Top picks in May – Serena and Lily

Top picks in May – Serena and Lily

I could spend hours on the Serena and Lily’s website (www.serenaandlily.com).  Earthy and neutral colors and vintage patterns will allow you to mix and match with majority of their product line.   You can’t beat the variety of pillow selections from solid colors, embroidery, fringe edges, and patterns.

There is a come back of natural rattan and woven materials which Serena and Lily does very well.  You can custom set your dining table with corner benches which are now in fashion.  There are also quality table lamps that can be displayed in all rooms of the house.

I will definitely be using Serena and Lily in my current residential design and I am looking forward to show you how I position these selections very soon.

AA

May Picks 2018

 

A – Ross Dining Bench

Settee

B – Vintage Olympia Pillows
Pillows 1
C- Mason Swing Arm Sconce

Swing Arm Lamp

D – Huntington Baskets (Indigo)

Baskets

E – Abbott Table Lamp

Abbot Lamp

F- Cove Rattan Lanterns

Lanterns

 

G- Riviera Counter Stool

Stool

HIGH POINT MARKET, APRIL 2018 – Developing a Sense of Belonging

HIGH POINT MARKET, APRIL 2018 – Developing a Sense of Belonging

What a successful week at the High Point Furniture Market with new exciting materials and furniture that are representing the trends of today.  It was such a privilege to be a member of the “Instagram Takeover” where designers identify the hot trends from this year’s spring market.

Angelo at Europe2you

It became obvious to me as the Fresh to Follow designer, that my topic Design to Create Memories was evident with the fashion from the market. Creative directors are using memories of their past as an influence for styles and colors. These talented group of professionals are in the 30-40 age group, so the 70’s decade has now a strong element in what we are experiencing today.

Design to Create Memories is about analyzing styles and space from someone’s emotional past and present. It’s design that’s more than just an object or a thing. To create a moment which reflects the combination of senses that’s nurtured through time and to connect and understand colors, textures, sounds, tastes, and aromas, that’s associated to your environment.  It’s going back to the design that resembles who you are without the interference of social media, technology, and furniture manufacturers.

Christopher Guy, Angelo, and Jane Syemour

It was a privilege to meet Jane Seymour and Christopher Guy, two very talented artists.

Fresh to Follow Instagram Series

europe2you

It was an easy decision to select europe2you as an exhibitor to follow. Their products are clean, beautiful, majestic, and traditional.  You could possibly blend anything from their product line, especially their glass and lighting fixtures.

Europe2you1
Light Fixtures that feel like France from europe2you

Bungalow 5

I have such vivid memories when living and working as a designer in NYC.  Meeting Luca Rensi (Part owner of Bungalow 5) was a highlight. We were both designers for high-end residential firms, and now he leads the way with exceptional occasional side tables, lighting, furniture, bookshelves, accessories, etc., …  He has captured the cool style of NYC that Bungalow 5 now represents.

Bungalow 5 2Bungalow 5 3
NYC style living from Bungalow 5

Selamant

It was such an enjoyable and refreshing surprise discovering Salamant from California. Carefree and holistic is what I can describe their image.  Natural materials mixed with clever shapes and forms allows Selamant to be daring and a little different.

Selama3Selama2.JPG
West Coast Influences from Selama

Kravet

One of the highlights was hanging out with a dear friend who is the creative director for Larry Laslo, a recognizable NYC design firm.  Julio Jimenez has exceptional taste and charisma which is why having him along with me to select new trends was a major highlight for me.

Angelo and Jimenez

Spending quality time with the creative director of Larry Laslo, Julio Jimenez

Larry Laslo continues to influence our interiors by designing upholstered furniture for Kravet.  Classic, high grade upholstery, Hamptons style, sophisticated, and a little Florida, describes the style of Larry Laslo’s Kravet line.

