Monday, September 14, 2009


The other night in New York, Restoration Hardware staged a comeback. They launched their Artisan Collection in The Flatiron Gallery, a gallery/retail lab located within their 22nd Street store. The vignettes shown are at the store, which will serve as their flagship for the Artisan roll out. Gary Friedman, Resto's CEO, handpicked furniture, lighting, and bedding artisans that would bring their dynamic perspectives, global sourcing, materials and finishes to the American retailer. British, Italian, American, Dutch and Turkish designs converge in what I hope will be a major reboot for the company. If you don't have a fall shopping trip planned, visit the web or a catalog to get your Belgian fix.

The collection of over seventy- five pieces is rough luxe meets Belgian chic. I can't mention the look without giving a nod to the one that started it all, Axel Vervoort. Greige finishes, natural leather and light woods round out the new offerings. In this shot, the Mayfair Steamer Secretary Trunk designed by British designer Timothy Oulton opens to the Leather Buckle Chair. Sitting nearby, the Printmakers sideboard made of aged pine is great for storing files and unframed art.

In the dining room moment, the Flatiron Trestle Table is surrounded by Vintage French Round Oak Dining Chairs in a distressed finish. A French Casement Sideboard works well for storing serving pieces, linens and extra cookbooks. They were designed by Luay Al-Rawi from the Netherlands, bringing his reclaimed materials and aged finishes a retail presence. Dutch design and its influence signals a relaxed, less fussy lifestyle. The Filament Chandelier adds a pared-down industrial, architectural element to the mix.

Photos from Restoration Hardware
Restoration also tapped Mark Sage and Rudi Nijjsen of Bobo Intriguing Objects, a gift show favorite. The American/Belgian designing duo met in Belgium after selling antiques, and in five years, have created a following for their iconic, signature reproduction rustic pieces. Best known is their chandelier made of aged wine barrel staves. They put Belgian linens and aged woods back on the map. The enveloping French Wing Chair shown above is based on an antique and has been modified in scale for comfort. It sits in front of the Corbel Glass Desk, a teak piece topped with glass. The St. James 11 Drawer Dresser can handle storing the big stuff.

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