Drake General Store is a traditional hotel gift shop, a classic general store, a flea market stand, and a museum shop all rolled into one. They have the biggest and best Canadian pride and love supporting homegrown artists and designers, making them a perfect match for Design Crush and our sensibilities.
Please tell me you took 1.5 seconds to read that graphic, because we’re giving away a $1,000 prize pack!Drake General Store is my favorite shop north of the U.S. border and I’m pumped to be partnering with them for the second December in a row to give you all a HUGE something awesome. I’ve cherry picked my favorite pieces from their classic, modern goods that are a mix of sensible (socks, throws, kitchen pieces) and not so sensible (tarot cards, incense, wind chime) and everything in between.
I KNOW! So many well designed pieces and so many little luxuries to help get you through winter. You could either go the Happy Holidays to Me! route and keep it all for yourself or the My Shopping is Done! route and dive up your winnings as gifts for everyone on your list. Either way it’s a win. (But if you do spy something you’d like to gift know that Drake General Store has worldwide flat rate shipping!)
You guys, IT’S TIME! For the third year in a row 24 Merry Days is here to rock your socks right across the room. Maybe even clear out the front door.
Mastermind Audrey has once again matched up 24 bloggers and 24 prizes. Every day from December 1st through the 14th a different giveaway will be announced on a different blog and revealed on the 24 Merry Days site. I’ll be tweeting the latest one each day (@designcrush) along with hosting one that you’re definitely going to want to enter.
I’m a big fan of Minted, their goods, and what they’re doing for independent artists. I have several pieces of the art they sell in my home, and this is the second year I’ve turned to them for my holiday cards. Minted offers a fantastic collection of both photo and non-photo cards (my preference), and after narrowing them all down to four designs I settled on this one by Phrosene Ras. I love the bright and happy palette and the ability to customize the sentiment.
This year I took the time to input all of my addresses on the website so that Minted could print them right on the envelopes. While I’m normally all for hand-addressing my holiday cards this year is extremely busy, so I took the plunge and don’t have one regret. They look so good!
Minted also offers the option of a decorative element next to the address that coordinates with your card’s design. I really felt like this additional touch helped make up the difference (in my mind) for not writing things out on my own.
Minted will also add your return address on the envelope flap for free. The end result was clean, modern, and just my style.
I’m happy to team up with Minted to give a lucky reader $300 to spend on holiday cards, art, or whatever else might be calling your name! (They also have some lovely gift tags and wrapping paper.) Take advantage of their addressing service or wow your holiday card list with a design that features their new gold foil. Best of luck!
I posted a sneak peek of the kitchen last week, but this time it’s the real deal. I’m finally beginning to share how my new (old, built in 1900) house is shaping up. I think I’ve said before that I bought this home knowing that it was a flip, and fully expecting all of the weirdness/issues that normally accompany such a project. We’ve already done some updating to a few things – roof repairs, a plumbing issue, bringing outlets up to code, etc – and there are of course still things that need done and yet others I want to do aesthetically. But I’m really starting to feel like this house is much more me than the last one in Oklahoma City. There’s character, there’s charm, there’s quirks. I plan on being here for years to come and I’m so happy to share a bit of the journey with you.
The living room is directly to the left of the foyer area. One of the main attributes that had me laying down my money for this place was all of the lovely light – 31 windows! – and openness. My last home had 11 windows and it was a big problem area for me.
The fireplace isn’t functioning, but I’m hoping to change that once I talk to a professional about what the deal is. I really love the stonework. You can’t tell from this photo, but it’s not all flush and they stick out randomly for some fantastic texture. The interior is black which works really well for featuring other pieces (aside from that MIA fire). My old home had a gallery wall in the living room and it feels really nice to be able to break up my collection a little more here.
Before I made the move from Oklahoma back to my home state of Pennsylvania, I sold and donated several things that were no longer my style or not what I saw working in this space. My photographer, Quelcy Kogel, asked me while we were shooting whether minimalism came naturally to me and I had to admit the answer was no. However, I’m loving this more pared down lifestyle that I’ve aspired to for years and am attempting to make it my mindset going forward.
