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modern living + innovative design + inspiring ideas

  • What's With All These Hanging Light Bulbs?

    Hanging Light Bulbs

    Image from Fast Co. Design

    You've undoubtedly been seeing hanging light bulbs everywhere lately. You've seen them as art (as in the Madison Park installation pictured above).

    They were at the Oscars...

    2014 Oscars Set Design

    Image from LATF USA

    At your local artisan coffee roaster...

    Modern Coffee House Lighting

    Image from Intelligentsia

    And even in a recent GMC commercial...

    GMC Commercial Set Design

    Image from iSpot

    The look is minimalist, utilitarian and endlessly customizable. But before you hire an electrician to build a custom cluster of light bulbs, we've got a few designs that you'll want to see.

    These exciting new additions to our selection of swag lamps plug directly into a single ceiling junction box, making them a simple way to replicate the popular design trend at home.

    From soft white bulbs...

    Swag Chandelier

    Europa Bronze 8 Light Swag Chandelier

    To vintage-inspired Edison bulbs...

    Edison Bulb Pendant

    Europa 8 Light Adjustable Bronze Swag Chandelier

    Simply install them like any ceiling light, and "swag" (drape) them to your heart's content. 

    Images: Fast Co. Design, LATF USA, Intelligentsia, iSpot

  • Romita Restaurant Design in Mexico City

    Restaurant Design

    Are you planning to travel anytime soon? If Mexico is on your list of places to visit, then you must stop in Mexico City for the architecture, design, nightlife... and food!

    Romita Comedor Restaurant in Mexico City, located in the heart of Colonia Roma, should be one of your foodie stops, and not just for the fabulous cuisine, but for the cool interior design

    Dining Room Design

    The building, protected by the INBA (Instituta Nacional de Bellas Artes), dates back to early 1900s, with a style inspired by grand railway stations.

    We love the large windows, high ceilings, vintage style dining furniture and checkered flooring. Romita Comedor is known for authentic Mexican cuisine, great cocktails and live entertainment by well-known DJs. We imagine that the black ceiling fans and cool pendant lighting help the parties go on into the early morning hours...

    Hanging Plants

    One of our favorite aspects of the design is the collection of hanging plants throughout the restaurant. The large windows make this beautiful greenery possible.

    Restaurant Bar Design

    How to get this dining style in your own home? Here's a start....

    Dining Furnishings

    1. Emerson Loft Ceiling Fan - 60" Barbeque Black

    2. Rio Brass with White Shade Robert Abbey Pendant Light

    3. Jamie Young Campaign Silver 30-Inch-H Folding Dining Table

    4. Sparrow Modern Brown Wood Set of 2 Dining Chairs

    5. Langdon Wood and Bronze Metal 42-Inch-H Barstool

    Images: Cool Hunting

  • Green Home: Face the Foliage

    Green Architecture

    Over here in California, we're in a drought. So, to ease our pain, we decided to read about homes that have an abundance of foliage.

    This green home was designed by architects Samyn and Partners for a family to use as both their home and workplace. It's located near Brussels and was completed in 2007.

    I only wish I could see the interior of the home styled with modern furniture and unique modern lighting, but I suppose I can use my imagination... 

    Design Plans

    At street level, the home features an entry hall, a family room and a kitchen. The living-room and the stairway are in the extension to the building. The second floor includes the master bedroom with its bathroom, as well as five children’s rooms and small bathrooms. 

    The vegetalised facade is composed of exotic plants chosen by the botanical artist Patrick Blanc.

    I must give credit to one of our ESL contributors for the title of this post... Justina Blakeney has a very cool series on her Instagram account called 'Face the Foliage' where she creates art with foliage.

    Images: Samyn and Partners

  • 10 Modern Wedding Gifts Under $100!

    Wedding Gifts

    Image from Indulgy

    Wedding season is here, and as much as we all love to celebrate with friends and family, many of us find it hard to seek out the perfect wedding gift at the right price. We're here to help!

    Here are ten beautiful gifts, all under $100!

    1. What's better than gifting the newlyweds with a fun way to start the day together?! This graphic mug set is a perfect start to their new life and their every day.

    2. Give them the opportunity to save their important day in this distinctive mother of pearl frame.

    3. They have to have something to put in their new mugs... This bold, black tea kettle is the perfect addition to their kitchen.

    4. As newlyweds, they'll want to entertain and celebrate even after the wedding. Gift them this modern wine rack to hold their wine.

    5. To pair with their red wines, they'll hopefully be making lots of caserole, so why not give them this modern white casserole serverware?!

    Modern Wedding Gifts

    6. The newlyweds need more than just things for the kitchen and entertaining, so why not provide them with stylish decor for their home? This contemporary wall clock is perfect.

    7. This crystal candle holder is sure to dress up any party they host, or just dinner for two.

    8. This modern cake stand isn't just for garden parties, they're also great for display.

    9. What would their new holidays together be without cooking the perfect turkey in this nonstick roaster.

    10. This large shiny bowl is perfect for holding fruit on a daily basis or chips for entertaining.

    Image: Indulgy

  • Tips For a Feng Shui Bedroom

    Bedroom Design

    Image from Apartment Therapy

    Whether you're on vacation or a busy work schedule, the bedroom should be somewhere calming and rejuvenating. Adopting some Feng Sui elements to your design will help create a perfect environment to help you relax at the end of the day and get ready for the start of a new one.

    Here's some Feng Sui tips we recommend.

    TIP # 1. No TV 

    The good feng shui energy in your bedroom is destroyed when TV's and exercise equipment  are present in your bedroom.

    Feng Shui Bedroom

    Image from Capital Building

    TIP # 2. Soft Colors

    Use soothing colors to achieve a good feng shui balance in your bedroom.

    TIP # 3. Bedroom Lighting

    It's good to have different levels of lighting in your bedroom, for different uses. So, you could try modern wall sconces paired with modern lamps. It's also good to have a dimmer switch to adjust the energy accordingly.

    Good lighting is very important, as light is our # 1 nutrient and one of the best sources of energy.

    Candles are also a good feng shui bedroom lighting, but be sure to buy candles with no toxins.

    Windows In Bedroom

    Image from Design Milk

    TIP # 4. Open Windows

    Windows are often a good quality air-purifier to keep the air fresh and full of oxygen. But be mindful of the quality of air in your bedroom. You cannot have good feng shui in your bedroom if the air you breathe in is stale and full of pollutants so you might want an air purifier if you live in urban areas.

    Please note that plants in the bedroom are not good feng shui, unless your bedroom is fairly large and the plants are located far from the bed.

    Have a wonderful weekend everyone!

    Images: Apartment TherapyCapital Building, Design Milk

July, 2014