Merch. With A Mouth, By David Chronister

 

(mini Dead-Pool by foxhound30 via Deviant Art.com--(http://www.deviantart.com/morelikethis/collections/186351554?view_mode=2)

(mini Dead-Pool by foxhound30 via Deviant Art.com–(http://www.deviantart.com/morelikethis/collections/186351554?view_mode=2)

(from reddit)

SKILL LEVEL 99 FOLDING!! (from reddit)

(ME, hours of endless presentation and folding)

(ME, hours of endless presentation and folding)

I said MERCH with a mouth, not Merc with a Mouth, though DeadPool is a beloved Marvel Character, I meant Merch–Andiser, merchandise, Marketing associate, Merchandise execution team-member, Visual-Display associate, the Myriad of titles and names that all have to do with retail merchandising from a corporate level to a store level.

I was a lead expert in merchandising after my switch from fast-food management, line cook in a diner, dog trainer, cashier, and all of the other odd jobs I worked in my Late teens and earlier twenties. After I began as a part time sales associate in the home decor department I fell in love with the creative aspect, having wanted to be a designer since I was 5 when I the weird kid coloring on walls and obsessing over my Lite-Brite, and rearranging my room every day.

So eight years later, promotion after promotion I think I have unique understanding on the essence of what merchandising is and how effective of a tool it is in merchants toolbox.

So here are some musings on successful Merchandising:, I believe more accountability and creative freedom needs to be allocated to the store level, when I was allowed to do my own sets and visuals it made my job fun and inspiring, it made the store feel personalized which I saw directly effect the sales of the products.

Of course the rules of merchandise have the same concepts that all good designs have:

Proportion, Balance, Rhythm, Contrast, Emphasis & Focus and Harmony and Unity.(I am currently taking courses on the principles of Design, so if I am spewing text-book phrases I apologize, it just comes out.)

I also want to draw attention to bad merchandise and display principles from a corporate level, the amount of floor flows that do not consider the basics of how fabric moves, how most organza’s/silks/then textiles should not be table folds, how thick knits fold fast, especially to the lighten the work load of the employees. You don’t know how many times I have been at  a store at midnight trying to get the store back to a presentation look and wondered who design the clothing tables/merchandise fixtures, I know a suit in a corporate office who does not get the basic idea of the Golden Design Maxim: Form follows function.  

Here are some beautiful window displays from around the web that showcase the art of Merchandising, which I believe is the true essence of art, to tell a story, start a conversation and bring a little of magic into the mundane world:

(Louis Vuitton, NYC window display, via dw*c on Flickr)

(Louis Vuitton, NYC window display, via dw*c on Flickr)

(NYC Bergdorf Goodmans 2008 Holliday by wallyg via Flickr)

(NYC Bergdorf Goodmans 2008 Holliday by wallyg via Flickr)

(By Monsier Lagerfield, for Chanel at Harrods via http://www.thebaglady.tv/2011/09/chanel_at_harro.html)

(By Monsier Lagerfield, for Chanel at Harrods via http://www.thebaglady.tv/2011/09/chanel_at_harro.html)

(Louis Vuitton collectors spring edition 2011 NYC, from retaildesignblog.net)

(Louis Vuitton collectors spring edition 2011 NYC, from retaildesignblog.net)

 

(Selfridges London via tobysx70 via flickr)

(Selfridges London via tobysx70 via flickr)

 

(Louis Vuitton Paris via Journaldesvitrines.com via Flickr.com)

(Louis Vuitton Paris via Journaldesvitrines.com via Flickr.com)

And of coourse my favorite display was themed Alice and Wonderland done for famed designers to showcase work, among them the immortal, Alexander McQueen:

(Via my DailyBuzz.com)

(Via my DailyBuzz.com)

 

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For Teal? By David Chronister

So a trend I have noticed in my day-to-day life that has been popping up so far this spring is the color Teal,

( Dulux color of 20014 from www.yasminchopin.com interiors blog)

( Dulux color of 20014 from http://www.yasminchopin.com interiors blog)

otherwise known as a shade of Cyan and with its cousins cerulean and Alice blue, or electric blue. Teal is bluish-green with white added with low saturation and its color compliment is coral. Places I’ve seen the shade so far is on nails, patterns and textiles and in collections of home decor. Mixing it with various colors still makes the color pop and I love the trend. Here are some cool uses of the color:

"The top trend colour for 2014 perfectly combines the natural harmony of green with the tranquillity of blue. Reflecting the overriding trend of unlocking, this muted teal has a gentle character and is a favourite in the world of design. Deeper and more sophisticated than turquoise, teal has a subdued richness which is often used to describe tropical seas of shimmering bluish green."

