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December 22, 2008

Comfort and Security in On-Trend Paint Colors for 2009

Consumer Desires for Comfort and Security Drive 2009 Paint Color Trends

“One of the overriding paint trends in 2009 will be the return to elemental colors,” said Lynn Ludlow, Color Guild color consultant. “A focus on the state of the global economy, as well as the environment will bring consumers back to neutral colors, such as muted yellows, soft grays, café browns and khakis, in the home.”

Color Guild 2009 paint trends are derived by researching and observing color trends and social issues around the globe, including ecological issues, technology discoveries, political issues and even sporting events.

According to Robert Shapiro, Color Guild executive director, there are five main paint color trends that will be hitting homes in 2009:  Ease, Earthwatch, Exploration, Evolution and Expression.

Ease: For too many consumers, life is fast-paced and complex. The Ease color collection focuses on the trend to simplify and slow down life. This color palette of soft grays, muted greens and soothing lilac allows consumers to bring peace and serenity back into their home.

Color Guild’s Ease color palette includes: Leisure, Simplistic, Recoup, Natural, Purity, Chill and Response.

Earthwatch: Sustainability is now a global initiative for every citizen on the planet. From fresh water to clean air, the Earthwatch color collection re-introduces natural colors as a simple reminder of how to make planet Earth a better home.

The Earthwatch color palette allows consumers to surround themselves with organic colors featuring earth tones blended with ocean blue.

Color Guild’s Earthwatch color palette includes: Ozone, Element, Flora, Continental, Tidal, Mineral Dust and Magical Moon.

Exploration: Our world continues to shrink, while our social conscience expands. More than ever, consumers are traveling beyond their home borders to learn and do more. These experiences are resulting in a blend of cultural influences that are filtering into the home. The Exploration palette is an assortment of colors that are hopeful and optimistic, including café browns, khakis and deep reds.

Color Guild’s Exploration color palette includes: Discover, Journey, Navigate, Darwin, Sahara Fire, Columbus and Trek.

Evolution: The global focus on reducing waste by recycling and repurposing products is changing the behavior of consumers and businesses alike. The Evolution color palette reflects this lifecycle focus with muted yellows and taupes.

Color Guild’s Evolution color palette includes: Metaphor, Progress, Advancement, Perfection, Maturation, Betterment and Influence.

Expression: While we all reach out to protect and serve our planet, we must also maintain our own individual identities. This trend reveals itself through a palette of vibrant colors the Color Guild has coined “Expression” that range from organic greens, and colorful peaches to dramatic purples.

Color Guild’s Expression color palette includes: Personality Plus, Organic, Drama, Symbol, Henna, Thumbprint and Unique.

Consumers can get the inside scoop on color trends in the pocket-size Color Canvas Collection card, color disks and paints at Color Guild member locations. Visit for a list of members.

Category: COLOR | Permalink | Add Your Comment (0) | TrackBack

Foscarini Wins Swiss Design Award for Fiber Evolution

At the Designers’ Saturday (Langenthal, 8-9 November 2008), Foscarini was awarded a prize in the “Best Space” category with its Fiber Evolution display, staged in Ruckstuhl’s workspace.


Foscarini, the Italian lighting company, was awarded Best Environment this past November at the Designers’ Saturday in Langenthal, Switzerland. Christoph Gantenbein, from the architects’ practice of Christ & Gantenbein of Zurich and member of the jury, gave the prize to Carlo Urbinati Ricci and Alessandro Vecchiato, founders and owners of Foscarini, and to Vicente Garcia Jimenez, who was in charge of the display. ‘We decided to award the prize to Foscarini for the way in which they interfaced with an actual featured space," tells Gantebein, "The fibreglass and carbon fibre shapes related harmoniously to the structural and architectural elements of Ruckstuhl’s warehouse, making original, even extreme, use of the space’s potential. This stripped away the superfluous without focussing entirely on the product." This was the first time Designers’ Saturday awarded a prize for the best displays.

At the show, 60 international exhibitors were given space to create installations in the workspaces of local Langenthal firms. Fiber Evolution, shown here in Switzerland for the first time, was presented to big audiences with much acclaim in Europe and the USA this past year. Developed by Marc Sadler in conjunction with Foscarini, Fiber Evolution is comprised of large sculptures made from different successful product families such as Mite, Tite (2001 Golden Compass Award winner) and most recently, Twiggy. The display in Switzerland was adapted for Ruckstuhl’s warehouse, a company that works with natural fibres to create quality rugs and carpets.

Through Fiber Evolution, Foscarini was able to use this context to express the message that lighting, when integrated into architecture, can become an emotive experience, even in large spaces. Big luminous sculptures reveal each light’s strong personality when used in multiples as we see here. This message is particularly directed to architects who can rely on help from Foscarini’s lighting in their contract planning.

The jury for this award consisted, in addition to Gantenbein, of Eelke Trappschuh, publicist, Jorg Boner, designer, Karin Schulte, editor and Iria Degen interior architect.