I keep going back and forth on whether or not to remove the shutters on the windows flanking the fireplace, but settled for ripping out the old greying lace curtains that came with the house before the movers even had a chance to arrive. I have an unspoken rule that there will always be fresh flowers in this room because they add such life.
Another old house quirk – the floors are most definitely not even remotely close to being level, as my bookshelves can attest. While I still find it charming and funny I’d eventually like to invest in some sort of built-in for my library collection that would be slightly more sturdy and, well, level.
This is my view every evening as I settle down with the pups and attempt to unwind. There’s a beautiful fir tree just outside the window there and I can’t wait to see it covered with snow.
So are you all ready for a giveaway? I thought so. Lamps.com is giving away the 5 x 8′ Tasman Shag Handwoven Rug that I have in my living room. I can’t even begin to tell you how much I love this thing. We didn’t have any floor coverings for several weeks when I first moved in, and the moment this beauty arrived and was laid down both I and the dogs lost our minds. It feels so soft underfoot and Bebe and Piper love sprawling out for a good nap in front of the couch. And if you spy another rug you love on Lamps.com (yes, way more than lamps!), know that every one comes with a free rug pad. Essential for not slipping and giving your piece a good base.
THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED.
1. Simply follow @designcrush and @lampsdotcom on Instagram! Then leave a little comment saying you did so along with your Instagram handle.
2. We’ll choose a random winner next Monday.
3. Good luck!
Today I’m finally sharing a small part of my new home with you! I’ve been eagerly awaiting this day for a few months. Today it’s just a tiny slice, but starting in a few weeks we’ll be moving on to the entire first floor (I hope you’re half as ready to see it as I am to share.)
So yes, this is clearly the kitchen. Well, about half of it really. I’m going to save the what I love I love/what I hate/what I’ve done/what’s left do rant for the full post on the room, but one of my very favorite parts is this incredible set of Edith bar chairs. They’re easy on the eyes as well as the rear with a generous seat and slim cushion. I’ve never had an island or breakfast bar in any previous kitchen, so I was really excited to find these guys over on Lula & Georgia. They’re perfect for the mid-century vibe that I love and aim for in most of my decor and I know they’ll be a part of my kitchen for years to come.
So I’m about to get to the good part here… which is that you have the chance to win $100 to spend at Lulu & Georgia! Maybe you’re looking for a new throw to keep warm this winter or want to put it towards something larger like a piece of furniture. Whatever you the case, good luck! a Rafflecopter giveaway
It’s been a few months since I’ve shared any recipes, so I’m here to make up for it four-fold with a fantastic quartet of cocktails. I promise you every last one is delicious and the most complicated of the bunch includes only three ingredients. (Seriously!) The star of each recipe is one of VitaFrute‘s four organic ready-to-drink cocktails that allow you to step away from the bar cart and enjoy a hassle-free get together this holiday season!
Pour 2.5 oz VitaFrute Lemonade and 2.5 oz prosecco into each of two coupes. Garnish with a thin slice of lemon and enjoy!
Pear Nectar Margarita
• 10 oz VitaFrute Margarita
• 2 oz pear nectar
Pour 5 oz VitaFrute Margarita and 1 oz pear nectar into each of two cocktail glasses. Garnish with a slice of pear and a dash of ground ginger if you’re feeling adventurous.
Apple Cider Cosmopolitan
• 6 oz VitaFrute Cosmopolitan
• 4 oz fresh apple cider
Pour 3 oz VitaFrute Cosmopolitan and 2 oz apple cider into each of two rocks glasses. Garnish with a slice of juicy orange.
Scoop vanilla ice cream into two parfait glasses, then pour 3 oz Vitafrute Coconut Colada over each. Top with a sprinkle of coconut flakes, then add a spoon and straw to enjoy.
