Saturday, December 15, 2012

Inspirations and Diversions:
The Creative Internet

Our friends at John James sent us this link: The Creative Internet (106 things). Here are a few of our favourites:
  • " johnny cash project:
    Chris Milk collaborated with Aaron Koblin and Mr Doob to allow Johnny Cash fans to draw each frame for Johnny Cash's final video.

    The Johnny Cash Project"

  • "splicing:
    Pogo from Perth uses old cartoons - or footage of his mum in the garden - to make beautiful records"

  • "life in a day:
    What happens when you ask everyone in the world to take a video of their life on the same day? A project with Kevin McDonald, Ridley Scott and many more."

  • "portfolio mapping:
    Designers create portfolios using maps
    Stas Kulesh"

Enjoy your weekend!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Inspirations and Diversions:
Set Design and Soundtrack
for a New Generation

We're working on new set designs for the Stollery Children's Hospital Foundation's Snowflake Gala. This is our 5th year working with them, and is guaranteed to be our most stupendous, exciting and magical year yet! The theme for 2012 is Vintage Circus, and I'm creating signage templates for the feature auction using circus inspired fonts, which we'll then project onto wood on a large scale and paint in the Gala's theme colours of deep purple, cranberry, cream, and red. Some of the fonts I'm using include: Circus, Coney Island, Circus Ornate, Romantiques, Rosewood Std and Carnivalee Freakshow (pictured in order above). We're also creating harlequin patterned backdrops, pennant banners, and ringmaster platforms.

I can hardly wait to see the finished designs. In the meantime, enjoy a selection from the playlist I created for my daughter Riven Maru Scott's baby shower. We'll be posting photos from that event in the coming weeks, thanks to the sweet and amazing talents of Susan at Picture That.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Inspirations and Diversions:
He Saw It,
He Loved It,
He Ate It

via Chris Yoon via acehotel:
“Once a little boy sent me a charming card with a little drawing on it. I loved it. I answer all my children’s letters — sometimes very hastily — but this one I lingered over. I sent him a card and I drew a picture of a Wild Thing on it. I wrote, “Dear Jim: I loved your card.” Then I got a letter back from his mother and she said, “Jim loved your card so much he ate it.” That to me was one of the highest compliments I’ve ever received. He didn’t care that it was an original Maurice Sendak drawing or anything. He saw it, he loved it, he ate it.”

Maurice Sendak, rest in peace.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The Bigger Picture:
Comfort Beyond Decals and Fuzz

A nursery for the budding Bohemian? (via A Detailed House)

My husband and I are expecting our first child, and she's due in about a month. The most common question I get asked, after
  1. Do you know what you're having? Likely a girl, but we're not 100% sure. And no, we have no preference.
  2. Are you excited? Yes. Excited, terrified and content all at the same time.
  3. Can I touch your belly? Ha ha! Yes.
is: have you started decorating the nursery? Being someone who creates beautiful and inviting spaces for a living, people are always surprised when I answer no. Aaron and I have our reasons, of course. (Among them, we would like to try co-sleeping, aka sleep sharing, and we're renovating our house and are currently using the potential nursery space as a much needed office.) But while we have no plans for a nursery as yet, this much-anticipated addition to our family has me thinking deeply and often about notions of comfort and home. What makes the "perfect" space?

It's never too early to culture your baby.
That painting above the crib is like the love child of Mark Mullin and Fiona Rae.
(via A Detailed House)

In addition to the practical issues of square metres and child rearing, part of what's holding me back is the strangeness of designing and building a space for someone I have yet to meet (and I say that as a reflection of my own creative process, and not in judgement of the many loving parents who've devoted themselves to nursery building pre-baby-arrival). Even with naming our baby, yes, we have some names chosen, but Aaron and I are not attached to any of them, and we'll happily pick an as yet unconsidered name should she (or he) not suit Stella or Mercer or Cougar.

Do baby girls dictate pink? Would you raise a boy in this room? (via A Detailed House)
Serenity now. Would our baby appreciate an all white space?
Especially one with furniture inspired by French and Swedish 18th century design.
This baby may become an antiques dealer or furniture historian.
(via Chic Shack)
Or maybe she'd prefer a jolt of colour to go with her typography lesson.
The baby in this room may design your wedding invitations some day.
(via A Detailed House)

Above two photos: Kennedy era White House nurseries (via Blue Badger)
Is this how you nurture future lawyers and publishers?
Is perfect colour coordination the key to comfort?

