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Monday, August 5th, 2013

Stunning Vertical Gardens

Becky

Posted by Becky | View all posts by Becky
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The vertical garden trend has gone from small painterly compositions on interior walls to giving modern skyscrapers a hanging gardens of Babylon look. We’ve been following it closely and pinning our favorites on our Vertical Gardens Board. Here are a few of the most stunning ones we’ve found, all using different ways to bring life up a wall.

Image via VertiGarden

This wall unit is by VertiGarden in the U.K. the composition of flowers and leaves in an array of purples and greens ties the exuberant arrangement together.

This otherwise blah concrete stairwell got a pop art-like treatment with colorful flowers in aluminum pots, arranged in a modern way (Even with image reverse searches, I haven’t been able to find credit for this photo beyond the Pinterest/Tumblr rabbit hole, please add the credit to the comments if you know where this is/who designed it/who took the picture!)

via rosenbaum.com

This ingenious system makes something useful out of otherwise discarded plastic bottles and turns them into something beautiful; a stunning installation that adds life to a stucco wall.

Hotel Ushüaia in Ibiza

This amazing wall of succulents in terracotta pots serves as a living wall and a sound barrier at a hotel in Ibiza. We especially like the way the curved wall works with the Vitra New Panton chairs, though those insects are a bit terrifying! Image via flores del sol

image via Urbanarbolismo.es

The Spaniards really have the whole vertical garden thing down. This one has the interesting look of typical horizontal garden plots. The grid makes it modern while the different textures and masses enlivens the wall.

Photo by Paúl Rivera

At the Tori Tori restaurant in Mexico City, diners sit at sunken tables in an abstracted urban jungle, beneath this massive and lush vertical garden.

by Fytogreen Australia

Finally, you can try this at home. Try a small framed out area using Wooly Pockets or hire a specialist for installation. If you are installing indoors, I recommend getting help from a pro so that you can figure out how to irrigate your living wall installation without damaging walls and floors.

Have you tried vertical gardening? If so, please let us know with a comment. We’d love to see a photo too!

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Friday, August 2nd, 2013

Guest Post: Designing a Succulent and Herb Garden on the Patio

Guest

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Elana Joelle Hendler of EJH Brand made it her summer goal to shape up her patio along her patio along the Venice, California canals just in time for summer. Here’s how it went down:

The goal: Decorate my beautiful flagstone patio with lively green colors, fresh herbs and fragrant aromas.
Theme: West Coast casual chic.
Additional goal: Appease my utter obsession with succulent decor by adding arrangements lining the house and in accent pots.

Succulents: When I moved to Venice, I was so inspired by the succulent decor you can find practically everywhere around here that I started incorporating it into the branded look for my business, including a live EJH succulent wall. I haven’t looked back since. They are an excellent patio choice because visually, they are fascinating, offering a variety of shapes, textures, colors, and sizes. They are also very low maintenance.

How I used them: First, I bought large pots in three different sizes to create a sense of high and low. This is a great way to break up the monotony of a space. I planted several different types of succulents with different shapes and colors to create elements of a dynamic dessert garden on my patio. Then, I used the same varieties and planted them on the border of the house and covered the dirt with red and white rocks to hide the dirt and add texture.

Herbs: By complete coincidence, I choose plants that are actually accounted for as essential oil candles in my EJH Signature Candle Collection. When shopping the nursery, I was immediately drawn to the Greek sage. From a distance, it looked like lavender but as I came closer I could see the beautiful soft and fuzzy texture of the leaves with pretty purple flowers.

Benefits of sage: Beautiful seasonal flowers, pretty leaves, medicinally used for centuries to cure so many ailments from skin to memory loss and is also great for culinary enthusiasts. Grab a few leaves and throw them into your fresh soups and meat dishes. If you’re not going to cook, you can always just enjoy how lovely they look on your patio on a warm summer day.

Next, I headed over the rosemary and lavender.  There is no better way to make your patio feel like a spa retreat like lavender. Not only does it add a chic rustic look, they smell wonderful and promote calm. Cut off a few sprigs and tie them together with a string and place them around the house next to the bathtub.

Table Top: Last, I planted some fresh oregano and chocolate mint leaves in shiny silver pots to decorate the patio table. I’m not one for overly ambitious patio table decor, so for me, the fresh herbs and a lavender candle to light on summer nights is all I need to enjoy the summer at home, in style, on my patio!

What’s on your patio this summer?

