Sneak Peek: My DC Studio

Posted August 9th, 2010 by design4men and filed in Interior Design
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This week, I will be guest blogging at Today, I posted an article on a mural in my DC studio that I created by transferring the line work from a Marimekko wallpaper. I took some photographs and while I was at it snapped some shops of my place which is a work in process. I have started with the basics and I am about 50% done. I am only posting the the living room, which doubles as my home office and kitchen. Stay tuned for more on the design which will include painting accent walls, vintage industrial furnishings, and much, much more.

The color palette is monochromatic primarily because the walls are freshly painted an off white.  Accent walls will be different tones of gray. In my home office / office area, my I love the use of an IKEA kitchen cabinet for storage above my desk.  The walnut desk is temporary…I will be replacing it soon, with something smaller in scale.  Additionally, a cowhide rug, end tables and a custom bench will be added to the living room.  I despise the carpet but what can you do, it is a rental.

My splurges thus far, have been the Blu Dot Paramount sofa which I absolutely love and a 42″ flat screen television.  The scale of the TV is questionable but it is great for watching movies, I feel like I am at the theater.

The kitchen will be receiving a chalkboard backslash wall and I have a plan to add shelving over the bar which I am excited about.  I am thinking toledo stools for the bar.  No photos yet of the bathroom and bedroom because they are still works in progress – however here is a sketch of the bedroom design…

The same curtains  from the living room will define the entry.  The accent wall will be charcoal gray and I plan to do a coffee sack inspired stencil on this burlap-like fabric which is left over from a project.  The nightstands (click here to view) and pendant will be vintage industrial.

Stay tuned for more on the design process!  And check out the article on Curbly by clicking here.

Room Dividers by Vital Steel NYC

Posted August 4th, 2010 by design4men and filed in Furniture, Interior Design
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Vital Steel NYC is a design studio formed by Benno Schoberth, a Film Editor and Robbin Brosterman, a Design Director. The couple initially created the single panel “apartment jewel” to enhance their own small studio  in Manhattan.  Vital Steel offers modern steel and hand-blown glass room dividers & screens. Their collection elegantly unites Mid-century modern with Art Deco.  ANDRA, pictured above, is a graceful three panel free-standing room divider.  And UNA is a uniquely adaptable one panel laser cut divider which appears in the picture below in their New York apartment.  Check out the Vital Steel website for more info and pricing by clicking here.


IMAGE CREDITS: Image 1 courtesy of Vital Steel NYC, Image two by Susan Farley for The New York Times

Digging the New West Elm

I am really enjoying the new direction of West Elm in their Fall 2010 catalog.  The design team has integrated some of the vintage elements while preserving the West Elm look.  The result feels more like what a home should be, a mix! I always love to see a product catalog that is inspiring from a design standpoint.  And it helps people envision a space that doesn’t feel like it came straight from a catalog.  I stopped cold when I saw the above image.  I love the gallery of frames and the wallpaper.  After doing some digging, I located the wallpaper which is “elizabeth on shimmer” from the eco-friendly madisonandgow.  Here are more new West Elm items that I love.

Woven veneer pendant

Jigsaw Spin Bookcase (L) Wood & Resin Boxes (R)

Tripod Table


Images from West Elm

Raw Loft in Brussels

Posted July 16th, 2010 by design4men and filed in Architecture, Interior Design
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Some spaces perplex even me. The idea of letting it all hang out is hard to swallow prompting people to store most of their items out of site.  This apartment featured on OWI is all about exposure.  The consistent use of wood shelving throughout cohesively ties all of the rooms in the home together.  Additionally, the minimal furnishings prevent the space from feeling cluttered.  Essentially the items on the shelve function as artwork in the space.


The living area / office combo features blinds lining the entire window wall, creating a nice screen adding even more texture to the exposed brick walls.

The barn door is propably one of the largest that I’ve seen creating more of the feeling of a portal at the door. Although I am a bit confused about why there is a skateboard in the middle of the room.  I always find it odd when just one element in an organized space is out of place.  But perhaps the owner uses the skateboard as transport from room to room.


The detail of the accentuated edges of the shelves creates a nice slated wall at this platform area.  We find the same shelving in the kitchen/laundry as well which feels quite industrial and intimate.

The bathroom is definitely my favorite space tying in the shelving with the wood slats of the tub surround.  And I love the use of steel for the tub even though it makes me feel like I would be bathing in a large sink.  Nothing in this home is expected and clearly there is a little something to letting it all hang out.