Kravet 2Kravet 1
                                               Larry Laslo for Kravet

Thibaut

If you are looking for fine furniture look no further than Thibaut. When you sit in their sofa or arm chair, you will realize that nothing will be more luxurious.  Plenty of traditional styles to choose from and their selection of fabrics ranges from modern to classical.

Thibuat 1

High end upholstery from Thibaut

Christopher Guy

If you want to talk about making a statement in the interior design world then Christopher Guy is the King of the Bold and Beautiful.  It’s like walking into a world of make-believe. The selection of étagères and art work are among the best for a high-end style.  It was such a pleasure to personally meet Christopher and celebrity Jane Seymour.

Christopher Guy

My favorite piece from the High Point 2018 April Market by Christopher Guy

Emdee International

Emdee

The color of culture from Emdee International

I remember meeting Manju, Deepa, and Jenny when I first arrived in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.  They are such lovely people and their products are an indication of their personalities.  Soft, elegant, gentle, harmonious, and vibrant is a good representation of their window treatments and pillows.

 

Arteriors

It’s so hard not to source at Arteriors when looking for lighting.  They have cornered the market for unique lighting trends that have not yet been replicated.

Arteriors 2
Arteriors 1

 Original and sophisticated lighting from Arteriors

Janus et Cie

There is remarkable outdoor furniture from Janus et Cie.  All their pieces are beautifully tailored for comfortable outdoor seating and dining.  The Amari High Back Chair was a highlight as its unique weaving material and grand shape makes this chair very appealing.

Janus et Cie

A grand style chair from Janus et Cie

Surya

Cultural influences are strong at Surya with an emphasis on pattern and bold tones of color.  Many eclectic products, including rugs, lighting, pillows, and accent furniture to select from.

Surya

Not afraid of color ? Check out Surya

Company C for Norwalk

Norwalk is another reliable source for upholstered furniture and bedding.  I always enjoy the new selections of fabrics and styles at each market which Norwalk leads with their direction in fashion and styles.

Company C

New trends of fabrics and bedding from Company C for Norwalk

Franco Crea

It was exciting to introduce Franco Crea at my Fresh to Follow presentation.  Apart from Design to Create Memories, my other ambition is to bridge the culture gap in furniture in North America and Australia.  Franco is a very talented designer from Australia and our goal together is to manufacture his furniture in the USA for retail distribution.

Franco

The Mesa stool from Franco Crea

This 2018 Spring High Point Market was fun.  It was a great start for me to be a part of this exciting new change in the interior design industry and to better understand that the High Point Market is more than just objects.  It’s about designers, creative directors, business women and men, enjoying and celebrating their visions from the past and of the future. This allows for the buyer to select what truly matters, which is to develop a sense of belonging in this interior world.

Katharine and Angelo

My beautiful and brilliant wife, Katharine Laidlaw, at the Heart Ball of Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

Song of the Market –  John Legend ( Penthouse floor ft. Chance the Rapper )

I think this song is a good indication of the times we live in.  The fashion, music, politics, and the décor of the video clip definitely has a trend we are all currently experiencing.  It’s a good time to start creating good memories! I was listening to this song during the market.

“The NeoCon of the South”

“The NeoCon of the South”

It was a privilege to be the guest speaker for the new contract showroom for Furnitureland South.  Vey nice showroom with the best manufactures to select from and great consultants.  Congratulations to owners Jeff and Jason Harris and Director Daniel Whicker. Big things are happening for Furnitureland South.

Portrait of Jeff Jason and Me

Jeff and Jason Harris (Owners of Furnitureland South)Vignette
Contract Furnitureland South Showroom in North Carolina. 

Going Home

Going Home

Its been 8 years since I left Adelaide and my family.  I now embark a return journey with two beautiful girls and a dear and wonderful wife.  This is the world that I grew up dreaming and thinking about the importance of space that we live and work in.  Family and tradition is the keystone in making the right choices in life and how you design your way of thoughts.  I can’t wait for my children to feel the same way as I do.  More information on Adelaide to come.

