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The No-Rules Approach
to Interior Design
by Christiane Lemieux 



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Entries in Glasses (8)



I'm always fascinated to learn how designers come about their wonderful creations. A few weeks back I visited my dear friend and talented designer Deborah Ehrlich at her gorgeous Hudson Valley farmhouse (which I featured here) and had a glimpse at one of her new pieces — the Crystal Jelly Jar Shade. Although she's mostly known for her paper thin, clear-as-water, and absolutely flawless crystal glassware, Deborah thought it would be cool to venture into the world of lighting. Her inspiration came from the ingenuity of farmers who back in the days transformed basic jelly jars into impromptu shades for their lighting fixtures. Her classy version is meticulously hand blown in Sweden and is a testament of the purity and delicacy of her work. So guess what? To celebrate the start of its production Deborah is having a launch sale on through this Thursday (hurry, time is runnin out). The lamp iincludes the ceiling fixture with porcelain base, patinaed brass fittings and the crystal jelly jar shade. I'm beyond-words thrilled to see the final product come to life.

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I'm totally in sync with sustainable design, and love coming across beautiful products and companies, like Slow design, that make an honest effort to preserve our planet. They use the savoir faire and dexterity of Tuscan artisans to recover, re-invent and repurpose objects and give them new life in beautiful and stylish ways. One of my favorites is their gorgeous Vetro collection—a series of containers and lamps designed with recycled glass bottles and hand-turned beech woodwork. It's simply exquisite.

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Today, I thought I'd give you a short break from beautiful interiors and wow you with these phenomenally witty, sculptural images by Stockholm-based photographer Philip Karlberg. An idea that started a few months back materialized in this crazy fun project for shelter publication Plaza Magazine. Overall, it took him six days and about 1,200 wooden sticks to recreate six ingenious portraits of some classic sunglasses wearers like Johnny Depp, Jackie O, Karl Lagerfeld, Lady Gaga, John Belushi and Steve McQueen (from top to bottom). Aren't they amazing? Bravo to Philip for his patience and imagination.

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I've never been a big fan of camping, mostly because of the allergic reaction I have to mosquito bites. Trust me, it's not pretty. But I'm not sure what's worse, the allergy or covering myself with stinky mosquito repellant. Hence my crush on this sustainable and non-toxic bug repellent Anti-Fly Sphere by Mexican designer José de la O. Taking inspiration from the dangling water-filled plastic bags found in markets in the streets of urban Mexico to keep flies away, Jose took this technique one step further and designed this beautiful and slick glass sphere. A very chic way to enjoy a bug-free day outdoors. Hmmm, maybe there still hope for a camping trip this summer after all.

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A Twisted Top

Who would've thought that a bottle stopper could become more than what it was intended to be? Of course, I would not expect any less from the revolutionary Italian brand Seletti, known for its innovative and whimsical take on everyday household objects. For instance, take Appo, this quirky and rather unusual bottle stopper designed by Carlo Trevisani with an enlarged cork platter that doubles as a tray and a great centerpiece. This is crazy cool. Happy Friday!!

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A Clear Solution

Why drink out of a boring plastic water bottle when you can do it in style with this slick and dashing glass alternative? The Tkaro is a transportable wide-mouth glass bottle that comes with its own protective stainless steel cover. Its sustainability goes far: besides helping the environment by reducing the use of disposable plastic bottles, it is also made of recycled glass. You can even make it personal by having it custom engraved with your name or whatever you desire. It is perfect to take your drinks on the road without leaving your coolness at home. Drink up!

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A Table To Inspire

Image © Gemma Comas

Last week I got a sweet email from one of my readers in search of some inspiration for table settings. She loves to entertain A LOT and is always looking for fresh ideas to style her tables. Luckily, she likes to mix things up - French, modern, floral… name it. It's funny she asked me since I also enjoy playing with my table settings. Although I'm more of a white-palette kind of guy, I often find myself advising clients to be adventurous when entertaining. I think it's always fun to have a variety of styles, shapes, colors, textures and heights to play with. Your tables should always reflect your style and it's ideal to start with a theme or inspiration — this will dictate the direction to take and give your table a cohesive look. So I've put together five themes to show you how imaginative you can get when dressing up your tables. Remember, it's always better to start with all your options and then edit down, but the key is to have a ball. So my dear Monica, I hope these vignettes will inspire you to let your creative juices flow. Happy entertaining!

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My top 10: Champagne Flutes

Can you believe there's only five days left of 2010? The new year it's almost here and we must welcome it with a fabulous glass of bubbly in hand to toast its arrival — definitely my favorite part of New Year's Eve. This is the time of year when the whole world cheers in unison for hopes of prosperity and happiness. And there's nothing like a stylish champagne flute to do it with flair. Here are my picks for some of the most unique and beautiful ones, including mine from the Ittalla Arnes Collection — I simply adore them. Cheers!

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