Thursday, August 27, 2009

Renegade Craft Fair coming up again!

Just a quick post about the upcoming Chicago Renegade Craft Fair. I went to this wonderful street fair for the first time last year and despite the torrential, driving rain, loved it. It's coming up again in a couple weeks and I have my fingers crossed for decent weather this time!

The fair consists of booth after booth of artisans and craftspeople selling a huge assortment of clothing, jewelry, prints, posters, and any other type of handcrafted or handprinted item you could imagine. Check it out!

My favorite purchase from last year's fair: a tee shirt with this design on it from Seibei

Parasol Mag - A Fantastic Discovery!

I came across this very cool online magazine focusing on art, design, lifestyle, and crafting called Parasol. The best part (aside from the original content and lack of advertising): the issues are free to download. The first issue can be viewed as a pdf here and you can find the rest at the magazine's homepage.

In the magazine are profiles of all sorts of cutting edge artists, designers, and crafters, including Alexandra Romano, a photographer and digital print artist. I was really taken with her collection that was inspired by Carneval in Venice. They are available for purchase on Etsy and you can see her full print portfolio here, on her website.

She is just one of the many inspirational talents profiled in Parasol. I am excited to delve further into Parasol to discover more new talent!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

New York Times on Interior Design

In today's Home and Garden section, the New York Times has a couple articles about the changing interior design industry. Many high-end designers are taking on smaller or different types of projects than they typically would, and it's leading to a redefinition of the designer-client interaction.

As an experienced high-end designer, I can identify. With the economy, you have to be flexible in how you offer your services. Instead of my standard full-on design services where I work within the client's budget to select all sorts of furnishings and finishes from trade resources, I've found more clients interested in my consultation services with recommendations on where to purchase products at retail, or a furniture plan service where I help determine layout and let the clients shop for their own furniture, or paint and architectural finish consultations.

I am always on the lookout for new projects, so if you or anyone you know needs some help but have been intimidated by using a designer for something you thought might be too small of a request, drop me a line! I love providing whatever help I can, whether it be a large-scale renovation, selecting window treatments, or even reupholstery of a few chairs.

Monday, August 17, 2009

White Attic - Vintage Chic Bookcases

Just saw over on Chicago Home & Garden's Domestica Blog that local shop White Attic is now making custom glass-front bookcases.
White Attic's stock in trade is refinished vintage modern case goods that they bring new life to by repainting in luxe, muted colors or revarnishing to bring out the beauty of the natural wood. We have a chest from them that works perfectly in our entry and I visit the shop periodically to get inspired for other projects.

We've been in the market for a pair of vintage barrister bookcases with glass fronts, but maybe these could be a suitable alternative - given we've had no luck combing antique shops and sales for a matching pair of vintage ones in good condition. Hmm.

Marimekko Fabulosity

After my sister sent me a link to Marimekko's website (to look at an adorable dress), I found their online library of fabric patterns. Listed by designer, Marimekko fabrics are always crisp and refreshingly creative. Here are some of my favorites:

Kevätjuhla by Miina Äkkijyrkkä (not sure how to pronounce that one!)

The site shows numerous fabrics made into duvet sets for the bedroom. It's funny - the way they're all styled and photographed from an aerial perspective, I thought they were all hot water bottles until I enlarged one and realized it was a bed shot from above.

Here are a couple of the patterns I really liked:

The signature Marimekko style lends itself naturally to kids' products.

Check out this adorable bib.

And this twist on the classic game, "Memory." Wouldn't it be more fun with Marimekko patterns involved?