Archive for February, 2009

retaildetail Recap

By hawley


For those of you who missed it (or just our fellow design-obsessed), Design-Calendar is recapping the highlights of the retaildetail exhibition with Seven Continents by nakaoka/roberts.

The six week long exhibition was held at the Bridge Architecture and Design Gallery in the LES, the perfect space to showcase these romantic, contemporary pieces. The products are a first for well-known store designers Christine Nakaoka and Norman Roberts. New pieces on display included mirrors, chandeliers and shelving systems that can be used in retail or home. nakaoka/roberts developed the line to be functional for retail spaces but to embody its artistic intent — the result being fashionable and dramatic. Toronto based Seven Continents manufactured the products shown. The company specializes in innovative and custom furniture, mannequins, accessories and more. Be sure to check out the nakaoka/roberts website for more examples of their great interior design work.


The retaildetail exhibition space


Contract Presents Inspirations

By danielle


In case you missed it in this month’s eSPY (our monthly event e-newsletter), we want to make sure you take notice of this new competition organized by Contract.  The original deadline has been extended by one week (now March 4), so you still have time to enter.  

From innovative social networking groups like DESIGN21, that promotes design for the greater good, to “The 1%” pro bono design program instituted by Public Architecture, we are so proud to see the design industry’s whole-hearted response to social, humanitarian and environmental needs. On that note, it gives us great pleasure to include a new competition organized by Contract Magazine.  Named “Inspirations,” the competition was developed to recognize social responsibility in commercial interiors (either built or unbuilt). Entries will be reviewed by a distinguished panel of judges and evaluated based on effort, creativity and positive impact on the human condition.  The winners will be announced in Los Angeles on March 25 and appear in Contract Magazine. They will also receive a $5000 grant to the cause of which this inspirational work supported.


Something to Blog About: First Annual “Blogger’s Bash”

By alexandra


Last evening we found ourselves rubbing elbows and clinking cocktails with some of the coolest design bloggers around, including contributors from Apartment Therapy, Designer Pages, and The Huffington Post. The host, Veeder + Perman, transformed a raw space into an über trendy oasis truly worthy of its SoHo location.  Guests not only enjoyed superior food and drink, but had a blast playing Wii at special stations set up throughout the space.  We even had the chance to win amazing raffle prizes.  One blogger snagged a smashing Allsteel chair (the perfect solution to hours spent sitting at a computer), and one enthusiastic Wii dilettante was lucky enough to win a Wii of her very own! The soirée was so fun we stayed until the very un-bitter end.  As we left the event, we felt a sense of pride that our fellow bloggers were just as enthusiastic about design as we were- and knew how to party! (Can’t wait for the next big bash!)   


Our hosts: Mark & Esther from Veeder + Perman

Our hosts: Mark & Esther from Veeder + Perman



Allison Mezzafonte from AOL Living & Home was one of the night's big winners!

Allison Mezzafonte from AOL Living & Home was one of the night's big winners!


Scott G. Bradley of Networking Effectively won 5 gallons of Benjamin Moore paint

Scott G. Bradley of Networking Effectively won 5 gallons of Benjamin Moore paint


Nicole Janok of Veeder + Perman and Jennifer Rector of Designer Pages. Jen took home the Allsteel chair!





Kristin Coleman of Design-Calendar and Angela Innis of Jo Chicago

droog Opening in SoHo

By hawley


With locations in Amsterdam and Tokyo, the highly inventive droog is finally coming to the US. Opening on Thursday, February 26 the store will offer their collection that includes furniture, accessories and lighting. droog combines the desire for simplified, clean design with the conceptual. This fresh take on design allows for the creation of pieces that are unique and intriguing. Items like the Rag chair by Tejo Remy, made of an assortment of discarded clothes bundled together with metal strips, is a mix of functional and sentimental. The witty 85 Lamps chandelier by Rody Graumans, made merely of bulbs and wire, turns ordinary objects into a grand conversation piece.

Working with a large number of independent designers to create their products and build their brand, droog strives to respond to global issues by examining them on a local level. This can be seen in their limited edition pieces such as Limited fungi by Katharina Mischer, in examination of biodiversity, and the Chest of drawers by Tejo Remy, a comment on consumerism. We think droog keeps their promise of thoughtful and inspired design– and hope droog will continue to surprise our aesthetic and delight our intellect.

Located on 76 Greene Street (between Broome and Spring) the hours are 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday to Saturday, and 12pm to 6 p.m. Sunday.


Rag chair by Tejo Remy

85-lamps-chandelier85 Lamps by Rody Graumans

Architecture at the Oscars

By dania


And the Oscar Goes To…David Rockwell, for his role as production designer of the 81st Academy Awards.  Particularly fitting, since he was also the designer of the Kodak Theatre.

Rockwell was the first architect to be bestowed with the task of setting the stage for the Hollywood’s premier event and aimed to change the entire look and feel of the setting.  We think he succeeded beautifully!

His skill for creating over-the-top, glamorous spaces filled with eye-candy was seen throughout the design.  Brangelina and their fellow nominees glittered under a proscenium curtain made up of nearly 100,000 crystals.  Rockwell created a more intimate setting than seen in past years by incorporating a mini-stage that jutted into the audience and an onstage bandstand. The stage was surrounded by a circle of cascading white lights and flanked by enormous chandeliers; and strategically placed LED screens moved, transformed and reconfigured to fit the multiple sequences.  