A beautiful score from Alexandre Desplat for the movie The Shape of Water.  This music reminds me of Adelaide and the adventures I have had with my Italian family. I hope you enjoy!

Reincarnation & the Dining Room

Reincarnation & the Dining Room

Life after death fascinates me. I’ve always felt that there is a reason to live which then carries to an afterlife.  I am also curious whether our senses travel when they disappear from our physical body, transcending to the elements of the environment. It’s like a rollercoaster of senses that has a beginning, an ending, and perhaps another beginning.

When I was studying my sports science degree in Australia, I was motivated to find ways to help athletes become better then their opponents by triggering their senses.  But first, I had to achieve this feeling myself.  I read a fair amount of motivating books but there was one book that changed my perception and understanding of self awareness. This book is called “The Complete Peaceful Warriors Way” by author Dan Millman.

Dan MillmanA great book to get in touch with your senses

So what if we build our senses to the point that it could affect our presence that guides us to a better path.  I believe this can happen and I am now aware that we can stimulate our five senses through multiple ways in an interior space. There is one particular room in a home that aligns all senses. The dining room.

This is a space where you are able to sit at a position and look directly into someone eyes, share the same aromas of a cooked meal, discuss stories and concerns, and taste the pleasures of food and drink. The dining room is where you start to teach your children and grow with your spouse. Unfortunately, it appears that we as a society have forgotten the function of the dining room.

I feel like its my duty to bring back the importance of the dining room and to refocus on perfecting our senses.  Getting in touch with our senses can create better memories for our children.  It is helping me with my children.

There are subtle things that can change the function of the dining room, such as the shape of the table. A rectangle dining table provides an intimate setting compared to a round dining table. Although its easier to have a conversation with a round table, you sit further away from the person opposite to you. Wall sconces and floor/table lamps illuminate the corners of the room in the evening which balances the pendant above the table.  Illuminating the corners of the room is crucial because it defines the angles allowing you to feel comfortable of your surroundings. Adding color and texture can enlighten a dining room.

The dining room is a blank canvas that allows you to explore your creative flair and personal style.  Legendary designer Albert Hadley once quoted that ” decoration is really about creating a quality of life, and a beauty in that life that nourishes the soul, that makes life beautiful”.

Top song to design your dining room – Nightmares on Wax (Shape your Future)

When I first started my career in New York City,  I began an internship with Cullman & Kravis.  I was the only male working amongst 14 young and stylish women.  I felt a little out of place but I was inspired by Ellie Cullman and the respect she had from her staff and clients.  I really enjoyed my time with this firm and it were these moments that set a higher standard for me.  I also learnt from Ellie the values of building long lasting relationships.  Her book, Decorating Master Class, is a classic guide to decorating for a “modern traditional” aesthetic.  I am always referring to her design opinion.

Cullman & Kravis A guide to decorating by a leading firm in NYC

All of these dining rooms (see images) from Cullman & Kravis show the clients interests in furniture, art, light fixtures, color, and texture.

Cullman & Kravis 1Urban City  – Sophisticated Dining Room by Cullman & Kravis

Cullman & Kravis 3

Clean and Modern – A welcoming dining room by Cullman & Kravis
Cullman & Kravis 2Traditional setting with an emphasis on abstract art by Cullman & Kravis
Cullman & Kravis 4Strong architectural details with colors to reflect the countryside by Cullman & Kravis

It’s a struggle to control our outside world and it’s easy to loose connection to your senses.  We are continually ignoring what we are feeling through compulsive habits that technology and social media are leading us towards.

It’s time to rebuild the dining room so that there is no escape from hiding your senses.  It’s time to sit down and enjoy your children’s voice again and look into their eyes.

Whether you believe in reincarnation or not, start working on improving your senses and create your new dining room. This will help you live better for this moment, for your future and everybody else’s future around you.

AA