Summer 2011 buzz
magnificent flying machine
Let your thoughts take flight while toiling away at this spectacular new aviator wing desk from Restoration Hardware’s dramatic new Aviator Collection. Taking its inspiration from the streamlined fighter planes of World War II, the sleek form, mimicking the bent wing of a plane, appears as if poised for take-off. Featuring a polished aluminum patchwork exterior and steel screws, it is built around a solid wood frame and offers three roomy canvas-lined shelves. Available at Restoration Hardware in White Plains or restorationhardware.com; it is priced at $2,195.
On Sail Seating
With the stateside launch of this unique new luxury chair by Norway’s century-old furniture store, Hødnebø, you can now set sail for horizons unknown without leaving the comfort—and high-def TV, surround sound, and Wi-Fi—of your own home. Featuring authentic new or repurposed sails and a spring steel frame designed for natural pliability, the Spinnaker, says the company’s CEO, Thomas Christensen, “simulates the feeling of sailing on a cloud.”
The chairs are custom-made; customers can select cushion fabric, frame color, and design. Also offered: matching ottomans. The chair retails for $2,950 and can be ordered through Maven Retail Partners at (805) 482-2900.
For more information: spinnaker.no.
From Designer Purses to Decorative Pillows
Belle Boulevard bedding by Kate Spade New York
Way before Will’s stylish new princess, there was another Kate who attracted attention for her smart fashion sense. Kate Spade first hooked us with her handbags, then her apparel, and today, with the debut of a charming new bedding collection, Kate Spade New York, she has us hooked even more.
Accented with such signature finishes as ribbon, appliqués, embroidery, and tassels, the collection features soothing hues of white and ivory with pops of black, platinum, and chartreuse in a trio of sweet patterns. These include Belle Boulevard, whose oversized embroidered bow is a nod to the iconic element on Spade’s bridal tabletop line; June Lane, with its fresh, embroidered chartreuse dragonflies on a crisp, white field; and Piedmont Park, which marries a sweet floral print with playful polka dots in a classic ivory-and-black color scheme. Offered at Bloomingdale’s in White Plains and Bed, Bath & Beyond in Port Chester and other locations; prices range from $125 to $500.
Kitchen Designers’ Fave Kitchen Flooring
Stone, wood, ceramic tile—the choices abound. So just what type of flooring works best in the heart—and command central—of the home? We asked local kitchen designers for their recommendations.
“You can’t do wrong with porcelain tiles; they're easy to clean.”
—Arthur Bogue, designer, Bilotta Kitchens in Briarcliff Manor
“Hardwood flooring adds warmth to the space. It's easier more forgiving in an active kitchen, and maintaining it is not as difficult as people think.”
—Jennifer Howard, owner, JWH Design and Cabinetry in Rye
“I like both wood and stone or tiles, depending on the project. I’d choose wood, for example, for continuity, if the surrounding rooms already have wood floors. But tiles are more sensible because they are more durable and easier to maintain.”
—Ryan Ko, owner, Today’s Kitchens in Hartsdale
“The most durable floor is probably a porcelain tile, while a slate floor is probably best for hiding dirt. The most luxurious feeling tile would be some type of natural stone, for example, limestone or travertine.”
—Jason Landau, owner,
Amazing Spaces in Briarcliff Manor
“Ceramic or procelain tile is durable. Seventy-five to eighty-five percent of the time, it’s going to be ceramic or procelain tile.”
—John Bordonaro, owner, Bordonaro Remodeling in Pleasantville
Since turning her attention to home furnishings, former costume designer Marsia Holzer, who worked on the Broadway production
of Hair and with the Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd, and Bruce Springsteen, has found inspiration in a variety of unexpected places. Her newest collection of table, floor, and hanging lighting fixtures, she says, grew out of two seemingly unrelated themes—an exhibition of samurai costumes at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and her fascination with crumpled paper. Particularly striking is Holzer’s Dollop hanging lamp created from torn and crumpled recycled washi paper. “Washi paper is very durable. Even if the lights are dented, they just pop right back into shape.” Select designs are offered at Mariani Gardens in Armonk and the entire collection is available at Marsia Holzer Studio (399 Washington St, New York 212-431-9343).
