Been There, Done That!

Enjoy a Beary Special Valentine!

By Katie Suh


Today is Valentine’s Day, so we would like to give a V-Day shoutout to our favorite design eye candy: the Vandal Gummy Bear, an extraordinary 14-foot gummy bear sculpture designed by design-build firm D. Flatt and street prodigy WhIsBe. Go big and bold this Valentine’s day with this over-the-top sculpture that is sure to satisfy your sugar cravings for the entire month of February. D.Flatt and WhIsBe partnered on an exquisitely unique art installation for the “I-Robot” themed Burning Man Festival that occurred last August. WhIsBe is known for his experimental and contemporary art pieces that spark deliberative dialogue and provide a sense of refined socio-awareness. His Vandal Gummy sculptures are one of his more notorious creations that evokes a certain juxtaposition between an innocent candy staple and an image of a prisoner that forces the viewer to question the very institutions that surround them. D.Flatt believed that this was a message that deserved to be blown up into a massive and expressionary piece of artwork.

D.Flatt’s knowledge and experience in retail, custom exhibits, trade show productions and displays, along with their 10,000 sq ft. workshop, made them the perfect and only collaborator who could transform WhIsBe’s vision into a reality. As a team, they were able to produce a 14-foot, larger-than-life Vandal Gummy sculpture that was flown across the country from New York to Nevada to be constructed into the free standing art installation that it came to be. D.Flatt knew that it had to be manufactured in a more efficient manner that would allow the artwork to be lighter. Thus, they engineered the bear with less exterior plywood and other heavy-weight materials making the Burning Man endeavor achievable. Ask your loved one, “Wood you be my Valentine?” And together, watch the entire journey of the specialty Vandal Gummy documented in a visionary video, Vandal Gummy + Burning Man as you and your loved one enjoy a beary special Valentine.


CES – Where Tomorrow Happens Now

By danielle


What’s happening at the most influential technological event of the year? A New Year translates to new ideas at CES which breaks planetary boundaries on what consumers thought was possible. With over 180,000 guests representing over 150 countries business is at the center of this event with over 4,500 companies launching products on the global market. Innovation meets opportunity with manufacturers, developers, and suppliers building strong relationships amongst each other. This combination is a recipe for success for any product launch like Black Box VR which increased its following by almost 50% after CES. This year product categories range from AR/VR and gaming, sleep tech, smart cities, and design & source showcase.

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Photo by Chris Welch / The Verge

TV’s stole the show during the pre-show announcements with TVs you can roll up, talk to, and TVs bigger than the modern home wall. Apple was included as part of TV launches as most of these modern TVs will now include airplay as Apple transitions to becoming more accessible in the living room with the pending launch of their video streaming service. Las Vegas is known for its extravagance, and this show does not fall short of technological indulgence. An exciting upgrade on AR/VR technology includes mixing both technological medians to create XR which can capture 180-degree stereo image as well as 360-degree video. Other hot new items for the year include solar charging watches, monitor arms, and shoes that alert you against falls.

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Photo courtesy of Wired

Screen Shot 2019-01-08 at 2.18.57 PM

Photo courtesy of Wired

Furry friends aren’t left behind with the latest device allowing consumers to track their location and environmental conditions which makes moments like flying much less frightening for owners and their pets.

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Photo courtesy of Wired

Cars made a splash on day 1 like BMW  with its self-riding motorcycle that left looked like something out of a fictional movie. Ford also took the spotlight with with cars that communicate with traffic, pedestrians, and road signs. Google also played with cars by building an interactive ride to mirror the message that life can take twists and turns but with google assistant is always there for your everyday needs whether it be in the kitchen, living room or on the road #HeyGoogle


Photo courtesy of Ford

There are also products that strive to build a sustainable tomorrow like smart gardens that use LED lights, wifi, and an app to facilitate any environmental enthusiast to grow super plants anywhere they go.

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Photo courtesy of EDN Tech

The other S word on everyone’s mind, security is one of the highlights of CES with a range of products that track everything from video doorbells to baby video monitors with breath detection. The number 1 camera robot company Amaryllo International B.V. is releasing atom AR4 and AR5 which will be a step up to their already captivating security systems.

