Sunday, May 8, 2011

BUCOP Clinic

This past week has been very hectic as I have been finishing a project for BUCOP, or Butler University Community Outreach Pharmacy. Our goal for this project was to create two material palettes, one high end and one low end, and to create three different floor plans using these palettes. My mood board was based on technology and architecture, with emphasis on chrome and blue hues. I really enjoyed this project, despite the fact that I had to free hand sketch!

To view the BUCOP Presentation, visit:

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Yay Wallpaper!

I have never really been a fan of wallpaper. I think it's because my parents put hideous wallpaper all over our house in the early 90's. Thankfully, Graham & Brown have revamped traditional wallpaper to make it modern and fun. Their paper comes in a variety of prints, from floral and geometric, to picture frames and even crowns to celebrate the Royal Wedding. It's also relatively inexpensive, which is a definite plus. They have definitely changed the way I feel about wallpaper!

To view the Graham & Brown collections, visit:

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

The New Linoleum

I have been tirelessly trying to find sustainable products for our current studio project and came across this product. It's called Marmoleum. This product is like linoleum, but is made with natural ingredients without any harmful VOC's or other toxic chemicals. The product is also installed with solvent free adhesives. Since we are working on a heathcare clinic, I was concerned about the bacteria growth, but this product has natural bactericidal properties that prevent micro-organisms including Salmonella, Typhimurium, and Staphylococcus Aureus, which means that people won't get sick while trying to get well at my clinic. It is also the first floor covering to receive the Asthma & Allergy Friendly certification and is truly a SMART certified sustainable product. What's not to like about this product?
To read about Marmoleum and other sustainable products, visit:

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter! This year, my friend Carolyn and I decided to help the Easter Bunny out by hiding eggs in Studio. They are EVERYWHERE! I even think Carolyn hid one in a blind. I was doing some research about the holiday and found out that Easter is the second biggest holiday , with Halloween being number one. Also, there are more than 700 million Peeps made each year for the Easter season. That's a lot of marshmallow! I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday and didn't eat too much candy!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

"Look Better Naked"

As many of you know, I have started my weight loss journey this week. This means saying goodbye to the sofa and hello to the gym. Like many people, I personally hate going to the gym, until I saw this design. The David Barton Gym in New York was recently opened, thanks
to Studio Sofield and Gensler. The
gym looks more like a hip night
club thanks to the use
of unique lighting, bright/bold colors, unique textiles
and accessories, and even a disco ball DJ booth. This building is 37,000 sq. ft. and is four
levels. As William Sofield says, "So many other gyms are about fluorescents and Clorox" and I personally believe he has set his gyms away from that stereotype. I would definitely want to work out at this gym because I personally feel like I could workout while getting my groove on!

To read the article about the David Barton Gym and view more images of the space, visit:

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Barbie's Dream Chair

Spring is here, which means that it's time to spend more time outdoors in the sunshine. If you're like me, this means getting your lounge chair out of storage and realizing that it may be time to invest in some new outdoor seating. Bobby Berk Home has created a new outdoor chair that is made out of recyclable linear polyethylene. This seating, named Queen of
Love Fancy Army, was inspired by the Louis XV style furniture. This chair looks like it should be placed at the Barbie Dream House in Malibu instead of someone's backyard, but if you are looking to add a bit of whimsical to your backyard, don't worry, it comes in black! So find your shades, put some sunscreen on, and go buy this chair as a way to officially welcome
back spring!

To read more about this chair, visit:

To see images of Barbie's Malibu Dream House, visit:

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Wise Owl Books

Reception Area

Open Office Area

Conference Room Area

This past week, my time has pretty much been spent working on my studio project for a company called Wise Owl Books. This publishing company has about seventy five employees (including a cat and dog) and were moving into a space that was around twenty thousand square feet. The main issues with this space were the fact that not only was the height of this space twenty two feet, but it had a stepped foundation of two feet two times in the space. This project helped me see what my weaknesses and strengths are as well as helped me improve my Photoshop skills. I am definitely happy this project is over!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

NeoCon 2011

I am extremely excited to be going to NeoCon this year. Not only do you visit various manufacturer showrooms there, but you also get to see what's up and coming for the year in terms of furniture and textiles. As someone who gets excited about specifying textiles an furniture, I feel that this experience will be a vital for my growth as a designer. I also think that it will be beneficial for my senior project, as there will be a variety of opportunities to meet vendors, which will be helpful in receiving samples or updates on new products. Will I see you there?