What should I be looking or asking for (if anything at all)? Taking stock of my own life, I have so much. We live well, in a beautiful home, we've never gone hungry, and we enjoy the love and company of a wide circle of family, friends and colleagues. Our basic needs of food, water and shelter are more than satisfied, and we can afford luxuries like a reliable vehicle, travel abroad, and a nice glass of wine with dinner (though only Aaron enjoys that last one, at the moment).

Although our baby is still but a wriggle in my belly, already, so many people have shown us much generosity. My parents are giving us a crib, my aunt found us a stroller, Aaron's parents will make us something beautiful, fellow parents and friends have offered and given us plenty of beautiful clothes and tiny shoes, my sister stumbled on a whale poster years ago that is perfect for a future nursery, a few toys have found their way into our home, and even the lovely people we work with can't resist showering us with cute and fluffy dresses. (You may recall this sweet purple party frock, given to us by Gay Derk at Derks and Bridal Fantasy.)

A pale and interesting nursery, with a capiz shell pendant light (likely from the Philippines),
French bergère chair and white Moroccan poufs for the tiny world traveller.
(via A Detailed House)
Don't get me wrong. At some point, when our child needs her own space, we will make one for her. And we are very fortunate to have the resources, time, and yes, expertise to make it comfortable, functional and beautiful. But I know that when that time comes, the creation of that space will not be a matter of ticking off a shopping list or completing a set of tasks. Creating the perfect space isn't about completing a checklist. Ultimately, comfort is about appreciation; comfort is a state of mind.

Friday, July 13, 2012

On The Shelf:
"Self Portrait in a Velvet Dress"

"One's wardrobe reveals one's politics;
it is the story one lives by;
it is one's symbolic self "

The latest addition to the ID BOHEMIA library is "Self Portrait in a Velvet Dress - Frida's Wardrobe", a book we discovered in the airport on our way home from a trip to San Francisco. Though I wouldn't presume to judge anyone by the clothes they wear, I've long believed that paying attention to a person's taste, style and how they choose to present themselves, can provide valuable insight into how that person thinks, and how they understand themselves and the world around them. There are many books on Frida's paintings, but as far as I know, this is the first and only book on Frida's wardrobe.

I first became intrigued by Frida's art and fashion choices after seeing Julie Taymor's "Frida". In an interview I later read about the film, Julie Weiss, the costume designer, mentioned several pairs of earrings she'd found in the Mexican open air markets: drop earrings in gold and silver, some with little skulls and bones. Weiss added that Frida would never have worn such earrings in real life, as she viewed her style very politically and preferred traditional Mexican jewellery. That is, antique and vintage necklaces, rings, bracelets and earrings favoured by people indigenous to Mexico.

 I can't say much about the book yet, as I plan to read it this weekend. Suffice it to say, though, I always look forward to time in the sun with a good book. And I hope you enjoy it as much as I plan to.

Have you read this book already? Send me an email! I'd love to hear your thoughts.


Though this isn't the interview I was referring to, here is another article on the politics of Frida's fashion:

Monday, May 14, 2012

Sneak Peek: My Office

Following up to my earlier post, here are a few snapshots of my "new" office.

A hand-carved candlestick from India, a massive Boston fern
and a small wicker basket that reminds me of Asia

A view of my desk. That fern adds a lot of height!

Two more wooden candleholders and two prints.
On the left is "River Valley Skyline" by architect and friend Darren Radbourne
and on the right is a print by my sister Erin Ignacio (aka John James), a graphic designer.

Pens, markers and thumbtacks neatly contained in pottery vessels.
I love the textures and shapes of hand-thrown pottery.

Enjoy your week!

Friday, May 11, 2012

Aesthetic Philosophy:
Organise My Office
Organise My Mind

“Order is the shape upon which beauty depends.”

Pearl S. Buck, author of The Good Earth

Cleaned out and refreshed my office yesterday. Though wedding season is underway, spring has me wanting to spend all my hours frolicking outdoors, and I decided my work space needed a lift to entice me indoors and allow me some much needed focus. As well, the last several months have brought a lot of personal and professional change (our business is growing and we're expecting our first child, among other things), and I wanted a space that reflected my evolving perspective and growth. In addition to the usual dusting, vacuuming and organising, I turned to the internet for a little aesthetic direction. Here are the highlights of what I found.




