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m ode r n l u x u r y


design of the times!

drop-dead digs beyond-mod furniture chicago’s a-list starchitects

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cutting-edge crafts getting flor’d chi-town’s new cult of home cool!

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• • •

Home Fresh-cut Christmas trees m Holiday decorations & ornaments m Fresh trim, wreaths & garland m Unusual array of potted plants m Gifts & more!

Extended holiday hours through December.

Discover inspiration for your holiday decorations at City Escape Garden Center & Design Studio. Peruse our fourteen designer displays, each uniquely themed, showcasing our exceptional selection of holiday gifts and decorations for your home.

adorned. 3022 W. Lake Street, Chicago 773.638.2000

Publisher’s Note Fall 



these buildings plays a bigger role than ever in the overall picture. It adds another layer of inspiration. In this issue—the twoyear anniversary of CS Interiors—we take a look at the people, places and materials constantly pushing the interiors market to greater heights. From a totally modern construction company that focuses on nightclubs to a new, gorgeous line of furniture by a Holly Hunt alum to a brandnew tile and flooring showroom in the Mart, CS Interiors covers every square inch of it. Here’s looking to 2010 with hopes that it will be a rebound year for any of our beloved retailers that took a beating in this past not-so-soaring year. If the pages of this issue are any indication of what’s to come, I think we can make that a reality. Get out there and support your local businesses! lgibson@


I was thrilled when we decided to dedicate this issue’s Hot List to architecture—all the latest and greatest in an industry that is supposed to be on the lag, but clearly isn’t suffering creatively. My brother, who lives in Wisconsin, designs luxury homes for a living, and his passion for structural design has undoubtedly rubbed off on me. Anytime I see a new building go up—whether it’s a modern boathouse or a towering skyscraper—I can’t help but think about the architects who designed it and their passion for shape and innovation. Living here in Chicago, once home to greats like Mies van der Rohe and Frank Lloyd Wright as well as the new guard of today (Jeanne Gang, thank you for the Aqua Tower!), there’s never a shortage of inspiration across the skyline. Like any space, what you put inside

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Fall 2009

I n s pI r at I o n s ta r t s H e r e .

CHICago MerCHanDIse Mart glenvIew & Burr rIDge

Bath & Kitchen Products. Tile & Stone. Design Consultation.

Editor’s Note Fall 



my living room landscape, she has an art love story of her own: the two yellow William O’Brien pieces leaning above the mantel were the fi rst serious art she and her husband bought as a married couple, and as O’Brien has gone from art student to art star, she calls them “symbols of our promise.” Looking for some up-and-coming promise to call your own? Consider this issue a testament to all of Chicago’s hidden—and not so hidden—potential. There’s our feature story on all that is exciting in the city’s architecture scene, once again capturing global attention, as well as smaller-scale stories that are no less riveting. From furniture designers, decorators and even set designers, we’ve worked to capture the city’s right-now zeitgeist. The good news: Creativity is flourishing in all arenas. Contributing writer Jessica Cochran provides a go-to clutch of the most promising emerging artists on page 58. And gallery owner Monique Meloche’s beach house, featured on page 78, proves she really walks the walk, fi lling her gorgeous midcentury getaway on the lake with art, karaoke and plenty of memories. Which brings me back around to my own memory-making piece of art. Not only does its daily presence serve as a memory of my wedding day, it also reminds me that, without stories, our homes are nothing more than wood and furniture, fabric and paint. To bring it all into high relief, we’ve got to use our kitchens, dining tables, living rooms and even our gardens to celebrate the little days, as well as the big ones. Home is where the heart is? Call it a cliché to live by.


In the deep middle of production for this issue—CS Interiors’ second anniversary— came two other causes for celebration: 15 years of Modern Luxury and my own sixth wedding anniversary. In case you missed the amazing storefront windows at Barneys commemorating the occasion, the former caused quite a stir in the city. The latter, however, came and went with far less fanfare: a quiet, romantic dinner at one of our favorite restaurants down the street, and a card that made me cry at the table. I was reminded of our wedding day, when my then-fiancé sent a note to the bridal suite with a picture of a surprise wedding gift: a gorgeous landscape painting by New York City artist Tom Costa when he was just a fledgling student at Cranbrook Academy. The oversized landscape contrasts a warm, abstract foreground against a crisper background of vivid greens and a gray sky. Every so often, rushing around my house with a basket of laundry, a pile of work or a baby, I’ll catch a glimpse of the painting hanging in the living room, and I remember that moment. Fashion maven and mother of one (her second is on the way), Heiji Choy Black is the ultimate life curator, which makes her home as thoughtful and engaging as it is stylish. In almost every piece of furniture and art, there’s a personal story attached: a signed piece of art by Tony Fitzpatrick, whom she met while working together on a Chicagofocused museum project that never materialized; an edgy screenprint she picked up at a hole-in-the-wall shop in Brick Lane during her fi rst trip to London for Fashion Week; and the perfect whiteon-white embroidered pillows bought during a family trip to Korea. And like

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Fall 2009






PUBLISHER’S NOTE. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 EDITOR’S NOTE. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .12 CONTRIBUTORS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22 CALENDAR . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24

Chip DeGrace turns the humble Flor carpet tile into designers’ ultimate make-astatement material . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 70


Button-down trad and play-it-safe checks? Forget about it. D.C. is re-writing the constitution on totally cool décor . . . . 72


The city’s top design scene comes out to party at Orange Skin; and a local collective throws a design show opening during NeoCon . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 114


The people, places and things you’ve got to know!. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30


The stitch is back! Needlepoint makes a modern comeback . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38


A local blogger and online tastemaker dishes up her design faves . . . . . . . . . 40 Chicago’s fashion forerunners take their style to the homefront . . . . . . . . . . . . 42


The luxe life lives on in fall’s best batch of design books . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46


Taste test: A Chicago sommelier rates the latest high-design decanters . . . . . . . . 48


MARKETPLACE Where to get sofas, lighting and glass tile? The only listings that truly matter . . . 124 INTERIOR MONOLOGUE

Meet the under-the-radar designer of some of the most over-the-top surfaces in the biz . . . . . . 136

86 8 68

Cutting-edge furniture designers prove the Midwest is anything but middle of the road . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50 The interior of Binth’s studio is as beyond-the-box-cool as their cult-fave print work . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54


Get book-smart-chic with the latest trend in wallpaper: shelves that show off serious spine . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56


The latest and greatest emerging artists you need to know about right now. Period. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 58



Black and white graphics pack a highcontrast punch on accessories . . . . . . 62 Tricks of the stage inspire Chicago’s hottest set designers to turn up the creativity at home. Get a front-row seat! . . . . . . . . . 64 Debra Weninger moves to the top of the design chain with a just-launched collection that’s generating big-time buzz . . . . . . . 68

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Fall 2009


Photography: Tony Soluri Stylist: D. Graham Kostic Hair & Makeup: Christina Culinski using L’Oreal, Smashbox & M.A.C Cosmetics Model: Maddison Quinn at Ford Models Photographer’s Assistant: Al Froberg

Ivory chiffon evening gown, $6,700, at Bottega Veneta, 312.664.3220. Three-strand, double-wrap textured bracelet in sterling silver with leather strap, $4,195, at Robert Lee Morris Gallery, New York, 212.431.9405.


Feel good furniture Enduring dEsign, AmEricAn crAftsmAnship the finest, responsibly sourced materials meet the highest quality construction in a chair that will stand the test of time. Like 85% of our furniture, thatcher is made in the us — a versatile, shaker-inspired design handcrafted by Vermont artisans to serve you for decades.

thatcher chair, $299 portica table, $1479 as shown grove storage cabinet, $2699 Organza pendant, $199

we’re here to help 800.952.8455

Features Contents


Designer Jordana Joseph takes an airy lake house into the wow zone with A-list art, midcentury gems and plenty 78 of rule-breaking ’tude


A West Andersonville couple rehabs a former woodworker’s shop into a shrine 84 to out-of-the-box design


A storied Lincoln Park walk-up goes 21st-century-fabulous with help from 90 a Chicago fashion maven

NEw HEIgHTs Discover Chicago’s evolving skyline—and totally creative architecture scene—that everyone’s 96 talking about

DEsERT sTORM Super-cool design in an almost forgotten, artist-f locked hideaway 102 generates some serious heat


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Fall 2009


1901 N. Clybourn Ave., Suite 100 • Chicago, IL 60614 Tel 773.388.2900 • Fax 773.388.2916 •

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he had me at BONJOUR


B A K E R C H I C A G O 8 2 5 W. C H I C A G O AV E N U E BAKER DEERFIELD 775 N. WAUKEGAN ROAD AVA I L A B L E T O D E S I G N E R S AT A L L S T O R E S A N D B A K E R K N A P P & T U B B S w w w. b a k e r f u r n i t u r e . c o m 1

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312.274.2500 Contact: John Carroll DAllAs 2828 routh street, suite 350 Dallas, tx 75201 214.880.0003 Contact: Lindsay Jacaman hAwAii 2155 kalakaua avenue, suite 701 honolulu, hi 96815 808.924.6622 Contact: Alan Klein houston 2700 Post oak boulevard, suite 350 houston, tx 77056 713.622.1116 Contact: Louis F DeLone los Angeles 5455 wilshire boulevard, suite 1412 los angeles, ca 90036 323.930.9400 Contact: Alan Klein MiAMi 3930 n.e. 2nd avenue, suite 201 miami, Fl 33137 305.341.2799 Contact: Leslie Wolfson new York 7 w. 51st street, 8th Floor new york, ny 10019 212.582.4440 Contact: Stephen W Kong

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Contact: Dina Grant

stePhen w. kong Vice Chairman & Group Publisher

John carroll President, Eastern Division & Group Publisher

michael r. liPson Chief Operating Officer

ann y. song Vice President Creative & Fashion Director

alan klein President, Western Division & Group Publisher

sPencer beck Editorial Director

JeFFrey D. golDstein Chief Financial Officer & Chief Digital Officer

louis F. Delone Group Publisher, Southwest Division

michael b. kong Chief Executive Officer

sAn FrAnCisCo 243 vallejo street san Francisco, ca 94111 415.398.2800 Contact: Steven Dinkelspiel wAshington, DC 927 15th street, n.w. washington, Dc 20005 202.408.5665 Contact: Peter Abrahams

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Fall 2009


KITCHEN CLOSET WALL SYSTEM UPHOLSTERY ACCENT DINING ROOM OFFICE 3 0 0 We s t O n t a r i o Chicago IL 60610 T 312 640 0066 100 stores world wide


Contributors Fall  1






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Fall 2009

1) Amalie Drury had the urge to rent a Dumpster, pull it up outside her door and start throwing things away after writing her story about the homes of Chicago fashionistas. “They’re all so stylish and put together, both in the way they dress and the way they live,” she says. The anti-clutter M.O. of Gamma Player owners Jeff Mills and Yoko Uozumi was especially inspiring. “I loved their idea about too much stuff getting in the way of ideas,” says Drury. “It’s true!” Drury also contributes to CS, TimeOut and BizBash.

4) Inspired by the woodworking shopgone-loft stunner he covered for this issue, contributing writer Tate Gunnerson gained a new appreciation for goodhumored mix ‘n’ match décor. “I love kitsch, but my favorite element was the bold wallpaper pattern in the raised family room,” says Gunnerson, who also interviewed a group of talented Chicago set designers about their at-home style. Gunnerson also writes for Chicago Home + Garden, Make It Better and his local design blog, Strange Closets.

2) Interior design junkie and photographer Maia Harm thinks Chicago is underrated in the design department—especially for its “unbelievably beautiful design shops.” For this issue, she photographed Noël Ashby at her Bucktown studio and fellow photographer Michelle Litvin in one of those aforementioned beautiful shops. “I still don’t think I’ve thanked Brad over at Caste enough for buying me a latte and talking about wall decals,” says Harm. Her images have appeared in CS, The Men’s Book and TimeOut.

5) After interning for Modern Luxury for more than two years, Wendy Wong moved to New York to pursue her dream of writing from the Big Apple. Cue the economic downturn. But Wong isn’t letting the global economy hold her back. Working as a copywriter at fashion house Intermix, Wong continues to freelance for publications like WWD and Angeleno. For this issue, she covered two trend stories: the book craze that’s sweeping through the world of wallpaper and the hottest black and white home accessories.

3) Contributing writer Kate Ancell has covered fashion, beauty, design and travel for the past 10 years, and is happy to have landed in Chicago for good. “After a decade in London and then bouncing around the lower 48 like a demented ping-pong ball, I’ve finally found my own True North.” In this issue, she covers two other women who aren’t afraid to break new ground: author and taxidermy aficionado Audrey Niffenegger and furniture designer Deb Weninger. Kate’s work has been featured in British Vogue, Tatler and Food Illustrated.

6) Prior to his assignment for this issue’s travel feature ,“Desert Storm,” photographer Daniel Chavkin had never set foot in the high-desert areas of Pioneertown and Rimrock Ranch. That wouldn’t be so surprising if it weren’t for the fact that Chavkin is currently working on a book about architecture in nearby Palm Springs. But both desert towns resonated with the L.A.-based photographer, who counts himself a major midcentury junkie. Proof positive: He sports a tattoo of the Eames Office logo!

Calendar Fall 2009

Clockwise from left: Greenwich chair at Jayson home & Garden; one of last year’s diffA tables; manga ormolu, 2008 by Brendan tang featured at sofA chicago.

AlessAndrA BrAncA’s New ClassiC iNteriors

Art institute of chicAGo: konstAntin Grcic

Ready for some serious coffee-table bling? Chicago design diva Alessandra Branca’s latest book, New Classic Interiors ($60), comes out this month and showcases some of her best new work.

British-trained, Munich-based superstar designer Konstantin Grcic shows off distinctive design that reveals his interest in new technologies and materials, appearing in pieces he has designed for companies like Classicon, Krups, Moroso, Plank, Vitra, Luminaire and Magis. November 20-January 24. Art Institute of Chicago, 111 S. Michigan Ave.,

MAn shops GloBe Anthropologie addicts, it’s time to TiVo! In Man Shops Globe, Anthropologie buyer Keith Johnson scours the earth for antique and vintage inspiration to bring to the design-driven store. Debuts October 7, Te Sundance Channel.

JAyson hoMe & GArden WArehouse sAle Start your engines... this second annual warehouse sale was a feeding frenzy for design fiends last year. Discounts (up to 75 percent off) on furniture, textiles, accessories, holiday décor and garden containers won’t last long. November 6-8, 10am-5pm. Jayson Home & Garden Warehouse, 1740 W. Webster St.

diffA’s dininG By desiGn Ready to see some of Chicago’s top design talent take it to the table? DIFFA’s event of the year showcases the cream of the city’s designer crop with opulent tablescapes, silent auctions and blacktie cocktail events—all while raising millions for the nonprofit that distributes funds to Chicago area HIV/AIDS service agencies. November 5–7. Merchandise Mart, 222 Merchandise Mart Plaza,

sofA chicAGo the Comfortable home BooksiGninG Mitchell Gold and Bob Williams fans, join the queue: Tey will sign copies of their latest book, Te Comfortable Home: How to Invest in Your Nest and Live Well for Less at Jayson Home & Garden. December 2. 1885 N. Clybourn Ave. 24 |


Fall 2009

Tip-top international galleries and dealers show off what they’ve got alongside exhibits by museums, universities and arts organizations at one of the city’s premier annual art events. SOLO at SOFA debuts this year, highlighting cutting-edge installations by individual artists. November 6-8. Navy Pier’s Festival Hall,

Calendar Fall 2009

Clockwise from right: two works by francine turk; a dining room by leslie Jones at dreamhome.

WriGht Auction: tiMeless By constAntin And lAurene BoyM

the MerchAndise MArt desiGn center sAMple sAle

New York-based partners and renowned product designers Constantin and Laurene Boym, whose client roster includes Swatch, Alessi, Flos and Vitra, transform everyday objects into sculptural works of art for the must-see exhibit Timeless. November 4-14, 10am-5pm. Wright, 1440 W. Hubbard St.,

Tink the Merchandise Mart is strictly for the trade? Tink again. Te Mart’s Design Center opens its doors to the public for a sample sale with luxury home furnishings and accessories at up to 75 percent off. Register to receive a complimentary design consultation. November 14-15. $10. 222 Merchandise Mart Plaza,

luMinAire: 20th AnniversAry sAle

the MArt’s dreAMhoMe

A contemporary furniture lover’s dream sample sale: Stock up on sale-priced floor samples in celebration of 20 years of Luminaire. We hear the sale includes Boffi kitchen and bath, and furniture from B&B Italia, Cappellini, Zanotta and Flos, just for starters. October 17, 10am-6pm, October 18, 12pm-5pm, October 1924, 10am-6pm. 301 W. Superior St., 312.664.9582.

Now there’s no excuse for missing DreamHome! A rotating roster of the city’s top luxury interior designers (this year, names like Christopher Michiels and Mick De Giulio make the list) draw from the showroom resources of Te Mart’s Design Center to create a virtual portfolio of luxe inspiration. Celebrating its fifth anniversary, DreamHome will become a permanent fixture yearround and sports a fresh new layout. Closes December 18.

it’s CompliCated If you lusted after the perfect rooms in Te Holiday’s Cotswald bungalow or the Cape Cod spread in Something’s Gotta Give, then you know that Nancy Meyers’ movies are serious eye candy for designophiles. Te latest? It’s Complicated, with Alec Baldwin and Meryl Streep. Opening on Christmas night, the movie is chock-full of fab lighting, tons of sink-in seating and to-die-for art! 26 |


Fall 2009

frAncine turk At chicAGo Art source GAllery Most know her from career launchpad Te Break-Up, but ever since, artist Francine Turk’s work has catapulted into many of the finest homes in town. Inspired by a recent immersion into French culture, Turk’s latest solo show, Body Language, hits the sweet spot for designers and the style set. Closes October 30. Chicago Art Source Gallery, 1871 N. Clybourn Ave.

Lakeshore Drive penthouse.

Stunning views of Miele dishwasher. One dishwasher has the stature to raise property values. Its name forever synonymous with luxury, performance and innovation. A jewel nestled in the heart of the kitchen, whether hidden behind custom cabinetry or integrated in black or stainless steel. Miele dishwashers, a must-have appliance for every must-see listing.

Š2009 Miele, Inc.


Concept and Styling Collage Studio. Photo Fabrizio Bergamo.


Now! spotlight to-die for design hip deluxe Cool sleek modern white-hot ClassiC graNd home seXY retro biz luXurY estate inCrowd white-hot fashionable cool people sexy Culture leaders skin a-list sleek design diviNe jet set hot eXotiC architecture stark leather travel mystique excess the loop iNsider hip-hop Cool high-drama art arChiteCture obsessioN eXposed rides street plugged-iN stYle luxury sleek diviNe high-stYle in excess trends sleek glamour partY Cool the loop dowNtowN fasttraCk iNtersectioN front-row desigNer Catwalk spotlight to-die for divine hip deluXe Cool sleek ClassiC graNd modern home art sexy hot retro exotic sleek luXurY travel fashioNable in glamour vip estate Fall 2009

home front



HANG-UP Hugo Guinness lino-prints.

Multiplication Fable It was just a matter of time before multiples madness hit the design world. And now— after the aesthetic train wrecks known as Jon & Kate Plus Eight, Octomom and 18 Kids and Counting—Bob and Cortney Novogratz come as downright manna from decorating heaven. 9X Design focuses on the pair of compulsive property flippers who have worked their redo magic on a series of

über-cool New York properties. But extreme makeovers aren’t a picnic with seven kids in tow, including two sets of twins. The Bravo show, which airs in early 2010, takes you into their whacked-out world, where high art and highchairs, spit-up and teardowns—and lots of tantrums from both toddlers and parents alike—all come in one extremely wellpackaged bundle. –Alexandria Abramian-Mott

FAM-DOM From left : Bob and Cortney Novogratz with kids (in Brooklyn) and without.

High Art!

FLIGHT READING Pics rom Andrew Zuckerman’s Bird.

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Get ready to take flight with this season’s must-have coffeetable tome. Bird (Chronicle, $60) is photographer Andrew Zuckerman’s follow-up to his hit book and puzzle series Creature. And this is no in-the-wild look at cranes, condors and keas. Instead, by assembling on-site studios near aviaries in San Diego, Pittsburgh and Qatar, Zuckerman was able to capture the animals against his signature all-white backgrounds—the better to see these rare birds in all their unfettered glory. –AAM

Give one more plaudit to the style prognosticators at the late, lamented Domino magazine. Editors sensed printmaker Hugo Guinness and Chicago shopkeeper Larry Vodak would make a whirlwind team. When then-editrix Rita Konig visited Andersonville last year, she told Vodak his store Scout “perfectly represented the Domino philosophy” and she immediately rang up her friend and fellow Londoner, Hugo Guinness, to tell him about it. That’s how Scout became the only store in Chicago to carry Guinness’ strangely compelling linoprints (decoupage king John Derian’s unspeakably chic shop in New York’s East Village also carries them). “Modestly sophisticated,” is how Vodak describes the quirky black and white beauties depicting everyday objects like toasters, underwear, eyeglasses, tulips “and every breed of dog you can imagine.” Seems the buzz about the Brooklyn-based Guinness (who does New Yorker illustrations in his spare time) is beginning to crank here. “I put 20 up, and 15 sold the first week,” crows Vodak. Don’t worry, he’s restocked. Scout, 5221 N. Clark St., 773.275.5700. –Lisa Cregan


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KNIT WIT Michelle Litvin with one of her images at Caste.

