Well, the soft launch in the New York Design Center went wonderfully, attracting magazine editors, bloggers, interior designers, and customers. Phew. Amanda was surrounded all evening by fans, students, bloggers, and editors. One never knows how people will respond to prototypes of a new line, so it’s always pins-and-needles time until the show opens.
For her premiere Amanda designed and Niermann Weeks made four products, shown below from the left: a V-table, a round mirror, a fabulously comfy chair, and a cool palm lamp. She and her VP Raymond Schneider designed a story board for each product to show development from initial drawing through close-to-final form.
Her V coffee table anchors itself sturdily to the floor, while expressing lightness with its inset glass top in ultra-marine blue. As you know, I love intense color, and so does Amanda; therefore, for me we’re a match made in heaven.
Her round mirror combines two media (wood and metal) with a cherry frame finished to a glistening darkness, and highlighted by overlapping, overlaid metal circles finished in a faux zinc. The final layer of occasional brass nail heads add a final note of zing, a touch that really pleased Amanda’s public.
Her chair wins my personal prize as a favorite. First of all, it looks stunning with its mélange of interesting form, component shapes, white and gold leaf finishes, seat cushion in an intense dark blue, and knobs at the arm rests. Beyond those attributes, it’s also really comfy to sit in while being light enough to easily carry around a room.
Our artisans had a ball cutting out the leaves for her signature palm lamp, and then had even more fun with gold leafing.
Not to be outdone, Niermann Weeks also presented our own new designs, including this Damon Lantern with its rectangular silhouette oak domed in goldleaf. The lantern hangs over our new Tissage Table, a vignette that mixes the bold weight of the mixed media lantern with the cool lightness of the table. Both are finished in different tones of goldleaf.
Going deeper in our showroom, we placed our Serpentine Bed, introduced last year but always wonderfully, amazingly popular. To its right in this photo sits our brand new Caron Cabinet with its smart inset brass diamond in the drawer and brass arc in the door. The Caron’s swankiness makes me want to replace my own night tables at home.
I will replace my chandelier in the dining room with a custom, larger version of the new Greek Key Pendant. I have always loved Greek key as a design motif and simply must have this fixture in my own home.
Returning, however, to our NYDC market, we also re-created elements of 2013 North Carolina showhouse by Bradshaw Orrell and Randy McManus. For their room at Adamsleigh in North Carolina, we designed this pair of Melbourne Settees, useful for indoors and poolside use. I can’t yet show you their room, but you can soon see it in the forthcoming showhouse issue of Traditional Home.
Next day Niermann Weeks’ Eleanor, Claire, and Justin met with Amanda Nisbet’s Raymond and Amanda herself to plan the new products for our complete launch at High Point in the spring. I thought a soft launch took lots of time, in a few months, just ask me how much time will go into creating all 15+ new products.
Training home, happy and exhausted, my heart exulted to see the new Freedom Tower rising above lower Manhattan. My eyes will probably always look for the Twin Towers but now the new single tower makes me happy in the Big Apple.
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We are thrilled to be selected as the favorite local furniture maker in the 2014 Designers’ Choice Awards from Home & Design magazine. Thanks to all the designers in the Washington, DC, Maryland and Virginia area who voted for us!
Click here for a list of our fellow winners.
Explore the best in hospitality design with Interior Design magazine. Beginning at 3pm, pick up your passport at the entrance and have it stamped in showrooms for a chance to win hospitality prizes. Explore the world of hospitality products and enjoy cocktails & hors d’oeuvres at Niermann Weeks in Suite 905, and at over 40 other showrooms throughout the building.
Top designers and their collaborators share the stories behind hospitality projects around the globe.
5:00pm – Matthew Berman and Andrew Kotchen of workshop/apd with Ron Levine, restauranteur and president of Epicurean Management in Gordon International, Suite 1401
5:45pm – Jeffrey Beers of Jeffrey Beers International with Kristin Franzese, executive vice president, retail of The Plaza Food Hall in HBF/HBF Textiles, Suite 1501
6:30pm – Alexandra Champalimaud of Champalimaud with Carlos Couturier of Grupo Habita in Dennis Miller Associates, Suite 120
7:15pm – Glenn Pushelberg and George Yabu of Yabu Pushelberg with Cindy Allen, editor in chief of Interior Design magazine, in Keilhauer Primason Symchik, Suite 1105
Monday, April 29, 2013
3:00 – 8:00pm
As many of you know, Joe Niermann deals with a family history of heart disease. He has now been diagnosed with Stage 4 Congestive Heart Disease. Consequently, at age 67, his priorities now are rest, relaxation and just enjoying his family.
