Sunday, April 22, 2007

One's trash is anothers treasure

I have heard the stories from many about how they found this amazing vintage piece that would go for thousands on Ebay thrown on the side of the road. I have also heard about those lucky ones hitting a thrift store just as some choice pieces of Franciscan Starburst dishes were put out on the floor. These stories have always kept me going hoping one day such luck might happen upon me. Sadly I have never had such luck.

Although I have experienced this a few times with my significant other. He is an avid record collector and he has happened upon a mint 45 here and there that were considered to be the Lochness Monster of the vinly world (often talked about with great glee, but no one with real personal contact with the actual rarity).

This past week he made another great find. On our way back from the grocery store he spotted the iconic DCM chair tossed into a heap of household remnants. As we passed the pile he yelled to "stop the car" and "back up." He jumped out of the car and rescued the DCM from the trash with a huge smile of victory. It has a small imperfection that will need to be fixed where the shock mount has become dislodged, but this we can hopefully repair easily.

The chair designed by Charles and Ray Eames after they experimented with molded plywood to make leg splints for the United States Navy during World War II. The couple’s innovations with plywood led them to develop the DCM chair designed to fit the natural shape of the human body seated. The Herman Miller Company has been producing the chair since 1946 with natural, face veneers and polished chrome-plated 4-leg base. It is an icon of the Eames collaboration and a happy addition to our home. One person’s trash is our fantastic treasure.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Design Done Right

I used to buy the magazine Wallpaper*. It was fun to jet set with the editorials to beautiful places and think of staying at the uber designed hotels or wear those perfect clothes on a personal jet. It was an enjoyable farce. I bought the magazine to ogle with the editors while we both knew it was not very possible in the real world. The problem was that as time went on it seemed the edtors were making a joke at the readers expense. Issue after issue the spreads became more over the top and the joke got out of hand. I even began to wonder if they even like well designed things or they just like pretending to like them. So I stopped buying Wallpaper*.

I am excited the creator of Wallpaper* has started a new magazine called Monocle. I am very impressed by the cleverly named magazine that seems to be extremely well thought out. The design of the website is minimal with just five sections A, B, C, D, and E (Affairs, Business, Culture, Design, and Edit). It blows my mind when I see design that is perfectly simple because it is so rare. There are elements of of the website design, photos and the videos that remind me of Powers of Ten and other designs by Charles and Ray Eames.

The cover story for each section of the magazine has a video to accompany the piece. Take for instance the D section (Design) is about how the Sprinkles stores were designed. I wish other magazines would think about adding videos to their website similar to Monocle. I know many have added blogging, but I think a voice in the form of a podcast or video could really add dimension to many magazines. On a side note, I heard a few months back that Atlanta will have a Sprinkles shop soon. As much as the price tag for these little cakes can be frieghtening I know I will be in line opening day just to be inside this wonderfully designed shop from the cakes to the store. Not that you ever had to twist my arm to enjoy a cupcake. I would love to try their holiday cupcake for St. Patrick's day made with Baileys Irish creme. I am psyched to see it all come to together in this little shop.

I will have to add a subscription to Monocle and a cupcake from Sprinkles to my must have list. Maybe even enjoy them together!

Monday, April 16, 2007

For the LOVE of Teak

I have a small obsession with teak. I didn't realize how much I was drawn to teak until I started to notice the theme popping up all around my home. I love the warmth that eminates from this material that looks even more powerful contrasted by cool colors. Teak is synonymous with Danish Modern of the 1950's and 1960's mid-century furniture. It is a sturdy material with a real presence. The material can add a sleek, modern touch to any room.

The teak color scheme may be popular in vintage furniture, but conglomerates in the mass market still have not caught on. You can always find the the same old mahogany, espresso, blonde, white, or black color selections. Oh teak may show up in patio furniture, but for the most part it is not available in the mass market productions. West Elm did recently start offering a color selection similar to teak called acorn in a few items. For the most part teak is still more widely available in vintage furniture which can add the uniqueness to your home hard to find in today's market of same, same, and same!