The show was held in the Stalinist Shanghai Exhibition Center, built in 1955 by the Russians and given the name Sino-Soviet Friendship Building. This wedding cake of a building is fronted by a very elaborate colonnade flanked by 2 wings on either side.
Cole & Son provided the marvellous Nuvolette wallpaper as the backdrop for Beijing artist Guanci’s Rainbow Angels. I had a lovely chat to the Cole & Sons Marketing lady- who loved all our Cole and Son projects and explained to me in great detail, how wallpaper is made and the different types of printing methods.
The Fritz Hansen display was full of covetable treasures. The acquisition of an Egg chair is on my wish list- just don’t tell my husband!
The HAY stall is always fun and incredibly busy! And no wonder- they have the best range of furniture and accessories to suit every budget.
images via eclectic cool
One of the reasons I wanted to visit Design Shanghai was the opening of the new HAY store in hip Tianzifang. They had a very cool party to celebrate their opening. It made me want to go shopping, then I remembered I could buy it all from my own store!
images via shotbytaun
image by eclectic cool
I stayed at the very cool Waterhouse on the Bund designed by the very talented Neri+Hu. The lobby was gorgeous, lots of rough concrete and a fab leather reception desk with a Tracey Emin neon above. I got a lovely room upgrade ( thanks Waterhouse), though I have to warn you- you have to share the room with someone you love because the bathroom is all glass!
We’ve been a bit quiet because we have been visiting the inaugural Design Shanghai show. Vendors mainly from Europe attended with a few local designers thrown in. The halls were split into contemporary and classic design with quite a variety of vendors thrown in- from furniture to lighting to rugs and wall coverings.
We were thrilled to meet so many inspirational makers. It seemed to be a big success, if attendance was anything to go by, with not only buyers attending but also many students and lovers of design.
Not a very pretty picture but a very satisfying and inventive IKEA hack. Hope they put a board down between the mattress and the shelf- they’re kind of poky.
This is a pretty elegant use of the old expedit- I have this setup in my storeroom- it’s not as pretty though. This is a great use of HKD1000!
In the storeroom I have also filled some of my Expedits with little baskets and tags. Loving the use of the small expedit as bench seating though I would have made the seat cushions a bit thicker. Those expedits are hard as well as sharp.
Very nice and feminine office nook on a budget!
This looks a lot more expensive that it probably was- though a Beni rug is always sure to lift a space.
A very different look here. I hope with the money they saved on the bookshelf they used it on a real Herman Miller or Vitra Eames chair and ottoman. Some would argue that the Expedit ranks on a similar level to the Eames chair. There are certainly more of them around. And no one wants to buy a copy!
Nice space divider.
We stock this marvellous Cole & Son wallpaper. I like how they used the excess to cover the magazine containers- very cool. Colour coding gone crazy- I like it.
You’ll need some VERY strong hooks for these. I would have put supports too- because even though they are made out of chipboard and lacquer- they are so heavy.
images via inthralld
I liked this tweet. I remember assembling one just after my second child was born. It’s a miracle after that argument we had a third one. One of the best things about HK is that you can get assembly guys to put up your shelves. Want to watch something magic? Watch the IKEA assemblers put together an Expedit in under 20 minutes!
Ahh! the IKEA Expedit bookshelf. It such a classic design and such a best seller that it might be a shock to a few of you that it is being discontinued. IKEA will replace this popular model with the new Kallax shelf, which looks pretty similar and has the same internal dimensions but with child-friendly corners as the existing one was deemed too sharp.
Record (LP) owners in Germany are so incensed they started their own facebook page. Currently it has 21,000 likes. That’s a lot of incensed record owners as the internal dimensions of the Expedit are perfect for vinyl.
It’s being phased out slowly, so if you are an IKEA Expedit lover (you don’t need to hide, you are one amongst many- me included) rush out and stock up!
We’re totally in love with the graceful curves of the Eva chair by the Swedish Modernist designer, Kerstin Holmquist. The chair is fully upholstered in Kvadrat Balder with legs in either walnut or oak.
The whole collection: from left the Eva, The Adam and the Paradiset sofa. Elegant and sophisticated- the chairs will suit both more classic to mid century interiors. Gorgeous!
