Sunday, January 31, 2010

Paris: Maison et Objet - the people


Seen at Maison et Objet. Italian food consultant and caterer, Corrado Calza.
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Paris: Masion et Objet - Chefs de Paris

Maison et Objet – Paris Des Chefs: Food and design. Maison et Objet together with Omnivore have organized for the second time the event, Chefs de Paris, involving creative duos in which international chefs encounter artists, architects and photographers for an unusual exchange.    It was broadcast live in amphitheatre, on a giant screen in the “La Table” section of the exhibition.
Seen above.  On the giant screen the dish, Gambas Farofa de Manioc prepared by Jean-Francois Rouquette, who talked with designer, Fred Pinel, founder of Pinel & Pinel the contemporary luxury brand, who presented his eponymous knife manufactured by La Forge Laguiole. Sebastien Demorand moderated the event.

International Chef.   The star chef, Jean Francois Rouquette runs the Paris Hyatt Vendome restaurants, of which, thanks to Jean-Francois, the Pur restaurant was honored with it’s first Michelin star. The Pur restaurant offers an innovative gastronomic style in which simplicity becomes synonymous with purity and refinement.

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Paris: Maison et Objet - Transcultures

 Maison et Objet – Transcultures.  Transcultures, a small exhibition of objects chosen by Elizabeth Leriche, which explores new geographies in which sharing differences enriches creation. Design and artisan work are abolishing the borders between nearby and faraway…
Cordula Kehrer – Bow Bins.  Combination of recycled waste plastic bins and traditional handicraft basket making done all over the world of Asia, Africa and Latin America. Bow Bins are produced by German designer, Cordula Kehrer, with plastic bins collected and repaired using wicker, rush, bamboo or cane.  Each waste plastic bin combines old and new artificial and natural material in a refreshing new and artful way.

Philippe Bestenheider – Binta. The Binta chair is designed by Philippe Bestenheider for Moroso, with its sculptural form, it is inspired by Africa. As imposing as a baobab, it is upholstered in a wax print: a traditional fabric worn by African women.
Note. In the background, colored textile bands create a unique pattern, which recalls the Kente fabrics from Ghana.

Paola Navone – Lizard.  The small table, Lizard designed by Italian design superstar, Paola Navone is part of the Black and White collection for Baxter, with an African inspiration.  It is a teeming reservoir of patterns, tribal motifs, ideas and energy that illustrate a rich and precious iconographic and cultural heritage from which Paola draws her inspiration.

Tom Dixon – Beat. The Beat lamps designed by Tom Dixon require excellence in craftsmanship.  Brass is hand-hammered through a traditional technique used by Indian master artisans.  Behind each chandelier, you can feel the hand of the artisan, the gesture of the person who produced it.  Its form is inspired by the vases that Indians carry on their heads to get water.
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Paris: Maison et Objet - Visionnaire

Maison et Objet – Visionnaire.  Samuele Mazza the Visionnaire designer poses with the displays of busts of Roman Emperors outside the stand, this already gives us an indication of what we might find inside. “After the gothic phase, which surely represents most of the European stylistic contaminations, now we want to quote the other dominant parts of Europe: radiant, ethereal, classical: starting from the Hellenic influence and going on to the Roman Empire…. and, not only Caesars..” he explains.

Detail of a table. "Everything reminds us of the “Villa del Casale” in Sicily, a magnificent example of the house of the Roman Empire period. Plaster masterpieces, columns, metals, velvets, leathers, as well as, the whole set of objects and colors, are dedicated to a new chapter which I would title, using the “Star Wars” leitmotiv, “The Empire Strikes Again”. Samuele Mazza tells us.
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Paris: Maison et Objet - Koziel

Seen at Maison et Objet – Koziel.  Christophe Koziel comes from the world of marketing, window dressing and theatre. In 2005, inspired by the props he used in his works, he decides to launce a line of decorative trompe-l’oeil objects in heavy cardboard for toute le monde.  In the photograph, Cristophe props up a Louis XV chair against a trompe-l’oeil, Kapyton Classic wallpaper with padding and studding effects. Currently you can see his set designs in the Carlo Goldoni play, La Servante Amoureux, at the Theatre Hebertot in Paris until the end of March.

Details.  Fun and whimsical, the piles of books, a Tummery commode and a gigantic spoon and fork can embellish any interior.

Details. A commode Merlymon and "authentic" picture frames from the XVIII, XIX and beginning of the XX centuries are on sale at Galeries Lafayette Maison.
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Paris: Maison et Objet - the people

Seen at Maison et Objet. Design entrepreneur, Giulio Cappellini.
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Friday, January 29, 2010

Paris: Maison et Objet - the food

Seen at Maison et Objet - a detail of the Laduree stall.   Even at Maison et Objet you can pick up a box of the freshest Laduree macaroons to take back home with you, they make the ideal gift.  These small, round cakes, crisp on the outside, smooth and soft in the middle, are made every morning in LadurĂ©e’s "laboratory". With each new season, LadurĂ©e pays tribute to this its most famous creation by creating a new flavor: this year’s is a deep purple colored Fig and Date, which is absolutely delicious.
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Thursday, January 14, 2010


Bespoke Tailor - N.H Sartoria.   In the center of Milan is the seat of N.H. Sartoria, N.H. which derives from the Latin Nobil Homo and translates as Nobleman: two letters that express an indication of a style that gives singleness to the tradition of a custom made suit.  In this relaxed atmosphere, the gentleman can plan his entire “trousseau” including shirts, ties and shoes, as well as a wide selection of classic and amusing new or vintage cufflinks.