Business just got smarter with  which uses AI to create powerful predictive models for smart applications within minutes. Companies like Continental, Chanel, and netseengery are already using their services.

And that’s a wrap! Only time will tell how these breakthrough technologies change the reality we experience.


Interior Design Hall of Fame Inductees

By Katie Suh


Last week, Interior Design hosted the 34th annual Hall of Fame gala at the River Pavilion at Javits Center. The black-tie event is the Academy Awards of the interior design industry. This year, the ceremony honored five distinguished individuals selected by Interior Design editor-in-chief Cindy Allen and a committee of previous “HoF” members. Says Allen, “This year’s Hall of Fame inductees have the uncanny ability to push beyond, and their talent is matched only by a desire to create the new and the next. Their collective work is also grounded in a deep sense of humanity, that has impacted their clients, communities, and the greater world.”

Let’s take a look at this year’s inductees:

Marcel Wanders

Legendary Dutch industrial and interior designer Marcel Wanders is a pivotal figure in the industry, continuing to challenge the boundaries with unique creations marked by a playful, quirky, and whimsical character. Wanders’ extensive repertoire encompasses more than 1,900 projects and product designs for Baccarat, Cappellini, Christofle, Flos, Kartell, KLM, Louis Vuitton, Morgans Hotel Group, Poliform, Puma, and Swarovski. His eye-catching designs are also featured in the most prestigious cultural institutions and museums throughout the world including the Centre Pompidou and MoMA. “I want to change design as an idea. We have created a throwaway society and I think that’s what we have to fight within the context of design. I want to create a world that’s more durable, that’s just more romantic – more human.” – Wanders.

Mondrian Doha, a five-star hotel in Qatar, designed by Marcel Wanders. Courtesy of Marcel Wanders.

Mondrian Doha, a five-star hotel in Qatar, designed by Marcel Wanders. Courtesy of Marcel Wanders.

Lisa Iwamoto and Craig Scott of IwamotoScott

Lisa Iwamoto and Craig Scott are the work and life couple who have been powerhouses in the San Francisco design and architecture arena with massive projects on the workplace scene. Their recent completed work includes Pinterest, Bloomberg Media, and Twitch. The fluid and organic designs of Iwamoto and Scott transform any space into a living and breathing organism – one that not only serves as a perceptual experience but interacts with its environment. “When we approach interiors, we do it with an architectural eye. We like to think about it really spatially and formally – and abstractly. You know, light and proportion – they’re such classic drivers of architecture for so long – but it’s the space that we occupy that allows us to perceive all those relationships.” – Iwamoto and Scott.  

Voussoir Cloud installation for the Southern California Institute of Architecture gallery in Los Angeles in 2008. Courtesy of IwamotoScott.

Voussoir Cloud, an installation for the Southern California Institute of Architecture gallery in Los Angeles in 2008. Courtesy of IwamotoScott.

Patrick Tighe of Tighe Architecture

As one of Los Angeles’s preeminent architects, Patrick Tighe has a unique vernacular for design. His philosophy, that architecture can profoundly impact one’s experience of and in this world, influences every project he works on. Tighe has not only completed large-scale commercial and retail projects, but he has also worked on projects that reach out to local marginalized communities by creating housing for the homeless and LGBT and creating an all-accessible playground on Malibu beach. His works in varying social contexts have truly made him a leader in the industry. “You can’t do a great building without thinking about the interior. And you can’t do a great interior without thinking about how it connects to a larger idea.” – Tighe


Trahan Ranch, a residential project in the rolling hills landscape of Texas Hill Country. Courtesy of Tighe Architecture.

Kengo Kuma of Kengo Kuma and Associates

One of the pioneering figures of contemporary architecture today is Kengo Kuma. His practice is unique in its exploration of everyday materials and use in different unconventional ways. Kuma mixes traditional Japanese ideas with that of modern-day techniques, creating unprecedented structures with the same appearance of lightness and softness but with unexpected materials like stone in place of wood or glass used in traditional Japanese architecture. Kuma continues to explore the limitless boundaries of materiality in his designs. “Design is about the relationship between the material and us. The most important thing is to create intimacy between me and every element of the building.” – Kuma

A Yakitori bar on the outskirts of Tokyo, decorated with a web of colored cables. Courtesy of Erieta Attali.