Available Autumn 2014-
Images via GUBI
I know, I know- I have been pretty silent about all the cool things that I saw and bought at Maison. If you follow us on facebook you would had a few small sneak peeks but some of the best designs need more examination than 300 characters!
One of the standouts were the re-editions of the beautiful designs by Kerstin Holmquist,who created a unique collection of upholstered pieces for NK – Nordiska Kompaniet in 1956-57. She was employed at NK Triva, a furniture workshop and architect studio where she created this collection for one of her many exhibitions. She named her pieces inspired by Paradiset (Swedish for Eden or Paradise).
The first piece in the collection was the feminine lounge chair – Eva- in pink and later followed its masculine counterpart, Adam. To compliment the two she later also created a sofa – the Paradiset sofa. Gubi has revived these designs with great aplomb- they complement their existing collections beautifully.
Unfortunately, we have to wait to get our hot little hands on these babies- they will be available for purchase and ordering only in June…
the iconic series 7 chair is available in a myriad of colours and wood finishes. I am quite particular to this version
image via fritzhansen
arne jacobsen- the designer, not only of the Series 7, the Egg, Ant and Swan chairs.
image via cimmerman
The stackable Series 7 became an icon when it was draped with the infamous Christine Keeler in the 60s.
image via cimmerman
equally at home in a kids bedroom as in a more austere dining room
images via fritzhansen
I’m quite fond of this version, made by Hermes for a charity event. It raised USD18K at auction.
images via cabinet shop
This is truly an iconic chair. Ever copied since 1955, it suits most interiors- from the most casual to the most formal. The original is made by Fritz Hansen. The quality of its construction and materials is far superior to any copy- so make sure if you do love it- get the original.
We take for granted, here in HK, our urban sprawl. The tiny spaces we live in, which would be unacceptable in our home countries, are ordinary. But there is beauty in the colours and rhythm of life- the repetition of shape only defined by the odd pile of hanging washing- that gives an enduring charm and humanism to the monoliths we live in.
For us here in HK we can stare out the window and wonder about the glimpses into others’ lives that are so compelling, but for all of you that don’t live here, you can check out Michael Wolf’s latest exhibition of photographs of HK at the Flowers Gallery in London.
The Architecture of Density
21 Cork Street
London W1S 3LZ
Monday to Saturday
10 to 6pm
Happy Year of the Horse!
image via rifle paper
We’re a big fan of Garance Doré’s illustrations and were happy to see that she has collaborated with Rifle Paper to produce stationery, cards, phone cases and other paper ephemera. We’ll order some for the store once they are released so stay tuned…
I quite enjoyed Alex Proud’s recent article in the Daily Telegraph on ‘Shoredification’. Head to the main part of the blog to read the full definition, but basically it is the hipsterisation of an area. Being a hipster is apparently kind of uncool. My 16 year old daughter calls me a hipster when she wants to insult me.
One of the first signs of gentrification is that the cool stores move in. Labour and Wait is quite the most stylish household goods store (and I mean brushes and brooms) that you can find. But in true hipster style they sell clothes too. Yep, you know the type- usually made in utilitarian fabrics consisting of barn jackets, jeans, chinos and well cut t-shirts. The location- in an old corner pub- is pretty cool. But that doesn’t hide the fact that it is on a pretty ordinary street- a few steps away from a salubrious housing estate.
I really wanted to like Pitfield, I had heard so much about it but I found their range of vintage homewares and a few contemporary things a bit boring (& expensive). They also had a cafe and I have to confess that I so hungry that I devoured a pretty ordinary piece of red velvet cake and a weak coffee. What a waste of calories. That pub across the way there was pretty nice though. Notice all the real estate signs hanging from the window- a sure sign that prices are rising.
Even the graffiti was kind of cool….
