NeoCon is coming back to the Merchandise Mart in Chicago on June 10 through June 12. Discover thousands of innovative products and resources for corporate hospitality, healthcare, retail, government, institutional and residential interiors from more than 700 showrooms and exhibitors
Niermann Weeks is proud to announce that the architecture and interior design department at our Maryland neighbor, Anne Arundel Community College, will be participating in the student project display special exhibit on the seventh floor. We partnered with the college and the MADE in America organization in nearby Washington, DC for a special design competition to challenge their students to create a custom light fixture for our company. The winning entry and runners up will be on display as part of the student project display.
This showhouse began as a student design competition at the Woodlawn Plantation in Alexandria, VA, co-sponsored by the Made in America program and the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Students received the challenge to adapt an historic home built for George Washington’s nephew and step-granddaughter, to make it liveable for a family in 2013. Further, the students also selected American-made goods and were as green as possible. Rising superbly to this enormous mandate were students of interior design from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, the George Washington University, and the Corcoran Museum of Art. Please join me in admiring their abilities by visiting their showhouse, which stays open until June 16, 2013.
Woodlawn consists of a main building flanked by hyphens. Within the main building, a grand U-shaped staircase connects the two floors with four rooms each. This photo shows the façade as seen from the land; visitors originally would have arrived by boat, from the Potomac River side.
Using the main doorway from the land side, I entered the central hallway decorated by students from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro (hereafter UNCG) and was thrilled to see a pair of my Elgin Chairs. Their neo-classical design is actually appropriate to the 1805 original furnishing of this home, but Niermann Weeks makes them modern by making them ergonomically comfortable. We also make them of farmed wood, which is a renewable resource.
Moving to the right, front room, my eyes were lulled by walls in a very pale shade of blue, which brings the sky into the home and calms the mind. Then my mood shifted into happiness to see how students from the George Washington University had included two Niermann Weeks designs into their dining room. Our Tissage Chandelier holds pride of place over the dining table, and our brand new Verlaine Fire Screen made its debut in this room. We make both these products of metal, another renewable resource. Once metal products reach the end of their useful lives, they can be melted down and re-used in a new way. Further, metal products harbor fewer dust particles within a home, so they are safer for people with various allergies.
In the next room, on the right side of the house but on the water side, students from UNCG created a peaceful living room. Our Octagonal Mirror over the original fireplace would help lessen the impact of actually using the fireplace. As you know, a fireplace at work is all about creating ashy dust, but that dust won’t adhere very well to the surface of the glass. Glass, like metal, can be re-cycled endlessly into new products. On the walls in here, the National Trust used another calming shade, this time in neutralized green.
Interestingly, the owner of neighboring Mount Vernon, the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association, have adopted some raucous colors for their walls. They commissioned chemical analyses of fragments of original paints found in hiddenspots, which showed a surprisingly bright palette in 1799. Consequently, many interior walls have been re-interpreted in really loud colors like in this small dining room. Allow me to quote here from the American studies journal Transatlantica:
Like his contemporaries, George Washington greatly concerned himself with color, both its fastness and its fashionableness, and made socially and politically motivated color choices. When he ordered a new coach in 1768 he wrote to his London factor the following preferences and caveats:
« …green being a colour little apt, as I apprehend to fade, and grateful to the Eye, I woud give it the preference, unless any other colour more in vogue and equally lasting is entitled to precedency, in that case I woud be governed by fashion ».
Vive la difference!
(Photo courtesy of the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association, via www:transatlantica.revues.org/5612.)
Anyway, let’s return to the sitting room on Woodlawn’s left side, with the windows overlooking the water view. We’re back now to calming colors in which UNCG students very cleverly attached stencil paper as a border around the room. They could not alter the walls in any way, but this stencil applied with a removable adhesive did make the space more period-appropriate. They also had the good taste to include my Lucien Side Table, seen to the bottom left of this image.