Category: MODERN LIGHTING | Permalink | Add Your Comment (0) | TrackBack



In their quest to design functional furniture around themes of urban life, DIY, and sustainability, design students Jeffrey Gerlach and Andrew Stanley created DPW ADK furniture.

Gerlach says, "Born from a spontaneous need and evolved from a simple vision, the Department of Public Worth Adirondack Chair is true up-cycling."

Just find the parts, follow directions, and take a seat.

Category: GREEN DESIGN | Permalink | Add Your Comment (0) | TrackBack

December 21, 2008

Oh Christmas Tree

Venice's Murano Island, know for it's glass work, is home to the tallest glass tree in the world. Sculpted by master glass blower Simone Cenedese, the artistic tree is a modern tribute to the holiday season.

Glass tree 2
Glass tree 3
Glass tree 4

-- allie

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Category: ALLISON JAWORSKI, CONTEMPORARY HOLIDAYS | Permalink | Add Your Comment (0) | TrackBack

December 19, 2008

Gift Ideas for Modern Men

If Lifetime has taught us anything about men it's that we can't change them. When it comes to Christmas, that means we might as well just give them what they want, and new information shows that what they want is a "Man-Cave."

If they don't already have one, chances are their buddies do. According to a poll by, 40 percent of the respondents say there’s now a “Man Room” or “Man Cave” in their home.  Another 13 percent said their cave is in the planning or construction phase.

If your man already has an at home Cave, think about giving him a Man-Cave accessory like upgraded speakers, a contemporary recliner, or modern ottoman. If he's sharing an entertainment space with the rest of the family, think of something that would give his personality an imprint on the space. One big idea...76 percent of poll respondents say a flat screen is a must for their Man-Cave.

Looking for ideas on Man Cave decor? Check out this over-the-top designer Man Room.

Category: CAROLINE BARRY, CONTEMPORARY HOLIDAYS, HOME THEATER, YOUR PLACE | Permalink | Add Your Comment (0) | TrackBack

December 18, 2008

West Elm

A holiday gift from West Elm...

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December 16, 2008

Cutting Edge Modern Design...


...for curtains. Curtain ring collections from kontextür, a new company from designer Kenneth Schiller, were conceived and created as "irreverent, sexy, fashion-forward curtain rings."  Made for use on both window and shower curtains, these accents show up in electric hues with architectural lines and bold shapes and definitely offer consumers and designers original options we haven't had before.

Schiller hopes that in these difficult economic times, the collections also offer us a way to change the look of a room cost-effectively and add a little "bling" without breaking the bank.  A good thought, if the economically oppressed are willing to part with  $75 - $95 for a set of 12 curtain rings.

Category: ART & ACCESSORIES, BATH & SPA, CAROLINE BARRY, FLOOR & WINDOW COVERING | Permalink | Add Your Comment (0) | TrackBack

Be a wonder woman without the wonder

A few of us gals at Pure Contemporary like to fancy ourselves wonder women. We work full-time in a male dominated field, we have homes, children, pets, bursting calendars, and social lives. And we do it alone! We're not single, we are just a few of the many whose husbands travel for a living. And I don't mean a quick jaunt to Chicago here, a meeting in Houston there. I'm talking about 35 to 40 weeks a year.

We know how to pay bills and balance a checkbook, mow the lawn and change air filters, fill our tires and repair minor plumbing gaffes, cook a meal for ten, reboot a downed website, and manage to do it all with semi-perfect hair while on a conference call with a bad connection.

And, like all modern women, we are constantly searching for gizmos and gadgets to make our livers easier.

Introducing the WallMarker. The piece of arrow-shaped chalk sticks to the back of a picture or mirror. Once the decor is correctly aligned just press down and the arrow marks the spot. No more crooked frames, no more spackling numerous incorrect nail holes, and absolutely no more waiting for our husbands to get home to do it. Because, let's face it, the one thing we don't have time for is waiting.


-- allie

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Modern Trophy Wall


For those of you still not over the "stag" craze, I give you the Big Five collection, an update of August Göhring's 1939 designs.  The Ivory glazed porcelain on a a wooden mount sells for $2,030 and friends are available. The Big Five also includes a cat, rhino, elephant and wild boar.

Available through NymphenbergUSA.

Category: ART & ACCESSORIES, CAROLINE BARRY | Permalink | Add Your Comment (1) | TrackBack

Haute Couture Tea Service


With his HAUTE COUTURE tea service, Konstantin Grcic has focused on a specific detail from the process of porcelain production. All Porzellan Manufaktur Nymphenburg's products that cannot be shaped on potter's wheels are cast by hand from "slip", which is liquefied porcelain paste. The plaster moulds needed for this work usually consist of several wedges that during the drying process produce thin seams at their joins. These are conventionally regarded as imperfections and later removed by hand. But Konstantin Grcic has elevated these demoulding seams into a feature on his plain tea service. A finely dotted line in the shape of a seam borders the individual pieces as a relief.

Category: ART & ACCESSORIES, CAROLINE BARRY, MODERN DINING, MODERN KITCHEN | Permalink | Add Your Comment (0) | TrackBack

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