Haute Craft


sculptures Litvin calls mindscrims (the first sold to one of Kara Mann’s clients within hours of arriving at the gallery); a stunning triptych of elegant steel cylinder lamps sheathed with delicate steel-and-silk threads; and an intricate photographic study of the work (100 unique images). Ty designs the armature, and Litvin, who founded local collective Knit One Then What, approaches the form intuitively. “I go into these meditative states and then I start knitting,” Litvin says. “There’s no predetermined design in mind, and I make up stitches as I go along.” –Meghan McEwen

THREAD CRED Clockwise from top: One of Litvin and Best’s collaborative sculptures; a close-up of the knitting; the stunning triptych of steel lights sheathed in the shimmering knit threads; and a work in progress.


Hang Time!


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It’s all about mood lighting this fall at Jayson Home and Garden—dark walls, texture and a sexy, golden glow. Senior merch and lighting guru Devin Kirk gives a quick-fire guide to lighting up. 1. Caravan Chandelier, $1,295: “It’s super dramatic in scale, but it still has a great earthy quality because of the burlap. Great with an oldtimey filament bulb.” 2. Antiqued Mirrored Lantern, $895: “It’s very vertical, so great in a space with height—or an entryway. It’s

really moody, because you’re getting a faint glow from the mirror, which gives off more ambient light. A little light spills out from the bottom, but it’s more about what’s seeping through.” 3. Smoke Droplet Chandelier, $1,835: “This is a classic shape, but the fact that it’s monochromatic makes it really modern and fun. If you want it extra moody for fall, add some lampshades. The beads are dark and smoky but since they’re glass, they reflect light. In a dark room, if that’s all you had lit, it would sparkle—but it would be a dark sparkle.” –MM


The collaboration between Ty Best (designer of Caste’s highly coveted furniture) and knitterphotographer-artist Michelle Litvin started with a scarf. Litvin knitted Best’s business partner, Brad Rowley, a scarf so beautiful it stopped people on the street—and prompted a visit to her studio. Best fell in love with a conical green shape hanging from a staircase and immediately started thinking about how it could be pulled, stretched and manipulated within a frame. “I was attracted to the undulation and feeling of deconstruction,” he says. The results are ethereal, loose-knit


1 1 9 W E S T H U B B A R D . F I F T H F L O O R . C H I C A G O , I L L I N O I S 6 0 6 5 4 . T E L . 3 1 2 8 9 3 7 5 9 0 . W W W. K A R A M A N N . C O M

The Mod Squad HOME FRONT


HEARTLAND ART From top: Dear Trusted Associate by Deb Sokolow; Cleave by Greely Myatt.

For the guys at Mod Construction—the hammer-andnails crew behind some of the biggest design feats on the nightclub circuit—it’s all about the details: imported English stone walls at Manor, über-modern lighting at Cuvee, and sleek wooden booths, walls and floors at Market. “One of the reasons people are attracted to working with me is because of the gorgeous woodwork… It might take a little longer, but it’s worth it. People can’t believe that it’s done by hand,” says 29-year-old owner Karl Spektor, whose first project was a beef stand/ pizzeria he opened in Lincoln Park seven years ago. He didn’t last long in the restaurant biz, but his phone kept ringing with construction inquiries. These days, Spektor, who runs a 100-person crew with dozens of high-profi le projects throughout the city, relies on a small stable of trusted designers, including Paul Kozlowski of D+K Architects, who designed the brand-new Cuvee, and Bill Ewert of Esyn Design, who drew up the plans for Avenue M, Manor, Stay and Market—the last of which he owns with Chicago White Sox general manager Kenny Williams. –CM

The Pickup Artists Stephanie Smith, the Smart Museum’s curator of contemporary art, knows there’s something special about the Heartland—that there’s more between New York and Los Angeles than rolling cornfields and rusting small towns. Smith, along with Netherlands-based Van Abbemuseum, set out on a grand two-year road trip from New Orleans to Minneapolis, through the plains of Ohio to Nebraska, exploring the vast ethos of the Midwest cultural landscape. In Omaha, she encountered tap dancing grandmothers. In Kansas City, she met the willfully silly performance artists Whoop Dee Doo. And in Detroit, she learned about Tree of Heaven Woodshop and its designminded exploration of Ailanthus altissima, an urban weed commonly referred to as “ghetto palm.” “We were trying to get outside some Kansas City-based performance artists Whoop Dee Doo. of the standard stories about the middle part of the country… that there’s not much happening between Los Angeles and New York,” Smith says. “It’s interesting to stretch out and see the similar energy enacted in communities around the whole region. There’s the same kind of energy.” The Heartland exhibit, which first showed in Eindhoven, has helped promote the Midwest internationally as a cultural draw, as well as reject some notions that “cultural capitals” in the U.S. only exist in two major cities. Among the local artists representing their hometown: Deb Sokolow, whose “smart and hilarious” 40-foot graphite-and-ink drawing wraps the museum walls, and Kerry James Marshall, whose Slow Dance painting is featured. Through Jan. 17, . –Colin McEwen 34 |


Fall 2009

CLUBSIDE COOL From left: The sleek interior of Market; imported stone walls and the ceiling of hanging light shades at Manor.


2,140 Th e number of miles between Giuliana and Bill Rancic’s Los Angeles and Chicago homes (now that's a commute!)



Good Stuff! Audrey Niffenegger wears many hats: teacher, artist, best-selling author of The Time Traveler’s Wife and the hotly anticipated, justreleased Her Fearful Symmetry, and taxidermy aficionado. “My first piece was a toad, which I got at the coolest garage sale ever, for 25 cents. He wasn’t super-excellently stuffed and in fact was somewhat un-toadlike. But I liked that he was imperfect; for the most part, it’s the pieces that are a bit cockeyed that most appeal to me. Like my one-eyed groundhog—he stands by the door as a greeter, wearing a bow because he was a birthday gift.” Niffenegger has amassed her 20-something strong collection over the past 25 years. Her pieces range from the armadillo on the coffee table to the dining room’s pedigreed badger, who hails from the famed Parisian taxidermy shop Deyrolle. Her latest piece, a tiny ermine from The Evolution Store in New York, has kept her company these past hectic months. “He has his paws arranged in an inquisitive position, like he’s wondering who you are. I like that about him.” –Kate Ancell

NESTING INSTINCT Audrey Niffenegger.

The luxe Nilson bed with linear frame by Piet Boon.

A black and white bathroom clad in Porcelanosa tile.

Sleeping Beauty In these too-connected times, sleep is the greatest luxury. And when it comes to sleeping well, the ultimate soporific may well be a Nilson bed, which just made its U.S. debut at Haute Living. Designed to keep snoozers cooler in summer and warmer in winter, the chemical-free creations are handmade in the Netherlands from pure wool, uncompromised cotton and natural horsehair (don’t even think 36 |


Fall 2009

“mattress”). Finished with smart headboards and frames by designer Piet Boon, these naturally sumptuous and unmistakably stylish beds are the ultimate indulgence. Priced between $20,000 and $23,000, Nilson beds can be customized to any size (several NBA players sack out on them) and fashioned to meet the firmness requirements of two bodies at once. Pair one of these babies with some Pratesi sheets, and you might never leave. –Thomas Connors

Tile and flooring company Porcelanosa has spread its wares on castles, hotels and high-end boutiques everywhere from Paris to Palm Beach, and now the goods are arriving at the Mart. Known for its high-designed, well-priced kitchen, bath and spa materials, the Spanish company will open an almost 8,000-square-foot, open-tothe-public space. From beyond mod tiles to high-tech eco offerings like porcelain floors that look exactly like perfectly aged hardwood, the showroom may just become Chicago headquarters for finish junkies of all stripes. –AAM


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Power Point



By Alexandria Abramian-Mott

Frédérique Morrel’s My Dear needlepoint tapestry, $7,250, at

Ready for the latest chapter in haute home ec? Needlepoint is making a modern comeback with some cutting-edge coziness—and we’re not just talking pillows. Instead, needlepoint is stitching its way onto less expected places, including benches, chairs, poufs and—get this—even bowls. But the winner for the craziest application of the bygone craft goes to Parisian artist/designer Frédérique Morrel. At this year’s Maison & Objet, her life-size fiberglass pieces that she created with vintage needlepoint tapestries made serious waves. Definitely not what granny had in mind!

Jubilee needlepoint cushion with pins by Lucinda Chambers, $450, at

Industreal’s DIY embroidered bowl kit, $223, at

Antwerp Chair in Suzani patterned needlepoint, $1,698, at

Edward Van Vliet’s Donut pouf, $4,367– $5,401, at (Luminaire and Jules Seltzer).

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good desIgn

InterIor desIgn servIces + home furnIshIngs boutIque

Inspiration Station Check out storefront window installations (Pivot, Colori, Niche) by Indo Projects (Linsey Burritt and interior designer Crystal Grover). “These girls are sick talented.”



In the Bag! Current tote obsession: Tree Theory Bags. They’re made locally from salvaged material (like billboard vinyl and seatbelts), recyclable and repairable.

Cover Art “I’m a huge, huge, huge book and ’zine lover, and I’m super excited about featherproof books, a small Chicago indie book publishing company.”

Union Worker Digital tastemaker Margot Harrington steps out from behind her blog, Pitch Design Union, to share some eye candy By Meghan McEwen Photography by Maia Harms

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For graphic designer, extended member of the Post Family artist collective, and design blogger extraordinaire Margot Harrington, getting laid off was “the best worst thing that has ever happened.” When this Jayson Home and Garden alum lost her graphic design job at Kaleidoscope, it jumpstarted her career into high-flying creative gear. These days, when 27-year-old Harrington isn’t updating her wildly addictive blog, Pitch Design Union, she’s collaborating with other inspiring artist friends (she just helped wrap up Proximity magazine’s first photography issue) and working on a one-off line of screen-printed furniture, like the adorable mod ottoman she created for Post

Daily Double Using her own design, Harrington screenprinted this vintage ottoman’s fabric by hand as part of Post 27’s Ottomania show ($230).

27, where she also logs part-time hours as the goto graphics gal and assistant shopkeeper. As for her steadily burgeoning design blog—covet-central among local design and print junkies—it’s more than just a place to post the prettiest eye candy around (everything from folk art-style paintings by Clare Rojas to beautiful Globe bicycles from Portland). It has also exposed her to a supportive creative community and a fiercely independent, go-get-’em, do-it-yourself spirit. “It’s really amazing how much people are doing for themselves,” she says. “Even if they’re just painting a bathroom, they’re creating color. It’s about creating a community to share ideas and get things done.”


On the Wall “I have a serious art-crush on Sonnenzimmer, the genius poster and art-making duo,” says Harrington. (Smalltown Supersound poster, left). She’s also smitten with artist Clare Rojas, whose brightly colored folk art, like Goddess with Birds of Space (upper left), is available through the Kavi Gupta gallery.

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When getting the look right is everything, these Chicago style insiders don’t just wear it—they live it By Amalie Drury | Photography by Anthony Tahlier

Looking chic—or helping clients look chic—when they walk out the door might be the first priority of most Chicago retail and design professionals whose jobs place them under the blanket term “fashionista.” But, not surprisingly when it comes to a group whose personal aesthetics can make or break their careers, the style credo often translates to the look of their living spaces—and their various obsessions with fabrics, textures and accessories don’t stop with dresses and handbags. Tricia Turnstall, founder and senior partner of forward-thinking Damen Avenue boutique p.45, doesn’t spend as much time as she’d like in her 1,000-squarefoot Bucktown loft. “I’m usually home only at night, since the store is open seven days a week,” she says. Still, Turnstall has found ways to make her loft an oasis fitting for someone who’s been widely praised as a pioneer of Chicago’s current fashion scene. She’s called the loft home for close to six years, and credits friend and p.45 client Jordana Joseph for using her interior 42 |


Fall 2009

designer’s eye to express Turnstall’s signature look in an environment rather than an outfit. “She was the perfect person to collaborate with, because we have a similar viewpoint on fashion and how it translates into interiors,” Turnstall says. Te pair’s first project in the loft was Turnstall’s fireplace wall. “I’d been saving some three-dimensional white ceramic square tiles from Abode until Jordana found the right look for them,” she says. “We paired them with geometric subtle cream wallpaper and brown penny tiles—I love the juxtaposition of materials and shapes against the rugged brick walls.” Every new season in fashion inspires Turnstall to think about making changes at home, but for now, the store is the focus of most of her creative energy. “Jordana and I are thinking about creating a cork wall in my living area so I have a place to display ideas and create looks,” she says. A feature in the March issue of fashion bible W magazine about Chicago designers Shane Gabier and Christopher Peters touted the “homespun sensibility” and “rustic, charming” quality of the clothes in their two-year-old line, Creatures of the Wind (which they create in collaboration with a rotating cast of art- and design-world friends). Te aesthetic translates seamlessly to the pair’s home, a Humboldt Park two-flat graystone they co-own with another couple. Gabier and Peters live on the 1,500-square-foot first floor and work out of a lower-level studio. Tough the two are the first to espouse the benefits of working as a team, they don’t need help when it comes to tracking down pieces for their home. “We know exactly what we continued...

ULTIMATE MINIMALISTS From top: The owners of Gamma Player apply the same black and white rules to their own home; Yoko Uozumi and Jeff Mills in their spare, chic Lakeview abode.

Living room by greg giLLis

Fashion Houses



“We’re both into Japanese folk and craft aesthetics, ethnographic objects and anything that suggests mysticism.” –shane gabier MIX MASTER Tricia Turnstall is all about mixing pattern and texture.

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...continued like, and when something belongs in our space,” says Gabier. Almost anything goes, as long as it’s perfect. “I love late ’60s to early ’70s Scandinavian interiors, artisan textiles and folk-inspired ceramics, while Chris is drawn to clean Georgian and Victorian lines. We’re both into Japanese folk and craft aesthetics, ethnographic objects and anything that suggests mysticism or spiritual symbology.” As with the clothing they design, unexpected combinations of textures, materials and colors interest them most. In their living room, for instance, “we like the dialogue that’s created by the blend of pieces from 19th-century China, with lighting and furniture from the ’20s, ’30s, ’60s and ’70s.” Even as they prepare to churn out the fourth season of their line (carried at Hejfina in Chicago, and also at stores in New York, L.A., Portland and Hong Kong), Gabier and Peters can’t stop tweaking the look of their home. Next up: a garden overhaul and bathroom renovation. On a different side of the city in an East Lakeview townhouse, another creative and personal partnership—Jeff Mills and Yoko Uozumi, the husband-and-wife owners of edgy Division Street boutique Gamma Player—has created a serene place to unwind. Mills is a renowned DJ whose BREAKING HOUSE RULES! From top left: Fashion musical taste pervades Gamma designers Chris Peters and Shane Gabier at home Player in the form of soundtracks with their fantastically esoteric collections; details and “themes” for each season of one of their interesting vignettes. (from spring through fall of this year, they’ve used the Oscar Niemeyer-designed architecture and seaside setting of Rio de Janeiro’s dramatic, flower-shaped Modern Art Museum of Niteroi to inform their merchandise and décor choices for Gamma Player—clothes in aqua hues and temporary elements like huge tanks of water and dozens of potted sea plants). Uozumi is the store’s womenswear buyer and connoisseur of all things newly discovered. Te two are world travelers (especially Jeff, who plays DJ sets around the globe), and their home reflects the clean, calm and consistent vibe of some of their favorite minimalist hotels, like the Delano in Miami. “We just wanted to make it very simple and comfortable,” Uozumi says. In their 1,600-square-foot space, the thoughtful layout and lack of clutter are key, and the pervading color palette is black and white. Te dining room is the hub of Mills and Uozumi’s home, a place where they often sit and brainstorm for hours. Te walls of the room are lined with bookshelves, and, Mills says, “When we’re discussing design and promotional ideas, it’s useful to have a large table and our book collection at arm’s length.” Te couple uses their living room to chill out and listen to new music created by Jeff. “We don’t have a huge TV; we’d rather use the room to talk, have tea. It’s those precious quiet moments at home that matter,” says Uozumi. When describing a painting she loves in the room, Uozumi hits on the essence of the couple’s aesthetic. “It’s a black and white and gray piece; abstract. We like abstract paintings because they give us ideas,” she says. “When things have too much detail, they don’t give us space to think.”

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The latest batch of design books celebrates the high life at its highest By Alina Sookasian

David Hicks Dubbed interior designer of an entire generation (after all, the Nixon-era White House used his wallpaper), über-decorator David Hicks transformed modern design with his one-of-a-kind combos of Victorian antiques, mod furniture and abstract paintings. Worshipped by celebrities, high society and royalty alike, Hicks is still one of design’s most imitated icons. In David Hicks: A Life of Design (Rizzoli, $65), son Ashley explores the personal side of his father’s eccentric life via family photos, journals and scrapbooks. Classic Hicks-o-philes are not to worry: Tere are still hundreds of images of the designer’s drop-dead rooms to enjoy.

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More is More

In House With more than 200 images capturing the work of Australian photographer Derry Moore (Nest Magazine, Architectural Digest) over a nearly 35year career, In House (Rizzoli, $60) features some of the world’s most decadent houses. Moroccan palaces, Scottish castles, Indian Art Deco masterpieces, cluttered apartments and Spartan mansions are all in the mix, as are some extremely unusual abodes, such as a London home that borders on a museum of the macabre. Moore, who is also the 12th Earl of Drogheda, has the eye to draw out the elegance of it all while giving readers a privileged peek into very private lives.

More is definitely more with Hutton Wilkinson’s megatome about legendary designer Tony Duquette. Going beyond the theatrical, opulent surface, Wilkinson delves into Duquette’s personal beliefs and the artistic processes that inspired his lifelong passions: jewelry, artwork, sculpture, gardens and, of course, interiors. More is More (Abrams, $75) captures the designer’s singular vision. As one of the original high-low decorators and a style icon for multiple generations, Duquette’s over-the-top opulence is still a benchmark for design buffs the world over.

The WellDressed Home So you’re intimidated by home design? Photographer Karyn R. Millet has some simple advice for you: Check out your closet. In Te Well-Dressed Home (Crown Publishing Group, $35), textile designer Annette Tatum and Millet reveal how fashion and interiors are indeed closely tied together. Introducing a unique approach to home décor, the photo-filled book illustrates the parallel between runway and home. Tatum reveals 11 of the most universal fashion styles (including romantic, classic and casual) and shows how DIY decorators can channel those preferences to create dream rooms of their own.

Hue If you’ve missed Kelly Wearstler since Top Design hit the skids, now’s your chance to get another dose of the interior design goddess. In her latest coffee-table book, Hue (Ammo Books, $44.95), the decorator rides upon the success of Modern Glamour, this time exploring her very own use of color. Consisting of both residential and commercial projects, the 288-page paean to high-glam, bigcolor style showcases Wearstler’s newest hotel, restaurant and boutique projects, along with sneak peeks into her new West Hollywood studio and her bursting-with-color Beverly Hills home.

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THE CONTRAPTION The Strange Decanter,

$1,470, THE CLAIM More than just a decanter,

this is a piece of sculpture that perfectly marries form and function. THE SKINNY “Looks like a Christmas antler ornament. It’s got a pretty cool design, very fragile. But in terms of wine, I think it’s more about presentation. Not really going to decant because the amount of air at the top is very, very small.” THE BOTTOM LINE “Pure beauty. If you like that kind of art or want something to show off, it’s fi ne. But it’s not going to do much for the wine.”


DESIGN THE POUR PRO Fernando Beteta at Nomi.

THE CONTRAPTION Claudio Colucci’s Carafe

Un Verre, $115, THE CLAIM Mouth-blown from a single piece of

glass, this carafe claims that as the bottle is emptied, the wine glass within remains full. While allowing the wine to aerate, the decanter also serves as a “poetic visual” on the table. THE SKINNY “It’s like having a fork in your stove. You can’t drink out of that. It doesn’t even look like it really works. Plus, it would be a nightmare to clean.” THE BOTTOM LINE “For $115, no way! You don’t want to even put any wine inside. It’s like those bottles with the ships in them.” THE CONTRAPTION Tord Boontje & Emma

Wine Spectacle THE CONTRAPTION Riedel Duck Decanter, $279,

Form or function? Nomi’s master sommelier spills the secrets on the latest design crop of wine decanters By Kate Parham Photography by John Sturdy

Wine decanters, the designer objet de l’année, have been flooding the home accessories market faster than we can even uncork a bottle. But with the ridiculous variety of shapes, sizes and pouring options, how does one even begin to separate which gadgets lead by a nose and which gizmos are better off left in the cellar? We’ve enlisted Fernando Beteta, the master behind the wine list at the award-winning Nomi Restaurant, to spill the goods on A-list aeration. 48 |


Fall 2009 THE CLAIM An elongated shape provides a generous

surface area and the wide mouth simplifies filling, while the curved handle makes the wellbalanced vessel very comfortable to hold. THE SKINNY “Well, it will actually work. You would find it in a fine dining restaurant used by somebody who needs a little extra help with pouring. Remember, you want to decant wine to let it breathe. This one has that. And you could put it on the table because it’s so elegant. Riedel is the expert at making decanters and they make some for $60-$70 that work just as well.” THE BOTTOM LINE “If you’re willing to fork out almost $300 for a decanter, you better have some really serious wine to put inside.”

Woffenden Transglass Decanter, $96, THE CLAIM Made from recycled wine and beer bottles, the decanter has raw edges that are sanded and polished. THE SKINNY “Th is is a pretty straightforward pitcher. It looks like it should just be for water. One thing I always try to tell people is to appreciate the color of wine. With the colored tint of the bottle, you can’t do that. You’re not really decanting because you’re just pouring one bottle into another: $100 down the drain.” THE BOTTOM LINE “It’s a broken wine bottle that won’t decant. The color won’t enhance your fine wine experience. Just no.”