Then a yummy luncheon rudely interrupted my tour of the house. UNCG hosted this meal with a lovely salad garnished by fried chicken, followed by a rhubarb crème brulee, a meal that would have done Martha Washington’s kitchen proud. After we felt very full, I asked the leadership of this showhouse to take a bow for my camera. On the left, DC’s noted interior designer Barbara Hawthorn headed the National Advisory Committee. James De Lorbe runs the Made in America program. UNCG’s Chancellor Linda P. Brady made gracious remarks and was obviously bursting with pride at her students’ accomplishments; 16 of them took part in this event. Finally, Alexa Hampton served as the honorary Chair of the showhouse. Unfortunately my camera failed to catch Professor Jo Leimenstoll, who teaches UNGC’s extraordinary class on interior architecture.
Feeling full and happy after lunch, I climbed the staircase to admire all UNCG’s treatment of the upstairs rooms. The most appealing to me, obviously, was the small sitting area in the upper foyer, with my Italian Chandelier lighting the space. The way our faux candle sleeves rise up out of their bobeches really does look like candles – without any of the bother of nasty drips of candle wax.
Saying my goodbyes to the group, I took a brief detour to a different part of the Woodlawn Plantation to see the outside of the Pope-Leighey House. This house was built to a simple Frank Lloyd Wright Usonian design in 1941 for $7,000. When the owner died, she left her home to the National Trust, which has twice moved it away to safer ground. The suburban informality of this house contrasts sharply with the formality of the main Plantation house, but both reflect American values at different periods in our history.
Please go to www.nbm.org/about-us/publications/blueprints/the-pope-leighey-house.html for an interview with Mr. Loren Pope concerning his interaction with Frank Lloyd Wright on the design and construction of his modest home. In the Library of Congress, the Historic American Building Survey includes this simple L-shaped floor plan.
Time, however, has been unkind to the home and its contents, so Pope-Leighey’s interior received full attention from the interior design students of the Corcoran School of Art and Design. A downstairs room in Woodlawn exhibited five boards proposing very different interior design treatments for the home today. Shown here is the board of graduate student Monica N. Mesa.
Thank for enjoying the Woodlawn’s Made in America Showhouse with me, and now please go see it for yourself! It will give you lots of inspiration. I have great expectations for all the young interior designers who participated here; we’ll be following their careers as they all rise in prominence.
So Many Websites For Your Learning Pleasure:
- www.memory.loc.gov and type in “Pope Leighey” to bring up digitized drawing and photos from the Historic American Buildings Survey
- http://pdfhost.focus.nps.gov/docs/NHLS/Text/70000792.pdf, the National Trust’s Registration form for Woodlawn, 1998
- www.preservationnation.org/travel-and-sites/sites/woodlawn.html on the National Trust for Historic Preservation and on their property at Woodlawn Plantation
- www.uncg.edu/iar/ on their Interior Architecture program
During Design San Francisco 2013 in the SF Design District, Eleanor McKay will introduce you to the evolving technology of chandelier light bulbs, mandated by 2007 federal standards for greater energy efficiency. Learn about her experiments with various bulbs, and handle samples of incandescent, halogen, CFL, and LED light bulbs. Participants will earn .1 CEU credit.
Michael Taylor Designs will host the talk on Wednesday, February 6 from 1:30 to 2:30 pm. Please RSVP by Friday, February 1.
The Swedish Lantern, inspired by a 19th century Scandinavian antique, is our newest lighting introduction. We stripped down the superfluous details and decorations of the original to arrive at this simple balance of circles and lines.
The lantern has six lights, and measures 15″ wide by 15″ deep by 26.25″ high. It is shown in our Pavilion gold leaf finish.
I see home fashion trends in orders processing through our studios, where our artisans are now working on chandeliers and sconces of teeny, tiny proportions and custom detailing. Only 18” high, this custom Italian ceiling fixture combines bi-level metal arms, six lights, and double crystal swags. Its finish combines Elgin pearl, faux painted zinc, and silver leaf.
This customer also ordered a pair of special Italian sconces for outdoor use, repeating the finish and the double bead swag of the chandelier. These personalized orders are great fun to create.
But wait, we have even more custom Italian chandeliers ready to ship out, like this one that’s 18” high, finished in a lighter variation on our Venetian silver leaf.
