Monthly Archives

April 2007

Objects, Rooms

Mibo’s Online Store – Now Open!

April 12, 2007

Just in for Mibo fans living in the UK…You can now shop Mibo online via their website for wallpaper, tea towels, ceramics, lamps, totes, and pillows.

Mibo's Online Store - Now Open!
For the rest of us, we’ll need to check their stocklists to see where they’re offered in our local hood. Design Public carries their wares online here in the states… Here’s a glimpse of a few of their things in case you’ve not heard of them already. And because I like to show products in an actual space (vs. floating solo here online), here’s a few magazine shots and a view of their pendant living in a dining room.

Mibo's Online Store - Now Open!
Mibo's Online Store - Now Open! Mibo shade, far left. Love the base they put it on, very nice mix of modern meets traditional.

Mibo's Online Store - Now Open!The stylish Mibo pendant works well with Danish modern furnishings via Design Public online.

Mibo's Online Store - Now Open! Two Mibo pillows, can you guess which ones?

Thanks for the headsup, Madeline!

(images from mibo and design public)






Rooms

Thomas Paul Collection at See Jane Work

April 11, 2007

Isn’t this Thomas Paul desk tray perfect for $8? You know your work space could use a little color. So get your dose of happy hues from the Thomas Paul collection right here at See Jane Work.

Thomas Paul Collection at See Jane Work
You can also find a ton of other Thomas goodies there, as his brand new collection just hit stores. Great bargain finds for your desk and the colors are just perfect for Spring.

Thomas Paul Collection at See Jane WorkAnd don’t miss Thomas Paul Collection at See Jane Work
(images from see jane work)






Trends

Giraffes As a Design Motif

April 11, 2007

Zebra patterns were discussed here recently, so I thought we’d explore the Giraffe a bit today. When I thought of them as a motif years ago, I pictured the straight-off-the-Serengeti living rooms of the 80’s, decorated with Africian masks, hide throws galore, and lifesize giraffes carved from wood, in deep reddish tones (like this). Some people still dig safari style and they have every right to enjoy it, but I was never a fan of the look. I’m just not big on themed rooms as a rule, and cringe at the thought of all those themed kitchens of the past complete with wallpaper borders, usually sporting a rooster or a hen. So when I think of bringing animals into a space, whether it’s a cute owl or a graceful giraffe, less is really more. True, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and we all have our collections, but a word of caution here: avoid the dreaded theme park decor because it can go from sleek to cheap the more you pile it on.

Giraffes As a Design MotifOutside of the Serengeti, giraffes are a constant trend for the nursery, mostly in yellow or orange… And I dare to break my own rules here and say that for baby, you can go with a little theme if you wish, but again, proceed with caution. You want to make sure to keep that baby of yours happy, and this may sound snobby, but you also want the room to fit your home. I’ve been in places that had these ultra swank interiors, and immediately upon stepping into the nursery, you question what they were smoking when they designed the nursery.

As motifs go, you have the owls, turtles, trees, you name it — they’re all center stage at the moment. Even the little koi has his day. But what about the giraffe? Should this leggy beast be limited only to the safari look or a nursery? Or can we bring him out into the living room, dining area, even the kitchen? When I think of adding a little giraffe action to my home, I picture lighter, brighter colors, vintage wallpaper silhouettes, a playful pillow, and Jonathan Adler and his amazing lamp. Oh that lamp, what a charmer he is. Let’s now look at it inside the home of a stylish twentysomething designer. Oh, Lena? Where are you?

Giraffes As a Design MotifAh, here she is. Textile designer and illustrator Lena Corwin, successfully incorporates the giraffe lamp from Jonathan Adler into her largely mid-century modern flat in Brooklyn. Very grown up, this doesn’t read ‘safari’ or ‘nursery’ at all. It reads hip and fun.

I love Lena’s space, but that lamp adds an extra spark that completes the room for me. It’s a bit of a quirky, unexpected touch that tells us that Lena has personality, she’s a bit playful, doesn’t take design too seriously, but also has exquisite taste to be able to mingle a giraffe lamp into a room with tree wallpaper, contemporary art, and mid century furnishings. But enough gushing about Lena. We don’t want to make her uncomfortable. :)

Giraffes As a Design MotifOkay, maybe one more gush. Lena designed a travel plate with a giraffe on it that shows how well one can use this animal in an adult space. Unfortunately though, we don’t see enough of the giraffe in adult rooms, and I think it’s a shame because we’re limiting this beautiful animal with the silhouette of a super model. And when we see the giraffe pattern used in decor or fashion, it’s always in either deep brown and white or black and white.

Please designers of the world, let’s allow the giraffe to mature a bit, while keeping him modern and playful. Let’s show his pattern in chartreuse against a pale blue background for textiles, I’m thinking of this pattern from Judy Ross, only with a close-up view of the giraffe hide. Let’s bring that Adler lamp into an adult space a little more, and for fashion, let’s see the giraffe pattern in hot pink against white, turquoise, lime, for handbags, dresses, and the interior lining of luggage. C’mon — let’s turn up the dial and see what fun can result.

Giraffes As a Design MotifGiraffes As a Design MotifGiraffes As a Design Motif
Joy by Mel Lim wrote to me last week about her newly expanded line of paper products that have actually grown into a collection of gift wrap, children’s clothing, t-shirts, and pillows that I’m 100% in love with. Joy turned things up by using her imagination, seeing this leggy beast in a different way. She enjoys incorporating fish, ducks, and our tall friend in her designs, and I enjoy seeing it. Immensely.

Giraffes As a Design MotifOf course, seeing the giraffe on paper is never a bad thing. Especially when done right, like these Sweet cards from Elsewares, the personalized stationery, journal, and enclosure cards from Rock Scissor Paper, and cards from Five Fold Ink and Mini and Emma.

Giraffes As a Design MotifNext, you have these stretch canvas prints by Avalisa, again, more for the kids than the grown ups, but it’s still pretty cute and I love all the colors that it’s available in.

Giraffes As a Design Motif
How cute is this mini print from Repro Depot shown in two colorways, giraffe mania! I can’t see this working as pillows or curtains (eek!), well except again, in a child’s room, but it is a terrific little print.

Giraffes As a Design MotifTory Burch has giraffe bags in her latest collection (not shown), but these box totes from Neimans’ are adorable. I’d put magazines in them and tote them around my house. This $4 giraffe business card holder, handmade by Etsy seller Mirkah is super cute for your handbag, I like the lemon yellow with the tiny white grapics.

Giraffes As a Design MotifCute dress (imagine this print somewhere in the home, wow!), pillow, little juma, and glasses from Anthropologie. I really can’t take my eyes off of that dress. The print is exactly what I’m picturing when I think of a more modern take on the giraffe.

Giraffes As a Design MotifAnd from Etsy: A very funky patchwork toy from While She Naps, a Veronica Press wood book, Maxine Dear tote, and an Okins mid century plush.

Giraffes As a Design Motif
Of course, it’s back to the kiddies again with a slew of softies, but they are a bit hard to resist… Even for a grown up space. Dwell Baby pillows from Giggle are super cute (and huge) and another plush from Zid Zid Kids with a Moroccan edge.

Giraffes As a Design Motif
Wallpaper giraffe silhouettes, available in a gadzillion patterns from Inke, really appeal to me. But I don’t know if I’d use animal silhouettes like this in my childless abode, on a wall. Although strangly enough, I can see it in a kitchen somehow. Don’t ask me, I just can. But of course, I have a very modern, white and light blue interior in mind, a space that reads very contemporary and cool. In the right pattern, this giraffe may rock it behind a bistro table with this capri genie pendant.

Giraffes As a Design Motif
I think these Inke patterns would work in an adult space, they feel a bit more grown and polished to me.

More giraffe love (not shown): Here’s a giraffe lamp from Illums Bolighus, retro badges from Fluffington, and coasters from Kate Black.

Are you a fan of the giraffa camelopardalis? Do you have any in the home? What are your thoughts, hot or not?






Arts + Crafts

Frazier & Wing *New* Website

April 10, 2007

I featured Heather’s work here last year, so when she emailed me today to announce the launch of her new website, Frazier & Wing, I was over the moon. I’ve been a fan of her mobiles for months now, I love absolutely everything about them – each delicious disk tells a story…

Frazier & Wing *New* WebsiteFrazier & Wing *New* WebsiteIt’s a somewhat modern take on this 3 tier capiz shell mobile from the 70’s (via eBay), don’t you think?

Frazier & Wing *New* WebsiteAnd Miss Frazier & Wing doesn’t stop with mobiles, she has funky canvas pillows too. So graphic and great colors. Heather, thanks a million for tuning us into your new website!

Frazier & Wing *New* Website
(images from frazier & wing)






Stationery

Darling Shoppe

April 10, 2007

Wouldn’t it be nice if you found a card from the Darling Shoppe in the mail today, with a note inside from someone you love? Never forget the power of a kind gesture, a little thought to show your appreciation, that handwritten note.

Darling Shoppe
In the age of email, it’s rare that anything arrives handwritten anymore, which is why my recent mail surprises from Darling ShoppeDarling Shoppe “Thanks for your support”, even cuter with the image of a pink bra and “I wish you well”, so fitting with a watercolor dandelion and a few detached seedlings going off on their journey.

Darling Shoppe“Hoo Hoo Hoo Loves You”, we love owls, we love trees, we love eachother, could the card be bursting with anymore charm?

(images from the darling shoppe)






uncategorized

Victoria on Design*Sponge!

April 10, 2007

I’m so excited that one of favorite bloggers, Victoria from SFGirlByBay, will be a guest blogging at Design*Sponge for the next two weeks. I know where I’ll be tuning in on a daily basis!

Victoria on Design*Sponge! Victoria’s beautiful city view from her apartment in San Francisco, CA.

Today, Victoria has some great thoughts on shopping IKEA, which is actually a great topic to explore because here in the states, we tend to look at IKEA differently than my friends in Europe, or even in Montreal, look at it. I remember in 1999, before they were even in this part of the country, I’d shop them in Germany and bring things home with me on the plane. My friend Irmtraud and I would spend hours inside the giant blue box with tiny pencil and pad in hand, and she’d bring home all these goodies to mix in with her big ticket items and travel finds (she’s a major globetrekker), pulling everything together for a look that was no less than gorgeous.

There’s absolutely nothing wrong with spending $2,000 on a sofa that you adore, then filling the space with inexpensive, stylish finds – from IKEA, eBay, flea markets (I attend Brimfield each year – it’s coming up again in a few weeks), and thrift stores. I’ve been a fan of flea markets since I was a little girl, it was what our family did on the weekends before packing up the car and heading off to the beach or the state park. I remember looking at all my found treasures in the backseat of our family car, excitedly pulling them from my cloth bag with the big Strawberry Shortcake on it.

Victoria on Design*Sponge! Victoria’s style is eclectic and we love her for it!

Point is, not everything has to arrive brand spankin’ new from a high end design store to look good. This is something that Victoria talks about on her own blog all the time, and that she’ll be speaking more in depth on over at Design*Sponge for the next few weeks, so hop on over there and tune in! :) Yay!

(images from victoria)






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