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Wednesday
Oct172018

Eye on Design with Brooks Reitz

The Charleston, South Carolina–based restaurateur, Brooks Reitz, behind some of the city’s top restaurants, including Leon’s and Little Jack’s Tavern, weighs in on his newest hotspot, Melfi’s—and why our Chiltern Double and Pendeen pendants made all the difference in its design. 

 

 

Describe Melfi’s in 5 words or less.

Classic, clubby Italian joint.

 

How does the aesthetic connect with the food?

They are both elegant, straightforward and low on unnecessary frills. This is definitely the cleanest, sleekest room we’ve done. The food is the same—and both come from more confidence in our skills and abilities.


 

If you could invite anyone, living or dead, to eat at Melfi’s, who would it be and why?

The proprietor of my favorite restaurant in Rome, Almoro. He is this tall, elegant and sophisticated Italian man—one of the most dashing people I’ve ever met and his food and restaurant are so good and I’d want to thank him for the inspiration.

 

Besides this restaurant, what is your all-time favorite place to eat?

My favorite places are quiet and elegant—but not stuffy—serving lunch with sun streaming through the window. The service is approachable, but not intrusive.

 

What design elements do you view as most fundamental to hospitality?

Lighting, hands down. It makes everyone look and feel better—two things that are absolutely fundamental to hospitality.



If you could eat one thing from Melfi’s for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Vitello Tonnato (veal served cold with tuna sauce). It’s rich and light at the same time.

 

If you could take one element from the design of Melfi’s and use it in your house, what would it be?

I would really love to take one of the Chiltern Double pendants hanging up in our dining room and put it in my house in my dining room.

 

 

Complete this sentence: If I weren’t a restaurateur, I would be a ______.

Hotelier.

 

Better restaurant keepsake: matchbook, coaster or cocktail napkin?

Matchbook, all day long.

 

Most memorable night you’ve had at Melfi’s so far? Or moment you knew it was going to be a hit? Most gratifying moment?

My first night off, when I sat at the bar with my wife, Erin, had a tiny beer and a bunch of small plates. The food was incredible, and I just felt like the room looked incredible when I sat down for the first time as a customer.



Friday
Oct122018

Anatomy of an Heirloom

One of our all-time favorites, the Cosy pendant is also a mainstay of designers, thanks to its combination of versatile and endlessly adaptable elements. The graphic quality, bold mix of metals, and color selections often result in its becoming the signature piece of the home. A piece that is remarked and remembered. An heirloom worthy of passing down. A vintage treasure in the making. Grandmother's crystal chandelier never stood a chance.

Here’s a look at the parts that make the whole piece shine:


 

 

We followed a Cosy through the shop from start to finish, providing a glimpse of the modern techniques we utilize to enhance the construction of this beautiful bench-made fixture.

 

Head over to our website for additional Cosy details and inspiration.

Friday
Oct052018

An Unexpected Statement

The key to the impact of a true statement piece is not shape or size. It is scale, proportion, and detail—and in not confusing drama with exaggeration for its own sake. Because if there’s one thing we’ve learned over the past 15 years in lighting design, it’s that statement pieces don’t have to be loud to be expressive. Sometimes a whisper—in the form of an unexpected finish, exquisitely clean lines, a pop of color or pattern—is all the punctuation a room requires.

 

1. CHISHOLM CLEAN

A pair of Chisholm Clean fixtures are finished in pink, accenting and echoing the palette of the room.

A pair of Chisholm Clean fixtures shown in Farrow & Ball #202 Pink Ground with antique brass accents and German new antique glass. Interiors by Ellen Kavanaugh Interiors.

 

2. CHILTERN DOUBLE

The streamlined silhouette and green shades on this Chiltern Double both echo and elevate the design of this farmhouse kitchen.

Chiltern Double shown in antique brass finish with polished brass accents. Shades shown in RAL #6003 Olive Green powder coat finish with hewn brass interior. Interiors by Jen Langston Interiors.

 

3. CHP

This Chisholm Hang Pendant is the crowning touch in an already glamorous and utterly original bedroom. 

CHP shown in heirloom with translucent antique mirror glass. Interiors by Taylor Anne Interiors.

 

4. CHISHOLM CLEAN ROUND

The Chisholm Clean Round lends intrigue to a traditional stairwell. 

Chisholm Clean Round shown in Farrow & Ball #93 Studio Green paint selection finish with hewn brass accents and clear glass. Interiors by Maresca & Associates. 

 

5. VIRGINIA

The Virginia more than holds its own against this exquisitely detailed living room ceiling.

Virginia shown in hewn brass finish with milk glass. Interiors by Ellen Kavanaugh. 

 

6. PAVILION

Wooden furniture and accents pair seamlessly with the gunmetal finish of this Pavilion.

Customized Pavilion shown in gunmetal finish with gunmetal accents. Interiors by Wendy Word Design.

 

7. YVES FLUSHMOUNT

The geometry of the Yves Flushmount provides the perfect counterpoint to the wood paneling in this classic library-living room.  