“The top trend colour for 2014 perfectly combines the natural harmony of green with the tranquillity of blue. Reflecting the overriding trend of unlocking, this muted teal has a gentle character and is a favourite in the world of design. Deeper and more sophisticated than turquoise, teal has a subdued richness which is often used to describe tropical seas of shimmering bluish green.”

 

(Ermanno Scervino at Milan Fashion Week Spring 2014 Via  http://www.inspirationbycolor.com/ermanno-scervino-spring-2014-turquoise-dress/)

(Ermanno Scervino at Milan Fashion Week Spring 2014 Via http://www.inspirationbycolor.com/ermanno-scervino-spring-2014-turquoise-dress/)

I love this exciting color that brings the calm of Blue and the serenity of Green, Here is my favorite one of my Favorite interiors, of them all :

(Elixir – Gorgeous Collection from Graham & Brown via www.besthomenews.com)

(Elixir – Gorgeous Collection from Graham & Brown via http://www.besthomenews.com)

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Design rules, busted By David Chronister

From (letters2teampurple.wordpress.com)

From (letters2teampurple.wordpress.com)

 

Via Sarah Bray for Veranda Magazine online, I thought these rooms were worthy of shout out. Over and over again I repeat like a Mantra, rules in design and style are guidelines, not boundaries, I hate matchy-matchy over kill as much as I hate movements and labels. Rustic, modern, contemporary all should be descriptive words, not the reason why you can’t by that cool jacket you like, or sofa, or piece of art. Life is better with variety and interpretation, not regurgitated HGTV make overs or brand loyalty. Here are some of the rooms that caught my eye, stunning in my opinion:

Sometimes balance and matching things can take an ugly turn:

(from uglyhousephotos.com)

(from uglyhousephotos.com)

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A Window into the World of Windows By David Chronister

IMG_20140226_101430IMG_20140226_102131IMG_20140226_101025IMG_20140226_100759

 

On Wednesday, my Interior Design mates and I were giving a special presentation from Tom Gutheney, at Burnett Inc. Windows and Siding. The place was amazing, when you first walk into the entrance you are flanked by models and a reception desk and several consultants working with clients. If you look further past the “Business” you will see the face of eight or more house facades that are like a little “town” to show the different features and various products that Burnett’s offers. We were shown the different textures and synthetic materials that could be manufactured to render wood or metal.

IMG_20140226_101925 There is even a way to hide rain gutters while still having a drainage system for your home. I gotta admit it was a little information overload, there are so many options and so many materials for every situation. Thats why they have the consultants  there to help a client narrow their search from the many options to the right one. As with interior design, you are there to help some find functionality as well as aesthetic. I was highly impressed Burnett. Inc. and good luck at the Home and Garden Show!

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Moore Color Please…By David Chronister

Affinity Collection- From Benjamin Moore

Affinity Collection- From Benjamin Moore

Above Is an Example of the Affinity collection from Benjamin Moore, recently with my color theory class we took a trip to the paint store to discuss the science of Paint, Paint textures, colors and even supplies and techniques. While a little of the chemistry felt overwhelming, especially when they described how the Aura collection had its color blocked inside the molecule so its not just layered within the paint but locked inside it for more durability, it can be scrubbed and washed and has a more sustainability.

“If your not good with harmonizing colors then this company has done this for you. They’ve put out this

“This collection of 144 harmonious hues was designed specifically to make it easy for you to create beautiful, perfectly balanced paint color combinations for every room—and create color flow throughout your home!”

Some Benjamin Moore Affinity colors may evoke memories of overseas travel, while others conjure up gourmet cuisine and exotic spices, and others still recall nature’s flora—not to mention neutrals that are anything but bland.

Purchase the Affinity fan deck, color samples, and paint from our Online Store.

(http://www.benjaminmoore.com/en-us/for-your-home/affinity-paint-color-collection)

Now I certainly will be learning in depth some of the things that were shown on our trip, like dry-eraser board technique with paint, and the rusted metallic texture affects, however my favorite part of the visit was picking up a copy of the trends for 2014. Now the Trend they have chosen to highlight in their collections is Pastels, which is not my favorite color palete, however they have managed to soften them here is an example :

The NEW NEUTRAL: "These colors have proven to be flexible; pair Breath of Fresh Air 806 with Van Deusen Blue HC-156, you punch up a strong blue story. Pair it with Flint AF-560 and it transitions to a more sophisticated statement, more understated." Ellen Neill- Creative Director for Benjamin Moore-

The NEW NEUTRAL: “These colors have proven to be flexible; pair Breath of Fresh Air 806 with Van Deusen Blue HC-156, you punch up a strong blue story. Pair it with Flint AF-560 and it transitions to a more sophisticated statement, more understated.” Ellen Neill- Creative Director for Benjamin Moore-

