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nama rococo


i'm in love. with a wallpaper company. i thought i'd seen the best of the best in wallpaper but thanks to corbett at variegated i've discovered a fantastic new designer, karen combs of nama rococo. after studying and traveling all over the world, karen came back to work and live in north adams, massachusetts. inspired by a chinese scroll painting she saw at the metropolitan karen learned wallpaper design from the best in the business and in 2004, she rolled out her first line of wallpaper. since then karen has been creating stunning, truly unique wallpaper designs from her studio in western massachusetts. after so many over the top, super-graphic designs that seem to have saturated the wallcovering market lately, it was lovely to see something slightly different with a geometric, but handmade feel to it. it's as if a really creative person with a great sense of color and line broke into your home and painted a gorgeous mural all over the wall. and if i had the money, i'd pay karen to come "paint" her beautiful murals all over my home. karen's work is just to beautiful and too unique not to be checked out, so click here and see for yourself. lovely, lovely work, karen! [thanks corbett!]

[ac and i are hopping a plane to chicago. be back monday. have a great weekend!]





good on paper podcast

lisa wong jackson by lisa lefkowitz (http://www.lisalefkowitz.com/lefkowitz_flash.html)

it's not quite friday but i'm out of town for the chicago idsa conference this weekend so i'm posting a bit early this week (i'm speaking on sat. morning if you want to come by!). today i was lucky enough to steal a few minutes of lisa wong jackson's time- the designer behind good on paper design and pixel and floyd cards. lisa had all sorts of interesting comments on being a self-taught designer, dealing with demanding brides and having her own wedding in martha stewart's wedding magazine. so [click here] to to listen to the good on paper podcast. lisa manages to run a successful business and still hold down a day job so i think she has an interesting perspective on the design industy- so, enjoy the show! [the photo above of lisa at her gorgeous wedding was taken by photographer lisa lefkowitz. she does really lovely work as well]

[the newsletter will launch on monday. so sorry for the delay. my coder had a crisis so we're a bit delayed. but we will be done in time to send out all the extra newsletter goodies on monday, promise!]

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chitown button

ac and i are off to chicago today for the idsa conference. i'll be speaking bright and early on saturday morning so we have to run and hop a plane. i'll be gone on friday but will try to squeak a few good garden finds in on sunday. so, enjoy your weekend and if you're in chicago, be sure to come to the d*s meetup on saturday! [note: the location changed, so if you're coming make sure you come to the motel bar, not the tasting room!] see you monday!

blueprint grade?


well, i grabbed myself a copy of blueprint yesterday and i thought it might be fun to see what those of you who've read it think. my 2 minute snap opinion? i worry it's trying to be too many things at once: martha stewart magazine, real simple, lucky and domino all rolled into one. it hits the high points of all 4 mags, but lacks the depth of each publication. i guess i didn't realize it was trying to be an all around "lifestyle" mag instead of something a bit more home centric, but my first impression was "i'll give it one more issue but probably not much more if it doesn't grab me". there were gorgeous shoe spreads mixed in with makeup stories and it just felt a little spread thin for my taste. i guess i've gotten spoiled and like my mags to be a bit more focused than that. what i'd love to see more of though is the classic martha project feature: how to reno a cabinet, how to redo your window garden, those sorts of things. there are a few of those and i think that's a fun direction in which to move, but so far, i was a little underwhelmed. i'd say it's a B, B- but probably only because i expected a big old A+. but hey, that's just my 2 cents. you guys? (i'll be out after 3 so all comments after that will appear when i get to chicago and get back in front of the laptop). click here for more info on blueprint.



BKLYN DESIGNS contest winners!


i spent the better part of the last two days sifting through the beautiful photographs entered in the d*s/BKLYN DESIGNS photo contest. you guys are some serious shots! it was incredibly difficult to narrow these down (i looked through at least 400 photos) but here are the top three winners. thanks so much to everyone who entered- your photographs were beautiful and much appreciated. here's to our winners and everyone who took the time to enter! so, without further adieu:

first place goes to: stephanie goralnick! stephanie's beautiful nighttime shot of greenpoint blew me away. not to mention it was hard not to choose second and third place from her other photos. she's quite the photog. great work, stephanie! click here to see what you'll be winning!


second place goes to: robert guskind! robert's artful shot of the cherry bomb tattoo parlor in brooklyn was a work in bold colors and contrasts. i love the way the yello, green and red work with eachother. great work, robert! click here to see what you'll be winning!


third place goes to: jenene chesbrough! jenene's somber "float on" photo was her homage winter in brooklyn and immediately took me back to cold days spent running between destinations and wondering if spring would ever come. great work, jenene! click here to see what you'll be winning!


a big big thanks to all our sponsors and BKLYN DESIGNS. be sure to check out what's new in my favorite borough's design scene by heading to the show on may 12-14 in dumbo brooklyn. thanks again to everyone who entered!