In reviewing my collection of inspiration images, I noticed a personal affinity for
  • warm neutrals
  • industrial vintage
  • plants
  • height (the entire space is addressed, from floor to ceiling)
  • texture 
  • contrast (particularly light and dark, but also textural contrast)
  • repetition
  • and natural materials (especially wood, wicker and leather)
So, after clearing out the cobwebs and catching up on filing, I stripped my office down to its essentials and took a cool and careful look at what remained. Considering the existing wire baskets, vintage filing cabinets, black 40/4 desk chair, fir floors and dark-stained oak trim, the most conspicuous thing missing from my office was a plant of some kind, so adding one became my first priority.

I've learned from experience that my office is a graveyard for houseplants (see foot note), so I rescued a huge silk Boston fern from storage. I arranged it atop a filing cabinet in a glass pedestal vase, which I lined with elephant grass to hide the stem. With its leaves grazing the ceiling, the fern brings a much appreciated element of natural sophistication and drama to my work space. Adding a carved wooden candlestick eased the visual transition from the fern to the filing cabinet, while a small woven basket rounded out the tableau. Still, my office needed just a touch more. The textures and connotations of fern, grass, wood and wicker certainly helped, but the room still wasn't as warm and inviting as I wanted it to be. What my office needed was a greater sense of the handmade.

“Balance is beautiful.”
Miyoko Ohno, Japanese interior designer turned bridge designer

Since I really liked the colour and feel of the one candlestick, I brought in two more. Though they're all quite different stylistically, they're also all made of wood and massive, which unifies them. The first is from India, very tall, and carved with leaves (very Bohemian). The other two are comparatively short, but quite thick and turned wood; one is very Mid-Century and simple, while the other has a rustic Craftsman vibe to it. I grouped those two next to an amazing print created by my sister years ago. Their varied wood tones play off the deep oranges, reds and ambers in the print really nicely, and their forms read as sculpture in my mostly utilitarian space.

I also upgraded my small stuff storage. Pens, markers and thumbtacks found new homes within a selection of hand-thrown pottery. Their simple shapes, subtle textures and neutral colours are much more pleasing to my eye than straight-out-of-the-office-supply-store containers with "notice me!" printed labels, and so much can be said about the heft and tactility of clay vs. plastic. Now, all I have left is to finish repainting a lamp I picked up years ago, and put away my current (and much loved) classic Winnie the Pooh lamp for the nursery.

“There is not one big cosmic meaning for all, there is only the meaning we each give to our life, an individual meaning, an individual plot, like an individual novel, a book for each person.”

“Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful”

The old office, while functional, had diminished to little more than the sum of its most useful parts, the end result of a busy Christmas season and a new year filled with travel, baby, and business and personal development. My new office reflects the present me and my state of mind much more—my work space and head space are definitely more streamlined, more confident, and yes, even more artful. When I have a chance, I'll snap a few pictures to show you what I've accomplished. In the meantime, it's nose to the grindstone. These banquet tables won't lay out themselves!

Find more inspiration (with captions!) on my Pinterest board: My dream studio and workspace.

For more quotes like the ones in this blog and an intriguing look at the zen of organising, check out: The Home Office Organizer (I found "Moving Forward In Your Home Office" particularly useful).

foot note: Ah, the houseplant graveyard. It wasn't for lack of trying. Of the two windows in my office, one faces north and the other faces east, but the east-facing window is largely shaded by a towering elm tree in our backyard. I get a few hours of direct morning sunshine, and a fair a bit of indirect light, but not quite enough to sustain the large, leafy plants I quiver for.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

A Fantasy Garden Party
& Modern Venetian Masquerade

Bridal Fantasy recently released a sneak preview of two editorials for the 2012 issue, for which ID BOHEMIA created the set designs. Enjoy!

A Fantasy Garden Party (see our inspiration board Fantasy Garden Party on Pinterest)

A Modern Venetian Masquerade (see our inspiration board Venetian Modern on Pinterest)

Look for the 2012 issue of Bridal Fantasy Magazine on newsstands later this January! At that time, we'll post some behinds the scenes photos of the sets and a list of products, including Foo dogs from Peking Lounge in Vancouver, Palace Table Architecture and Midas Cutlery from 29 Armstrong, and diamonds and drapery from SITE 6 Event, Fabric and Visual Solutions. (The 2011 issue is available online - see our work in "Ode to Grace" starting on p. 118, and "Flaunt Your Feathers" starting on p. 130, with photography by Curtis Comeau and Grant Olson.)

In related news, ID BOHEMIA will be participating in the Bridal Fantasy bridal show, taking place on Sunday, January 22 at the Edmonton Expo Centre. Come by our booth and say hi!

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