under one roof, though as I walked the show, I realized there were several brands that I didn't see. I'm hoping they'll be there in August.
At any rate, I'm looking forward to sharing the things that I saw over the next weeks and months. In addition to new and interesting products, the booths themselves are often styled creatively. Here are just a few fun things I noticed:
When piles of projects come home from school, it can be a little overwhelming to figure out what to do with them. Save? Toss? Display? Aerin Lauder, of Estée Lauder and Aerin, has a beautiful and simple solution to display the art and really enjoy it every day. This shot from an old Elle Decor story shows how Lauder wonderfully incorporated her children and their creative masterpieces in this cozy kitchen nook at her East Hampton house. I'm kind of dying to jump into this picture to have juice and a parfait at that banquette.
I like that the art and her children's super adorable portraits, offset by pale blue walls above the shelf, are mixed with a Jeff Koons vase. Even though the vase is high end, its shaggy puppy shape is fun and feels right in this room. Don't be afraid to have adult and kid things in the same space. As someone currently living in a house where four generations of my family have now lived, I'm a fan of how Lauder carried on (but updated) the house's blue-and-white palette—honoring her grandmother Estée, whose house and favorite color combo these were.
Speaking of this house and kids, our double-header birthday parties for the girls are tomorrow so we're off to pick up supplies, treats, clean the house, and decorate. It should be a lot of fun and we're looking forward to it.
Hope everyone has a great weekend!
image via elle decor
The last several days have been a bit insane, so I'm glad it's Friday! Hope everyone has a fun weekend planned! A few lovely things I saw this week (click images for purchasing/details):
This 14" diameter bowl ($40, Horchow) is made of recycled metal and jute rope. The pattern reminds me of dream catchers without the feathers and it's always nice to have natural materials mixed in with your decor.
I have an oval dining table, and it seems so hard to find placemats that I like and will fit well all next to each other. But regardless of fit, I love the colors of these ($36 each, ABC Home) and the metallic thread woven throughout the raw hemp. I also like that they're handcrafted at an economically sustainable embroidery co-op in Vietnam.
I know, I know. These have been around a while, but I do truly love the color combos and the space-saving quality of these nylon whisks ($18 each, Gretel). And I never got to feature them when I wanted to, so let me get it out of my system. There. I'm curious to know how they stand up under regular use. Has anyone used one?
This is one of those cases where something functional has been made beautiful. Looking at this piece you almost don't realize it's meant to put flies and other pests down ($14, Schoolhouse Electric & Supply Co.). It's handcrafted in Germany and made from leather and beechwood.
Little Sun ($28, MoMA Store) is a solar-powered LED lamp developed by artist Olafur Eliasson and solar engineer Frederik Ottesen. Every purchase makes it possible for Little Suns, which provide clean reliable light, to be sold at locally affordable prices to the 1.6 billion people worldwide living in communities without access to the electrical grid.
One of the easiest ways to create a look that's truly your own is to include handmade products in your house. The best thing about handmade goods is that they're generally limited in quantity, so few people will have the same pieces as you, and even those that aren't so limited are still special because it's very difficult to achieve uniform precision on each creation. But, I bet artists and designers prefer it that way; the happy accidents and imperceptible mistakes behind each piece may be totally unrecognizable to you but tell the story of their process.
The story behind each piece, or more precisely, the story behind the Maker of each piece, is exactly what the site BRIKA is after. How the designers got started, what music they listen to when creating, what inspires them—all of that matters and creates a connection to people all over the country pursuing their passion.
One of those people is Karen Young (above), the Brooklyn-based designer behind Hammocks & High Tea. Karen is a joy—I've been lucky enough to work with her in the past—and is just one of dozens of women (mostly) and men featured who've dedicated their lives to the imprecise, but monumentally fulfilling, work of crafting their products by hand. Karen is selling some of her fabulous dopp kits in exclusive patterns for the site.
Also, completely randomly, I came across jewelry maker Penelope Rakov who went to my high school, graduating only a few years ahead of me (I remembered her name)! Small world.
Many of the products featured on BRIKA are modern interpretations of traditional techniques practiced by past craftspeople and artisans, and the founders of the site hope that the pieces bought today will become new heirlooms to be passed down.
Here are my favorite products available at BRIKA right now (click the images to purchase or see more):
Check out the site and let me know which pieces are your favorite!
product images via Brika
We had a fun afternoon Sunday at the local Parade of Homes. We toured eight houses, each from different area builders, and I think it was a successful show. It's always amusing listening to all the other people touring the houses to see who likes what.
For the most part, I think everyone played it pretty safe design-wise. These showhouses generally aren't about trends or pushing the envelope, so I didn't see any extremely bold colors, patterns, or off-beat design choices, but I saw a lot that I liked that would appeal to the average homeowner. There were a few things that weren't necessarily my taste, sure, but nothing that really turned me off—that has happened in the past.
I wanted to share the elements and ideas I liked best that, for the most part, anyone could do.
Italian designer Paola Navone's highly-anticipated collection for Crate and Barrel debuted in select stores and online today; the line will roll out to all stores by the end of the week. It is the first of three planned collections and includes nearly 150 pieces of tabletop, furniture, textiles, lighting, and decorative accents. Paola Navone is a renowned talent with her hand in architecture, interior design, product design, and set design.
Organic shapes and a mix of materials all evoke the Mediterranean inspiration that threads itself through much of the well-traveled designer's work.
I hope everyone had a great weekend. I wasn't originally going to take a break from posting, but then I decided to give myself the days off, especially since I was in a temporary lull from deadlines for my freelance work. I felt guilty about it, but I'm glad I did. We spent a day at the state fair, cooked out twice, swam, and had a good time. My mom even made homemade funnel cake, yum!
But school starts tomorrow and it is already jeans and long-sleeve weather here today, though I hope that doesn't last.
Most of you probably know about the brand OXO, and you probably have some of their kitchen and storage solutions in your house right now; I do. Of course, they do more, but one of the best things OXO does is partner with Cookies for Kids' Cancer, a non-profit organization founded by two of their employees, Gretchen and Larry Witt.
Many of us in magazines know Gretchen from her PR work for OXO. I was working at O Magazine in 2007 when her then-two-year-old son Liam was diagnosed with a rare cancer. At Traditional Home, we had just months before honored Gretchen (as a Classic Woman Award recipient for her work raising money and awareness for pediatric cancer), when Liam lost his courageous battle in January 2011.
When starting the treatment process with their son, the Witts were surprised to learn that despite pediatric cancer being the #1 disease killer of children, there was a significant lack of funding for research and development of safer, more effective treatments. They dedicated themselves to raising money for the cause, and have done so through huge bake sales. The foundation provides the tools and support for fundraising bake sales of all sizes and their own gourmet cookies are for sale at their website.
September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month and OXO is partnering with Cookies for Kids' Cancer for their annual program: for each specially-marked OXO baking product sold, 25 cents goes to Cookies for Kids' Cancer as part of its pledge to donate up to $100,000.
I know it's a little early to think about the holidays, but if you plan on upgrading or replacing any of your baking tools prior to cookie-baking season, please consider the specially-marked OXO Good Grips products.
I am thankful to have two currently healthy daughters, but I know others who are, or have been, where the Witts were, including a friend of mine. I was honored to meet the unfailingly positive Liam, and his parents are a constant inspiration. Each year, in honor of my daughters' birthdays, I make a donation to Cookies for Kids' Cancer.
Please be a "Good Cookie" and participate! Click here to buy online.
images via OXO
#checkout this blog with shop-themed puns
© 2014 | mrkt