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Jamie Bush

A while back my pal David John of the uberfantastic blog You Have Been Here Sometime casually informed me that he had worked for Jamie Bush, architect and designer extraordinaire. I shouldn’t have been the least bit surprised because David John is ultra talented, super educated, and lots of other important stuff. And then I started stalking Jamie Bush… dude has some genius solutions for odd spaces, and he knows how to work materials like nobody’s business.

Just when I think I’m over Mid Mod, this comes along to remind me that I’m only over erstatz Mid Mod — the ugly lovechild of fleabitten avocado green upholstery and big box espresso veneer.

I would happily sell my soul to live in a place like this — half baked neotrad aspirations be damned.

I never said I wasn’t a fickle beast.

[Pics via Remodelista]

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Move-In Ready

Sometimes when we post extraordinarily designed homes (like this one) I play make-believe-fantasy-party that I’m in the market for a new home and, oh, what is this?  suddenly this interesting home shows up in my MLS listing and (gasp!) it’s in my price range.  I imagine whether or not I would chose to throw down my cash to live somewhere so extreme (hint: the answer is always yes).  The home in today’s post is no exception. In fact, it’s so damn amazing it’s the very first house ever in the history of Design Crisis to be shown completely unfurnished.  Just full frontal architecture for you to drool over.  Who have I become?

Seriously, could you imagine opening up your MLS search to see this puppy?  Do you think you would hyperventilate or just have a heart attack?  This Toranto home was custom built (with no budget, time line or design restrictions) for a cool 24 million, so don’t expect to tour it with your realtor anytime soon.

How would you dudes feel if I told you this 18,000 square foot home was owned by a math professor?  Ok, a math professor who also wrote a slue of successful calculus books, but a matt teacher non-the-less.  Pretty bitchin, right?

Ok math students, quick problem for you:  if train A leaves the station at 1:00 pm traveling 100 mph and train B leaves the station at 4:30 am traveling 60  miles per hour, how quickly would Karly move the F into this house?

Yes to the yes.  I love that the treated wood gives the house a mid-century feel.  Not that I’m all mid century crazy these days (I’m not) it’s just nice to see a modern home that still feels warm and livable.

And the gold on these stairs drives it home

More stairs, more curves, more wood and concrete.  Ok, yes, fine, I’ll take it.

PS. this joint was designed by Shim Sutcliffe

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Erin Knows Me

This morning I woke up to a precious gift in my inbox:  Erin sent me a link to one of my new dream houses.  This is a sign of several things 1.  Erin knows me pretty dang well 2.  Erin is slowly making her way back to the interwebs which means that 3.  Hopefully she’ll be taking over for me soon and 4.  You get to see great pictures today.  Let’s do this:

Designed and occupied by Guilherme Torres, this living room fulfills my every last fantasy.  The only thing I would change is the chandelier.  I would replace it with this one.

Hello ceiling!

(ps, what’s up with the tiny fan up there?  It will go the way of the light as soon as I move in, promise)

Chair: stays

G:  replaced with either a K or an M or one other letter that I can’t reveal to you just yet

No to the toys, yes to the texture created by the conduit.  I will also be replacing that spread with something a bit more cheerful.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m still loving this place

I displayed this one XXL so you could get a full frontal of those walls.  I think I need to make this happen somewhere… you know I have my own kitchen to remodel.

I would let Erin stay here when she visits, just for being so kind as to send me this link.

Thanks Erin!  And happy weekend bros!!

xo, K

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Tree Hotel

I have always always loved tree houses.   I especially love children’s tree homes in suburban neighborhoods.  I love the idea that something so primitive as  living in trees has found a niche in 21st century middle America.  Of course, I also really love a good design hotel, so OK, I probably love a tree house hotel for it’s sex appeal alone more so than your run-of-the-mill suburban kid’s club, which is why I would be willing to ignore my no-travel-35-weeks-into-pregnancy rule if only I had the cash money to fly to Sweden to stay in this joint:

Behold, the Tree Hotel.  With 7 distinct tree cabins, and a bunch of designy tree stuff, it almost makes the outdoorsy-only amenities worth suffering through.  (A 6 hour nature trek is their top summer excursion?  Maybe this place should get a tree pool and some tree cocktails)

Anyway, I’m never going to make it here so we’ll fantasize about the rooms only

This is what the inside of the mirrored cabin (above above) looks like.  Apparently you can climb up a ladder to look out that window.  This is where the tree cocktails may not be the best idea.

Leave it to the Swedes to call this cabin the blue cone.  Whateves, there’s still a good chance I would pick this one.

The UFO cabin

And the Birds Nest, which has a lovely Tim-Burton-meets-Burning-Man quality.  But I dig it.

So, which one would you dudes stay in?

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Invisible Cities

Long ago, in a far away time, I bought my acid washed, peg legged pants from Esprit. Now I buy them at Urban Outfitters. In case you haven’t noticed, the crazy 80s are back in a big way. Of course the wide world of interior design isn’t immune to the vagaries of trends, which seem to progress through the art-fashion-pillow life cycle until they die a gasping, lonely death on the clearance shelves of TJ Maxx. Short lived though they may be, I like following trends — although I have to say I felt a little green at the gills when I first saw the new slew of statement making brights and strong shapes. The 80s were not kind to me, with its broccoli bangs and crop topped warfare, and those linebacker sized shoulder pads that required nothing less than an absolutely unwavering sense of self confidence. Should I admit that confidence was not a quality I was born with? I still have to work for it. Every day.

Studio Toogood

Maybe my hard work is paying off, because I’m starting to move beyond my own crippled sense of nostalgia as I approach this second wave of 80s inspired wares. I’m even setting my jaw and looking deep into the neon heart of the past, to primary sources like Italian designer Ettore Sottsass, who is looking more and more like a straight up genius when viewed through my new confidence goggles.

Ettore Sottsass

One part Beetlejuice, one part Bauhaus, and one part boozy good time, Sottsass set the tone to angular and primary as founding member of the Memphis design movement. Though his work should never be confused with the current, flimsy iterations of post modern furnishings typically found at Eurway, they do take up some majormajor visual space. As even Sottsass acknowledged, a little goes a long way.

Though I can finally look at his high Memphis work without enduring painful flashbacks, I was still jazzed — and relieved — to see this house he designed near the end of his long life:


Working into his 80s, Sottssass’ mellowed out architectural effort looks to the past while also giving me something to look forward to. Within it, I see the seeds of a more mature Memphis inspired design aesthetic. And I like it. A lot.

Spare but warm, angular but not wildly so, this house is eminently livable. And of course the acres of glass, stunning reflecting pools, and luxe finishes don’t hurt. It’s obviously the refinement of a life’s work.

Sottsass died at the tail end of 2007. I suspect that the scope of his influence is only beginning to surface, but don’t think that other designers haven’t already begun mining. Kelly Wearstler’s beach house and Avalon Hotel have obvious smart references to Sottsass’ late work. Expect to see a lot more of the Memphis master, but not the kind that demands confidence.

The kind that inspires it.

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