Balance, Design, Products
February 14, 2011
Happy Valentine’s Day! I’ve got a soft spot for this holiday, especially now that my kids are old enough to get it. This past weekend was spent making cards and talking about love. Is there anything finer? We will be celebrating all week here at Lifework. I’ve asked our contributors to write a love letter to their favorite piece of Herman Miller design (inspired by a sweet post over on Unplggd devoted to Evernote). Today we start with Jordan and his yellow Eames molded plastic chair. You’ll have to stop by to see which pieces we’ve chosen. Cerentha
The furniture in my apartment (a typically small-ish Brooklyn one bedroom) is carefully curated, which means I’m fond of each piece; but the piece I love the most is a vintage Eames plastic side chair with a stacking base. It was a birthday present given to me several years ago from my wife and father-in-law; of course, though that might be the main reason I like it so much, that’s only one of the reasons that it’s my favorite chair.
Because I use it at my desk, it is probably the chair I use the most in my apartment. Even though it must be at least 35 years old, the chair is still sturdy, incredibly comfortable, and clearly designed and built to last.
I find the design particularly satisfying because it immediately communicates exactly how it was made, hiding no materials or articulations. Its organic shape, contoured to the body, is playful, smart, and elegant; it adds a beautiful burst of color to the room; it is lightweight and easy to move; and, most importantly, the cats love lounging in it.
Two last reasons to love the Eames molded plastic side chair: it is currently manufactured in environmentally friendly materials and is 100% recyclable; and, after over 60 years since it was first designed, it remains terrifically affordable.
December 3, 2010
This is the last of our contributor’s gift guides. Jordan Awan, who is an art director at The New Yorker, and a valued member of the Lifework team, reveals his wish list.
During the holidays, this sturdy Stanley Flask ($20) should never leave your inside coat pocket. Rust and leak proof, it’s as aesthetically pleasing as it is practical; use it to make holiday travel bearable, or simply to enjoy an extra dose of winter cheer. Order one from DWR or head to the wonderful Brook Farm General Store in Brooklyn.
Playful and beautiful, the Eames Hang-It-All ($179) has become an essential part of both my apartment decor and my daily routine: it’s always my last stop on my way out the door and my first when I return. The Hang-It-All really does hang it all; pile on bags, coats, scarves, sweaters, hats, and anything else (if you can bear to cover it up, that is!) Designed in 1953 by Charles and Ray Eames, it’s available from the Herman Miller Store.
M&Co.’s Bodoni watch ($105) is, to me, the Platonic ideal of a watch. Designed by Tibor Kalman in 1984, it’s lightweight, comfortable, and has a perfectly proportioned face which elegantly shows off the understated Bodoni numbers. It’s as timeless as a timepiece can get. Buy it from MoMA and show your good taste.
Designed in 1951, Isamu Noguchi’s Akari table lamps ($145) are functional sculptures that look at home in any setting. The soft glow they emit is an easy way to warm up a room on a cold winter night. Buy them from MoMA or the Noguchi Museum in New York; otherwise check out all the beautiful lamps for sale in the Akari Store.
Hillside makes heirloom-quality scarves ($80); no matter how light my jacket is, on a cold day my scarf keeps me toasty. If you live in New York, head to In God We Trust for the best selection; if not, check out Hickorees, but do it quickly, before they sell out.