June 24, 2010

What's New: The next generation has arrived

For all you iPhone fanatics out there (count me among you), the day we have waited for is finally here. Apple's latest smartphone went on sale today and I would love to upgrade mine when my contract is up on my soon to be "vintage" 3GS!

Did you have a chance to preview Apple's commercial, announcing this generation of iPhones?  It got me thinking of the next generation of materials.  Especially because as you can see on the photo above I noticed the sculpted headboard.  I am proud to share that my parents were the first to introduce sculptured panels in North America over 10 years ago after we visited the Batimat tradeshow in Paris. (Do you believe how lucky I was to go along?)  And now, just like the iPhones, technology has created a new generation: sculpted panels wrapped in a variety of natural and synthetic finishes including wood veneers and stone simulations and metallics.

In fact, just last night I went to the Retail Design Institute event at Maison France, which was sponsored by the French Trade Commission to showcase the latest in French design.  This is where custom luxury met savoir-faire.  My favorite was a hand crafted sculpted panel with wood floating in resin.  Just like the iPhone, the applications are endless!

June 23, 2010

What's Now: Life in the Limelight

Have you heard about the new Limelight Marketplace in New York City? Family friend James Mansour designed the space in the former church, then nightclub, and created an indoor market inspired by outdoor European bazaars. I’ve been there dozens of times since it’s opened, and my favorite stop is the candy store, IT'SUGAR. The shimmery pink materials framing the doorway and encircling the center display get my mouth watering for sour watermelons – my weak sweet spot! With the Havaianas booth right in front, I was inspired to pick up a new pink pair to add to my flipflop collection – a must for my 15 block daily commute.

It’s amazing how some white paint and the clean lines of the black and white stone flooring transformed this dark and dreary (and almost creepy!) place into a fun escape for gift buying and summer treats. It’s a refreshing addition to Sixth Ave, with a little delicious taste of glamour thrown in.

June 21, 2010

WHAT'S NEXT: At the beach on summer solstice

The first day of summer! It’s a beautiful start to the season here in New York and it has me looking forward to long days on the beach. I love the timelessness of sand-swept landscapes, and I think it's cool when retailers simulate that sun-blanched look and feel in their stores. It might not be the real thing plucked from a house in the Hamptons, but the available engineered hardwoods certainly capture the antiquity of driftwood without the creaking! Now, if they could only bottle the smell of the salt air…