My design deal of the week; or month, or year!

I love old, worn and faded carpets. To me they evoke history that tells a million stories. When the trend of vintage rugs became popular a few years ago, I was of course, in my glory! A vintage style area rug can cost anywhere from $1500 to $6000 (estimated for a 6×9 size, depending on fibre content, knots per square inch and overall strength condition). Here’s a close-up of the rug that just arrived at my house:

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I recently ordered this blue, maroon and brown area rug online for my living room. It had the worn look that I love and gives a casual but luxurious vibe to my livingroom. Now, to find some pillows and a lux throw in matching colours! Of course there will be an updated blog (with a design lesson) on how to choose accessory colours coming soon… :)

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A worn rug is a great option for busy households with children and pets. The aged look only gets better looking with daily abuse. This one is 100% wool and will last another lifetime.

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So, what why was this rug a Design Deal, you ask? I purchased it online for $200. Yup, comparible rugs sell in fine carpet shops for 10-20 times more. Go to eCarpetGallery.com. Thats where I found this fabulous rug- they have thousands to choose from. The rug was delivered to my door for free (it arrived within 3 days of ordering) and I have the option of returning it for free if I decide it does not work (but I love it)! Note: this rug sells on their site for $575 (still a fabulous bargain compared to $2500) and was on a 3-day blowout sale at an additional 70% off. eCarpetGallery often has ‘blow-outs’ on certain style of rugs and sends email alerts to let their customers know. Take a visit; I guarantee you will fall in love with one of the thousands of rugs displayed online… you will thank me later!

May all your Design Deals come true! KL

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((note: this blog was unsolicited from ecarpetgallery.com))

 

Toppings On The Tree

I’m not a fan of stars or angels on the top of a Christmas tree; its not a religious thing- I just have’nt found one that I have found intersesting enough. I am racking my brain as what to top my Christmas tree with this year.

Last year I topped it with a vintage tophat and red scarf- for a Dickens effect at the top of the tree. It was easy to do and was very effecive.
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How do you decorate the top of your tree? I’d love to know. Also, if you find anything visually interesting, please let me know!

Here’s a cute tree-topper option; perhaps for the newly married couple? Anthropologie’s Owl Couplet Tree Topper, $88.
Owl Couplet Tree Topper, Anthropologie

And while we are on cuteness; these vintage salt and pepper shakers will bring a nod of the past on Christmas morning. Urban Outfitters’ Vintage-Inspired Elf Salt & Pepper Shakers, $18.
Vintage-Inspired Elf S&P, $18 UO

Let the hunt begin- I will report back in a week or two on what I have decided for this year’s tree topper. Happy Holidays, KL

High-Octane Design History

Bonjour (hello) from Montreal, Quebec!

Nuns’ Island (officially Ile des Souers) is an island in the St. Lawrence River that is an extension of the city of Montreal. Beautiful, large trees, round roadways (they have round a-bouts like in England) and many charming, newly built town homes and apartments line the streets. Of course many of the residential buildings face the water which makes you feel so far away from the city- but only a 10 minute drive.

One of the most fascinating things to see on Nuns’ Island is a gas station designed in the late 1960’s, which was recently turned into an outdoor community centre. The Nun’s Island gas station is a modernist-style filling station designed by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe in 1969, one of four buildings by Mies in Nuns’ Island. It is no longer a working gas station and as of March 2012, went into the process of being converted to a community centre.
It was the first filling station on the island, and the first designed by Mies, who had worked in collaboration with local architect Paul H. Lapointe on the project. The station was commissioned by Imperial Oil and later an Esso brand station. Here is a late 60’s image of the filling station in use:

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The City of Montreal (and the borough of Verdun) is transforming the building into a community arts centre. Eric Gauthier is the lead architect on the project, which will see the two glass pavilions rebuilt to their original 3,000- and 1,000-square-foot sizes and will become a community centre for teens and people over 50 years of age. The two main buildings have been dubbed the “sale blanche” (white room) and “sale noire” (black room), after their floor colours in each area. The original glass-enclosed attendant’s booth will serve as a life-sized display case of Mies’ and the building’s history, with the former fuel dispensers to be marked by ventilation shafts. Here is the centre today; such a great way to preserve history & design while giving back to the community. Currently there is a lot of road work and construction around the new community centre but awe still strikes all who walk or drive by to see it.

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I hope you enjoyed learning about this small slice of design history from Nuns’ Island. Please feel free to post this to your Facebook or Twitter page (there are buttons below) and I would also ask you to Subscribe to my blog by pressing the link below. I look forward to more design history blogs coming soon! Cheers, K.