A yakitori bar on the outskirts of Tokyo, decorated with a web of colored cables. Courtesy of Erieta Attali.

Trend Forecast: Top 7 Tile Trends for 2019

By Katie Suh


There are a handful of events that set the stage for defining the world of design each year. Cersaie – the international exhibition of ceramic tile and bathroom furnishings – is one such tradeshow, where over 100,000 designers, installers, and buyers travel to Bologna, Italy each September to learn about cutting edge products and technologies in the tile industry. These are seven of the biggest tile trends as seen in the hundreds of new collections from Ceramics of Italy member manufacturers at the 36th edition of Cersaie.


For years, Italian tile manufacturers have been expanding the definition of a product, offering specifiers a whole suite of surfacing tools around a single idea or design. At first, it was a range of colors, finishes, and sizes as well as complementing decors and trims. Now, with continued investment in production equipment, many companies are expanding their range of thicknesses – and thus applications – with tiles ranging from 3-30mm including a new 12mm thick porcelain tile specifically designed for kitchen countertops, bathroom vanities, tables and outdoor kitchens. Examples include: Ariana Bath Design, Atlas Concorde Atlas Plan, Blustyle Yosemite, Emilgroup Level, FLORIM stone, Gigacer Pietre, Keope Plus, La Fabbrica, Ca’ Foscari, Lea Bio Select, Mirage Esprit 2.0, Panaria Context, Serenissima Magistra, Sicis Vetrite, and Supergres Stoorm.

Pictured Clockwise: Emilgroup Level, Atlas Concorde Atlas Plan, Ariana Bath Design, FLORIM stone, LaFabbrica Ca’Foscari

Pictured Clockwise: Emilgroup Level, Atlas Concorde Atlas Plan, Ariana Bath Design, FLORIM stone, LaFabbrica Ca’Foscari


From three-dimensional tiles that look like giant Lego bricks (Marca Corona Bold) to popular cartoons illustrated on ceramic (Del Conca Felix the Cat), when projects call for playfulness, Italian tile answers in full. Companies are continuously experimenting with color, size and patterns to create one-of-a-kind surfacing for architects and designers. They also offer tailor made solutions like Ornamenta’s ability to print large porcelain slabs in any Pantone color. Additional examples of this trend include: ABK Wide&Style Dark Edition, Appiani Denim, Atlas Concorde Boost, Caesar Core, Ceramica Francesco di Maio Puntini, Del Conca Sorrentina, Fioranese Liquida, Fuoriformato Tropik, Gardenia Orchidea Make, Gigacer Avantime, Leonardo Ashima, Marazzi D_Segni, Rondine Swing, Mosaico+ Diamond, Naxos Lumiere, Tonalite Joyful, and Unica Remix.

Pictured Clockwise: Caesar Core, Del Conca Felix the Cat, Leonardo Ashima, Marca Corona Bold

Pictured Clockwise: Caesar Core, Del Conca Felix the Cat, Leonardo Ashima, Marca Corona Bold


Moving beyond common varieties of stone like carrara, statuario, and travertine, Italian tile producers are scouting quarries throughout the world to find obscure marble full of color and character or digitally manipulating the look of natural stone to create something that is literally out-of-this-world. For Sicis’ ever-evolving Vetrite collection, the enchanting magic of 13 gemstones are captured and amplified in between giant sheets of glass to create lunar-like landscapes for the Gem Glass line. Meanwhile, Refin Stardust combines the nebulous veining of alabaster with elegant metallic surface effects to create a line of porcelain tiles inspired by the nighttime sky. Other collections include: Atlas Concorde Marvel Edge, Ava Preziosi, Casalgrande Padana Onici, Ceramiche Piemme Majestic Valentino, Cercom To Be, Cotto d’Este Vanity, Edilgres I’m Italian Marble, Emilceramica Tele di Marmo, Fire Transalp, Fondovalle Shards, Imola The Room, Italgraniti Mega, LaFaenza Bianca, Lea Delight, Marazzi Grande, Novabell Imperial Michelangelo, Panaria Eternity Zero.3, Rex Etoile di Rex, Stile Italia Extra, and Supergres Purity of Marble.