"We've detected a 'lighter touch', hints, whispers, tints of color. Shifts to pastels without looking too 'candy', too 'Easter egg' which is an exciting message for us, a color company. We've begun to see a shift away from gray to tints of blues, greens, lavenders and pinks. Pastels, softened and filtered, to lift the spirit but not shout too loud... colors that can make a room happy, flatter your possessions and your art. We call these the new neutrals."
“We’ve detected a ‘lighter touch’, hints, whispers, tints of color. Shifts to pastels without looking too ‘candy’, too ‘Easter egg’ which is an exciting message for us, a color company. We’ve begun to see a shift away from gray to tints of blues, greens, lavenders and pinks. Pastels, softened and filtered, to lift the spirit but not shout too loud… colors that can make a room happy, flatter your possessions and your art. We call these the new neutrals.”

If you are looking to explore these color trends you can find them here  (plus a lot of help on color, paint and Benjamin Moore & Co. many other products!)

http://www.benjaminmoore.com/en-us/for-your-home/color-trends-2014

 

 

 

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Lenny Kravitz and His Mod take on Mod By David Chronister

"I do what feels right organically," says Kravitz, photographed Aug. 22 by Douglas Friedman at the Kravitz Design studio in New York. (From http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/queen-latifah-why-lenny-kravitz-624760)

“I do what feels right organically,” says Kravitz, photographed Aug. 22 by Douglas Friedman at the Kravitz Design studio in New York. (From http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/queen-latifah-why-lenny-kravitz-624760)

“Lenny Kravitz’s career defies any categorization. A musician with four Grammys who has collaborated with diverse artists from Jay Z to country singer Jason Aldeanand an actor who next appears in The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, he’s emerging as a force in the design world with a sexy rock-star sensibility that still manages to be welcoming.”(This story first appeared in the Sept. 20 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. )

So I’m sitting at home recently, sick with the flu and I happen to be watching the Queen Latifah show, mainly because Pop-Culture is my obsession and I’m a huge fan of the former Queen of Rap,(Yes I love Rap, I’m 90’s kid at heart), but I gotta say in my fever induced seat I was mainly zoning out till I heard she was going to have the set designer for the show on..Lenny Kravitz. Jaw dropped. I knew he had done fashion lines and he has always marched to the beat of 70’s Mod, but as he took us step by step through his design company and the inspiration for the show it made me really appreciate his amazing talent:

(Frhttp://www.stellarinteriordesign.com/lenny-kravitz-interior-design/om )

(Frhttp://www.stellarinteriordesign.com/lenny-kravitz-interior-design/om )

The inspiration for the talk show format(Produced by Jada Pinkett Smith) was for the audience to feel like we were invited to somebody’s kitchen table to chat for the afternoon. Lenny Kravitz has the spiritual quality that I believe is necessary in interior design, its not just amazing skill for the science, although he has that in spades, Mr. Kravitz channeled several abstract concepts into his design, power was a theme,( his use of gold and copper and brass, and light to emphasize this) possibility was a theme, and peace. I believe he achieved all of this with his command of scale. He really got the earthy personality of Queen Latifah, knowing her intention with show he made sure her platform was the sum of all the qualities of who she was. A woman from New Jersey who was one of the first female rappers, first female rapper to own a record label, politically out-spoken and one of the few celebrities to cross from music to movies.

The entire stage is adorned with Q’s and even the walls have them in the relief. The umber color palette  is beutifull paired with a rounded design to give a feel of open air which on a grand scale has a humble effect. True design takes into account intention.

To see a short video on the execution of the design here is a link from the Huffington Post Article:http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/09/16/lenny-kravitz-the-queen-latifah-show_n_3935407.html

Lenny Kravitz is proving that as artists we truly can honor our creativity, he not only sings and writes and performs great rock, he acts in movies(Precious, The Butler, The Hunger Games),has a penchant for fashion, (in 2014 he is preparing a line for Fred Segal) he honors his muse, 60’s and 70’s Mod, (he is also fashioning a line of vintage sunglasses) and he pours this beautiful perspective into the world of design for Kartell and his take on the Mademoiselle chair:

( Lenny Kravitz and his line of Mademoiselle chairs for Kartell, from www.milia shop.com)

( Lenny Kravitz and his line of Mademoiselle chairs for Kartell, from http://www.milia shop.com)

(image from senatus.net)

(image from senatus.net)

(pic from light public.com)

(pic from light public.com)

(from modlivin.com)

(from modlivin.com)

(from modlivin.com)

(from modlivin.com)

Thus proving its a Lenny Kravitz world, we’re just living in it. (I for one and completely ok with that…)

I also suggest you take a look at his design projects in his portfolio, they will blow you away: http://www.kravitzdesign.com/

