Sunday, December 25, 2016

Santa In the Window

This charming Santa Claus has been holding up his banner all season long in the window of Tinsel Trading, one of my favorite shops in New York City. He is somewhat elf-like, not as portly as the more traditional 20th century American Santa in the background. There is room for many versions of Santa. He is an idea, an embodiment of goodness, cheer and giving. Whether yours is skinny or chubby, jolly or dignified, St. Nicholas, Father Christmas, Sinterklaas, Kris Kringle or Pere Noel, I hope he brings to you the very best of Christmas.

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Pink and Red Ornaments

My grandparents had ornaments like these. A few have survived to dangle from the branches of my own Christmas tree. They are back in style now, sought out by those who do not remember when Mid-Century Modern was not yet a "design style," but instead, simply the new living room furniture in your great-aunt’s house. Grouped in rows on the ground floor of New York's ABC Carpet & Home, they have a graphic impact. With such similar colors, the differences in shapes becomes more noticeable. But in the end it was the shadows cast on the wall that entranced me; distorted curves in shades of gray adding another pattern to the mix. Grandma would appreciate this but we wouldn't dare let her look at the price tags.. 

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Winged Horses, Bergdorf Goodman

"Destination Extraordinary" is the theme for the 2016 holiday windows at Bergdorf's. Everything green is called into play to carry out the theme: leaves, trees, ponds, bugs, cacti. It's hard to pick a favorite but I'll go with the pair of winged horses holding aloft a tiara-clad dreamer in fabulous star-studded shoes. The painted background looks like a renaissance map of the grounds of a chateau. The worn antiqued texture of the horses contrasts with the pensive dreamer's disco-era garb and makeup. It makes you think. It makes you stop and stare. That's a successful window.

Sunday, December 4, 2016

A Really Great Wall of China

The main wall in a local bakery/coffee shop is a vintage china lover's dream. Don't ask me how all those plates are attached. Perhaps epoxy, as no hardware shows. It's a good example of how a large group of anything can make an impressive statement. Care has been taken to make all the plates relate as a unified group, overlapping them, while still leaving a little space for the wall to show through, here and there. The more time I spent looking at it, the more I noticed the differences in the sizes, colors and patterns of the plates. A tight mass of similar somethings accentuates the differences between all those somethings. It's a design lesson mounted on a wall.