And this one, also 18”high, in our standard chalk rust.
This Biarritz Ceiling Fixtures stands 10’ high but reaches to 19” in diameter, finished in Mecca Silver leaf.
This Zinc Wall Lantern comes in at 15” high, and is part of an order for 8 lanterns of varying sizes up to 25” high.
Fearing you might get bored by looking at more teenies, I’ll conclude with a favorite images of Niermann Weeks’ lighting. If you ever wonder how much we can customize a fixture, this photo is worth a thousand words. FYI – The 13” teeny stands in the center.
Happy 2013 and thanks for reading my blog!
It’s hard to fit a glamorous chandelier in a room with eight foot ceilings. We designed the simple metal framework of our Madeleine Ceiling Fixture to fit into such a space, and then finished it in gleaming gold leaf and dripping with shining glass beads. It may be small, but its presence is mightily alluring.
The Madeleine Ceiling Fixture measures 21″ in diameter by 13″ high, and is shown in our French gold leaf finish.
Niermann Weeks’ Quick Ship Program offers a variety of beautiful lighting and furniture designs that ship within just two to four weeks. We created the program over twenty years ago to help designers provide instant gratification for their clients and fill last minutes needs for their projects. The latest Quick Ship product mix encompasses new additions like our popular Crevecoeur Chandelier and Palissy Ceiling Fixture, as well as program staples like the Danieli Chandelier and Roman Side Table.
Our new Quick Ship Brochure is now available online. For more information about the program and products, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or click here to find the showroom representative closest to you.
James DeLorbe, the dynamo behind the Made in America program, is now organizing a student showhouse for the benefit of Historic Woodlawn outside Alexandria, Virginia. Originally this property was a wedding gift of 2,000 acres from George Washington to his adopted daughter, on her marriage in 1799 to his nephew. As you can imagine, Woodlawn is a spectacular historic home with surrounding grounds going down to the Potomac River. It is now owned by the National Trust for Historic Preservation (NTHP). Recently interior design students from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Maryland’s Montgomery College, and DC’s George Washington University all converged for a private tour, stage one in the planning and creation of the showhouse. Even in the property’s neglected state, it turned on my envy button, and I will really enjoy participating in this showhouse.
To give you yet more background, George and Martha Washington raised two young children, Eleanor Parke Custis and her brother George Washington Parke Custis, after their father died at the Battle of Yorktown in 1781. These children, two year old Nellie and her infant brother Washie, were Martha’s actual grandchildren. As General Washington became President Washington, young Nellie and Washie stayed in the public eye. Fast forward to 1799 when Nellie married George’s nephew Lawrence Lewis, just a few months before the death of her adopted father. George Washington gave the young couple this 2,000 acre property carved out of his Mount Vernon estate. By 1805 the young couple, Nellie and Lawrence, had spared little expense in building their home at Woodlawn, a brick, Georgian style home with some of the most current Federal architectural flourishes. Fast forward again to today, when the house is being restored, only a quarter of the original furnishings remain, and portraits of more mature Lawrence and Nellie are on display.
The NTHP’s Deputy Director for Historic Woodlawn, Susan Hellman, is now working with Jim De Lorbe of Made in America to raise awareness of this national architectural treasure. This is the first time a National Trust property will be open to an interior design competition. The student showhouse will engage about 25 students in the business of creating a showhouse by installing rooms in Woodlawn with furnishings donated by companies which have won Made in America awards. All parties will win in this cooperative effort, and the house will once more be open to the public. Here’s the façade of the lesser front of their home, the side that faces the land.
Nellie and Lawrence build a standard English structure the reigns of Kings Georges I, II, and III, with five parts: a central block with enclosed hyphens attaching a smaller structure at either end. Large windows symmetrically placed let in lots of air and daylight. The oval window in the top center, however, gave a nod to American Federal fashions in architecture. Each of the blackened windows in this house today will soon be replaced with a completely restored window with 12 over 12 panes, just as in the house’s heyday. While the young family lived in the center block, Lawrence’s office took up the left, and the kitchen used the right wing.
