We have all seen the lists;
‘the best new …’,
‘this years 10 must have …’,
’30 great pieces …’,
‘the top 100 …’
What about something including the quality;
When it comes to choice in decoration it can all seem a bit overwhelming. There are things that make a home or interior attractive and things that make life in a home interesting.
Consider the following ….
1. Ceramic Art
Georgina Lohan, Artist
“We have for some reason agreed that if it is painting or sculpture or a few other things, then it is serious high art but if it happens to be the wrong medium , then that’s just craft…” – Tom Rachman speaking about ceramic artists from his novel “Italian Teacher”.
To Georgina Lohan pottery is to her what a scale is to a musician, something that hones the skill required to realize her creative vision. She practices always. While her bowls and vases have unparalleled artistry in form her sculptural pieces are a tour de force. A collage of ideas, a happy dream fantasy, pulled together with style and life. Lohan is an example of a ceramic artist breaking down the wall between art and craft.
2. Oversized Abstract Original Art
Christin Fernandes, Co-Owner, Da Vinci’s Home, Vancouver
” Impactful, bold pieces of original abstract art add drama in any room setting. Abstracts explore the relationship between form and color rather than recognizable images. So, whether it is paired with an antique sideboard or hung in a contemporary setting, these pieces create a striking focal point and elevate any room to the next level. We are always sourcing new art in our travels – from lithographs to oil paintings – framed in-house, to our exact specifications, enabling us to offer our clients a collection of curated pieces for extraordinary interiors.
5. Custom Furniture
Sharone Einhorn Co-Owner of Ruby Beets, Sag Harbor NY
” We have been in business for more than 25 years combining contemporary art, antiques and vintage finds, and our own lines of furniture and upholstery. Now, more and more of our business involves the custom-izable pieces we make , from nightstands and cabinets to armchairs and rugs. Many of our pieces reflect our interest in classic, vintage design and draw from the past. We may find a great vintage chaise at an estate sale and use it for inspiration to create a contemporary chaise with a nod to the past. We are able to work closely with our clients, many from the design world, to create functional beautiful furniture. Our shop is our showroom with a constantly changing interior and a very personal point of view. “
6. Cashmere Pillows
Bea Gillum, 28 Centre Pointe, Nantucket Massachusetts
The pleasure of cashmere is well appreciated. These pillows tell a tale. The IATA airport code is a three letter set that identifies numerous airports world-wide. With 17,576 permutations 28 Centre Pointe in Nantucket Massachusetts airport is ‘ACK’. These cashmere pillows have local appeal but have also become a popular tack-away for visitors. Available in a collection of colours.
11. Cloud Busting
Nosca Northfield, Founder and Artist at 17 Patterns
The mood and energy created within the home are determined by the type of art exhibited. Art is an essential focal point within the living space that serves to stimulate, relax, and inspire the mind. By taking a patterns and then containing it within geometric shape, you can create a hypnotic pull; where the open space serves to draw the viewer to the chosen focal point. The stimulus created by a series of works tilted ‘Cloudbusting’ particularity resonates with me, as they create a captivating focal point.
The original painting was exposed to all of nature’s elements and weathered naturally in the English countryside to enhance movement and texture within the watercolours. The rain and wind were instrumental in the development of the works, blurring the lines between nature, digital design- and organic artist-produced compositions. It is a representation of how Nature and Human nature coexist, a collaboration of two forces, documenting a beautiful journal of transformation.
Collections have an intrinsic value – they are interesting. I was inspired to this possibility through a blog I read – Amber Interior Design. The problem with collections is that they can easily feel contrived if this is not a real interest. Picture walls are a frequent example of this. Coffee table books can be equally disingenuous – do you really love ManRay? Oddities have an inherent issue – ethical and sustainable sourcing. That said, both can be easily over come. Be genuine and know your dealer.
Tony Ladd, Artist
Bird eggs are illegal to own in many countries. As shown here fine replica eggs displays are an equally pleasing substitute. Tony Ladd takes on Faberge with these naturalistic treasures. Hand-painted to the highest detail.
Tony Ladd, United Kingdom Tel: 44 (0) 1243 267247
The Skull Store, Toronto
To quote SkullStore; “SkullStore is Canada’s top store for ethically and sustainably sourced natural history products, including – skulls, fossils, taxidermy, minerals and oddities! We are the official gift shop of the Prehistoria Natural History Centre in Toronto!.” No doubt to some the kind of objects one finds at SkullStore might seem ghoulish or morbid, and to some always unethical. To others they are fascinating historical or scientific artifacts. Undeniably interesting.