Pictured Clockwise: Ceramiche Piemme Majestic Valentino, Cotto d’Este Vanity, Emilceramica Tele di Marmo, Fire Transalp, Atlas Concorde Marvel Edge

Pictured Clockwise: Ceramiche Piemme Majestic Valentino, Cotto d’Este Vanity, Emilceramica Tele di Marmo, Fire Transalp, Atlas Concorde Marvel Edge


Whether soft or electric, blue is one of the hottest hues in tile design this year, offering a revitalizing pop of color to a variety of interiors. Some, like Cedit’s Rilievi sculptural ceramic wallcoverings, are the kind of hyper blue associated with contemporary artists Yves Klein and Frida Kahlo. Others, like Refin Creos and Provenza Vulcanika, conjure the feeling of vacation and the shallow teal waters of the Mediterranean Sea. Additional collections include: Appiani Denim, Casa Dolce Casa Artwork, Ceramica Colli Fes, Ceramica Francesco di Maio Blu Ponti, Ceramica Sant’Agostino Vita, Ce.Vi. Ceramica Vietrese Happy Days, Cerasarda OT07026, Cir Miami, Fap Pat, Level Raku, Made+39 Acquerello, Tonalite Provenzale and Vogue Dekorami.

Pictured Clockwise: Casa Dolce Casa Artwork, Francesco de Maio Blu Ponti, Cedit Rivieli, Colli Fes

Pictured Clockwise: Casa Dolce Casa Artwork, Francesco de Maio Blu Ponti, Cedit Rivieli, Colli Fes


Italians are known for their rich artistic heritage, which are now rendered on big porcelain slabs with minimal grout lines to create the alluring effect of wallpaper with the technical benefits of ceramic. In fact, some companies are even marketing their products as ceramic wallpaper, offering an expansive catalog of patterns digitally printed on tiles up to 5.25’x10′. One example is ABK who introduced Dark Edition as a capsule collection inspired by the Gothic side of nature for its ever-expanding Wide&Style line. Another company is Fuoriformato who offers an explosion of color and pattern on large ceramic surfaces that can also be used as furnishing elements. Additional examples include: 14oraitaliana Tahiti, Casalgrande Padana Onici, Fioranese Liquida, Keope Eclectic, Mirage Bottega, Ornamenta Operae, Panaria Even, Rondine Swing, Stile Italia Extra, Unica Garden, and Vallelunga Sospiri.

Pictured Clockwise: Casalgrande Padana Onici, Stile Italia Extra, Vallelunga Sospiri, Unica Garden, Panaria Even

Pictured Clockwise: Casalgrande Padana Onici, Stile Italia Extra, Vallelunga Sospiri, Unica Garden, Panaria Even


This year, it wasn’t just the patterns and sizes that impressed with their seemingly endless variety and sense of inventiveness. Tile producers have completely upped the ante in terms of surface design, which can be seen in dozens of awe-inspiring, new finishes and textures designed for aesthetics as well as functionality. Two collections that artfully demonstrate this trend as well as ceramic tiles’ chameleon capabilities include Ceramica Sant’Agostino Lakewood that conjures oiled wood planks with a hand planed surface and Vallelunga Cava whose marble design and satin finish looks like an ancient European church floor. Additional collections include: 14oraitaliana Slice, Campani Divinae, Bardelli Pittorica, Coem Moonstone, Decoratori Bassanesi Tartan, Cerdisa Espirit, Cir Paris, Ergon Woodtouch, Fap Lumina, Imola Blue Savoy, Italgraniti Icône Bleu, Made +39 Cube, Marazzi Eclettica, Marca Corona Arkistone, Piemme Shades, Supergres Met-All and Viva Yaki.