Their formal, grander façade, however, faced the Potomac River. In the days before interstate highways, travel was easier via waterways, so guests to Woodlawn arrived at the dock and by carriage came up to the more imposing side of the mansion.
As I stood on the front porch, here’s the view all the way down to the river.
Of many original outbuildings, the smokehouse still stands, set back a ways from Lawrence’s office.
And the Flemish bond of the bricks is still as tight as ever.
The interior, however, presents a sadder story. Jim De Lorbe spoke to us all in one of the original hyphens, that had been all dolled up in the early 20th century to look like an 18th century interior.
Downstairs Nellie’s original harpsichord stool remains in her music room, the grandest room in the house with its 14½ foot high ceilings.
In her center hallway her grandfather clock grandly stands.
Going upstairs is an adventure in climbing her steep oval staircase but I bet she looked great sweeping up or down it in her wide skirts.
To give me a sense of balance on the stairs, I clutched the handrail painted in a faux wood grain to match some of the original faux wood grain still left in the music room. In Nellie’s time, faux graining might be far more luxurious than leaving the wood in its natural grain. I think, however, that this graining is a modern interpretation.
At the landing, built into the wall, is a copy of a mural painted by Nellie’s brother Washie. I have lightened my photo considerably to expose the nautical scene hidden underneath layers of grime. The original and very grimy painting stays in safe, off-site storage.
An upstairs bedroom holds an original bed, although the linen can charitably be dismissed as a nice gesture.
Looking up into the bed, I loved the oddly proportioned opening in the canopy.
In just a few more months, Susan Hellman and Jim DeLorbe can show off an interior furnished by these teams of student interior designers. The students will present the house – within their budgets and the lending policies of the Made in America awarded manufacturers – to attract a new affluent family to enjoy the magnificence of this property. Look for a blog in April of next year showing how the students did George Washington proud.
Thanks for reading my blog!
Websites to look at include:
The importance of goods made in America has become more and more important lately as we are all adjusting to the changes in the world’s economies. In light of that, the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) and the Manufacturing Institute are launching the inaugural Manufacturing Day on October 5 to promote awareness of American jobs across the field and across the country.
We have made our headquarters in Maryland since 1984, and have featured in some articles in Maryland publications. Eleanor McKay, co-founder of Niermann Weeks and wife of Joe Niermann, was recently interviewed by Nick Sohr of Maryland Biz News. She spoke about the history of Niermann Weeks, from our start in the garage behind the family home in Memphis, TN in 1978, to the projects we’re working on in our present day studios outside Annapolis, MD. The full article is on their website, and the video interview is available below.
The Capital newspaper of Annapolis, MD just ran an article on the wide variety of local manufacturers in our home Anne Arundel county and neighboring Queen Anne’s county. We are part of a wide range of hands-on makers of goods ranging from aprons by Mama’s Apron Strings to guitars by Paul Reed Smith to stainless steel toy rings by Kleynimals.
We are thrilled to see the renewed focus on American made products, and are proud to be have been part of that tradition for the last 34 years.
Our Caronia Table Lamp shines beautifully thanks to its faceted base of mirrors in antiqued gold leaf. The lamp is shown in our French gold leaf finish, and it measures 6″ wide by 6″ deep by 24″ high with a 12″ drum shade in ivory linen.
Interior designer Hillary Staats has just installed a home in northern Virginia, which includes an eye-popping dining room. Her clients, let’s call them Mr. and Mrs. Paul, had asked her for a home combining formal elements with the comforts of casual living, and Hillary certainly complied. She gave them a home as accessible to blue jeans as to a couture outfit.
The Pauls give frequent dinner parties, so Hillary created this well-bred, neutral dining room with its table extending 104 inches in length. For the table she chose a light wood, slightly different in tone and texture from the floors and the sideboard. She scaled down this pair of our Lille Chandeliers so they’d let light fall evenly over the entire dining table. Then Hillary selected our Gabrielle Chairs. As is our wont, Niermann Weeks designed these dining chairs to provide comfortable support throughout a ninety minute meal. We don’t want guests squirming here and there, but rather we want them to enjoy the Paul’s company. The orange velvet (by Osborne and Little) certainly invites people to come on in and relax. Our nailhead trim accentuates the chairs’ sensuous curves, and it also gives guests’ finges the pleasure of running their fingers over the nails.
