Monday, February 28, 2011

Architectural Digest Home Design Show “Sneak Peek”: MacMaster Design

Alex MacMaster is a young, up and coming designer specializing in contemporary lighting and furniture products. He launched his business in 2009 and since then has won several awards for his designs with business partner Limahl Asmall. MacMaster’s style is influenced by contemporary design, while at the same time, he uses traditional British craftsmanship techniques.

MacMaster Design will be showcasing several pieces at the New York Architectural Digest Home Design Show later this month, including the debut of the Reveal Pendant Light. This is the latest piece from MacMaster’s collection. It is an open structure pendant light consisting of eight stunningly laminated timber leaves. The exposed energy efficient light bulb radiates light onto the inner surfaces of the ribbon like timber leaves, thus creating a unique contrast of the leaves by highlighting and silhouetting the leaf profiles that mirror each other.

Aiming to target the commercial industry, MacMaster’s light design would make a lovely addition to hospitality designs as well as restaurant lighting d├ęcor. This is the first of three light designs being launched by Alex MacMaster over the coming months.

Visit the company’s website at for additional information.


Friday, February 25, 2011

Lightweight Blocks, Heavyweight Benefits

Big River Industries Inc., our client, and one of the largest producers of expanded clay lightweight aggregate (LWA), has recently been an integral part of a project for the Maryland Science Center. Working with Ernest Maier and St. John Properties, Big River Industries’ LWA brought about distinct advantages for the project, in construction method as well as in time, labor, shipping, and materials.

The project contractor used E-Lite 24-inch-long lightweight concrete masonry units with specific ratios of Big River Industries’ LWA. The units were supplied from Ernest Maier, Inc. in place of standard weight 16-inch gray units. With this stratgeic approach, the contractor reduced relational construction time and labor by 50 percent.
For our architect, engineer and construction-based blog readers, take a few moments to read the full story about this project we wrote for Masonry Construction magazine’s January issue. In doing so, you can find out exactly what made the units lightweight and how to result with similar savings for your own projects.

Trade media members, the article might be of interest to you, too. Reading it will offer insights from Jeff Speck, vice president of sales and marketing for Big River Industries, Inc., about the key benefits of using lightweight masonry units, especially in large construction jobs. Jeff makes for a well-informed source. Contact us with your byline article assignments for 2011.

To read the full article written by our Laura Drotleff and Don Eberly, click on the provided link:

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Architectural Digest Home Design Show “Sneak Peek”: Julianne D. Bresciani Garden Photography

Julianne D. Bresciani, a garden photographer, will be a welcome addition to the New York Architectural Digest Home Design Show next month. Her vibrant, fresh photographs are a reflection of her passion and knowledge for mediation, gardening and yoga. Whether the environment is contemporary or traditional, these large scale images will come alive, making them a great focal point.

The images featured in this blog post are of the highest clarity and are sure to make a positive impact on garden media and writers.

“Inner Flame” is a bold photograph of a pale pink peony rising and radiating light in a dark garden background. This particular plant has been raised and tended to by Julianne over the last 15 years. While “Transitioning” is a clear, crisp image of an early blooming tree peony that is in the last stages of life, yet still radiating beauty and elegance.

To see more emotion-grabbing photographs, visit Julianne D. Bresciani’s company website at

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Architectural Digest Home Design Show “Sneak Peek”: The New Traditionalists

Born and bred in New York City, The New Traditionalists pride themselves on using history, classic silhouettes, objects and exceptional clothing for design inspiration. Connecting traditional and today is what The New Traditionalists stand for. All furniture pieces are handmade, environmentally smart and produced either in the company’s New York studios or New England facility, in an effort to create jobs and have a lesser impact in the environment. The New Traditionalists use old world furniture-making techniques, like hand-rubbed finishes, grain matching, hardwood construction, kiln-dried frames, and hand-tied springs.

The piece featured in this blog post is uniquely named Chair No. 180. It’s named for the address of Raoul’s on Prince Street in Manhattan. The restaurant Raoul’s was founded in SoHo, New York, by two brothers emigrating from Alsace, France. They were fortunate enough to purchase a little restaurant to start living the American Dream. But, they had so little money; the brothers didn’t throw anything out, including salt! The booths and chairs were used until they fell apart, or were destroyed in brawls among customers. The restaurant went from serving traditional Alsatian cuisine to steaks and fish at an extraordinary low price just to stay afloat. One day they decided to encourage passersby to stop in by standing out in the street and convincing people to dine at the restaurant. Eventually, the business took off and is today a local favorite.

Thus, Chair No. 180 is showing respect to Raoul’s and spreading the word once more. It’s handmade in New England from a kiln-dried hardwood maple frame with eight-way hand-tied springs and an exposed natural walnut base. Shown in tomato leather with limestone piping, this chair can be passed down from generation to generation, creating its own history!

For more information on The New Traditionalists exceptional handmade furniture, visit the company’s website at – To our editor contacts, the story behind this chair along with its incredible design might very well have your readers thanking you for sharing the information. Contact us with your questions and comments.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Architectural Digest Home Design Show “Sneak Peek”: Guarino Furniture Designs, LLC

Artist Glen G. Guarino is set to premiere one-of-a-kind table and mirror designs at the 2011 New York Architectural Digest Home Design show in March. While his work has been seen in numerous art galleries, museums and private art collections, this will be his first appearance at the show. He was recently honored as a “Signature Artist” at the Noyes Museum of Art in New Jersey as a member of the highest caliber of artistic standards.