Pictured Clockwise: Made+39 Cube, Marazzi Eclettica, Fap Lumina, Ceramica Sant’Agostino Lakewood, Campani Divinae

Pictured Clockwise: Made+39 Cube, Marazzi Eclettica, Fap Lumina, Ceramica Sant’Agostino Lakewood, Campani Divinae


From ancient forms and 18th century patterns to tiles inspired by charming places seemingly stuck in time, Italian tile manufacturers are finding creative ways to make the old feel new again. Mixed and matched patterns, like those of 14oraitaliana’s Folk and Ceramica Sant’Agostino’s Vita collections, evoke the imagery and vibrant colors of Italy’s most famous and beloved territories. Fioranese’s Liquida slabs resemble 1950’s-style wallpaper, while the earthy tones and textured surfaces of Provenza’s Terraquea collection recall traditional terracotta ware. Designed with nostalgic sentiments, each of these collections combine the aesthetic and cultural qualities of the past with the technological innovations of today. Other collections include: ABK Dark Edition, Ceramica Colli Fes, Ceramica Vietri Antico Mediterranea, Cerasarda OT07026, Cir Miami, Faetano Sorrentina, LaFabbrica Space, Marca Corona Ossidi, Rondine Swing, Serenissima Magistra, Tonalite Aquarel, and Unica Pece.

Pictured Clockwise: Ceramica Sant’Agostino Vita, Rondine Swing, Marazzi D_Segni

Pictured Clockwise: Ceramica Sant’Agostino Vita, Rondine Swing, Marazzi D_Segni

More so than ever before, this year’s Cersaie show demonstrated that Italian tile manufacturers lead the industry in digital manufacturing, sustainability, and of course, design – continuously pushing the boundaries to ensure that they are always providing cutting edge products of the highest quality. Many of these and other new tile lines available in the U.S. market will be showcased at Coverings – North America’s preeminent event for the ceramic tile industry – taking place April 9-12, 2019 in Orlando, Florida. The next edition of Cersaie – a must for tile lovers from all over the world – is scheduled for September 23-27, 2019 in Bologna, Italy.

Highlights from Archtober 2018

By Katie Suh


It’s already mid-November and yesterday we had our first snow of the season! It seems as if October flew over us, so we wanted to highlight some of our favorite events from Archtober! This year marked the 8th annual Archtober celebration, a month-long event that takes place throughout the month of October. Organized by the Center for Architecture, Archtober celebrates New York’s architecture and design through various curated activities, programs, and exhibitions.

Some of the most interesting events are the building/ site tours that take place each day. Take a look at some of our favorites from the tour:

Domino Park, located in Williamsburg, Brooklyn opened June of this year. The site was actually the home of Domino Sugar Factory which closed in 2004. For years, the 11-acre land lay dormant while talks over development flung back and forth between community members and city officials. Finally in 2012, the land was acquired by real estate development firm Two Trees Management Company. Redevelopment began and Domino Park opened this summer. The redevelopment of the space poses an interesting juxtaposition between the past and the present, showing the evolution of spatial areas over time. And from this project, we can see the development of an entire community – the development of Brooklyn’s east waterfront community – and the evolution of what once was a largely industrial community to what it is today: a lively community of vibrant synergies. But the legacy of the people that shaped the community, and the community that shaped the history remains. And it is through the architecture of the park we can see the merge of the past with the present.


Domino Park 2018. Courtesy of Curbed NY.

Before becoming Domino Park, the site was the home of Domino Sugar Factory. Courtesy of Paul Raphaelson.

Before becoming Domino Park, the site was the home of Domino Sugar Factory. Courtesy of Paul Raphaelson.

Domino Park today. Courtesy of solepsizm /

Domino Park 2018. Courtesy of solepsizm /

Five Manhattan West was another point of interest to us. Though it boasts its modern appearance today, its history actually dates back to 1969. With its first inception in 1969, the building was applauded for being the paradigm of the late Brutalist architecture. But over the years, it had become more of an ancient artifact and many people began to consider it an eyesore because of its hard, formidable structure. Even talks over its demolition took place. Eventually, the building underwent a massive facelift and today, it showcases a brilliantly modern structure with a glass facade that zig-zags down like a magnificent manmade waterfall.

5 Manhattan West 2018. Courtesy of Brookfield Property Partners.

Five Manhattan West 2018. Courtesy of Brookfield Property Partners.

Before the renovation. Courtesy of REX.