Here is a side view showing our chandeliers and chairs in closer detail.
When she’s not designing interiors, Hillary uses her store as a stocking dealer for Niermann Weeks. Her store has a great name of Sanctuary On Church (Street) in Vienna, Virginia. This view into her display also shows how subtly she integrates color into her overall presentation. The Niermann Weeks’ products in this image include:
- Palissy Lantern
- Crevecoeur Chandelier
- Avignon Chandelier, peaking out behind the
- Capucine Chandelier
- Empire Side chairs, around our
- Mirabeau Dining Table
Thanks, Hillary, for making sure brilliant use of our designs! You can see much more about her at www.sanctuaryonchurch.com.
Thank you all for reading my blog.
This Fourth of July was a special day for me and for the Niermann Weeks Company. The Company won a Made in America Award, and a few of us got ringside seats on the Washington Mall to watch the fireworks extravaganza. The Made in America program each year recognizes American furniture makers who manufacture in the United States, using American craftspeople and recycling our income through the American economy. This year’s winners included Niermann Weeks, Hickory Chair, and Kittinger.
We are proud to stand with such distinguished firms.
Helping me celebrate were Dr. James and Rosemarie Howe, Bill Sancho, Rob Roberson, Justine Sancho, and Michael Roberson. The three women are interior designers with many years of patronizing Niermann Weeks. Bill and Rob both manage their spouse’s business. They all came out to help us party during DC’s power blackout on one of our hottest days on record. Many thanks!
But for several days before we showed up in our good clothes, my daughters, Eleanor and Claire, and my intern, Emma Xuan, spent hours in the un-air conditioned near dark to prepare our displays in the foyer and our bedroom. The lobby showed off our Fantome Side Table, Montaigne Floor Lamp, and the amazingly comfy Follot Chair. I love chairs with a back high enough to support my head, and the arm rests are an extra plus for me. It’s a great chair to read in.
Our mirrored Valois Bed takes pride of place in the bedroom, with a Fantome Bench at its foot. The linens are all courtesy of Nancy Corzine’s California furniture & textile company. Going from the left are a Cunyngham Chair, a Danish Commode and an Acanthus Lamp, the Valois Bed and Fantome Bench, a Biarritz Pendant, yet another Danish Commode with an Acanthus Lamp, and a Beaton Mirror. Visitors kept sitting on the bed to pose for glamorous portraits, so we just kept fluffing up the linens.
Looking into the front right corner of our room, my camera caught Emma taking a photo plus our Lucien Table, Montaigne Table Lamp, another view of the Biarritz Pendant, a many paneled Sevigne Screen of antiqued mirrors, and La Falaise Chair in a Groves Brothers silk.
To the other side of the bed the cool gray walls showed off the inimitable Emma, posing with a pair of Italian Sconces, one of Joe Niermann’s paintings inspired by a trip to China, and our often-imitated Baltic Console.
After all us furniture people accepted our awards and showed off our displays, then the party really started. Each year Made in America recognizes masters of different regional cuisines, this year the BBQ masters of the South. We enjoyed a tasting lunch of BBQ made from grass-fed beef, a delightful soup of heirloom peas, organic cheeses, organic wines and beers and ciders whose flavor could be enhanced by various flavors of vegetable-based bitters, an American prosciutto, and other goodies.
The afternoon was devoted to visiting with all the food and furniture honorees and some time-killing. The temperature Inside the Washington Design Center was about a zillion degrees more comfy than the outside air, so we really got quality visiting time.
The food honorees included:
Our lunch turned out to be a teaser for the evening meal, a full-on homage to Southern cuisine. For us carnivores, Rodney of Scott’s Bar Bee Que in Hemingway, SC prepared pulled pork, so succulent that the sauce was really not necessary. Others chefs provided fried chicken, succotash, tomato salad, the best mac & cheese I have ever eaten, cole slaw, spoon bread, lemonade, a rum punch, and a banana pudding for dessert. About 200 people enjoyed this bountiful feast.