See what great decorative painting can be.

DesignRed | Decorative Painting Showroom 114 North Aberdeen Street Chicago, Illinois 60607 T: 312 841 0100

Neighborhood Watch


With such a happening design scene in Chicago, it’s easy to overlook our talented neighbors in Milwaukee, Detroit and beyond. Spanning a radius no more than an afternoon away, we caught up with the cutting-edge, proving the Midwest is anything but middle of the road By Meghan McEwen


Hongtao Zhou’s Spinning Table.

The Spin-ster Armed with an interdisciplinary Ph.D. in engineering and product design, Madison-based Hongtao Zhou is a sustainable furniture design geek. From his impact-free ice furniture created entirely from materials from the lake to the minimal Crossed Fingers stool, which can be manufactured in less than two minutes (it requires no tools or hardware for assembly and collapses completely flat!), Zhou’s work is all about enviro impact and lifespan. Too conceptual? Zhou’s Spinning table is made from woodshop scraps on a spool. The best part? “Kids can play with the legs and change the shape,” he says.

Sibling Revival Brothers Paul and Vincent Georgeson drummed up some big-time buzz this year at ICFF for their distinct retro-industrial aesthetic, walking away with the highly coveted Editors Award for being the brightest, most promising new designers. Working mainly with steel and solid, locally grown walnut and maple (“That helps our furniture maintain that timeless, classic look,” says Paul), the Georgesons infused their debut collection with a shot of powdercoated color and contemporary bravado: clean-lined walnut legs that slide into stamped steel brackets; impressive pinwheel joinery; and thoughtful, keen details. The graceful Eileen lamp has a pivot shade and uses a wall for support, while the geometric, steel-backed Lockwood chair comes with or without

a Maharam wool felt pad “to cozy up the aesthetic.” The brothers, who first hatched a plan for their company, Misewell (say “might as well” really fast), while they were industrial design students at the University of Wisconsin, spend a lot of time these days touring factory plants, drawing inspiration from the manufacturers’ capabilities. “These guys have been around for 100 years. There’s just so much knowledge there,” says Paul. “It’s a huge benefit of having manufacturing so close.” And while Paul is based in Minneapolis and Vincent is in Milwaukee, a constant back-and-forth collaboration—daily conversations, weekly video chats and monthly face-to-face meetups—keeps them up to speed. “None of our products belongs to just one of us. We have a really good connection, and we’re so comfortable with each other,” says Paul. “We always agree.”

Creative Hub Named for late nights and the busy, restless minds of designers, Disturbed Sleep is a new Detroitbased collective comprising seven architecture-schooled members to help fight the industrial and creative decline of the region. “Our city is not just an automotive and manufacturing center, but a place where art, design and new ideas are created,” says founder and designer Dane Barnes. “There are still skilled craftsmen here who learned their trade by working with their hands.” Find proof in the handmade collection. FROM THE STUMP Section End Table by VanderGoot Ezban Studio for Disturbed Sleep.

... 50 |


Fall 2009


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Digital Craft As the head of the 3D program at Cranbrook Academy of Art, Scott Klinker has a job most designers only dream about. He lives and works at the beautiful Eliel Saarinen-designed campus (Eero Saarinen, Charles Eames, Daniel Libeskind, Florence Knoll and Harry Bertoia’s old stomping ground), but he also has his own practice—Scott Klinker Product Design—with the built-in freedom to design innovative pieces and push the boundaries of technique and technology. Klinker worked with a computer-controlled milling machine to cut out birch ply and bright laminates for the recent Truss Collection for Context Furniture. And for Offi, he experimented with a nonwoven thermoplastic that feels like felt to create a large-scale construction kit for kids. “That’s one exciting aspect of being in Michigan—an actual manufacturing industry to work with,” says Klinker, who has had the privilege of heading into factories “to play” with cool new materials. “It’s my responsibility to experiment, because I can,” he says. This fall, Klinker sees his latest experiment hit the mass market: a Japaneseinfluenced “Mix Modern” line of case goods, beds and wire chairs at Art Van.

TECHNOCRATI From top: The Library Desk from the Truss Collection; Spaceframe builders kit for little ones.

Machine-Chic Cleveland Art has been using recycled and vintage pieces salvaged from old buildings and shuttered factories to turn out super unique, industrial pieces—steel work and dining tables, vintage factory carts and machine table lamps—for the past 15 years. Owner-designer Jason Wein, who fashions the furniture and blows glass for the lighting from his studio in Cleveland, recently opened a second, 7,000-square-foot location in L.A. to better service an A-list clientele and their burgeoning TV and movie-set niche.

An exquisitely high-end furniture company founded by three guys from Grand Rapids, Michigan, Pieter VanTuyl (a contraction of a member’s family name and the meaning of Pieter as “stone cutter”) is an ode to the old Dutch craftsmanship of the region. “There are all these handicraftsmen left over from the heyday of Grand Rapids,” says designer Tod Babick. Composed entirely of pieces that relate to the foyer, their first collection (called “The Poetry of Arrival”)—benches, hallway mirror and hand-embroidered felt rug—is informed by a hardworking, Shaker-like sensibility that incorporates thoughtful and intricate, natureinspired details. The Table Bench, a showstopper with floral ornamentation filled with beeswax, goes one step further with spindles that are not evenly spaced. “Every dimension is derived from a pattern in nature—the Golden Section,” says Babick. “It’s how teeth grow and shells and [explains] the spiraling patterns of sunflowers.” CRAFT WORK Clockwise from top: The hand-carved Hall Mirror; Babick makes the walnut handle of this broom with a spoke shave, before sending it to Berea College Crafts for the handmade corn braid; the Slate Table features secret details that represents a cyclical theme, like a carved pear shape and hidden seeds; the Shaker Bench.

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Carving Artists

Play Grounds



Cubicles? Not a chance. At design firm Binth’s office digs, try customdesigned furniture, beyond-cool art and building blocks that rock! By Kelly Aiglon | Photography by Anthony Tahlier

Linnea Gits has an obsession. Te co-owner (with Suzanna Bierwirth and husband Peter Dunham) of the local design studio Binth spends a lot of time on eBay. “It’s like going down the rabbit hole; I go looking for something, then one thing leads to another, and another, and another,” she says. Te same can be said about their studio. Step into what appears to be an unassuming brick warehouse in Fulton Market and countless surprises await. From the entryway wall that doubles as a floor-to-ceiling bookshelf to the corridor adorned with framed woodblock prints from Rixdorfer, an obscure German artist collective, you can’t help but feel steered from one arresting visual element to the next. “The practical yet artistic sense of space is very much a part of who we are as designers,” says Gits, who has an illustration/ fine art background and is commissioned for major ad campaigns, while Dunham creates installations and imagery for the likes of Herman Miller. Tanks to their collective pedigree and the major cult following of staple products (such as a modern screenprinted baby book and alphabet print), Binth garners international attention. But despite 54 |


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the huge success, operations are intimate. Teir high-ceilinged, 2,500-square-foot space is shared with two cats, Gung and Monkey, and a rotating slate of freelance designers who work from Eames Aluminum Group chairs. Unsurprisingly, there’s not a cubicle in sight. Te highlight of the studio is a reception area, where Gits and Dunham display existing work alongside products in development (limited-edition building blocks!). Dunham, who’s also an expert woodworker (his shop is on the lower level), handcrafted a stunning redwood table that could be labeled anything but “conference” with its white laminate top. From there, you can view the sleek bookshelf holding collectibles and texts that the designers constantly turn to for inspiration: Wooden toy animals by Danish designer Kay Bojesen rest alongside antique playing cards and books about everything from Gaudí to Hans Christian Andersen. Te nod to fairy tales is not lost on Gits and Dunham, who use whimsical imagery like dancing bears, octopi and creepy insects in their designs. Says Gits: “What we do is probably more like fables than anything. You can imagine a story behind it.”

office ace! Clockwise from top left: Dunham and Gits, with Moonlight painting by anna Kunz; a Binth studio vignette; bookshelves full of inspiration; sleek kitchen rehab; a painting by John Vincent tacked to their corkboard wall; and Binth memory cards.

Shelf Life By Wendy Wong



Who says you actually have to read the classics? If you’re in the market to look learned without purchasing a few tons of coffee-table finds, we’ve got the goods for getting booked. Brit designer Tracy Kendall goes vertical with a wall covering that looks like neatly stacked piles of paperbacks and magazines, while Abigail Ahern plays it sloppy-chic with her images of haphazardly placed paperbacks. And if you’re looking to go graphic, opt for either Blik or Jane Mount’s latest collections that give the illusion of hanging shelves filled with primary-toned tomes!

Fornasetti’s Ex Libris, $130/role, at

Blik’s Me, Myshelf, and I wallpaper, $40, at

Jane Mount’s Ideal Bookshelf 1, $20–$200, at

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Tracy Kendall’s Stacked Paperback wallpaper, $350/roll, at

Bookcase wallpaper, $284/roll, at atelier

GIDDY UP Cheryl Pope’s faux fur sawhorses. HOME FRONT


UP, UP AND AWAY! Photographer Carrie Schneider’s Self Portrait (levitating) 2, ), 22009.

Rising Stars An exclusive clutch of promising art talent livens up the scene with fairy tale-inspired photography and faux-fur sawhorses By Jessica Cochran

Dazzle Camouflage (for Peter), 2008.

The Lens Chaser Carrie Schneider, one of Chicago’s brightest, creates large photographs that appeal to our emotional impulses, using gorgeous imagery without forfeiting intellectual content. Her works, which include self-portraits and constructed scenes in temporal landscapes, local bars or artist studios, are inspired by myriad influences: Freud, the history of painting, classic Hollywood and fairy tales, to name a few. In the self-portrait Queen of this Island, Schneider wears a sculpted juniper headdress and gazes sideways at the camera, convincing us she is royalty. And in Dazzle Camouflage (for Peter), a black and white “op art” canoe floats on a lake, dramatically popping out of a brilliant blue background. Boasting recent exhibitions everywhere from New York to Greece and Istanbul to Azerbaijan, curators worldwide have noticed Schneider's amazing eye. Besides an October residency with photography demigod Rineke Dijkstra at the Atlantic Center for the Arts, Schneider will have a 12x12 exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Art in December, an honor exclusively given to Chicago’s top emerging artists. In a city known for photography, Schneider stands out for her capacity to join impactful imagery with sophisticated content. According to critic Alicia Eler, Schneider “has an uncanny ability to capture space and time.” While recent projects have taken her to Helsinki and South Florida, Schneider spends much time behind the lens here in Chicago. Her works, which liven a living space as much as they do a gallery, are available through Monique Meloche Gallery,

Originally from Palos Park, Cheryl Pope is a fiber and materials artist who creates colorful sewn garments and furniture that double as sculptures and installation art. Particularly compelling are her sawhorse sculptures—unexpectedly animate objects covered in faux fur and arranged leaning against each other. Like other contemporary fiber artists who take a political approach, Pope’s work is informed by everything from Obama’s victory and the health care crisis to her personal identity as a teaching artist. Recently called out in The New York Times for her fuzzy, colorful sawhorse sculptures at Bucktown boutique Robin Richmond, Pope has found success that straddles the world of fashion and art. Her installation Army of One was displayed in New Insight, Art Chicago’s exhibition showing top Master of Fine Art students from the country’s elite art programs. With a current focus on halves (think unexpected garments sewn together or crazy furniture mash-ups), Pope keeps busy working on her new collection of fashion and furniture in her Logan Square studio. On the outside, you’ll find her teaching Fashion Camp to youth at the School of the Art Institute, running art classes at the Museum of Contemporary Art, or in class at the School of the Art Institute, where, in her final year of graduate school, she studies under the likes of art star faculty Nick Cave.

... 58 |


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The Fiberista







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The Folk Modernist

SLEEPER SUCCESS Rob Davis and Mike Langlois’ The Resurrection2, 22009.

Known for her unique approach to perspective, Anne Toebbe is widely considered a singular voice in the Chicago art scene. With a stylistic approach she calls “folk modern,” Toebbe’s canvases are mostly of colorful Burning Down the and quirky interiors, painted Second House, 2008 with an energizing mastery of depth and composition. After studying at Yale and spending time in Brooklyn, she met the legendary painters Amy Sillman and Fred Tomaselli at a residency in Skowhegan. It was then that Toebbe, a sculptor at the time, discovered her passion and coined herself a painter. Now the artist, who regularly incorporates the flat and colorful graphic techniques of modernism’s greats like Matisse in a convincing and contemporary manner, is well on her way. She was one of 10 finalists chosen out of a whopping 3,600 at the prestigious West Prize Competition exhibition, brainchild of the famous Philadelphia-based West Collection, and her work will be on special display at the most recent edition of the local NEXT art fair. Next up? A solo show at Steven Zevitas Gallery in Boston this December.

The Realists

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The Geo-Naturalist With bodies of work that include both geometric abstraction and stunning images of nature, photographer John Opera shoots with the eye of someone who has survived long, cold winters. His abstract compositions contain brilliant layers of milky whites and subtle grays. Capturing fleeting moments of spectacular light, his nature photographs teach us how a forest’s graceful constellations of activity transcend winter SUBJECT MATTERS dormancy. Born in Buffalo, Opera completed Above, from left: a degree in photography at SUNY New Paltz Forest, 2008, and before heading to the School of the Art Institute Purple Diamond, 2007. of Chicago, where he was awarded a prestigious Weinstein Fellowship in 2005. One of three emerging artists selected for the Museum of Contemporary Photography’s 2009 MP3 survey of new photography, Opera has enviably found his way into the programs of two elite Chicago galleries: Andrew Rafacz Gallery and Shane Campbell Gallery. But forget how great they look hanging in a showroom; Opera’s lush, ethereal forest scenes and blurred, minimalist geometric patterns seem destined for the walls of a savvy collector.


Taking cues from every corner of visual culture, Rob Davis and Mike Langlois collaboratively create representational paintings that are characterized by incredible use of color and unusual, often politically charged realism. Painting everything from portraits of their fathers to depictions of cultural icons, they hope that by combining mundane subjects with unusual landscapes, colors and other references, their work will illicit consideration about big ideas. Take the painting How Can You Buy or Sell the Sky, a painted transcript of a 19th-century Pacific Northwestern Native American chief’s denouncement of the destruction of the environment. Painted in Farsi to imply urgency, this painting visually connects disparate cultural fragments in a startlingly global way. It all started in 1997 in a printmaking class at the School of the Art Institute, when the two students met and became self-described “chums.” Within a year, Davis and Langlois were working exclusively together on collaborations fueled by a mutual dedication and trust that has only intensified over the years. The dynamic duo have shown at an impressive list of galleries nationwide, including Steve Turner Contemporary in Los Angeles, Charest-Weinberg in Miami, and Monique Meloche in Chicago. They were also the recipients of a 12x12 exhibition at the MCA Chicago, organized by rapidly rising curator Julie Rodrigues Widholm.

Graphic Content



By Wendy Wong

Forgo tried-and-true autumnal hues this fall—design’s heavy hitters are flocking toward opposite ends of the color spectrum. First up on the high-contrast palette: Dutch designer Sander Mulder’s ode to man’s best friend, a puppy-shaped music system that sports a speaker in place of a head. Looking to take it to the wall? Opt for Tracy Kendall’s feather-print wallpaper. And if you want to go out on a (missing) limb, each piece in artist Herb Williams’ collection of bunny rabbits, sculpted entirely of Crayola crayons, comes with a missing ear, leg or tail!

Tracy Kendall’s Open Feather wallpaper, $130/roll, at

Sander Mulder’s Woofer Speaker Set, $1,955, at

CB2’s Dandelion square plates, $4.95-$12.95, at

Herb Williams’ Crayon Rabbit Sculpture, $12,000, at

Kelly Wearstler’s Ceramic Spiral Dish, $295, at

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INTERIOR HERO Set designer Brian Sidney Bembridge in his set-worthy home studio.

Brian Sidney Bembridge A Lookingglass Theatre Company board member and artistic associate at Timeline, set designer Brian Sidney Bembridge was recently nominated for two Jeff Awards for his work on The History Boys and The Maids. In addition to his award-winning, spot-on sets, Bembridge once worked for famed Chicago decorator Alessandra Branca. Big secret you scored working with Alessandra Branca? How

to mix and match classic with modern design. In one room we paired green Zuber wallpaper with an existing bamboo chandelier we repainted and funky bright gold curtains we designed. Most important lesson you’ve learned about home design from the set? How to bring theatricality to the home, to

look at our home the same way I look at the stage… Most people might hang a few pieces of art, but we covered an entire wall in our place from floor to ceiling. “Oh my God, you have so much crap.” I’m kind of a hodgepodge-y person. We have jars of beach glass from beaches all over the world. I like rusty, crusty things. I don’t know why.

What do people say about your home?

The Up-Stagers

What’s the biggest design feat you’ve accomplished in a set?

La Luna Muda with Lookingglass. We did things that never should have been done in that tiny little space: We put a high wire over the audience, had people singing on a ladder hanging from the ceiling and scenery that appeared out of thin air.

Tricks of the stage inspire Chicago’s hottest set designers to turn up the creativity at home By Tate Gunnerson | Photography by Jeremy Bustos

Taking old objects and making them into lighting is fun. We have really round Christmas lights with C7 bulbs above our chandelier in our house all the time. We think they’re festive and fun. We just staple them up. It’s simple.

What should people know about lighting?

Designing a deliberately ugly room would be anathema for an interior designer. But for a theater set designer, a stage decked out with cracked linoleum tiles, avocado kitchen appliances and wallto-wall shag might mean a Tony. It’s all about the story. While designers of interiors and stage often have very different goals, the challenges—think fussy clients and time and budget constraints— are very much the same. Despite the limitations, they create overthe-top, mind-bending environments that transport audiences from time and place. And along the way, these set designers have picked up a few tricks for their own spaces. While the whole world may indeed be a stage, for most people, the plot plays out at home.

INSIDE JOB Bembridge’s wildly creative home and studio space.

Unexpected style secret: Drive-by shopping: finding things

on the street. It’s free and the best form of recycling. I found a hairdresser’s cabinet with a stainless steel top. I repainted the cabinet and use it for my supplies. Secret sources:

I’m a Salvage One, Architectural Artifacts,

Nadeau junkie. ... 64 |


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dining by design

chicago the mart november 5-7


Honorary Chair Maria Pinto invites you to experience DIFFA’s DINING BY DESIGN 2009, a feast for the eyes, body and heart featuring the most dynamic and innovative dining environments ever created. Join us at The Merchandise Mart for CoCkTaIlS BY DESIGN, PrE-Gala vIEwING, TaBlE HoP & TaSTE and the DBD Gala .


Debuting this year, our BElIEvE tables featuring designs by Maria Pinto, Francine Turk, Frank Ponterio Interior Design, Gary Lee Partners, jamesthomas, llc, Kadlec Design and Architecture, Kathy Taslitz, Kaufman Segal, Morgante Wilson Architects, Richar Interiors, Soucie Horner, ltd., Stephanie Wohlner, Thomas Stringer Design Partners. Become a BElIEvEr. Experience this brilliant blast of cuisine, creativity and spectacle. For more information and to buy tickets, go to



Redmoon Theatre’s Frank Maugeri and Jim Lasko You’re just as likely to see Redmoon Theatre showing one of its psychedelic, dreamlike performances at Millennium Park or a church hall as on a traditional stage. Emphasizing design over story, Redmoon’s known for its collaborative creative process, an approach that yields fantastical sets using gadgetry, puppetry, ephemera and DIY installations. Nothing’s off limits. Artistic director Frank Maugeri and resident artist Jim Lasko are currently planning for the upcoming season’s winter pageant, in which a cavernous warehouse space will be transformed into a magical wonderland.

How Redmoon has influenced your own homes: Frank Maugeri: We really believe in aesthetic

arrest, making even the simplest things or the most crudely made things really beautiful in whatever form or shape they take. Jim Lasko: I papier-mâchéd my piano with burgundy paper, and I think it’s very beautiful. Signature style: FM:

Chicago is a working-class city made of lumber and metal and fire and earth and muscle and energy. Sometimes we lean directly to that and sometimes we create a cartoon of that. What’s the biggest design feat you’ve accomplished in a set? FM: The adaptation of the film The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari.

The set was a replica of a cabinet of curiosities with doors that opened to reveal numerous devices, objects and styles of puppetry being manipulated by performers. It was extraordinarily cinematic. Unexpected style secret: JL:

Mix kids’ art with other things, and it works really well. Kids’ art doesn’t have to suck. A set is never complete without: JL: A coffin or other image of

death: skeleton, dried flowers, winter branches…

READY, SET, WHOA! Above: Two over-the-top Redmoon sets that show off Maugeri and Lasko’s eccentric creativity.

Secret weapon: FM: Hot glue guns. Last minute, it’s going to hold it together. JL: Black Sharpies. I use them to disguise mishaps of all kinds.


Guilty pleasure: FM: Martha Stewart Living magazine. She can pull color together, man.

Redmoon designers Frank Maugeri and Jim Lasko.

Secret sources: FM:

American Science and Surplus, Bloom magazine, Uncle Fun, Kennicot Florals and Lost Eras.

