Have you ever stood in the entrance of a restaurant, a small business office, or even a retail store for a few seconds wondering where to go from there? Did those few moments of awkward embarrassment quickly turn to frustration and did you think “Why is it my responsibility to figure out what to do in your space? Why isn’t anyone coming up to help me?”
You may have forgotten about the experience as soon as you walked in further and figured out how to maneuver to what you wanted… but maybe not. Maybe you turned on your heels and made a quick exit never to return.
When I was in school for Industrial Design (way back when), we learned how to draw our product designs in 3D, and then use markers (yes, magic markers) to render those drawings into realistic-looking objects. One method in particular was learning to render “wood grain” onto a plastic object. Remember the plastic wood grain on – well everything! Alarm clocks, car dashboards, stereos? That was what we were learning to draw.
At some point as a designer, I realized I didn’t want fake wood grain on anything that was plastic. I think the American consumer soon realized it too. How about being true to the material properties? Besides, it was pretty ugly most of the time. Plastic is a great material because it molds to any shape you can manufacture, it picks up any color you can dream up, and is flexible. Why would we want it to look like something it isn’t? (more…)
So, I was working on a total new kitchen design for a client/friend who decided to take the design and do the implementation herself. Well, a few months later I got “the call”. My friend, in desperation called me to ask for my help. With Thanksgiving approaching (and a house full of guests expected) the cabinet maker had only installed the cabinet frames. Drawers, and doors were nowhere on the horizon. A few quick calls helped me understand what had happened. (more…)
Sophistication makes a comeback
If I had to pick a word to describe the 2016 color trend palette from Sherwin Williams, I think “subtle” is the best way to define it. There’s no bold yellow, no bright blue, and no brilliant green. So what’s the story? Are we to give up on color that startles us out of our stupor when we come home at the end of the work day? Are we to say goodbye to the bright green wall in the restaurant that commands our attention? Maybe so. Perhaps it’s time to look at the subtlety of color and bring sophistication back to our walls, and to our textiles. (more…)
Unless you have lots of experience, shopping for lighting online can be time consuming if not downright confusing, and you could end up getting the wrong light for the setting you plan to use it in. As an experienced pro, I’ve certainly had my frustrations in finding the appropriate light fixtures to create the right lighting. I’ve worked on many projects where the client was aware the lighting in a home was inadequate, but wasn’t sure how to remedy it. So if you’ve put off updating the lighting in your home, I totally understand. But having the correct lighting is important for 3 main reasons: it reduces strain on your eyes, it contributes to how we visually perceive just about everything, and it makes up a large chunk of our energy bills. (more…)
From the moment you pull the car door handle your brain knows whether you’re about to have a good experience or not. The feel of the latch opening, the sound of the handle as it releases, and most famously, the sound the car door makes as it closes as you get behind the wheel. Start the car, and a litany of feedback sounds coupled with the growl (or purr) of the engine follow a well thought-out sequential pattern in feedback, instruction, and experience. Car companies spend hours and big budgets on getting these sounds just right. It all contributes to the car’s brand, your driving experience, and ultimately whether or not you’ll buy their automobile. (more…)
The long term effects of unwanted noise and lack of privacy in the office and in public spaces is well documented – lower productivity for employees, less accuracy in work product, employees being less helpful, lower employee retention, and more likelihood that customers will be unhappy with their total interaction. In general, noise affects our social and psychological behavior.
In the age of big open spaces for buildings, shared workspaces, and open home designs, the issue of sound often falls to the Interior designer – after the fact. By observing and documenting people’s activities in their daily lives, the desired sound levels and types of sounds can be managed and incorporated into the overall design plan. This research can be as critical as any space planning. Solutions, in the form of products and technical data are more sophisticated, and beautiful than ever. (more…)
Don’t be afraid of color, be afraid of the WRONG color. Color is a beautiful thing when it’s used to brighten and enhance an otherwise dull or dark room or to soften and tie together seemingly random colors in a room.
So why are so many people afraid of it? Well, it doesn’t take much to pick the wrong color. Since so many things effect how a color will look, like lighting, texture, whether it’s a shiny or matt surface, it is sometimes difficult to know how the final color will actually look. I recently had a client who was tired of her brown and beige living room and decided it was time for lightness and some bright colors. So I went in search of fabrics for new pillows and drapes that would pull some brightness from her new sofa. The 2 fabrics in a linen blend in colors, Wisteria and Coral from Kravet, were a perfect match. (more…)
Welcome everyone to the launch of Destination Design’s new webpage. I’m excited to get your feedback, so I can improve the site. Go ahead and send me an email through the contact page. Look for my first blog coming soon.