To visit the NeoCon website, visit:

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Changing The Way We Learn

The way we communicate has drastically changed over the last years. Instead of calling, we text. Instead of writing a letter, we email. This change in technology has also changed the way we learn. Instead of sitting at a desk, obtaining information, and regurgitating it when necessary, we use networking, collaboration, and technology to help us gain knowledge. So why haven't desks been changed? Steelcase has answered this question by creating a new classroom chair called Node. This chair is designed not only for collaboration, but for team based learning. It also can be used by either right or left hand students, which is a plus. This desk helps students keep engaged, and is flexible for those who fidget, like myself. There is plenty of storage underneath, making moving easier and faster. It adjusts to the individual as well, so that you are comfortable, no matter what your body shape is. What do you think? Would this help you be more engaged in a classroom setting?

For a video about Node and its application in a classroom, visit:

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Snail Success

Talk abut being "shell shocked"! The Nautilus, located in Mexico City, Mexico, designed by Javier Senosiain, was inspired by Frank Lloyd Wright and Gaudi when designing this home. He calls his concept bio-architecture, in which organic forms and natural principles remind us of our history, tradition, and cultural roots, creating simplistic and artistic living for his clients. What do you think? Would you like to like in a shell?

To learn more about Javier Senosiain and his bio-architecture, visit:

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Therapy in a Chair

Have you ever wanted to create your own chair, but didn't know how? Do you want to release your built-up anger in a productive way? If you answered yes to any of those questions, then let me introduce you to the Do Hit Chair. Designed by Marijn van der Poll, this chair comes to you as a stainless steel block with a hammer included. In a matter of minutes (or hours depending on what you want your chair to look like), you can create a unique piece of furniture that will be an individual as you are.

To see how it's done, visit:

For more information about the Do Hit Chair, visit:

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Green Roofs at Work

Here is a great example of a green roof being used in Indianapolis, IN at the pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly. The green roof spans 20,600 sq. ft. and is not only aesthetically pleasing to their employees, but saves the company money in terms of heating and cooling as well as saving the Indianapolis area money by diverting 446,000 gallons of water per year.

To read the blog about Lilly's green roof as well as an informational video about the project, visit:

To see what other projects Lilly is doing to become environmentally friendly, visit:

Saturday, February 19, 2011

The New 3-Form

For many of us, 3-form is the ultimate design product. It's lightweight, has an enormous selection, and is readily available. Although it is a great product, I for one am getting kind of tired of using this product for every project. I present to you a new product called Livinglass. What is so awesome about this product, besides being counted for LEED points, is that it is a glass product with unique fillers. For example, you can choose from a cork, bamboo, uniquely colored foils, starfish, pearls, geodes, sand dollars, flora and fauna, etc. This is such a fun product because you can bring the exteriors in and really transform a space.
It comes in 3 options:
  • Luxe – The original patented luxury line of Livinglass panels captures 3 dimensional materials between sheets of clear luminous glass.
  • Light – The beauty of Livinglass, now thinner, lighter and more budget friendly. Protect the environment and earn LEEDS credits with our 100% recycled resin and recycled glass.
  • Curves – Livinglass offers new design freedom with our luxurious Curves.
It comes in either recycled glass or resin. What's also unique about this product is that it's anti-microbial, fire resistant, moisture, UV, and chemical resistant, and can be used for anything, from flooring, to suspended ceilings, lighting, and even furniture. So the next time you are picking materials for a project, put down the 3-form and try Livinglass. You'll be glad you did!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Help Enhance Creative Thinking

