Inspiration from the 2014 Architectural Digest Home Show in NYC

The AD Home Show 2014

Interiors

Every year Architectural Digest hosts the home show at Pier 94 in Manhattan. It’s one of the most inspirational design events that I attend, and yesterday didn’t disappoint me at all! This is where you find the newest products by some of the best designers in the world. Though I am gonna take a minute to boast that NYC local designers have a heavy presence in the world of design and I am proud to be friends with many of these talents. Nice Job NYC Designers!!!

Basically I thought I might blog a bunch of cool pictures that I took at the show. I think I should let everyone know that the show has 2 sections to it. The first being larger companies who produce everything from unique tiles for floors and walls to refrigerators, furniture, fire places…. you get the idea. These are all the new lines that are soon to be in a store near you.

The second section is called “made” and it consists of unique artisan’s that produce decor, lighting, wall paper and other items which probably will not be in a store near you. But if you read our blog you would probably love to have some of these creations in your own home.  That is why I will try to make sure to list some of the names of the companies at the end of this post so that you might check out their sites and beautify your spaces, but you can always go to the Architectural digest site to find a list of exhibitors.

The photos are primarily from an exhibit area where interior designers use samples of products from different exhibitors to create luxurious rooms.

That's me if front of this chandelier bursting with Cherry Blossoms!

That’s me in front of this chandelier bursting with Cherry Blossoms!

My Hubby and our friend Moshe Bursuker in his lighting exhibit.

My Hubby and our friend Moshe Bursuker in his lighting exhibit.

www.moshebursuker.com

Cherry Blossom Chandelier Room at AD Home Show 2014

Cherry Blossom Chandelier Room at AD Home Show 2014

Who needs wall paper if you collect postcards?

Who needs wall paper if you collect postcards?

Close up of post card wall! Love it!

Close up of post card wall! Love it!

The retro look was so eye catching!

The retro look was so eye-catching!

Another Beautiful room design

Another Beautiful room design

close up of patterns and textures in the room

The layering of different patterns and textures really made this room so inviting.

Pretty and Elegant

Pretty and Elegant

I loves the backs of the chairs in this room and the color scheme was so soft and pretty. The portraits on the walls were super bazaar half man half woman images.

Awesome table with moss growing down the center of it.

Awesome table with moss growing down the center of it.

I would love to have this as a picnic table. One of the coolest things is the way it is sunken into the ground.

This was such an imaginative design!

This was such an imaginative design!

Cool video images projected onto the walls and having all the different colored chairs was so playful.

Cool video images projected onto the walls and having all the different colored chairs was so playful.

This was one of my favorites, so space aged!

This was one of my favorites, so space aged!

One of the grandest displays in the entire show!

One of the grandest displays in the entire show!

Hope that you enjoyed the behind the scenes look of the 2014 Architectural Digest Home show. I am gonna list and link to some things that I thought were very cool and if you get a chance check them out. Everyone loves unique things and many of the people making this work are emerging talents or lifelong artists from the U.S.  As someone who understands the etiquette of artist exhibitions I did not take photos of people’s work in their booths but rather talked to the artists and took their contact info so that I could share with you the websites of the things I liked!

Big Chill refrigerators www.bigchill.com

Creative Touch Rugs www.creativetouchrugs.com

William Couig www.furthurdesign.com

Custom Furniture Studio www.johnson3llc.com

Beautiful Wallpaper www.hyggeandwest.com

The Chair Market www.thechairmarket.com

French Accents www.farugs.com

Cheers,

Karen

What Is So Special About Swarovski Crystal

images-1

Who is Swarovski Crystal Company?

Swarovski crystal is a brand name and is regarded as the finest quality manufacturer of cut crystal.  The company which is located in Austria began developing machine cut crystal in 1895 under the name A. Kosmann, Daniel Swartz & Co. later changed to K.S. & Co.  Armand Kosmann was the financial backer to the new company while Daniel Swartz was the man who  figured out how to cut and manufacture  a superior product while simultaneously rocking one of the greatest hipster mustaches before hipster was even a thing : ).

Swarovski Daniel 1895

Daniel Swarovski 1895

As people began to recognize the quality and inventiveness their designs the company grew, building generations of collectors as well as providing a resource for the finest independent designers in the world.  We don’t know why, but Daniel later changed his last name to  Swarovski and that would be what the company goes by to this day.