Modern, American, Sustainable

By hawley


Looking for an entertaining and edifying way to spend a Tuesday night? Go to the “Modern, American, Sustainable” event, hosted by Design Within Reach. This free event, which will be held on Tuesday, February 24, from 7-9 pm, is a conversation between three American furniture design companies who are all producing their quality, modern goods with eco-friendly materials. The three participants, each showing a short-presentation of their work, include Seth Eshelman of Staach, Carlos Salgado of Scrapile, and Greg Benson of Loll. Afterwards, moderator Kimberly Oliver of DWR and HauteGREEN will ask each presenter to dig deeper and share his personal challenges, inspirations and thoughts on sustainable design. We’re sure this discussion will only aid the effort for an eco-friendly America.

With these green companies, it’s all about the materials. Loll is known for their simple, durable design, taking pride in their high quality, low cost furniture made from high-density polyethylene. Scrapile boasts one-of-a-kind pieces constructed with discarded scraps from New York’s woodworking industry. Similarly, Staach’s young designers create functional and sustainable pieces from reclaimed and new wood.

Still need incentive? Loll will be giving away a 100% recycled Adirondack chair and ottoman set, and Staach one of their Enos serving trays made from off-cuts of their furniture production. Don’t forget to RSVP!

DWR West 14th Street Studio
408 West 14th Street
(Between 9th and Washington)
New York, NY 10014
Phone: 212.242.9449

Confessions of a Shopaholic

By danielle


In honor of the movie and our love of shopping, we decided to spread the good word about some upcoming sales.  If the word sale isn’t enough to peak your interest – let us tell you that we are referring to design-giants Alessi and Kartell.  For the entire month of February, Alessi, a leader in tabletop design is offering discounts of up to 50% off on items that have an excess of stock as well as other popular pieces.  The sales event will be taking place at four flagship stores; Chicago, New York-Madison, New York-Soho, and San Francisco.   Additionally, Italian manufacturer Kartell , known for their innovative and glamorous plastic furnishings, is having a Warehouse sale at all US Flag stores. Discounts will range from 30-70% off “Warehouse” style, floor samples, discontinued items and overstock. This shopping experience doesn’t last quite as long as Alessi’s.  You only have 9 days (February 14-February 22) to get your goodies from Kartell. So hurry up and get those deals!



NYIGF 2009 Highlights

By hawley


Despite the current economic conditions, more than 32,000 buyers turned out for the 156 semi-annual edition of the NYIGF. Overall the buzz on the show floor was positive and chock full of new products; organizers reported a relatively healthy amount of buying activity. This dose of excellent new design was just what we needed to snap us out of our winter blues. The fair hosted many exhibitors, showcasing designers new and old with an immense range of product lines and goods. The many juried divisions, offering a hand picked selection, helped us sort through the masses to find the best.

Our favorite division? This year, Design-Calendar has its eye on Accent on Design® which showcases the industry’s most innovative designers and their collections. Accent on Design® was bursting with deliciously original products, with contributions from almost 200 contemporary product lines from all categories at the NYIGF. In addition, the division houses the program A+™ that serves as a platform for new designers.

This winter we are especially excited to report on the winners of the first ever “Blogger’s Choice Awards”. We know we can trust our fellow blogger’s picks for the hottest products of the gift fair. Top blogs and bloggers weighed in including UnBeige, DesignSponge and ApartmentTherapy. Stephanie Murg of had two picks: Areaware’s Geo Birdhouse, designed by Kelly Lamb, a geometric and minimal birdhouse that borders fine art. Her second was American Design Club’s Russian Nesting Doll Tables, designed by Rich, Brilliant, Willing, the pair was designed to fit together. Grace Bonney of appointed PATCH NYC as its top product line, with handcrafted pieces made accessible. Maxwell Gillingham-Ryan of also chose a piece by Rich, Brilliant, Willing. Their floor lamp captured his heart with its attention to detail.

We hope these design highlights come in handy this winter and look forward to the summer show, which will return to its traditional SaturdayThursday schedule and run from August 15 through August 20 at the Javits Center and Piers 92 and 94.


Areaware’s Geo Birdhouse


Rich, Brilliant, Willing’s Russian Nesting Doll Tables


Rich, Brilliant, Willing’s Excel Floor Lamp

Contract’s 30th Annual Interiors Awards

By danielle


In this moment of economic instability, it was nice to take a moment and reflect on the amazing feats that have been accomplished in commercial design this year.  The Contract Interiors Awards Breakfast was an inspiring and uplifting morning for all who attended.   We heard from the 2009 Legend Award Winner Wing Chao, vice chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts as well as executive vice president of Walk Disney Imagineering, whose lifetime of outstanding work and dedication to our industry is only matched by his unbelievable charm and charisma.  In his heart-felt speech, he thanked his family, shared his experiences and reminded us of that great old saying, “When you wish upon a star…anything your heart desires will come to you.

Legend Award Winner Wing Chao

Legend Award Winner Wing Chao


Contract also announced the 2009 Designers of the Year award. This year, the prestigious award was bestowed upon John Peterson and John Cary of Public Architecture.  These two talented individuals are the driving force behind “The 1%” – a program that connects non-profits with architecture and design firms willing to give their time pro bono. According to Peterson and Cary, “If every architecture professional in the U.S. committed 1% of their time to pro bono service, it would add up to 5,000,000 hours annually – the equivalent of a 2,500-person firm, working full-time for the public good.”  We think this statistic is simply amazing and encourage all of our readers to visit the site:


Designers of the Year John Peterson and John Cary of Public Architecture


And finally, we cannot forget about the 12 Interiors Awards winners.  Contract cleverly presented the winning entries through a series of short films all of which featured fortune cookies.  What’s the connection you might ask?  These small fortunes crack open up to show how design influences our world and our future. Click here to see creative videos.


The fabulous Contract team