“I’m in a New York state of mind!”

Who goes to NYC to relax?! Well….me!! Last weekend I hopped on the train and headed for the Big Apple in hopes to recharge my batteries with color and shapes. I can’t imagine a better city to max out your visual cortex!

One of my “go-tos” for inspiration is always Jonathan Adler. Trained as a potter, Jonathan has now become an accomplished designer. Adler launched his first ceramic collection in 1993 at Barneys New York. Five years later he expanded into home furnishings, opening his first namesake boutique in Manhattan. Adler’s inspirations come from Mid-century modern, art and global pop culture. His design has been referred to as “happy chic”.

Jonathan Adler - bold design

He’s the king of geometric design and color with a side of naughtiness. I love the way he mixes strong edges and masculine lines, with a heavy dose of lux fabric in deeply saturated hues. It’s all so forward thinking while being anchored in iconic mid-century history.Jonathan Adler mirror

Jonathan Adler - MidCentury Modern

As I pipped around the Big City, I came across a very cool, very hip, and very generous company called Housing Works. The retail thrift stores are filled with curious, spirited, gently used items. They have playful ways to interact with customers from online auctions to build up events where you can see, but can’t purchase until the event party. I’m am really hoping to get a call from my husband in September giving me some good news about a pair of fabulous arched shelves (can you see them in the photo below? Great find, huh?).

Housing Works arched bookshelves

As fun as the retail shops are, the work they do is extraordinary. The advocacy work for AIDS patients from housing, to health, to programing is life-altering. And the opportunities to donate and volunteer are countless.

Housing Works NYC

Next in line for my visual candy tour comes ABC Carpet!  I couldn’t get over the playful, child-like feeling of the designs. Can you say, “play rooms for adults.”? Emphasis on lounging….ahhhh!

ABC Carpet

ABC Carpet 2

ABC Carpet 1

Still channeling my inner child, I stumbled upon another one of my favorites, Ligne Roset. Known for its contemporary design that are both bold and beautiful. Of course, I also love that they embrace the environment and sustainability too! Their furniture is beautifully detailed, with a bit of a playful side. Their designs are often close to the ground again a nod to childlike play.

Ligne Roset


Meandering through the streets of NYC, I found myself among a fine line of modern men’s perfumerie at MiN. What struck me (aside from the scent) is that the store design created a story and it’s reinforced by the tales told by the fragrances themselves. It’s a wonderful lesson in the art of creating a lifestyle that speaks of you not to you.


I bet you rarely look around and actually think about the colors, shapes and textures in  your life. We’re all guilty because quite frankly, we are all to busy to do so! If it isn’t bold enough to stand out, it’s going to get over looked. Try it some time. It doesn’t have to be in a big city, try it in your own home. See what stands out to you. What feels like you. What’s fresh and fun?

Opening your eyes to your surroundings is like a visual package of Jelly Beans. Enjoy each element as a special flavor of its own!