Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Division of Design

What can this possibly mean?

You’ve heard it before. Retold in so many ways. So why would I choose to bring up this age old adage again…because. Because it is probably is the single most important factor in your design life.

Design is in the Details deserves continuous mention.

Division of Design  means, if you divide all the small details that go into designing a home or a single room, all those small divided details become the whole design...’the essence of the entire design.’ 

THE NEW traditionalists. Cushion and seatback are upholstered with a scarlet saffron wool milled in one of the finest Scottish mills that remains today. Texture is added to the outer frame and welt with the use of a laser cut leather in Dolphin.  Exposed wood frame features a hand applied smoked grey finish on maple.
It’s not just the BIG things you see in a room, or in your life for that matter, that count. It’s all those little things that mean so much more than we give them credit for. One rose for no special occasion can mean more than 2 dozen on Valentine’s day.

It's not enough to finish the checklist, to hurriedly do the last three steps and declare victory.

Some have asked me, ‘Why do you obsess for hours over the perfect cabinet knob?  How on earth do you make a living doing that?’  I say, ‘How on earth can I not!’ 

As always, I continue to compare and reflect upon how facets of design are akin to our human existence. The world is full of billions of people…each with a division of details that make all of us unique in our own way. Even our bodies are not perfectly symmetrical; the left and right sides of the human body are not a mirror image of each feature, whether one ear is larger than the other, one brow raised slightly higher, or one leg is a quarter-inch longer than the other.

So why would I not approach interior design the same way? Each and every individual detail of the room or home is unique as its own feature. Yet when properly balanced by scale, color, and proportion, the design creates the perfect image as a greater part of the whole. Even the grout color works to emphasize the appearance of tile. How often I’ve heard; ‘We couldn’t have known how the wrong grout color would so dreadfully affect the result of our tile floor”.  

In fact, the last coat of polish and the unhurried delivery of worthwhile work is valued all out of proportion to the total amount of effort you put into the entire project. 

Creating the Ambra Collection. Truly an Art Form. Photo Courtesy of Artistic Tile
The details are not the details. They make the design.
                                                                                                        -Charles Eames

 Al fine!


Sunday, April 22, 2012

the Sunday 'quote' - The Details are Details

'The details are details. They make the product. The connections, the connections, the connections. It will in the end be these details that give the product its life.'
                                                                                                          - Charles Eames 

BDDW  Lake Credenza - Hand carved ebony handles, American Black Walnut, Blackened steel base with adjustable bronze feet.

because…it IS all about the  d e t a i l s.
BDDW - Hand Made American Furniture.
American Holly, White Lacquer, Hand Carved Ebony Handles


Wednesday, April 18, 2012

GLASS – A Clear Distinction

Remember that first time you took a cruise on a glass bottom boat? I do and it was amazing. Ever since then, I’ve been fascinated by decorative glass. Glass stairs, glass flooring, tiles, stained glass windows, you name it, I’m there.

Lucky for me then, decorative glass as an interior design feature, has recently become a seemingly overnight success. Glass itself is certainly not a new material by any means. However, it is the 'new techniques and fabrication' of glass that have found its way into mainstream use and application. Glass easily takes color well and can be transformed into any texture or shape limited only by your imagination. 

Duvet – New York. Texture: Granula | Color: Crystal | Edge: Polished | Thickness: 36mm (1.5")

You will see it used now everywhere and in every way. Not only does it evoke a sense of mystery, like walking on water, it is a sustainable product; 100% recyclable. 

The qualities you should look for from a glass fabricator are:
·   A pure, rich and thick glass edge that surpasses the look of a traditional laminated edge which have plastic lines that takes away the matter's purity.
·   An anti-skid surface with a vast array of beautiful organic textures.
·   Glass thickness possibilities ranging from 36mm (1,5”) to 144mm (6”) with an exceptional edge.
·   A nearly invisible laminate film to secure the glass.
·   The options and possibilities to imbed artistic color into your flooring or treads.

In bathrooms and kitchens, you find glass used in mosaic tile patterns for back splashes and shower walls. Mix glass tiles with limestone, marble or granite to create a harmonious balance of transparent and opaque visual design elements.

This New York City bathroom, designed by Carol Kurth Interiors, shouts sophistication with Artistic Tile's Musee, Ambra and Opera Glass collections. 

It may surprise you, however,  to find glass used in these new, different, and unusual applications. For example, here it is used as a floor accent to reflect and bring light to the first floor living area below. These artistic floor panels allow the light from the upstairs window to cascade down in a thousand hues of colors. 

Bridge of Light.    Texture: Natura | Color: Artistic | Edge: Polished | Thickness: 36mm (1.5")

Or try using as stair treads envisioning a waterfall effect such as here. Staircases can become the focal point of a home.

Sapphire - Residential Development – Fort Lauderdale

Finally, one of my most recent favorite applications is glass used as the balustrade. 
Majestic Ramp

No longer when you think glass, will you envision the usual 1/2” thick glass topped coffee table, typical glass shelving or that clear glass shower door enclosure.  

A simple touch of glass, well designed and placed can make all the difference.  
 Glass can be and is so much more. 
Palais des Congrès, Montréal
Two of the largest glass murals in the world can be found at the Palais des Congrès de Montréal (Montreal’s Congress Center). Outside, 3000 pieces of glass create an impressive mosaic covering more than 1300 square feet, while the mural inside is made of 70 panels with pixelated images of people and covers over 500 feet in length.

Photo credits and information courtesy of THINK GLASS offering a wide range of unique glass floors, tiles and treads. Thumbs up! 

Sunday, April 15, 2012

the Sunday 'quote' - Through the Looking Glass

The Queen: 'Now, here, you see, it takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place. If you want to get somewhere else, you must run at least twice as fast as that!'
                                                                                                           -  Lewis Carroll

Photo Courtesy of CT&G

Given the mess we've made of our environment, we better start running twice as fast now to fix things. Let's start by becoming more aware and work toward using sustainable materials in our residential and commercial building and remodeling projects.  

Sustainable design, (also called environmental design), is the philosophy of designing physical objects, the built environment, and services to comply with the principles of economic, social, and ecological sustainability. 

One place to start with this? New trends and uses for glass. Glass is completely recyclable.  They melt the glass down and then reshape it and let it cool down. 

More glass inspirations to follow. Go Green!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The Worth of a Designer

"White Lashes" - Bonnie Edelman Photography
In the world of interior design, there is often a struggle to communicate and balance the value of such an esoteric service. Not until the end of a project, after all the final touches are in place, can the client understand the true worth of the designer.

The question then is; how do you place a monetary value on your time? As a designer, or for that matter, any other profession; educator, healthcare provider, writer, veterinarian, or parent.

Interior Design may be seen by some as impractical and dispensable. Others may consider our rates too high. What is it about designers that seem to influence our high price tag?
Let’s just look at the facts. Individuals and companies across the globe eagerly spend large sums of money for interior designers to decorate and design million-dollar headquarters and board rooms. These private and corporate consumers know that well-conceived, inspiring, out-of-the-box design solutions add value and panache to their building and boost their bottom line.

So what do we bring to the table; a thing that you can not immediately see or touch?

In a word, clarity. Any designer worth their hourly rate will utilize a design that uses all elements in moderation, creating the balance and an intelligent, nourishing flow.
At the end of the day, if you have made people happy and touched their lives in a small way, made a contribution to society, then you are worth your weight in gold. Whether in your personal relationships in life, or business transactions, how you’ve made an impact on an individual or group as a whole, creates the value.

When it comes to design though, I aim to take your breath away, and inspire for years and years to come. I am fortunate enough to have been told by several clients, “When I win lotto, you are worth many times more than what we’re paying you.”  Here is where I find the true value of Interior Design.
What is Interior Design Worth to You? 
Lower Saxon Harvest 2010 - Bonnie Edelman Photography