Roll and Hill Excel Floor Lamp

Posted July 13th, 2010 by design4men and filed in Furniture, Industrial Design, Lighting
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Since I saw the Excel floor lamp in the April issue of Details, I have been pining over it and the rest of the collection including the table lamp and chandelier are also great. The fixtures were designed for Roll and Hill by Rich Brilliant Willing, a studio composed of a trio of designers in Manhattan.   The floor lamp comes with a hefty price tag ($2000) so I have of course been locating cheap alternatives.  Here are some of my favorites:

West Elm Loft Floor Lamp ($150) Task Lamp ($80)  Can someone say knock off?  These are surprisingly similar to the Excel floor and table lamp.  I am certainly not complaining because I love the prices!

CB2 Beacon Floor Lamp ($250) – adding a touch of a 1940s spotlight

CB2 L_MP Floor Lamp ($200) Brought to CB2 by Italio design team A/R Studio
IMAGE CREDITS: Images 1 from Rich Brilliant Willing, Images 2-3 from Roll and Hill, Image 4 from West Elm, Image 5-6 from CB2

Nelson Swagger

Posted October 19th, 2009 by design4men and filed in Furniture, Interior Design
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Nelson Swag Leg Desk

Not one to recommend knock offs over the original but sometimes saving some dough makes it worth it.  I love the Nelson Swag Leg Desk (1958) designed by George Nelson.  It is the perfect size for a small apartment or condo.  Making a statement without taking up a lot of room.Not to mention that there are a suite of products that incorporate the iconic swag leg from dining tables to the chair shown above.  The cost of the desk, $1849…not bad for a modern classic.

swoop-desk-by-cb2-m.jpg ursuline
CB2 Swoop Desk                                                               Ligne Roset Ursuline Desk

So, how about the CB2 swoop desk as a cheaper alternative, a steal at $300.  Now I must say that I would make some tweaks.  While I dig the walnut top, I am not a fan of the white drawers and legs.  The look appears cheap, so I would stain the drawers and paint the legs a deep brown.  The result will be much more high-end looking.  Why such a change?  Check out the  Ursuline desk from Ligne Roset, $2360.  The walnut top and cross-shaped satin brown steel base option looks much more refined and less like a knock off.

IMAGE CREDITS: Swag  Desk from DWR, Swoop Desk from CB2, Ursuline desk from Ligne Roset

Let There Be Light!


Lighting is incredibly important in creating the right mood in a space.  At the moment, I am into sleek, simple lighting.

[Noguchi Akari ] I have always been inspired by the lightness and warm glow provided by the Akari illuminated sculptures of Isamu Noguchi.  I noguchi2enjoyed learning more about Noguchi and the Akari collection in the article Sculpted Light in Modernism magazine.  Akari or light in Japanese refers to both weightlessness and illumination which certainly describes Noguchi’s fixtures.  The stunning photograph above  is  Noguchi with his first light sculpture, Column of Light in plastic and metal (1950).  You may also know Noguchi for his iconic glass coffee table of 1944 for Herman Miller.  The Akari model “D” is my favorite of his light fixtures, the 75D is shown left.  The pendant glows softly and appears to float and I love seeing installations where his various ceiling lamps are clustered.  To purchase lighting and furniture by Noguchi, check out the Noguchi Museum Store.

[ Edison-Era Lightbulbs ] Did someone say that industrial is in?  Form and function unify to create an warm lighting experience  in these Edison-Era lightbulb pendants.  I have noticed the trend for more paired down pendant lighting in bars and restaurants for a while now. 

edisonpendants edisontable

These Ferrowatt pendants (above) caught my eye in the April 2009 issue of GQ.  Ferrowatt provides reproductions of the original bulbs invented by Thomas Alva Edison.  I am dying to use these fixtures over a bar or some other really creative installation like in the library-esque Used Book Cafe below, I spotted in Architectural Digest Espana.   In addition to the Edison pendants, I also like the table lamps shown above from Acquire of Boston.


[ Photographer's Light ] Inspired by the vintage photographer’s lights, this Ethan Allen photographer’s light provides a flexible lighting solution for many environments.  While I would love to find a vintage photographers light, this one is a great alternative.  And the pricing is reasonable at $549.

photographerslamp[ Industrial Pendant ] The CB2 Industry Pendant is one of my favorites on the market at the moment.  Partly because the price is great at $200.  Reminiscent of old warehouse pendants, this oversize gem features high-gloss black steel and diffused lighting.  I think it works great in a dining room or over a desk in a home office. / zoom

Consider the impact of lighting in your space.  These decorative and functional fixtures add sparkle and warmth .  And I love the idea of blending the softness of Noguchi’s iconic fixtures with the hard and industrial.