Before the renovation. Courtesy of REX.

123 Melrose was another site that caught our eyes. At first sight, the residential building can almost be mistaken for a museum or a gallery, with its seven-story murals on the walls which can be seen from the outside through its glass-lined corridors. The building displays the theme and the current trend of bringing art and culture into communal spaces. 123 Melrose is a dynamic space that ignites curiosity and brings the community together. According to the Principal Architect Eran Chen, “The present wave of urban renewal in Bushwick gives us not only the opportunity but the responsibility to adjust old modes of living to our current ways of life… creating a strong sense of community and providing the kind of housing forms we all dream of.”

Courtesy of Denizen.

Courtesy of Denizen.

If you didn’t have a chance to check out these buildings from Archtober, make sure to check them out some other time. There are also a multitude of other structures totally worth exploring!

Celebrating the 2018 “Women in Design”

By Christie Chen


At Design-Calendar, we love to celebrate influential women in the design industry. Organized by top B2B design publications, which includes Hospitality Design, design:retail, Healthcare Design, Environments for Aging, and Contract, the inaugural Women in Design program spotlighted many such female movers and shakers. On October 30th, their names were announced at a special luncheon celebration. Keynote presenter Barbara Bradley Baekgaard, cofounder of Vera Bradley, spoke at the event.

This year’s inaugural Women in Design honorees included:

Deborah Berke

Partner, Deborah Berke Partners, New York

Ava Bradley

Creative Director and Global Senior Vice President of Design, Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants, San Francisco

Lauren Geremia

Principal, Geremia Design, San Francisco

Dina Griffin

President, Interactive Design Architects, Chicago

Robin Guenther

Principal, Perkins+Will

Suzen Heeley

Executive Director, Design and Construction, Facilities Management Division, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York

Cindi Kato

Vice President and Global Retail Business Development Director, CallisonRTKL, Seattle; President, PAVE Board

Margaret McMahon

Senior Vice President, Managing Director, Wimberly Interiors, New York

Jane Rohde

Principal, JSR Associates, Maryland

Roya Sullivan

National Director, Window Presentation, Macy’s, New York


Photo Courtesy of Hospitality Design

A Matter of Things

By danielle


We stopped by the Somerset House during the London Design Biennale to visit our friends at and check out A Matter of Things.  Curated by Małgorzata Wesołowska, it reveals the inextricable link between emotion and experience through the lens of Polish design. The exhibit is particularly poignant as it coincides with the 100th anniversary of Poland’s renewed independence.

A Matter of Things is the result of a nation-wide open call that the Adam Mickiewicz Institute and National Museum in Warsaw announced in November 2017. The winning exhibition was selected from sixteen entries submitted both by recognized curatorial voices and young curators, by a jury which included London Design Biennale Artistic Director, Christopher Turner. Małgorzata Wesołowska, the curator with the winning proposal, invited a team of designers, including Studio Noodi Design, Studio Szpunar and graphic designer and illustrator Michał Loba to work on the exhibition as a creative team. The resulting showcase explores the fluid meaning of items according to the place, time, language, and culture in which they are presented.


DIFFA’s Picnic by Design

By Katie Suh


With dazzling views of New York City’s evening skyline, people from the design community gathered for the 7th annual Picnic by Design fundraiser held by DIFFA (Design Industries Fighting AIDS) last Wednesday at the Viacom Lounge & Terrace.

Guests enjoying the extravagant views of New York City’s evening skyline. Photography by Erik Bardin.

Guests enjoying the extravagant views of New York City’s evening skyline. Photography by Erik Bardin.

Picnic by Design is DIFFA’s summer celebration. It offers design, food, and fun all to make a “DIFFArence” for a worthy cause. Designers, manufacturers, and artists collaborate to create “picnic baskets” filled with exclusive tickets and designer goodies, based on a particular theme. These baskets are then bid on by DIFFA supporters in which the funds eventually go to grant-making efforts that help nonprofits battle HIV/AIDS. The theme of this year’s Picnic by Design was Broadway, making the already spectacular event even more theatrical. This year the event surpassed last year’s record of $50,000, raising a total of $60,000! “You ask designers to create a simple basket, and you get a full-blown picnic extravaganza!” comments DIFFA Chair Cindy Allen.

