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Posts Tagged ‘design’

MasterCraft was definitely a maker of fine mid-century household goods. This once mighty American brand created products to last. This flashlight has, “MasterCraft” and “3” printed on the bullet end. It’s made of solid copper. The handle and some of the other parts are nickel-plated.

The flashlight certainly has its share of small dents and common wear, expected of a product dating around 60 years old. It measures nearly 10.5 inches long. The reflector housing is approximately 3 inches in diameter. As you can see, it works perfectly and takes three “D” sized batteries. It has a substantial feel in your hand and illuminates very well. Great classic design.

Offered at SOLD

Email: inquire@hartonginternational.com for details, payment and shipping arrangements

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Being familiar with the French landscape designer, Patric Blanc, I’ve seen Parisian office buildings covered in swaths of textured and colourful foliage. The garden designs seem to defy the laws of gravity. Not only can a building have grounded gardens, rooftop gardens, but also vertical gardens. Truly remarkable to see.

The concept of vertical gardens, grown on walls has been taken to all new environments. A South American rain forest has been recreated on the New York condo walls of Michael Riley. As a director of the New York Horticultural Society, Mr. Riley has plenty of experience with tropical specimens, but he wasn’t satisfied with traditional pots and containers. He built a complex infrastructure or irrigation, drainage, containment and lighting on the walls of a typical New York flat.  Brilliant!

Thanks to the New York Times, you can read more about this gravity defying indoor garden.

For more about gardens in Chicago, visit Watercolour Gardens.

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On May 21st & 22nd, Central Street will host its annual garden fair. Located at Independence Park, just west of Green Bay Road on Central Street.  The hours will be from, 9:00 am to 4:00 pm.

There will be a huge selection of high quality perennials, annuals and garden ornamentation for your choosing.  Garden experts and enthusiasts will be on hand to answer your garden questions.

The event is associated with The Lincolnwood Garden Club of Evanston. Founded in 1929.

For details on garden design, visit Watercolour Gardens.

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We all know the value of home improvement, but many homeowners overlook one of the most important factors in a homes worth. Landscaping can add significant value to a property. Start with a design that uses logic, to create usable outdoor space. Features are really important in landscape. Ponds, outdoor rooms, sculpture, fountains, terraces, distinctive trees, creative planting and tasteful paving are all important. Quality is a must. Skimping on detail and using cheap materials can actually detract from a homes value. Budget is important to focus on while in the planning stages and not when a project is already underway. It’s not cheap to have a designer landscape but neither is the cost of owning a home. So why not pay for it, enjoy it and see it as a worthy investment.

According to The Boston Globe, just having a landscape can add 12.7% to your property value. A sophisticated and functional garden can tack on 42% more to your home’s value.

Money growing in your garden

Mature plants, spacious patios, and other outdoor features can all add value to your property.

By Elizabeth Gehrman

“Show me your garden . . . and I will tell you what you are like,” wrote the English poet Alfred Austin in 1905. Today, the words might more aptly be “Show me your garden and I will tell you you’ll get more money for your house.” Up to 12.7 percent more, to be exact, according to a 2007 paper by Virginia Tech horticulturalist Alex Niemiera that brought together research from the previous decade. The factor that added most to a home’s value – up to 42 percent – was design sophistication. For more…..

Contact Watercolour Gardens for landscapes designed by an Oxford trained designer. Tel. 847 380 2699.

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As a landscape designer, I often take scent into consideration in planning a garden. When designing scented cues, the emotional response to the visual stimuli is enhanced. Scent can make the experience more meaningful and memorable for the garden’s owner and guests, when used properly.

Scent is a very powerful tool. It serves as a means of communication in so many ways. An attraction between individuals. A memory. A way to manipulate consumers, as stores pump Oxytocin into ventilation systems to increase spending. Scent is not something we think about all the time but our subconscious minds are always aware of it.

The New York Times recently covered a symposium on scent as design.  It’s interesting to see what the scent experts are up to.

A Parsons Symposium on Scent as Design

By JOYCE WADLER                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Photo: Robert Wright for The New York Times
WE arrived late for “Headspace: On Scent as Design,” a symposium held March 26 in the auditorium at Parsons the New School for Design, and so missed the smell of birth being spritzed into the room.

Happily, we had another opportunity, because that scent, along with several others — including “being a baby,” “puberty,” “partnership,” “empty nest,” “sex” and “death” — were available for inhalation at a table outside the auditorium, most of them embedded in small plastic beads that visitors were invited to take.

“No one likes puberty,” Kim Fisher, the young woman at the table, said. “Everyone likes sex, but there are no beads for it.”

Being not quite product-ready is not uncommon when things are brainy and theoretical, and at Headspace — a conference presented by Parsons and the Museum of Modern Art, in partnership with International Flavors and Fragrances Inc., Coty and Seed magazine — they were extremely cerebral. Does your head ache after that list of sponsors? Imagine how you would have felt in the auditorium, where designers, perfumers and industry experts talked about “co-creation” and “facilitating dialogue with the consumer.”

