Wednesday, August 28, 2013


I hadn't made an effort to coordinate my last trip to New York with touring this season's New York Gift Fair. Our Wilson Street boutique has been closed since the beginning of the year. It seemed somewhat anti-climatic to contemplate touring the aisles of the Javits without the rush of the hunt for those baubles and trinkets that would make the shelves and display tables of our former store sizzle. It wasn't until Sunday that I even realized the fair was in progress. I needed to find some accessories for a current client. I had exhausted all my usual go-to places with no great results so I caught a cab and rode over to the piers. The show's management threw me a curve. The home section where I usually do most of my shopping had been moved from the piers back to the Javits and now designer resources and new product had taken over the pier, disappointing. I hitched a ride on one of the free buses. By this time in the day I was down to an hour and a half until the show closed its doors for the day. I had to psych myself up for a sprint through the part of the fair I thought would give me the most bang for the buck. Turns out many of the vendors whose booths I was looking forward to perusing had taken a pass on this new venue arrangement. This year's show was low on volume and high on ho-hum. Turns out my hour and a half was more than sufficient to hit the home section from front to back and not feel as if I had missed a thing.
I can't say all was bad. I did discover some finds. One was a discovery of an old friend we hadn't seen for years, Shades of Grey. Gorgeous accessories made from stonewashed linen with the delicate touch of mother-of-pearl buttons. We bought from them back when we had our store high in the Catskill Mountains and hadn't seen them at the show for almost six years. Good design often spawns from simplicity. Shades of Grey has that elegance of restraint.
One of our truest supporters has been Beth Dempsey and her PR company Images and Details. We knew Beth had taken on another company, Oomp,
an idea developed by a group of housewives who make beautiful painted furniture and accessories for a Transitional market.
Playing off of that same theme, Mr. Brown of London was one of the few vendors I hadn't seen before. They made a big splash from across the pond on the shores of New York with their quirky furniture and accessory line.
Clearly this was a company with sufficient financial backing. Their booth was a riot of color and pattern. They showcased a bloody delightful homage to mid-century design and I loved it.
I've seen Oggetti before. Their product can lean a little toward the predictable but they had this coffee table that made a real statement. Comprised of a walnut base and clear glass top it was like a mathematical spiral equation made out of wood.
Having a seventeen-year-old daughter I felt this booth was right on point for that young adult demographic. Those crazy hippie designs of mixed fabrics, sequins and flamboyant color are all the rage with our daughter and her friends. This vendor probably has a small window of popularity but for right now they have that market cornered in a good way.
I couldn't resist these Euro sized pillows form Marcel Miller. Made of the softest terrycloth and closed with over-sized pearl buttons these pillows would have been a must have for our store. Their color palette is minimal coming in an icy white, cool steel blue and a neutral taupe. This product is sophistication and comfort combined.
Another furniture manufacturer that caught my eye was Made Goods. I'd love to find a client who would have the hutzpah to use this black and white resin tabletop. It comes in rounds from 48" to 60". This top has drama written all over it.
I also loved this faux shagreen side table. I'm not so sure about the oval cap on the bottom but beyond that it's a very handsome table.
I tried to get Indigo Imports to sell me one of these bags off the floor but they wouldn't do it. They were all reasonably priced and beautifully constructed. Now I have to wait to find a retailer who is stocking them and pay double the price from wholesale to retail.
Plan on seeing these iron pyramid trellises in our garden come spring 2014. They come in a perfect rust finish. They are regal and sophisticated, much like the way I envision myself, just kidding.

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