This year’s Picnic by Design Participants for the “Picnic Baskets”:

Check out some of these picnic baskets below:

Vanessa Deleon Associates: Breakfast at Tiffany’s Photography by Erik Bardin.

Vanessa Deleon Associates: Breakfast at Tiffany’s Photography by Erik Bardin.

Knoll + Studios Architecture: Wicked

Knoll + Studios Architecture: Wicked

Michele Alfano Design: Dear Evan Hanson

Michele Alfano Design: Dear Evan Hanson

Matouk: Spongebob

Matouk: Spongebob

McCory Interiors: Mama Mia

McCory Interiors: Mama Mia

About DIFFA:

DIFFA was founded over 3 decades ago with the mission to raise awareness and grant funds to organizations that “provide treatment, direct care services, preventive education programs and advocacy for individuals impacted by HIV/ AIDs”. Over the past 30 years, it has grown from a grassroots organization to a national foundation based in New York City with chapters and community partners all over the United States. Over the years, these associations, working together, have “provided more than $43 million to hundreds of HIV/AIDS organizations nationwide”.

“I first got involved with DIFFA over 20 years ago… It was this amazing revelation that design could make a difference. To this day, it remains a cathartic tool for designers to see their creations do good in the world.” -Co-Chair David Rockwell


Left: Co-Chair David Rockwell, Center: Executive Director Dawn Roberson, Right: Executive Director of Broadway Cares and Equity Fights AIDS Tom Viola. Photography by Erik Bardin.

[ASPIRE Design Tour] Panel Discussion: How to Earn Press?

By Pei Shang


How do you get the media to notice your unique talents in a seemingly ceaseless sea of designers? How do you successfully get your message out? Those who are interested in the answers to these questions may want to check out the programming during next week’s ASPIRE Design Tour!

Coming to NYC, August 22-23, ASPIRE Design Tour’s two full days of programming and events will include a panel discussion on “How to earn press” at the Complete Tile Collection on August 23, 2018 (12:30 – 3:00 pm).  Moderated by the Senior Vice President of Novità Communications, Danielle McWilliams, a lively panel of industry experts will share their insider tips on getting audiences’ favor. Panelists include Lifestyle & Interiors Editorial Photographer, Brittany Ambridge, widely published Interior Designer, Mary Douglas Drysdale, and ASPIRE DESIGN AND HOME Editor in Chief, Amy Sneider.


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Here’s a little bit more about the panelists:

Danielle McWilliams

With 14+ years of experience in design public relations, McWilliams has a keen marking insight, strategic communication skills and extensive national and international experience. She serves as the PR Chair of the New York Metro Chapter of ASID.

Brittany Ambridge

Ambridge’s editorial work has appeared in publications such as The New York Times, Vogue, and Architectural Digest, while her portraiture also captures tastemakers like Eva Chen, Christy Turlington, and fashion designer Rebecca Minkoff.

Mary Douglas Drysdale

Drysdale’s career and project work have consistently been honored by the design industry. Drysdale’s projects have garnered over 60 career covers both in the US and abroad. She was named 5 years running as one of House Beautiful’s Top 100 of American Design.

Amy Sneider

Sneider has been the Editor in Chief of ASPIRE DESIGN AND HOME since 2010. “ASPIRE represents quiet and varied ideas of beauty and shelter,” said Sneider. “We like to savor the subjects and the images, with large dedications to their art/talent and create conversations.”



NYCxDESIGN 2018: What You Can Expect

By Nancy Carmona


Although it is early on, NYCxDESIGN is preparing for its biggest year yet in 2018!  May 11th-23rd NYCxDESIGN will hold its citywide celebration of design, highlighting the creative, cultural, and educational opportunities in NYC through a variety of exhibitions, talks, and open studios.  On January 12th, The New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) gave us a glimpse of what’s to come this year at a press conference for NYCxDESIGN in the Brooklyn Museum. 


Opportunities for New & Distinguished Designers

Whether you’re a student or a celebrated designer, there are several opportunities to have your work showcased in NYCxDESIGN this year!

