Takin’ a minute…

January 13, 2022

on this cold, gray day to do a bit of daydreaming and sort through some inspiration for upcoming projects.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Top to bottom:

Vintage midcentury Italian fixture by Stilnovo   photo via Plastolux

Modern landscaping   photo via: Remash Tumblr 

Vintage modern Paul McCobb Planners group desk  photo via Plastolux

Simple concrete courtyard   photo: Remash Tumblr

Public art installation at the London Fruit and Wool Exchange   photo via Plastolux

Vladimir Kagan Korduda Sofa   photo via Plastolux

A gorgeous heart oak cube…perfect.   photo via Plastolux

Vintage 60’s Platner Lounge Chair reimagined in Zebra.    Photo via Plastolux

Minimalist Palm Springs residence by the Kaplan Group   photo via Plastolux

 

 

 

 

New Year,

January 9, 2022

new outlook. It’s always great to start the New Year armed with what you need to tackle whatever comes your way. A new yearly calendar ( yes, old school ) a handful of new Uniballs and black Sharpies and a crisp blank journal is where I always start. That’s pretty much all you need to do a quick jot of your goals, plans, and inspiration, contained for easy reference. That covered, maybe hone and old skill or develop a new one to help you work your way through the day smarter, not harder. And, if you’re still working from home, maybe treat yourself a little and up the business casual with some cashmere…a classic crew neck sweater for the waist up...cashmere sweatpants from the waist down. 2022, we’re ready for ya.

 

 

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photos 1 & 3: gp

Clearly,

December 29, 2021

with all that’s going on in the world….yes, more bad news. We have apparently run out of colors! Imagine that. Which brings me to Very Peri, Pantone’s pick for color of the year 2022. Very Peri, a color that the Pantone Color Institute created specifically for this annual honor. Didn’t we already have a Periwinkle? I thought we did. And, if memory serves, it was a distinctive member of the Crayola collection for decades. Will we be seeing this ” new ” shade everywhere next year? Who knows. My guess is that it will follow in the footsteps of Pantone’s flop of 2015…Marsala. Remember that dud?

 

If you’d like to learn more about Very Peri, read the words of Leatrice Eiseman, extolling the qualities of this new hue. Fair warning…it’s a snooze fest.  https://www.pantone.com/color-of-the-year-2022

Very Peri photo: Pantone.com

Crayola Periwinkle photo: ColumbiaCoatings.com

If you’d like to revisit Marsala…https://simplequietmodern.com/2014/12/18/marsala-a-swing-and-a-miss/

 

Mixed Emotions

December 22, 2021

While I hate the coming of the first day of Winter, I do love what follows. Today marks the day of the year with the least amount of daylight…the Winter Solstice. Good news is that tomorrow will be another story. From this point on, each day will have an increased amount of daylight leading us directly to Spring. And, that my friends is worth celebrating. Tradition would have us festooning the place with evergreens, lighting candles in doors and building a roaring fire outdoors and gathering together to embrace hope within the darkness. A good idea once again while the newest Covid variant threatens to squash our holiday plans.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

From the top:

A simple votive candle placed in a bubbled glass vase casts a magnified and magical glow.

If you are lucky enough to find my absolute favorites, white tulips, buy them. There is nothing else like them to draw our thoughts to Spring. White Fringed and Parrot varieties are particularly special.

I do not need an excuse like the Winter Solstice to stoke up a bonfire, but it doesn’t hurt.

You might take a modern turn at using a supermarket Poinsettia as a cut flower. White for the Solstice would be my choice.  Photo: Gardenista

A hearty warming dish like this Farro Porcini Risotto Comes together quickly and would be a fitting addition to the celebration. I added a little shortcut to this already simple recipe from Martha Stewart, https://www.marthastewart.com/312975/farro-and-porcini-risotto, by using 1/2 jar of  Trader Joe’s Pesto Alla Genovese with the parsley and toasted walnuts and an additional splash of olive oil.

Doing appropriate double duty, this white Helebore variety will play nicely with your other seasonal decorations before being planted outdoors to grace the garden with the season’s first blooms next year.

The perfect finish to any Winter gathering might just be a classic Brandy Stinger… equal parts Brandy and white Creme de Menthe. In this case, on the rocks. Cheers!

except where noted all photos: gp

 

 

Deck Those Halls

December 15, 2021

Even if you’re still keeping a low profile during our second Covid Christmas, it’s important for our over all well being to keep those holiday traditions alive. Now’s the time to deck those halls and get into the spirit in earnest. Whatever direction you choose, do something…a string of lights…a vase of seasonal branches…a bowl of ornaments. The simplest modern touch can still say Merry Christmas.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Top to bottom:

A sheet of plywood, a string of lights and a few screws. Boom! My absolute favorite Christmas tree alternative. If you don’t have the space for a fresh tree, then this is the simplequietmodern next best thing. Photo: https://apairandasparediy.com/2015/12/diy-string-light-christmas-tree/

