Crushing on: Benjamin Vandiver

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I shouldn’t even title this one crushing on so much as totally, completely, 100% obsessing over. I recently discovered Benjamin Vandiver’s beautiful interiors work on Domaine and was smitten. His style is at once eclectic, glamorous, homey, and modern.

Believe it or not, Benjamin was previously a piano player for 15 years before launching his own firm in the spring of 2012. Originally based in Nashville (he’s already worked with the likes of Connie Britton and Hayden Panettiere), his company is now working in LA and NY, too. Totally a star on the rise.

I’m loving this beautiful black and white room above (so sexy and chic), but when you look at some of his other projects, it’s easy to see he’s not kidding when he says he approaches each client very individually. Check out some other work from his portfolio (you’ll want to pin ‘em all):
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This month's quote: "Take your pleasure seriously."

A Gallery of Lucy

using art.com for custom canvas prints

art.com for custom canvas prints

lucy - art.com canvas prints

I posted this image of a canvas print we had done of Lucy on Instagram last week, and everyone really seemed to love it, so I thought I’d share a little bit about how I had these made in case anyone wanted to do something similar for their own homes! It was easy, surprisingly cost effective, and we absolutely love the end result.

First, why we chose canvas photography prints: the ceilings in our apartment are very tall, which is amazing, but with artwork, you definitely need something that can fill the space and make a statement. Joe had long been wanting to find oil-on-canvas type pieces to furnish the apartment with. However, we were both interested in finding pieces that we knew we’d love forever and would be able to display in our home no matter where that might be — now, or in the future. So basically, after some half-hearted searching, we realized that original art plus future housing uncertainty and budget considerations meant it wasn’t the best time to buy anything.

I suggested we look at doing some simple canvases — perhaps of photographs — but Joe’s not really into photography (I know!) so it seemed like we were stalling out again. But then, I had an idea: what about photos of Lucy? Her face is hilariously expressive, and she’s well trained enough to hold certain positions and poses (if I do say so myself). Plus, I had a hunch that as obsessed with her as he was, portraits of the pup were something Joe could get behind. I was right!

So, I had my friend Yvonne shoot some pictures of Lucy when she was in town last.  Read the full post +

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Nude Art + Pillows

gretchen kelly art on greatly

Because the two are obvious pairings for a post, don’t you think? No, but really, I recently discovered two cool artists that I wanted to share with you today (and a little bit about how I discovered them too!).

The first is artist Gretchen Kelly. She’s an amazing watercolorist based out of Hudson, NY, who’s creates soft, haunting landscapes as well as really fun, energized nude sketches. It’s funny, when I was growing up, my grandmother had several nude paintings and drawings around her house, and I would giggle at them or not take them very seriously (typical). Now I really love them! Especially ones with lots of movement like Gretchen’s, where the subjects are in natural (or sometimes cheeky) poses. Don’t you love her little dashes of color in these nudes, too? They feel so modern, yet feminine!

ellie bradley pillows on greatly

The other discovery is designer Ellie Bradley, who is based in Sydney, Australia and makes cool art prints and pillows. I’m especially taken with her textiles — these pillows are simple, yet graphic, and would make such a statement on a seating piece or even as an accent on a bed. Which design do you like the best?

I discovered both of these gals through this new site called Great.ly. It’s a platform that allows artisans like Gretchen and Ellie to sell their stuff online, BUT the kicker (and the difference between Great.ly and Etsy) is that anyone can apply to be a “tastemaker” on the site and launch their own boutique, featuring the makers that they like and whose aesthetic they really dig (here’s a bit more about how the site works). The site officially launches today, and I put together my own boutique with a bunch of products — from makers all over the world — that really spoke to me! I love discovering small producers and supporting their businesses, and I know you guys do too. New products are being added to Great.ly regularly, but right now, I think it’s a good source for things like entertaining and serveware, art, and randomly enough, scarves and pouches. There are tons of affordable pieces too (I’m considering getting this pretty magnolia still life print — it’s only $35! Don’t you think it would look good in a big frame with a large, white mat?). Check out Great.ly and let me know what you think!

SHOP THIS POST

1. Original “One Minute Post XCIX.8,” $150 | 2. Original “One Minute Pose LXIII5,” $150 | 3. Original “Nude #1234,” $150 | 4. Original “Nude #447,” $200 | 5. Original “Nude #948,” $150 | 6. Block Cushion in Pink, $83 | 7. Eclipse Cushion Cover, $88 | 8. Abstract One Cushion, $88 | 9. Block Cushion in Blue, $83

 

Images via Ellie Bradley and Gretchen Kelly on Great.ly. A quick note: while this is not a sponsored post, note that Great.ly does have a revenue earning system in place for both makers and tastemakers on the site, so if you do end up making a purchase through Great.ly, either another tastemaker or I will earn retail markup on the products purchased. Hopefully that “finder’s fee” is worth it if you discover something unique that you really, truly love! Happy browsing.

PS – In totally unrelated news, The B Bar is hosting its first ever Twitter chat tonight! The topic is blog to biz; you can get details on the chat here, and read Meg’s and my own blog to biz story here and here. Hope to see you on Twitter later this evening!