Sunday, October 31, 2010
(image from Holly Becker of decor8)
Mass production, large factories, big containers coming here from Asia . . . now where is the romance in that? Yes, we have all consumed mass market product so there is nothing really wrong with it but I still love the handmade item and I love finding a really cool and really fun artist that still does just that. Born in NYC, Jill Rosenwald fell in love with making things by hand at summer camp in Vermont- you know macrame plant hangers, leather bracelets, etc. In her words, "I succumbed to the power of the handmade life very early on. As time passed, and college loomed, I realized I wanted to find a school that would speak to both sides of my brain the academic and the artistic. But after graduation, realizing that it was time to make the donuts, I decided to bring my work to the people of NYC, and I set up a box of earrings on a soho sidewalk, and as they say a star was born and I was forever hooked." She opened up her sunny downtown Boston studio studio in the late eighties in a very artsy section called Fort Point Channel. She works with her husband Lawrence Mcrae, also a very talented ceramic artist, and 7 artists who throw the earthenware, fire it, glaze it and hand-paint it. It's a long arduous process but a labor of love for both Jill and her husband. Jill has had much success with various home good licensing agreements (rugs, lighting, baby, etc.) but her studio line is just that- lovingly made in her studio and I think that is just perfect. This has been an amazing year for her - she introduced the much acclaimed line called the Hampton Links at the NY gift show in January and it appeared in several magazines from InStyle to House Beautiful. Her newest collection, introduced in August of this year is just as fabulous. It's called Buckley Chevron. It's a simple, trend right, "Charlie Brown" (as she calls it) pattern. She makes it special by the rich color combinations she puts together- orange with navy, yellow with light blue and light chartreuse with ochre. Jill gets inspiration from everywhere- a yellow and purple bed of flowers, Pucci scarves found in her Grandmother's drawer after she passed away, a pair of orange and white stripe pants she saw someone wearing. She snapped an image of a back bay balcony of an old townhouse that would later become inspiration for another new fall pattern called Newport Gate. Her designs are colorful, unique and so aesthetically pleasing. They will add a great pop to your home. I have a few pieces in my kitchen and they make me happy every time I look at them! And of course, they are just perfect for gift giving. Oh, and more importantly- she's a great person- full of life and hysterically funny!
Each piece can take several days to create from throwing to firing and painting. See the amazing process (highly simplified) below:
1. The inspiration:
2. The design- sketching and picking the perfect colors
3. Making the bisqueware
4. Sketching on the bisqueware
6. Glazing and firing
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
Imm Living creates modern cultural artifacts by drawing from traditional and popular cultures. Their products address notions of the past and present by playfully reminding us that culture evolves through experiences lived and shared. Their products are a synthesis of these experiences and they embrace them as artifacts. In sum, they design really cool items for your home that are also perfect for gift giving.
We love the "Best Years" wine stoppers for the beauty of their design and the novelty of it. Designed by Willie Tsang, each wine stopper is shaped like the animals of the Chinese Zodiac and represent their different personalities. The twelve-year cycle means you can drink and be merry, whether you were born in the year of the rat, pig or any creature in between.
There are so many fun ways you can give these totally cool wine stoppers. You can go to http://www.chinesezodiac.com/calculator.php and type in your birthday or your gift recipient's birthday and get the animal that coordinates with their birth year. Or get a different stopper for everyone in the family. Or, you can get the animal that coordinates with the year of the wine that you are bringing to the party. Or you can go here: http://www.chinesezodiac.com/signs.php and read about the qualities associated with each Zodiac sign and give the animal that most matches your friend's personality! Or just pick an animal that you like. These are great for hostess gifts, client or corporate gifts. Perfect for the boss-especially with a bottle of great wine. But, you probably should refrain from asking the boss the year he or she was born- in that case just pick the coolest animal- like the horse or the ox. The pig or the snake might not be the best choices for the boss though- just a thought.
Wednesday, October 6, 2010
Thanks Woman's Day for featuring our mercury glass votive set from Roost in their special Halloween Celebrations edition (on new stands now)! The set comes with 6 votives, each one is different- giving the set a really cool, vintage feeling. They are perfect for Halloween decorating, and gorgeous for the Holidays. Of course, I love them year round. I still have mine on my mantle and I just love the way the look. Stay tuned for some more great products from Roost for the holidays!
Monday, October 4, 2010
Wow, what a cold day in CT today, although it's nothing compared to how cold it's going to get pretty soon but it's just so hard to get used to! Regardless, fall is a wonderful season-I love the muted earthtones- the reds, ochres and golds. So, I put together a little collage of some of our items that make me think of the warm, rich colors of fall.
from left to right
1st row: John Derian Native American's sitting, CDP Orange Blossom cream, Lucia tea leaf and honey soap, Royola Pacific Designs utility tray
2nd row: Sukie City notebook, Jill Rosenwald orchid vase, MZ Wallace Olivia in cranberry, John Derian Native American's Standing
3rd row: Linnea's Lights pumpkin candle, Ted Rossi studded wrap bracelet, Rebekah Brooks gold swallow necklace
Oh and one more thing, for our lovely blog readers, now through Friday, 10/8, get 15% off! Use code: Oct15.