VitaFrute is teaming up with Kitchensurfing to give away a $1,000 and $500 towards a Kitchensurfing feast to make this a hassle-free holiday season! Imagine hosting that perfect holiday party without raising a finger or someone else preparing Christmas dinner for your family while you all focus on spending time together. You have until December 12th to pop over and enter for a chance to make this your best holiday season yet!
Disclaimer: I received product and compensation from VEEV Spirits. All words, opinions, and recipes are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that help keep Design Crush going!
If you’re creative in any way chances are you’ve daydreamed about making a career of it, and that’s exactly what Art, Inc. is about. It’s essentially a guide to making your dreams a reality and debunking the myth of the starving artist written by someone who has taken the plunge and lived to tell the tale. Learn about the ways artists can make a living from their art (you don’t have to be on a street corner with an easel, although that was always sort of my dream). Lisa shares her knowledge of licensing, sales, teaching, promoting, managing, and tons more. Not only from her own career, but from art world pros like Paula Scher, Nikki McClure, and Claire Desjardins who we’re going to dig a little deeper into below with an excerpt.
Montreal native Claire Desjardins spent her childhood summers in the countryside, where she discovered painting. But although she loved the art form, she chose to study business in college as a way to a stable, well-paying career. After graduating, she worked for ten years in technology and marketing. Several years ago, she set up a painting studio at home to get back in touch with her creative side, painting for the first time since she was a child. Over time, she moved from small to large canvases and began painting abstractly. By 2011, she was selling enough of her work to pursue art full-time. Since then, Claire has received grants to attend artist residencies at the Vermont Studio Center and Da Wang Culture Highland in Southeastern China. She is represented by Galerie Lydia Monaro in Montreal and Muse Gallery in Toronto and is a top-selling artist on Saatchi Online. Claire’s work can be found in both private and corporate collections around the world.
Lisa Congdon: As a self-taught abstract painter, how did you go from painting in your studio to selling work?
Claire Desjardins: I’d been painting for several years, and around the advent of Facebook, I started posting my work there. I had given a painting to a friend and then another friend of his saw it on Facebook and he contacted me about whether I had anything else for sale. That was how it all started. I began meeting a lot of people online who were interested in my art. That year I did quite well with my art, but I was still working for a marketing communications company. I worked only four days a week, so I would paint on my free weekday. My company was restructuring and merging, and I got laid off in 2011. But it was a perfect time for me to leave my job.
LC: How did you first get gallery representation?
CD: I sold a painting to one of my fans on Facebook. It was one of my first paintings that I had sold to someone I didn’t even know, so it was pretty exciting. I made sure that I really took care of her. I packed the painting properly, sent it with a booklet of my art, and called her to make sure everything went smoothly. Sometime later, I received an email from Muse Gallery in Toronto. Apparently, the woman from Facebook who bought my painting lived around the corner from the gallery and had told them about me. The gallery owner looked me up, liked what he saw, and contacted me to work on an artist agreement together. I did some research on them and called other artists who the gallery represented. I asked them about their relationships with the gallery and eventually, it all came together. I borrowed my father’s minivan and drove a bunch of paintings to Toronto! They have represented me since and have given me a couple of solo shows, too.
LC: Right around the time you left your job, Anthropologie contacted you. They sell your original paintings and license your paintings to make prints and for use on their products. How did this relationship come about? What are the advantages and disadvantages of working with a big company to sell and license your work?
CD: It all began one day when I got an email—and in the subject line it said “Anthropologie Interest.” They were looking for local artists to feature on the walls and windows of the new Montreal store. Four of their buyers came to my studio. I heard that they had read about me on Mocoloco.com.
There are both advantages and disadvantages to working with a large company. The main and obvious advantage is the exposure of my art. Other advantages include the additional revenue, as well as seeing my art on different products. The disadvantage is less obvious; it’s that a small portion of the artistic community came to perceive my art as too commercial or that I’m “selling out.”
LC: What is your main mode for selling original work now?