pratt design stars

sergio pratt main pic

i peeked in on pratt's industrial design student preview monday night and came home feeling extremely inspired and overwhelmingly optimistic about the future of design. for me, pratt has always been one of the meccas for design. churning out some of the great designers of this generation, pratt is always a great place to catch a glimpse into the future of product and furniture design. last night six designers in particular stood out to me, so [click here] for the full review- their work is really great and definitely worth checking out.


small factory design


brooklyn is constantly churning out great designers and i wanted to highlight another furniture designer making waves in the scene. small factory design's curt meissner graduated from pratt with an ID degree and now designs custom furniture for clients from his brooklyn studio. these latest pieces, the pandabox collection, are made almost entirely of eco-friendly materials. curt used bamboo plywood, eco-intelligent© fabric (produced in a no-waste closed loop manufacturing process), re-purposed padding made of shredded denim (blue jeans), doors made of a plastic similar to bakelite that uses recycled paper, uncoated aluminum legs and shelves, and of course, a natural wax finish. he also designed the pieces to be readily disassembled with a nod to future recycling and re-use. these pieces above and below (the little twin cub and the big twin cub) are perfect for storing all of your audio visual needs, or providing some extra storage and seating where you need it. as part of a collaboration with brooklyn's swigg design, small factory produced these pieces with designer stephanie wenzel and combined curt's clean industrial look with stephanie's playful modern textiles. you can find more information on small factory design right here and stephanie's swigg designs right here. enjoy! [thanks, curt!]



in the mix *


you can never have enough fun graphically inspired tableware. this "in the mix" series from rios clementi hale studios (not neutral) is available in a number of styles starting at $12. click here for more info.


hidden art shop [part deux]


wanted to throw in a few extra hidden art pieces that were of note: a great everyday mug, cups on a slant, a fancied up egg cup, some gorgeous nubby pillows and some fun coasters decorated with photos of vintage plates. click here for the full shabang from hidden art. [again, intl shipping charge applies]





hidden art shop [part one]


the hidden art online shop has too many great design finds to pass up. keep in mind the prices don't include intl shipping, so if anything catches your eye be sure to consider the fees. i've ordered a number of things from europe and have been glad i did every time. you can often find unique pieces and if they make you happy, a shipping fee is sometimes a small price to pay. back to hidden art- i was realy impressed with their lighting collection- a series of wall, hanging and table lamps that express that trademark unique, almost handmade feel that comes with a lot of hidden art designs. i was smitten with the lamps above and below but you can browse (and shop) the entire collection right here. enjoy!




this is macro


i'm listening to kexp this morning and going through this great big packet of milan designers that kristina at 3lc sent me (thanks, kristina!). it's packed full of great up and coming designers that showcased with hidden art uk this year, so i wanted to talk about a few of these. first up is this is macro, a british design studio run by patrick bek and oliver fowles- their latest collections focus on two major themes: accordion style folding pieces that start flat and expand to create seating or lighting. the second theme is water-jet cut polyethelene foam used in a wide arrange of seating options. i love the fold out pieces because i think they're such a fun way to reimagine traditionally solid objects like chairs and lamps. comfort may be an issue, but the fold out stool certainly looks lovely. if folding pieces aren't for you, try this is macro's water-jet cut pieces- they have a nice tetris feel to them with clean cut edges and an almost block-like quality to them. you can click here for more info. [thanks 3lc!]

[stay tuned today for the winners of the brooklyn designs contest and coverage of the pratt id student show]




lisa stickley london


during my interview with mav at port2port she mentioned the work of british designer, lisa stickley. based in london, lisa creates beautiful textiles for tablecloths, napkins, cushions, place mats, tea towels, wash bags, shoe bags, aprons and chair covers used in her 8 signature collections. a little bit vintage and a little bit modern, lisa's work is that perfect blend of old and new that makes you want to clean house and redecorate with that worn in, slightly bohemian look. teatime images like teapots and plates appear frequently in lisa's work to add to the feminine but modern look that runs throughout the collection. i'm a big fan of her tea towels and tablecloths- there's a pattern for everyone in there and thankfully, lisa ships to the us! you can contact lisa and check out her full collection right here. enjoy! [thanks to mav for the tip and thanks to lisa for the lovely photos- great work, lisa!]




loyal loot


the last time i talked to the ladies of loyal loot collective they were part of the canadian cabin post i did on up and coming designers from our friendly neighbor to the north. since then i've heard about their latest work on poppytalk and heard it mentioned by a number of the student designers i spoke with last night at pratt, so i thought i should put up some of their new pieces (my review of the pratt design meet up will go up tomorrow).


loyal loot collective is made up of four very talented designers: carmen douville, doha chebib, dara humniski and anna thomas. founded in 2003, loyal loot tries to stay true to the nature of materials they use and create objects that will be cherished for ages to come, rather than used as disposable design. of their latest work, i was quite drawn to their bonnie and clyde nesting tables, pillow chair (reminds me of an updated la chaise) and cork table. their newest pieces really represent the new level of sophistication in their work- each piece is clean, streamlined and modern- i can't wait to see what comes next. click here for more info on loyal loot collective.





