This month, the New-York Historical Society opened the doors to a new exhibit to honor the 150th anniversary of the Civil War. The traveling exhibition - Homefront & Battlefield: Quilts & Context in the Civil War - uses quilts, textiles, clothing, and other artifacts as a means to connect visitors to personal stories about the war, its causes and its aftermath.
The exhibition was organized the American Textile History Museum and shares the link these textiles made between soldiers and civilians and the way the quilts worked to share the stories of the soldiers' experiences. The enlightening collection builds on recent scholarship and aims to acknowledge the human experiences behind the war.
Homefront & Battlefield: Quilts & Context in the Civil War
New-York Historical Society
Through August 24, 2014
Watercolor motifs have been in the spotlight on recent runways with designers including Michael Kors, Naeem Khan and Vera Wang among those who incorporated such light, airy, colorful motifs into their clothing designs. As ever, home trends quickly follow on the heels of fashion and Loom Decor's spin is this week's pick for Fab Furn.
Loom Decor allows you to bring brushstrokes reminiscent of the masters into the home without having to hang them on the walls or break the bank. The company has parlayed the theme into a variety of takes - from muted, soft textiles and pillows to more cheerful and bright Ikat treatments that make for perfect poufs and very stylish extra seating. And you're not restricted to the ways in which I've seen and enjoyed these patterns. The company's varied watercolor fabrics can be applied to any of its silhouettes.
For more from the company, visit the Loom Decor website.
This year's Los Angeles Modernism Show & Sale is just a couple weeks away and the always-anticipated event has a lot in store. LA Modernism brings together a curated collection of decorative and fine arts from all design movements of the 20th Century.
This time around, the Show & Sale moves to 3LABS Studio, in the Hayden Tract Arts District of Culver City, and kicks off with an opening night party on Friday, April 25. The event will benefit P.S. ARTS, a non-profit organization created to improve children's lives through arts education.
More than 40 national and international exhibitors with specialties in furniture, lighting, sculpture, paintings, jewelry, silver, glass, ceramics, photography, textiles and more will be represented at the Show & Sale. Exhibitors include Santa Fe-based galleries Steven Maras and Modern 2.0, San Francisco's Gallery 925, Alexandre Huygelvede of Paris, and Southern California's own LA MOD, Atomic Bazaar, Christopher Anthony Ltd., and Off the Wall.
The show's agenda also includes a panel discussion on Saturday, April 26, with Bravo's Million Dollar Decorator Jeffrey Alan Marks and Lisa Bowles of ROARK modern, along with moderator Mayer Rus, West Coast Editor for Architectural Digest. The conversation will examine "What's Modern Now? Moving beyond stale clichés to redefine modernism for today."
Los Angeles Modernism Show & Sale
Culver City, Calif.
April 26 - 27
Opening night party: April 25
Robert Allen has added a new crop of textiles for spring to its Contract Color Library. Textures add depth to the fabrics while saturated hues like the bold green Malachite, rich Royal Purple and sophisticated Slate decorate them. The colors come from natural minerals and from the runway and are meant to infuse a space with glamour without being haughty.
The overall Contract Color Library collection encompasses a variety of constructions including flatwovens, cut velvets, high-performance Sunbrella Contract textiles and a versatile polyurethane textured design. All the textiles pass ACT standards for heavy-duty upholstery and so can work well to provide high-traffic areas with a bit of sophistication.
Motifs range from playful patterns inspired by illustrations to classic checks. The line also adds touches not often available in contract fabrics, like metallic accents and wool felt looks.
I could not be more excited to be heading back outdoors and love the influx of products that have been coming my way to help me do so in style, comfort and luxury. Topping that list right now is an item that has me longing to pour a glass of wine and curl up beside it: the Wine Barrel Fire Pit Table from Vin de Flame. The beautiful, functional design is this week's pick for Fab Furn.
There are actually many styles from which to choose and a variety of ways to make a design your own. The fire pits are hand crafted using stainless steel for burners and parts ensuring nothing will rust; the barrels are preserved, sanded and weather sealed; a hinged side door is designed to hide the fire pit's 5-gallon propane tank (natural gas and corn fuel burners are available as well); lava rock and fire glass are included; and the entire piece is mounted on casters for convenience.
If you're working on your own outdoor space or designing one for a client, these fire pits will make a statement and make anyone feel at home. Luxury and comfort: quite a combination.
The National Building Museum dedicates its space to all things that go into the built world: the architects and designers, the building materials and the completed buildings themselves. The museum's latest exhibition - Cool & Collected: Recent Acquisitions - gives visitors a first-look at the latest pieces to find a home at the museum.
Covering all the building bases, the exhibition pieces range from a kaleidoscope dollhouse to pieces of decorative terra cotta from notable buildings in Chicago and New York, including the Audubon Ballroom where Malcom X was killed and the Helen Hayes, a Broadway theater that was demolished in 1982.
