Monday, July 19, 2010

Design Star 5; Episode 5: Behind the Design

Design Star 5; Episode 5: Behind the Design

It was so refreshing to actually have real clients this week to design for. And not just any clients, we had the honor of designing for some of the most respected group of guys in this country, the FDNY! Notorious for bravery and infamous for selfless service, I couldn't have asked for greater inspiration.

The firemen evaluating our design

As a designer, I am very client driven and personality inspired. I design rooms to be lived in and customized to a person/persons' need. This week we finally had the opportunity to do what we are made to do, create "living" enviornments. Although we are still stuck with the impracticallity of having to work in groups, at least we could feel united by a common purpose on this challenge.

We were charged with encorporating a signature element into the space, and I couldn't let this moment pass by without a full explaination of my inspiration for my signature element. Most people knew I chose to do a mural of the NY city skyline, but it was never shown why on the show.

The official company patch of FDNY Squad 18

The company patch is a very sacred symbol for each individual firehouse. Squad 18's company patch was special because it was redone just prior to 9-11 so it still has the original city skyline with the twin towers. So I chose to do a replica of the city skyline as it appears on the patch. But if you look at the twin towers in my mural you will see something different.
Squad 18 is the only squad to lose every firefighter on duty twice in its history! The last time being in 9/11 when all 7 of the firefighters on duty lost their lives. So in the twin towers in my mural you will see 7 lights left on to symbolize the lives and legacies of the 7 men still shining brightly. I wanted to give a perminent reminder and symbolic memorial to the brave men who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our insurance of our saftey.

The mural and close up of the twin towers with 7 lights left on

The firemen were grateful for the design and gave me a patch of my own.. Thank you Squad 18!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

A Modern Touch

T h e M o d e r n B a c h e l o r

This is following the process of taking a loft style condo from a cookie cutter unit to sleek modern bachelor pad on a young professionals' budget. The goal of this project was to maximize the small space and create a very sleek modern style for a not so extravagant budget.


The first thing was to invest in quality pieces of furniture. Imported portugese bistro table, custom designed couch. Still to come are minimalist bar and bistro stools as well as additional seating. Wood flooring, lighting and art are the upcoming elements that will complete this space.

Keeping with whites and greys as main elements to kep the space very bright and sleek, bright color was brought it with accesories and one unexpected orange wall to seperate the work area.

The the work area I brought in hanging storage with frosted glass doors to minimize clutter and free up floor space.

Designer tip: Using wall mounted storage, glass surfaces and furniture with tall legs leaves more visable floor space. This is what gives the illusion of a room being bigger and less cluttered.

Savings tip: I purchased a pair of metal leaves at a discount home store. I bent them, primed them, painted them a bright yellow and then hung them on a wall. By bending them it made them curl off of the wall slightly and added an additional dimension for very low cost

I custom designed a sofa that was low profile, elevated on chrome sleigh legs and tailored with a durable, silver fabric. I then accented it with brightly colored pillows to contract the tone of my "power suit" sofa,

I brought in a mix of colorful, metallic and clear accessories to pull together the fresh and modern look...

I have an unexplainable disdain for traditional bath mats. It seems as no matter what the pattern or color they come off as... ummm... well... traditional. So instead I brought in a bamboo tile bath mat to bring in a natural modern element.

In the bedroom, I went with low profile, simple dark wood furniture. But I had glass cut to cover all the tops so that it gives it a more expensive look and reflects light around the room. I brought in live flowers (thanks design star) to soften the feel of the space. A full legth mirror was placed opposite to the window to bounce light around the room and make the room appear larger.

Overall this project is well on it's way of becoming a personalized urban bachelor suite that will be sure to impress. I can't wait to bring you the final project!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Love's True Form-Part 1

Our nations capitol passed the law allowing gay marriage to be recognized in the Distict of Columbia. This mark in history is the muse that inspired this monumental chapter of an already unbelievable love story.

There will always be people who disapprove because they do not understand. But the courage it took to make this step is remarkable. I have known one of the brides for 20 years and I can not see her with anyone else other than the woman that destiny chose for her. Thru all obstacles, love prevailed and other's opinions took a back seat to their dreams.

Besides wearing white, tradition was out the window...

This was a day that was 14 years in the making. There was so much emotion that filled the room. It was a very small ceremony but definitely one of the most touching I have ever attended

And with one kiss... a dream finally becomes a reality...

Love's true form is unconditional, genuine and constant. It doesn't matter what package it comes in, just the honesty of its contents. I have photographed many couples and weddings, and I can honestly say that this is one that gave me hope for true love.

Dedicated to the beautiful newlyweds... Sherell and Benedicta

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