Todd Rosenthal Currently working on more than five different new sets, Todd Rosenthal’s career continues to scale new heights—kind of like his sets, which often feature skylights, multiple levels and soaring ceilings. He once created a three-story home with a dollhouse view for Steppenwolf’s production of August: Osage County—which ultimately scored him a Tony Award— and judging by the sheer number of intricate models that dot his studio, he’s not slowing down anytime soon. Every time you work on a project, make sure you have a point of view—something that makes it your own, that makes it different from every other project, whether it’s playing with realism or perspective, or using a color that’s unusual or interesting. No matter what you’re doing, being unspecific and generic isn’t really interesting.

On the overlap between home and set design:

Biggest difference: An interior designer selects a sofa that complements the

other furnishings and the wall color. A set designer paints the sofa yellow and bolts it to the ceiling. Interior designers are designing a space for people to live in and a set designer is looking to create maximum impact. Just like any designer, you have to imagine yourself in the space. Architects sometimes design quads for universities, and don’t pave the quad until they let people walk. Then they pave the sidewalks where people walk. I What rules can you take from the stage and apply to the home?

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apply the same world to design. You have to imagine people in this world and how they’re going to live. How do you define good design? There has to be a sense

that people live there. Even if the walls are 50 feet tall and covered with clown noses, they still have to sit in a chair, they still have to use a table and speak to each other. I think it was Robert Edmond Jones, a famous American set designer, who said, “It is in the arrangement of the chair that the magic lies.”

HOUSED PROUD From top left: Milwaukee Repertory Theatre’s A Month in the Country; The Alliance Theatre Company’s Doubt; and the set of August: Osage County.











Invigorate your style–view the work of talented interior designers as they use the world’s largest collection of home furnishings to create the ultimate home. OPEN TO THE PUBLIC - THE MERCHANDISE MART - FIRST FLOOR S P O N S O R ED B Y



The Graduate Once the Holly Hunt director of design, Debra Weninger moves on to the next level—and makes a serious splash By Kate Ancell | Photography by Jeremy Bustos

Three years ago, Debra Weninger, the revered director of design at style temple Holly Hunt, took a deep breath and decided—with equal parts terror and excitement—that it was time to go solo. “I was so lucky to be able to do everything I most hoped to do,” she says about her former ace gig at Holly Hunt. “We launched Christian Liaigre and started Studio H, the John Hutton line, all across America. It was an amazing experience, but… I had to find out what it would be like steering my own ship.” Turns out, first stop on the new course is pretty breathtaking. After spending a few years in the visual trenches as an interior architectural designer and “navigating the vision I had inside me,” Weninger’s work has landed in one of the most coveted showcases in the city, Kara Mann’s super luxe Hubbard showroom. The Indiana-bred designer’s new collection—case goods, seating and lighting—pays homage to her Midwestern roots and combines form and function with an organic, common-sense eco-sensibility that even the most hardened non-hippie will love. Take her Duneland lighting, for example: hand-carved wood pieces cast in bronze, featuring eco-chic LED lights. “I grew up in Duneland Beach, and I loved to play with the horsetails that washed up there,” says Weninger. “I wanted these lights to recall those shapes and aquatic elements.” This thoughtful attention to warmth, personality and detail runs through the collection. “I only use woods that are native to North America—not only is it more ecofriendly, but I think we respond to their familiarity,” she notes. “And many of my pieces are made from recycled aluminum and cast iron—natural materials that are also beautiful. I think it’s our job as designers to lead the way into responsible living.” Responsible? Check. Truly beautiful? Check-plus. From the circular Retour Mirror with its hand-cast bronze pattern over antique mirror glass, to the cushy Eighty-First Dining Chairs with their “funky tattoo” Holland and Sherry embroidered backs, Weninger’s pieces lure viewers to revel in the details while lounging comfortably in the whole. 68 |


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MATERIAL GIRL Furniture designer Debra Weninger in the Kara Mann Showroom.

INTERIOR MOTIVES Above, from left: Weninger’s Duneland Chandelier made with LED lights; the circular, hand-cast bronze Retour Mirror; the Lawton Cocktail table made from framecast exotic alloy with a hand patina finish and a faux goatskin top; the sleek-lined Benton Buffet, which mixes midcentury aesthetics and age-old materials like lacquer and hand-laid gold strands.

“From bronze work mimicking dune grass to textured panels like oak tree bark, inspiration drawn from nature made this collection a must-have for my showroom.” –Kara Mann

May cause your family room to develop abandonment issues.


Built in the heart of the city, for the heart of your home. L O C AT I O N S







Square One



Flor’s big-idea guy blasts a ho-hum carpet company out of the office and into the hands (and homes!) of top designers everywhere By Lisa Cregan | Photography by Anthony Tahlier If you’ve ever wondered why you’re as happy flipping through Flor’s catalogs as you are leafing through your favorite newsstand shelter mag, or why a quick visit to their website turns into hours of clicking around fantasizing, well, you can thank Chip DeGrace for that. The creative mastermind behind all things Flor, DeGrace is a renowned idea guy who, as he puts it, “likes to rethink things.” The biggest thing he rethought while working at modularcarpet giant Interface was why the ubiquitous office carpet tile hadn’t found its way into private homes. His bosses’

TILE STYLER Chip DeGrace inside the new Chicago Flor store.

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response? Go for it. And did he ever. Six years later Flor is a bona fide craze, and DeGrace, 49, who has a degree in fine arts and interior design, is the primary reason. “I’m a nontraditionalist by nature,” says the designer, who reports that he’s inspired by everything from Danish modern furniture designer Jens Risom and midcentury masters Charles and Ray Eames to the repurposed old time clock that he and his wife, Cynthia, use as an entry hall table. DeGrace says he looks for catalog moments with “soul.” High-profile Chicago designers like Julia Edelmann, Patrizio Fradiani and Michelle Fitzpatrick are a few of the soulful locals whose projects have made the cut. But the catalog is also chockablock with little moments DeGrace stumbles upon in the homes of stylish friends—things like sleek leather chairs surrounding a Deco table on a cobalt rug that looks more like a vintage Chanel jacket than a carpet, or a burnished old farm table set off by carpet tiles with all the graphic punch of a Josef Albers painting. DeGrace says he wants his customers to imagine the same “creative possibilities” he sees everywhere he looks. He’s particularly jazzed about FLOR’D! From top: The Feeling a just-introduced line called Find Groovy rug kit fills out this local modernist box; Fez tiles a Face. They’re carpet tiles with also photographed in a sleek images of mundane objects like Chicago home. electrical outlets and door handles (but with an anthropomorphic twist), photographed by DeGrace’s good friend, Chicago artist Francois Robert. “They look like faces,” laughs DeGrace. “I like to inject humor. I think that’s important in hard times like these.” He says he also thinks hard about color. “My colors are never wimpy. I err on the side of clarity, so my paisleys don’t look like other designers’ paisleys; my stripes don’t look like other stripes. They’re brighter.” Before spinning out of Mother Interface with his band of carpet revolutionaries, DeGrace made sure Flor’s products would hit every hot button his customers might conceivably want. Inexpensive? Check. Environmentally responsible? Check. Colorful, fun, easy to use? Check, check, check. No part of the customer experience was too granular to get his attention. Next time you place an order, take a close look at the candy-colored, DeGrace-designed adhesive dots used to connect the squares. Yes, they’re smiling at you.

The Art


D I M E N S I O N A L WA L L E F F E C T S O N S U R F A C E O R C A N VA S 101 North Swift Road | Addison, Illinois 60101 | 630-627-1011 |

Capital Gain! HOME FRONT

D.C. emerges as design-central with a new take on leading chic By Tiffany Jow


Don’t be fooled by Capitol Hill’s customary buttoned-up style. The city is morphing into a serious design destination where classic architecture meets cutting-edge furniture, and where a new breed of design minds is turning a traditionally staid aesthetic firmly on its side. A new constitution of totally cool décor? Call it a new day in D.C.

Suite Stays An influx of high-design hotels has invaded the cityscape, giving chintz-and-check standards a run for their money. Making the biggest splash is the Capitol Skyline Hotel (rooms from $99–$159, capitolskyline. com). Owned by the art-centric Rubell family and flush with groovy décor, the hotel is a converted Best Western that’s made a comeback as HQ for hipster art happenings. Built in 1962 by Morris Lapidus, it’s now furnished with pieces by Frank Gehry, Eero Saarinen, Greg Lynn and Philippe Starck. Downtown, the W Hotel (from $400, got a head-to-floorboard redo by L.A. designer Dianna Wong, who accentuated the building’s Beaux-Arts

architecture with red, black and d.c. lobbyist white hues. At its J&G Steakhouse, the donovan House hotel. Above right: headed by Michelin three-star chef luisa de los santos’ Jean-Georges, guests dine beneath wares at Muléh. soaring 20-foot ceilings and arched windows. And if you really want to test D.C.’s daring design waters, opt for the recently opened Tompson Hotel’s Donovan House (rooms from $139–$599, on Tomas Circle. Located just blocks away from up-and-coming Logan Circle, a ’hood full of newly renovated lofts and contempo art galleries, the boutique hotel was designed by NYCbased Studio Gaia. Futuristic-looking furniture and plush details (Sferra linens, Veuve-stocked minibars) make it a mod haven. continued...

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For D.C.’s best burgeoning design zone, head to the U Street Corridor, which boasts the top indie galleries and shops. Pick up the latest from Knoll, scribeStudio, Steven Anthony and David Edward at Vastu (vastudc. com), where founders Jason Claire and Eric Kole are regularly on hand to share their interiors expertise. Pop by Muléh (muleh. com) next door to check out owner Christopher Reiter’s carefully curated collection of furniture and fashion that celebrates clean lines at their best. From Ford-Brady lighting to Phillip Lim dresses, Muléh is a one-stop design shop. Home accessories and furniture at their most lighthearted rule at RCKNDY (, whether you’re looking for some colorful Alessi kitchen-counter candy or playfully elegant bedding by Blissliving Home. Pieces by Gus Modern, Blu Dot and Areaware round out the mod housewares. Similarly, Home Rule ( is the go-to spot for cool gifts. From the wacky (an alarm clock on wheels?) to the whimsical (stackable Lego cutlery!), this is the place to stock up on the unexpected.

Muléh photo by doug sanford

Design’s Big U-Turn

The Design CenTer at The MeRchAnDise MART

Congratulations to the 2009 ones To WATch award winners

Richard Abrahamson RJA Design

Each year the showrooms of the Design Center at The Merchandise Mart recognize three designers who have demonstrated creativity, originality and overall great design. Their unique ďŹ&#x201A;air has brought them to the forefront of the industry.

Michael Del Piero gooD Design

Jessica Jubelirer JessicA JubeliReR Design

Remember these rising stars when embarking on your next interior design project.


Mod Noshes Fueling up in the district merely means more chances to indulge in the city’s conceptual offerings. Check out these design-driven dining and nightlife destinations. Policy Street artist Andrew Funk covered this U Street staple in graffiti, and Peter Hapstak of local firm CORE (coredc. com) decked out its ceilings with chandeliers. Tis barlounge hybrid is where the hipsters hang. 1904 14th St. NW, 202.387.7654,

Blue Ridge Housed in a carefully restored rowhouse in Glover Park, this neighborhood eatery also partnered with CORE to channel a turn-of-the-century Shaker farmhouse. 2340 Wisconsin Ave. NW, 202.333.4004,

Founding Farmers Barnyard-chic meets industrial warehouse at this funky twostory post, where locally grown fare is the name of the game. 1924 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, 202.822.8783,

Josephine Inspired by 19th-century French opulence, this retro-chic lounge is charged with a larger-than-life sound system designed and installed by the Virginia-based BAHA Design Group ( 1008 Vermont Ave. NW, 202.347.8601,

L2 Hidden in Cady’s Alley, this members-only club overflows with excess via its sleek interior, created by hotshot developer Anthony Lanier of East Banc (eastbanc. com). 3315 Cady’s Alley NW, 202.965.2001, 74 |


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Culture Clubbing With a design-savvy administration in town, creative gurus are flocking to D.C. and making art happenings more public than ever. On Oct. 27, White House interiors man Michael Smith discusses the project during a talk at the Corcoran (, the famed gallery-cum-college of art and design that’s frequented by district native and alum Tim Gunn. Te biennial Solar Decathlon ( takes over the National Mall on Oct. 9–13 and 15–18, when 20 university teams compete to conceptualize, build and operate energy-efficient, solar-powered homes while the public watches. Meanwhile, the National Building Museum ( launches “House of Cars: Innovation and the Parking Garage” on Oct. 17, exemplifying its design-minded calendar of events. Year-round, D.C. has plenty of musts for the architectural buff. While continually showcasing avant-garde talent within their walls, contempo galleries like Conner Contemporary ( and Project 4 ( have gone green by renovating their interiors. Te breathtaking Harman Center for the Arts (, home to the Shakespeare Teatre Company, features an arresting glass façade. Back on the mall, the hip Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden ( shows off its iconic circular shape while the National Gallery ( gets a modern sculpture at its front this fall by Dendroid dude Roxy Paine.

yes votes Clockwise from top: A view from the inside of the Hirshhorn’s iconic circular exterior; conner contemporary artist Kenny Hunter’s 2009 installation, like Water on Water; virginia tech’s entry to the solar decathlon. solar decathlon photo by kaye evans-lutterodt

Bourbon Steak Te Rockwell Group designed this savvy space within Georgetown’s Four Seasons Hotel, a hotspot for people-watching and a hideout for visiting celebs. 2800 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, 202.342.0444,


NeW oN mArKet

2247 N. Burling

2244 N. Dayton

Gorgeous 4 story Greystone in Lincoln Park. Beautiful hdwd flrs thruout. This family friendly layout offers 6 bdrms, with 3 all on 1 level. Grand master ste w/big closets, spa bath w/ Jacuzzi, sep shwr & dual vanity. Lg gourmet eatin kitch w/ white cabs, chef’s grade appls opens to fam room. Sep. dining room. 2 lg outdoor areas with roof deck above 2-car gar. LL rec room w/ additional br. 6 BR/5.1 BA.

Three full levels of living in this spectacularly renovated extra wide single family on corner lot. Beautiful custom kit/great room with 48” Viking range, wine cooler, double Miele dishwashers. Huge mstr ste w/dual walk-in closets, marble bath w/separate spa tub and shower. Multiple skylights. All baths with Ann Saks tile & Waterworks fixtures. Large prof landscaped yard & 2-car garage. 5 BR/ 4.1 BA.



2110 N. Kenmore

827 W. Buckingham #3

Better than new 5,600 sq ft home with gorgeous limestone facade. Unbelievable finishes. Great room opens to two-tiered deck. Top floor penthouse with huge roof deck and outdoor fireplace. LL with “leather” tile, heated floors, huge family room, additional bedroom and mud room. Attached 2-car garage. 5 BR/5 .1 BA.

Fabulous 2 bed/2 bath x-large condo with all luxury finishes featuring: brazilian cherry floors, gourmet kitchen with Viking range, Subzero refrigerator and granite counters, marble baths, spa master bath with steam shower & whirlpool, crown mldg, oversized decks, surroundsound and plasma wiring! Great location! 2 BR/2 BA.



reNt to oWN

NeW oN mArKet

600 N. Kingsbury #1907

1839 N. Fremont

1550 N. State #803

1112 N. Dearborn #4

2026 N. Seminary

Top floor duplex penthouse w/ amazing views of the city. 3,200 sq ft of pure luxury with top of the line kitchen, great room & separate dining room. Custom built-ins and beautiful custom wet bar. Top floor master suite with enormous bath, steam shower, huge tub. Private roof deck with built-in grill. 4 deeded parking spaces in private garage for $125K . 3 BR/3.1 BA.

This Greystone home on a fabulous Lincoln Park block offers generous room sizes and light galore. Two story atrium & skylight create a dramatic living/dining room. The gourmet kitchen features all of the finest finishes & is open to the family room as well as the large yard. 2nd floor master suite w/built-ins, steam shower, spa tub & great closets. 2-car garage. 4 BR/3.1 BA.

Beautiful Gold Coast home in spectacular Benjamin Marshall building! Amazing views from every angle of this gem, featuring new windows, separate living & dining rooms, hardwood floors, wood burning fireplace, new master bath, and gracious room sizes. Large kitchen perfect for entertaining. Building offers exercise room, storage, 24 hr doorman. 2 BR/2 BA.

This is the highest level unit with French doors over looking Dearborn! 3,200 sq ft on one level with private elevator access and gracious space throughout. Classic detailing with crown moulding and tray ceilings. Cooks kitchen with eat-in island & fabulous appliances. 2-car attached garage included. Private roof top deck space. 3 BR/ 2.1 BA.

One of the original homes built on the James Morgan farm in the Sheffield Historic district of Lincoln Park in 1893, this fabulousresidenceoffersoriginaloldworld charm with today’s modern amenities. 6 gracious bedrms. Walnut paneled library. 37.5 ft wide lot w/ a grass yard, bluestone patio, & amazing landscaping. Roof top garage deck with grill, refrigerator, extensive landscaping & lighting. 6 BR/5.1 BA.






37.5’ Lot!

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Chicago - Evanston - Highland Park - 877-307-0762

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Cabin Fever!

Designer Jordana Joseph takes an airy lakeouse into the wow zone with A-list art, midcentury gems and plenty of rule-breaking ’tude By Lisa Cregan | Photography by Bob Coscarelli

If only all client meetings went like this: Blissfully floating on the lake on a warm summer afternoon, designer Jordana Joseph and her client, art gallery owner Monique Meloche, nailed down the entire color palette for Meloche’s lake-front weekend cottage. Blue for the sky, green for the dune grass and sandy tan for the beach. “Te house is so high up on the dunes that the farther out in the lake you go, the better you can see it,” says Meloche about the 1956 ranch in Miller Beach, Indiana, that she purchased with her husband, Evan Boris. “Jordana and I realized that from that angle it’s almost impossible to tell where house ends and nature begins.”

PATTERN-PERFECT Artist Ebony Patterson’s striking portrait scans the open living area. Justin Cooper’s sculpture from “Garden Hose and Log” series; Jens Risom armchairs upholstered in Larson’s “Primavera.” Above, from left: Designer Jordana Joseph with homeowner Monique Meloche in front of a painting by Mickalene Thomas.

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Meloche, 41, is no stranger to sudden inspiration. Eight years ago she founded the gloriously avant-garde Monique Meloche Gallery, a platform from which emerging artists such as Carrie Schneider, Carla Arocha and Rashid Johnson have leapt directly onto the world stage. And her husband of 10 years is a very busy Chicago real estate executive, so ordinarily they’re pretty self-sufficient in the style and architecture departments. But after they’d impulsively bought this quintessentially 20th-century, Mies-inflected ranch (they were tipped to its availability by a couple of Meloche’s artists), the pair realized their combined knowledge of this kind of modernism was pretty skimpy. Enter Jordana Joseph, a good friend whose expertise in midcentury brio runs deep. “Tey called me and said, ‘Will you help us?’” Joseph says. “It’s always nice to be told by cool, smart people that you might know something!” And she knows plenty. Joseph, 38, spent five years in Sotheby’s 20th-century furniture and decoration department before starting her own design firm, Jorje, in 2000. Although Joseph manages to slip some vintage modern into all of her projects “for a little soul,” as she puts it, she says she tries to avoid the standard “Eameschair-Noguchi-table” track some designers choose. Tat suited Meloche perfectly: “I’m the kind of person who wants the piece of clothing everyone else leaves on the rack,” she admits. It’s thus a house full of furnishings both intelligent and irreverent—nods to 20th-century masters with winks to Te Brady Bunch. In the living room, two armchairs by iconic furniture maestro Jens Risom share the limelight with a funky ’50s chaise and a groovy vintage Starburst coffee table from Baker. In the downstairs den two bucket-like Gaetano Pesce chairs sit cheek by jowl with a très retro round Flokati rug and an old driftwood table found at auction. It’s a mélange both arresting and humorous. Tose deft design moves set the stage for artwork with a similarly out-there vibe. A shocking Tony Fitzpatrick mixed media piece greets visitors at the front door, telling them at the get-go that this is no simple

Above, top: A vintage chair from Pegboard Modern is dressed in green textured velvet to play off the photomural’s mossy forest floor. Below: The view of the house from the beach. Opposite page: Family room karaoke is supervised by an image of Jeff Hanneman, lead guitarist for the heavy metal band Slayer; a painting by collaborative painters Robert Davis and Michael Langlois.

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beach shack. Tere’s a striking painting by the house’s former owner, artist Rodney Carswell, in the master bedroom and an enormous, haunting portrait by Robert Davis and Michael Langlois in the downstairs den. But Boris says if he had to single out the most personally moving piece, it’d be the striking painting by Mickalene Tomas, a Meloche-repped Chicago artist, which dominates the living room. “It’s based on a photo of the artist’s mother during her modeling career,” Boris says. “From around 3:45 in the afternoon when the deck starts to get full sun, the light hits the it 82 |


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and it sparkles. It vies with the lake for attention.” Although the art is inevitably the first thing to catch your eye here, Joseph says it was the steel table and chairs by midcentury genius Warren Platner that “established the rhythm.” She especially loves that the chairs still have their original upholstery. “A lot of life here revolves around that table,” notes Joseph. “Monique will cook for 50 without batting an eye.” Incurable entertainers, Meloche and Boris, whose workday home is in Ukrainian Village, pack this 2,600-square-foot, four-bedroom place most weekends

Above: A vintage Platner dining set jibes with the midcentury starburst ceiling fixture found at Ravenswood Antique Mart. The photograph in the buffet nook is by Laura Letinsky. Opposite page: In a corner of the living room, the clean lines of a sofa from Room & Board and a leather-topped Nelson side table offset an eerily wavering Joe Baldwin painting entitled Death House and a plastic gnome by artist Zöe Charlton.

with a grateful mix of family and friends. “It’s hard to get a reservation,” Joseph jokes. Repeat guests have tagged the bedrooms with various monikers and will call in advance to get first dibs on their favorite. Tere’s the “Mural Room” with one wall covered in a verdant woodland photo; the “Nelson Room,” featuring fabrics by that modernist superstar; and last but not least to its fans, “Te Round Room,” with its swinging-’70s circular bed and bed skirt with cheerleader pleats. “Why not?” laughs Meloche when asked about the Austin Powersreminiscent nest. Apparently man does not live

by impeccable taste alone. Ten there’s the group’s other secret shame: karaoke. “Most nights it’s set up in the downstairs den,” confesses Joseph sheepishly. “Monique is the karaoke queen.” Apparently Meloche (who says that Joseph has pulled off many a good set herself) is such a fan that she’s assembled a sorted spreadsheet of her favorite tunes. “And I’m big on karaoke conversions for shy types,” she adds ominously. “It’s 1950s Palm Springs-style entertaining, only updated,” laughs Boris. “It’s our own little slice of paradise. We call it the Indiana Riviera.”