For more info: marsiaholzer.com.
flight of fancy
Welcome fine-feathered visitors to your garden with this graceful new ceramic birdbath. Designed by Barbara Barry, it is hand crafted by ceramic artisans in the Pacific Northwest. Dressed in a high-fired glaze finish, the glossy clay bowl rests upon a delicately grooved frame that gradually expands to a cast bronze ring base. The basin is fitted with a hand-carved bronze branch; finished with impressions and etchings that mimic natural markings, it makes a particularly inviting perch for a passing robin or cardinal. Measuring 20.5 inches wide, 20.5 inches deep, and 29 inches high, the bird bath costs $2,303 and is available at McGuire New York in Manhattan; (212) 689-1565.
art buying 101
Crabapple No. 4, an archival photograph on Japanese paper by Jeri Eisenberg ($2,600), offered by markelfinearts.com
How can you tell a reputable dealer from a sleaze? Check out these tips from Kathryn Markel, a Bronxville resident with a Chelsea gallery and a seasonal gallery in Bridgehampton, New York.
AVOID any dealer who sells Salvador Dali. Other artists to avoid: Tarkay, Erte, Earle, Neiman, and Agam; all are overpriced.
AVOID the “Limited Edition Print” and any dealer who sells them. They are nothing but overpriced, signed posters.
AVOID the dealer who talks investment and offers “Certificates of Authenticity.” They are usually phony—and lead you to believe that you have an original piece of work when, in reality, you may not.
AVOID galleries located in shopping malls, tourist areas, cruises, and airports. For some reason, the average person only thinks about buying art on vacation. Although there are exceptions, many galleries take advantage of that.
AVOID buying art from the framer in your local shopping mall. Again, there are exceptions, but he’s probably not the best person with whom to spend any serious amount of money, as he usually knows little about the realities of the broader art market.
Visit markelfinearts.com to view work from the artists Markel represents.
Cool, crisp, and clean looking—white’s never been hotter in fashion. Taking its cue from the runways, JAB Anstoetz, one of the world’s largest fabric distribution companies, has introduced White Passion, a gorgeous new collection of 48 fabrics in 49 shades of white. Key design elements include curved geometric shapes, irregular stripes, puckering, and subtle wrinkling. (Not included? Muddy paw prints and crayon scribbles. You’re on your own there.) The collection, which ranges from $45 to $238 per yard, is available to the trade at the JAB Anstoetz showroom in Manhattan’s Design & Decorators Building.
For more info: jab.us.
Diane von F devotees now can dress their tables in the wrap-dress icon’s inimitable glam style with the launch of her striking new tabletop line. Inspired by both the décor in her own home and her contemporary and vintage fashion designs, the collection’s pieces mix and match to create a relaxed, boho-like vibe that’s perfect for warm-weather entertaining. Featured are bold colors like tamarind yellow and avocado green; sleek geometric shapes; eye-catching zebra, floral, and mosaic patterns; and highly glazed finishes. Prices for the collection, available at Bloomingdale’s in White Plains and online at bloomingdales.com, range from $25 to $150.
For more info: dvf.com.
A Rose of Another Color
How could you have anything but sweet dreams drifting off to slumber on Sweet Rose, the newest bedding collection from DKNY Home? Featuring a soothing powder-blue-and-white color palette that evokes the gentlest of breezes, the new offerings feature a fresh interpretation of a classic floral silhouette on ultra-soft, 100-percent cotton jersey. The centerpiece of the collection is a charming vintage-inspired duvet cover featuring clusters of powder-blue rose appliqués on a clean white background. Other components include 300-thread-count cotton sateen sheeting, pillowcases printed with a soft blue rose pattern, coordinating shams, and decorative solid pillows featuring such textural accents as diagonal rows of powder-blue pleats, white pleated bands, and rose appliqués. The line runs from $30 to $180 and is available at Bloomingdale’s in White Plains.
For more information: dknyhome.com.
Think of it as Botox for your sheets: just a spritz or two of Downy Wrinkle Releaser, on creased and crumpled sheets and you can smooth them away with your hands in a snap. No iron needed. Smells fresh, too;
$7 at Walmart.
Best Builders: Architect-Recommended Contractors
“Every architect prefers to work with their favorite builders,” says Rye architect Paul Benowitz. But just try and pry those names from them, and most politely refuse. We did coax a handful of local architects to open up—here are the names of some of the building contractors they recommend.
A.M. Craft, Inc.
Cum Laude Group, Inc. (Paul Fontana)
JJ Fuscaldo, Inc. Builders (Joseph Fuscaldo)
Katsura Construction, Inc. (Terry Kominami)
McCormack General Contracting Corporation
NGI Development Corporation (Nick Girardi)
Outstanding Home, Inc. (Lee Handler)
Suburban Construction Company of NY
Many thanks to the following architects for their recommendations:
Paul Benowitz, Shah Architects in Rye;
Choura Architecture in White Plains
G. Darcy Gibson
G. Darcy Gibson RA in Rye
Mark R. LePage
Five Cat Studio Architecture in Pleasantville
Osmolskis Architecture in Pelham
Stephen Tilly Architect in Dobbs Ferry
With research by Maggie Bacon and Madasyn Czebiniak