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  • Happy [Modern] 4th of July!

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     white pendant light

    Wishing you all a Happy 4th of July! Whatever it is you choose to do just remember to have fun, relax, and be safe!  

    Spending time with family and friends in the backyard is always one of my favorite ways to spend Independence Day and this outdoor cabana seems perfect for it!  

     geometric architecture

    Za Bor Architects developed this project for a popular TV show called, Dachniy Otvet, meaning The Village Talks. Unfortunately the TV show was not filmed at my home... I will have to find an equally cool backyard to celebrate Independence Day.   

     modern white dining table

    The concept behind this reality show intrigues me and this architecture definitely brings new meaning to outdoor cabana. The show invites designers and architects to re-design parts of a home for selected home-owners that agreed to participate in the show. These home-owners wanted somewhere to spend more quality time outdoors. The white tinted wood creates fourteen planes that are attached together, forming this nautical shape. The result is an outdoor structure, perfect for BBQ'ing.

    Red lighting fixtures, or any color for that matter, bring so much dynamic energy into any dining area while modern white dining chairs keep the space very clean, allowing nature and colorful accents to stand out.  

     outdoor kitchen

    The second part to the structure houses the outdoor kitchen. The char-grill is made of brick and steel and is sure to cook up a killer BBQ!  

     modern outdoor kitchen

    BBQ until the sun goes down, then turn on the modern outdoor lighting. This sculpture is sure to turn into a artistic light installation after sundown...

     architectural volumes

    The architect’s concept for the construction is "transparency and openness which inspires a contact between man and nature".

    Hope you get to spend some time outside today... Happy Independence Day from the ESL team!

    Images: Do You Love Where You Live

  • Homeboy Industries: Providing Second Chances

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    Homegirl Cafe

    All last week we provided you with our team's recaps and experiences at the Dwell on Design event. We wrapped it all up yesterday with Annie's post about the Sander Architect's Green House. Today, I'd like to start back at the beginning and talk about what I discovered on my way to the event...

    I had to pick up a friend at Union Station in downtown Los Angeles and then head over to the convention center not too far away for the Dwell on Design event. Since L.A. traffic is always unpredictable, I arrived about thirty minutes early and was wondering where I would wait. I drove maybe 100 yards past Union Station and found a large, modern looking structure with the word "bakery" on it. Perfect.

    Mayer of Los Angeles

    Not only did I have the best powder-sugar almond crousant, but I made an incredible discovery. Homeboy Industries is a non-profit organization, founded by a Jesuit priest Father Greg Boyle, which helps former gang members and recently incarcerated youth rebuild their future and their life. It is the largest gang intervention program in the country.

    It provides programs designed to meet multiple needs, such as counseling, tattoo removal and education. There are also four businesses that serve as job-training sites, such as the bakery where I stopped in that morning. The first thing I noticed when I walked in, besides the fact that it was packed, was the energy level... It was so positive and it was everywhere.

    Father Greg Boyle

    Through various charities and profits earned from the bakery and cafe (which just sold their first products to the Ralphs grocer chain), Father Greg Boyle provide and his organization are able to provide second chance opportunities, most importantly hope for change.

    For more information you can visit their website

    Images: DB, KCET, Homeboy Industries

  • Dwell Home Tour: Sander Architect's Green Houses

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     modern architecture

    One of the many beautiful projects in this year's Dwell on Design Home Tours line up was Sander Architect's Green House pair.  This set of townhouses on one single lot face each other over a drivable courtyard. They are very similar in appearance, yet not identical. Both buildings are wrapped in a skin of 1" x 2" aluminum edges that give it a very distinct appearance, but also act as a shade screen throughout the day.

    This pair is what Whitney would call a Hybrid House. "This is a new type of house that we have developed, using a prefabricated metal frame, skin and roof. We have achieved unprecedented economies by using prefabricated building (warehouse) fabricators to manufacture the most expensive parts of the houses at a fraction of the normal costs. We have also achieved unprecedented scale."

     modern window film

    The windows are wrapped in the same material used for bus graphics, which allows the home owners to see out, but no one to see in. What a brilliant idea! The custom pattern was designed to reflect the surrounding environment.

     graphic window screen

    They photographed a tree and blew up the image so each building looks as though the the trees are reflecting in the windows. This organic element brings a lot of character to these ultra modern homes.

     stone wall tile

    The front townhouse faces the street and features a quaint zen garden for a front yard. The concrete floors blend with the natural stone wall to create a very calm and peaceful area, filled with lots of natural sunlight. Simple organic wood furniture paired with these modern materials create a great balance in an industrial style space.

     Oxided metal hood

    What a stunning kitchen! The dark oak Italian kitchen cabinetry contrasts perfectly with the concrete floors, while the two-story oxidized metal panels dominate the space. 

     glass railing

    The second floor living room features a glass railing and glass walkway which overlooks the kitchen. Modern glass dining tables are a great choice for an open plan. From above the dining table basically disappears.  

    The soft industrial aesthetic of this modern dining table (below) will help you get this look in your home.

    Zuo Plume Clear Glass Modern Dining Table


     modern window

    The contemporary chandelier adds an elegant touch to the industrial space and brings the organic elements of nature indoors.

    If you love the chandelier, but aren't one of those lucky enough have these gorgeously high ceilings, a shorter capiz shell pendant would work beautifully in your space. 

    Dolce Capiz Shell 25" Wide Pendant Chandelier

     modern stairway

    Many innovative green materials were used throughout this entire project, including passive heating and cooling, natural daylighting, shade screens, bamboo flooring, green cabinetry, and recycled glass countertops.

    There were many amazing homes on the the Dwell Home Tour schedule and this is just one of them! I hope you had a chance to check them all out! But if not, there's always next year.....

