Monday, February 8, 2016

Happenings at the Gift Show

These are some of my favorite chunky knit throws and pillows that can be found at Homelosophy

Walking the floor of the Javits Center for the New York Gift Show is always an eye opening experience.  Handmade, artisanal, crafted pieces, each with an integrity and irregular beauty that defines "made by hand" speaks to the beauty that lies in the imperfect.  There was much of that displayed in almost every category, literally from soup to nuts (they have a food area).  I always discover something I didn't know a client or I needed.

Alex Marshall Studios not only does beautiful hand made dinnerware, but monograms as well.  A good two-fer

Making things meaningful is Sasha Nicholas' motto.  I love that.  I have always been a fan of customization, and monograming always adds that extra touch.  It really makes something one's own!

Mr. Brown is doing just that by allowing customers to use fabrics of their choosing on this breakfront and captioning it, "Your cabinet, your muse" ~ you can personalize it any way you choose.

The floor cloths from Israel caught my eye because we talked about the encaustic tiles being a current trend.  Maybe this is a good compromise if you want something LESS permanent from Kiss that Frog.

Crystals, selenite, and all things mineral are still taking center stage with their natural, organic, nature made characteristics that help give a room soul

and politically correct or not ~ fur is fashionable

Items on everyone's 2016 trend list were well represented!

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Simon Pearce's Philanthropy is Personal

I spent the day at the New York Gift Show and saw a few themes happening which I will talk about in my next post, but this one caught my eye and pulled at my heartstrings.

I have always been a fan of the Simon Pearce brand.  They make stunningly simple (looking) hand blown glass and pottery tableware and have recently incorporated refined hand turned wooden pieces to their offerings.  They had a restaurant and store in the Brandywine Valley, not terribly far from me, and I loved going there to watch them blow glass and enjoy a rustic meal in their mill turned restaurant.  Sadly that closed, but if you happen to find yourself in Vermont...

It's a family owned and operated company that cares deeply about the things we call care about: sustainability, health, simple beauty, their kids.  Simon and Pia's son Kevin Pearce was a professional snow boarder training for the Olympics in 2009 when he had a terrible accident that left him with a permanent brain injury.  I remember this story and followed Kevin's progress.  Having kids participating in the sport and so close in age to Kevin made it feel like it hit a little too close to home.  I am glad to see he is doing well, but when something like this happens, awareness needs to be brought to the event so we can educate people and hope to prevent future accidents of this nature.

By buying a beautiful tea light votive with the proceeds going to the Love Your Brain Foundation you are helping support education, research and improving the quality of life for those whose lives have been affected.  I will also be after my son even harder than I have been in the past to wear a helmet when he skis and boards!

These are products I would buy anyway, so the mere fact that I am now also giving back is a win/win!

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

A Celebration of Martedì Grasso

I am in a celebratory mood!  I understand Mardi Gras is coming up.  I never thought to celebrate it before.  It's not part of my heritage, BUT the colors, the glitter, the beads, the fun!  And I do love 17th and 18th century Italian history!  What's not to love? 

The holiday goes back thousands of years.  There is some debate as to its true beginnings.  Perhaps it started sometime around when Christianity arrived in Rome.  Then it showed up about 1094 in Italy, and the Catholic form of celebrating spread quickly throughout the world.  We give credit to the French for taking it to another level.

While in Venice I only wanted to don one of the magnificent le masques and "make believe."  Purple, green and gold are the colors synonymous with Mardi Gras.  Each also happens to be great to use as the predominant color in an interior because they signify regality, power, faith and justice.

Brian McCarthy

William Eubanks

Mardi gras literally means Fat Tuesday.  It denotes the last day of debauchery before Lent in the Catholic religion.  When the tradition showed up in the French quarter of New Orleans it was celebrated with lavish balls which gave way almost 100 years later into street processions with floats and masked carnivals.  This is now serious business and is not all about giant heads and exposed breasts.   Counter intuitively, it's actually about slowing down, being with family, and enjoying the revelry.

Robert Passel

Celebration or no celebration, if we take a page out of Mardi Gras inspired decorating, we are sure to show our true colors in the way we live inside and out.

*Laissez les bons temps rouler!

* French for Let the Good Times Roll

all photos not marked:pinterest