i love spain's luzifer design- fun name, imaginative designs and great finish options for each piece. this design, the hola mastil 10 would be perfect for those of you lucky enough to have a large, open space with high ceilings. nothing like a dramatic lighting statment. click here for more info on luzifer and here for their usa distributor.


cover design contest


tony, the art director of warrior magazine (a fantastic arts/culture mag based in montreal)just emailed me to let me know that warrior is having a cover design contest. i know you guys are artsy, so click here for the details and enter (all entries due june 1, 2006)! your work could be on the cover of warrior and well, that would be awesome.

j good design


nyc designer jeffrey goodman is well known for his work with glass. goodman's j good design studio is based in greenwich village and consistently produces elegant, modern lighting. his oculus pendants (above) and the dome pendant lamp below are some of my favorite pieces. goodman's design are simple enough to let the beauty of the glass shine through, but sleek enough to stand on their own. click here to place an order or find more information on jeffrey goodman at j good design.

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rehti design


rehti is a group of young finnish designers churning out some really beautiful products. i'm loving this kelkka alumninum lamp and decorative wege cast iron pan (available here). not sure how practical the pan is, but i love the idea of decorating a normally ignored part of the object. you can find more information on rehti design right here. enjoy!



adler newbies *

adler 5

new york's design wunderkind jonathan adler just released a pew new pieces of pottery: some gorgeous bird vessels, furnace bottles, striped vessels and spiral vases. most pieces are under $100 a piece, so click here for the full "new" collection.




designer boo louis of ekobo design was kind enough to pass along some of their eco-friendly world. based in france, ekobo is an eco-friendly studio specializing in bamboo designs. i was drawn to the products above and below but you can click here to check out the full line. and you can click here to find out a bit more about the eco-friendly aspects of working with bamboo and here to find a retailer near you. thanks, boo!




järvi & ruoho


d*s reader reka just passed along some great links to some of her favorite scandinavian designers. i really enjoyed the link to järvi & ruoho, a design duo based in helsinki (their name is finnish for lake and grass). järvi & ruoho have a site full of great prototypes that i thought might be a fun window shop- nothing for sale it seems, but this duo is full of potential. i especially love the h+ lamp they designed- it's simple and modern and a great indication of the sleekness this team of capable of. click here for more info on järvi & ruoho. thanks, reka! [i love the fish print on reka's blog]


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agnes and hoss lighting!


i'm a big fan of chicago's agnes and hoss. designer stephanie waddell's work is sophisticated, modern and full of rich, saturated colors. i've written about stephanie's gorgeous textiles before, but she's just launched a fantastic new line of lighting combining elegant lighting fixtures with her trademark floral fabrics. stephanie partnered with stonegate designs to produce the roots collection which includes single and double arm sconces, a table lamp, floor lamp and a triple pendant chandelier. each piece has an organic, floral feel to it is available in ten of stephanie's printed silk fabrics (more to come) right here. you can order directly through stonegate's dealers right here (prices start at $450). thanks for the heads up, stephanie- these are lovely! [stephanie's lights will be available at 2modern as well, i'll update when they're up]



chicago meet up [this saturday!]

motel bar

hi guys! i'm so sorry this is an URGENT CHANGE TO THE CHICAGO MEET UP! our room reservation for the d*s meetup fell through so we have a new space reserved at the MOTEL BAR. same time, same day, just a different place. so sorry for the last minute change, hope you can all still come. bring a friend, have a drink and come have some fun design talk with us THIS SATURDAY in chicago at 8PM at the MOTEL BAR. ac and i will see you there! xo, d*s

nest: for two *

nest for two

my friend jennifer and i poked our heads in a local used book store a few weeks ago and i picked up a gently used copy of nest: for two by allison serrell. it's an interesting look at how to create a "harmonious" look in a home shared by two people. if you're looking for inspiration in your own home, i highly suggest it. the rooms all share a sort of modern french country meets california look, which is something i'm totally loving right now. i'm finding myself drawn to really creamy warm colors and this book is full of them. so, if you're looking for a new design read, check out the lovely photos in nest: for two ($29.95 by chronicle books). enjoy!



port2port press podcast


it's monday and (despite major blogger issues today) it's time for another podcast. today i'm talking to maria vettese of port2port press in maine. maria is one of my favorite up and coming letterpress designers so [click here] to listen! maria's perspective on the design industry is really interesting because she's stil developing and growing her business so i think those of you in the throw of trying to start your own business will enjoy hearing all about maria's experiences. click here for more from maria and here are some of the links she discusses in the interview: lisa stickley (love her), ella doran and peculiar pair press [thanks to maria for taking the time for the interview and sending the pics of herself and her studio!]



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