Yves Flushmount shown in hewn brass finish with pot white glass. Interiors by Carlyle Design. 

 

8. THADD

A pair of entryway Thadd fixtures in robin's egg blue provide a pop of top color to play against the bright red front door.  

Customized Thadds shown in Benjamin Moore #1678 Blue Nose paint selection finish with milk glass. Interiors by J. Jones Design. 

Monday
Oct012018

Making a Statement

The statement piece is the focal point of the room, the centerpiece—not just a crucial lighting category but also a high-impact visual moment that is as essential to the overall design as, say, crown molding or the paint color on the walls. Not only does it set the tone for the architectural accents that surround it, but it also supports the decorative elements that come later, whether they are rugs to furniture to art. Here are eight examples of making a statement through lighting.

 

1. CHELSEA

The Chelsea commands attention as a traditional-with-a-twist focal point in a kitchen.

Chelsea shown in Farrow & Ball #93 Studio Green with heirloom accents and clear glass. Interiors by Maresca & Associates.

 

2. DIAMOND

A grouping of Diamonds add drama without overpowering this living room.

Customized Diamonds shown in blackened copper with clear glass.

 

3. BEACON

A scaled-up blue Beacon for an equally showstopping staircase.

Customized Beacon shown in RAL #5003 Saphhire Blue powder coat finish with polished nickel accents and clear glass. Interiors by Adam Hunter Inc.

 

4. THADDEUS

The Thaddeus makes the perfect hanging accent in a layered living-dining space. 

Thaddeus shown in polished brass and milk glass. Interiors by Scott Sanders LLC.

 

5. WEST WYCOMBE

A pair of West Wycombes further elevate an imposing marble kitchen island.

West Wycombes shown in bronze with blackened steel frame and partially translucent antique mirror glass. Interiors by Hillary Thomas Designs.

 

6. KENSINGTON

The Kensington stuns in a grand light-filtering staircase.

Kensington shown in white. Interiors by Tamara Eaton Design.

 

7. BETTY

A black Betty makes a bold statement in this office study.

Betty shown in zinc finish with pewter accents and etched glass. Interiors by MORE.

 

8. FOLIE

The Folie pops in chalky white.

Folie shown in chalky white. Interiors by Jen Langston Interiors.

 

Monday
Sep242018

10 Questions with Martin Brudnizki

In celebration of London Design Week and the reopening of Annabel’s, the famed private club in Mayfair, we chatted with London-based interior designer Martin Brudnizki of MBDS to learn more about his vision for the redesign, which includes our Needles Lantern among other inspiring installs. 

 

Photograph by Luca Marziale


Describe Annabel's in 5 Words or Less.

Eccentric. Hedonistic. Fun. Detailed.


How does the aesthetic connect with the food?

British classics are served in The Rose Room and Garden Terrace, which have been inspired by the English garden, whereas an Asian Fusion menu is served in The Elephant Bar, which has been decorated with a bespoke de Gournay wallpaper depicting a traditional Indian scene. Finally, in The Mexican Bar, delicious Mexican food is served. Everything flows.

 

 

If you could invite anyone, living or dead, to eat at Annabel’s, who would it be and why?

Diana Vreeland, Princess Margaret, Lady Diana Cooper, Oliver Messel and The Dowager Countess of Grantham (fictional character from Downtown Abbey). They’re all fabulous and I’m sure we’d have a great laugh.  

 

Besides this restaurant, what is your all-time favorite place to eat?

Scott’s, where I always have the Dover sole.

 

What design elements do you view as most fundamental to hospitality?

Perfect lighting and comfortable seating.


 

If you could eat one thing from this restaurant for the rest of your life, what would it be?

I like good, honest British food so perhaps the steak or some fresh fish. The lobster linguine is pretty decadent too.

 

If you could take one element from the design of this restaurant and use it in your house, what would it be?

The boldness of colour and pattern


 

Complete this sentence: If I weren’t a designer, I would be an _______:

Art collector.

 

Better restaurant keepsake: matchbook, coaster or cocktail napkin?

Matchbook

 

 

Describe the most memorable night you’ve ever had at Annabel’s.

I enjoy going to Annabel’s with my partner and friends. Often we will go for dinner on the terrace before ending up down in the nightclub drinking Negronis and maybe even enjoying a dance before heading home to bed. This summer the weather has been quite amazing, so I have also enjoyed spending long sunny afternoons on the terrace savouring some cold rose and enjoying the fresh pasta. 

 

More about Martin Brudnizki:

Martin is listed within the London Evening Standard’s Progress 1000, House and Garden’s Top 100 Leading Interior Designers, Debrett's 500 Most Influential People in the UK, The Who's Who List of Influential People around the World, Elle Decoration’s List of Best British Architects and Designers and Wallpaper* Magazine’s Power 200, with the latter describing him as “one of the best restaurant and hotel designers of his generation.”

 

To see more of his work, check out our exclusive collection of light fixtures designed by Martin Brudnizki

 

Photography by James McDonald