After Emma had already begun her dinner, I stopped her to take this photo.
Afterwards, we had no more excuse to stay inside, so Emma, my friend Martha Riviere, and I walked the several blocks to the National Mall. To our surprise, the center of the Mall is completely torn up for reconstruction. So many people use the Mall for recreation and touring the museums that the grass had just gotten pounded into dirt. The dirt has been removed, and new foundation is being laid, and a tougher kind of grass will be planted. ETA: in December the Mall will be a grassy swath again.
This photo shows Emma against the crowds, the construction and the US Capitol.
We found a reasonable place to wait near the American Indian Museum, for the dark to bring the fireworks.
When night finally fell, the rockets glared red and the bombs burst in the air.
At the finale, we saw the Capitol bathed in light, and then we walked off into the dark to get my car.
Thanks for reading my blog about this day that gave me so much pride in being a furniture maker in the land of the free and the home of the brave!
Other websites to look at:
The simple and graceful geometry of our Melbourne Arm Chair lends itself to a wide range of outdoor settings. The intersecting diamond pattern of the chair back and seat are at once reminiscent of Chinese Chippendale and mid-century French design. It is shown in our Painted zinc finish for outdoors, which was inspired by an antique zinc watering can, and it measures 27” wide by 23.5” deep by 35” high.
Niermann Weeks will be honored on July 4 at the annual Take Pride in America celebration held at the Washington Design Center . We’ll receive a 2012 Build It in America Award for our company’s ongoing commitment to making fine quality furniture in America. The award also recognizes our company’s original design aesthetic and dedication to supporting American artisans. The award will be presented by MADE: In America, a non-profit educational group based in Washington, DC that recognizes outstanding American companies who have made an important contribution to the American enterprise system.
Our products will be on display with the other award winners - Kittinger Furniture, Hickory Chair, Kindel Furniture, and Paul Montgomery Studio – in a special “At Home in Washington” showhouse in the Concourse Level of the Washington Design Center for the month of July. The showhouse will be open from Monday through Friday, from 9 am to 5 pm.
From now through the end of May, we are offering a special spring promotion on select chandeliers and their coordinating sconces. When you purchase any size or finish of the Avignon, Danieli, Italian, Crevecoeur, or Iron & Crystal Chandeliers, you will receive a 20% discount on two or more coordinating sconces. This applies to standard items only on orders placed within the months of April and May.
The Palissy Ceiling Fixture, whose shape is reminiscent of an eternity ring, features silver leaf glass tubes and a disk of antiqued mirror surrounding four lights. This fixture measures 14 ½ diameter by 9” high, with four lights, and is shown in our Distressed gold leaf finish.
The Palissy Ceiling Fixture in our Washington, DC Showroom
Get the perfect fit with any of our fabulously flexible Fantome series of tables, benches, and etageres. All custom sizes of the Fantome series products will be offered at their standard prices from now through March 31st. (Some size limitations may apply.)
Fantome Bar Cart – 28w x 18d x 33h – $4110 list
Fantome Bench – 58w x 16d x 18.5h – $4950 list
Fantome Coffee Table – 40w x24d x 19.5h – $3610 list
Fantome Console – 72w x 8d x 29.75h – $3960 list
Fantome Etagere – 30w x 12d x 72h – $5620 list
Fantome Etagere – 36w x 18d x 84h – $6520 list
Fantome Side Table – 3 legs – 24 dia x 26h – $3740 list
Fantome Side Table – 4 legs - 24 dia x 26h – $3740 list
Back by popular demand, we are opening up our factory doors for a special holiday sample sale starting Monday, November 21st. Please stop by our Millersville, MD offices to shop our hundreds of sample sale items discounted at 50-80% off! Our sale gallery will be open Monday through Friday* between 10 am and 3 pm, or by appointment. Please call us at 410.923.0123 or email us at email@example.com for more information.
*NOTE: We will be closed Thursday 11/24 and Friday 11/25 in observance of the Thanksgiving holiday.