It’s a house full of furnishings both intelligent and irreverent—nods to 20th-century masters with winks to The Brady Bunch. But it’s the Warren Platner steel dining table and chairs that “established the rhythm” for the entire project, says designer Jordana Joseph. Fall 2009


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Loft Core

A West Andersonville couple grabs interiors by the horns to turn a former woodworker’s shop into a shrine to out-of-the-box design By Tate Gunnerson | Photography by Tony Soluri

If a home’s heart is in the kitchen, then what do you call a woodworker’s loft with no functioning kitchen—just an industrial slop sink, a beat-up refrigerator and lots of sawdust? Seduced by its possibilities, an enterprising couple, new to both renovation and cohabitation, poured more than a little heart into finding out. Buying a fixer-upper, let alone a woodshop, wasn’t in the cards when Todd Hilt and Alvin dela Cruz decided to move in together three years ago. Te housing boom was at its height and their real estate agent, Alley Ballard, had no shortage of properties with kitchens to show them—shiny ones with sleek cabinets, granite countertops and fancy, stainless steel appliances. But Hilt and dela Cruz were not impressed. “I was pretty vocal about not liking new construction,” says Hilt, a project manager for Hyatt Hotels and Resorts. But he was

HEAD QUARTERS In the dining area, a faux resin stag head purchased at FourSided hangs above a midcentury modern buffet flanked by a pair of Philippe Starck Louis Ghost chairs.

also hesitant about tackling a rehab. What these rehab neophytes lacked in experience, they also lacked in free time. Ten a loft in Ballard’s own building hit the market. “I saw a lot of potential: open space, high ceilings and big windows,” says Ballard. “My recipe for possibility.” Selling a lifestyle is canny marketing but Ballard’s task was far more difficult: She had to help them see through the sawdust that hung in the air and to visualize, for example, how the dirty, rustic, square woodshop worktable could make a spectacular one-ofa-kind kitchen island. Turns out, it wasn’t that hard of a sell. Rather than daunting them, the loft’s virtually unlivable conditions convinced Hilt and dela Cruz they had nothing to lose. “Spaces like this don’t come along too often,” says dela Cruz. “No matter what we do to it, we can’t mess it up that much.” With that the couple embarked on an ambitious six-month renovation project, which included building a raised platform with a dividing wall to create two distinct rooms. Facing the kitchen and living areas, the family room’s black and white wallpapered accent wall makes a bold statement while

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concealing the couple’s bedroom. Te effect is not unlike a stage set, perhaps that of a renovation comedy. Cue the laugh track. Every renovation project has its moment of utter madness—usually so bad you can only laugh about it afterward. And in their case, it came while prepping the space to be painted, a job that couldn’t begin until the dust was gone, a job so large it required them to hose down the walls and ceilings with a power washer, an unenviable task that succeeded in clearing the dust but which

flooded the space, leaving a muddy mess. It’s nearly impossible to identify rock bottom until the recovery begins, so it’s only in hindsight that the couple declared the ensuing flood and dela Cruz’s near electrocution the low point. “Coming home to mud and water and no light and then getting shocked on top of it, I thought, ‘What am I doing here?’” says dela Cruz. “But after that, it really was smooth sailing.” Perhaps spending time in the finished space with its brilliant white walls, high

The gnomes, the Mexican wrestling mask, the sprinkling of kitsch, all work as “friendly middle fingers” of quirkiness, says owner Todd Hilt. 86 |


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Above: The owners kept some of the large-scale pieces from the woodworking shop, like this tool cubby. A single roll of Fork wallpaper by Tracy Kendall makes a big statement. Opposite page: In the dining area, two Ferruccio Laviani Icon Lamps illuminate a well-worn table left behind by the woodworker. The slim, leather Lina folding chairs are from DWR.

ceilings and, yes, gorgeous kitchen has given dela Cruz’s memories, even the bad ones, a nice patina, but the couple says combining Hilt’s love for patterns, texture and warm colors with dela Cruz’s preference for sleek, spare and white, proved to be easier than expected. For example, a midcentury modern Rosewood sling chair from Argentina winks at the couple’s colorful vintage pottery collection and coexists peacefully with a new sofa and coffee table, resulting in a living room that feels like it could have been designed by either of them. Indeed, Hilt and dela Cruz found common ground in their love of vintage, so they chose pieces such as a midcentury modern buffet with warm wood tones and clean lines, which appealed to both of them while unifying their respective belongings. Te couple’s winning 88 |


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formula repeats throughout the space: A faux stag head hangs prominently above the piece. Coupled with the nearby cowhide rug, it conveys an irony the couple enjoys. “It’s a friendly middle finger,” says Hilt of the high quirk quotient throughout the space. A Mexican Lucha Libre wrestling mask hangs above a desk in their corner office and a gnome sits mischievously beside an oversize built-in wood cabinet (another lucky hand-me-down from the woodworker). Even the Hillary Clinton poster hanging above the couple’s bed feels a little too ironic. “Te Hillary poster reminds me of an Eva Perón poster,” explains Hilt. “It’s making fun of icons, although I thought she was going to win when I bought it.” Indeed, much of the couple’s art pokes fun at icons, whether political, pop cultural or religious. A pair of pencil drawings

by their friend, artist Michael Murtaugh, parody old-time movie posters, and they don’t shy away from religious kitsch. “My mother comes in here and thinks we’re going to hell,” says Hilt. “She thinks we’re making fun of it.” Perhaps appropriately, it’s the loft’s new kitchen that showcases the ingredients that helped them merge their distinct styles—a mix of old and new, high and low. Ebony Ikea cabinets with clean lines echo the loft’s industrial architecture and work well with Moooi’s contemporary Random Light and the surface it illuminates. Te hulking square woodworker’s table is

now very clearly a spectacular kitchen island. Hilt says loft life takes some getting used to, but the benefits outweigh any problems. “If we’re both here at the same time, it’s a competition,” says Hilt about the lack of walls. “But it’s really nice to have a space that lends itself to entertaining.” “We have more impromptu gatherings,” adds dela Cruz. “Instead of going for drinks after dinner, why don’t we just gather around the island?” So the cliché rings true, at least in this case: Home really is where the heart is.

Above: Bold, floral, black and gray Kimura Wallpaper print by Romo adds pattern to the raised, TV-viewing area. Industrial pendant lights from CB2. Opposite page: In the living room, neutral colors are spruced up by the vintage Argentina rosewood slingback chair and a colorful, midcentury pottery collection. Inset: An oversize black Moooi Random Light plays the perfect contemporary counterpoint to the huge wood island and cool, high-back vintage stools.

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Heir Quality

A storied Lincoln Park walk-up goes 21st-century-fabulous with help from a Chicago fashion maven By Meghan McEwen | Photography by Tony Soluri


If sartorial mastermind Heiji Choy Black has learned an interiors lesson from running beloved Wicker Park shop Hejfina, it’s that there are no hard and fast rules to fashion or design. Case in point: Inside Black’s new historic family home—a stately brownstone in Lincoln Park once owned by the Buckingham family (yes, the Buckingham Fountain Buckingham family)—she traded the expected trad overtures for her own signature mash-up of poker-straight lines and edgy, modern style. Tere’s no doubt she’s influenced by the architecture and design names found on bookshelves at the shop or on coffee tables at home (from Charlotte Perriand to the Bouroullec brothers), but Black’s main inspiration comes from soaking up the art, culture and lifestyle of cities like Paris and London, which she visited on buying trips and which have helped cultivate a Euro-bohemian sensibility instead of a disciplinarian approach to style. “I find people focus too much on sticking with a theme,” she says. “You want to be in a home that’s well-lived—and that’s comfortable to live in.” As a result, Black’s family home has

strong contemporary influences without feeling like a sterile white box full of boldfacename design. She mixes it up with comfy sofas, organic shapes and a highly personal art collection. And then, of course, there’s the 100-plus years of history that come with the place. Black felt strongly about incorporating many of the existing details—like heavy wooden doors, plaster walls and intricate moldings—but the rest had to go. “It was a gorgeous space, but very much buttoned-up. It wasn’t inviting,” says Black, who identified the opportunity to start over from scratch as the home’s biggest selling point. “I’m very particular.” Modern upgrades came in the form of bathrooms (sea-green glass tile with walnut cabinetry) and a beautiful, all-white Carrera marble-clad kitchen. Black and her investor husband, Brian, instantly fell in love with the Lincoln Park walk-up, even though they never intended to surrender their four-year Wicker Park zip code. “We had just had our first child, the market had just started to go down, and we thought, ‘Tis is a great opportunity to find something we want to live in forever,’” says Black, who’s expecting the couple’s

ARTHOUSE-CHIC! In the living area, mismatched pillows and tons of art add a layer of interest to the white walls and heather gray wool sofa by Tacchini. Walnut and white marble coffee table by Union Studio.

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“I love seeing the passing of time through interiors. I think that gives it so much more life and meaning and that sense of comfort.” second child this fall. “I think in the U.S., we’re not privy enough to history. I love seeing the passing of time through interiors. I think that gives it so much more life and meaning and that sense of comfort. It’s the living of life. Te best interiors really show the person’s history—where they’ve gone and what they’ve lived through,” she says. Cue the antique wooden chair near the front door that Brian inherited from his grandfather (there’s a picture of him sitting in it when he was two years old) or the piece of art Black bought on her first buying trip to London during fashion week (“It’s like a timestamp”). Te contrast between old and new, pedigreed and personal—and how well it all works together—is best captured in the

angular staircase Black designed herself. A testament to her vision, the glass-and-steel showstopper, which was originally a colonialtype winding staircase that swooped out with beveling on the edges, had to be cut back for modern effect and now climbs up through the foyer like a geometric Rubik’s Snake (sans the rainbow colors). Even more than the focal point of the entryway (and almost an entire year in the making), it’s also a visual microcosm of the aesthetic story running through the home. “I wanted something very sculptural and dramatic,” she says. “I wanted something that was transparent, that in a way, gives the whole space more airiness, but at the same time makes a statement. Te blackness of it and

Above: The sleek glass staircase Black designed herself, along with the pencil and watercolor on Mylar by Noelle Allen, gives the entryway a simple, ethereal feel. Opposite page: In the dining room, Black uses statement pieces like the sculptural chairs by the Bouroullec brothers for Ligne Roset and an Elio Martinelli chandelier from Casati to set off the white marble-clad open kitchen to the side. Meaningful objects surround the B&B Italia dining table, including Czech glass from their wedding and a signed work from artist Tony Fitzpatrick.

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Clockwise from above: Black designed the steel outdoor staircase to be both minimal and childfriendly; in the master bedroom, the customdesigned bed is by Andrew Kephart from -ism and the photo is by Doug Fogelson; Black uses grown-up pieces of furniture (Saarinen’s Womb chair) and art (print above fireplace by Clamdiggin) that look just right in a little boy’s room but will grow with Cyrus.

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the minimalism of it is its own statement, but it lets the history of the home also live. It’s barely a statement.” In the hallway connecting the dining room to the living area, there’s another überfunctional design installation: a high-texture walnut liquor cabinet that doubles as a desk (“I don’t know what that says about me,” laughs Black) that she commissioned local woodworker Mode Design to build. “I said, ‘Wouldn’t it be cool to do a collage of wood?’ and he totally got it,” says Black, who also designed the modern, geometric fireplace that juts out into the living room. Decorated with what Black calls “transplant furniture,” the living room is full of the pieces from their previous condo—a gray wool sofa, an organic wood side table and an iconic Arco lamp. “Tey’re symbols of our first home together,” she says. Yet another story from their relationship is behind the two yellow, unnamed prints by New York-based William O’Brien, which hang above the mantel: It’s the first serious art they bought together as a married couple. “He has become a huge art star,” says Black. “It’s emblematic of our

promise—of the success of our marriage.” Black’s use of color reflects that same intense thoughtfulness. Don’t think for a minute she’s playing it palette-safe. Pops of vibrant color—their bold art collection, the accent pillows casually tossed about, a woven turquoise rug underfoot—stand out against the all-white walls. “In order for a home to feel livable… you have to have color,” says Black. “White doesn’t become comfortable unless you add color to the room.” Most importantly, she’s not afraid to have fun with the space—to make it a family home where children can run and play and make terrible messes. In the dining room, the long, formal table by B&B Italia was selected for its good, clean looks, yes, but also for being utterly indestructible. “It’s the most livedin room of the house,” she says. “And when you eat and live every single day on a table, even adults can mess it up.” With crayons or breakfast spread out across its smooth black surface, you can always turn the eye upward: a cool ’50s Italian pendant light puts high style out of reach of little hands, but within plain sight for adults.

New Heights

By Lisa Cregan, Thomas Connors, Amalie Drury, Meghan McEwen, Lisa Shames and Lisa Skolnik

Stop sweating the Spire! The sky is truly the limit for Chicago’s A-list architecture scene. From Renzo Piano’s buzzed-about new Modern Wing at the Art Institute to Jeanne Gang’s rippling Aqua, and get this—a meaner, greener Sears Tower—we’ve got the skyline everyone’s talking about!

WHITE OUT! Dirk Denison’s Terzo Piano.

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Chicago’s reigning starchitect, multiple AIA winner Dirk Denison, recently branched out from residential design to glamorizing the Chicago restaurant scene. His award-winning, underwater-like environment at Lincoln Park’s acclaimed L2O, and his latest work for the Modern Wing’s new eatery, Terzo Piano, both bear the Denison stamp: minimal, yes, but packed with emotion. “L2O is enclosed and comforting, Terzo is wide open, dynamically embracing the city,” says Denison, who wants L2O to feel like a steadfast “familiar friend” to regulars, whereas he designed Terzo with its custom panels that shift with the crowds to “literally change every day.”

terzo piano photo by andy barnes

The Restaurant Architect

OUTER SPACE Jimenez Lai’s Phalanstery Module installation explores architecture in zero-gravity.

THE CONCEPTUALIST For most architects, it’s all about bricks and mortar—or glass and steel. It’s hugging the ground, or scraping the sky. Ten there are those, like Peter Eisenman and Zaha Hadid, for whom architecture is as much—or more—a contest of imagination as it is a matter of construction. Count Jimenez Lai among the latter. An assistant professor at University of Illinois at Chicago and founder of the think tank Bureau Spectacular, Lai operates from a “what if” position, examining the built environment as ever-morphing space rather than permanent objects. At Extension Gallery for Architecture, he presented Point Clouds, a large, Tinker Toy-like construction whose connection points shifted when touched, altering the geometry of the piece and casting in space an echo of the movement that reshaped it. He’s used a comic-book format to comment on Frank Lloyd Wright’s unrealized Broadacre City and done a near-Dadaist turn in fashioning a dog carrier that is nothing more than a felt handle that wraps around Fido’s belly. Arf!

a new name–Willis tower (“big Willy”)–and those gut-wrenching glass observation boxes aren’t the only changes at chicago’s favorite scraper. new owners are giving the former sears a green makeover that will reduce the base building electricity use by up to 80 percent (equivalent to 150,000 barrels of oil every year). Devised by Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture, the plan tackles every energy-consuming aspect of the building, from the boilers to elevators.

CRAFT PICKS From left: Revolve light fixture and Weave chair.

Archi-Adventure Just when Chicagoan Brian Peters’ Design Lab Workshop—a hybrid furniture, art and architecture studio in the Chicago Arts District—was taking off and gaining recognition on the scene, Peters and his fiancée and artistic collaborator, Daphne Firos, have packed up and moved to Barcelona for a year. Peters will be attending the Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia, and he and Firos have created the Design Lab Workshop blog (designlabworkshop. to document their aesthetic adventures abroad. Meanwhile, hometown furniture aficionados are still scrambling for pieces like his sensuous Weave chair and Revolve light fi xture, both still available via custom order.

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Art For Architects Duchamp’s urinal, Pollock’s squiggles, Chris Burden nailed to the hood of a VW Beetle. As Andy Warhol said, “Art is whatever you can get away with.” And good artists get away with a lot. Or in some cases, seemingly little. Take Liam Gillick. Since making his mark in the early ‘90s, this British bad boy has had gallery-goers scratching their heads with his combinations of ponderous text (“Te commune itself

becomes a superstate”) and Plexiglass constructions that read like a cross between a Mondrian and an Eames Storage Unit. Working in the German Pavilion at this year’s Venice Biennale, the artist/curator/writer addressed the fascist-era structure by decking its doorway with strips of colored plastic and inserting a wooden, kitchen cabinetlike structure in the church-like space (along with a stuffed cat). Chicagoans will get a gander at his socio-politicoaesthetico strategies when the Museum of Contemporary Art presents Liam Gillick: Tree Perspectives and a Short Scenario (October 10-January 10).

The Krueck & Sexton Architectsdesigned Spertus Museum.

THE SPARE ExHIBITIONIST Above : Gillick’s Lapsed Production. Right : Liam Gillick. Trump Tower.

eye candy like buildings, beautiful food doesn’t require height. this architectural dish from avenues’ curtis duffy packs a lot of punch into its low-rise design. 98 |


Fall 2009

To eat, gently tap the crust with a spoon..

“Te Trump Tower is remarkably adroit, considering its bulk. It takes full advantage of its site on the river without overpowering it; its numerous setbacks acknowledge the site lines of adjacent buildings; and its sleek shimmering skin emphasizes curves and refracts light.” –Paul Florian, who’s firm is currently wrapping up the new Hyde Park Bank on Elston and Armitage.

liaM gillick. photo courtesy oF steFFen Jagenburg; lapsed reduction, 2008. collection MuseuM oF conteMporary art, chicago. giFt oF Mary and earle ludgin by eXchange. photo courtesy oF casey kaplan gallery, neW york; avenues’ dish by curtis duFFy

FAVORITE NEW ARCHITECTURE: “Spertus Museum. Te façade of this building was beautifully designed to be of our time and attract visitors into the museum, while being a thoughtful addition in scale and proportion to the Historic Michigan Boulevard District.” –Brad Lynch, whose firm is currently working on a few custom residential projects and designing a line of furniture.

LEGO MASTERPIECE The Lego version of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater.

NEW TOY ON THE BLOCK Who knows how many architects got the bug for building by playing with Legos as kids? Of course, that popular product wasn’t around when Frank Lloyd Wright was coming up, but his ambitious-for-her-son mother made sure he played with wooden blocks devised by Friedrich Froebel, the German pedagogue who pioneered the idea of kindergarten. Now, Lego, the 77-year-old Danish toy company, has teamed up with the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation and former Chicago architect Adam Reed Tucker to produce kits of Wright’s Fallingwater and Guggenheim Museum. Te Wright projects are the latest additions to the Lego Architecture line, which includes the Empire State Building, Seattle Space Needle, John Hancock Center and Willis Tower. And Tucker himself has been busy right here, building Lego versions of the Burj Dubai Tower in the United Arab Emirates and Shanghai’s Jin Mao Tower (both designed by the Chicago office of Skidmore, Owings, & Merrill), among other structures, for ART + Science = Architecture, on view at the Museum of Science and Industry through March 15, 2010).

“the use of patterns in garment design and construction is really not that far off from drafting and blueprints.” –dieter kirkwood

TOP DESIGN DieterBennet’s wrap-neck Fitted Coat made with Japanese melton wool.

ACTIVISM ARCHITECTURE Chicago architect Leslie Tomas has a lot on her mind besides buildings—namely human trafficking, forced labor, genocide, extreme sexual violence and high maternal mortality rates. “It’s easy for us to forget the struggles and horrors others endure,” she says. But Tomas is using traditional art and design tools to raise awareness of human rights and environmental abuses in an untraditional way. Arts Works Projects (AWP), a nonprofit she founded in 2007, elucidates the punishing, gut-wrenching crises that the mainstream media avoids with exhibitions that use visual tools such as gripping images shot by award-winning photojournalists. Two completed shows are circulating internationally (Congo/Women and Darfur Darfur); a new one, At What Cost: Human Trafficking/Forced Labor/Child Labor, opens in Chicago in early 2010.

THE ADVOCATE Leslie Thomas’ traveling, outdoor exhibit, At What Cost.

Most Architectural THREADS Stand-up panels, pieces that hang as if suspended in midair, cutouts that let daylight shine in… no, it’s not a building. It’s a dress—or a coat or a shirt—by Chicagobased clothing design team DieterBennet. “We use shape, structure and scale influenced by architecture to inform the way we envision clothing,” says Bennett Cousins, one-half of the pair of young Columbia College Chicago graduates. “Precision in both forms is needed to ensure all pieces and lines fit seamlessly together,” adds Dieter Kirkwood. Check out DieterBennet’s forward-thinking duds at Helen Yi in Bucktown.