This wreath of simply assorted cones makes a lovely modern yet natural statement that could take you from Thanksgiving to the Spring thaw. photo: https://www.shopterrain.com/

Gettin’ groovy with a modern Christmas color scheme? These brightly colored glass ornaments can help inspire a vintage Christmas look be it the 50’s , 60’s or 70’s.  https://www.shopterrain.com/

A quick edit from a box of vintage mid-century ornaments will add some nostalgic modern charm. photo: gp

Like a Bertoia sculpture fabricated on a dime. These large 60’s looking stars are simply a handful of bamboo skewers stuck into a Styrofoam ball with the quickest spritz of gold paint. You could knock out a dozen of them and make a simplequitmodern holiday statement for just a few bucks. photo: gp

Nothing says simple and Christmas like an unadorned Magnolia wreath.  https://www.shopterrain.com/

If you have vases to fill, fill them simply and lavishly with the selection of one simple material. In this case, Ilex. These striking branches studded with bright red berries arranged in clear glass cylinders will certainly inject Christmas cheer into any modern interior. Photo: gp

More holiday color play, this time in a 60’s blue-green direction. I remember as a kid thinking this look was pretty swanky.  More solid color glass ornaments from https://www.shopterrain.com/ , the assorted vintage ornaments photo: gp

Look around. A big box of beautiful pine cones can be had for free if you know where to look. In my case it’s right outside my door. And, if the holidays have me running behind, a quick forage will fill multiple bowls, providing a simple natural beauty that only Mother Nature can provide. photo: gp

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s Been 10 Years

December 6, 2021

Yep, hard to believe, but this month marks the end of 10 years since the start of simplequietmodern. Ten years has brought a lot of posts, ideas and pictures. Let’s look back at December 2012 and see what we were up to, shall we? Here are a few favorites of yours…. a few of mine.

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Top to bottom:

A makeshift tree of fallen birch from the yard decorated in simple contrast with a collection of vintage glass ornaments in pink.

A tray of Ina Garten’s Gougere straight from the oven. A chilled bottle of champagne can’t be more than an arm’s length away.

Vintage Christmas ornaments… edited to this group of all silver and pink.

Fresh quince waiting to be cooked down into quince paste, or Membrillo. A welcome addition to any holiday charcuterie board.

While I could make them all year round I limit my favorite Espresso Hazelnut Cookies to Christmastime.

And, lastly… but most importantly, the arrival of my partner in crime, Baby Hambone Jaxon 3000. Quite simply the best.

photos: gp  Revisit all the posts here.   https://simplequietmodern.com/2012/12/

Bend it like….

December 2, 2021

Breuer. Clean simple modern design in home furnishings started way before the middle of the 20th century. Actually, the seating designs of Marcel Breuer appeared closer to the beginning of the last century. Yet, they held their ground throughout, and even in the early years inspired great modern masters like Ludwig Mies van der Rohe to interpret the simple bending of steel tubing into furniture designs of his own.  As fate would have it, the furniture designs of both of these icons have stood the test of time… still in production and as elegant as ever. You may recognize these pieces from their popularity in the 1970’s. Breuer’s Cesca chair seemed to be everywhere. Another 50 years later and we see their popularity on the rise once again. What’s there to say? Good is just good. And, while some things occasionally fade in popularity, modern classics like these never go out of style.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

top to bottom:

Marcel Breuer’s classic Wassily chair , Wassily chairs and Laccio tables , a gaggle of Cesca chairs with cane seats and backs, Cesca chairs in full upholstery, Knoll’s new introduction: Breuer’s MB Lounge Chair and a pile of Laccio coffee and end tables.

Next up: Mies van der Rohe’s  Bruno Chair, the MR Adjustable Chaise, MR Lounge Chair and MR Table, an MR  Lounge with and without arms and an MR Stool in tan leather.

all photos: https://www.knoll.com/

 

Better Get On It

November 13, 2021

With all of the talk about supply chain and shipping issues, now might just be the perfect time to get that Christmas shopping out of the way. Taking advantage of all of your online options will not only get the job done, there will be no standing in line waiting for the next cashier available to assist you. Early Black Friday pricing and free shipping only sweeten the deal. I gathered here a few of my simplequietmodern favorites for this season. So, pull out that credit card, mix yourself a festive cocktail, put your feet up and start shopping.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Preview of 6.5 Inch Cast Iron Skillet

 

 

 

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Top to bottom:

If a simple Brandy Stinger on the Rocks doesn’t put you in the Christmas shopping mood…what will?

simplequietmodern favorite is the Heath Ceramics Tall Modern Cup. In the 2021 Winter Seasonal collection it’s offered in Red Plum and Currant. When it’s not full of coffee, chai or hot chocolate, there isn’t a better container for a handful of seasonal blooms. photo: https://www.heathceramics.com/collections/heath-holiday