760 GENERALS HIGHWAY
MILLERSVILLE, MD 21108
Marie’s first marital kiss was preceded, as you can well imagine, by heaps of planning and coordination. In the last hectic hours before the reception, a crane lifted in Niermann Weeks’ custom Biarritz Pendants and the gigantic Danieli Chandelier. I like the use of greenery to hide the chain; it’s much more elegant than a cloth sock.
The overall space dwarfed our 6 ft x 6 ft Danieli Chandelier.
Just before the party started, all the overhead lights dimmed so our lighting glimmered over the black and white dance floor.
For her floral theme, Marie chose blush, just like these rose petals in an antique silver bowl.
Peonies and hydrangeas supplemented her orchids from Argentina.
The caterer finished the last detail on the wedding cake before wheeling it into the reception.
The band took its place on the raised stage, and then the party began!
Family and friends watched the newly married couple dance their first waltz.
Oh, so romantic. My mother would have approved.
All of us at Niermann Weeks offer best wishes for great happiness to Marie and her groom. May they live long and prosper!
Marie, thank you for including Niermann Weeks in your wedding festivities, and thanks also for letting us share these photos (courtesy www.scottburtonphotography.com).
Thanks to all of you for reading my blog,
Websites to check out include:
Eleanor McKay Presents Greener Lighting in the Post Incandescent World at the Nessen Showroom in DCOTA
Please join Eleanor McKay, CEO of Niermann Weeks, to learn about changes in light bulb standards, especially for chandeliers and sconces. Owners of traditional residential lighting will soon have difficulty finding standard incandescent candelabra bulbs, because federal law has mandated phasing out inefficient incandescent bulbs beginning in 2012. She will show the good and the not-so-good in available alternatives: CFL’s, LED and halogen light bulbs. We in the interior design industry must lobby to include our aesthetic considerations in the newly developing technology for light bulbs.
11 am Presentation (1 CEU Complimentary Credit)
12 pm Lunch Reception to Follow
Our stocking dealer Matt Nicholas, www.mnicholascollection.com, gave us lighting orders for his sister’s wedding reception. Here’s the story of the 6′ x 6′ Danieli Chandelier. At the reception, it will be flanked by a pair of 42” diameter Biarritz Pendants, all to make the bride and groom look even more fabulous.
Rob forged steel into the raw chandelier.
Sandi put silver leaf on the entire frame to begin the finishing process.
Becky froze the tarnished finish on the silver leaf, so it will never tarnish anymore or turn black. She captured Sandi’s finish.
As an aside, in the early days of Niermann Weeks, the girls and I were the finishing team. We’d come home from work and school, to then put in a second shift. I can tell you from personal experience that NW products have acres of surface for finishing. The top, the bottom, and the sides all need to receive the same finish with no drips from one plane to the next. Not being a detail-oriented person, I grew to hate my night job and was unbelievably glad when the company could hire employees.
Sandi, however, obviously loves her work, and as a romantic person she poured her soul into this gift for the Southern bride. The completed chandelier took her about seven full days to transform from raw steel to our Venetian silver leaf finish and then to bead with it with crystals of graduated sizes.
You can see her handiwork up close in this detail of some arms and the center bottom of the fixture.
Moving this delicate beauty for packing and crating provided our next challenge. Ike and DeJuan had already measured it for its 7′ square crate.
Robert and Jazz walked it down through the factory while Ike drove the forklift.
Wayne in the baseball hat helped them carefully hang it from the center of its crate.
As our last step, DeJuan and Wayne carefully in-filled the crate with foam and other packing material so the chandelier could not shift around in its crate, then sealed the whole crate shut.
Now we’ve made it and crated it and turned it over to the freight company. Thanks to Matt Nicholas for this order and God speed to our chandelier!
Sandi, however, can’t rest on her laurels yet. She still has to finish and bead the pair of 42” Biarritz pendants fixtures.
Brad Boswell from the NW-DC showroom and his partner, interior designer Richard Ploff, will attend the wedding to take pictures, so you will soon see our lighting in the reception room. I hope the bride lets us show her off too.