The restaurants were kind of the same too…concrete floor (check), industrial spaces (check), exposed brickwork (check), wood and steel details (double check)- you find this kind of interior in any hip area of town in any city in the world. However, do check out the suspended Chicken and Cow in Formeldahyde by Damien Hirst. That is certainly different.
images by eclecticcool
Hostem is a really cool mens store. I think I have written before about the tented interior by James Plumb. It’s the epitome of hipster chic, so long as you have loads of money. I looked at a pretty cool magnifying glass you could wear around your neck, but for GBP390 unfortunately it could not be mine.
image via coolhunting
image via acehotel
the very hip reception desk at the ACE Hotel London
You know you are in a truly hip area when an ACE Hotel moves in. Let me start by saying I quite like ACE Hotels. I love the one in Portland (so much fun) where the chain started. I am sure that the ACE Hotel group would hate for the hotels to be called a ‘chain’ (smacks of Best Western). But they all kind of look the same, even though they are different. From the photo booth in the lobby to the semi- industrial/vintage Portland interior, you could probably forget you were in London and think you were back in the US of A.
I know I sound very negative, but I have say I did like the hipster-ness of Shoreditch. I did go there 3 times in a 3 day trip- I had to visit the offices of Lee Broom and, I have to say, the breakfasts in the cafes there were pretty nice. I totally hear what Alex Proud is saying but there’s nothing wrong with a wander around an area with good clothes, great coffee and graffiti to really remind you that you are in a city. Cool fun + grit…wonderful!
Okay, this is pretty much a London term which I discovered in an article in the Daily Telegraph which you can read here.
It is described by writer, Alex Proud as this:
You find a previously unnoticed urban neighbourhood, ideally one that’s a bit down on its luck. Pioneer hipsters move in and coolhunters ensure it starts trending on Twitter. A year later, the mainstream media notices and, for the next 12 months, the neighbourhood is byword for urban cool.
It’s kind of similar to what is happening in Hong Kong- it could actually describe Po Hing Fong (PoHo) to a tee. But more about this later- let’s look at Shoreditch.
85 Redchurch Street,
London, E2 7DJ
Tues – Sun 11.00am to 6.00pm
Monday – Closed
31-35 Pitfield Street
London, N1 6HB
Everyday: Café 7am to 7pm Shop 11am to 7pm
32 Rivington Street
London, EC2A 3LX
Tuesday 11:30 am to 11:00 pm
The FOG art+design is the world’s only (?) art and design fair. Based in San Francisco, the proceeds of the show benefit the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA). You can check out some of the works available for sale at the gallery on Artsy. If you are in SF you should head down to see it this weekend and support your favourite contemporary art gallery. If you are not in SF, look on Artsy.
The GUBI reedition of the Greta Grossman task lamp
The original Greta Grossman task lamp from R20th Century
On my last visit to SF, I was impressed by not only the number of design stores but also the quality. I quite like SF design. It has a more relaxed style than its flashy LA counterpart. This interior by Douglas Durkin is actually in NY but I love its comfy sofas and warm palette.
images via Durkin Design
I would love to meet designer, Michael Boyd who came upon the Strick House by Oscar Neimeyer and sympathetically restored and rejuvenated it. Oscar Niemeyer needs a blog post of his own, but in case you don’t know, the Brazilian is one of the 20th Century’s leading architects. Boyd kept faithful to the original design but rejuvenated the garden and interior adding an enviable collection of mid century furniture and some fab art pieces. You can check out more shots from the interior here.
images by AD
Installation in Jessica Silverman Gallery of Amikam Toren’s show. Works by artists from Silverman’s gallery have been acquired by many major art galleries around the world. Silverman also works will designer Yves Behar in their fuseproject agency. Behar is another designer worthy of his own post. So much to write about-so little time!
image via jessica silverman gallery
We love a good art fair but the FOG fair in San Francisco has not only art but focuses on design as well. Held at the Fort Mason Center Festival Pavilion from the 17th to 19th January, with some special opening events held on the 15th and 16th, this years event celebrates the last 100 years of art and design. You can check out the full details here.
FOG Design+Art will feature prominent twentieth-century and contemporary design dealers from the Bay Area and across the country; a selection of leading modern and contemporary art galleries; and 21POP, a special installation exploring design and culinary art created by celebrated event designer Stanlee Gatti.
Some of my favourites galleries and design stores will be attending including Future Perfect and some leading galleries such as the Jessica Silverman Gallery.