Perfect for anyone still bingeing the weekend away watching Netflix, a gorgeous velvet pillow from Knoll Textiles to get cozy with. This one is in Arezzo in colorway: Dolce. Photo: https://www.knoll.com/product/pillows-by-knolltextiles-shop?p=TP-K14421_1218

What’s not to love about a Baroque pearl?  Even better in this modern treatment…a simple gold filled ball chain threaded through a large hole by Ana Mari Ortega. And, if you’re feeling it, go with two to be worn together or threading both chains through both pearls. Photo: https://www.anamariortega.com/collections/fun-jewelry-necklaces

If you have the time, snagging a couple of skeins of Purl Soho’s Cashmere Tend and whipping up a luxurious scarf may be just the ticket for someone on your list. Or, gift the yarn itself and let them create their own. Added bonus, the Merino wool, Cashmere and nylon blend is washable and available in 18 colors. Photo:https://www.purlsoho.com/cashmere-tend.html

No one does a fragrance candle like Diptyque Paris. This limited edition Sapin captures  just what this holiday season needs…Pine and a hint of wood smoke. Perfect. photo: https://www.nordstrom.com/s/diptyque-sapin-candle-limited-edition

Also from Heath Ceramics Winter Seasonal Collection is this square tray in Chili. Add a few homemade Bourbon Balls to gild the lily. Photo: https://www.heathceramics.com/collections/heath-holiday Recipe for the Bourbon Balls, https://simplequietmodern.com/?s=bourbon+balls

People are definitely ready to celebrate the season…I’ve already seen lights glowing and tree lots stocked and open for business. I personally know the holidays have kicked in when I see these mixed evergreen wreaths available and my Trader Joes. You might pick up a few and surprise some friends, family or neighbors. The last year hasn’t been kind to any of us so that simple act of beauty might just make someone’s day.  Photo: gp

If someone on your list just loves a crispy fried egg… either on a burger, topping a salad or to start the day … this is the gift for them. From Lodge Cast Iron, a 6.5″ seasoned cast iron skillet. Photo: https://www.lodgecastiron.com/product/round-cast-iron-classic-skillet?sku=L3SK3 Eggs photo: gp

I couldn’t leave out the classic Bud Vase, again from Heath Ceramics Winter Seasonal Collection, in Cranberry.  A few twigs of Tallow berry and you’ve got a simple holiday statement that will take your through to the New Year. Photo: https://www.heathceramics.com/collections/heath-holiday  Tallow berry photo: gp

 

 

 

Finally

October 15, 2021

I know. Sometimes getting some things done for yourself gets pushed to the back burner while you put out someone else’s fire. That has been the case here with this vintage midcentury table by Brit designer T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings. While I have collected a nice group of pieces from those manufactured by Witticomb by this designer, they all came in pretty much pristine condition (for their age). This table, not so much. While I knew the issue was primarily the drying and flaking of the original varnish, it wasn’t something I wanted to tackle. So, as a treat to myself, I finally took it in for a little facelift. The end result was just what I had hoped for after a light sand, minimal color correction and new finish. If I’m lucky enough to find a mate for this table, trust me, I won’t be waiting nearly as long to put it’s best face forward.

photos: gp

Pull Up A Seat

October 8, 2021

I have never been a fan of barstools. At least tall barstools. I’ve always felt more comfortable in a chair. However, more often than not , I slip off to my office to check an email or  pay a bill while I’m in the middle of preparing dinner only to come back to the stove to disaster. This could have been easily averted had I chosen to not only use a mobile device, but, if I had a counter height stool on which to perch….one eye on the pot. I’ve got no excuse to finding a counter height stool that meets my design sensibility as there are now countless modern options available…be they new introductions or adjustments to their original midcentury incarnations. Below are five of my simplequietmodern favorites.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

from the top:

A midcentury classic. The Saarinen Executive chair realized in a counter height, available in Knoll Textile or leather cover. photo: https://www.knoll.com/product/saarinen-executive-stool-counter-height

The perfect modern take on a three legged stool, this tall stool in ebonized black walnut by Sawkille Furniture  photo: https://www.sawkille.com/seating-/drink-stool

This is a jewel indeed. Ethan Allen’s Jewel Counter Stool available in both textile and leather with the base in oil rubbed bronze or brass. photo: https://www.ethanallen.com/en_US/shop-furniture-dining-room-bar-counter-stools/jewel-metal-base-counter-stool/132513.html

Another midcentury classic, the Bertoia counter height stool, this time in a full leather cover. photo: https://www.knoll.com/product/bertoia-leather-covered-barstool

An early 50’s modern take on the classic 3 legged stool, this time from midcentury Danish master Arne Jacobsen, produced by Fritz Hansen. Photo: https://hivemodern.com/pages/product13015/high-dot-stool-arne-jacobsen-fritz-hansen