I was looking up sustainable projects for my studio project, when I came across this product. It's called Idea Paint. What is so amazing on this product is that it is a water-based paint that is painted directly to the wall. For a commercial space, it's actually ASTM E-84 compliant and lasts around 3 years, which is actually longer than a standard dry erase board. It can even restore old dry-erase boards so you don't have to throw them out. What I am most impressed about is that they researched how their product was shipped and found out that it is better for the environment because it uses less materials to ship it (meaning less materials to recycle or throw in a landfill) and it uses less fuel because their product is light and small. They also state that "Many dry-erase surfaces contain formaldehyde, which slowly releases gas and diminishes indoor air quality for the life of the product. Idea Paint is formaldehyde-free, conforms to all U.S. EPA regulations (including California) and does not produce any harmful gas once it’s dry." I recommend going to their website as there are case studies as well as a CSI Guide Spec on their PRO paint, which is beneficial when selecting materials/finishes for a project. In the long run, this will help cut down the use of paper products because your clients will no longer have to rely on post-its and scrap paper. What's not to love about this product?

For more information about Idea Paint, visit

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Oh Tom Hanks!

Today I was told about a website that is absolutely hilarious. If you are a fan of Tom Hanks like I am, you will truly enjoy this site. It's called Tom Hanks is a Lot of Animals. What does this have to do with design? Absolutely nothing! I am just starting to get cabin fever from all the snow and ice that hit the area, so I thought this would lighten the mood and make everyone's day just a bit more cheerful. Enjoy.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

You Are My Inspiration__________

One of my all time favorite movies is the 1959 movie, "Pillow Talk" with Doris Day and Rock Hudson. Jan Morrow (Day) is an interior decorator and shares a party line with Brad Allen (Hudson) who is a musician/playboy. I don't want to give too much information so that if you watch the movie, the plot won't be spoiled, but one of my favorite parts of the movie is when Jan re-decorates Brad's apartment.

As you can see, it's a Moroccan theme...gone wrong.

My favorite part of the space is the the use of bright colors and textures. Although this is pretty much one of the tackiest interiors I have seen, I think it does have potential. I also love how it kind of feels Moulin Rouge-esque. However, I would definitely get rid of the moose head, as well as the Pepto Bismol pink piano and the nude statues by the stairs.

What's interesting is that some of the aspects in the apartment are actually seen today in interiors. So does that mean the phrase, "out with the old and in with the new" needs to be changed? What is really considered new in design?

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Electronic Wasteland...Are We Really THAT Advanced?

Today in my Sustainability class, we talked about values and norms and how the relate to our society in terms of sustainability. My professor was discussing how it is now the norm to see green recycling bins on the curb every week how it's frowned upon to not recycle. But the question becomes, where does all of our recycling go? When you recycle your electronics, such as computers and cell phones, where are they sent to and how are they broken down? There was an interesting 60 Minutes segment in 2008 which gave a possible a answer. According to Scott Pelley, the answer is China. Pelley's segment stated that we throw out 1,300 computers every day and throw out over 100 million cell phones every year. Electronic contain numerous toxic chemicals, like lead chromium, mercury, cadmium, and polyvinyl chlorides, which can cause not only kidney cancer, but significant brain damage. With our electronics, we are essentially poisoning others. In the town of Guiyu, families melt down electronics for gold. They also melt down plastics, which, according to the report, "Chlorinated and brominated plastics is known worldwide to cause the emission of polychlorinated and polybrominated dioxins". So essentially when we recycle, are we actually doing that act? Does this mean I will get rid of my iPhone or laptop computer? No. What it means though is that when recycling electronic items, be sure to do a little research to see where the recycled items actually go.

