Defining design – Biophilia

Friday, June 30th, 2017

Originally brought about by 20th century biologists, Edward O. Wilson in the 60’s, Biophilia is a theory that focuses on human’s innate attraction to nature. It is also one of the most powerful influences on sustainable design and modern architecture. Biophilic design affiliates nature with physical dwellings, blending man-made boundaries and focusing on those aspects of nature that are pivotal to health, fitness, and well-being. It goes beyond plants and greenery and into a scientific proof that the presence of nature and aspects of the natural world contribute to higher productivity, faster healing and better learning as well as a more thriving human habitat.

Biophilic design translates into a variety of elements that are used by architects, designers, and engineers. Frank Lloyd Wright, was famous for biophilic design, an example of which is the Fallingwater house that is situated next to a waterfall and is actually integrated into its surroundings.

Fallingwater house by Frank Lloyd Wright

Fallingwater house by Frank Lloyd Wright

Another advocate of biophilic design is Toyo Ito, a Japanese architect that designs for Horm among others and is famous for his Ripples collection. Featuring a bench, dining table and stools, Ripple collection integrates five different solid woods into a seamless surface, carved and hand-finished to produce a rippling effect of water.

Ripples collection by Toyo Ito for Horm

Ripples collection by Toyo Ito for Horm

Ripples bench by Toyo Ito for Horm

Ripples bench by Toyo Ito for Horm

Defining design – bachelor pad

Thursday, June 29th, 2017

A term first coined in the 50’s in United Kingdom and widely commercialized by early James Bond films, is a living space occupied by a career-minded, unmarried and highly cosmopolitan gentleman. While not big in size, the bachelor pad is perfectly suited for entertaining and courtship as well as smartly designed to accommodate common male hobbies and activities. The stereotypical American version of the British bachelor pad went through a style downgrade when it landed on our shores and was widely associated with messy, poorly decorate spaces until the term and the space started to evolve again into a stylish, highly perceived living quarters of successful men.

Today, the bachelor pad is fitted with the best that modern design has to offer while being sophisticated and comfortable. Decorated with intense tones like grey, dark blue and black, the bachelor pad will typically include features high-tech equipment, lots of leather, metal and hard materials like stone.

An example of what the modern bachelor pad represents today could be seen in 2016 advertising campaign by Bonaldo which focused on the cosmopolitan male and featured its star dining tables – Ax, Big and Amond. The setting, photographed in the Pirelli Tower in Milan, is subliminally suggestive of high fashion, modern architecture and successful career, all of which are symbols of a prestigious lifestyle, elegance and innovation.

2016 advertising campaign by Bonaldo featuring Ax table

Ax dining table in 2016 advertising campaign by Bonaldo

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Understanding Upholstery – Linen

Wednesday, June 28th, 2017

Maybe because its summertime, or maybe because it’s such a smooth surface, linen is certainly earning its place among the most popular fabrics used in modern furniture design. It comes to mind almost immediately when we see sunshine or sand and is closely associated with lush and comfort, as well as wrinkles. Linen’s fabric seniority is not uncalled-for as it is one of the most ancient fabrics, used by Egyptians for mummification. While it is a true classic, linen is definitely a popular choice when it comes to upholstering a modern sofa, bed or dining chair. It’s soft and smooth with a touch of sheen as it is full of cooling qualities all because of its flax plant origin. Linen is also very durable, organic, and hypoallergenic but lacks elasticity which explains the wrinkles.

While many associate linen with bed sheets and table cloths, the Toolate bed by Bonaldo incorporates a cushy silhouette that along with its linen upholstery enhances its delineated softness and also gives it an unpretentious look. The Avarit collection by Giuseppe Vigano is another example of linen upholstery that happens to also be by Bonaldo and gives off an invitation to lounge with its linen upholstery and down-feather cushions.

Toolate platform bed by Bonaldo

Toolate platform bed by Bonaldo

Avarit collection by Giuseppe Vigano for Bonaldo

Avarit collection by Giuseppe Vigano for Bonaldo

Aptly named the Touch chair by Costantini Pietro, it is a dining chair that was designed with linen upholstery in mind to purposely combine understated look with a dressy silhouette to create a sense of relaxed formality perfect for the beach house as well as for anything that has to do with French country decor.

Touch chair by Costantini Pietro

Touch chair by Costantini Pietro

4 Modern Kitchen Trends For 2017

Tuesday, June 27th, 2017

If you are planning a kitchen renovation in time for the holidays, we have your 4 biggest trends for 2017 that will help make your new modern kitchen space become the heart of the home, a comfortable space for entertaining or preparing dinner for your family.

OPEN CONCEPT
While open kitchen is not completely a new trend nor is it a layout suitable for everyone, it is a trend that is not going anywhere soon and is actually based entirely on the lifestyle of family gatherings and entertaining as well as on the modern notion of an airier, lighter living centered around casual lifestyle. An open concept kitchen is definitely attractive but can also be a source of “domino-effect” yielding fluid aesthetics across the living and dining spaces. So choose color palette that will be easily carried beyond the kitchen or from the living space, into the kitchen.

Modern kitchen featuring an open layout

PATTERN
Gone are the days of extreme uniformity when it comes to kitchen surfaces and finishes, as patterns are becoming exceedingly prevalent in kitchen design. Trendy patterns help break long rows of cabinets and tall monochromatic cupboards while at the same time introducing an opportunity to be bold and creative. While patterned cabinetry may not be your cup of tea, back-splash, floors, or the island may be a great place to add playfulness and visual depth as well as appliance paneling. Trotter kitchen by Porcelanosa is a great example of patterned island and a few different finishes for the cabinets and appliance panels.

Trotter kitchen by Porcelanosa

METALLICS
Brass, steel, copper and bronze are no longer considered out of style as metallic surfaces and finishes have made their way back to modern interiors. While brass, bronze and copper bring a warmer touch without undermining the glitzy nature of modern design, other favorites like chrome, black chrome and stainless steel help bridge wooden surfaces with ultra-contemporary style. Leading Italian kitchen brands like Varenna use an entirely steel island in the Artex collection to blend bronze glass and wooden surfaces. Read More

Thoughts of summer and our summer-must haves that can be used year round

Monday, June 26th, 2017

Summer is finally here, at least in terms of season if not in matter of temperatures. Vacations have been planned and frequent parties by the pool or backyard barbecues are on the weekend schedule. But while little time will be spent indoors, the home will inadvertently be the hub of hustle and bustle. Here are our favorite summertime furniture must-haves that are bound to add utility and a sense of style to the outdoors but can also be used inside all year round.

TheDuck by Alessandro Busana for Bonaldo is an eccentric little end table that offers a pop of color and a convenient place to put a drink or a plate. It is an amazing conversation piece for indoor or outdoor use and also comes as an illuminated version.

TheDuck by Alessandro Busana for Bonaldo

TheDuck by Alessandro Busana for Bonaldo

TheDuck by Alessandro Busana for Bonaldo

TheDuck by Alessandro Busana for Bonaldo

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