Paola Navone Designs for Crate and Barrel: A Hit!!!

Crate and Barrel describes Paola Navone perfectly in the following bio:

She is a world-renowned architect, designer, art director, interior decorator, industrial planner, creator of events and, in her words, “a little bit of an anthropologist.”

Photo courtesy Crate and Barrel

She is a dreamer, she is curious, she appreciates the eclectic. She is Italian by birth but calls the world home. She is a natural entertainer who finds joy in impromptu gatherings around the table to celebrate a beautifully simple menu.

Therefore it only seemed appropriate that Crate and Barrel would invite her to design a dining collection, composed of furniture, linens, tableware and lighting.

I had to stop in my tracks the other day at Crate and Barrel when I saw the beautiful arrangements at the Burlington, MA store. Whimsical and peppy, inviting and elegant are words that come to mind. I am not necessarily sold on all the colors, but they certainly deliver a big bang for lovers of red, white and blue. The greys and whites were my favorites.

Paola Navone- Photo Credit: Barbara Elza HirschPaola Navone designs for Crate and Barrel | Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch

Como Round Marble Top Dining Table by Paola Navone, a truly stunning combination | Photo courtesy Crate and Barrel

Riviera Tall Windsor Chair by Paola Navone offers fantastic scale | Photo courtesy Crate and Barrel

RivieraPendantGreySmPNF13

Riviera Small Grey Pendant by Paola Navone for Crate and Barrel | Photo courtesy Crate and Barrel

Paola Navone designs for Crate and Barrel | Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch

The Como Bench by Paola Navone for Crate and Barrel | Photo courtesy Crate and Barrel

Como Loopy Candleholders by Paola Navone for Crate and Barrel | Photo courtesy Crate and Barrel

Paola Navone designs for Crate and Barrel | Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch

ComoWovenChairWhtLLPNF13

Como White Woven Chair by Paola Navone for Crate and Barrel, a beauty | Photo courtesy Crate and Barrel

What do you think, friends? Curious to hear! Happy Weekend!

 

 

2-New Orleans: Sustainable Gas Lanterns and Bevolo

The Gas Lantern is one of the signatures of the French Quarter in New Orleans. Our BlogtourNOLA group was invited for breakfast and a factory tour at Bevolo, a family owned business that revolutionized the production of gas lamps by developing a unique technique. In 1945, the French Quarter opened its doors to an Italian-American family owned business: Bevolo Gas and Electric Lights. Andrew Bevolo, Sr., who had worked in manufacturing  for companies such as Ford,  realized that by utilizing a hand riveting technique rather than making brittle soldered joints, he could create sustainable gas lights. He started working with architect A. Hays Town to develop a beautiful design. Thus was born the French Quarter Gas Lamp, inspired by the London street lights of the 19th century.

Bevolo Lighting in NOLA French Quarter.  Photo by Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez ElzaPhoto Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez Elza

Bevolo offers 500 types of lights, and we saw a good 40 styles displayed at the factory. These are offered in multiple finishes, but copper is the best seller, sought after for its beauty and durability. I learned that gas lights utilize very little energy and the cost to keep one lit is 7 to 10 dollars per lamp per month. They are “basically a pilot light with a fancy cover” to quote the third generation owner, Drew Bevolo. Due to their high efficiency, the gas lamps stay on day and night. They can be used indoors as well. Kitchens are seeing a big trend in large lantern pendants. Lights used indoors are equipped with a safety valve. All these lanterns can be made electric as well. Bevolo offers a lifetime warranty on broken glass: if it breaks, the glass will be replaced for free!

As I observed the soft glimmer of the gas flames, I was transported through time and charmed by the quiet and non glaring properties of this type of lighting.

Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez ElzaSecond from right is the original 35 x 18 London inspired Street Gas Light. Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez Elza

Detail of 1/4 inch tubing used  for the gas line. Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez Elza.Detail of 1/4 inch tubing used for the gas line. Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez Elza.

Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez Elza.Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez Elza.

Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez Elza.One of my absolute favorite lamp designs at Bevolo’s. Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez Elza.

Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez Elza.Entrance to the factory. Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez Elza.

Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez Elza.A coppersmith at work at Bevolo’s. Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez Elza.

 

Bevolo lamp -electrical version. Photo Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez ElzaAn electric lamp version. Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez Elza

Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez Elza.Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez Elza

Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez ElzaHere I am standing in the courtyard beween the factory and the museum part of Bevolo. Note the Bevolo lantern on the wall behind me. Photo Credit: Linda Merrill,  a fellow designer, holding the camera for Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez Elza

I will end this second chapter by sharing a few images of the streets where the store and factory is located.

Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez ElzaFrench Quarter- Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez Elza

Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez ElzaFrench Quarter. Literally felt I was in Europe standing here. Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez Elza

Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez ElzaFrom the first floor of Bevolo’s, looking out. Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez Elza

Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez ElzaFrench Quarter- Photo Credit: Barbara Elza Hirsch | Chez Elza

I want to thank the Bevolo team for a fabulous tour and visit. I learned so much and as always, relish a factory tour!

Next on the list, I will share what I learned about the New Orleans community’s efforts to rebuild its homes. A la prochaine!

Crazy, Vibrant New York : ICFF Finds (Merci, BlogFest 2012)

I dragged my luggage through long corridors, up into the subway, down escalators and carried bulging bags filled with awesome magazines, incredible gifts from BlogFest2012, battled rain and ended walking barefoot in Brooklyn on a particularly pouring evening; I met design celebrity after design celebrity, spoke with amazing people, stuffed my pockets with business cards and toasted many champagne glasses; I met an amazing family owned business (the one and only Kravet), snapped picture after picture, took notes and went to bed at ridiculously late hours, learning about design day in and day out. I came home exhausted but over the moon.

Where in the world did I go????

Two words: Blogfest 2012.

The Kravet Group launched the Blogfest 2012 concept in 2011. It has since become an amazingly popular destination for interior designers and bloggers who blog about design. This year, registration for the event sold out in 4 hours!  Blofest 2012 defines itself in these words : Blogfest is a three day tour designed exclusively for interior design bloggers featuring the industry’s top shelter magazines, A-list design celebrities and breathtaking venues. 

Follow me as I take you along and share highlights of my trip.

When: Monday  May 21st, 2012

First Stop: ICFF -International Contemporary Furniture Fair

Before meeting our Blogfest hosts and friends, we were offered an optional ticket to the ICFF.  I took advantage of this time to take a few photos of interesting items.

Stone Source- screen printed Porcelain tiles in incredible colors and patterns.
Stone Source tiles.

More tiles by the same vendor:

I finally saw the famous Family Chairs by Design House Stockholm  :

Family Chairs

I loved these sculpted bowls from the same vendor:

Ceramic bowls by Design House Stockholm

I really had to stop and admire the lines by Manulation, a Serbian Designer, making  traditional wood carved furniture since 1927, and now also offering a modern line:

Wood furniture by Manulation.

I stopped dead in my tracks when I saw the following work by Asher Israelow:

Spalted Beech Wood Chair by Asher Israelow. Incredibly comfortable and beautiful design. Desk in background is by same designer.
This chair also by Israelow was very comfortable as well and the leather offered a soft contrast next to the wood grain.

And this piece by Wewood, a Portuguese Joinery, made of French oak was superb:

Wewood French oak piece with beautifully crafted drawers would make a nice statement in a room or in an entry foyer. You could put all your keys, mail and small items in it!

Next I gravitated towards wall coverings and fabrics:

Textile Print Designer Julie Kouamo is based in London where she creates wall coverings and fabrics. She likes to create textural patterns mixing old and new dyeing and printing techniques.

 

Another creation by Julie Kouamo, in which she draws inspiration from printing techniques used in her native Cameroon and mixes them in with photographic elements drawn from nature.
Juju Papers Handmade wallpapers from Portland, Oregon were whimsical and could look fabulous inside a child’s bedroom for example.
Another design by Avery Thatcher of Juju Papers.
Double R Studio eco-friendly wallpapers. Artist Rosa Ruey is inspired by organic shapes and Chinese landscaping painting.

A few close-ups:

Shalimar Pattern.
Viceroy Palace Pattern.

In a very different style, these hand-painted wall coverings by Vahallan Papers were wonderfully textured and imitated metals to a T:

Destiny by Vanhallan Papers.
Urbana by Vanhallan Papers.

This sublime chandelier by Tracy Glover captivated my attention:

Handblown glass Silver lining Chandelier by Tracy Glover.

I am seeing more and more incredible outdoor furniture and fabrics. The following surprised me by their design, which I felt were very accomplished:

Barcelona foozball indoor and outdoor tables. Now, how cool was that?
Close-up view.
Massant outdoor chair.
Another lovely Massant outdoor chair.

Finally, back in the indoor furniture section, I was drawn to these unusual chairs by designer Cecilie Manz for Fritz Hansen:

Soft, curvy, sturdy and comfortable chairs by Cecilie Manz for Fritz Hansen. I love that they are so carefully crafted with soft felt like fabrics, available in dark or light grey for the exterior and warm to cool colors for the inner. A thin band of leather piping follows the edges.

What a way to start my Blogfest adventure! Thank you, Kravet and Blogfest, for this opportunity to visit the ICFF before the Blogfest kick-off!

Until next post…part 2 of Blogfest 2012 with fabulous more designs!