Fall 2009


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Favorite Furniture By an Architect

WOOD WEAVER Bridgette Buckley with birch plywood cutouts for her Beehive Pendant.

“the building is crisply modern in its detailing while retaining a sensitivity to the context by not competing with the lake views and referencing marine components in the detailing of the building. it is a building that speaks softly but has a lot to say.” -gregory l. howe of searl lamaster howe architects on why the dusable harbor building by david Woodhouse architects is his favorite new project in the city. 100 |


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bridgette buckley by colleen durkin; dusable harbor by andy tinucci, david Woodhouse architec

After graduating from the Art Institute with a degree in architecture, Bridgette Buckley quite naturally went to work for a Chicago architecture firm. “Ten I had a moment,” she laughs of her abrupt resignation to pursue furniture design. “I realized the two disciplines are symbiotic.” She subsequently immersed herself in the work of Scandinavian design hero Alvar Aalto, who designed both furniture and buildings. “I even went to Helsinki to try to reconnect with his work,” says 36-yearold Buckley. She rose to the level of senior designer at Holly Hunt’s Studio H Line where she won Interior Design magazine’s Best of the Year awards for her Linden Lounge Chair and Siren Dining Chair. Now Buckley’s out on her own, having launched a firm under her own name earlier this year. She says her El Cielo Entry Table was inspired by Santiago Calatrava’s BCE Place galleria in Toronto: “It’s like the covered atrium he did there, where a soaring top is hoisted up on thin legs in a delicate way. It’s strong but graceful.”

“it’s sad more people don’t appreciate that a house can be artwork.” –todd eberle

Bolt of Good Design Te Loop got struck by lightening last spring when new-on-the-scene architect Jackie Koo’s design for Te Wit hotel was unveiled at the corner of State and Lake streets. A contemporary glass structure with a jagged neon yellow bolt running the length of its façade, the building was designed to serve as a gateway to the revitalized State Street corridor. “Our firm [Koo and Associates] is only four years old, so this project was incredibly significant for us,” says Koo. “How many young firms get to design a 27-story building in Chicago’s Loop as their first major commission? Te developer, Scott Greenberg, had the vision and guts to choose us. He fell in love with the design and that was it.” We’re pretty infatuated with it, too.

LIGHTENING UP STATE Above, from left : The Wit’s lightening bolt facade; the Roof lounge.

LIGHT MIGHT Louis I.Kahn’s Esherick house was photographed by Todd Eberle.

AUCTION BLOCK The late Julius Shulman shot Pierre Koenig’s 1958 Case Study House #21.

PREVIEW Columbia College’s media production center.

BUILDING WE’RE MOST ExCITED ABOUT! Local talent Jeanne Gang—whose Aqua tower has added a whole new profile to the skyline—unveils Columbia College’s media production center next year. Functioning like a silver screen, the transparent façade (punctuated with tinted glass that suggests a film production color chart) offers passersby a peek at the activity within. And because architecture, like film, is largely a visual experience, Gang has orchestrated the interior with an eye to the way filmmakers manipulate light, focus, and perspective to lead us through an illusory world.

WRIGHT ANGLES Who takes photos of the homes auctioned off by Wright Auction? Te great architectural photographer Julius Shulman, who died this past June at 98, knew that a modern house could be a work of art. Vanity Fair photographer at large, Todd Eberle, whose architectural images were featured in a 2006 solo show at the Art Institute, knows it too. “It’s sad more people don’t appreciate that a house can be artwork,” he laments. Given the task of auctioning Pierre Koenig’s 1958 Case Study House #21 three years ago, Richard Wright of Wright Auction immediately assigned Shulman to take the catalog shots for him. (“He worked for two days, like a fiend,” says Wright.) Last year it was Eberle’s turn as Wright hired him to photograph Louis Kahn’s 1961 Esherick House outside Philadelphia. It seems Wright knows auction catalogs can be works of art, too.

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PALM SPRINGS WHO? New York architectural ďŹ rm Taalman Koch selected Pioneertown for its offthe-grid prefab itHouses. The custom screen pattern enhances desert views while creating shade and privacy zones.

Desert Storm

Looking for the country’s cutting edge of new architecture? Super-cool design in an almost forgotten, artist-flocked hideaway generates some serious heat By AnnaMaria Stephens | Photography by Dan Chavkin and Art Gray

It’s Friday night, just after sundown. A pair of twosteppers are kicking up dust on the dance floor, not far from the small stage where a honky-tonk band is shaking it down. Te spitting image of Minnie Pearl in her Hee Haw heyday sashays around tables, taking drink orders, and the patrons—an improbable mix of bikers, hipsters, and leathery old locals—occasionally head out back, where the air has cooled off and the sky is spectacularly cluttered with stars. You couldn’t script a livelier scene at Pappy & Harriet’s, one of the main attractions in an itty-bitty place called Pioneertown, just 130 miles east of Los Angeles. Founded in the ’40s by screen hero Roy

Rogers as a sun-baked frontier backdrop for Westerns, Pioneertown is staging a Hollywood-sized comeback as a retreat for some of the country’s best musicians, artists and architecture aficionados. (Tink Marfa, Texas, with a cowboy theme.) Te otherworldly landscape of the surrounding Morongo Basin stands in stark contrast to Mane Street, the original movie-set façade a stone’s throw from Pappy & Harriet’s. Te Cisco Kid was filmed there, as was Annie Oakley, and bit-part actors once lived in houses hidden behind bullet-ridden saloons, stables, and hitching posts. Today, a mishmash cache of creative types hole continued... up in the unusual abodes.

NO A/C NEEDED! In the open-plan dining area of Pioneertownâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s itHouse, aluminum framing and concrete ďŹ&#x201A;oors are the new face of low-impact, high-desert chic. The itHouse is perched above the otherworldly Pipes Canyon Preserve.

DESERT PART DEUX Clockwise from top: The mantra at Rimrock Ranch; a newly refurbished cabin boasts desert kitsch; swapmeet chic at Rimrock Ranch; the Mohave Sands motel is the newest kid on the block.

Inn Style Rimrock Ranch’s smattering of historic red cabins and refurbished Airstreams make a fine place for shuteye after an evening at Pappy & Harriet’s. Guests especially dig the Cowboy Plunge, a large metal tub sun-heated for late-night soaks. Down the road in Joshua Tree, the new fiveroom Mojave Sands celebrates desert-modern minimalism. Sculptor Blake Simpson bought the rundown Oleander Hotel seven years ago, and while he kept the structure’s ’40s-era bones intact, everything else was custom-built. “It’s like an old Moroccan fort,” he says. “It’s all about the textures and colors: stone, smooth stucco and plaster, rusty steel, rough-sawn cedar doors.” Especially attractive are the earthy tiled bathrooms with hand-hewn hardware, floating walnut slab beds, and eye-catching metalwork throughout. Expect to see world-class art and photography in every room. A third option is Rattler Ranch, a charming cowpoke pair of midcentury bungalows just minutes from the Joshua Tree National Park entrance. Would-be Westerners can even corral their horses there for a night or two.

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“Pioneertown is such a real place,” ...continued says Jim Austin, who founded Redsand, a surf apparel company, and now lives most of the year in the desert. “Which is kind of funny, since it was built to be fake. It’s nine miles off the highway and 60 years back in time.” Follow the winding backcountry road from Pappy & Harriet’s and you’ll stumble upon Austin’s Rimrock Ranch. Te striking dwelling hangs on to its vintage roots—the rentable cabins that fringe the sprawling property date to the ’40s—while embracing a contemporary aesthetic of urban-industrial cool. When the original house burned to the slab foundation in a wildfire, Austin commissioned San Diego architect Lloyd Russell and builder Craig Ronholm. “It was the scariest project for me,” recalls Russell, who reinvented from the ground up. “Te thing I dreaded most was a totally flat site, and the desert is wide open, like a blank sheet of paper. What do you do?” Russell conquered his fears with a little local inspiration, adapting the shade structures used by area farmers to create a sun-deflecting steel canopy for Austin’s concrete house, which also features sliding glass walls that allow seamless indoor-outdoor

is rumored to be an ideal spot for songwriting. A 10-mile pace down the dirt road—and a seemingly infinite stretch from any trace of civilization—a pair of renowned architects have created another high-desert hit. Linda Taalman and Alan Koch, of the L.A.- and New York-based firm Taalman Koch, built their itHouse model home on five secluded acres in Pipes Canyon. Koch and Taalman chose the site after collaborating with Andrea Zittel, the acclaimed artist behind the High Desert Test Sites project, an ongoing series of experimental art sites that includes a location in Pioneertown, as well as one in nearby Joshua Tree. Te itHouse, an off-grid unit that’s won international kudos, takes on the challenges of the rugged landscape with sleek, graceful style. Te small glass prefab employs passive heating and cooling, cross ventilation, and photovoltaic panels, as well as artist-rendered shade screens for privacy and graphic impact. At least two Taalman Koch clients were impressed enough to commission Pioneertown-based itHouses of their own this year. “I think of the high desert as similar to what Malibu was in the ’40s,” explains Koch. “Malibu isn’t a frontier anymore, but it certainly used to be. For

“The high desert is similar to what Malibu was in the ’40s,” says NY architect Alan Koch. “For some, spending time in the desert seems like a challenging thing, because it’s desolate. That’s what Malibu used to be. It was an edge.” living. Te back of the structure, which faces tacky tract houses, is mostly windowless, preserving the illusion of peaceful solitude. “I always thought the desert was about fighting the elements,” says Russell, who has since changed his stance. “But if you’re just going to shut the doors and turn on the A/C, why bother living there at all?” Te architect, currently restoring a Spartan midcentury trailer on Austin’s property as his own weekend getaway, built the space around his client’s artistic lifestyle. A visible closet showcases Austin’s collection of vintage western shirts, and in the Hatch House—Rimrock’s attached private guest quarters— the main wall is lined with old letterpress posters from Nashville’s legendary Hatch Show Print. (Austin sources much of his décor from the local swap meet, a treasure trove of cowboy kitsch.) But the house’s most fetching feature is a deep porch off the kitchen, which doubles as a stage. Austin, who plays upright bass in the country-swing band Brawley (among five others, including ukuleledriven Cheap Leis), hosts frequent impromptu gigs with the many artists who bunker down at Rimrock post-Pappy & Harriet’s. Some even stick around for weeks on end. Whether it’s the sublime scenery or the lack of Internet and cell phone service, Rimrock

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some people, spending time in the desert seems like a challenging thing, because it’s desolate. But that’s what the coastline used to be. It was an edge. It was rough.” Te roughest elements in Pioneertown, other than the 100-plus-degree heat and fierce winds, are the craggy rocks and ocotillo trees. But that wasn’t always the case. In the ’70s, Pappy & Harriet’s was a rowdy biker bar called Cantina. A decade later, the eponymous Pappy and Harriet overhauled it with a country-western theme. Te bikers are still welcome so long as they don’t sport their club colors. Today, two hip New York expats run the joint, which boasts beat-up floorboards, adobe walls embedded with glass bottles, and a sign that reads “Hippies use side door.” Owners Linda Krantz and Robyn Celia updated the menu, but pretty much everything else stayed the same. Krantz stumbled upon the dive bar while working as an assistant producer on a film and jumped at the chance when she heard it was for sale. Considering that everyone from country stars Lucinda Williams and Jim Lauderdale (Grammy winners both) to the raunchy hipstress Peaches has played there, Krantz’s big-city tradeoff was well worth it. “Te vibe here is like nowhere else in the world,” she says.

STAGE LEFT From top: Rimrock Ranch turns into an open-air stage for insta-jam sessions; Pappy & Harriet’s Pioneertown Palace, draws musicians from afar; the town is like stepping into a time capsule of a Western movie set. Rawhide!

HANGAR ONE! Inspired by the regionâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s agricultural architecture, Rimrockâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s steel overhang keeps the house cool at the peak of summer, while locking in heat on chilly winter mornings.


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Hickman Design Associates Phone 312.642.7379 Web

Tracy Hickman aims to enrich the experience of coming home. As principal of Hickman Design Associates, Tracy works closely with clients to accommodate their lifestyles, not just furnish their homes. Her sophisticated, tailored interiors are driven by texture and comfort. From Chicago to South Carolina to the Cayman Islands, Hickman Design Associates offers classic yet diverse styles for the discerning client. 1. The mastery of both texture and color

2. Brilliantly understated, yet exquisitely

in this screened entry porch bring the

sophisticated, every room offers a

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this South Carolina island home.

Emily Mackie Norris

Luxurious spaces can include environmentally friendly features. Emily Mackie Norris and Inspired Interiors incorporate ‘green’ features into your space while maintaining a gorgeous and elegant interior. Few designers can create spaces that are stunning while comfortable, unique while within your budget and ‘green’ while decadent. It’s only a masterpiece if it represents your authentic personality and lifestyle. Dare to know perfection.

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with this modern Chicago home.

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Michelle’s Interiors Design Group Location 150 North Michigan Avenue, Suite 2800 Chicago, IL 60601 Phone 312.291.4466 Web

Would you like to come home and feel like you’re on vacation everyday? Clients of Interior Designer Michelle Rohrer Lauer value her for creating a unique environment that adapts to their ever-changing lifestyles. They appreciate their home surroundings as they enter into their own personal retreat each and every day. 1. Downtown “Weekend Retreat” condo

2. Custom-designed booth for entertaining

Susan Fredman Design Group Location 350 W. Erie Chicago, IL 60654 Phone 312.587.8150 Web

Environments that nurture the soul, comfort the body and stimulate the senses are the hallmarks of our award-winning designs. Approaching each project collaboratively, this design team provides exceptional service, breathtaking design and out-of-the-box solutions. At Home in the City is Susan Fredmanâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s retail store that provides indulgences in urban living and bridal registry. 1. A collaborative project approach

2. With a variety of budget constraints

between client and designer promotes

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home to a place where you can renew,

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designs for the needs of their clients.

Wiley Designs, LLC Location 416 Ravine Drive Highland Park, IL 60035 Phone 847.266.8991 Web

Sophisticated, functional spaces created with color, light and texture define our style. To this end, we work collaboratively with architects, clients and contractors to find the best, most balanced solution for each space. We focus on residential renovation including space planning, custom cabinetry, material finishes and furnishings. 1. Taking a cue from the architectural

2. A rich, timeless palette of brown, gray

history of the home, we reinterpreted

and blue in the selection of stone and

this dining room for today’s lifestyle.

custom cabinetry anchor this transitional master bath.

house party chicago | Phuture Primitive

Lukas Machnik and Julie Godfrey

Jillian Staats, with Megan and Mark Friend

Kerrie Havrenek and Jennifer Sweas

114 |


Fall 2009

the party: More than 200 people came out to see the “Phuture Primitive” installment, in which designers Jennifer Sweas and Lukas Machnik created an unbelievably chic futuristic interior space by reinterpreting the past with Primitive’s collection of furniture and artifacts. the VeNue: Sweas and Machnik used recycled steel plates for flooring, woven wiring for light fixtures, and real vines to transform 1,000 square feet of Primitive’s third floor –MM

Photos by tyler mallory

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...continued offering sage advice such as: “Never bring ugly furniture home, shop at Orange Skin.” the FOOD: Joy Yee Noodles, a client of Orange Skin, served guests Chinese takeout boxes filled with delicious treats like crab Rangoon and shrimp sui mai with sake and Chinese beer to wash it down –Courtney Cregan

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Kimmie and Neil Adriano

The pARTy: Top interior designers and industry partners gathered at Artemide to celebrate the kickoff to fall fundraiser Te Kitchen Walk in Harbor Country, Michigan. The FOOD: Guests were served an antipasti and Grey Goose and Martini & Rossi cocktails provided by Piccolo Sogno. The ChARITy: Proceeds benefited Designs for Dignity, an interior design firm that provides its services at no cost to area nonprofits serving marginalized or at-risk individuals –CC

Jim and AnnMarie Streibich

Erik Kolacz

photos by Ray ManRique photogRaphy

Leah Bolger and Wendy Cohen


LESLIE RHODES 773.213.5433

Designer collection of quality French provincial, Victorian and Baroque style furniture, restored antiques, and signed original artwork. Please visit our Main Factory and Showroom

Montalbano Furniture Since 1929, Chicago's Oldest and Finest Furniture Manufacturer, Restorer, Refinisher, Reupholsterer, and Importer. Family owned and operated for over three generations!

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1048 W. Fulton, Chicago "The Montalbano Gallery" Wednesday – Friday: 2:30 –7:00 pm Saturday: Noon – 5:00 pm or by appointment




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HOUSE PARTY CHICAGO | Te Promise of Tis Moment

Remember to be playful the bedroom.

Steven Haulenbeek, Jason Chernak, Bryan Metzdorf, Caroline Linder and Lisa Smith

THE PROMISE RING THE PaRTy: Bringing out Chicago’s design junkies during NeoCon, the opening of “Te Promise of Tis Moment” show explored everyday activities through design—like Greg Bethel’s ceramic Sigg caps and Bryan Metzdorf’s cardboard blanket. THE PLayERS: Curated by Te Mighty Bearcats and Te Object Design League, the show featured work by Craighton Berman, Sara Jacobson, Steven Haulenbeek, Materious and other local, independent designers –MM

Becky Midden and Michael Savona

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New York: 25 East 26th St. • 212.897.4460 Chicago: 154 West Hubbard St. • 312.467.2225



regional resource for knowledge sharing, advocacy, professional education and expansion of interior design markets. 222 Merchandise Mart Plaza, Ste. 13-500 312.467.1950 or


MusEuM of sCiEnCE And indusTRy

insPiREd inTERioRs This accomplished interior design firm is engaged in every aspect of the design process. From artful space creation and decoration to utilitarian plumbing and stone selections, no detail is overlooked. Gifted professionals coordinate every detail of your project, while you marvel at your new, 773.278.0419 or transformed interior space. 2734 W Argyle St # 3

ART nEw disCovERiEs Owner Laura Davis has an eye for scoping out unique finds. In addition to selling gifts, this Roscoe Village gallery represents a bevy of new artists and artisans who are either new to the Chicago market or already established. The art represented often embodies the spirit of the owner’s many travels. 2236 W. Roscoe St 773.360.8564 or

vALE CRAfT gALLERy Vale Craft Gallery features and sells contemporary American fine art and a variety of sculpture. The River North—based gallery also has colorful textiles, handcrafted furniture, glass objects and ceramics. Owner Peter Vale’s knack for showing eclectic, affordable collections from local and national artists is also a highlight. 230 W. Superior St 312.337.3525 or

CULTURAL INSTITUTIONS AMERiCAn insTiTuTE of ARChiTECTs ChiCAgo AIA Chicago is the second largest chapter in the country, representing the professional interests of architects and allied members who adhere to a code of ethics and professional conduct that assures the client of dedication to the highest standards in professional practice. 35 E. Wacker Dr., Ste. 250 312.670.7770 or

AMERiCAn soCiETy of inTERioR dEsignERs A community of people driven by a common love for design and belief that interior design is a powerful, multi-faceted profession that can positively change lives. Through education, advocacy, community building and outreach, the Society strives to advance the interior design profession. 222 Merchandise Mart Plz., Ste. 1647 312.467.5080 or

AMERiCAn soCiETy of inTERioR dEsignERs (Asid/dC) ASID is the leading organization representing the interests of professional interior designers. They provide knowledge and information, education and training, advocacy, support for business, recognition and leadership opportunities to more than 40,000 members in a network of 48 chapters in the United States and Canada. 608 Massachusetts Avenue, NE 202.546.3480

diffA AwARds This not-for-profit fundraising and grant making foundation is devoted to preventative education and outreach for those living with HIV/AIDS in the city. Founded in 1984, DIFFA has given more than $38 million to countless community-based organizations. Founders include many professionals from the fashion and interior design & architecture world. 222 Merchandise Mart Plaza, Ste. 939 312.644.6412 or

inTERnATionAL inTERioR dEsign AssoCiATion A networking and educational association committed to enhancing quality of life through professional excellence. The Illinois IIDA chapter is a


This museum is housed in the only remaining building from the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition and is the largest science center in the western hemisphere. The museum is featuring “Smart Home: Green + Wired,” a guided tour of a threestory, eco-friendly home filled with green furnishings, products and technologies. 57th St. and Lake Shore Dr. 773.684.1414 or

DESIGN CENTERS dREAMhoME To celebrate its 5th anniversary, DreamHome will now have an extended stay from now until December 18th at the Merchandise Mart. DreamHome gathers the city’s leading interior designers and the immeasurable resources of the Design Center showrooms to create an inspiring show house. It’s the ultimate design experience. 222 Merchandise Mart, North Lobby 800.677.6278 or

MERChAndisE MART 4.2 million gross square feet of space dedicated to retail shops, luxury home boutiques, furnishings showrooms, and a host of community events. As the world’s largest wholesale design center, The Merchandise Mart is synonymous with high design and luxury goods. 222 Merchandise Mart Plz. 312.527.4141 or

MMPi (LuxE hoME) This historical building has been a Chicago landmark for decades. It’s the world’s largest commercial building and wholesale design center. Both shoppers and design professionals can browse luxury kitchen and bath products; attend numerous trade shows and more. The Mart also has several dining options for those seeking a break from browsing. 222 Merchandise Mart Plaza 800.677.6278 or