CD: By far, I make most of my sales online. Specifically, I’ve had success with Saatchi Online. In order to nurture this relationship, I try to keep up with my social networking as much as possible. This is a very important component to my job, as it’s the only advertising I can afford (it’s mostly free!), and it reaches so many people. Whenever I post a new painting online, I make sure to link it to a page that allows people to purchase my art, like Saatchi Online. I make sure that I give them credit for the good things that they do, in a timely fashion. So if they include one of my pieces on their home page, I make sure that I blurt it out for all to read, on all my social media like Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Twitter.
LC: You are an advocate for signed agreements— whether in licensing or when you work with galleries. Why are they important?
CD: When you sell or license your art, money and image rights are involved, so spelling out the rules in advance helps to manage expectations and eliminate surprises later on. It protects both the artist and the reseller. Proposing the writing of an agreement should not be perceived as an unfriendly gesture or an indication of mistrust. In fact, it should be considered an act of ensuring mutual understanding. We all have contracts with our cable or cell phone companies, so why wouldn’t you have an agreement with the resellers of your art, whether they are galleries, agents, or commercial companies? The exercise of writing an agreement will raise many questions that had not been thought about before. Those questions can be imperative in terms of the health and sustainability of the relationship.
And once again here’s the fun part – two of you have the chance to win a copy of Art, Inc! Whether you’re an aspiring artist or know someone who aims to be this book is the guide you’ll want at arm’s reach. You have until midnight CST Sunday, August 24th to toss your hat into the ring! a Rafflecopter giveaway
I’m a big time fan of Brooklyn-based designer and artist Rebecca Atwood, so I’m over the moon about this week’s giveaway. The creation of Rebecca’s original collection of home textiles as a process starts with her sketchbook: drawing, painting, creating collages, and testing colors. Then each piece is created as part of a small batch edition with an eye towards hand dying, printing, and painting to retain the integrity of the original concept. The unpredictability of the dye is whole heartedly embraced as well as the variations that naturally occur.
Rebecca has such a keen eye for color and texture, nowhere does this show more than in her pillow collection. I was especially drawn to her shibori collection with its vast pattern variations from pillow to pillow. The fabric was created using a modified version of the traditional shibori technique which involves folding the fabric into rectangles before dying to create the gridded end result.
I’d had my eye out for a pouf that I loved for over a year when Loom Decor reached out about their impressive collection of customizable silhouettes and 400+ fabric options. (And it doesn’t stop there, you can also customize a variety of pillow styles, poufs, bedding, table top or even create your own custom window treatments.) After scanning through all of the fabrics I knew immediately that the Optrix pattern was the one for me. It provides a perfect graphic punch that adds some interest to the otherwise solid pieces in my living room.
The pouf showed up on my doorstep in about two weeks, which is super fast for anything customized. Like lightning! It measures 24 x 24 x 13″ and has already served multiple purposed around my space. My favorite is above, where I sit to work when I’m in the living room. I love propping my legs up on it, basically converting part of my sofa into a chaise. I’ve also used it as extra seating and even a stand-in coffee table (mine is being repaired) by simply placing a large tray on top. And I love that Loom Decor offers a range of price points with their fabric offerings — basic, prime, and luxe — which allow customers to find pieces that fit within their budgets.
Now’s your chance to tap into Loom Decor‘s high-end, luxurious home textiles – they even offer personalized decorating assistance! Two lucky Design Crush readers will win $100 towards the custom piece of your choice. Hop over to the official giveaway page to enter, you have until July 20th!
This summer BRIKA has teamed up with their artisans and designers to create eight exclusive summer necklaces to amp up your warm weather style. I was lucky enough to receive The Pamela Necklace – each one is named after their maker – by Totem Color Block. It’s a fresh, fun, and feminine pastel piece that pairs well with the plethora of whites, blacks, and neutrals I tend to wear most.
Surprisingly shop owner Pamela Foeckler has been designing jewelry for just over a year after a decade of working as an art conservationist. Her minimal and colorful aesthetic were honed while earning her degree in sculptural and architectural history, and what was once deemed too “eccentric” now lends itself well to her jewelry designs.