Visit our other brands: danishdesignstore.com, adogslife.net

Design Books

Wednesday, December 11th, 2013

Favorite Design Books of 2013: The Bold

Becky

Posted by Becky | View all posts by Becky
Leave a comment!

Last week we showed you some of our favorite design books released in 2013, a group of five that focused on the beautiful – European antiques, flowers, gardens, marble floors, homes in the Hamptons, idyllic lakeside spots. Now we’d like to share some that feature the bold – international style, modern and contemporary, minimal and downright sublime  … here are five of our favorites from the past year. Note, these make great gifts for the architecture fans in your life; I’ve included the Amazon links for each book in case you’re interested in ordering.

Building Seagram by Phyllis Lambert. I’m not going to lie, ever since I took Richard Guy Wilson’s architectural history course, this has remained one of my top five favorite buildings. Lambert was there every step of the way, spearheaded the search for an architect that resulted in finding Mies, and her amazing tale will surprise you.

Le Corbusier: An Atlas of Modern Landscape, published by MoMA. This is an absolute MUST HAVE for any architectural library, you cannot begin to understand the roots of International Style without understanding Corb, and this may just be the most comprehensive tome on the market. Plus, more shallowly, it’s got a really cool spine that will pop on your shelves.

The Houses of Louis Kahn by George H. Marcus and William Whitaker. You may know all about the library at Exeter or the Salk Institute, but this book is a collection of Kahn’s lesser-known work, his residential homes. Again, I must declare this an architecture library must-have.

Tadao Ando: Houses by Philip Jodidio. Ando took concrete, known primarily for heavy brutalist architecture, and created thoughtful and ethereal buildings with it. A master of proportion and light, these qualities can best be seen (IMHO) in his residential designs, which are the focus of this beautiful book.

Nelson Byrd Woltz: Garden, Park, Community, Farm by Warren T. Bird Jr., Thomas Woltz and Elizabeth Meyer. Full disclosure: I used to know all of these people ten years ago. Warren made us chase him on four hour plant walks with his long fast stride, while we furiously scribbled down Latin names for plants and tried to sketch them at the same time (sometimes while climbing up the Blue Ridge Mountains; the class was a better workout than Barry’s Boot Camp), I knew Thomas Woltz socially and Beth Meyer was a horrible person to have to turn in a paper to, because she’s probably the best at writing about landscape architecture and landscape theory (she doesn’t get mired down in all that nonsensical archi-speak that plagues so many academic design writers). Anyway, now that that’s out of the way — the work of this firm is wide-ranging and puts into practice all the elements you dream about putting into practice back when you’re a wide-eyed idealistic student.

Any books you’d recommend for 2013? Please share any that caught your attention in the comments section.

Share

Friday, December 6th, 2013

Favorite Design Books Published in 2013: The Beautiful

Becky

Posted by Becky | View all posts by Becky
1 Comment »

What’s on your holiday book wishlist? To get you started, here are five notable design books that were published in 2013; I realized after selecting a few that with this list, I was going for the beautiful. I’ll be back with five more favorites next  week, perhaps the bold, or the gritty.

In the meantime, if you scooped up a favorite title this year, one that now has a permanent spot on your coffee table or nightstand or in your workspace for inspiration, please drop us a comment and let us know.

In With the Old by Jennifer Boles. I’ve enjoyed Jennifer’s blog, The Peak of Chic, for years, and this glossary of the elements of timeless design is a great and entertaining reference that should grace any design lover’s shelf.

Timeless Style by Suzanne Kasler. I love the way Kasler can use antiques and luxe fabrics, yet her clients are so airy and fresh. The latest volume does not disappoing (her Inspired Interiors is another one of my favorites).

Beauty at Home by Aerin Lauder. Yes, you kind of want to hate her because she’s beautiful, but this book is just so full of pretty rooms and vignettes that you can help but love it.

American Beauty by Thom Filicia. This book chronicles the former Queer Eye for the Straight Guy’s adventures in renovating his lake house. It even has an intro by Tina Fey.

Stephen Sills: Decoration by Stephen Sills. This man’s designs are so good, Karl Lagerfeld himself claims if he ever had a house in America, he’d hire Sills to decorate it for him.

So those are just a few of the wonderful books full of elegant style. Stay tuned for modern inspiration in a few days.

Share

Thursday, August 22nd, 2013

Bathrooms With Big Personality

Becky

Posted by Becky | View all posts by Becky
Leave a comment!

When it comes to remodeling a bathroom, a lot of people get caught up in worries about resale value issues and thus wind up with something quite blah. The truth is that a lot of trends come and go, and a perfectly plain and popular standard overmount sink that’s the only option available one year can be passé just a few years later when undermount sinks are all the rage; that polished nickel you loved so much and seemed like a no-brainer may fall out of fashion like brass did after the 1980s (brass is back, by the way). No matter how exquisite you found your ever-popular granite pick, the next year marble and Caesarstone could come in and kick it right out of Elle Decor forever.

Depressing, right? Nah. When it comes to remodeling a bathroom, if you’re not planning on moving within five years, go ahead and do what you love.

Go mad with marble:

photo by Roger Davies for Architectural Digest

Avant-garde design goddess Kelly Wearstler designed this gorgeous bathroom for her daughter. The walls and floor are covered in an eye-popping inlaid marble pattern.

photo by Eric Piasecki for Architectural Digest

In interior designer David Kleinberg’s own apartment he went for striped marble, down the floor, and up the vanity, backsplash, shower stall and wall.