    Images: Sander Architects

  • Flaunt Your Modern Hue in Our Pinterest Sweepstakes!

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    **This sweepstakes is now over. We announced the winners here.**

    We're having a pin party and you're invited! Visit our Pinterest page to enter our Sweepstakes for a chance to win one of three $150 shopping sprees!

    All you have to do is follow us on Pinterest, create your own "Modern Hue" board, tag your pins with #EuroStyleLighting and #ModernHue and then provide us with a link to your board. You have until July 8th to complete your board and provide us with your link. It's that simple... and that fun!

    Get the details and enter to win via our Euro Style Lighting Pinterest page.

    Read our complete sweepstakes rules.

     

    New to Pinterest and not sure what all the hype is about?... Pinterest is the best way to search the web and save your findings with an image and a link!

    Start by following other Pinterest users and "repin" whatever inspires you...

    Pinterest images

    Then, select which board you want to repin to (you can create the board as you pin)... 

    Pinterest repin process

    You're done!

    Pinterest process

    Now, you can re-visit your Pinterest page at any time to view all your boards and see all the amazing images you've pinned for yourself...

    Euro Style Lighting Pinterest board

    Now you have all the information you need to get started and enter our sweepstakes....!

  • Brent's Event Recap: Thinking Big at Dwell on Design 2012

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    Installation art at Dwell on Design

    My experience at the 2012 Dwell on Design show at the Los Angeles Convention Center last weekend can be best summed up by a well-worn cliche: what a difference a year makes. Whereas last year's Dwell on Design Show seemed retrenched under the specter of the euro zone crisis (and completely out of step with its tagline "Go Big. Find Design."), the 2012 incarnation was 100% about thinking big.

    Summarizing this year's event, Dwell Media President Michela O’Connor Abrams said, “Without exploration, there would be no innovation. This year at Dwell on Design, we’re exploring beyond the boundaries of expectation to get a first look at the people, products, and ideas that will redefine the very notion of modern.” 

    So what four things did I discover at Dwell on Design 2012?

    1. Modernism is Alive and Well

    If the exhibiting non-profits at the show are any indication, classic Modernism is very much the guiding light of Dwell.

    West Hollywood Library photo by Joyce Fickett

    I was delighted to discover Modcom, the Modern Committee of the Los Angeles Conservancy. Through research, outreach, and action, this group works to preserve L.A.'s post-war architectural treasures.

    Also in attendance were representatives of Palm Springs Modernism Week, the annual symposium of lectures, tours and exhibitions dedicated to Modernism's rich legacy in the Palm Springs area.  

    2. Outdoor Is In

    The outdoor "deck" of the show was larger this year. Plants, prefabs, pods, pots and more graced every corner of the space.

    Modern outdoor designs at Dwell on Design

    The show boasted two retrofitted Airstream campers, further underscoring Modernism's firm hold on the Dwell aesthetic.

    Retrofitted Airstream trailer

    Even the very notion of "outdoor" was expanded. As part of the show's onstage series, Artillery magazine's review editor Carrie Paterson presented "The Road Less Traveled: How Miniature Forests Will Humanize Long-Term Space Missions," in which she detailed the history of agriculture in space exploration, and offered the bonzai tree as a possible human companion in long-term human missions to space. 

    3. Big Design Fits in Small Spaces

    As expected, the latest in modular home design was on display at the event. All three participating designers utilized diminutive floorplans to the fullest, and I caught more than one attendee peering into cabinets, checking under beds, and above appliances in an attempt to visualize how they might downsize their lives into a small, elegant space. 

    The ecofabulous LivingHome was the event darling - it seemed like there was someone pouring juice, wine or champagne at almost every hour outside the space. At their $172 per square foot claim, the LivingHome is budget-fabulous.  

    ecofabulous LivingHome prefab home

    Connect Homes and Sustain Design didn't rival the ecofabulous LivingHome fanfare, but their designs equally inspired. Sustain Design's caliMini prefab packs a high aesthetic into the footprint of a flatbed truck:

    modern prefab design

    All in all, these homes felt a bit, well, mobile. I found it hard to resist the urge to knock on the walls to see how they held up, but seen in a broader context, these structures are quite a feat. Given only a few days of set up time, each of these designers erected and staged a livable home. Who am I to complain?

    4. We Live in a Material World

    My favorite part of the show was that which was perhaps least practical in the most direct sense: a number of sculptural installations were on view that explored the limits of material. As Cori mentioned in her recap of the show earlier this week, Oyler Wu's Screenplay installation utilized 45,000 feet of rope to create a textured wall. 

    Rope installation art at Dwell on Design 2012

    Student Bruce Guan from the Interior Architecture Department at Woodbury University constructed a fabulous curtain from paper airplanes (pictured below and in detail at the top of this post).

    Paper art installation

    Los Angeles based Timeline Wood showcased a line of distressed wood planks. These FSC certified, low VOC treated planks had the appearance of reclaimed wood. The owners, Shelby Keyser and Matt Stroud, perfected the "aging" techniques during stints as furniture restorers and artists.

    distressed wood for construction use

    As evidenced by the event as a whole, design's role in the building of a better future is more important than ever. Nowhere was this more obvious than at the motor court in front of the Convention Center, where Green Car Journal hosted a test drive program showcasing the latest in electric, hybrid and clean diesel cars. A year ago, the electric vehicles on display were concept cars. This time around however, I was able to test drive two production cars: the Coda and Ford Focus (available starting January 2013). 

    When it was time to head home however, I did the green cars one better: I jumped on my bicycle and rode home. Sure, nobody walks in L.A...but they do ride.

    Images: Modcom, Sustain Design

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