 You will find Swarovski crystal being used in everything from purses, hats, shoes, wedding gowns, jewelry and chandeliers additionally the company produces figurines, ornaments and home decor.  Many of the worlds leading designers in all mediums use the Swarovski company’s products including Christian Louboutin, Vera Wang, Giorgio Armani, Michael Kors…. I mean the list goes on and on and the price of their work hikes every time you find Swarovski in their products.  Take for instance Stuart Weitzman’s 50/50 boots that regularly sell for around $600. The newest 50/50 boot celebrating their 20th anniversary on gilt was encrusted with Swarovski Crystal and commanded a $10,000 price tag because of it.

swarovski boots, stuart weitzman, 50/50,

$10,000 50/50 boots

Oh I forgot to mention one of the coolest things made with Swarovski Crystal is the Star on top of the Christmas tree in Rockefeller Center!!!!

images

So now that we know a brief little history on the company lets dip into the actual product they produce and why it has such an allure.  Different from natural earth crystals mined from regions around the globe, man-made crystal is essentially a form of glass.  Crystal in this case refers to a glass that is produced with a concentration of lead in the chemical formula.  Lead assists in creating a glass which is clearer and more sparkly.  Referred to as the refractive index, it is a way of measuring the degree to which a substance separates light into its full color spectrum or the prism effect which is about 13% greater than normal glass.  The lead in the glass also creates slightly more weight to the crystal and believe it or not actually maintains a colder temperature to the pieces (by holding glass in 1 hand and crystal in the other there is a noticeable difference).  Quick disclaimer that lead within a crystal will not harm you by wearing it, now if you decide to chew and eat them this is a totally different story in which I think the least of your worries being the lead in the crystal.

Through out the existence of the Swarovski Company they continuously develop new colors, shapes and facet techniques introducing new lines of their elements for designers to use.  The new direction of the company is to produce only Non-leaded crystal as they strive to create glass formulas that have a similar look and clarity.  These pieces are often less symmetrical and just a bit funkier then the vintage crystal.  But as someone who works primarily with the vintage crystal there is definitely a difference on how clean and crisp the edges are on the older material.  I guess that’s what we like about them and why we spend so much time trying to acquire unused quantities of the vintage crystal.  Now here are some examples of the Newest jewelry collection for spring 2014, I personally LOVE this color combination and you will find me wearing this winter,spring,summer and fall!

jewelry collection by Karen Curtis NYC

Swarovski crystal bracelet by Karen Curtis NYC

Crystal earrings by Karen Curtis NYC

triple drop earrings all swarovski crystal Karen Curtis

We hope you’ve enjoyed a brief history on the Swarovski Company as well as a look into what Swarovski has provided designers like ourselves to accomplish in our fields.

-Karen

SWAROVSKI CRYSTAL CHANDELIER TIPS

 

 

Image

It is kind of funny how things work out.  In 2005, my 5th year in business I found myself spending months looking for the perfect colorful chandelier for my NYC apartment. I found shapes that I loved, colors that stood out to me but couldn’t find the complete package of vintage/traditional elegance mixed with a little flare, style, color and quality. It really never occurred to me that this seemingly fun task would be draining both my time and patience.  That is when I took matters into my own hands, instead of searching for the best chandelier I began looking for the best elements to a chandelier.  I acquired a few of the most amazing original antique frames from high end vintage and antique stores, pieces that had history( no reproductions) frames that had sexy curvature and quality materials like ornate brass and venetian glass.  

Image

Now I had something to work with so I had all of the wiring redone with up to code antique looking cords, keeping with the feel of the piece.  It was time to come up with interesting color arrangements and bring to life what I had been searching for.  There is no denying that I know a lot about crystal and crystal quality, and for my personal chandelier I was not going to use anything but the best crystal available.  By using my resources at Swarovski I started to build a selection of all the colored STRASS Swarovski crystals in a variety of different shapes and sizes.  I let my imagination go wild and made some really cool chandeliers!  

As friends would come over they would comment on the lamps and chandeliers, next thing I knew they were asking me to design 1 for them, or telling a friend to contact me. I had developed my own style of chandelier…. ECO Friendly by using antique frames, super colorful, and the highest quality by using only STRASS Swarovski crystal. Next thing I know the chandelier/home interior part of my company was born!

Image

TIPS FOR CHOOSING THE RIGHT CHANDELIER FOR YOU!

Over the years I have gained some insight into the right size chandelier for certain areas of your home.  First off, there is no restrictions on where to hang a chandelier!  The traditional areas i.e. over the dining room table, in an entryway, top of a stairwell are great places.  In these circumstances it is best to take the length of the room in feet + the width of the room in feet and try and keep the diameter of the chandelier to the that size in Inches.  EXAMPLE BELOW:

Image

In addition to the size of the correct chandelier it is important to hang it properly.  So over a dining room table, don’t go lower then 30″ from the top of the table…. this is a great height so that the piece is obviously the focal point of the room but will not interfere with conversations of guests at dinner.

FOR NON-TRADITIONAL PLACES….

• BATHROOM- nothing is more spa-like than having a chandelier in the bathroom, we suggest hanging it a minimum of 7 ft. off the floor and ideally place it over the bathtub for a very luxurious effect!

• CORNER OF THE ROOM-  Corners are usually forgotten, we don’t think they should be!  This can help a room feel larger by creating artwork in the ceiling corner and not to mention the amazing shadowing effect you will have on the 2 walls and ceiling.  You can hang this chandelier where ever you think it looks good, because a corner of a room never really gets any foot traffic it will not interfere with moving around the room.

 Chandeliers are an opportunity to place a floating piece of artwork in your home.  The right chandelier should reflect your personality and most of all make you happy to see it and own it.  Don’t treat a chandelier as just a light, treat it as a masterpiece for your decor!