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Gatsby, Gwen, Batman And Tulsa, All Things Art Deco By David Chronister

Art Deco is a form of modernism with its antecedent’s in the 1920’s. Art Deco(http://www.arthistory.net/artstyles/artdeco/artdeco1.html)  is my favorite art movement outside of the Warhol Pop Art movement, so naturally I had to dedicate an entire Blog Spot to it. Mostly it’s recognizable in architecture but its presence can be found in a myriad of sources. Take the two fonts above, The first is a quote from one of my favorite novels By F. Scott Fitz Gerald, set in the roaring twenties, a time of Jazz, Excess and Flapper Culture. Art Deco takes on this essence, a time of glamour and optimism, holding something back and at the same time showing off. Here are a few contemporary pieces I found that exemplify its spirits from www,jlfurniture.com, a few elements of Art Deco I adore is the play with geometrics, the use of natural products such as wood or brass and the impact of Gold or bright colors.

(frhttp://www.jlfurniture.com/Art_Deco/art_deco.htmlom)

(frhttp://www.jlfurniture.com/Art_Deco/art_deco.htmlom)

One of the most famous Art Deco buildings in the world is the Chrystler of New York, I love the sunburst that embellish every window and turn on it. I love the mystical power simple design has, in just a few lines and patterns we have a touch of real magic just sitting there in the middle of the New York sky Line. Its something that is tangible and spiritual to me. That is the power of Art and Design.

The interior is nothing less, ornate chandelier’s and cool Sienna marble floors all in shades of yellow in their most glamorous tones, canary and amber; gold and copper:art_deco_lobby_chrysler_building_ny

From http://www.art.com, Print by Jorg Hackermann

From http://www.art.com, Print by Jorg Hackermann

Art Deco never really gets its due, although it seems to echo through out the decades, for example, take Gwen Stefani’s sophmoric solo project,The Sweet Escape, (outside her band NoDoubt), she happened to be in Italy filming her music video for her song  Cool,( off her debut solo-project L.A.M.B.), when inspiration struck in the simple form of a pink dress her bandmate(and ex-lover Tony Kanal) partner was wearing that reminded her of Michelle Pfeifer in Scarface, so enamoured with the look,  she used the glamour of the east coast from the 1970’s for album cover. Most people do not realize the resurgent of Art Deco in early 70’s glam but the style is undeniable, even in director Joseph Kahn’s interpretation of the cover art and the albums title track-The Sweet Escape.

(from Google images)

(from Google images)

(From http://www.fanpop.com/clubs/gwen-stefani/images/27210329/title/sweet-escape-music-video-screencap)(From http://www.fanpop.com/clubs/gwen-stefani/images/27210329/title/sweet-escape-music-video-screencap)

One of my earliest introductions to Art Deco was in a very unlikely place, in the early early 1990’s Tim Burton’s use of film noir for the first two Batman movies were the inspiration for artist Bruce Timm’s for the animated series, dubbed ‘Dark Deco’ by Eric Radomski and Bruce Timm, the series was designed on black paper panels instead of the usual white to give the animation a darker aesthetic, winning four Emmy’s during it’s run on FOX kids.

(From google images)

(From google images)

All of the panels during the episodes give you an eerie feeling, as if the 1920’s had never stopped, all of the screen shots were minimalist and the color schemes dark, like the trouble ever looming for the cape crusader.

(from Google images)

(from Google images)

Here are a few vintage pieces from Art Deco’s Hey day:

(from google images)

(from google images)

I guess my Love for Art Deco could be that I grew up surrounded by it, being raised right here in the heart of Tulsa, Oklahoma, my city is one giant ode to the style:

(photo's by John Shoemaker fromhttp://www.topix.com/album/detail/tulsa/)

(photo’s by John Shoemaker fromhttp://www.topix.com/album/detail/tulsa/)

(photo's by John Shoemaker fromhttp://www.topix.com/album/detail/tulsa/)

(photo’s by John Shoemaker fromhttp://www.topix.com/album/detail/tulsa/)

(from ilovefiberart.blogspot.com)

(from ilovefiberart.blogspot.com)

(From www.preservation.org Boston Avenue united methodist church Tulsa oklahoma)

(From http://www.preservation.org Boston Avenue united methodist church Tulsa oklahoma)

tumblr_ld4zicNj2X1qe7vo3o1_500

(Boston Avenue Methodist church from djbweblog.wordpress.com)

(Boston Avenue Methodist church from djbweblog.wordpress.com)

Most of these are MY favorite examples of the movement but the depth of Art Deco and Art Noeveau are Immortal. The style was considered modern and now almost a century later its luxury, glamour and expansiveness is still promising us that gold and marble future of our dreams.

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