Luxury in Contemporary Design

Thoughtful and provoking contemporary design of luxurious private residences in California has been made to look easy by John Finton of Finton Construction. Recently, Brizo sent to me John Finton’s book “California Luxury Living, A Private Tour”  to review.  Without exception, I found it an easy book to summarize as it overflowed cover to cover with drool worthy photography of a selection of the builder’s outstanding residential designs in California. Lucky California!

john finton book cover

John Finton and Finton Construction’s work has been featured in multiple publications, platforms and has received numerous accolades. However, from a designer’s standpoint, the most important accolade(s) that an Interior Designer or Builder can receive are those of his or her client(s) which is quite evident here.  The well written yet brief introductions/chapters give the reader a clear sense of what each project entailed. The construction of these magnificent homes is truly inspirational and worthy of your attention.

What really stood out to me as I perused the colorful pages of this beautiful book, was the remarkable talent displayed in the execution of the full gamut of design/build. From the ultra contemporary to a modernist French Provincial to a beach home and even some historic renovation, the variety is definitely there.  This confirms that talented designers and builders can design and build well, regardless of the style, successfully. It takes vision.

Embedded below is John Finton’s self narrated YouTube video.  Opening shots will help you grasp the enormity of the design/build projects this company takes on.

One thing is for sure, you will have difficulty finding the page numbers listed in the Table of Contents due to the extraordinarily high number of full page photographs. To sum it up in a word, LUXURY. I recommend this book for every avid design lover.

This post sponsored in part by Brizo. The views and opinions expressed here are totally those of Chatti Patti Talks Design.
 
Thanks for stopping by. Be sure to check back as there’s some great things in the works at Patti Johnson Interiors!

 

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Identify #Antique Furnishings

The Dictionary defines Antique as:

“antique [ænˈtiːk] n

1. (Fine Arts & Visual Arts / Antiques)

a.  a decorative object, piece of furniture, or other work of art created in an earlier period, that is collected and valued for its beauty, workmanship, and age
b.  (as modifier) an antique shop
2. (Fine Arts & Visual Arts / Antiques) any object made in an earlier period
3. (Fine Arts & Visual Arts / Art Terms) the. the style of ancient art, esp Greek or Roman art, or an example of it”

In the Home Interiors, Design and Furniture world, antiques are most often classified by their age and characteristics, age being of 100 years or more. Items that are not that old are often considered  ‘Classics”. So, with that in mind, what makes wood furniture of 100 years old or more valuable? Primarily the origin, handcrafted or workmanship, the artisan or woodworker, the condition and the type of material, i.e. rare species of wood and of course, the finish.

Educating yourself with the world of antiques prior to venturing out and investing would be highly recommended! Good ways to do this is by visiting your local library where you should be able to find extensive information to read up on or even take a class at your local community college or just spend time at antique shows learning by speaking with the vendors. As a designer, I encourage my clients to invest in one or more antiques. Antique pieces can be  assimilated into almost any type of decor when done properly and scale and proportion are considered.

A basic and primary characteristic of a genuine antique furnishing would be dovetailed drawers; devoid of modern nails, and screws.

A drawer with only a few dovetail joints, with the ‘pins’ at the top and bottom being narrower than the dovetail (part in between) indicate a hand made joint as shown above.

Notice in this picture that the joints are all uniform in the drawer corner shown above depicting machine cut joinery.

In addition to the method of construction, the type of wood also makes a big difference when identifying authentic antique furnishings. Oak was broadly used prior to the 1700’s, however after 1700 and on; walnut and mahogany woods were commonly used. American antiques were commonly crafted from pine as it was very plentiful and equally easy to work with. Higher quality antique pieces were constructed with walnut, mahogany or even maple and cherry woods.  Genuine antiques are rarely perfectly cut due to the hand crafted nature whereas a reproduction will be precise and symmetrical as a result of  the process of machinery. If you were to investigate the wood closely and were able to determine the saw cuts, you can assume hand cut or circular saw cut which will help you date the item. Circular saws and machine cutting for furniture came along around 1860, making even a machine crafted piece an antique that still falls into the age category of being more than 100 years old. However, this serves to increase the demand for hand crafted pieces causing them to be more sought after and valuable!

I hope you enjoyed your little Antiques 101, check back soon for more on Antiques. If you have a question you would like answered, please submit it below!

Happy Hunting!

 

Collaborate to Build a Brand~

Brands Do it.

Designers Do it.

Politicians Do it. (sometimes)

Celebrities do it.

You Can Do It.

col·lab·o·rate [kuh-lab-uh-reyt]

Via Wikipedia.com
verb (used without object), col·lab·o·rat·ed,col·lab·o·rat·ing.
Collaboration is working together to achieve a goal. It is a recursive process where two or more people or organizations work together to realize shared goals,  — for example, an intriguing endeavor that is creative in nature by sharing knowledge, learning and building consensus. Most collaboration requires leadership, although the form of leadership can be social within a decentralized and egalitarian group. In particular, teams that work collaboratively can obtain greater resources, recognition and reward when facing competition for finite resources.

JASON WU

Photo via Delta Skymiles magazine

At age 29,  esteemed Fashion Designer Jason Wu has had multiple collaborations in building his brand. One that I am becoming more and more familiar with is his work with Brizo, a very fashionable and  high quality brand of Kitchen & Bath plumbing fixtures.

If you haven’t heard of Jason Wu, here’s the short version.

Born in 1982 in Taipei, Taiwan;  Jason moved to Vancouver, Canada at age 9 with his mother where he learned English. His mother had recognized his unusual talent when he was a young boy.  Jason then attended  boarding school in Connecticut, sketching all the way until entering into a  Collaboration with Integrity Toys for designing doll clothing (which is very fashionable by the way!). Take a look!
With the profits of that collaboration, he went on to Parson’s School of Design and eventually opened his own design house and wowed viewers with national attention when First Lady, Michelle Obama, wore a gown Jason designed, for the President’s Inaugural Ball.

First Lady Michelle Obama in gown designed by Jason Wu. Photo via Glamour Fashion

Next up: a collaboration with Brizo. Two great design houses com together for a fashionable faucet.

Jason Wu carefully contemplating faucet design for Brizo. Photo via http://www.brizo.com

Below is a faucet from the Jason Wu for Brizo line.

Odin_faucet Jason Wu for Brizo photo via http://www.Brizo.com

“At the center of the collection is a faucet unlike any other. Named for mythology’s Norse god of wisdom and magic, the Jason Wu for Brizo Odin™ faucet features a unique and unexpected rotating handle motion to emphasize the collection’s modern and seamless design. Punctuated by Wu’s signature Miss Wu owl emblem on the tip of the handle, this faucet is truly the collection’s showpiece.

The Jason Wu for Brizo Odin faucet is equipped with SmartTouchPlus™ Technology, which allows users to start and stop the flow of water with a simple touch anywhere on the spout or handle of the faucet.  For a more intuitive experience, its hands-free mode activates the flow of water when hands are anywhere within 4” of the faucet.” quote: Brizo

If you would like to hear Jason speak on fashion and his personal design concept, you can view it here:

 Jason is now in collaboration with NEST Fragrances

“This month, Wu’s first candle, in collaboration with NEST Fragrances, will launch at many of those same high-end stores. Jason Wu Orchid Rain—a mix of white orchid, nashi pear, pomegranate and goji berry—burns in the ultramodern entryway of Wu’s sweeping showroom in Manhattan’s garment district. Wu breathes it in. “This is what I smell like, in a $48 candle.” He notes that the candle is his first foray into home accessories, suggesting it won’t be his last.” ~ Fashioning a Brand – Delta Sky Magazine

Jason also collaborates with Target with affordable fashions.

Photo via http://www.Target.com

And one more…

Photo via Linda Merrill

I have had the pleasure of meeting Jason Wu in person twice. Here I am with some of the Blogger 19 Alumni who attended the Kitchen and Bath Industry Show (#KBIS) last month in Chicago.

Jason has several additional products  under the umbrella of his empire. As you can see, he has quickly established his brand by wonderful collaborations with top companies across the spectrum of lifestyle goods.

What can YOU do to collaborate and build a brand?