Joe is a dynamic, strong person who has instilled his passion for design in his daughters and the entire Niermann Weeks Company. We ask for your support, love and prayers at this time.
Eleanor McKay, CEO and Joe’s wife of 44 years
Amongst the interior design vignettes nestled this soothing space by Elizabeth CB March of the Baltimore interior design firm, Jenkins Baer (www.jenkinsbaer.com/marsh.html). She beautifully used wrought iron candlesticks of varying heights to break up the formality of her space. The candlesticks came from Luke Proctor, whose booth presented a greater variety of his hand-forged creations in iron mixed with wood. See more of his work at www.lproctorironworks.com. The harmonious nature of this room makes me feel like I’m inside a painting by the impressionist painter JMS Whistler.
Troy Brooks calls himself a Maker of Fine Furniture, but I think he’s really a wood whisperer, bringing out the greatest beauty and strength in wood. He allows the grain in this desk to shimmer, and he made a functional piece of furniture with wonderful proportions. I really like furniture that works. So if you already have enough Niermann Weeks in your home, it’s fine with me to add a piece from him. You can see a selection at www.troybrookvisions.com/furniture.
Niermann Weeks made its first ergonomically comfortable chair in 1989, and we learned the hard way that a comfortable chair is probably the hardest piece of furniture to design. The human body comes in so many variations of height, weight, and breadth that no one chair can fit all people. Alan Daigre of www.alandaigre.com solves part of this problem by creating mobility within his chairs. He selects hardwoods with great strength and grain patterns, then cuts and pieces bits together by hand. Within the frame of this rocker, each piece of his mosaic flexes with the body sitting in it. His chairs are really comfortable, and my tired legs did not want to leave them.
Another symphony in wood is this hat rack by Don and Jenifer Green (www.greentreehome.com). At 66” tall, its controlled swoops and curves form a sturdy piece for the entry way. I might just keep it as a sculpture and never acknowledge its intended function. It reminds me of architecture by Gaudi, of the interiors of Gothic cathedrals, etc.
Alison Sigethy is new to this show but I bet she returns again and again with her Sea Core Bubble Tubes. Within each tube, bubbles float up and around, which I think would be very restful to watch after a long day, like a thinking person’s lava lamp. For those of us lucky enough to live in the DC area, we’re even luckier that Alison’s studio is in the Torpedo Factory in Alexandria, VA. To enjoy the sights and sounds of a sea core, go to www.alisonsigethy.com/#!sea-cores/cb3i and click on the bottom right.
Still in the realm of home décor are Jennifer McCurdy’s ceramics, which she throws as thinly as possible on her wheel, then carves into pierced work. The way light flows through and around these delicate wonders is just numinous. Her natural forms would be right at home in the ocean’s surf or on a sideboard. See more on her website www.jennifermccurdy.com.
Going to a stranger place, look at these female torsos in blown glass by Alexis Silk (www.alexissilk.com). Ms. Silk has truly captured shape and skin tones of the feminine body. Personally, I am disquieted by hanging the sculpture on metal hooks.
The artistry is easier for me to appreciate when the torso is divorced from its metal presentation.
And now, here are some of my favorite jewelers, including the new-to-this-show Ashley Buchanan. She sculpts her bracelets, earrings, and necklaces from flat steel, powdered-coated (just like furniture) to withstand abuse from use and weather. I would never have thought to reduce this process to create ornamentation for the body. Ashley is just too cool; please meet her work at www.ashleybuchananjewelry.com.
Niermann Weeks uses the same techniques to produce our outdoor furniture, so I immediately understood her work and appreciated her creativity in producing miniature body art. Our Italian Arm Chair and Ottoman are welded of rolled steel and flat sheet metal, then powder-coated for outdoor use.
More coolness comes from Debbie Tuch’s adaptive re-use of slices of dried fruit as jewelry. Several years ago, my daughter Eleanor surprised me with a broach made from a pear slice. It’s sealed in a clear, glittery resin that preserves the natural contour of the fruit. Since then I have purchased new brooches, one of a blood orange and one of a lime, each of which starts a conversation at a party. Debbie makes all kinds of jewelry in these fruits but also of hard candies, so please look at her line on www.glitterlimes.com.
And finally, Danielle Gori-Montanelli transforms humble wool felt into jewelry that makes me happy, just as her smile does. Over the years my collection has grown to include many of her pieces, of which my fave is a large licorice pin. You owe it to yourself to visit her at www.studiodgm.com.
I thank you for enjoying the craft show with me, and offer my apologies to all the talented people whose work not featured here. You are all awesome!
Spring will be here before we know it, and so will this year’s crop of showhouses! We’re kicking of the spring showhouse season with the annual DC Design House, Washington, DC’s premier design house which showcases the talents of the area finest designers to benefit Children’s National Medical Center.
The first chance to see the newly built 14,000 square foot home in Wesley Heights will be the Bear Bones Tour on Saturday 23 February from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tickets for the tour are $5 (or FREE with $25 purchase of DC Design House ticket).
Niermann Weeks is represented in fabulous San Francisco in the equally fabulous showroom of Michael Taylor Designs. Handsome Michael Taylor operated his own design firm from 1956 until his death in 1986, yet his designs for furnishings and interiors have earned him a place in the Top 100 Designers of Architectural Digest.
To refresh your memory of the Michael Taylor style, here’s a quote from the company’s website. Consistently denouncing the cluttered and pretentious, he had a simple ethos: when you take something out, you must increase the size of what’s left. The inventor of what has come to be known as the California Look, he became famous for white-walled, light-filled rooms with boldly over scaled furniture and decorative accessories. I think it’s wonderful that his company now represents the company Joe Niermann and I created. Our great thanks to Lee Pierce, current owner of Michael Taylor Designs, for including us in his showroom!
The San Francisco showroom reflects the California Look with wide open spaces, lots of white, and even a lofty second floor. That’s my Iron and Crystal Chandelier hanging over the dining table.
As visitors walk in the front door, my Avignon Chandelier hangs over a classic display of Michael’s outdoor furniture. Look on the bottom left at the praying figurine, a Chinese statue from Michael’s own personal collection.
More of Niermann Weeks lighting hangs hither and yon throughout. My Vivaldi, Grimaldi, and Rivoli chandeliers hang in front of my Iron and Crystal Sconces on the back wall.
My Gothic Lantern takes the right foreground while the Sévigné Screen anchors the chartreuse wall.
In addition, Niermann Weeks does have some furniture in this showroom. Here the Julian Mirror stands on the Renishaw Commode, flanked on the walls by the Avignon Sconces with, on the left, a LaFalaise Chair.
The showroom, however, invited me to do more than ogle their beautiful displays. 38 people earned an entire .1 CEU by attending my presentation, Greener Lighting: Today’s Choice in Light Bulbs.
These are some the new light bulbs whose efficiency and esthetics we discussed.
To cap off my great time in San Francisco, I even got to admire the fabulous statue, Cupid’s Span, on the Embarcadero in San Francisco. Yes, you guessed it – the sculptors were Claes Oldenburg and Coosje van Bruggen.
Lest you think all my exuberance has been ridiculous, look at the view from my plane when I left home. Now you can understand that I left the dreary ickiness of winter in Maryland, to go have a good time in a better climate with people just wearing light sweaters.
Thanks for reading my blog, and go enjoy San Francisco for yourself!
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.
tel 410.923.0123 – firstname.lastname@example.org
Niermann Weeks is thrilled to announce Egg & Dart Home as our new showroom representative in Los Angeles!
The grand opening party will be on Thursday, October 4 from 5-9 p.m.
Kindly RSVP to 310.652.0425 or to email@example.com.
Egg & Dart Home
525 N. La Cienega Blvd
West Hollywood, CA 90048
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.
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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.
This summer, we are offering a special promotion on our outdoor lanterns! You can dress up your covered porches and outdoor rooms with one of these lantern designs upgraded with outdoor wiring and finishing for no additional charge. All lanterns can also be made with picks to accommodate candles. This offer applies to standard sizes of our Mansard Tole Lanterns, Mizner Lantern, Venetian Lanterns, Gothic Lanterns, Foliate Lanterns, Voliere Lanterns, and Zinc Lanterns on orders placed within the months of June, July and August.
Executive Steering Committee of the Washington Design Center Showroom Owners (formed as of August 10, 2012)
August 17, 2012
Dear Design Colleagues in the Washington, DC Metro Community:
As many of you are aware, as of late July, the Washington Design Center has been sold to the Museum of the Bible. Within the next four years, the new owners intend to completely reposition the building in order to create a new home for their extensive collections. The building will no longer remain a design center.
We want to keep you as informed as we possibly can about the changes that are occurring at the Washington Design Center. We intend to share information with you on an on-going basis. Here is what we know to date:
- The new owner has retained Vornado Realty Trust as the property management company for the Washington Design Center. This will ensure that the building will remain open and will continue to serve the needs of our clients.
- The new owner has advised us that they will not begin construction on the Museum of the Bible before the summer of 2014. With the cooperation of the new owner, it is anticipated that our showrooms will remain open at a minimum through the summer of 2014. At that time construction will begin on The Museum of the Bible, with an estimated completion date in 2016. By that time, however, it is our intent to have completed our move to a new facility in the DC metro area.
- Many of the Washington Design Center showrooms met together on August 10, 2012 to agree upon a relocation plan for the Washington Design Center.
The group committed to the actions below:
- We agreed to act together as a group in order to relocate into a new facility in the DC metro area.
- We appointed an Executive Steering Committee of seven companies, in order to effectively guide the group. This includes the following firms: Baker, Knapp & Tubbs; Duralee; Galleria Carpets; Kravet; J. Lambeth; Niermann Weeks; and Robert Allen.
- We interviewed three real estate brokerage firms and selected Cassidy Turley to help us plan and accomplish our move into a new facility.
- We agreed to keep everyone informed as further decisions are made and as the timetable and location are established.
We understand that there may be some uncertainty in the design community due to the above changes. We hope that this letter, as well as our future communications, will help to allay your concerns. Our showrooms remain open and we invite you, our clients, to show support for our showrooms by shopping, placing orders, and continuing to visit the Washington Design Center as we transition to our new location.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact any member of the Executive Steering Committee.
We know that we will find the right home for the future Washington Design Center and will continue to provide you with the very best in home furnishings products and services.
|AmericanEye||Hines & Company|
|Arc-Com Fabrics||Holland & Sherry|
|Art Gallery||Holly Hunt|
|Baker Knapp & Tubbs *||J Asher Carpet Couture|
|Brunschwig & Fils||J Lambeth & Co *|
|Century Furniture||Kravet *|
|Charles Ray & Associates, Inc.||Michael – Cleary, LLC|
|Cowtan & Tout||Niermann Weeks *|
|Donghia||Osborne & Little|
|Duralee *||Patterson Flynn & Martin|
|Edelman Leather||Pindler Corp.|
|Edward Ferrell + Lewis Mittman||Poliform|
|F. Schumacher & Co||Robert Allen *|
|Farrow & Ball||Stark Carpet|
|Galleria Carpets *||The Rist Corporation|
* Member of the Executive Steering Committee
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.
TUESDAY, JUNE 19 6-8 P.M.
With cocktails & hors d’oeuvres
200 Lexington Avenue (between 32nd & 33rd Streets) New York City
PARTICIPATING SHOWROOMS INCLUDE:
The Bright Group | Century Furniture | Dennis Miller Associates | Hickory Chair Pearson | Lexington Home Brands | Niermann Weeks | PROFILES | Stephanie Odegard Collection
Guests will be invited to enter a tweet-to-win with one grand prize courtesy of the NYDC.*
Also, please bring a business card to our Suite 905 to enter a special raffle for a new Niermann Weeks decorative accessory!
Please respond by June 18 to email@example.com. This invitation is valid for you and one guest.
This year’s DC Design House raised funds for the Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, DC, the only exclusive provider of pediatric care in the Washington metropolitan area. We in the design community created 23 gorgeous areas in a beautiful home in NW Washington, and Niermann Weeks proudly loaned many products. Our project attracted over 10,000 visitors and collected almost a quarter million dollars. Way to go, DC! All the little children thank you.
But now, of course, I must show you how different designers wonderfully presented their spaces, most using Niermann Weeks. I must also credit the paint company Farrow and Ball, whose paints gave a varied and serene look to all the wall surfaces.
Entering the Georgian style home, my daughter Eleanor Niermann and I came into the foyer designed by John Matthew Moore, who had nestled our round Lucien Table into the staircase curve. The Lucien’s dark mahogany finish contrasted crisply with all the other paler tones.
His amazing portrait of three white swans anchored the adjacent reception hall. His remarkable painting technique made us feel these mighty birds were right with us, safely, but at our eye level. Our Cambon Bench quietly tied these compelling swans to the neutrals in the hallway.
Moving into the Parlor by Annette Hannon, I was pleased how she quietly incorporated our Thistle Ceiling Fixture into her room for receiving guests. Its gold leaf finish provided a perfect foil to all her tones of pewter and beige.
Photo by Robert Radifera
Our Thistle throws fascinating shadows onto the ceiling.
Moving upstairs, we entered the master bedroom by Sharon Kleinman of Transitions. She transformed a difficult room with little open wall surface, too many doors, and little natural light into a very restful space. Farrow and Ball’s paint on the wall and trim gave her a simpler palate than what she found on the walls, and then she used our Biarritz Ceiling Fixture and Sconces to cast a glow.
