Archive for November, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

Bespoke Year-Round Ornament.

Ladies, how fantastic would this be above your next holiday gathering? I love it! Genuine pearls, gold-plated vintage beads and chain, and an authentic vintage Chanel silk scarf wrapped shade make this gold-plated three-armed chandelier glow with modern and regal opulence. I just might beat out a nice hanging swag of mistletoe.


Chanel Silk Scarf Chandelier, $9,200 |



Energizer Monkey Bars.

The Electric Slide article in this months Dwell magazine is a must read for those of us who are curious about new ways to give back to this pretty planet while educating integral age groups. How about starting a busy and interactive playground that produces power from the stomping and swinging of energetic kids? Well, looks like someone claims fame to the idea.


Click on image to see video of this illustrations' creation.


Click here to go to the article online or see it transcribed below…

“For something that’s meant to celebrate the pleasures of childhood, the playground sure has gotten old. The essential program—–swings, slides, monkey bars—–is as limited and predictable as the activities it’s designed to promote. Though a playground may divert or entertain, rarely does it engender the kinds of social interactions that can meaningfully teach. It’s true that even the most uninspiring variant will whip a kid into furious expenditures of energy, but the outcome is a small, if satisfying, harvest: a better appetite and a tighter night’s sleep.

All of this caused professor Alice Chun to ponder how a 16,000-square-foot vacant lot in Stuyvesant Town, the Manhattan residential development where she lives with her husband and young son, might be used to change all that. “There are merry-go-rounds in Africa and India that generate energy,” she notes. “Children play on them, and villages with no water or electricity are able to pump from wells and have light. If they’re doing it there, why can’t we do it here?” Consequently she put this playful challenge to the graduate students in the design-build studio she teaches at Columbia University.

The as-yet-unbuilt playground, which the students named Kids Climb-It, is an all-rubber, recycled, and recyclable environment featuring 18 tripods—–constructed from steel pipes enclosed in rubber balls—–with rope nets strung between them. As kids climb the nets, their motion activates generators in the tripods’ peaks, which produce energy that’s stored in underground batteries.

The net system—–with eight distinct zones including ramps, tunnels, and vines—–encourages children to use their imaginations to develop their own games. Some of the rubber balls on the tripods trigger lights, bells, and water misters across the entire landscape, and a time and energy stopwatch enables kids to calculate how much power their games can generate within a fixed time period. And because the netting zones have been designed to attract different age groups, Kids Climb-It also functions as a kind of neighborhood in miniature, teaching and encouraging children with varying skill sets, temperaments, and degrees of maturity how to interact with each other.

As a reimagining of the aesthetics of play, a more efficient use of public space, a producer of clean power, and a landscape that encourages young people to think independently, Kids Climb-It is more than simple recreation. It looks to be a model of what tomorrow’s playgrounds, and citizens, might very well be.”

Fir the Early Tree Hunters.

I love my green and blue Frazier Fir christmas tree. Every year, I search for only this variety of evergreen – 6 feet tall and perfect on all sides. I’ve found beautiful ones at Eastern Market, Measdows Farms, and the local Boy Scouts stand on Wilson Boulevard in Arlington, VA. I typically wait until after the first week of December in hopes that the freshness remains until the New Year. =) I know many of you run out on Black Friday and pick up your soon-to-be-dripping-with-tinsel-and-lights-christmas-tree from your local garden shop or charity road side stand. Good for you. But if you feel a little less excited to lug it home – sap, needles, and all – try to find your precious online at Green Valley Christmas Trees. They will personally hand select a fresh fir for you and deliver it to your door. Ring a ling a ling is all you need to wait for until the decorating frenzy begins. Thanks for the idea Daily Candy! Oh Christmas Tree Oh Christmas Tree!

Pixelated Perfection.

Yesterday, I gave an hours of my time to watch a ‘webinar’ related to trends in the use of color into 2011 (however, still a bit perplexed on how one is able to predict what the fashion for color outlook might be ). I came across work by Barcelona-born designer Christian Zuzunaga during the presentation as one artist who is using the entire color wheel with subjectivity. His work is based on abstraction and essence, where fabric and upholstery act as the perfect timeless medium. With technology a huge part of our every minute, these designs make sense. Christian uses pixelated prints to cover sofas, chairs, totes, and even scarfs as designed for the Tate Gallery. Want more color in your life? Perfect your palette here.

100% Silk scarf sold exclusively at Tate Gallery.

Collaboration with Christphe Delcourt.

Collaboration with Delcourt presented at for Maison de Objet.

Unique designed fabrics at Balmacz's new showroom in London.

2007 Collaboration with Moroso UK and Kvadrat.

2008 Collaboration with Moroso UK and Kvadrat.

Limited edition Shanghai fabric upholstering Sala dining chairs.

Pixelated wrapping paper collection printed in England using vegetable inks.

Abstract Arrf!

I love my German Shepherd Dog, as some of you might already know. So much so that someone very near and dear to me sent moi this image of an artists abstract collage. Not as cute as my Alpha but a recreation of those intense eyes and perky ears nonetheless. =)  WOOF!

Hand Caste.

Originally from Montana, designer Ty Best and his business partner, onetime banker Brad Rowley, have created a company 1,300 miles away in Chicago. The showroom of Caste is a handmade collection of furniture, art and accessories inspired by the natural landscapes that are rampant in the state of Montana. There is a huge emphasis on bleached and cerused wood grains – tied in with the white-oak lounge chair, the wengé bar cabinet, and pieces incorporating a combination of these attractive finishes. Add steel, leather, tree resin, mohair, and polished accents to create furniture and accessories that take on a sculptural quality. I have to say that I really like the contrast of textures and earthy tones we find in nature’s woodlands and mountains. Local Chicagoan (is that what you’re called?) Oprah Winfrey needs to Caste these guys as one of her favorite designers. I’m just sayin.
Showroom exterior of Caste.

Caste showroom front facade.

Detail of woven mohair sculpture

Creative displays of art and furniture.

Linear oval tables - I love the polished legs and the burnt walnut top.

Very cool double floor lamp. Very ingenious.

The contract of color and shape creates an overall effect and mood.

At some angles, its the Jetsons meet mountain man.

The handcrafted works are as fine quality as one can get

BHG and a Peel of a Bread.

Love me some bananas! Just stumbled upon this slideshow of banana bread recipes in the Better Homes & Gardens site. I love Banana Bread although I can’t remember when the last time I backed a loaf was… anyway, I’m planning to tackle one of these this coming weekend. Our Best Banana Bread Recipes.

Wine Glass on the Right. Cheers!

For those of you planning a super Thankgiving Day dinner with those who you want to give a Thank You shout out to, follow the lines in these two table setting setups from the Washington Post. Going informal? They got it. Need formality. Go for it. Just remember to mind your manners. =)


Fa La La La DC.

Get ready DC holiday lovers for Wash FM’s ring-a-ling-a-ling round-the-clock music in just 3 days! I am actually psyched. However, I have started zero holiday shopping and card writing – much unlike my best friend Carole in Houston who had finished all of it!!! Pffft. xo

Just a Thought.

"A person should design the way he makes a living, around how he wishes to make a life" — Charlie Byrd

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