‘The New Guard’

Neal Beckstedt of Neal Beckstedt Studio

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“My clients homes need to not only look beautiful, but function.   How to achieve that goal is critical to ascertain at the beginning of the project, and constantly kept in mind through to the installation.”

-Neal Beckstedt

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Two weeks before Christmas our Design Editor Carl Lana and I were scurrying up Madison Ave in search of some last minute holiday gifts.  We wandered down the sensational white staircase to the home furnishing shop at Calvin Klein.  After we were finished admiring the ‘devoid of decoration’ spruce (classic CK), I noticed Neal Beckstedt eyeing some porcelain.  Having seen him on design campus, I decided to introduce myself.  I’m a fan of his work, so I asked him to join the ranks of ‘The New Guard’, and he graciously accepted.

We caught up for coffee last week, and chatted about his career, his aesthetic, and his favorite vendors.

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Across The Pond

a review of the London Fall/Winter 2013 runway shows

Mary-Katrantzou1Mary Katrantzou

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Reviewing the London collections has always been a treat for me.  Back in my days as a buyer I could not wait to go to London for fashion week.

The British designers excel in innovative design – and creating new wearable art, and are always at the forefront of new directions in fashion.

For this posting I focus on what I think are the top six collections shown this past week:  WEARABLE garments that sparks conversation, not for being ridiculous, but because the clothes are totally original and beautifully crafted.

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Business & Design: Blogging

6 reasons not to start (or continue writing) a blog

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According to an article on SocialTimes.com, the internet turned 30 on January 1st of this year.  There are opposing opinions, but for the sake of this post, we’ll go with 30 (if for no other reason than it’s a nice round number.)

In that time marketing and advertising have radically changed.  Blogging is the new marketing tool.

Interior designers and design professionals regularly ask me why I blog, and if everyone should start a blog to advance their brand?

After nearly 3 years of researching social media and content marketing, I’ve come up with 6 reasons not to start a blog.  So before you start – or continue writing a blog – you might consider reading this post.

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BAILEY HOUSE CELEBRATES 30 YEARS

Serving the Homeless with HIV/AIDS since 1983

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With the coming of Spring, there are several great charity events worth noting.  In today’s post, I want to talk about Bailey House, an organization founded in 1983, to support and shelter homeless individuals with HIV/AIDS.

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Hillsdale Haven

Master Class with Charles O Schwarz Interior Design

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Charles O. Schwarz Interior Design in House Beautiful, March 2013

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“I love that this house is not fashionable or chic.  This house is about everything that comes in and out of its doors; dogs and cats, flowers and vegetables, family and friends, food and wine.  This is what life is about and it is what my client and I understand keeps the soul and spirit in this house alive.”

-Charles O. Schwarz

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I first discovered Columbia County, New York in 1989.  I’d been invited to spend the weekend at a friends family compound in Canaan, in the northern corner of the county.  Six years later I bought my first house there in Claverack, and restored it to its 1822 glory.  Everyone who’s visited there understands there is something quite magical about Columbia County.

When my friends at House Beautiful told me that a historic Hillsdale House (in the southeastern corner of the county), restored and decorated by Charles O. Schwarz, was being featured in the March issue, I decided to catch up with Charles to talk about the home.  What follows is an excerpt of our conversation.

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New York Fashion Week Fall/Winter 2013

5 collections that rose above, and 1 that fell into a rabbit hole

Ralph Rucci1Ralph Rucci
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In reviewing the collections from this past week, I’ve come up with what I consider to be the top 5 houses, and one totally misguided effort.  This was a season that had no one direction – each designer that excelled had their own distinct vision.  The two prevalent ideas on the runway that I came away with were that dressing had a little more ease to it, and that bold colors were often combined in most unusual ways.  In the end, it all seemed to make sense.

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‘The New Guard’

Lindsey Coral Harper of Lindsey Coral Harper Interior Design

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“I don’t think anyone that has ever seen my work would believe that I’m a minimalist.  I am much more of a maximalist, but I try to draw the line before becoming a hoarder.  What can I say, I love beautiful things!”

-Lindsey Coral Harper

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I keep my ear to the pavement when it comes to interior designers, so when Timothy Brown chatted me up about his friend Lindsey Coral Harper, I decided to investigate.  We met for coffee at her riotously decorated office (I’d call it a gigantic storyboard) earlier this week.

I came away with a clear understanding why she’s the current ‘it-girl’, and perhaps more importantly, why I think she’s going to be important in our industry for some time to come.  We had a convivial chat.  Here’s some of what I learned about this decidedly modern Southern Belle.

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Made in America

Supporting the US economy, maintaining high environmental standards, & committing to conservation

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One of my popular crusades of late is enlisting my industry peers into embracing the “Made In America” stance.  I can’t stress enough the importance of being aware of how each of us can help rebuild our economy.

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