1. A Chair Worth Hanging On To (or Hanging Out In!)
Mine is a “Martingala” chair by Marco Zanuso. I found it on 1stdibs and it was in terrible shape. It still had the original marigold yellow upholstery and it smelled awful. Every time someone sat on it another layer of foam would disintegrate, making it seem as though the chair was shedding. Despite its obvious drawbacks, I was instantly drawn to its sensual lines and original design. My amazing upholsterers Craig and David lovingly restored it, and it’s become a favorite in our home – I have to negotiate with my husband and three daughters to get a turn in it!
2. Hand Painted Wallpaper
I have always loved wallpaper, but was never a fan of hand painted wallpaper. I think part of my issue stemmed from the fact that so much of it is based on chinoiserie – having lived in Hong Kong for over a decade, it felt ubiquitous to me. My perspective changed completely when I discovered the work of Brooklyn-based
3. The Author’s Lounge at the
Bangkok is the first place I visited in South East Asia, and the city I would most often escape to while living in Hong Kong. My husband and I love staying along the Chao Phraya River and having an afternoon lemongrass tea at the Author’s Lounge at the Mandarin Oriental. This special spot is a tropical oasis amid the frenetic chaos of Bangkok. Once a covered garden, this glass covered jewel was the haunt of the likes of John LeCarre and Oscar Wilde. Its design is an elegant nod to the colonial past of much of South East Asia.
I was born with something called Club Feet. Being born handicapped is such a huge part of my identity but I rarely acknowledge it. I learned to walk with casts on my feet, I had my ankles surgically repaired when I was 13-months-old, and wore braces until I was 9 that helped straighten my feet. I was treated by a fabulous surgeon, Dr. Norris Carroll, at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto, Ontario. I was incredibly lucky.
Recently I was introduced to a charity called Miracle Feet that developed a procedure to correct club feet in the developing world for $250 per child. When the Executive Director Chesca Colloredo-Mansfeld couldn’t find a brace on the market that the charity could afford on their shoestring budget, the NGO tapped Stanford University’s Extreme Affordability course to find a way to make one. This commitment to cost effective innovation has allowed Miracle Feet to change the lives of so many children in the developing world who would otherwise be destined to life as outcasts. I am in awe of the passion, commitment, and ingenuity of women like Chesca and the incredible impact organizations such as Miracle Feet have.
5. The Incredible Women of Salon
Salon was born out of a desire to create a curated contemporary design platform that highlights the original work of female designers and makers. There are so many talented women in the contemporary design space whose work I admire. I am so excited to provide emerging and established female designers with a unique platform to showcase their work. I have three young daughters and this project is rooted in my attempt to influence their future, as much as the current and future landscape for women in the creative trades. I am awed and humbled that so many of today’s leading female designers and makers took a chance on Salon.