Peek into Architectural Digest Home Design Show

There’s a yearly tradition (aka: eye candy shop) for many designers -> the Architectural Digest Home Design Show (yum!, no there isn’t any food … oh, but they did serve wine). I attended on Thursday (trade-only day) before it was open to the public. I hanged out with my pals Nate Berkus (not really, more like his stalker taking his photo), and Thom Filicia (whom I may had stared at a bit toooo long for ‘his comfort’). They are both designers that I admire. Ready for a quick tour? Below is my badge (a must-wear-item or else you get tackled! seriously).


The bench/table above are made from spring-assembled pins that moves (“springs”) to your body (“buttucks”). I admit, it was pretty comfortable, and oooh sooo unique!  Then, as if I had spotted pink cotton-candy tray, I froze when I I spotted the graffiti-like ceramic stools. They are AMAZING looking in person. I want one, along with these fluffy ottomans (yes, I did the “tushy-comfort-test” = passed!)


And then …. what is this? Floating jellyfish on the wall (see below photo)? I stared at it like a child looking at candy through a glass window; artist is Peter Bynum (genius!). There’s no real marine life, it is glass art layered (3D action!) in acrylic panels = GORGEOUS!

See how I casually elbowed stood at the side (pretending to read something) in order to take a pic of Nate (yes, we are in first name basis!). Thom …… I’m eyeballing you (he’s such a funny man). Did you ever watch the hilarious reality tv series “queer eye for the straight guy”; he was the home decorator expert cast member (they also had a chef expert, hair stylist. etc.). I miss that show! 

Now feast your eyes on this beautiful art work ….

I also had the wonderful opportunity to check out all the table settings created for DIFFA Dining by Design gala event, where designers are given a 10′x10′ space (approx??) to design for a gala event that raises money for DIFFA (Design Industries Foundation Fighting AIDS).  I wasn’t able to attend the event, so I was very grateful for being given access and take pics to share w/you. Check out this video from 2011 from the View where Whoopi Goldberg takes a camera into the event in 2011 (aren’t the setting gorgeous?):

Now for this year’s tables … we walk in greeted by a water-fall wall (pic on the left) designed/hosted by Ralph Lauren Home, then cool geometric design hosted by Koroseal Wallcoverings. I forgot who designed the white chairs, glam’d up table; but the baaa baaa <-my sheep impersonation (or is it a ram?) was created by Rachel Laxer w/Robert Kuo.


Did you spot the cushioned tree-swing in the wallpaper? GORGEOUS. Then there was my temptation to touch the wall of paper that hugs likes an igloo this table setting:

And look closer at the furniture in this design space below; do you recognize what the bases for the table + stools are? Created by New York University (mentors David Rockwell and Barry Richard). Look closer ………
They are hangers! I KNOW = AMAZING, right! I would totally hang out at a night club (umm, back in the days before I got sleepy by 10:30pm) with hanger as sculpture (creative coolness). Hey, my New Yorker readers, do you remember the night club called Bed in Manhattan? Yep, they actually had beds in their lounge area in lieu of chairs. Oh, I digress. Pretty butterflies, though I did get a bit cheeped out that there were insects on the plates (as decor), I’m fine with not inviting any creepy crawlies when I’m dining. Here are more photos …
Above (I love the casualness of the bike) was designed by New York Times / Frette. It totally makes me want to have casual dinner parties outdoors with friends (hmmm, but who would clean up?!!).  Then there was David Stark’s design, hosted by my pals Benjamin Moore.
And then there was the most delicious (literally) design created/hosted by Gensler + Herman Miller consisting of Hershey Kisses (with purple wrappers) as WALL ART which we were able to open (eat, yum!). The concept being that the wall will take on a design of it’s own by us opening the wrappers sporadically.
Isn’t it gorgeous? Glimmering purple wall beauty.
Then came the table setting that stopped me in my tracks, made my heart heavy, and reminded me what beautiful Dining By Design was all about - helping people with HIV/AIDS. The holes in the design are a representation. 
Many vignette settings had inspirational statements, I’ll end this post with this setting’s message and ask that you take a moment right after you read it to send a prayer of healing&love to all affected by HIV/AIDS, then HUG someone next to you (ok, if they are a stranger, then instead of hugging you can send your love through your smile).
Here’s the statement: “Beauty represented by the image is distorted by voids representing HIV/AIDS. The void in the tableware is for everyone to remember what needs to be done.”
Ok, I don’t want to leave you possibly feeling sad, so I’ll add more … did I tell you I was thrown out of the Hershey’s chocolate vignette? Want to know why? 
Noooo, I didn’t take more than one (though tempting).
Noooo, I didn’t pull one out and the wall fell over (though that would had been funny if it happened to someone else!).
Here’s what happened, I was invited to step into the “room” by the hostess and encouraged to take/pull a chocolate piece from the wall, of coooourse I graciously accepted (hey, it was the polite thing to do). So, I turned around to reached for it when as I was unwrapping the chocolate I felt a tap on the shoulder by a man asking me to get behind the ropes! What the what? Where did the female hostess go? Was she even part of this vignette? Queue flashbacks to the days when bouncers tapped me in the shoulder at nightclubs/bar (just exaggerating, I was never thrown out of clubs, ok maybe [definitely] just once!). A bit mortified, I mentioned to the bouncer/stage-setter (who totally pretended as if I was not speaking to him) that I was asked to step into the space, meanwhile in arrives my gal pal, the hostess, ready to swing at the bouncer in my defense explaining their concept of the wall art (picture me behind her yelling … yeah, jerk-face, what she said! Juuust kidding!); instead as the ropes were pulled open once again, I had the honor to help Gensler/Herman Miller create their art = I got my chocolate (picture me holding it up running from the vignette, just kidding; maybe). Happy weekend my friends!
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4 Responses to Peek into Architectural Digest Home Design Show

  1. Nina says:

    I wanted to go as well, even registered but then couldn’t make it. Thanks for showing me around the show with this post!

  2. noreen says:

    thanks for sharing! the chocolate kiss wall-art is my favorite - something for my children’s birthday party, perhaps? but then they’d eat them all and have no room for cake!

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