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A Digital Boutique From a Hudson Valley Hotel
Since the Maker Hotel opened its doors in Hudson, N.Y., in August, it’s become a wish-list destination for locals and New York City dwellers alike. Founded by Lev Glazman and Alina Roytberg of the beauty brand Fresh, and the hospitality expert Damien Janowicz, it spans four historic downtown buildings and has 11 private rooms, a cafe, a lounge, a restaurant, a gymnasium and, now, an online boutique. The Maker Shop, a natural expansion of the empire, features a collection of home décor selected, if not designed, by Glazman and Roytberg. “It’s our love of design, and our curated point of view of interiors and colors, that we’ve always wanted to share with our guests beyond our rooms,” says Glazman. The shop’s wares, many versions of which furnish the hotel, are produced by artisans near and far — from a handblown decanter set made in collaboration with the Hudson Valley’s BowGlass Works (and available in soft gray, deep red and forest green) to a Louis XVI-style steel writing desk handcrafted in France. But perhaps the grandest offering is the Frida bed, which can also be found in the hotel’s Gardener suite. Stately and sophisticated, the wrought-iron sleigh bed was designed in partnership with the architect Kipp Edick, forged using traditional artisanal techniques and paired with upholstered head- and footboards to achieve an heirloom feel. Topped with one of the shop’s signature cashmere throws, which are available in solid neutral colors and checked patterns, and are made in Northern Italy on vintage looms by Prïvate 02 04, it’s the picture of unbridled comfort — and will make staying in feel just as luxurious as getting away. shop.themaker.com.
Immersive Spaces to Escape the Workplace
One of my peripheral pastimes this year has been waffling between missing the office, where I used to spend a majority of my time, and actively hoping I’ll never have to go back. But if and when we do return to those glassy corporate towers, I wonder if or how things will be different. The design collective Office of Things — co-founded in 2015 by a group of architects spread out across the U.S. — has been grappling with the existential questions of office life since even before the pandemic began. For the last few years, it’s been investigating how to create a restorative environment within the workplace, which has culminated in a series of meditation chambers, called the Immersive Spaces Series, that were constructed last year inside the Bay Area offices of YouTube and Google. Designed predominantly for single occupants, these rooms are sound and light environments that offer a kind of sensorial and psychological retreat, be it from harsh fluorescent lighting or the sound of an obnoxious co-worker. The firm wanted to “create a space that sets you away in a different world, and to use that experience to create calm and refuge,” says Lane Rick, the project lead, who runs the New York chapter of Office of Things with Can Vu Bui. Before the arrival of Covid-19, I might have dismissed this as Silicon Valley indulgence, but as I try to conceive of returning to a building packed with people and demands of all kinds — well, let’s just say I hope my employer is paying attention. oo-t.co.
A French Artist’s Papier-Mâché Mushrooms
Upon coming across Mimi de Biarritz’s whimsical artwork at the now-shuttered store Brocante de la Reine Victoria several years ago, the British designer Kit Kemp, known for her lavishly decorated interiors and line of boutique Firmdale hotels, became an instant admirer of the artist. Since then, Kemp has incorporated the cheerful oddities coming out of de Biarritz’s studio, located, as was the erstwhile shop, in the French city that shares her name, into a number of her projects. From the chandeliers fashioned from seashells to the giant papier-mâché beetles with all the detail of entomologically pinned specimens, “her artwork is a mainstay and talking point in both my home and hotels,” says Kemp. But it’s the artist’s terrarium-enclosed papier-mâché mushrooms, which sprung up earlier this year at the designer’s seventh-floor pop-up in New York City’s Bergdorf Goodman — a shop offering seasonal baubles and home décor — that have most recently caught my eye. Commissioned by Kemp, these one-of-a-kind creations, perched on beds of papier-mâché earth or moss, are hand-painted by the artist in chartreuse, aquamarine, periwinkle and other vibrant hues and housed under glass domes of varying sizes. The results are infectiously joyful, and are poised to play a scene-stealing role on tea trays and mantles alike this holiday season. From $250, Kit Kemp at Bergdorf Goodman, 754 Fifth Avenue, New York, N.Y. 10019.
