Stacey and Doug prepare food before the kitchen's massive wall of soothing tile from Heath Ceramics.
Iran Museum of Modern Art, Shiraz, Iran (1969–1970)
The concept for this never-completed museum, which got as far as the model phase, consisted of a stepped series of rooms rising out of the rocky plateau above the Iranian city.
In the living room, the painting is by Geoff McFetridge and the wood paneling is original to the house. “Jewel-y color and simple shapes—they feel right in this house,” says interior designer Jessica Helgerson.
Part of the thrill of collecting is finding treasures in unexpected places. Congdon came across a five-piece Cathrineholm canister set with teak tops at a rummage sale in Maine, and made off with the quintet for a cool $2.
Tapestry by Evelyn Ackerman
"Evelyn Ackerman and her husband Jerry were important exponents of the post-war Southern California design scene. Evelyn's work was largely figurative, while Jerry's was more usually abstract. Together they produced a wide variety of exquisitely designed and crafted objects which represent the best of modern California design. This hand-woven, wool wallhanging is a fine example of Evelyn's exuberance with color and composition."
George Nelson worked with Vitra to create a variety of wall clocks, including the Eye Clock, rendered here in luxe brass and rich walnut. Now considered an icon of midcentury design, the Eye Clock is a distinct departure from traditional clocks—it is shaped like an abstract eye, including lash ticks to mark the time instead of a conventionally numbered face.
Viipuri (Vyborg) City Library TodayDamaged and neglected over time, the library has undergone a still-in-progress restoration that has helped expose more people to Aalto's work.
The Rabari collection by the London design studio Doshi Levien consists of three carpets handmade in India using the hand-knotted and hand-woven Sumak techniques. "At the very beginning of the project, we decided to create a series of rugs that evoke the sensual and shiny world of tribal folk embroidery in India," Doshi Levien says. "We wanted our collection for Nanimarquina to reference the unfinished embroideries, like studies of different techniques in progress, as they gradually emerge over time." Photo courtesy of Nanimarquina.
Kiely and architect Maxim Laroussi designed the kitchen unit. “I originally didn’t want an island, but I liked what we did because it feels like a piece of furniture. It’s cozy to cook around,” Kiely says. Panels of orange and olive Formica accent the 1950s-inspired piece, which houses a cooktop by Smeg. A checkerboard of closed cabinets and open shelves offers storage against the far wall for Kiely’s collection of dishes, knickknacks, cookbooks, and small appliances, like the KitchenAid stand mixer and radio by Vita Audio. The floor is green Marmoleum, selected because it feels warm underfoot. Kiely’s own Stem dish towels and ceramic storage jars add more lively color to the room.
Among her latest products is an upholstery line, including the Rowridge pattern, shown on a circa-1960s chair by Liverpool company Guy Rogers.
Another similar tool that designers might use is a mood board, which seeks to convey the feeling or vibe of a space with images instead of the exact fabric or colors that will be used in a space. A mood board abstractly conveys inspiration, ideas, and connections that would otherwise be hard to explain using just color or words.