The Skull Store: 1193 Weston Rd Toronto, Ontario, Canada Tel: 416-709-6777
16. Resin Bowl
Marth Sturdy, Artist
Martha Sturdy is no newcomer to the product design world. Her translucent resin bowl here adds a relaxed dash of colour to the counter or table top. The colour range covers bold to earthy to neutral . Transluscent means the bowl holds the light. Few things are as interesting in design as those that play with light. These are materially and by design modern. Their naturalistic design creates a more ambiguous effect.
19. Decorative Convex Mirrors
Matthew Buck, Designer, Owner, Reflecting Design
“Mirrors are top of the interior design ‘accessories’ list. The choice is huge with many repetitive iterations on the market. Looking beyond the practicalities no mirror really captivates like a decorative convex mirror. Convex mirror reflections have a gentle presence. They create atmosphere. Panoramas are naturally interesting. This is why convex mirrors work so well indoors – they are easy to enjoy. The Lola Mirror here beautifully centers the room.”
Reflecting Design, 1420 Venables Street, Vancouver, British Columbia, V5L 2G5 Tel: 778 858 8248
20. Faux Flowers
Abigail Ahern, Atelier Abigail Ahern, London England
Cut flowers are an undeniably pleasant touch inside. A touch of colour, a smattering of organic life in an otherwise inorganic setting. But flowers die, fade and the pleasure ends. Something is lost. The alternative are artificial flowers and plants. Flowering branches; apple blossom, cherry blossom, Savannah Plum and more, all offer an ever-lasting presence. The quality of the reproduction nowadays is unbelievably convincing. These are not the plastic flowers of your childhood. They are something altogether more authentic. Abigail Ahern offers master-classes on flower arranging.
22. Functionality and Design
Kurt Zimmerer, Graye, Los Angeles
The benefit of a free hanging console table is not widely recognized. Free hanging suggests functionality over all. Established in 1948 by Luigi Allievi, the Italian company Porada excels in producing stylish wooden furniture and accessories. The Lineas 117 is an example for well designed and functionality as one.
GRAYE, 316 South Robertson Blvd., Los Angeles 90048 Tel: 310 385 7872
23. Wooden Puzzles
Chess, Puzzles and Mind Games
One task for any interior designer is to capture or represent their client’s interests. This needs to be authentic or unpretentious. Coffee table books lend themselves too often to the later – are you really interested in Manray or is this just a superificial decoration? We all like games or puzzles. Wooden pieces can be pleasing to the eye, a mind exercise and good for conversation.
25. Desert Plants
Mariscal Cactus & Succulents
A cactus is the living variant of a faux flower. Organic yet lifeless. Growth is imperceptible. Black-thumbs everywhere smile. They ask for little. The perfect plant companion. Prickly they want nothing, least of all to be touched.
Cacti are singularly cool. Like all natural objects they are inimitable – well, maybe not. Large or small a cactus is great design element. Make sure you plant them in an equally appealing pot. Plants are great but in design only when the entire package is assemble perfectly.
Mariscal Cactus & Succulents, 66085 Dillon Rd Desert Palm Springs, CA 92240 Tel: 760 518 1077
27. Atmospheric Lighting
It often feels to me that when it comes to competitors few accessories have as much product as mirrors. Even when the 10 biggest are all imitators of one another. But when I look at the world of lighting I know I am wrong. So much to choose from. Zenza ‘Atmospheric Lighting’ convey style with all the charm of hand crafted pieces.
Julian Riley, co-owner, Maria Tomás Indoor & Outdoor Living , Calgary
Solid Black American Walnut is one of those woods that is truly magical! The movement of the grain, the warmth from the mid tone brown without the “red” undertone, draws many to this species. It can be truly “modern” or otherwise pair well with many traditional pieces.
Maria Tomás, 6051 Centre Street SW, Calgary, Alberta T2H0C2, Tel: 403-454-6051
29. Illuminated Outlines
Mona Lee, Owner, Manor Interior Design, Toronto
Geometric, diffused borders create an architectural chandelier that is both contemporary and luxurious. This light easily transforms any space by adding layered elegance with definition. Both ethereal and cerebral, illuminated outlines are defining new boundaries in bold and sophisticated interior design.
31. Gallery Wall
Ty Larkins, Interior Designer, Owner, Ty Larkins Interiors
Creating a “Salon style” or “Gallery wall” of artwork comprised of a diverse grouping of unrelated pieces is a great way to really personalize a space that doesn’t appear as though it was purchased out of a retail catalog. The key is finding a common denominator represented in all of the artworks in order to form a visual relationship. Examples include frame style and color, background color of the matting, or image type (such as the original black & white photography collection shown below).
17 & 1/4 …. Books
It is just the opinion of the Editor now, but books are always interesting. They convey interests, and they look great. A mosaic of colours and ideas.
Let us know your thoughts about what in decoration makes an interior interesting. Comment below.
We know there are only 17 1/4 Things. 🙂