modern living + innovative design + inspiring ideas
Regina-Andrew Arc21" Metal Wall Sconce
“Love the polished finish on this light. The swing-arm style is perfect for the bedside.”
- T. Jackson, Interior Designer
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Architectural Digest held their annual Home Design Show in New York at Pier 94 and it was bigger than ever. The event featured 400 exhibitors, many of them manufacturers and distributors of luxury products. There was a special section “Made," which featured handcrafted accessories and furniture by a talented group of artists and designers. At the event, there were also design seminars presented by The New York Times featuring speakers from the Sustainable Furnishings Council.
From the"Made" section, one of the featured artists was Kanik Chung who displayed some of her unique glass plates with glass bubbles (above). These would make cool wall art decor if done in a cluster. More modern home decor artists made big statements, such as Heather Kocsis who showcased her city scape artwork and Vicki Da Silva who displayed some of her interiors light photography (below).
There were furniture designers such as Peter Buley who uses only recycled materials for his designs, like this sliding-door credenza (below). His modern furniture almost doubles as artwork.
Not listed in any of the directories was Art for Kids, a company who manufacturers furniture and accessories for kid's rooms and nurseries. This company had an extremely fun and colorful display of art that undoubtedly helped children get excited about design.
No matter what your age or industry background, the A.D. Home Design Show each year is all about inspiration. By showcasing unique and beautiful work from designers an artists, hopefully everyone walks away with an idea and bit of creativity.
For more information on this event or the featured artists, designers and manufactures please visit A.D. Home Design Show.
Images: A.D. Home Design Show, Markets of New York
This week we celebrate the birthday of Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, "father of modern architecture." In observance of his brilliance, let's take a look at his most notable accomplishments.
Crown Hall (above), located in Chicago, was completed in 1956 during Mies's tenure as director of Illionois Institute of Technology's Department of Architecture. This design features industrial simplicity with exposed steel frame construction.
Farnsworth House is a one-room weekend retreat built in Plano, Illinois. It is brilliantly designed to be one with the landscape. The glass panels and white painted steel construction are so simple and elegant, it's the perfect design aesthetic for a weekend home.
The Barcelona Pavilion was completed in 1929 for the International Exposition in Barcelona, Spain. Seamlessly merging structure with water, Mies selected marble, red onyx and travertine to create this stunning structure. Such extravagant materials contrasts this beautifully simple structure.
In addition to Mies's profound accomplishments in architecture, he also designed modern furniture and his furniture is just as well known. For example, the Barcelona chair and ottoman (below). This noteworthy pair, inspired by ancient campaign and folding chairs, is made of steel with a chrome finish and leather upholstery. Like the Barcelona Pavilion, it was also designed for the 1929 International Exposition in Barcelona, Spain. Mies designed much more sleek furniture which has been inspiring furniture design ever since, such as stylish ergonomic office chairs.
Tuesday would have been Mies's 126th birthday.
Images: Wikipedia, Paul J. White
My love for acrylic in interior design started with a stay at the Hudson Hotel in New York a few years ago and it has stayed with me ever since. I think acrylic is the perfect contrast against natural materials. It adds life and light without being too heavy or dominating. It's a perfect element of the unexpected whether it be clear or colored. It mixes perfectly with modern interiors and contrasts beautifully with traditional. Here are some amazing interiors to prove it!
The clear acrylic chairs work well with the natural elements of this kitchen and breakfast room. By being visually unobtrusive they make the space feel larger and the modern lighting make a statement.
The fireplace is the main focus of this space and the acrylic chairs do a great job of complimenting that. I love how the fireplace can be seen through the chair at the end of the table. Mixing transparent orange chairs and clear chairs is also a nice touch in this modern organic space.
This table let's the chrome lighting make the statement and let's the floors shine through. It really brings light into this rich setting.
The sleek and smoky outdoor dining chairs are perfect in this slightly rustic setting that opens up to the exterior.
This black acrylic chair can stand all on it's own. It is the perfect accent in any space.
Images: Hudson Hotel, DecorPad, Arkimom, Design Indulgences
One very hot trend right now is open shelving, but it's a little more than a trend I believe... This design method is great for saving space and adding many more platforms (literally) for home decor options. This clean modern kitchen (above) uses the open shelving for accents and the opportunity to bring in other materals, such as those gorgeous wood bowls. Having the combination of cabinets and open shelving is also a good idea so you can keep the less attractive items behind closed doors. But don't hide your ceramics just because they don't match, sometimes those make the best accessories!
You can't deny that the dark wall in this kitchen is perfect for accentuating the open metal shelves and everything on them. The stainless steel material was a great choice to keep the storage sleek and not too heavy.
This modern kitchen does a great job of mixing materials. Spanish tile, warm woods and sleek stainless steel work together to create an eclectically modern kitchen with super cool open shelving. What a beautiful idea to open up the bottom cabinests and create shelving while keeping the walls free for art!
You can add color with the shelves in addition to the accessories you place on them. The clean white tile and floors really make the love for yellow pop in this kitchen. Modern barstools are a nice addition for keeping this space functional. To see more yellow in the kitchen, be sure to read Annie's post - It is Always Sunny in a Yellow Kitchen.
If you decide to implement these ideas in your space, notice how in each image only the more attractive accessories are displayed on the shelves and the rest are tucked away behind closed cabinets. Scales and colors are also important, but often times a difficult balance. Once you find the perfect combination, you'll see how open shelving can be a great way to maximize your space and look very cool doing it.
Images: Live, Apartment Therapy, Revel, House & Home
For most of us, art plays a central role in our homes. It speaks to our interests, our ideals, and in a very visceral way, to the core of who we are. And yet, as much as we might love a Jeff Koons balloon dog or a Damien Hirst stuffed shark at the museum, how many of us are game for bringing the truly avant-garde into our homes?
For serious art collectors, art rules the home. Some see their homes overrun by their collections. Others build homes specifically with their art collections in mind. Some will actually see their homes become the art itself, as in the image above, in which artist Yayoi Kusama transformed a home in Australia with polka dot stickers...to the children's delight of course.
The Sapphire Gallery in Los Angeles was designed as a home addition by XTEN Architecture to house the owner's art collection. Mixed in with the artwork is a tasteful blend of furniture and contemporary lighting fixtures.
Contemporary art galleries benefit from clutter-free interiors when they show new work. Real life doesn't always allow for that, however. When their son outgrew his childhood toys, Manhattan Beach collectors Homeira and Arnold Goldstein commissioned artist Simon Ouwerkerk to build a sculpture out of them to be hung from the ceiling. You'll notice that recessed lighting is used discreetly throughout the home to showcase the rest of their extensive art collection.
Maybe you want to commission the artist for your clutter too? Here's a detail shot of Ouwerkerk's work recently at Garboushian Gallery in Beverly Hills.
New York gallery owner Paige West's Tribeca home is a stunning testament to her profession. Contemporary art pieces, fresh colors and interesting wall treatments combine well to make a pretty good case for living with the art she sells.
We may not all have the means to erect temples to house our contemporary art collections (nor the means to amass a substantial art collection), but I'd like to think it's possible to look beyond purely decorative art and instead collect and display the art you really love - no matter how avant-garde it is - in even the most traditional interiors. As long as you love the piece, you'll want to live with it, right? So the saying goes anyway.
Images: Freshness Mag, Freshome, Los Angeles Times, Garboushian Gallery, The Cool Hunter
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