DESIGNERS bEdRooMs by bRynnE Bedrooms by Brynne imagines and fuses the best version of who you are into your bedroom. Services include anything from customized bedding, furniture selection and lighting design to suit any mood, to full bedroom renovations. Brynne will design your bedroom interior for restful sleep, repose and a place to be playful. 773.960.8619 or

dCA sTudio A division of Dale Carol Anderson, Ltd., DCA Studio provides a range of accessible and affordable interior design options for today’s young sophisticate. Headed by Erika Farkas, the studio offers fresh design and a wide range of services. DCA Studio’s unique new approach will have the support of Dale Anderson’s reputation, experience and veteran staff. 2030 N. Magnolia 773.348.5200 or

dEsign REd This Chicago based decorative painting company recently opened a showroom in the West Loop displaying a full range of finishes from custom color washes and striaes, to sprayed metallics. DesignRed’s forte of specialized finishes include faux bois, gilding, and églomisé, in addition to custom handpainted designs. 114 N. Aberdeen 312.841.0100 or

hiCKMAn dEsign AssoCiATEs As principal, Tracy Hickman works closely with clients to accommodate lifestyles. Her sophisticated, tailored interiors are driven by texture and comfort. From Chicago to South Carolina to the Caymans, Hickman’s singular, detailed vision has left beauty in its wake. 3105 N. Wolcott 312.642.7379 or


abouttown Florenese

jonatas fante and lukas machnik of florense

the stylish crowd mingles inside the florense showroom

loran nordgren and kristina saric

Movers and shakers from the interior design world celebrated NeoCon with a party hosted by Jonatas Fante and Lucas Machnik of Florense. The fashionable crowd filled the chic showroom to celebrate the worldwide interior design conference held each year at the Merchandise Mart, as well as Florense’s exciting new 2009/2010 collection. Guests sipped cocktails by VeeV and sampled bites by Cork Catering while mingling amongst Florense’s beautiful furnishings. The partygoers walked away with an eco-friendly goodie bag and then headed to Y Bar for an exclusive after party.

aÇai sprit veev served custom cocktails for the event

FGI – tony Duquette: InspIratIons & achIevements

author hutton wilkinson signed copies of his book caption should go here

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craig thompson and judy niedermaier

caption should go heresong lisa ackerman and melissa

Fashion Group International, Baker Furniture and CS Magazine hosted a night honoring interior design visionary Tony Duquette with author Hutton Wilkinson’s best-selling book, Tony Duquette: Inspirations & Achievements. Partygoers and design enthusiasts headed to the Baker showroom to meet Wilkinson and discuss Duquette’s fascinating career, including his unprecedented exhibition at the Louvre in 1951. Wilkinson was on hand to sign copies of the book for the attendees.

jEssiCA MARgoT dEsign Whether it’s a first-time design client or a seasoned vet, Jessica Margot works closely with clients from inception to completion, selecting furniture, fabric, color schemes and more. Her international experience in architecture and design is invaluable in realizing her clients’ visions. 116 W. Illinois St., 5th Fl. E. 312.492.8777 or

KARA MAnn dEsign With a focus on high-end residential spaces, KMD approaches every project as a creative collaboration between design team and client, creating spaces with personality and sophistication. From Lake Shore Drive penthouse to Mexican beach house, KMD produces warm, layered interiors. 119 W. Hubbard St., 5th Fl. 312.893.7550 or

LAKEsidE inTERioRs The quaint downtown Wilmette boutique offers a stylish mix of eclectic home furnishings and accessories. Full-service interior design is also available, as well as a host of specialized services, including picture hanging, 847.512.5045 or organizing, home staging and more. 1111 Central Ave.

LAwREnCE boEdER inTERioR dEsign Boeder and his talented design team create gracious, elegant, upscale and very comfortable interiors for high-end residences and executive offices. Rich fabrics, jewel-toned color palettes and one-of-a-kind artwork and antiques characterize his style, while his clients’ individuality always shines through. 2241 N. Burling St. 312.613.6640 or

M. gRACE dEsigns, inC Their team is comprised of project management professionals, architectural designer and design assistants. Accomplished career histories across a broad spectrum of projects from large-scale and small; hospitality to urban mixed-use; corporate to residential. They view sustainability from a broader perspective as an integral part of the design process. 222 The Merchandise Mart Plaza, P.O. BOX 3412 312.842.0800 or

MARiLyn AKins inTERioRs Marilyn Akins’ interior design aesthetic is an exercise in sensual opulence. Part old-world tradition, part refined feminine luxury, her romantic sensibilities are evident in elegant, four-poster beds, richly patterned wallpapers, large floral-print rugs and lavish window treatments. 3824 York Rd., Ste. 2B 630.325.3355 or

MATTER & oRdER Matter and Order’s focus is to unite beauty and functionality to create interior design solutions as unique as their clients. This firm specializes in everything from concept development, to furniture and material selections, to project management. Fresh, forward-thinking design is M&O’s M.O. 701 S. Wells, Suite 1606 312.330.5025 or

MiChAEL dEL PiERo good dEsign Michael Del Piero’s diverse aesthetic is complemented her meticulous attention to detail and her strong belief in communicative designer-client relationships. In addition to design services, Del Piero offers furniture, antiques, home accessories, textiles and more in her on-site boutique. 1914 N. Damen Ave. 773.772.3000 or

MiChELLE’s inTERioRs A full service interior design group from new construction and renovations, to space planning and consultations, superb project management and exquisite window treatments and custom furniture designs. Michelle’s Interiors Design Group specializes in residential design, creating a unique and timeless space for each client. Simply.Fabulous.Design. 150 N Michigan Ave., Suite 2800 312.291.4466 or

shERRy KoPPEL dEsign Sherry Koppel’s background in the fine arts coupled with her world travels has given her an understanding of color and texture and a creative intuition


for beautiful and functional interiors. 210 W. Chicago Ave. 312.664.5056 or

sPACE dEsign PLAnning Leslie Newman Rhodes’ 35 years of renovation experience helps her to identify and implement her clients’ visions. As both an artist and gallery owner, she serves her clients from the consultation process to the furniture arrangement and floor plan. 312.642.2031 or

sTACEy CohEn inTERioRs Stacey Cohen Interiors specializes in locating off-the-beaten-path showrooms as well as art, antiques and other furnishings both unexpected and modern. This commercial and residential design firm is also on its way toward becoming LEED a certified business. 360 W. Illinois 312.480.0989 or

sTudio f Designer, architect and Italian transplant, Patrizio Fradiani brings his modern design sensibility to Chicago. Full of surprise elements, his range of projects includes old Victorian gut-jobs, sleek penthouses, a Tuscan villa and the first boutique hotel in Champaign, Illinois. 4201 N. Ravenswood Ave., Ste. 103A 773.880.0450 or

sTudio g inTERioRs Tracy and Jim Grosspietsch head this dynamic residential design consultancy firm. Services encompass everything from window treatments, art selection, and functional space planning to lighting plans, kitchen and bath design, and interior and exterior architectural design. Five Chicagoland locations. 1156 Berkshire Ln. 847.550.8580 or

susAn fREdMAn dEsign gRouP Designer Susan Fredman and her team of design professionals count client individuality among their biggest inspirations. Maintaining a sense of luxury while working with many different aesthetics, their interior design services can include everything from space planning and extensive remodeling to selecting accessories. 350 W. Erie St., 1st Fl. 312.587.8150 or

Tzs dEsign Headed by Tom Spanier, TZS Design provides each client with inspiring interior spaces accompanied by unparalleled attention to detail. With nearly a decade of experience Tom has completed a broad range of projects. Listening to the client is of utmost importance. Each solution reflects the client’s personal taste and style. 630 N. Franklin St 773.983.1880 or

wiLEy dEsigns LLC At Wiley Designs, interior design solutions reflect the client’s need and interests while creating spaces that are sophisticated, functional and balanced. The firm focuses on residential renovation including space planning, custom cabinetry, material finishes and furnishings. They are also happy to direct clients to sustainable options. 416 Ravine Dr 847.266.8991 or

DOORS MARvin dEsign gALLERy by EsTATEs windows, LTd. With a specific focus on windows and doors, Marvin Design Gallery by Estates Windows, Ltd., is a premier supplier in Chicago. They sell a vast selection of wood, fiberglass and steel entry doors in addition to Velux skylights. They will also assist you in selecting the perfect windows and doors for your next project. 930 North Shore Drive 847.615.1003 or

sLiding dooR CoMPAny With the Sliding Door Company options seem endless. Choose from a variety of glass types, finishes and much more. Their vision is a complete package designed to work with your home, whether you’re seeking a major interior overhaul or a simple upgrade. 221 W. Ohio St. 312.494.9494 or

Erika Farkas for


a division of

cassona 5241 North Clark Street Chicago, Illinois 60640 t. 773.506.7882

2030 North Magnolia Avenue Chicago, Illinois 60614 773-348-5200

FABRIC, LINEN, BEDDING unison Unison’s collection of printed bedding, blankets, throw pillows and table linens mix organic and graphic inspired motifs for a modern look. Referred to as “minimal but with substance,” the collection strives to be warm and attainable while maintaining minimal, modern qualities through the use of unique color and quality fabrics. 2000 W Fulton St 877.492.7960 or

FURNITURE AKbiK gALLERy AKBIK Gallery prides itself of having unusual antique, new and custom ordered hand-inlay furniture with mother of pearl. The beauty and the quality of the pieces they carry are beyond the norm. Their items add a touch of paradise to your home and interior. 2644 Green Bay Rd 847.328.7777 or

ARChiTECTuRAL ARTifACTs Owner Stuart Grannen travels to Europe, handpicking architectural artifacts that preserve history and enhance homes. Explore the expansive selection of more than 2,000 chandeliers, unique garden accessories, stone statues, ornate doors, stained glass and other one-of-a-kind treasures in this 80,000-square-foot space. 4325 N. Ravenswood Ave. 773.348.0622 or

ARTisTiCA Artistica specializes in creating exceptional furnishings that utilize old-world techniques to achieve superior quality construction. Exotic woods, elegant metals and a gamut of other global materials lend sophisticated twist on everything from bars and barstools to bedrooms and other home accents. 900 Green Bay Rd or

ARTwARE EdiTions Owners Rebecca Kong and Jon Tomlinson offer functional objects and furniture designed by artists. A large selection of everyday furnishings is coupled with each artist’s larger vision, resulting in truly unique, visually stunning work. 327 W. 11th St. 212.463.7490 or

bAKER For more than a century, Baker has been the hallmark of design excellence and uncompromising quality. Old-world craftsmanship, attention to detail and custom-selected materials are combined to create furniture with a classic sensibility in form, finish and function. Endless upholstery options and complimentary in-home design consultant services are available. 825 W. Chicago Ave. (Showroom in Merchandise Mart) 312.733.0353 or

boConCEPT (ChiCAgo)

CAsTE Co-owner, Ty Best, is solely responsible for the design and production of all of the offerings at Caste. The collection is comprised of one of a kind furniture, art and accessories. While the aesthetic is modern, simplicity merges with complex layers of detail, resulting in unique items. 521 N Halsted 312.432.0717 or

CLiff sPEnCER Traditional craftsmanship combined with supreme skill make Cliff Spencer’s custom cabinetry and furniture stand out. Featuring both modern and traditional designs, Spencer has experience working with traditional and non-traditional species of wood. Website offers good assortment of samples. 13435 Beach Ave. 310.823.0112 or

CREsT fuRniTuRE For over 15 years this family owned company has devoted itself to providing name brand items for less. Their newest location in Arlington Heights features brands like Flexsteel, Rowe and Broyhill. Specialty items also include Sealy mattresses and Howard Miller clocks. See website for locations in Crestwood and LaGrange. 1141 E. Rand Road 847.797.9906 or

dECoR8 This at home decorating service specializes in custom draperies and other window treatments, customized furniture and re-upholstery as well as select accessories. Their extensive background in the decorative fabric industry spans 3 decades. They also bring their samples to your design environment to ensure that selections are made accordingly. 847.855.7480 or

dEsign sTudio Design Studio offers a huge selection of European and domestic furnishings for the home and office. Characterized by clean lines and monochromatic color schemes the look is one of purist modernism. 40,000 square feet of showroom space in two locations. Additional location in Northbrook IL. 225 W. Hubbard St. 312.527.5272 or

EuRoPEAn fuRniTuRE wAREhousE A family business that has succeeded for over three generations, outfitting dining and living rooms as well as offering a broad selection of office furniture and outdoor pieces to decorate the entire home. Featuring modern and contemporary European styles. 2145 W. Grand Ave. 800.243.1955 or

EvAn LEwis As a sculptor and furniture maker, Evan’s showroom sits next to his studio, where he and his team create one-of-a-kind work. His handmade studio furniture is totally unique, and the use of burnished metals give his pieces a contemporary look. 3368 N. Elston Ave. 773.539.0402 or


This international design firm based in Denmark, produces modern design for urban-minded shoppers. They also offer customized, coordinated and affordable options for furniture and home accessories. 1901 N Clybourn Ave 773.388.2900 or

Flexform is one of the most exciting and progressive furniture manufacturers in Italy, with an international reputation for modern design with classic foundations. The furniture range includes armchairs, sofas, tables, chairs and occasional pieces. 445 N. Franklin St. 312.379.7900 or

CARson PiRiE sCoTT fuRniTuRE gALLERy


Carson Pirie Scott Furniture Galleries carry an array of beautiful home furnishings from luxury designers including Century®, Natuzzi and Better Homes & Gardens®. Furniture, bedding, area rugs and home accessories can be found at six locations in the Chicago area. A complimentary interior design service is also available at all Furniture Galleries. See website for various locations

Committed to producing high-quality products with preservation of the environment and quality of life in mind. One of the largest furniture companies in the world, offering products for kitchens, baths, bedrooms, offices, dining 312.640.0066 or rooms, home theatres and more. 300 W. Ontario St.

gEoRgE sMiTh CAssonA Cosmopolitan, vibrant and serene, this unique store carries a huge selection of furniture, home accessories, lighting, rugs and wall art for every room in the home. Contemporary pieces sourced from all over the world. 5241 N. Clark St. 773.506.7882 or


George Smith is the manufacturer and purveyor of handmade furniture, featuring seating and fabrics of the highest quality in both design and craftsmanship. Multiple locations across the country, but Chicago location is open to trade only. 222 Merchandise Mart Plz., Ste. 1879A 312.464.0242 or

Because We CareTM ThE goLdEn TRiAngLE This 23,000-square-foot gallery specializes in antiques and home furnishings from China, Southeast Asia and more recently, Hungary and France. A line of modern furniture made from ancient and reclaimed woods has also been added and a spectrum of furniture services are available. 330 N. Clark St. 312.755.1266 or

hAuTE Living Owners Jeffery Smith and Tatjana Ozegovic have created a place to display the exquisite furniture they ďŹ nd from around the world not readily available in the United States. Theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re also the exclusive Chicago retailer for Fendi Casa, Vladimir Kagan, and Piet Boon. 222 W. Kinzie St. 312.329.9000 or

You spend a lot of time, money and energy selecting the perfect floor coverings, the best carpets and the most exquisite upholstery and drapery for your home. Why trust cleaning them to just any vacuum? Trust Miele. With its superior performance and durability, Miele vacuums are thorough and powerful, yet gentle enough to clean your delicate home furnishings. Treat yourself and the things you love to Mieleâ&#x20AC;Ś Because We CareTM.

hoLLy hunT With showrooms across the United States, design entrepreneur Holly Hunt produces a large collection of furniture, textiles, rugs, lighting and outdoor furniture. The company designs, manufactures and distributes classic, modern and transitional furnishings. 222 Merchandise Mart Plz., Ste. 1728/1844 312.661.1900 or

hoME ELEMEnT With a mix of contemporary chairs, tables, bedroom suites and accessories, Home Element features pieces from Natuzzi, Calligaris, Jesse, Bontempi and more. Also featuring custom ďŹ&#x201A;oral arrangements, wall art and vases to complement antique and contemporary furniture. 600 N. Michigan Ave., 3rd Fl. 312.787.3358 or

i.d. I.D. features modern furnishings in ďŹ ne European and American designs. The spare gallery showcases original glass, lighting, crockery, wall coverings, and furniture in addition to offering a selection of designer eyewear and personal accessories. 3337 N. Halsted St. 773.755.4343 or

j RobERTs AnTiquEs This 25,000 square-foot Parisian gallery specializes in ďŹ ne European 17th - 21st century furniture and objects dâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;art. Their 2nd ďŹ&#x201A;oor features hundreds of items with savings of at least 50 percent off. Sip a glass of wine and enjoy the atmosphere as you browse the collection. 149 W. Kinzie (1/2 block East of Merchandise Mart) 312.222.0167 or

jARdin dE viLLE Family-owned and operated for over 50 years, Jardin de Ville is headquartered in Quebec with satellite showrooms in Estero, Florida and Chicagoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Merchandise Mart. Specializing in high-end outdoor furnishings, they distribute Danish, French, Belgian and German lines for North America, as well as producing exclusive in-house designs. 222 Merchandise Mart Plz., Ste. 1553 312.755.1414 or

LignE RosET Headquartered in France, Ligne Roset is an historic family-run business offering state-of-the-art contemporary furniture by designers such as Didier Gomez, Peter Maly and Pascal Mourgue. Find modernist dining tables, armchairs, sofa tables, cabinetry, lighting and textiles. 440 N. Wells St. 312.222.9300 or

LuMinAiRE Specializing in modern furniture and accessories from the worldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s most renowned designers, Luminaireâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s philosophy is to maintain a devout focus on design and quality. Many of the lines offered are exclusive. 301 W. Superior St. 312.664.9582 or

MACyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s A 150-year-old American shopping institution, Macyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s has pioneered many of the industryâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s ďŹ rsts. Offering a broad selection of items for the bed, bath and kitchen, tabletop accessories, home dĂŠcor, furniture and more. 111 N. State St. 312.781.1000 or


2646 N. Lincoln Ave. Chicago, IL â&#x153;&#x2020;773.348.4500 Mon.-Fri., 9am-6pm Sat., 9am-5pm Sun., 12pm-4pm

MAxALTo Maxalto is a B&B Italia Brand. Opened in Chicago in 2008 as the very first stand alone Maxalto store in the United States (the other in Paris) Maxalto is modern Italian furniture revisiting classic themes. It is designed and coordinated by Antonio Citterio. 309 W. Superior St. 312.664.6190 or

sAn juAn vEnTuREssAn This exclusive showroom in Chicago’s West Loop is like stepping into a chic, upscale Bali hotel combining the aura of reclaimed woods with high design. Kandis Wrigley’s FSC Certified company imports their exquisite handcrafted flooring, slabs, custom furniture, sculpture and accessories from Indonesia. 664 W. Hubbard St 312.612.1054 or

MAxinE snidER inC. Designer Maxine Snider blends elegant, refined style with a modern sensibility to produce her eponymous furniture line. Her growing collection includes beds, seating, storage, and tables, and custom work is available. Showroom at Merchandise Mart. 116 W. Illinois St., Ste. 7E 312.527.4170 or

voguE inTERioRs An eccentric collection of avant-garde European furniture design for living rooms, bedrooms, dining and bars, as well as accessories and entertainment centers. Ergonomic designs, bold colors, innovative design and modern comfort come together to striking effect. 201 E. Kensington Rd. 847.259.3300 or

MobiLi MöbEL Only the finest contemporary furniture and home accessories - from 40 different lines around the globe - are presented here. With a focus on the European modernist school, expect to find sleek pieces that combine beauty with function. 549 N. Wells St. 312.329.9669 or

ModLifE inC Modlife specializes in 20th century vintage modern home furnishings, including furniture, art, lighting and more. Their Lakeview showroom features the finest in original American and Danish Modern 1940s to 1970s furniture as well as Hollywood Regency pieces that have been reupholstered and reinvented to fit aesthetically into contemporary living. 3061 N Lincoln Ave., 773.868.0844 or

niEdERMAiER With contributing designers such as Nate Berkus, Vicente Wolf and Mark Demsky, Niedermaier has evolved into a design powerhouse. Offering the utmost professional service to clients, who choose from a stellar collection of modern furniture, fine art and the debut of Theo fabrics to the marketplace. 222 Merchandise Mart Plz., Ste. 1742 312.467.7008 or

PAgodA REd

wEsTwATER PATTERson Westwater Patterson, located inside the Merchandise Mart, offers a high-end selection of furniture for designers with a wide realm of tastes. Choose from Cache’s antique reproductions or try classic, collectible furniture by Ironies. 222 Merchandise Mart Plz., Ste. 1806 312.644.8890 or

GIFTS AND ACCESSORIES gRAsshoPPER510 From home decor for the kitchen and bath, to jewelry and stationery, Grasshopper 510 is filled with eco-friendly buys that you’ll feel good about. Whether it’s an organic, recycled, repurposed, vintage, sustainable or greenmanufactured item you need, you’ll surely find it here. Check out their online store. 1944 N. Damen Avenue 773.292.0510 or


Exceptionally well-priced Asian furnishings pack this open loft space including Chinese deco chairs, Nepalese rugs, antique lanterns and a rare collection of 20th-century Chinese advertising posters. Offering customers the rarest and most unusual Chinese antique furniture and artifacts. 1714 N. Damen Ave. 773.235.1188 or

Ann Sacks offers a myriad assortment of all different types of tile, stone and mosaics, allowing customers the opportunity to let their imaginations run wild. Projects are enhanced by Ann Sacks’ fine selection of plumbing 312.923.0919 or and lighting. 222 Merchandise Mart Plz., Ste. 100B


buiLdER’s CAbinET suPPLy

Pauline Grace is a to-the-trade contemporary furniture showroom in Chicago representing craftsmen and manufacturers from around the world. In their studio you can discover innovative, exquisitely crafted wood furniture, sleek contemporary upholstery, primitive, exotic materials as well as creative and sophisticated Italian design. 1414 N. Kingsbury St. 312.280.9880 or

