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Entries in UK (20)


John Reeves, Designing the Antique Furniture of Tomorrow

Irwin Weiner ASID - I found a video of a furniture maker with a philosophy that's in perfect synch with my decorating and interior design ethic. UK furniture designer John Reeves tries not to follow design trends. Instead, he insists on designing clean, contemporary furniture with nods and twists to past periods and styles, but all with an attempt to create "antiques of the future," decor elements that someone can live with for a lifetime.

I'm tired of disposable decorating and furnishings. They insult homeowners and my clients. Good quality pieces hold or gain value over the years and, when mixed with more moderate priced pieces, add impact and timelessness to a room unlike anything else.

Reeves isn't buying into the disposable culture where you purchase a mass-produced item that will last only a few years and must be disposed of. And if you're making furniture for the long haul, it better be sustainable, too. Reeves only uses sustainably sourced timbers and he also uses discarded materials in his work, like scrap marble.

In his Sketch collection, Reeves uses old aluminum engine blocks from Vietnam and melts them down into recycled furniture (beautiful sand cast pieces that have a finish not unlike rough, washed river stones). Click on each image for more product information, and visit the Reeves Design website.

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Is Your Home's Front Door Making a Good First Impression?

Irwin Weiner ASID - I don't think we notice our front doors very much while we're in the thick of designing and decorating the rest of our homes. But this is a certainty: Other people notice your front door, and it makes either a positive or a sour first impression.

A realtor just told me that the care and upkeep of each element of your home tells others whether or not you take good care of yourself, your belongings, and your home's general upkeep. A front door with peeling paint, a cracked window, faded varnish, or bad door hardware will give everyone the wrong signal when they visit you.

I picked some of my favorite contemporary front doors from an excellent UK supplier, Urban Front Ltd. Click on each image for more product information. Their doors are steel-reinforced hardwood, and you can also use this company for garage doors and interior doors. Some of the interior doors come with matching frames built with acoustic seals on all four sides and concealed or pivot hinges. A great resource to put into your Home Improvement file!

In today's featured video, we go behind the scenes at Urban Front and hear the designers talking about what goes into their products.



Design Video: Marc Newson's New Furniture Book

Irwin Weiner ASID - Iconic describes furniture designer Marc Newson and his amazing body of work. Taschen has just come out with a new book of his work - click here for more information on Marc Newson Works - and this video is the rare treat of seeing the UK designer actually thumb through the proofs with us and comment along the way. Pictured above is Newson's well-known Lockheed Lounge, one of the most expensive pieces of furniture ever sold at auction. (How's this for self-effacing? On his own website bio, Newson is described as "the most acclaimed and influential designer of his generation.")


3 Outdoor Accessories to Add to Your Summer Yard

Irwin Weiner ASID - Summer decorating outdoors usually means setting out the sets of porch, deck, patio, and pool furniture (lucky you, if you have all four!), but it should also mean accessorizing. Our philosophy on outdoor decorating is the same as indoors: be eclectic and mix up styles and looks and add objects of interest outdoors just as you would indoors. We like the look of "outdoor rooms," and just as we dislike matchy-matchy sets of furniture indoors, we think it's important to break up the monotony outdoors as well. Here are three outdoor accessories that will help personalize your outdoor spaces.
Kadai Fire Bowls (first photo) - We have four fire bowls outdoors, two small and two large, and for years we've been using them as planters. We now realize that they are truly Indian in origin and are used to prepare grilled food for family and guests at weddings and ceremonies. We know they work just fine for planters and water features, but add a tripod or base as shown in the photo, and you have an excellent handmade accessory to add warmth to your outdoor world.
Kensuke Coffee Table and T-seats from The Third Nature (second photo) - What a lovely set of contemporary concrete outdoor furniture! Durable, timeless in design, and intimate, you can add benches and tables in the same style to the individual T-seats and coffee table shown here.

Classico Pergola from Metal Design Furniture
(third photo) - A pergola or gazebo creates an instant focal point for a yard, and in the case of the configuration shown in the photo, it helps further define an outdoor room by giving it a suggestion of walls and a ceiling. In this case, one would trail vines up the iron posts and train them to form a green ceiling, perfect for summer dining, conversation, and entertaining. A pergola is the ideal accessory to finish off any space (the Classico and other Metal Design features are availabile in a wide range of colors and finishes).