NYCxDESIGN 2017 Tech Office Winner. Photography by Garrett Rowland.

Brooklyn Designs, an event showcasing the collaborative spirit of design, architecture, and art while celebrating Brooklyn’s unique style, will showcase accepted designs from a range of categories at the Brooklyn Museum on May 12-13. 

NYCxDESIGN will partner up with Interior Design magazine and ICFF to deliver the NYCxDESIGN Awards on May 21st, with submissions opening up next month.

Frog Design, focused on creating cultural change through design, will hold a design competition which will include illustrators, architects, woodworkers, and furniture and fashion designers.

WantedDesign is teaming up with Rado  to award the Rado Star Prize with the theme of “Design Inspired by Nature”.  Submissions are open until March and the winner alongside nine finalists will be showcased at WantedDesign Manhattan during NYCxDESIGN.


Educational Opportunities & Talks

There will be a variety of opportunities to learn about and get excited for the future of design both in NYC and internationally!

NYCxDESIGN Q&A with Cindy Allen & Edward Hogikyan.

Domino Sugar Factory will hold a panel event and a tour for its newly designed Domino Park.

Design Trust for Public Space, concentrated on making an a positive change in New York’s public spaces, will hold a discussion and tour for El-Space, a design project set to create a better experience for pedestrians, greater resiliency through changing seasons, and improved lighting.

WantedDesign Manhattan will include conversations with Design Milk, Modenus Media, and others to be announced.

DESIGN TALKS NYC, in part of NYCxDESIGN’s DESIGN PAVILION, will host design leaders in Times Square who will discuss the role of design for the future in several talks from May 14th-18th.



Of course, exhibits, showrooms, and open studios are the bulk of experience at NYCxDESIGN!

ICFF 2017.

Red Hook Design will hold neighborhood walks, open studios, and an exhibition which will feature creators of furniture, glass, textile, and ceramic.

Brookfield Place, in collaboration with artist Carlos Rolón, will show a range of bicycle designs, celebrating bicycles as a serious means of transportation in cities for the future.

ICFF, one of the largest trade shows at NYCxDESIGN, will feature over 3,600 interior designers, architects, retailers, distributors, developers, and visual merchandisers.  Showcasing the newest in high-end luxury furniture and materials, the 30th annual ICFF will include French furniture designs from names such as  Philippe Starck and Jean-Paul Gaultier, and 180 galleries of handmade German art objects.  Collective Design, the New York City based fair showcasing the diversity of material design, will also be launching “Collective Concept @ ICFF”, a platform for selected independent designers to share what they consider “inspirational” and “alternative” thinking.

WantedDesign Manhattan will be hosting a variety of exhibits including their main exhibit, Lookbook, an in-person portfolio for top high-end North American designers to showcase their latest products.  The winners of Launch Pad, the competition for emerging talent in furniture and lighting design, and the Rado Star Prize will also be showcased at WantedDesign Manhattan.  Look out for more exciting exhibitions to be announced for both WantedDesign Manhattan and its sister event, WantedDesign Brooklyn, in the coming months!

Parsons School of Design, Pratt Institute, School of Visual Arts, Fashion Institute of Technology, and the Cooper Union will host a variety of events and exhibits including student works and interactive exhibits.

The Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, Museum of Modern Art, Museum of Arts and Design, and Museum at FIT will open exhibits showcasing work in a variety of mediums, from photography to fashion designs.

Design districts including East Midtown Partnership, Tribeca Design District, SoHo Design District, and NoMad Design District will have several events and showrooms displaying home decor and decorative art pieces.

The Times Square Alliance, whose goal is to improve and preserve the creative energy of Times Square, will launch prototypes from a program to commission new designs from NYC designers for public spaces, with Times Square as the lab space.

In addition to these events, you can expect plenty of opportunities to purchase your own unique pieces of art and furniture and enjoy the food and drinks of the city. You can also look forward to the list of events growing larger in the coming months leading up to NYCxDESIGN!  Check out the video below to get a better glimpse of what you can expect at NYCxDESIGN 2018, and don’t forget to follow our instagram for more updates on NYCxDESIGN 2018 and other design events!

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