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A Natural Path

27 Jul

Some months, like June and December, denote a fleeting romance, but these months are the name of a motown business for Katie and Nick Forte. The couple’s website junedecember.com and business is named after the months in which their children were born.

The company, based in Michigan and produced in Michigan with mostly all American-made products, is a home decor and paper goods business with many themes of nature. They sell napkins, pillows, notepads, desk pads and pencil sets. Their newest product is a pencil terrarium.  This set includes five fern patterned pencils packaged in a glass tube. The glass tube can be turned into tiny terrarium.

In their previous work lives, Katie worked in advertising and graphic design while Nick was a restaurateur.

Katie designs the many kitchen style motifs and paper good products. Some have catchy phrases like Smitten with the Mitten. (Michiganders know that we carry a map of the state with us at times and show where we live on our hand.)

Michigan is more than a place to live for Katie and Nick, “It’s where we share our journey with children and where our roots go deep.”

The business started out at the NYNOW trade show and now is nationwide in many boutique stores.  For more information, go to junedecember.com

 

 

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Be Green in 2017

11 Dec

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The Pantone Color Institute has spoken for 2017, and green will be the color trend of the year in fashion and decor. It’s neither hunter green nor kelly green, but a leafy green like nature. So don’t be green with envy. Be like Kermit — “It’s easy being green.”

Here are the thoughts from Pantone:

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ArtPrize Friends

28 Sep

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Every fall the city of Grand Rapids, Michigan transforms into an art paradise for artists and art lovers. It’s all because of ArtPrize — an open competition for artists to submit their work and have the opportunity to win more than $500,000 worth of prizes. Artists’ works are displayed throughout the city, and the venues are open to the public for free.  The artists connect through the official ArtPrize website.

Here is the mission statement: “ArtPrize is an international art competition and festival open to all and determined equally by public vote and expert jury. ArtPrize encourages critical discourse, celebrates artists, transforms urban space and promotes cultural understanding.”

This is the eighth year, and I’m proud to announce that two of my friends are part of the 2016 ArtPrize competition.

Janet Kelman’s glass sculptures are spectacular and the piece “Oracle” (above) is no exception. The aqua hues are breath taking.

Photographer Gene Meadows does not disappoint with his edgy work “de-con-struct,” which is below. Although I also like his traditional photos of home interiors along with his beautiful series of Cranbrook in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan.

The Detroit Free Press included Janet and Gene in an article highlighting metro Detroit artists at ArtPrize.

 

 

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Bon Apetit in New York

10 Jun

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There are many fantastic restaurants in New York. On a recent visit, I ate at La Grenouille in Midtown. It’s an authentic French restaurant in Midtown.The food and the atmosphere were superb. The decor is awash in pink with flowers galore. Just the perfect place to enjoy a glass of wine with fine food.

Motown Home Pops With Color

16 Apr

 

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This Motown home makes a bold statement. It’s featured in the May 2016 issue of Traditional Home magazine in a story written by Khristi Zimmeth. The interior designer is Corey Damen Jenkins.

“Taking cues both from Courtney’s closet (the owner) and from the fashion runway, Jenkins presented a combination of bold hues and modern choices juxtaposed against a traditional backdrop,” writes Zimmeth.  The emerald green color choice adds elegance and richness to this 1939 historic home, located in a Detroit suburb. This settee in the parlor invites guests.

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Although the home is traditional glam, I love that these kitchen chairs (below) are from Pier One.

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There’s a wonderful mix of unexpected fabrics, textures and hues.

Photography: Werner Straube
Produced by Doris Athineos

Irresistible Italian Ceramicware

11 Apr

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I recently had the opportunity to meet Susan Gravely, founder and CEO, of Vietri. She was autographing her handcrafted Italian tableware at the retail store T is for Table in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. I have a set of colorful bowls shown in the photo above.

Vietri is a family-owned business and one of the largest importer of handcrafted Italian tableware. Gravely is one of three sisters, and their business story began more than 30 years ago when they visited the Amalfi coast and met Italian artisans. Their designs range from traditional to whimsical to holiday.

“Our mission today remains the same as it was over 30 years ago: to inspire the celebration of life with family and friends through the joy of handcrafted Italian designs for the table, home and garden.”

Miami’s Marvelous Art Basel

8 Dec

I just returned from a weekend of fascinating art, people watching and fine food. I experienced Art Basel Miami. If you are an art collector or an art lover, this is the place to be. More than 250 international exhibits were on display featuring works from 2,000 plus artists. The modern and contemporary art was refreshing and funky. It’s the site for established artists as well as emerging artists.

Here are some examples:

 

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Clockwise: The top left is a mesh installation of a beautiful woman. Next is Motown gallery owner David Klein flanked by two Kelly Reemtsen oil paintings. The pepperoni pizza is by Peter Anton, and finally the ostrich is by Enrique Gomez de Molina.

I leave you with one last thought and theme of the weekend– Life is Beautiful.

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Chartreuse: A Colorful Restaurant

18 Oct

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The restaurant Chartreuse Kitchen & Cocktails adds to the list of the new hot spots in Motown. Located in Midtown, the decor is vivid with a wild shade of green — chartreuse.  The menu is creative as the decor. From the Lake Erie walleye to the duck confit to watermelon salad, the food is refreshing and delicious. And as you can see, very colorful.

Barnyard home filled with fun, fantasy and love

31 Jul

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Photojournalist Linda Solomon’s home is featured in the Detroit News. It’s truly a labor of love, and a unique home filled antiques that Linda and her husband, Barry, have collected over the years.  Flea market finds, turquoise-laden objets d’ art, and whimsical bric-a- brac fill this treasure trove. I had the opportunity years ago to feature the home in the now defunct Style magazine, and Detroit News writer Maureen Feighan captures the spirit too.

Linda Solomon sure is talented. See my previous post when she was on the Meredith Viera Show.

Photo credit: Clarence Tabb Jr. for the Detroit News

 

Memorable Wedding Gift

23 May

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Looking for an original, memorable wedding gift? How about a hand-drawn portrait? Andrew and Jess, my son and daughter-in-law, just received this pencil drawing from their friends. The drawing is from Grace Portraits, and it was just featured on their Facebook page and on the website Style Me Pretty. This is a special gift.

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