Art Appreciation When You Least Expect It

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Art is everywhere and for everyone.  We saw this installation as we walked down the street one early morning in New York City.  My husband and I were with our two sons, we had just left the hotel and already the grumbling had started “how far are we going to have to walk? will this restaurant have pancakes? I don’t want pancakes….” And then we all stopped and stared at this wall.  It was eye catching and interesting.  The kids loved what Philip Mortillaro had done with keys.  Perhaps because keys are such a tangible and relatable object, the kids really appreciated that the artist had done something so cool with them.  It was a great way to start the morning, a little art appreciation warm up before we headed to the Guggenheim to see the Picasso Black and White exhibit.

 

High Point Market – Fall 2012

After an exhausting three days at the furniture market in High Point, NC, I am reviewing the photos I took of pieces I wanted to remember.  There are always a few I don’t remember why I took, but here is an edited version of what I thought was cool.  Please remember, I almost always am biased and review pieces in terms of what I would want in my house.
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No, I have not always dreamed of having a foosball table in my house.  I feel I have come around to understand the value of having certain activities to entertain the guys in the house.  This foosball table seemed more than tolerable, and even cool.  I love that the players are not little soccer dolls, but rather industrial chic pieces!
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Live edges were everywhere!  Beautifully finished tables, stools, benches, and consoles paired with metal or wood as a base were abundant.  This look isn’t anything new, but it’s a favorite of mine and I’m glad it’s not going anywhere.  These pieces feel solid and natural.
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A bench like a fallen tree.
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Oh, I adore just about anything with an acrylic accent, or even all acrylic.  Add some hide to the mix and you’ve got me.  This little stool could go anywhere.
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These pieces from Mr. Brown caught my eye right away!  Fabric lined drawers, what a fun surprise when you pull open the drawer!  A friend scoffed that they would be hard to clean, and I found it incredible that he had ever cleaned the interior of his drawers.  I’m sure a quick swipe with a vacuum would do the trick.  I love the cerused finish above, but the all upholstered version below was a bold move.  Unfortunately I would fear stains and wear and tear happening in no time, I’d go for the longevity of the wood finish.
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There was lots of rope everywhere but mostly in lights.  Rope chandeliers, rope covered table lamps, rope handles, and more.  The casual look of rope paired with high quality craftsmanship equaled unique luxury pieces.
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This bench was about to slink away when it caught my eye.  Those feet were enormous and quite solid.  I loved the way frame and charcoal finish.  If this were done in pink it would have been silly, but the neutral tones kept it dark and mysterious.  I could bring this pet home.IMG_2054
This is a lamp I would typically see in a whitewashed finish, but this beautiful subtle blue caught my eye and made it more interesting.  Very pretty.
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We’ve all seen these chairs and they add such awesome drama to a room.  This one with the frame showing on the back made it structural and interesting from all sides.  I could see the upholstery changed to a pop of color with a contrasting dark frame.
So that’s a quick roundup of a few of the things I saw at the fall market, always fun to see what’s new and what’s still going strong!

A First Brimfield Experience

I finally made it to Brimfield!  On the last day of this past end of summer Brimfield session, my friend and I drove out early and made a day of it.  It did occur to me that perhaps going on the last day was not the best way to get a good impression of all that can be at Brimfield.  In fact, as a first timer, it was quite ideal.  A few of the fields had already shut down, so that helped in making it more manageable.  “Is that your best price” really seemed to mean, “come on, it’s the last day, you don’t really want to pack that up and haul it back, right?”
We started off meandering down the isles next to our bargain central parking spot (another perk to visiting on the last day!)  It was a feast for the eyes, especially because we came with no agenda or wish list.  We started snapping pictures of all the items we were going to think about, and come back to buy if necessary.  Apparently that could never happen on the first few days of the market.  I’ve been told, if you think you want it, get it, because it won’t be there later.  Since I wasn’t in need of anything, my plan was to see everything first and then backtrack for the buys of the day.