Images from OWI, photography by Vercruysse Frederik


Design by Workstead

Posted July 14th, 2010 by design4men and filed in Architecture, Furniture, Interior Design, Lighting
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Color me inspired by Workstead, a New York based design studio led by Stefanie Brechbuehler and Robert Andrew Highsmith.  They are focused on creating dynamic environments that are environmentally responsible.  The images included are of the inspiring East Village Apartment completed in 2009.  The warmth of the space is overwhelming achieved with the use of walnut in furnishings mixed with the deep gray sofa, all against somber white walls.

Although, not a part of the above project, I love the sliding kitchen in Brooklyn, NY.

As if interior design wasn’t enough, Workstead does virtually all things design from architecture to lighting.  My favorite, the industrial 6 arm chandelier below, also available in a 3 arm.


Interior Design Tips for Single Guys

Posted June 29th, 2010 by design4men and filed in Interior Design
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Last week, I did an interview with Dave Odegard for AOL’s Rented Spaces. Dave was working on piece about interior decorating for guys, mainly on how to transition from the “dorm room” look into creating an adult space. I jumped at the opportunity to share insight on this issue. Check out the full article, “Interior Decorating for Men, Made Easy” on Rented Spaces by clicking here.

Baxter Finley Barber & Shop

Posted June 10th, 2010 by design4men and filed in Interior Design, Leisure, Style
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For over 40 years, Baxter of California, has been known for providing premium men’s grooming products.  This month, the company opened a shop on La Cienega Blvd. in Los Angeles, CA, called Baxter Finley Barber & Shop.  Named after the company’s founder, Baxter Finley, the shop showcase their products and barbers provide cuts and shaves for patrons.   The old world inspired design is masculine combining rugged features like Douglass fir flooring and exposed wood beams along with the sleek finishes including subway tile and marble counter tops.  The highlight is the restored Koken “White King” porcelain and leather chairs which are from the early 1900’s.  Kudos to Baxter for creating a refined shop that feels modern while retaining the tradition of the old school  barber shop experience.

IMAGE CREDITS: Images from Baxter Finley

Cloud Light Fixture

Posted June 5th, 2010 by design4men and filed in Interior Design, Lighting
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I love the light fixture in this great space by Asler Valero on Design Therapy from the Housing Works Design on a Dime event in New York. Clearly channeling the Frank Gehry Cloud Suspension lamp for Vitra.  Gehry came up with the design for the lamp by packing paper cups and stapling them together.

After seeing the fixture, I began making phone calls to locate where it came from. Ultimately, I discovered that similar to the Gehry fixture,  the lamp was actually  created by stapling paper plates together.   Now, I am inspired to design something for my place.

Cloud Suspension Lamp by Gehry

For more information on the Design on a Dime Benefit, click here.

IMAGE CREDITS: Image 1 from Design Therapy, Image 2 from Cosa Verde, Image 3 from Unica Home

Deptford House, London

Posted May 17th, 2010 by design4men and filed in Architecture, Interior Design
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Strolling about in Dupont Circle, I came across Kulturas Secondhand Books. By the by, vintage bookstores are my new favorite thing…the key is to find one with an Architecture section – I could have been there for hours. While perusing the book, From: New Houses in Old Buildings, I happened upon this project by Mark Guard Architects.   The firm converted a car repair workshop into a two-bedroom home in Deptford, London.  The design element that initially caught my attention was the use of the copper plaster  floating wall in the master bedroom (shown above).   I love the relationship of the way the copper subtly mixes with the steel and concrete structural elements found in the renovation.

The renovation incorporated removing old roofs, adding a new entrance, and new enclosed garden.  Sensitivity towards views and daylight throughout the house was the main objective of the designers.  The living room and kitchen are on the first floor to take advantage of the views of St. Paul’s Church and Greenwich.  The bedrooms on the ground floor open out to the walled in garden.  The overall architectural design is so timelessly modern making it hard to believe that the project was completed in 1996.

For more images and information on this project, check out the website by clicking here.

IMAGE CREDITS: All Images from Guard Tillman Pollock

Wild about Brazillian Architecture

Posted May 14th, 2010 by design4men and filed in Architecture, Interior Design
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Wallpaper* is wild about Brazil after moving operations there for several weeks for their Born in Brazil issue. Rather than simply taking a snapshot of the country in the issue, will be updated for the coming weeks with more news, video coverage, interviews and more.  After checking out the directory of architects, I can see why they want to continue this story.  I have included some of my favorites fromthe directory of architects.

Architect:  Mareines + Patalano
Project: GLEM Offices

Architect: Humberto Hermeto
Project: Casa JE, Vale dos Cristais

Architect: SPBR
Project: Ubatuba

To check out the directory of Brazilian architects on, by clicking here.

IMAGE CREDITS: Image one from Mareines + Patalano; All other images from Wallpaper