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Cutting Design Corners
When I started out as a designer and was finally given a "real" project, some of the most daunting tasks I was given were to design spaces on generous budgets. This may sound odd, but up to that point, I had become really skilled at working on tight-budget projects. I had to think of clever solutions to solve aesthetic and functional design issues. Some of these options had actually included New York City trash picking–never for clients, but rather for myself. I should add that I picked up some pretty good stuff!
I was not yet familiar with the great design companies that serve as the standard I can always count on: B&B Italia, Moroso, Edra, Vitra, Cassina, Knoll, Moooi, and more. It took me a while to figure these out; ICFF was really helpful in helping me define my style and figure out which companies and designers I loved. Going to the show year after year solidified these favorites for me.
I am currently working on selecting bathroom accessories for a townhouse with eight bathrooms/powder rooms. I would usually stick to Dornbracht, Valli &Valli, and Vola for beautiful toilet paper holders, towel hooks, and towel bars, but now we must venture to find some less expensive options. Does a towel bar have to cost $450? Can we find a simple solution for $150?
In this stage of my career, I am a confident in my style, though I continue to learn and grow. It is a good excercise to go back to designing the way I did in the beginning–to be resourceful and clever. I know it is easy to rely on solid design manufacturers and we should continue to support them, but in this economic climate, now may be the time to look a little deeper into the woods, lift some rocks, clear some moss, and see what else is out there.
Here are some bathroom accessories we found at Ghislaine Viñas Interior Design:
*As an aside, I have to add that I am hoping these hold up. I am not sure how they compare in quality to some of the brands mentioned above.
These pieces from AF Supply are modern, simple, and beautiful (in looks AND in price). They are all from the Manhattan series of Davinci. The towel hook is $22, the 24" towel bar is $97, and the toilet tissue holder is $92.
Restoration Hardware has two lines we are considering: Albion and Modern. The Albion towel bar ranges from $38-49. The Modern lines towel bar ranges from $65-85, while the towel ring and toilet tissue holder are $55 each.