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Real Simple: Design on a Dime

I was invited to the Real Simple Design on a Dime event held in New York last night but couldn’t make it. Now I wish I had. Thom was there! Thom! My hero.

James Huniford, Designer, Sills Huniford; Kristin van Ogtrop, Managing Editor, Real Simple;
Charles King; Founder; Maggie Gyllenhaal, actress; Thom Filica, designer, Thom Filicia.

This is going to sound totally braggy, but just over the past few month’s I could have mingled with Orla Kiely, attended a taping of the Martha Stewart show, met Amy Butler, Nathalie L?t?, and the crew over at Domino magazine just to name a few. But I feel shy about showing up at these events alone. And last night I could have swapped stories with THE Thom Felicia over at Design on a Dime. Had I known he would be in attendance — I most certainly would have been there. Serves me right for not reading the invitation a little more carefully!

Real Simple, along with co-chairs Maggie Gyllenhaal, designer James Huniford and Real Simple’s managing editor Kristin van Ogtrop hosted Design on a Dime to benefit Housing Works. They are the nation’s largest community-based AIDS-service organization. During the event, thirty designers ? including Thom Filicia, Sills Huniford, Jamie Drake, and Charlotte Moss created room vignettes that people were able to purchase from at 60-80% off the retail price. All proceeds benefited Housing Works. Here are some of the rooms. What do you think? There’s a lot of artistic expression here. Click on each image to enlarge.

Designed by: Thom Filicia
Soft, casual, symmetrical. Maybe a little too beige? But I would gladly take tea in this room. But IKEA wouldn’t approve.

Designed by: Ernest De La Torre
A little too much patriotism for me here.

Designed by: NathanEgan Interiors.
I’m not sure I know how to feel about this room.

Designed by: Sills Huniford.
What’s on those fish lamp shades anyway?

Designed by: Jamie Drake
Hmm. Gold hands, green and lilac?

What do you think of some of these rooms? Do you have a favorite? I like Thom’s best. I think it must be hard when you’re a designer with work constantly in the public eye, must be a lot of pressure to perform, be innovative, and still stick to your own vision.

(Images by Dimitrios Kambouris/WireImage)

Posted in events + markets, shopping, travel on May 09, 2008

Have a Fun Weekend!

I’d like to wish everyone a fun and relaxing weekend, but before I sign off for the day, here are some fun links along with my weekly round up of events taking place this weekend sent in from readers. If you have events to include here each week, please email decor8blog AT yahoo.com, subject EVENTS, and I’ll certainly consider it. :)

Some of my current Flickr faves, link to them by going here and then
click on the image you’d like to see in full view.

Check out Susan Mentrak’s blog and her lovely new postcards. Nice!

{News Board/Events}

  • Boston: Visit the Somerville Open Studios May 3-4 from Noon until 6 p.m. to see (and purchase!) the works of over 300 artists.
  • Boston: Mid Century Modern addicts won’t want to miss this. Machine Age kicks off their huge sale today until May 11. If you want the best selection I advise heading over this weekend.
  • Brooklyn: Rare Device is closing up shop so head over for their mega sale this weekend, click here for store hours and directions.
  • Raleigh – The Handmade Market kicks off this weekend from 11-5 on Saturday, May 3rd. Details here.
  • Los Angeles: Henry Road Grand Opening Celebration all weekend long in Studio City and a 20% online discount for the rest of us. Code: STORE.
  • Los Angeles: Pam Anderson hosts her very estate sale in Malibu this weekend selling a house full of Shabby Chic stuff. Details here. Thanks, Leah for the tip!
  • San Mateo: The Maker Fair kicks off, Victoria blogs about it here. Event details here.
  • San Francisco: Heath Ceramics sale and auction May 3-4 (Sat. 10-6, Sun 10-5). Details here.
  • Artist Kelly Rae Roberts has a book due to release, Taking Flight: Inspiration + Techniques to Give Your Creative Spirit Wings. Congrats, Kelly! Pre-order details here.
  • New Lotta Jansdotter products on her website, don’t miss if you’re a Lotta fan!
  • Cape Weekend has a new online store! Yay!
  • How can you not love these new teacups from Ambrosia Porcelain?
  • I’m loving the Plane Jane Project lately.
  • I can’t stop looking at We Heart It. Gosh what a fantastic resource for all things art and design. It’s a dangerous site, you’ll be hooked for hours.
  • Progeny is a store to check out, adorable aprons + things for the modern girl!
  • A new alt-country style and design webzine from Urban Prairie?s Chris Brown titled ?REFUELED? will be released and available for FREE download on Monday, May 12th. ?I have felt for a long time that there should be a alternative magazine in the country arena.? said Chris, ?I?want to continue to blur the lines with country – continue to inspire a younger generation.? Each issue will feature collectors, shows, designers, decor, style and?music.
  • Sub-Studio Design interviews Second Line Frames who salvages wood siding from damaged Hurricane Katrina houses and turns them into picture frames, 10% of their sales go to The Katrina Foundation for Recovery.
  • DIY Project: Paper Wrapped Soap from Creature Comforts.
  • If you’re new to collecting original works of art and would like some tips, please refer to my article Art Collecting: How To Get Started posted today over at Real Simple.

