While walking down Wooster Street a month or so back, I walked into a beautiful showroom, Moura Starr. The chandeliers there are stunning, reminiscent of couture jewelry. It's more Harry Winston than Home Depot. One fixture that caught my eye was this one-shirred chiffon over crystal.
As I browsed around in other stores that day, I noticed other versions of the chiffon overlay shade. This black one here is interesting because of the addition of black crystal drops. I'm not a huge fan of that ruched chain cover. It's kind of dated looking.
This fixture is from Crate and Barrel. I like the clean, unadorned look of this one. The secret to keeping it looking great is to use lower wattage bulbs or frosted bulbs. With a sheer shade, you don't want bright beams of light, you want a soft glow. Higher wattage bulbs also bring the risk of "browning" such a delicate shade. Browning=good for meat but bad for chandelier shades.
Even Costco (no, really!) gets into the act with their sheer shade/crystal lamp here. At $129, it's an affordable option that still brings some serious glamour.
Ever watch those design shows and see those boards with pictures of furniture and fabric samples? Those are known as concept boards and they're supposed to be a snapshot of the finished space. So imagine my delight as a designer when I checked into the Holiday Inn down in Baltimore to see a one for the room where I was staying.
A few weeks ago I headed down to Baltimore with some friends to check out the city. I knew there would be great baseball and tasty crab dishes (soft pretzel + crabmeat + cheese= a reason to have tastebuds), but I didn't know there was such a thriving art and design culture down there. What a pleasant surprise to find so many interesting places to explore. I'll share some of the fantastic shops in upcoming entries but today is all about the art museum. It's a short cab ride from the inner harbor, but what you spend on cab fare you make up with free admission to the museum.
My favorite exhibits, by far, were the miniature rooms. Think dollhouse furniture but on a whole other level. The fact that most of them feature Federalist style furniture, a personal favorite, didn't hurt. They were just so clever!
The museum features a beautiful selection of cabinetry, silver and textiles. It's just big enough to have a nice variety, but small enough to cover in one trip. Plus, it's a great way to get out of that Baltimore humidity for a few hours!
This new web format allowed me to move my blog and consolidate all of my information. Going forward, new posts will be no longer be on the old blog, but can instead be found here.
Christine Schwalm is an Interior Designer and Visual Merchandiser based in Los Angeles. This space will keep you updated on what's going on with CSD along with some ideas to inspire you. Go here for more information about pricing and services and here to make an appointment.