The Jacket. The jackets, created by Master tailor Domenico Bombino, following the art of the historical tailoring tradition of the south Italian region of Puglia where the cut plays the most important role, take form naturally on the body, without requiring internal structures which usually gives a stiff look. And, above all, they make one forget one is wearing a jacket and tie.

The “author”.   The author or creator of N.H Sartoria, a contemporary reading of traditional bespoke tailoring is Count Federico Ceschi a Santa Croce, who decided to merge in a “non-brand” a world of personal details and timeless elegance, exclusively for his friends and customers. Bespoke tailored garments have always been his greatest passion and since he met Master tailor Domenico Bombino, his dressing ideas have taken a new direction.  Here starts the professional team that joins the taste of Federico Ceschi a Santa Croce in finding and combining refined “collector’s” fabrics to the best accessories with the tailoring “maestria” of Domenico Bombino, that succeeds in turning very special fabrics into unique garments, rich of sophisticated charm.
Note: the luscious deep green velvet tie. N.H also produces special velvet ties for La Scala opera house in their signature red .

A detail.
  The interior of the Count’s jacket in true N.H. style is unsheathed and has no internal infrastructures.  The N.H. Jackets are very light to wear and fit the body perfectly by underlining any type of internal manufacturing.

The ties.
Knitted “No stitch” ties, which are reversible, seamless and extra light in cashmere or silk, are made to order and available in wide range of matching colors. On the N.H website you can also design your own sports tie choosing your background and colors, a most amusing pastime.

The shirts.  Like the suits, N.H’s shirts are not only handcrafted but also made to measure, and offer a wide range of rich fabrics and exclusive models, their main styles are:
The French style:  the collar is not supposed to be too open.
The button down style:  the model is extremely soft and comfortable.
The classic Italian style:  the collar has got an exclusive design made by N.H Couture House, which does not turn upwards and remains comfortably under the jacket’s lapels.

A detail - the morning suit. The formal suits “par excellence” are offered at N.H Couture House in light fabrics, together with striped fabrics for the trousers.   In Italy the waistcoat has to be pearl-grey.
Note: the lapels, which are the forte of N.H Sartoria.

The shoes. Just a few classic, chic, handcrafted and made-to-measure models are exclusively conceived for N. H. by Riccardo Freccia Bestetti.  As shoes reflect the style and taste of an elegant man, as well as, his clothes do, for this reason, the shoes have been designed with extreme care, in order to be personalized and made eternal.

A detail.   A corner of the atelier, where vintage cufflinks and rare books on fashion are on display on the shelves.

The cufflinks.  For the custom made shirts the cufflinks have to be unique, ironic, colored and fanciful, like these made out of hand-blown Murano glass.

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Monday, January 11, 2010


Bespoke Tailor and Designer - Warren Oliver Davis & Co.  Warren Oliver Davis’s atelier is in the chic residential area of Milan.  The elegant workshop is more like a private apartment.  In the men’s showroom a heavy double wool thick English tweed pea coat and a herringbone English wool coat are displayed.  Warren is known for his slim contemporary cut, his outerwear and jackets. His clientele is young and creative and you can find many architects, journalists and lawyers amongst them who appreciate and are open to alternative rather than classic styles in tailoring.
Warren Oliver Davis & Co.  Via Vivaio 24 – Milan 20122 – Tel: 027-631-9114 – email:

The tailor and designer.  Warren Oliver Davis was discovered twenty-two years ago at Medway College of Art and Design in Rochester, England, by Enrico Coveri, who brought him to Italy. Since then he has held important designing posts at Giorgio Armani, Jil Sander and Versace.   After twenty years of designing for other people he started his own bespoke tailoring atelier. “In designing, I am working to achieve a new form that can only be achieved by tailoring, by doing one offs.” He explains. 
Note: in the background are the rolls of the finest English and Italian cloths that he collects.  Warren is very particular about cloth; some of the cloth is unique and not made any more, and some date back to the 1960s and the 1970s.

The Shirts.   The bespoke shirts are made in toile before cutting into the fabric.  Warren gives a lot of attention to color and the necks of his shirts have a higher band and an angular collar, as this looks more balanced under a jacket.

A detail: the fitting room.  A corner of the fitting room.  The atelier is decorated in black and white with hints of orange.

A detail.  In the fitting room black and white photographs from the 1970s bestow mood and atmosphere to the space.

A detail.  In the ladies showroom books on fashion adorn a side table. The ladies line is more designed and flamboyant than the men’s.  Warren likes to experiment with the tailoring to arrive at new cuts and draperies.

The mood board.   The ladies mood board shows the sketches for the 2009/2010 winter ladies collection.   Warren designs two men and two ladies collection each year.

The Coffee.   Espresso coffee or tea is offered accompanied by small cakes, which Warren cooks especially on Sunday afternoons for the atelier.  This Pear and Chocolate with Ginger and Cinnamon Meringue pie was absolutely delicious.

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