His designs are constructed from age-old woodworking techniques such as using fine and antique hand tools rather than high-tech machinery, allowing him to express the grace, strength and beauty of local and exotic woods. Guarino’s free-flowing designs can also be custom made for corporate and residential clients who enjoy the art of woodworking.

The piece featured in this blog post is the sculptural “Storm” table. Made from an Ash tree he found in New Jersey, the table takes shape of the natural elegance of tree branches swaying in the wind. The base is topped with a piece from a rescued Northern Catalpa tree. The table is varnished with a clear hand-rubbed finish to bring out the organic beauty of the wood. The “Storm” table is 28’’ tall and 37 ½’’ wide.

Visit Guarino Furniture Design’s website at

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Architectural Digest Home Design Show “Sneak Peek”: Sub-Zero Wolf

Owning a Sub-Zero Wolf kitchen appliance is like having a state of the art, 5 star kitchen in your own home. Dining in would be a luxury in itself. As part of our “Sneak Peek” series, Sub-Zero Wolf is among many exhibitors at the 2011 New York Architectural Digest Home Design Show this spring. They will be showcasing several new, high tech kitchen appliances, such as the one featured in this blog.

The latest and greatest innovation from Sub-Zero Wolf are the Integrated Columns. This 27- inch column all refrigerator and 27- inch column all freezer was designed with the customer in mind. While the columns are a new execution in the Sub-Zero design options, they represent a continuation of the company’s trendsetting offering of products that are design sensitive and responsive to consumers’ wishes for new concepts.

With no visible hinges or grilles in sight, the Integrated Columns fit seamlessly into kitchen designs, creating an aesthetically pleasing environment. Sub-Zero Wolf’s precise knowledge of the science of food preservation allows the controlled temperature to constantly stay within one degree of the set temperature. Additionally, the heavily insulated doors and magnetic door seal prevents air leaks to keep food fresh and crisp as well as conserve energy. This Sub-Zero Wolf Integrated Column has already earned the Energy Star qualified rating by meeting the strict guidelines of the EPA and the U.S. Department of Energy.

For more information on the Integrated Columns or other Sub-Zero Wolf appliances, visit the company’s website at


Monday, February 7, 2011

Terra Nova Nurseries' On Fire

'Fire Glow'
The January 2011 issue of Nursery Management prominently featured Terra Nova Nurseries’ Kniphofia ‘Fire Glow’. “Fire Glow’ is one of two plants in the Kniphofia Glow Series. Its vibrant, hot colors stand out like flames. They are perfect for small gardens and bloom from August to frost. Similarly, the almost fluorescent ‘Ember Glow’ is a bi-color yellow and orange and looks just like candy corn!

Additionally, Terra Nova Nurseries offers the Kniphofia Popsicle Series. They look good enough to eat! This series includes ‘Creamsicle’, ‘Papaya Popsicle’, ‘Mango Popsicle’ and ‘Pineapple Popsicle’. ‘Creamsicle’ has multiple spikes of orange flowers, guaranteed to brighten up your day. Or how about slicing open a succulent slice of pineapple to see the wonderful color of ‘Pineapple Popsicle's’ blooming dynamo’s flowers. The Popsicle Series bloom all summer into fall and are known for being excellent re-bloomers.
'Pineapple Popsicle'

For more information about Kniphofias or if you’re interested in other luscious, enchanting, plants, visit Terra Nova Nurseries' company website at

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

It's an Honor Just to be Nominated. Seriously.

Lisa Hallett Taylor, Guide to Pool and Patio Editor, wrote the following guest blog for us regarding's 2011 Readers' Choice Awards. For all of our designer and product manufacturer blog followers, take a moment to read about this exciting opportunity. Pass it along to others in the industry, and come back and post your comments (below) to tell us about your participation. Good luck to all those who are nominated! ~ ECPR.

Awards season is in full swing. The SAG Awards took place on Sunday, and the Grammys, Razzies and Oscars are just around the corner. The nominees are doing the party circuit and pocketing swag faster than you can blink a false eyelash.

But, it's not too late to see your picks in other categories get the recognition you think they deserve. The unglamorous, hard-working, unsung heroes -- things you may have in your own backyard.'s 2011 Readers' Choice Awards is accepting nominations through February 4th in a multitude of channel categories. This year,'s Pool and Patio site -- which covers all things related to residential outdoor living spaces -- is participating in the annual Awards. Through Friday, February 4th, we will be accepting nominations in the following five categories:
Best Hot Tub/Spa Brand or Manufacturer
Best Pool Test Kit
Best Pool Cleaner/Vacuum Brand and Model
Best Decking Material (real wood, composite or whatever else you might use for decking)
Best Patio Furniture Brand or Manufacturer

After nominations close on February 4th, the top-five finalists in each category will be determined and voting for the winners will take place from February 11th through March 8th, with winners announced on March 15th.

Award winners will not receive a golden statuette from James Franco and Anne Hathaway -- just the bragging rights that come with getting recognized by the readers of a leading website owned by The New York Times Co. Learn more about the 2011 Readers' Choice Awards.

To enter your nominations in the Pool and Patio categories, go to the official Pool and Patio Readers' Choice Award Nomination Form. And, for potential finalists, it's an honor just to be nominated. Just ask the hundreds of people who have gushed those words during an acceptance speech.

Lisa Hallett Taylor Guide to Pool and Patio