The exhibit also places focus on local sculptor Raymond Kaskey and features maquettes of some of his pieces that are featured around the country. Kaskey's portfolio of work includes the Portlandia statue in Oregon, a pediment for the Nashville Symphony Hall and his work at the Washington, D.C. World War II Memorial where he sculpted, among other pieces, 24 panels illustrating the history of the conflict on the home front and abroad.
Cool & Collected: Recent Acquisitions
The National Building Museum
Through May 25
The Textile Museum's regular series - Rug & Textile Appreciation Mornings - is about to host its final session at the museum's S Street location and the morning is set to honor all those sessions and the space that housed them.
Textile Museum Trustee Wendel Swan will host the final discussion - Remembering the Original Myers Room: A Potpourri - that will bring together past speakers who will share stories of the most interesting and informative Rug & Textile Mornings gone by. Members of the audience will be invited to share their own recollections of previous sessions and also are encouraged to bring up to three rugs and textiles of interest. The pieces can either be memorable items discussed at previous sessions, personal favorites or new collection pieces.
The morning is free and does not require reservations but seating is limited so get there early to be a part of it.
The Textile Museum is in the process of relocating to its new home on the campus of George Washington University. Rug & Textile Appreciation mornings for May and June are scheduled to take place at the George Washington Alumni House.
Rug & Textile Appreciation Mornings
Remembering the Original Myers Room: A Potpourri
The Textile Museum
Saturday, April 26
My favorite vintage happening of the year - the Manhattan Vintage Clothing Show - strikes again this weekend! If you haven't hit the show in the past, make an effort to head to New York's Metropolitan Pavilion this Friday and Saturday for the event that attracts some of the city's most fashionable shoppers.
While the show is known best for its massive array of clothing, there are historically dealers of vintage textiles as well, and other household items, including vintage fashion and design magazines and decorative accessories often make a showing. In fact, this particular edition promises a total of 80 dealers of vintage clothing and textiles.
The point I always stress when it comes to this show is that the items for sale here are indeed collectibles. Many will be found behind glass on the show floor and they may be best suited to remain as display pieces once brought home. The precious nature of the goods opens up a world of decorative opportunity as items hold the potential to function as very unique pieces of art - fashionable relics that tell a story of place, time and sentiment.
This edition of the show also marks a partnership between Manhattan Vintage Clothing Show and the New York-based charity Housing Works. Anyone who arrives at the show with an item of clothing to donate to Housing Works will receive half off the regular admission price. An opportunity to do good and look good; what could be better than that?
Manhattan Vintage Clothing Show
Friday, March 28, & Saturday, March 29
125 West 18th Street
Entry discount available online
I do indeed get drawn in to anything with a vintage inspiration and a new collection of sconces from Corbett Lighting has me fascinated. Inspired by vintage perfume bottles, the line of sconces is this week's pick for Fab Furn.
For this striking collection, crystal bases in elegant, beautiful forms are met with polished stainless accents, hand-crafted iron frames, modern silver leaf finishes and luxurious ivory shades. With names like First Date, Player and Queen Bee, the glamour is implied, but these designs live up to their monikers and act as sparkling pieces of jewelry that could complement a variety of settings. Historically speaking, the vessel in which a perfume is contained has always played an equally important role to the actual scent it holds. The bottles are designed to be displayed and gazed upon, coveted and enjoyed. This new line of sconces holds up to that history.
A bonus beyond the sophisticated styling: all four designs in the collection are ADA compliant, making them a great choice for hospitality and contract, as well as residential applications.
For more from the company, visit the Corbett Lighting website.>
Better Homes & Gardens has released its first ever Color Palette of the Year, a collection of seven colors that reflects trends in fashion and home and welcomes the spring season, a time for rebirth and redecorating, with the soft and bright hues of a garden in bloom. The selected hues are both fresh and lasting.
The magazine takes its list one step further, naming specific color examples from a variety of brands to represent each color in the palette.
BH&G Color Palette of the Year
BH&G says: It's the biggest news in fashion, wearable for anyone and any room.
Sample suggestion: Indigo Cloth 4009-7 from Valspar
BH&G says: Pulled from the sun, this energetic color brings a happy mood.
Sample suggestion: Sunday Afternoon T14-19 from Behr
BH&G says: Pale purple with gray undertones make an easy-to-live-with cool color combo.
Sample suggestion: Obi Lilac, SW6556, by Sherwin-Williams
BH&G says: This leaf-inspired hue is just like the greens in nature - a colorful neutral.
Sample suggestion: Elm Valley, B32-6, by Ace Hardware
BH&G says: This mid-range blue hue is timeless and looks great with anything.
Sample suggestion: Blue Jean, 2062-50, by Benjamin Moore
BH&G says: This pretty poppy explores the trend of adventurous brights.
Sample suggestion: Haiku, 4-7, by Pratt & Lambert
BH&G says: Aim for a naturally warm-toned beige, like pebbles in sand.
Sample suggestion: Navajo White, D12-1, by Olympic