Short-Circuit

Sometimes life is all about a fresh start.  Sometimes all one needs for a new perspective is the inspiration of another person’s actions.

One glance at Gaspard Tiné-Berès’ design work caught my attention, but it was as I learned more about his Short-Circuit trio of appliances and the affirmative business plan behind them that inspiration came.

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Company Profile – Viola Park

Seattle, WA may be a Mecca for coffee lovers, but there’s so much more to the city than that.  It’s also a hotbed for sustainable business ethics and the development of a low-impact lifestyle, both of which mesh nicely with this week’s featured company, Viola Park.

But to tell their story it’s necessary to back up a bit. Read the rest of this entry »

Stella Bleu Designs

William Morris once said, “Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.”

 And 19th-century architect Louis Sullivan proclaimed that “form ever follows function,” an idea that vastly influenced the modernist movement in design.

One can find much to uphold both maxims in the work of Stella Bleu Designs, where the creations of Mississippi-born designer Katie Katzenmeyer are both functional and aesthetically pleasing, elegant and sturdy.  In a word, useful.

On view at her website (along with her Etsy shop, here) are shelves and garment racks made from industrial steel pipe, reclaimed wood, and other salvage materials gleaned from local, family-owned salvage yards and demolition sites.  Everything is made from scratch in house. Read the rest of this entry »

Trending – Foxes

Owls, deer, butterflies, songbirds of every sort,… even octopus!  All have become trends in graphics and interiors over the last few years, and for good reason.  Between the renewed interest in all things outdoors, and the surge in handcrafted artisan goods, it was inevitable that people would want to populate their homes with their own personal totem (or just animals they think are cool looking).

So, get ready to meet the “new” critter on the block…

Whether the Fantastic Mr. Fox, dapper in his regal orange coat, or the clever and magical Japanese kitsune, the big ears and clever ways of the fox capture our imagination.

So go ahead.  Get a little foxy with your home!

To see more images, inspiration, and sources for some of these great fox finds, check out my Trending – Foxes board on Pinterest.

Thanks for visiting!

Rachel

Merida Meridian

In interior design furniture, textiles, and light fixtures tend to steal the show but flooring – alas, often of less glamour – is equally essential. When one gets up in the morning and paddles through the house, it’s good to know that the comfortable carpet underfoot matches one’s ethics as well as it matches one’s furniture.

The idea of low- or no-VOC paint or finishes seem to have seeped into the public consciousness enough that the former are commonly found at big box home improvement stores.

Low-VOC carpet? Not so much.

So it was pleasant to discover these flooring options by Merida Meridian: carpet patterns which can not only contribute to LEED points but which are, according to the company, “Green-Label Plus certified”.

So what does that mean? Read the rest of this entry »

Etsy Find of the Week – St Patrick’s Day Edition

St Patrick’s Day holds a special place in my heart, ’cause, well, it’s my birthday day too.  So in celebration of all things green and Irish, here is a little St Patrick’s Day round-up, Etsy Style.

Looking for a little good luck?  How about this Lucky Horseshoe?

This recycled burlap pillow has (Irish) Whiskey stamped all over it.

Love this sweet little felt bunting made from a recycled wool sweater.

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Ariele Alasko of Brooklyn to West

The ear-jarring purr of a chop saw… the unmistakable scent of freshly cut wood and sawdust…  Oh, yeah.  Bring it on.


There are special properties to wood that remain hidden unless one physically works with it, gets one’s hands dirty, breathes that dust, learns that grain, that temperament, that joy…

Ariele Alasko, of Brooklyn to West, understands.  This New York City-based artist – furniture maker, photographer, sculptress, blogger, cook – takes salvaged wood & reclaimed “junk” into her Brooklyn home and out of those castaways makes this delightful stuff.  Her work is a living example of why home furnishings should be hand made. Read the rest of this entry »

Trending – Bringing the Outdoors In

I don’t know about you, but I could definitely go for a bedroom like this…

I probably have an acute case of biophilia I guess.

With so many articles pointing to the positive effects spending time in nature provides us, it makes sense to get outdoors as much as we can.  However, for many of us (yours truly included), time outside is at a premium.  So why not bring some of the great outdoors in?

You can start small, with a terrarium or two.

Or go big and grand, like this living wallpaper. Read the rest of this entry »

Artisan Profile – Jan DiCintio of Daisy Janie Fabrics

I felt blue this morning, so opened up Jan DiCintio’s blog and within five minutes all that blah was washed away by her cheery, cheeky attitude and the philosophy surrounding red flowers.

 

An artist’s soul is inextricably wound up in their work, but this seems particularly true with Jan and Daisy Jane Fabrics.  While researching this profile I wandered onto her blog, and before I’d even touched my tea her infectiously sunny, positive, let’s-do-it voice had led me six pages deep.  That doesn’t happen often.  So let’s meet this wonderful lady and see what she’s all about.

The focus of Daisy Janie is the design of original patterns for use on organic cotton fabrics, with wholesale collections released twice a year, spring and autumn.  The product is produced with cotton that has been grown, harvested, processed, and woven according to the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS).  Both the low-impact pigments and pigments used in the printing & finishing stages are similarly in accordance.  And, in addition, the fabric is produced in a Fair Trade Certified facility.

That’s the dry version.

What it doesn’t capture is Jan’s enthusiasm, or her passion for pattern, line, texture, and form, or her “fiery personal philosophies for ecofriendly living”.  And, just as certifications and standards can’t express the personal depth of her business practices, so words can’t adequately express the spring-like joie-de-vivre of her designs.  Only pictures can do that. Read the rest of this entry »

Fun with WallArt

Remember being a kid and sitting down with your trusty box of crayons and a nice big inviting expanse of white paper?  All that great, creative possibility at your fingertips?  Yeah…

The owners of Dutch company WallArt must remember, too, because they’re given designers a grown-up version of that moment: 3D embossed wall panels in friendly do-something-awesome-with-me white.  Check out these brilliant examples from their Projects page while I tell you about the product itself.

It starts with sugar.  Rather, it starts with bagasse, the fibrous residue left over when sugarcane is shredded to extract the sweet stuff we put in our coffee every morning. Read the rest of this entry »