Right away I realized I was probably going to need some andirons, and why not owls?
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And do you know what else you can find?
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Funhouse Mirrors!  My friend wisely suggested this would be perfect for a young girl’s room so they don’t take their reflection so seriously, get silly!
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Glass bottles wrapped in wicker!  I grew up with one of these in the house, I think my Mom got it from Greece, and here were tons of them!
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Glass balls used as net floats by Chinese fishermen.  I used to romantically think only the lucky beach stroller would come across one of these once in a lifetime, just as it washed ashore on a secluded beach.  (And a unicorn would be observing from the dunes.)  But not so, if you look closely in the background of the picture above, you can see sacks and sacks full of these imports, just waiting for antique seekers to snatch them up for indulgent decorative uses.  I still like them.
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I bought the chess lamps in the middle above.  Those I did buy right when I saw them.  Well, I walked a few feet away, and then went back to make the deal.  Even on the slow last day I couldn’t risk losing them!  They are extremely heavy and solid with great proportions and patina.  I hope I can use them somewhere!
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And then I was on a roll.  I loved this little stone and steel table and the cute stool with acrylic legs on wheels.  I did think about these for a while and went back to the dealer.  But first, I had my friend talk me through the bartering process because I really needed the prices to come down.  I’m a horrible bargainer, but I was able to mutter out “Is that your best price?” and then counter offer while throwing in another table with a total price for all three, hoping the dealer was too tired to do the math.  He seemed exhausted and annoyed, counter offered, deal, done.  I was giddy.
Here’s the third table.
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A Danish piece in great condition.  I love the clear wheels!
At that point we had to call it a day and pick up the pieces we had bought.  That proved a little bit difficult as we were like lab rats in a maze trying to remember what we were even seeking.  In the end, I did get andirons, but not the owls.  They had either been picked up by another lucky buyer or packed away as Brimfield had come to an end.

Autumn Stroll on the High Line

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We finally made it to the High Line on a beautiful Sunday morning!  It was gorgeous and relaxing.  I loved seeing the old railway trails weave through the gardens, or rather the other way around.  It was as if the plants were taking back their place in a case of
“I was here first!”
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IMG_0250And the use of chaise lounges along the sides just invites people to relax and settle into the space.  While it was crowded in some spots, never more than you would expect on a city sidewalk, at least you were elevated and framed by foliage.  The design of the concrete pavers seems to allow the plants to grow into the edges of the walkway in linear open cracks.  I hope I can get back here and check out the plant growth and view each season!
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Dreamless Nights

I recently went to NYC to check out a few things.  I stayed at a new hotel called The Dream.  It was fun and funky, a place to see and be seen, late at night it was quite a scene.  I always enjoy seeing how hotels, bars and restaurants are designed.  The Dream’s lounge area was cool; groupings of round tufted ottomans, benches and sofas upholstered in metallic fabric that gave off an iridescent glow in the dim light.  It was super comfortable to lounge on too, which I did one afternoon with my kids while we waited for some friends.  This was okay at 3 in the afternoon.  We returned one night, with kids in tow, to find the hotel transformed into “one of New York’s hottest nightspots” and if it wasn’t dead obvious we were staying at the hotel (kids in tow) I’m guessing we would have been denied access.

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I also checked out the hotel lounge bathroom for design surprises.  It was super silver and fairly unisex, with a wing of stalls for gentlemen and a wing of stalls for ladies, both met in the middle where there were round hand washing stations which reminded me of my high school bathroom, only shinier.  I can imagine a few awkward situations happening there.

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2011 ASID New England Design Competition Awards

I am thrilled to announce this year’s ASID NE Design Competition award winners.
Residential Kitchen, Honorable Mention: Christina Patton, CP Interiors
Residential Kitchen, First Place: Christina Oliver, Oliver Interiors
Residential Space, First Place: Molly McGinness Interior Design
Residential Whole House, Honorable Mention: Dana Keegan Interior Design
Residential Whole House, First Place: Kristen Rivoli Interior Design
Best In Show: Molly McGinness Interior Design    
The awards cocktail reception was hosted by K. Powers and Company which has a beautiful showroom in Needham, MA.  The presentation included photos of the winning submissions which is always great fun to see.
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Ofuro is the answer.

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I think a compact soaking tub might be the answer to my master bath dilemma.  I wasn’t even going to consider putting a bath in my own master bathroom.  I really am not a fan of huge jacuzzi type tubs, it seems excessive and wasteful on many levels.  However, I was thinking back to my time spent in Japan and wondered at how efficient our bathroom was.  The sink, shower and soaking bath were all in one small closet while the toilet was in another, all located off our mighty tiny foyer.  And that all seemed quite livable for two years.  I might try to incorporate this clean lined soaking tub into our master bath, leaving more room for the very important walk in closet!

New Studio?

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Can this oversized tool shed be my new design studio?  I’m not convinced, but I’m looking into it.  Right now it’s chock full of tools, a golf cart, beach stuff and many items that fall easily into the junk category. Stay tuned.

 

Vintage Elements, Great Pillows!

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On our exploration of Martha’s Vineyard artisans, we were introduced to Jo Maxwell of Vintage Elements.  She makes fabulous, one of a kind pillows from chenille, bark cloth and feed sacks from the 1930s – 50s.  The part I loved was that they are filled with a heavy organic cotton, to make just the kind of pillow I want to sink into.  Her studio was chock full of vintage fabrics of all colors and materials.  I wanted to dive in and explore the stashes of cottons and chenilles.  I held back.  I hope to return.

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4 Whistlers Way
Falmouth, Massachusetts 02536
United States
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