In the design world, we are all about creating spaces that are essentially, "bigger, better, faster, stronger". Technology is a key component in our civilization. How does this affect designers? With the constant change in technology, designers must get rid of the old. Make sure that you urge your clients to recycle responsibly as well as suggest maybe just making adjustments to their old systems, such as adding hardware to make it run faster, add memory, etc. (unless they are old, then recommend that they dispose of them properly and ethically). Albert Einstein one stated that, "It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has exceeded our humanity"...let's just hope that it doesn't end our humanity.

To see the 60 Minutes segment, "Electronic Wasteland", visit:

To read the segment, visit:;contentBody

To read a rebuttal about the segment, visit:

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Recipe For Good Design

Today I was going through some old cookbooks and started to think about how good design is like following a recipe. Sounds kind of crazy right? How can designing a space be like making chocolate chip cookies (by the way, I don't recommend making bacon chocolate chip cookies...they're kind of gross!)? Well, both use a step by step process of adding ingredients; if you forget an ingredient, your creation may be okay, but it won't be spectacular. All the aspects of the space have to combine to create perfect harmony. Take for example a retail space. You have your flooring and wall color, which is the the flour and sugar of a cookie recipe. They are kind of the base or beginning point of creating a space. Next comes the butter, egg, vanilla, and brown sugar. These are the "glue" of the space, such as shelving, reception area, seating, textiles, etc. which help make the space more coherent and put together...basically the structure of the space. Finally you have the chocolate chips, or the "main attraction" which could be a fun lighting fixture of art piece which not only creates a focal point, but ties the whole space together in to one cohesive design (you can't make chocolate chip cookies without chocolate chips, right?) If you can make cookies, you can make enticing spaces that people will want to continually come to. So the next time you are in a design funk and can't think of what to do, just grab a cookie and some milk, and you'll be just fine!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Ecological Footprint...How Bad is it Really?

I am currently taking class which focuses on Sustainability and had to take an Ecological Footprint Quiz to see how my actions impact the Earth. It was interesting to find out that my results were that if everyone lived the way I do, we would need 5.62 earths. This got me to designers, how much do we waste? How often do we use products that are from recycled materials? I know that this doesn't go with certain concepts, like Cradle to Cradle, but how much would that choice of using carpet made from recycled materials effect our world? Instead of choosing an item that has to be shipped from China, maybe using one that is made locally, or at least in the continental US. My goal for studio this semester is to truly try to use products that are more eco-friendly as well as local. Even choosing to use energy efficient lighting can make a difference.

To take the Ecological Footprint Quiz and what you can do to reduce your carbon footprint, visit

Thursday, January 20, 2011


"I was tired of working hard to be less bad. I wanted to be involved in making buildings, even products, with completely positive intentions."
-William McDonough

Yesterday, I watched an interesting documentary called Waste=Food, which explained the Cradle to Cradle design concept, created by William McDonough (an architect) and Michael Braungart (a chemist). The idea behind the Cradle to Cradle concept is that a normal life cycle is composed of cradle (where it began or where it came from) to grave (what the finished product is and when is it no longer used), but what happens to the products after we use them? They end up in a landfill or end up being reused for another product....but is that really helping our environment? McDonough uses a plastic water bottle as an example what really recycling is; when a bottle is recycled, it is taken apart and reused for another product, such as plastic wood boards...but what happens when the plastic wood is not longer needed? It is usually burned down to be reused, which emits chemicals into the atmosphere. (I bet you won't look at a plastic bottle the same again!) He explains this is more or less decycling, rather than recycling. Their solution to a more green environment is to use materials that really have no life cycle; it is continuous. For example, a textile company using natural fibers, rather than synthetic, and non-chemical dyes for their materials. With the scraps of the materials, they can be combined to form a type of wool material for farmers to cover crops, such as strawberries. This provides not only nutrients for the food, but a productive way to get rid of waste. For interior design, this means that spaces can be renovated more often, due to the fact that it helps the earth, rather than harms it. This can also mean that buildings will be created more efficiently in terms lighting and insulation through the use of green roofs and natural lighting, thereby increasing worker productivity and satisfaction in the workplace. It's a win-win why don't we do this now?

More info on Cradle to Cradle: