Service of What You Might Get For Your Birthday
September 6th, 2016
I visited NY Now recently—formerly the NY International Gift Fair—to report on the kind of present you might receive on your next birthday or anniversary, especially if you like to entertain. As always I caution that my observations are impacted by the fact that I saw only a fraction of the summer market at the Javits Center.
I hope you like shiny things because I saw a lot of highly polished stainless steel, copper, platinum and some gold and silver tableware. In fact sparkling aluminum was prominent. In addition, there were plenty of nods to the past.
Here are a few examples that reflect the show-stopping SHINY TREND:
- Arthur Court Designs exhibited gleaming sand-cast aluminum platters, serving trays, bowls and beverage servers.
Julia Knight’s website explains that her collections are “handmade of sand cast aluminum with a signature blend of enamel infused with crushed mother of pearl.”
- No wonder Beatriz Ball’s bowls and ice buckets, platters and spreaders, wine coasters, frames pitchers and trays shine as they do: They undergo four levels of polishing. The pieces are handmade in Mexico of “molten aluminum poured into sand molds.”
It was hard to identify the medium just by looking at the exquisite tableware and serveware in Mary Jurek Design’s booth. Could it be silver? Turns out to be hand-hammered stainless steel.
Touch of Gold
- Some of Yedi Houseware’s porcelain coffee cups—in shapes reminiscent of the 1940s—were dressed in contemporary colors and dipped in gold like a hallmark Dairy Queen is immersed in chocolate [photo left]. Yedi’s traditional silhouettes featured gold rims.
- Annie Glass enhanced the edges of some pieces in gold.
Shining silver handles on the canes of Cannes Fayet from France winked at passersby.
- Also from the République Française I saw Design Sophie Villepique Paris’s decorative elements with dashes of silver, gold, platinum as well as gemstones and Swarovski crystals.
Some of you are going to say about the items that were UNUSUAL AND NEW TO ME, “Why that’s been around forever….” I’m not shy in revealing my ignorance: I call out below the glass ginger jars filled with fruit in brilliant colors that fooled me—I didn’t know they were candles—and they’ve been made in the USA for 22 years!
If I hadn’t overheard another visitor exclaim, “These are candles?!” I wouldn’t have known this about Lifetime Candles by White River Designs’ cylindrical and ginger shaped glass jars and perfume bottles filled with everything from brightly colored fruit and branches to pinecones, butterflies and flowers suspended artfully in clear lamp oil. Headquartered in Harrison, Ark. the company has been around since 1994. [At the booth, the candles weren't lit yet the magnificent jars nevertheless caught my eye.]
Tote & Able canvas flasks in the shape of foil juice pouches were unusual and curious–useful too.
- Uashmama [pronounced wash mama] washable, resilient, stretched and tanned paper that looks/feels like leather is transformed into lunch bags, traditional looking paper bags, purses wallets, trays and such.
- I loved watching steam dance out of the Cado Japanese air purifier, which itself was handsomely designed and a far cry from the ugly look of cheap, plastic boxy humidifiers of yore. The steam hitting the air was almost as mesmerizing as staring at a waterfall.
- Sarut’s rubber chicken handbag made me smile. I wonder if it was designed for those who attend countless $250+ per person industry lunches where the menu consists of…rubber chicken?
I was surprised to see a bicycle at this show. Martone Cycling Co. stood out both for this reason and for the featured bikes’ clean, vintage design and creative–for a bicycle–colors.
- Furniture in primary hues at the POLaRT booth [photo at top] made me stop to touch the polymer pieces in Victorian and other historic shapes. The faux button tufting was especially clever.
Do you like adding shiny accents to a dining table or to your décor? Can you point to evidence that some manufacturers, in addition to those I identified, are reaching back for design inspiration not only in decorative elements but also in fashion?
Tags: Annie Glass, Arthur Court Designs, Beatriz Ball, Cado air purifier, Cannes Fayet, Julia Knight, Lifetime Candles, Martone Cycling Co, Mary Jurek Designs, NY Now, POLaRT, Sarut's rubber chicken handbag, Tote & Able, Uashmama, Yedi Houseware