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The No-Rules Approach
to Interior Design
by Christiane Lemieux 



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An Unexpected Find

The Bowery is one of the hottest neighborhoods in Manhatttan right now. It's known for its fashionable boutiques, restaurants, vibrant nightlife and some of the trendiest design hotels in the city. While strolling around the neighborhood on a Saturday afternoon, I was taken by the beauty and colors of this decopage-like mural, above, by Shepard Fairey (the same artist that did the HOPE poster for Obama's 2008 presidential campaign). I never expected  it would be part of the sleek and contemporary structure belonging to the Cooper Square Hotel — designed by New York-based architect Carlos Zapata with interiors by Italian designer Antonio Citterio. Of course, it made me want to go in and snoop around to see what it looked like.

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Urban Totems

I was captivated by the alluring beauty of these images by Parisian photographer Alain Delorme. Taken in the streets of a highly colored Shanghai, Totems depict local men perched on their bikes or pulling a cart stacked to the top with a variety of household items. From chairs and empty cabinets to cardboard boxes, these traveling piles soar like moving sculptures through a city of hope and change. So I hope you enjoy these magical photos that show the urban side of Shanghai through an artistic lense.

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Fine Dining

Historically the dining room consists of a large table, most commonly rectangular, with two armchairs at the end and an even number of armless chairs along the sides. Although the family dining experience has somewhat changed and the traditional dining room per se has evolved, it's still and important space in our home. Whether grand or small, it is a room we must certainly not neglect. For many it's where they gather every day for family dinners, and for others it's a place for formal dining with guests or on special occasions and holidays. Having said that, here's a glimpse at the work of the very accomplished lifestyle photographer Emily Gilbert, who has beautifully captured the essence of these exquisite dining spaces. An inspiration overload. Have a designful weekend!

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Building Blocks

If you've always dreamt of owning real estate in New York City this might be your opportunity to do so. Well, al least figuratively. You can Build Your Block with Patrick Chirico's collection of pillows printed with images of iconic Brooklyn buildings. Become an urban planner by picking and choosing as many buildings and colors that best match your decor to give your home a touch of Gotham. His inspiration came from the delis, brownstones and abandoned buildings he used to walk by in his neighborhood in Brooklyn. The best part of it is that you can get your hands on one of  these hot properties without having to get a mortgage and pay sky high maintenance fees.


Living In Harmony 

I guess you might have noticed my weakness for everything Midcentury. It is a style rich in design that never gets old. No matter its age, a Midcentury piece of furniture will always look current and will fit seamlessly in any decor. That's why this exquisite flat renovated and designed by Mikel Irastorza had me at hello. He's known for injecting harmony, balance and sensitivity into his projects by fusing the old with the new and adding sophistication in every space he designs. The guest bedroom has a very welcoming feeling with its soft tones and delicious textures perfect for a midday nap. His use of pendant lights over the nightstands is a great idea to keep them clutter-free, and serve as the perfect frame for the bold photograph by Korean artist Kyungwoo Chun that hangs over the bed.

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Home Contained

One of the most read and popular posts I've published so far is one about container living. As a matter of fact, it is one of my favorites since it shows how something so raw and unattractive as shipping containers can be transformed into beautiful living spaces. So when I spotted this amazing home I didn't think twice about sharing it with you. This beauty, in Kansas City, Missouri, is actually a prototype conceived and designed by former toy accessory designer Debbie Glassberg in hopes of making container houses an affordable alternative. The Contained Home was built mostly by putting together five metal containers, creating 2,600 square feet of unbelievable living and entertaining space.

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My top 10: Umbrella Stands

The forecast in New York calls for rain showers for most of this week, a sign Spring has finally arrived. So I thought this would be the perfect time to dedicate a post to my favorite umbrella stands. There's no need to have dripping and soggy parasols sitting by your entry door when you can find so many chic and fun stands out there. Besides adding character to your foyer, these containers will also help protect your beloved floors and keep them puddle-free. Any favorites?

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Divide And Conquer

While looking for different ideas to divide the space in a studio apartment, I found these phenomenal panels by German company Koziol. They're an innovative and unusual concept of organic-shaped polycarbonate tiles that link to each other to form a superb decorative partition. These dividers offer a kaleidoscope of possibilities and allow you to design panels according to your cravings and needs. You can choose from a variety of shapes and colors to create a division of any size. They're a very original and adaptable solution to separate spaces in your home without blocking the view. If you're drooling over these and think you have the perfect place for them, you can buy them here and here. Enjoy your Saturday!

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