For over two decades Builders Cabinet Supply has crafted top-notch cabinetry for both design industry veterans and the many others who appreciate quality craftsmanship. Their build-to-order services are excellent for kitchens, as they commit to making your space function to work with your lifestyle demands. 401 N. Western Ave 312.829.4300 or



Known as the store for architectural eye-catchers, Revival boasts an array of vintage and antique objects. From home and garden furniture to lighting and mirrors, every item carries a unique history that becomes a topic of conversation for its owner. 1401 W. Irving Park Rd. 773.248.1211 or

Renowned cabinet designer Christopher Peacock offers custom cabinetry in his Merchandise Mart showroom. His high-end pieces are designed and made in the United States, and grace some of the finest homes in the country. 400 N. Robertson Blvd. 312.321.9500 or

RooM & boARd

dE giuLio KiTChEn dEsign

At Room & Board, great design is more than a trend. It’s the combination of everything we’re passionate about. Timeless, American-made home furnishings created for modern living. Discover furniture and accessories that reflect your style and fit the way you live. Visit them in Oak Brook, Skokie or Downtown. 55 E. Ohio St. 312.222.0970 or

Owner Mick De Giulio has gathered an impressive group of architects, interior designers, artisans and craftsmen to create stunning kitchens. Specializing exclusively in kitchen interior architecture, de Giulio has spent nearly 25 years personalizing kitchens for his clients. 222 Merchandise Mart Plz., Ste. 121 312.494.9200 or

sALvAgE onE


Customers flock to this 100,000-square-foot warehouse to sort through a selection of artifacts found all over the world. The huge space is stocked with every kind of antique: Think porcelain bathtubs, mantels, church doors and original stone from historic buildings. 1840 W. Hubbard St. 312.733.0098 or


Dramatic lighting, free-standing pieces and frosted glass are some of the features Ernestomeda brings to modern kitchen design. Gorgeous woods combined with stainless steel and aluminum create stunning, efficient kitchens—both modern and inviting. 222 Merchandise Mart Plz., Ste. 128 312.329.0229 or

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hAuTE Living Binova Kitchens at Haute Living has a rich and diversified catalog that repeatedly earns them Italy’s Compasso d’Oro design award for kitchen systems in timeless designs; a perfect fit for Chicago’s residential market. Binova is exclusively available in the United States through Haute Living. 222 W. Kinzie Street 312.329.9000

KohLER Featuring a comprehensive mix of kitchen and bath merchandise. The store features a broad range of styles, colors and faucet finishes. Kohler’s interactive products are completely functional so customers can see the products at work in the store. 222 Merchandise Mart Plz., Ste. 100 312.755.2510 or

LEfRoy bRooKs Manufactured in England, this company features gorgeous pieces including fixtures for the kitchen and bathroom, showers, bathtubs, toilets, bidets, lighting and more. Products are classic and refined, yet maintain an air of contemporary design. 222 Merchandise Mart Plz., Ste. 163 312.755.0776 or

MiELE, inC. Immer Besser, meaning forever better, is this German company’s philosophy. The brand itself is recognized worldwide for quality and innovation. They offer a wide selection of appliances as well as live product displays for cooking programs and educational seminars. 554 Green Bay Road 800.843.7231 or

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nEff KiTChEns NEFF of Chicago is a custom design boutique, featuring the exquisite cabinetry of NEFF Kitchens. Old world craftsmanship meets innovative technology 0 8to 8 1create 3 8 9 design 3 7 7 4Nirvana 5 6 0 6 .—LIa ,vast o garray a ci hofCexotic , 5 1 7wood eti ugrains, S ni l k n ar F . N 0 3 6 3 0 N . F r a n k l i n S u i t e 7 1 5 , C h i c a g o , I L . 6 0 6 5 4 7 7 3 9 8 3 1 8 8 0 colors, metallics and finishes. That’s why NEFF cabinets adorn some of the finest homes of distinction throughout the world. 222 Merchandise Mart Plz., Ste. 144 312.467.9585 or

PoggEnPohL Germany’s oldest furniture brand has always been known as a trendsetter for innovative kitchen design. Spectacular and daring design and the unmistakable form of the company’s own lines have repeatedly won the attention and appreciation of a broad international 312.755.9023 or audience. 222 Merchandise Mart Pl., Ste. 138

PoLifoRM Poliform embodies the best of Italian design, with luxury finishes and uncompromising quality. Varenna, the kitchen division of Poliform, is highly sophisticated, with elegant designs that feature timber, stone, glass and steel. 222 Merchandise Mart Plz., Ste. 110 312.222.8465 or

sMARTRooMs When you combine the world’s finest cabinetry with some of Chicagoland’s most talented, on-staff designers, you get Smartrooms. An exclusive distributor of the Wood-Mode family of products, Smartrooms provides the key ingredients for creating breathtaking kitchens & baths. 222 Merchandise Mart Plz., Ste. 119 312.644.4446 or

snAidERo ChiCAgo Snaidero offers luxury Italian cabinetry for kitchens and baths. The company brings European modernism to its showroom through sleek cabinetry. Snaidero offers a wide variety of colors and finishes in contemporary and traditional styling, which provides clients with customizable options. 222 Merchandise Mart Plz., Ste. 140 312.644.6662 or


ThE sub-zERo woLf showRooM


Your dream kitchen can found in the official Sub-Zero/Wolf showroom. In a no pressure non-sales environment, their showroom consultant is committed to outfitting your kitchen with the Sub-Zero refrigeration, Wolf cooking appliances and Best by Broan ventilation products that will work strategically for your kitchen. Schedule an appliance consultation today. 196 Exchange Blvd. 630.872.5100 or

Elements’ Jeannine and Toby personally select their own items during frequent buying excursions. The collection includes handcrafted jewelry, accessories, cashmere scarves, objets d’art and more. The unique items are often from limited collections, making their selection one of a kind. 741 N. Wells St. 877.642.6574 or

vALCuCinE With an ergonomic philosophy rooted in respect for man and nature in combination with a design that surpasses current trends, Valcucine offers kitchens that exceed modern expectations. Designs are green friendly and artistically innovative. 222 Merchandise Mart Plz., Ste. 106 312.755.0356 or

vEsTA Kitchen and bathroom cabinetry with an emphasis on clean, contemporary design is Vesta’s specialty. The German-based Leicht and America’s own Brentwood, are featured brands. Recently they’ve begun selling EcoSmart fireplaces and sleek Fuego Grills. 1357 W. Concord Pl. 773.252.7300 or

woodfACE CoMPAny Using sophisticated European construction methods and materials Woodface helps you make the most use of your space, in both function and form. By continuing to set high standards in customer service, interior design, customization and craftsmanship, they remain the leading manufacturer and installer of custom cabinetry in the Chicago market. 1620 Jarvis Ave. 847.357.8887 or

LANDSCAPE AND OUTDOOR ChiCAgo sPECiALTy gARdEns This full-service design/build firm specializes in rooftop gardens and urban landscapes with a focus on clean contemporary design. They do custom woodwork, natural stone, water features, outdoor kitchens and spas, furnishings and decorative elements that work in harmony with their environmentally conscious design ethics. Check out their rooftop display showroom. 688 N. Milwaukee Ave 312.243.7140 or

LIGHTING nEw METAL CRAfTs For over 75 years, New Metal Crafts has designed, manufactured and supplied decorative lighting fixtures. In addition to contemporary designs, expect to find an ample collection of vintage and antique fixtures. Custom 312.787.6991 or and restoration services available. 812 N. Wells St.

REMAins LighTing Offering beautifully restored antique lighting fixtures, as well as an original line of vintage-inspired fixtures and mirrors. All work is performed under the watchful eye of founder David Calligeros in their New York factory, ensuring that customers receive meticulously crafted fixtures. 222 Merchandise Mart Plz., Ste. 103 312.527.1300 or

OTHER/MISC CiTy EsCAPE gARdEn & dEsign City Escape offers a comprehensive range of design and build landscape services, creating unique and inviting spaces. A newly opened 16,000 sq. ft. garden and design center is a feast of botanical delights and gorgeous garden accessories. 3022 W. Lake St. 773.638.2000 or


fAbER-CAsTELL Since 1761, Faber-Castell has produced extraordinary writing instruments. The Graf von Faber-Castell collection fuses modern technology with classic design, offering pens, pencils, leather goods and desk accessories. Chicago retailers include Greer Fine Paper & Design, Paradise Pen and Razny Jewelers. 9450 Allen Dr. 800.311.8684 or

fAux dEsign sTudios Faux Design Studio is known as being one of the city’s premier decorative arts schools. Their recently expanded offerings of faux finishes and paints features cutting edge techniques and products. They’re also a certified training center and retail distributor of Faux Effects International®. 101 N Swift Road 630.627.1011 or

fig MEdiA inCoRPoRATEd This multilayered team of creative professionals is the complete package for any major event. From conception and design to music and graphic designers, no stone is ever left unturned. They provide deejay services that are sophisticated and creative. 1120 W. Granville Ave. 773.338.1334 or

häfELE Häfele’s Chicago showroom is a popular destination for architects, designers and the woodworking industry. Visit them and view examples from all their product categories, like their famous sliding systems, access control, furniture fittings, home organization and decorative hardware. 154 W. Hubbard St. 312.467.2225 or

hEffERnAn LAndsCAPE dEsign Recognized for strong, clean geometric lines, Heffernan is a design/build firm. From project inception to installation, their crew creates landscapes in diverse styles that are all marked by beautiful stonework, water features 773.539.1946 or and lush, unusual plantings. 3741 W. Agatite Ave.

LEE LuMbER Whether you are looking for custom cabinetry, a certified installer or an architect, Lee Lumber can help. Founded in 1952, it has grown to become the largest lumberyard in Chicago. Second location on the Southside. See website for various Chicago locations

LindA wARREn gALLERy Linda Warren Gallery showcases local and national emerging and mid-career artists working in all mediums and styles, with an emphasis on painting, drawing, mixed media and sculpture. The gallery emphasizes strong workmanship combined with unique and original content. Work often has both narrative and emotional qualities and explores contemporary ideas. 1052 W. Fulton Market 312.432.9500 or

MMPi (AnTiquEs show) This international antiques fair is a bi-yearly event that unites some of the world’s finest sellers with some of the savviest shoppers. The fair not only features an exceptional range of antiques and fine art, it attracts high-profile speakers and charitable events. Tickets can be purchased on the web or at the door. 222 Merchandise Mart Plaza 800 677 6278 or

ThE nAnz CoMPAny Makers of custom door hardware suited to both traditional and modern interiors, The Nanz Company is renowned for its clean interpretation of classic forms. Collaborating with designers and architects, the company combines modern manufacturing with old-world techniques to allow for

endless customization and a high level of detail. 222 Merchandise Mart Plz., Ste. 103 312.527.1300 or

nEiwEEM indusTRiEs, inC. This steel fabrication and design company focuses does it all. They design and install catwalks, mezzanines, staircases and other random fabrications for plants and production lines. They also produce a wide range of custom ornamental railings, fences and gates for residential and corporate use. 21 Greenview Rd 800.969.8142 or

Furniture from Pa r a dise

sTATE fARM (Ann noLAn) With State Farm’s long history and Ann Nolan’s expertise, you are sure to be in good company. The Wicker Park/Bucktown location for this Auto, Home and Life insurance agency will surely guide you in making tough decisions that can affect you and your family in the long run. 1631 N. Milwaukee Ave. 773. 342.5300 or

sTuART-RodgERs PhoTogRAPhy A Chicago-based photography firm for more than 60 years, StuartRodgers is well known for commercial photography that is at the cutting edge of technology. With a client list that includes many national and international firms, they bring the professionalism and creative touch required. 375 W. Erie C103 877.307.0762 or

TAbLE MAnnERs Owner Holly Stein offers customers a fine selection of tabletop accessories, tablecloths, dinnerware, flatware, home décor and gifts to brighten up any room. A recently expanded website makes shopping 847.492.9664 or at Table Manners even easier. 2112 Central St.

ThE big PiCTuRE This home entertainment specialist designs and installs dedicated home theaters, media rooms and game rooms, as well as family room makeovers. The company’s single-room and multi-room systems emphasize high performance, reliability and ease of use—all executed with passion and style. 1211 Wilmette Ave 847.256.1882 or

wiREd on bAnK LAnE Wired On Bank Lane offers a multitude of services. This home theater solutions company, is a custom electronics retailer that focuses on true satisfaction and high-end customer service. They offer video, audio and home theater solutions throughout the North Shore and Chicago, using superior products. In-home consultations are also available. 645 N. Bank Lane 847.234.9150

REAL ESTATE, BUILDERS, DEVELOPERS EMiLy sAChs wong An impressive sales record quickly made Emily Sachs Wong a member of Koenig & Strey’s President’s Club. Her sales have continued to skyrocket, offering clients unparalleled real estate options along the lakefront and in Lincoln Park, Bucktown and Wicker Park. 1940 N. Clark St. or

EnviRons dEvELoPMEnT Interesting architecture, skilled construction and savvy development combine to produce luxurious homes. Environs has built over 100 exceptional homes in Chicago’s most desirable neighborhoods since 1991. 3060 N. Lincoln Ave. 773.665.8170 or


2644 Green Bay Road • Evanston, IL (847) 328-7777

Let Us Design A Grand Statement For Your Home.

MAgELLAn dEvELoPMEnT With a portfolio that spans the entire Chicago area and beyond, this accomplished real estate organization continues to develop awardwinning properties. From the $4 billion, mixed-use Lakeshore East community to being given the 2009 Best of Chicago Award, this developer is no industry amateur. 303 E. Wacker Dr., Ste. 2750 312.642.8869 or

TEn EAsT dELAwARE Architect Lucien Lagrange’s Ten East Delaware offers a contemporary classic, design for effortless luxury. A combination of classical architecture and modern interiors are sure to make these units the future envy of all their Gold Coast neighbors. Construction for these residences are slated for completion in early 2010. 33 W. Delaware Pl. 312.397.1010 or

ThE bRixTon gRouP This residential real estate development company specializes in flowing, spacious designs and precision-oriented value, developing properties for home buyers. Their approach to outstanding homes artfully integrates classic architecture and interior design with quality craftsmanship and finishes and modern amenities. 106 N. Aberdeen St., Ste. 100 312.204.5067 or


Custom Rails, Gates, Furniture & Accessories

ATELiER LAPChi Lapchi holds a pre-eminent position among the world’s finest carpet makers, producing hand-woven custom carpets in the most responsible manner possible. This is Chicago’s exclusive source for Lapchi’s Textile Collection and Texere carpets. The Merchandise Mart, Ste. 6-160 312.321.0900 or

hAnnoun Rugs As artists, owners Nina and Mark Hannoun are inspired by Moroccan design. They travel several times a year to small villages and markets to select wool rugs hand-woven by the Berber women. Highlights of their collection are the diamond patterned Beni Ouarain rugs in natural tones. Free shipping in USA is also available. 3817 N Lincoln Ave 773.248.0033 or

PEERLEss iMPoRTEd Rugs For 70 years, three generations of the same family have offered decorative area and traditional Oriental rugs from top national brands. Special needs, such as trimming, binding and fringing, can be accommodated in Peerless Rugs’ own workroom. 3033 N. Lincoln Ave. 773.525.0296 or

STONE,TILE, GRANITE biRgER juELL, LTd. Birger Juell installs and maintains hand-finished antique reproduction and contemporary floors for both residential and commercial interiors. Specializing in floor designs that draw on centuries-old traditions of European craftsmen, each floor surface is created by hand to the client’s 312.464.9663 or specifications. 222 Merchandise Mart Plz., Ste. 131

finE LinE Located in Chicago’s River North neighborhood, this tile gallery boasts an impressive selection of over 40 unique tile and mosaic manufactures. Their collections utilize an expansive array of materials ranging in styles from traditional to highly decorated. 209 W. Illinois St. 312.670.0300 or ARLINGTON HE IGHTS







Artistica Italian Gallery The Finest Italian Home Décor…

gRAniTE & MARbLE REsouRCEs Granite & Marble Resources has been a direct importer of discount luxury kitchen and bath building products for over 30 years. Offering imaginative stone and glass mosaics, as well as a wide range of marble, granite, limestone, travertine and more. 222 Merchandise Mart Plz., Ste. 115 312.670.4400 or

Hand-Painted Ceramics Deruta Dinnerware “Old World” Tuscan Majolica

LEwis fLooR & hoME Founded in 1954, this family-owned startup has a stellar reputation serving homeowners, commercial clients and builders with their selection of carpet, laminates, stone, tile and more. Offering customers the finest quality floor coverings at the lowest prices. 1455 W. Fullerton Ave. 773.935.9599 or

PARis CERAMiCs The London-based stone, tile and mosaics company offers an extensive array of ceramic, stone and terra cotta tiles out of its Chicago showroom. The international firm specializes in antique limestone and terra cotta floors reclaimed from castles, châteaux and farmhouses. 222 Merchandise Mart Plz., Ste. 146 312.467.9830 or

sTonE soLuTions And MoRE Stone Solutions and More specializes in the designing and manufacturing of custom marble fireplaces, exquisite tiling, statues, sinks and other natural stone creations. A wide variety of styles makes Stone Solutions and More fitting for any interior or exterior application. 553 N. Wolf Rd. 847.520.1525 or

ThE TiLE gALLERy The Tile Gallery carries a wide selection of artisan-made tiles, including glass and metal along with exquisite stone mosaics. A broad collection of lighting and fireplaces can also be found. 555 North Franklin 312.467.9590 or

990 Green Bay Rd. Winnetka, IL Hubbard Woods Design District Tel. 847-446-2916

• •

TiLE wERKs Form, function and beauty meet together in unison at Tile Werks. This Highland Park-based company specializes in an assortment of tile options for the kitchen, bathroom and more. They carry Sonoma Tile Works and offer hand-painted tiles can be customized to suit your taste and needs. Appointments only. 2055 Green Bay Rd # B 847.432.0697 or

uniquE d’ CLAy Handmade tiles for fireplace surrounds, backsplashes, walls, hallways, centerpieces and more. The partnership of ceramic clays and a wide variety of styles, textures and colors brings out an exquisite result in an extensive collection of simple and elegant designs. 312.421.0624 or

organic sustainable vintage grasshopper 510 is Bucktown’s favorite eco boutique, catering

uRbAn ARChAEoLogy When fine, old buildings were demolished, treasured pieces were carefully removed and preserved by Urban Archaeology experts, restoring antique architectural elements and giving them new life. They also feature a high quality line of lighting, bath accessories, washstands and medicine cabinets. 222 Merchandise Mart Plz., Ste. 108 312.527.4627 or

to the sophisticated eco-minded shopper. Carrying eco-friendly gift and home accents—everything from jewelry and baby gifts to hip décor for your home—grasshopper 510 provides people with choices and options they can feel good about.

recycled repurposed all-natural


an eco boutique at 1944 north damen, chicago, il 60647 | 773.292.0510 |


Fine Prints!

Noël Ashby is the under-the-radar creator of some of the most over-the-top designs in the biz By Lisa Cregan | Photography by Maria Harms

If Noël Ashby’s fi rst venture had gone better she might never have become a superstar “surface designer” (meaning she dreams up patterns for every exposed wall, floor, countertop and furniture piece that comes her way). Her original effort after graduating from the Kansas City Art Institute, creating hand-printed sarongs, fell fl at (except for that one sale to Mom), and so Ashby went to one of her professors for advice. “He made me a sandwich, showed me how to put patterns into repeat, and sent me off to New York to meet with Donghia,” she laughs. Now 42, Ashby’s one-woman show has morphed into a multifaceted, Chicagobased design studio where she’ll dream up beautiful, flowing patterns for almost any surface handed to her. She’s done laminate patterns for the walls of high-end retail, glass designs for health care facilities,

fabrics for the aforementioned upholstery powerhouse Donghia, and a new billowy white bloom pattern for Flor’s just-released Mums The Word carpet tiles. “I’m known for non-feminine botanicals—strong, organic shapes,” says Ashby, who admits to being obsessively aware of pattern. “The way the metal scraps are piled at the junkyard on Webster excites me just as much as watching a stem bend gracefully against the weight of a flower,” she says. Variety like that is the spice of Ashby’s life. She enjoys the challenge of working with different materials, even things as wacky as the bicycle inner tubes she used to cover an ottoman. Up next? Projects much too secret to talk about for CB2, and a mysterious comment about working in 3-D. Could it be the project she’s working on with industrial design luminary Scott Wilson? Wait and see.

TOP OF HER GAME Surface designer Noël Ashby.

136 |


Fall 2009

ASHBY’S HOTS XY Decor Nest Pendant Lamp, health care reform, Abigail Glaum-Lathbury clothing,, living roofs, Oaxacan single-color embroidery, morning coff ee, Nurses for Africa, Esther Derkx dishes, succulents ASHBY’S NOTS Hummers, poor urban planning, animal skins, overproduction, Bluetooth as a social engagement accessory, sound bites, doggy prams, plastic water bottles, overpackaged products

516 N.Wells Chicago, IL 60610 T (312) 329-1550


www.antoniolupi.it_planeta, tuba, block light, sartoriale, design carlo colombo_a.d. riccardo fattori_ph.zerotremedia

CS Interiors  

Edição de Outono de 2009

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