“I see design going through filtering, clarifying, making things visible — how does that go towards defining your work as a designer?” a moderator asked in a morning session, making us ache for the scent “coffee.” Also, the auditorium was freezing.

Why is it so cold? we asked Jamer Hunt, the director of the new graduate program in transdisciplinary design at Parsons and one of the people who dreamed up the symposium, after we beat it to the outside foyer.

“There’s a special technology for diffusing,” Mr. Hunt said. “We need the back doors of the auditorium to be open so the scent flows through to everybody.”

For Headspace, Mr. Hunt explained, designers and architects like Toshiko Mori had been paired with perfumers to “design using scent — not just a fragrance, but something that would affect our everyday lives.”

Ms. Mori had been involved in creating a scent called “anti-gravity.” Marije Vogelzang, a Dutch designer, had made eating utensils imbued with the smells of foods that might be harmful to consume but are still nice to sniff. The urban designer Majora Carter had worked on scents that could be diffused through the ventilation system of an apartment complex in her neighborhood in the South Bronx.

Mr. Hunt also seemed proud of a student project called “Scent Clock,” a piece of cardboard listing six times of day. “If you scratch at each hour, there is a different smell associated with a different time of day,” he said. “Scratch the shiny spot.”

The reporter scratched an orange rectangle labeled “10 wake up” and smelled not much of anything.

“We wanted to make it a challenge and didn’t want it to be easy,” Mr. Hunt said. “It’s a combination of toothpaste and an alarm clock.”

The reporter inhaled again, smelling mint. That explained the toothpaste, but where was the alarm clock?

“There should be a slightly more plastic smell to it,” Mr. Hunt said. “Part of the challenge is what does an alarm clock smell like? I think it smells like electronics, which is a certain kind of burning smell, but there is also the metaphysical. An alarm clock wakes you up, so you want a smell that is very bright.”

The reporter moved on to the scent made by Ayse Birsel, who has designed pots and pans for Target and toilet seats for Toto. Ms. Birsel and her colleague Yoko Hiroshi, working with perfumers Celine Barel and Laurent Le Guernec, created a birth through death line. As Ms. Birsel conceived it, each scent would be contained in a large, smooth stone that would symbolize that moment in life. Since there was no time to imbue the stones with the scent, they were presented separately.

Ms. Birsel, who wore a black stone-like Japanese gourd around her neck and black fishnet stockings, had a half-dozen stones with her.

“What we wanted to do was give form and scent to threshold in life,” she said. “We wanted to create a very intimate form. The form of the pebble as something you can hold in your hand would symbolize a moment in your life, like a birth or a partnership.”

So those two halves of a stone that fit smoothly together — is that one “partnership”?

“This is sex, actually, the pebble as yin and yang, two perfect pieces that come together,” Ms. Birsel said. “Partnership is the whole stone. We decided puberty is about dichotomy, you have multiple personalities and a piece missing because you are not totally whole.”

What about the scent?

“We asked them to create a scent that is unbalanced, with too many hormones,” Ms. Birsel said. “We had them imbued in the little plastic pearls, because in the time frame we had we couldn’t inject them in the forms.”

We heard nobody likes the puberty scent, we told her.

“Well, nobody likes puberty, so it’s a successful smell,” she said. “That was the intention.”

Click for the original article.


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Just as any tool, garden tools come in various levels of quality.  Many cheaper tools will get the job done, but might only last a season or two.  If you want something that will last a lifetime and put less stress on the local landfill, buy tools with a proven forging process.  It really does make a difference using a quality tool.  There’s less of a chance of breaking or bending under hard use.

Clarington is one of my favorite tool companies. Since 1780, they have been assembling fine tools.  Clarington has a long history of craftsmanship and are not outrageously expensive either.  You can buy more expensive tools but I’ve found Clarington to stand up well to time and wear.

Even though they are manufactured in the UK by Bulldog Tools, they are readily available in the US.  Here is a link to a Stateside distributor. Also, The Garden Tool Co. carries Clarington garden tools.

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Planted containers and decorative urns add scale and visual points of interest to a landscape. Some gardens confined to tight boundaries, might consist of only container plants. The plants residing inside a container can be upright, structural or soft and colourful.  It’s just a matter of setting and how much visual attention you want them to attract.

Recently, cubed planters in a range of materials, from zinc to polished concrete have grown in popularity. So have monochromatic textural plants. Shades of green foliage and shrubbery have become a dominant trend in upscale container planting.

Many garden trends start with London’s annual Chelsea Flower Show.  Zinc containers  became big with Chelsea show gardens about five years ago. As a result, they have become a standard for contemporary container flare.  Zinc works well in both contemporary and many traditional landscape settings. Although design trends come and go, metal is here to stay.

SimplyPlanters

Terrace Gardener

For container garden design, visit Watercolour Gardens.

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