Saturday, March 23, 2013

Upholstery Fabric Score!

With all this white and off white furniture we've picked up recently on Craigslist, we have been talking about reupholstering a chair or sofa in something other than white. I have gotten estimates from a few reputable upholsterers and it seems like a pretty reasonable and affordable approach... Until you add in the price of fabric.

Sadly, every time I spy a fabric I really love, it turns out to be Fortuny or Brunschwig or some such prohibitively expensive brand. So, imagine my joy when I found this bolt of 12 yards of Kravet 53% silk / 47% poly in vibrant blues at BIG NYC today. It is brand new still in the plastic shipping bag Kravet mailed it in to someone last year. I don't know exactly what we'll do with it but I love the colors and feel. So luxurious.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Art Acquisition: Who is Grisha Dotzenko?

I picked up this woodcut print at BIG NYC the other day.  It was in the back leaning in a stack of other framed artwork against the wall.  It was $10 and is really nicely framed.  It is titled "Miracle" and signed "Grisha Dotzenko" and dated 1961 and has an "A/P" designation on it, all in pencil .  

I Googled the artist's name and enough credible references came up to confirm that it was not just some student work from a summer workshop in the Berkshires.  More important though, I really like it.

V was surprised that I didn't think it a little too religious looking for my taste, but I quite like whatever is going on in it: a God-like thing with lots of little folks under its wings zapping or creating a flower.  I also like that despite the composition which feels like it should be hung in landscape orientation, it is signed to be hung in portrait orientation - it makes it seem like this powerful thing is diving straight towards the earth rather than just flying along -- it makes a collision seem inevitable.

Anyway, this is not a great pic with the reflections showing and I will add better ones later once I figure out how to photograph it through the glass without too much reflection. (click pic to enlarge)

Black Walnut Slabs

Here are pix of the black walnut slabs we have which await purposing in a friend's basement.  They are 54" long and approx 16" wide and 5/4" or 6/4" thick.  Two have the live front edge on the sapwood and one has a clean cut front edge.  
The color is much yellower in these pix than they really are - bad lighting.

Design Idea: Console on CL - How about this?

This is a Baker console/buffet on CL right now for $300.  Cheap as can be and perfect size.

38 1/2" high (floor to top of side curl) and 17" deep
The top opens up to become a full buffet and extends from 52 wide to 71 wide - AMAZING!!!
It is a lot like the one we didn't get this weekend at the warehouse down by the Brooklyn waterfront, but it is 4" wider and has a little more "Asianish" detail.
So, the size, price and functionality is perfect. But do you like the look?  
If it isn't perfect, then consider: at this price, is it an acceptable placeholderOr would we rather do machine legs with thick walnut shelves?


Tuesday, March 19, 2013

DESIGN IDEA: DIY Console Table with Machine Table Legs

Here is a selection of legs and tables for consideration.  Almost all of these legs are on ebay right now in the $100-$300 range.  Since we have 3 slabs of black walnut 54"x16"x2" sitting in a friends basement just waiting to be mounted to something, this seems like it might be a quick (and heavy!) solution. (click any pic to see a larger version)

I especially like this style leg (above and the next 4 pix below) since they are fairly simple design-wise and are made to accomodate a lower shelf.  It is an Atlas Lathe Leg.

Not sure why I'm including this wood table in here - but I found the pic and I like the look of it.

Monday, March 18, 2013

DESIGN IDEA: Credenza or Console Table

We have spent the past couple weeks looking for a piece of storage/cabinetry furniture to go just inside the front door.  The top of this piece will serve as a landing strip for keys, phones, anything we need to remember to take with us when we leave the house.  But it should also have a couple drawers along the top and, if it is to be especially practical it should also have cabinets below.

We weren't sure what the thing we were looking for would be called.  I began by looking for credenzae (I've decided that is the plural!) and breakfronts.  Searches for credenzae mostly produced pictures of office furniture (including some beautiful Florence Knoll (henceforth, FloKno) pieces with walnut panels and marble tops) alternating with lots of those teak/walnut MCM pieces with the ridiculous dated designy shapes on the doors and pulls.  Also, most credenzae are much lower than we would want.  I think 30" is the absolute minimum height although V is more flexible (which helps when having to stoop to get your keys of the low top surface). 

The big problem was that most of what I was seeing was too deep.  In order for this piece to not jut out in front of the big deep-contoured window moldings (which, are a good 8 inches wide), it can't be deeper than 18 inches.  Plus, the floor moldings are almost 2 inches deep so it would be best if the legs of whatever we get are recessed a little at least on the back so that the top of it actually abuts the wall.  

Once you get down to the shallower pieces, it seems the things we're looking for are called "Console Tables".  So, that's nice.  Now we know what to call the thing we're looking for.

Maximum width is 76" or it will block the door, but it would make sense to go closer to 54" and leave some room on either side. 

Anyway, we found a lovely looking Baker cabinet on CL - and we talked ourselves into it.  Then we found out that it was sold already.  Bummer!

So back to the drawing board.  Here is a slew of pics of "console tables" - all except the first one are from  The first one is just a prop in an ad for a sweater pattern from the Swan Island Yarn company website -- too bad, it's my favorite.

and here are some more from various sources found by googling "console table" or "console cabinet":

Here are a few of the links for ones I like: