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The No-Rules Approach
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by Christiane Lemieux 



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Entries from October 1, 2010 - October 31, 2010


Trick or Treat

My dear friends,
I want to take this festive day to sincerely thank you for your devout readership and for making the TheDesignerPad's first couple of months a complete success. I hope you're finding it exciting and inspiring — and you enjoy reading it. I'm absolutely having loads of fun gathering the best and most innovative treats out there in the design stratosphere to share with you all. Have a safe and spooky Halloween — and a handful of sweets, from me to you!

Artwork design ©TheDesignerPad


Who's there?

Aren't these adorable? What a fab way to add some whimsy to your entrance door. These fun peephole covers are the perfect disguise for such boring-looking piece of hardware. And on top of it, they're made out of birch wood from sustainably managed forests, making them a great eco-friendly product. I'm sure they'll put a huge happy smile on all those guests knocking at your door.

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Contain yourself

Some of the massive freight containers that pollute our landscape every time we drive by any of our country's many ports, are now seeing better days. They're being recycled into very affordable and innovative living spaces. Container architecture is becoming a hot trend. From having a lonesome purpose in life, these dreadful steel boxes are now becoming small homes, vacation cabins, business and even multi-unit buildings. It's an eco-friendly and a very flexible option to build.

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Now you see it, now you don't

People are living in smaller and smaller spaces, especially here in the Big Apple where square footage is a luxury. Most New Yorkers live in very small apartments and have to be extremely creative to make their space work for them — especially those living in studios. Having guests is a sure thing for those of us living in Gotham, but having a guest room is not often a option. This is why we always have to be in the lookout for smart solutions that will make our lives a little easier

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Soothingly Neutral

Images by William Waldron and Magnus Anesund (below)

From the Fall/Winter 2010 Pantone color report, Oyster Gray is one of the few neutral hues that made the list. This cool, clean and contemporary shade is ideal for home decor since it creates a relaxing and serene ambiance. Be confident when using gray. It works best when keeping a simple palette and restraining the use of contrasting colors. Soft pastels are great compliments, but bright primaries not so much.

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Tasteful compositions

I have to give it up for IKEA for always coming up with new and innovative things for their customers. I'm a big fan of their cool design and clever solutions in everything they do. But their new cookbook titled Hembakat är Bäst —which means “Homemade is Best”— has taken the art of cooking to a new high. The exquisite photography was shot by Carl Kleiner and deliciously styled by Evelina Bratell. The ingredient images for all thirty recipes are truly pieces of art. From the playful compositions to the color schemes, all images are simply eye candy. They're like design mood boards for cooking. Any one of them can easily translate into themes for decorating a room, or at least they could make any kitchen wall sing by just framing them. BTW, you can definitely judge this book by its yummy cover.

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It's about time

Image byDavid Prince

The daylight is waning, the leaves are changing and there’s a crispness in the air. It’s unmistakable that time of year when the days are getting shorter and soon we'll be turning our clocks back one hour. BUMMER! But this year you can do in vogue with any of these stunning time pieces. I was seduced by them all. They don't just tell time anymore. Now wall clocks have become a very important part of our home decor. Don't let time pass by without getting one.

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Into the woods

If you're adventurous at heart and always wanted to know what it feels like to sleep in the middle of the woods, now you can head to Sweden's boreal forest and stay at the magical Treehotel. Inspired by the film documentary “Trädälskaren” (Treelover) by Jonas Selberg Augustsen, the seven room-size structures are if nothing works of art. They were built and are run daily with ecological values in mind. The Bird's Nest, one of my favorites, plays with the contrast of a rough exterior and a very slick modern interior. And if you're wondering, people can access it through a retractable staircase.

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