Home-Office Accessories Crafted From Leather
When Melissa Morris launched Métier, her line of handmade leather bags, in 2017, it was because she wanted an exquisitely crafted tote that was beautiful and functional, with a place for everything from her lipstick to her laptop. “Before 2020, our bags were our mobile offices,” she says. “Now, that’s all changed, so it made sense to apply that same level of attention to pieces for a home office.” And so, she has released a small offering of items specifically designed to make your desk more inviting — and less cluttered. They include collapsible boxes, inspired by origami, in varying sizes — perfect for concealing chargers, Post-it notes and stamps — which snap into place with magnets. There’s also a series of notebooks, a collaboration with the 135-year-old English paper maker G.F Smith. The journals, which come in three sizes, comprise silky pages fashioned from upcycled coffee cups and enclosed in black or Art Deco-patterned leather cases made by a father-and-daughter duo just outside of Florence, Italy. Inside, there are holders for business cards and an iPad or small laptop, while under the strap, there’s a discreet pen loop. “I wanted to create a piece that you can intuitively tuck all your papers in and that just sits neatly off to the side,” says Morris. “But it can also effortlessly slide into a bag for the days when we’re back on the go.” metierlondon.com.
Shearling Accents for Your Winter Wardrobe
This is the time of year when I usually dust off my trusty shearling coat in preparation for the dropping temperatures (its furry texture has kept me toasty through New York’s coldest months). But this season, a handful of designers have given me more reasons to love the plushy material, incorporating it into a variety of cozy, practical accessories that will still manage to elevate any winter look. This snug, caramel-colored Dries Van Noten tote, for one, is so soft and pillowy you might be tempted to use it as a headrest — and so cavernous you could easily slip a change of shoes inside. These shearling pouches by Daniel Lee at Bottega Veneta, with their sweeping tassels, are just as dramatic as the floor-length fringe coat the designer debuted them alongside earlier this year. The young designer Jingjing Fan, meanwhile, who has had a cult following ever since the 2015 launch of her accessories brand, Elleme, offers an array of jewel-colored shearling bags in fun shapes, like the Baozi, named after the Chinese word for dumpling and adorned with a hand-stitched loop handle. And while shearling slippers are generally reserved for the indoors, the California-based brand Jenni Kayne’s new clog, which features a cork sole and a shearling upper, can be worn just about anywhere. This winter might end up feeling extra long, but that’s all the more reason to surround ourselves with comfort and warmth.
RiRa, a New Line of Artful Home Objects
In a year centered around domestic life, the stylist and Dutch Vogue contributing editor Gijsje Ribbens found that dressing up had lost its appeal. And so, during Amsterdam’s first lockdown last spring, she teamed up with her friend Bart Ramakers, a Dutch fashion agent, who has helped launch brands including Vetements and Halpern, to dress up their homes instead. Thus, RiRa, an interiors concept line that debuts this week with a selection of limited-edition objects, was born. For part of the collection — the pieces of which were all designed and made in the Netherlands and Belgium — the designer Sabine Marcelis, known for her Candy Cube installations for Celine stores, has created a series of whimsical mirrors liberally splashed with vibrantly hued resins. From the industrial design duo Muller Van Severen, there’s a sculptural chair made in collaboration with the fashion brand Kassl and inspired by the latter’s signature pillow bags. And Vincent de Rijk, the architectural materials innovator who worked with Rem Koolhaas’s Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA) on Prada’s New York flagship, has created the Liquidish, a hyper-glossy epoxy-resin bowl whose playful form resembles something between a prophylactic and a red blood cell (it already has a waiting list). “You can love it, or you can think it’s very ugly, but I like that,” says Ramakers of the collection. “It’s outspoken.” shoprira.com.