Winding our way back downstairs, we were blown away by two rooms, L’Orangerie by Kelley Proxmire and the Dining Room by Shazalynn Cavin-Winfrey of SCW Interiors. Oh media gods, please take note of the strong design talent exhibited by these two DC interior designers.
Unfortunately, Kelley Proxmire did not use any NW products in her Orangerie. Nonetheless I must commend her on her bold use of color, in this case the strong oranges with the neutral grays. She wields this color combination like the maestra that she is.
Photo by Robert Radifera
Look at how Kelley combined black, and white, and peacock with our Rive Gauche Chandelier in this room in the Washington Design Center in 2010.
Returning, however, to the 2012 DC Design House, Shazalynn Cavin-Winfrey of SCW Interiors presented a lovely and practical vision in the Dining Room. Fortunately for us, she had incorporated many NW products in her interior. For me, her room provided the premier space in this showhouse. She let the antiqued mirror of our Monaco Chandelier diffuse light throughout this shadowed room. To further lighten the space up, Shazalynn placed a glass table top right under the chandelier. She also upholstered our English Club Chairs in an airy, floral fabric. To separate this dining area from a more informal visiting area, she used our Baltic Console as a room divider. Our console provided an obvious break between the two areas yet allowed one’s eyes to look right through it. That’s our also Italian Sconce on the yellow back wall, but more about that in the next image.
On either side of the dining area, Shazalynn created a nook for relaxing informally. She placed our Italian Sconce on the wall as well as our round Fantome Table to hold drinks and accessories.
To the side of the dining area, the designer placed a custom Fantome Bench with an inset metal shelf to hold kindling for the fireplace. How lovely and clever all at once.
All of us at Niermann Weeks give thanks these designers for creating beautiful spaces, showcasing our products, and supporting DC’s Children’s National Medical Center.
Thank you also for reading my blog, and be well!
Websites to Check Out:
Each year the Pacific Design Center (the PDC) holds its annual market in late March in West Hollywood, California. The PDC began construction in 1975 as a complex of three glass-clad buildings designed by the mega-architect Cesar Pelli. The blue building opened first, followed by the green building, and now the red building is almost completed. They all converge on a central park.
The blue building, which we in the know call the Blue Whale, holds the interior design showrooms.
Niermann Weeks is represented by Nancy Corzine, and I was fortunate to run into Nancy herself during market. She, like all of us, was busy visiting all the showrooms to see new product and old friends as well as to learn all we can about the state of our industry today.
In Nancy’s showroom, she has dedicated two rooms to Niermann Weeks, showing off our Crillon and Cristobal Chandeliers and other lighting, Loire Bed, Renishaw Commode, and French Club Chair.
She also has our designs integrated in vignettes throughout the showroom, indicating to customers how easily we all mix and match together. Here’s me photographing a vignette that’s anchored by our Baltic Console.
A hot finish shown at many showrooms looked like oak that has been scrubbed down to reveal its grain pattern.
Niermann Weeks has featured a similar but warmer finish since 1995, shown here in our Renishaw Commode, which makes me feel proud that my company led the trend.
Moving on from my bragging, let me observe that the PDC’s market goes by the name of West Week, since it once lasted a full five work days. That time frame has shrunk over the years, and is now down to 1 ½ days. Another change is that showrooms have either closed during this Great Recession or have moved into smaller, freestanding buildings on the nearby streets. I think well over half the PDC showrooms are empty now, with the display windows covered over in brown paper or showing an art display.
Enough showrooms have moved out onto La Cienega Boulevard between Santa Monica Boulevard and Melrose Avenue, so that the city has recognized that area as the La Cienega Design Quarter.
It took me just as long to visit the showrooms in the PDC as in the store-fronts on La Cienega. I can’t judge which is the better location, but I did enjoy walking outside from shop to shop.
Having sent home emails filled with the results of my industrial espionage, I then turned to a couple days of pure enjoyment in the California sun. My taxi took me past one of my favorite sites, the oil rigs pumping near the LAX airport. The rigs look like prehistoric creatures with their hammer-heads bopping up and down to pull the oil out of the ground.
A client invited me to dine under my Italian Chandelier in their home.
Then my sister-in-law and I walked the beach at Newport Beach wearing sweatshirts against the chill while enjoying the natural life, including this juvenile sea lion swimming around the pier looking for easy feeding.
Pelicans flew overhead searching for their best places to catch fish
Surfers searched for the perfect wave.
As much fun as I had, I was still happy to get home to Maryland, my own dock, and the Mallard ducks that haven’t yet gone north.
Thanks for reading my blog, and be well!
Websites for your further research about the interior design scene in Los Angeles: