Back when I worked in the architecture firm I used to browse the aisles of the design library in awe of all the materials. Samples of wood, tile, plastic laminate – yes, and ugh, Forbo sport flooring, paint decks, you name it, it lined the shelves. I loved it, and had no idea that it wasn’t sexy. We designed public schools and libraries — the materials primary characteristics where durability and durability. Still, I was inspired, and longed to be one of the lucky few that got to put together the design sample boards for Client approval. It feels like a long time ago now.
Visiting The Design Center in Boston (now called the Innovation Center) was a rare, and intimidating adventure. Back in the day, a non-designer like me, was not welcome. They made it abundantly clear that they’d rather I leave. My desire to see, touch, and be exposed to all those lovely textures, furnishings, materials and wall coverings, superseded my need to follow the rules, and I tamped down my fear of those foreboding dictatresses of design, in favor of five minutes inside the vault. They exhibit a modicum of welcome nowadays. Do go in. It’s worth it. Act like you own the place – pretend you’re French. You’ll be fine.
In-between these rare visits I scoured design magazine for inspiration. This remains a favorite pastime, but with just 12 editions annually the mags can’t fulfill my rapacious desire for design. Enter stage right….Instagram. It’s like an old friend that one day you awake to realize is full blown love. It delivers constant inspiration. It connects me to people, and places I would never have known, or visited. I see old things in a new light. New businesses that harken back to a time when things weren’t mass produced. I see just how I will design No. 5, and I owe it to InstaG.
As I scroll through the feed I feel almost as happy as if I’ve received a love note, aka a text, from a boy I really like. That vulnerable spot between my belly, and my breast is aflutter with wonder. Everything I have ever wanted, and some that I never knew I needed, is there. The tech savvy of the grammers, use tags. These tags tell you the designers or materials that are the point of focus in the photo. Fear not, if the item you are interested in isn’t tagged (by the way, you won’t see these tags unless you tap the photo once), you can simply send a note through the comment section to get the product details.
The community is so friendly, so willing to share. So happy to promote others. It’s lovely. Today I will open the boxes that arrived this week (I have not intentionally been delaying the moment of gratification), and examine my new lucite and brass curtain rods, courtesy of LuxHoldups via Etsy. These I found on Instagram through Collins Interiors, a sister design firm to Blue Print Store in Dallas Texas. My favorite. Lux is a Brooklyn based woman-owned company that does amazing things with lucite. Do check it out, and if you don’t already have an Instagram account, what are you waiting for?