Shop all of Elana’s creations at EJH Brand

All photos by Elana Joelle Hendler

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Thursday, August 1st, 2013

Would You Stand Underneath a Chandelier Made of Scissors?

Becky

Posted by Becky | View all posts by Becky
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Our pals over at iittala sent over this video and it gave me a nice little eye candy work break today. It’s of a group of very creative people putting together an amazing pavilion at their parent company, Fiskars. I’m not sure how long it took, but the video gives you the satisfaction of seeing it all come together in a little over two minutes.

I love the chandelier made of Fiskars orange-handled scissors; it’s so clever and beautiful, but adds tension to the space. Which begs the question, how comfortable would you be standing underneath it? I think I would be a bit nervous, yet I would want to see the view from directly beneath it.

The pavilion opened in May of this year at Fiskars Group headquarters in Arabia, Helsinki. Pentagon Design created the installations  from various products from their brands, including Iittala, Fiskars, Gerber, Arabia and Hackman.

The installation includes Ateenan aamu (Morning in Athens) glass pendants and Kastehelmi votives designed by the likes of Kaj Franck and Oiva Toikka creating a pixilated art piece that lets the light through.

Toikka also designed the many beautiful iittala birds I’m constantly coveting. Right now my favorite is the Whooper Swan in Gray, but tomorrow it will probably be the owl or the magpie!

Have you ever seen a really cool installation made of something unexpected? One that sticks out in my mind was a lampshade made of aviator sunglasses at the International Contemporary Furniture Fair years back.

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Tuesday, July 30th, 2013

Getting the House Prepped for Back To School

Becky

Posted by Becky | View all posts by Becky
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Growing up in places where we trudged back to school after Labor Day, it always shocks me when the school bus hits my neighborhood around August 7. For some of you, back to school is fast approaching. As you clean up the swimming noodles and put away the summer luggage, it’s time to get the house spruced up for homework time. Here are a few ways to help your kids back in the homework groove.

No distractions: A well-organized desk. If there’s room in the house and the budget, giving a kid his or her own desk somewhere in the house that can be closed off and quiet is very important. While most prefer to have it in their own bedrooms, sometimes that can be a stressful hinderance to sleep. If this is the case, give your kid desk space in an adult office, basement, laundry room or playroom. Let them stock it with all the supplies they’ll need to get homework done – highlighters, pencils, sharpener, eraser, pens, power strips, chargers, notebooks, folders, et. al. Having an extra chair nearby can help when parental assistance is needed.

by interiors by nanette; photography by by Johanna Sophia Photography

A built-in workstation. Giving your kids their own grown-up workstations can help inspire them to get organized and get down to business. Use a wall in their own rooms, the playroom or even in your own office space. A room nowhere near where someone else is watching TV is best.

via The Style Files

More relaxed reading only: A reading nook. Reading homework can be done somewhere much more comfortable. Create an inviting spot where all that reading can be comprehended and perhaps even enjoyed.

Mash Studios Lax Edge Dining Table

Some collaboration from parents and a nosh: The kitchen table or island. Tempt kids to sit right down and knock out that homework with a clear kitchen table, snacks waiting and help at the ready (thought I don’t know about you, but fourth grade math is about as far as I can help).

By Shaunna West/Perfectly Imperfect Blog

Getting messy: The craft room. For those dioramas, posters, multi-media (and I don’t mean digital) and science fair projects, get the craft area set up. Mom, if this is your domain, you may have to give up your crafts for a week or so, hide everything you don’t want ruined and let your kids have at your craft area. If kids are still making those volcanos, make sure that project is relegated to the garage or backyard!

Parents, any other advice for homework spaces? Please share with us in the comments section?

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Monday, July 29th, 2013

ModKat Is On Sale

DesignPublic.com

Posted by DesignPublic.com | View all posts by DesignPublic.com
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Let’s face it, most litter boxes are not only disgusting, they are ugly. Not true with ModKat’s Litter Box. It hides the scat, comes with a cool scoop that hangs off the side,  is easy to clean, gives Fluffy a private commode and it even looks great next to an Eames rocker:

Here’s a video all about ModKat’s Litter Box:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oxRar3V2NSM&feature=player_embedded

While supplies last, we’re giving you, your puddy tat and your abode a break. Grab any ModKat box we have available for 20% off. This offer only lasts as long as our supply, so don’t pussyfoot around on this one.

Shop All ModKat

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