My calculator exploded when I tried to add up how much the marble in those two bathrooms cost, but they are beautiful inspiration.

Add unique lighting:

Photos by Sean Fennessy, production–Lucy Feagins / The Design Files

In a playful nod to Magritte, these bowler hats dangle over a freestanding bathtub with modern lines.

Warm up neutrals with lots of texture:

photo by Noah Webb

Coastal Modern master Tim Clarke warmed up a neutral-colored bathroom with pebbled shower walls. They lend an outdoor shower feel to this spacious shower stall.

Add unique artwork and accent pieces:

In addition to the brightly colored patterned tile, the homeowner’s patina style dressing table, lady in bright yellow portrait and lucite stool add loads of personality to this delightful bathroom. I would never want to leave it!

Paint a vintage clawfoot tub an unexpected color:

photo by James Merrell for Living Etc.

I also love the way they’ve added this unique schoolhouse map as art. It’s something that is easy to switch out if you’re tired of the bathroom.

What would you do if money/resale/reality in general were no object in your bathroom?

CREDITS:

Share

Tuesday, June 18th, 2013

A Little Moroccan Inspiration

Becky

Posted by Becky | View all posts by Becky
2 Comments »

As I perused a Moroccan style house last night, it got me thinking about what a wealth of inspiration this far-off land has to offer. I thought I’d share a few ways Morocco’s style can inspire you at home.

One of the very first design blogs I ever started following was My Marrakesh, and it’s been such a joy to watch its creator, Maryam Montague, touted by major trendsetters and media outlets. While Moroccan inspiration has been a style influence around the world for a long time, I believe she was a major factor in making it so popular for the past few years.It’s also been exciting to see Maryam land her book deal. If you want a tome of Moroccan inspiration, pick up Marrakesh By Design stat!

It’s also been fun to follow her and her architect husband build their boutique hotel, Peacock Pavilions:

Peacock Pavilions, Morocco

Use bold colors and layers of textiles. Moroccan details you may pick up for your own home are the rich textures of kilim textiles and Beni Ouarain and groups of perforated hammered metal lanterns. Exuberant colors stand out against white walls, and one can never have too many layers of rugs, pillows and other textiles.

Borrow Morocco’s deep and electric blue. When I think of Morocco, it’s all about Yves for me. Yves Saint Laurent and his partner Pierre Berge bought his Moorish villa from French painter Jacques Majorelle. To learn more about the joint, Jardin Majorelle, I recommend this excellent post, Chic in Morocco, over at Habitually Chic. This electric shade of blue is seen in many images of Morocco.

3. Make your courtyard a peaceful retreat. While gardens as lush as those at Jardin Majorelle are rare, Morocco is full of gorgeous outdoor spaces. Many houses are riads, which have interior courtyards. While some are full of intricate tile and fountains, others, like Riad Tarabel (another private guest house where you can stay), are more subdued.

Another iconic Moroccan image is of original sixties boho queen Talitha Getty (taken by Patrick Lichfield). Minarets are a common sight from Morocco’s rooftops.

4. Stop with all that boring white and tan tile and go bold. Life is shore. Handcrafted tiles in bold color combinations and intricate patterns are the way to go sometimes.

5. You can never have too many layers of textiles, or throw and floor pillows. Just ask Yves.

Share

Wednesday, April 17th, 2013

Design Books On Our Wishlists

Becky

Posted by Becky | View all posts by Becky
1 Comment »

I’ll let you in on a secret. I have a serious online book binge spending problem. My throw pillow and shoe impulse buys don’t hold a candle to a gorgeous hardcover book about architecture, landscape architecture or interiors. To try and find some balance, I hoard my spare change and then take it to one of those Coinstar machines so that I can get Amazon gift certificates. Here’s what me and my coffee table are currently literally saving our pennies for.

Designers at Home: Personal Reflections on Stylish Living by Ronda Rice Carman. We love designers. We love peeking into their homes. And most of all, we love the author Ronda and her blog, All the Best.

Kengo Kuma: Complete Works by Kenneth Frampton. This monograph is full of breathtaking ethereal designs by the Japanese architect, and organized by materials – water and glass, wood, grass and bamboo and stone, earth and ceramics. If you have a loved one graduating from architecture school this spring, this is a perfect gift, trust me!

Conde Nast Traveler Photographs: 25th Anniversary Collection. This beautiful compilation of photos from the pages of Conde Nast Traveler will have you thinking “I want to go to there!” every time you turn the page. Plus, on a shallower note, the taxicab yellow cover with its and graphic punch of type makes it a great design accessory that will draw the eye no matter where you stash it.

Speaking shallowly of eye-catching covers, this one caught my eye. Living Modern: California Design 1930-1965, edited by Wendy Kaplan, celebrates the unique way California architects interpreted mid-century modern style during the height of the movement. The book accompanied last year’s exhibition at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA).

The 50 Best Plants on the Planet: The Most Nutritient-Dense Fruits and Vegetables, in 150 Delicious Recipes by Cathy Thomas. OK, so not technically a design book, this book can help you plan out your spring garden for some yard-to-table treats, and is perfect for foodies, budding chefs and green thumbs alike.

Which design books do you have your eye on this spring? Let us know in the Comments section!

Share