The work of Susan Homer via Art Candy.

… And don’t forget the Rock Scissor Paper decor8 discount: 25% off everything on their website, including their personalized stationery, until May 11th. Enter code: DECOR8.

{updates: Vol.25 Modern Art is offering decor8 readers a 20% off discount if you enter code DECOR8, valid until May 8th. She has some GREAT work over at Etsy…}

Have a terrific weekend!

(images linked to sources above)

Posted in events + markets on May 02, 2008

Flea Marketing: Plan Your Attack

With the weekend ahead I’m certain that some of you are planning to hit a few flea markets. Time to plan your attack! I’m quite pleased that it’s about time for my annual trip to the Brimfield Flea Market May 13 – 18 in Brimfield, MA. I found my handmade guide to Brimfield from ’07, it’s this system I create and follow each year because it keeps me on track since this is one gigantic show. I need to get started on the ’08 version for next month’s visit.

Why do I bother? At one time, I would attend huge fleas without a game plan and always purchased things I didn’t need, that didn’t work in my home (size, color, etc.), or none of the above — I left empty handed because I felt overwhelmed with options so I didn’t buy a single thing. Then I got smart and started making these little guides for myself so I could chart my course. Here’s what I do:

Pack supplies: I carry in a large tote some sunscreen, bottled water, a snack bar, almonds, glasses, a hat, my guide, and a smaller zippered pouch (shown above) that holds scissors, pens, pencils, a tiny notebook, a few of my business cards, a few spare ziploc bags (for storing parts that may come with a piece, like screws), measuring tape, fabric swatches I’m looking to match, and paint swatches.) In my car, I have rope and a few screwdrivers just in case. I also bring with me measurements of current spaces I’m looking to fill. Let’s say I need a dresser and I have a very specific place for it. I will measure the space in my home and note it so when I find something I want at the flea market, I can measure it to see if it will fit.

Make a binder: Grab a bunch of clear page inserts and instead of putting them in a binder, tie them together with ribbon (make knots). I do this because it’s much lighter to carry around in my tote and I can roll it up if I need to. In it, I carry fabric swatches, paint swatches, floor plans, measurements, clippings from magazines of things I’m looking for, etc. All of this keeps my EYE ON THE BALL. I don’t get overwhelmed or confused. I know the exact red I’m looking for, or the pattern I’m trying to find, etc. There’s no guess work. I make purchases that I’m confident in thanks to my handy guide.

Chart your course. I download the various maps from the Brimfield website and highlight the vendors that I want to visit, writing down their name, booth number, and quick notes (what they sell, contact name, etc.). I number them in order of importance so I’m sure not to miss the vendors that I really want to see. You can use their database online to search for vendors that carry what you’re looking for. Let’s say you’re into McCoy. Click here, search for McCoy under Items Exhibited, click Search and you’ll see that two vendors carry McCoy items along with their location. Look for them on your map and highlight their booths so once you arrive, you know where to look first. I also note the time that the show begins, as the flea market contains several fields each with their own opening times.

Tip: Don’t forget a rolling cart! I regret not bringing one last year! You can buy them at a few locations on the fairgrounds for around $40 but they sell out quite fast so bring your own if you can.

Have fun at the fleas this Spring/Summer! Oh and if you’re looking for some flea market inspiration, the Raised in Cotton blog and the Junk Market Girls website are great places to start. And here’s a handy guide I wrote on How To Find Flea Markets and Indie Craft Fairs.

(images from holly becker for decor8)

Posted in diy, events + markets on April 25, 2008

Modern Economy Sale {San Francisco}

Up for a great sale? If you happen to be in or around San Francisco this weekend you won’t want to miss the annual Modern Economy sale, perfect for design addicts on a budget! Event founder and host Meg Mateo Ilasco, designer and author of “Craft Inc.: Turn Your Creative Hobby into a Business“, will share with the public items from your favorite designers marked down from 25% – 75% off retail.

A few participating designers include: Xenia Taler,
Mateo Ilasco, Sharon Spain, and Dermond Peterson.

Details: Saturday, April 12, 2008 in San Francisco at the Fort Mason Center, Bldg. A Conference Center from 10:30AM – 3PM. Details here.

{psst} Meg was spotlighted in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal in the article Crafty Hobbyists Create New Careers Using the Web. It’s a quick bite featuring 4 basics that every craftster should know before setting up shop: sticking to your vision, locating your core audience, using alternative publicity (like blogs!), and charging a fair price. You may want to check that out. Article written by WSJ writer Amy Palanjian.

Thanks Meg for writing in, have a fun weekend and lots of success to you!

(images from modern economy)

Posted in events + markets, reader discounts, shopping, travel on April 09, 2008

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