Thanks for reading my blog, and be well!
Niermann Weeks is pleased to announce a special promotion on some of our most popular mirror frames. From now until the end of the year, you can order a range of custom sizes of our Beaton, Gerard, Julian, Mazarin, or Polonaise Mirrors at standard prices.
The custom sizes can range up to 48″ wide by 72″ high, and all our standard and premium level finishes can be applied to each frame.
WOW! That’s it in a nutshell. I haven’t been to a design function in twenty years that was so well promoted and attended. Joe and I had to push through the crowds just to enter the building, had to wait for an empty elevator, and had to push through the crowds in the halls and in our own showroom. My heart was tripping with joy.
Our sign on the ninth floor.
The view of our showroom from the hallway with our Andres in the purple cardigan helping a customer Andres has been with us since we opened our first Manhattan showroom, and his product knowledge is as immense as his courtliness.
The beautiful rugs in this room and throughout are on gracious loan by Stephanie Odegard, whose showroom is also in The News York Design Center.
Just inside the door, to the right of this photo, my daughter Eleanor created a vignette that she knew would please me. Our Gabrielle Chair and Ottoman are right there as a comfy, elegant spot from which I could greet our visitors. To the left stands a Henry Royer Side Table holding our Chinoiserie Tulipiere. Joe designed the plant holder as a Chinese pagoda in honor of Charlotte Moss, who like me loves all things Chinese and all things floral.
The plant holder includes a water well in each level, so mine at home displays seasonal flowers: asters right now, and at other times pansies, tulips, miniature irises, roses, daisies, etc.
A lovely customer at the opening bought this diptych Rolling Pathway by Douglas Freeman. I like this vignette for its composition of samples from our various vendors. Including Douglas’s work, you see Niermann Weeks’ Octagonal Mirror, Spectrums’ Edinburgh acrylic table, and Henry Royer’s Frisson Hall Table.
Our Lighting hung through the showroom, and here glows over our ever-popular Steel Four Post Bed with the Fantome Bench at its foot. The bed rests on another outstanding Odegard carpet and is flanked by a pair of our Danish Commodes. The Sienna Chair is by Gemelli Reproductions.
The New York Design Center directory scheduled my daughters Claire and Eleanor for demonstrations from 3-9 pm – oh their aching feet! Claire showed how we by hand wire and attach the beads to our chandeliers, and Eleanor applied silver-leaf on various items to show a step in our processes. As a proud mama, I greedily enjoyed hearing customers sing their praises.
Eleanor had already silver-leafed three of our Baccello Mirrors as door prizes.
Congratulations to our lucky winners!
- Dane Pressner from D’Aquino Monaco, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Heather Hickling from Jaime Drake Design Associates, email@example.com
- Suzana Monacella from McMillen, firstname.lastname@example.org
To add to our evening, Traditional Home sponsored a book signing by Matthew Patrick Smyth of his new book Living Traditions. Trad Home’s editor Ann Omvig Maine introduced Matthew before his hand started cramping from all the book-signing he did.
Joe and I stood ready to refill Matthew’s glass of sparkling water. Don’t we look absurdly happy?
Our friend John Danzer from Munder-Skiles of the fabulous garden furniture, also came up to chat with Ann and with a startled looking Joe. Joe should know that my camera is ever-ready!
Our opening was big enough news to attract interior designer/blogger Elizabeth Orgera from Shorely Chic in Darien, CT. Now that’s cool.
Tomas Georgi, the newest member of the NW team, stopped giving tearsheets for a moment so I could include him in this blog.
Joe and I finally left for a party featuring a great bluegrass band, BBQ, and cornbread. We abandoned our daughters who doggedly continued their demonstrations for all comers.
Even the Chrysler Building cheered Joe and Me on, as we trudged to our hotel.
When I left for the train home the next morning, I got to see public health at work in Penn Station. The free clinic for flu shots attracted as many people as the NY Design Center had the night before.
Thanks for reading my blog, and please do come see our digs at The New York Design Center (at Lexington Avenue between 32nd and 33rd streets). Tomas and Andres are expecting you.
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