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Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Chandeliers hit a Glass Ceiling


Visiting the modernist 97 Park Avenue this September, this fantastic aircraft [with working propellers] was suspended from the ceiling in the main stairwell. A brilliant use of space, which would probably find itself housing a chandelier or feature pendent if part of a designer's brief.

While there is many an artful chandelier on the market, the functional need for a sculptural fitting to hold candles bulbs is quite redundant these days; not least in Mancaves. Using ceiling space for more dynamic art or sculpture and lighting it appropriately represents a modern day solution to 'filling the void' that seems far more relevant.

Bus Blinds in the Bathroom


The vintage bus blind seems to be on trend at the moment. While the jury may still be out on it's appeal post the 'Keep Calm and Carry On' bubble [it will come], classic typography in moody hues is an easy win for masculine spaces. This vintage style pharmacy towel from H&M deliveres functionality and the same feel without sandwitching a fabric bus blind behind glass. Shown with steel vase from Sevens in Dusseldorf and silk branches from Habitat.

Praise for Meguro's Design Community


Design Trawling is often tricky in cities as vast as Tokyo. While similar types of stores will inevitably tend to co-locate, seeking out design gems can be hard work [not least because of the often independent nature of design and designers]. The Meguro Interior Shops Community, or MISC, is pulling together the 60 or so design retailers, workshops and galleries along the 5km throughfare with a comprehensive directory, website and maps.

There are plenty of stores serving up furniture and accessories in the masculine/utility style perfect for Mancaves. Best of the best are Lloyd's Antiques [pictured], ACME [who have two stores], Blackboard, and Geographica.

Catch me if you ADK Can


It's an inevitability that I've come to accept when visiting New York, Seoul or Tokyo - More often than not, I'll return with more luggage than I came with [owing largely to an over indulgence in design related acquisition]. My fifth trip to Japan introduced me to the excellent ACME Furniture company where I spotted this iconic valise.

Commissioned in 1938, the Zero Halliburton suitcase was originally made from aluminium aircraft engines. Alongside steamer trunks by Vuitton and Goyard, the Zero is the very definition of luggage. A trophy of the jet age traveller, this rare 'ADK' monogrammed case was the envy of every Tumi-wielding management consultant at Narita.

0 to Designer in 100 Articles

18 months ago I wrote an article about a chrome baloon dog, Jeff, that I picked up in Tokyo. It seems fitting then, that 100 articles later, I'm back in Japan. This time not as a casual shopper, but as an exhibited and soon to be published Designer.

It's been a great journey to the 100 article mark - BBC film crews, world famous penny floors and contact from Foster+Partners, LVMH and Hackett - not to mention 15,000 readers from dozens of countries.

There never was a 'grand plan' for DesignTrawler.com but I can't wait for the great designs, perspectives and opportunities to come in the next 100 articles.
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