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Design on a Dime Draws Big Names, Big Bucks

Housing Works kicked off its eighth annual three-day Design on a Dime event with a star-studded benefit last Thursday night. Among those attending were Interior Design Hall of Famers Jamie Drake and Mario Buatta, Friends of the High Line cofounder Robert Hammond, and interior designer Sheila Bridges, along with the benefit’s cochairs: designers James Huniford, Charlotte Moss, and Evette Rios, and Good Morning America’s Lara Spencer.

The 57 room vignettes were equally dazzling, with many offering contrasting trends: Miles Redd and Arden went for graphic black-and-white palettes while Nick Olsen, Harry Heissmann, and Amanda Nisbet Designs embraced riots of reds, pinks, yellows, and blues. For those unfamiliar with the event, the designers create the vignettes with donated new and vintage furnishings and artwork, all of which are then sold to the public at discounts from 50 to 70 percent off retail.

Proceeds from the benefit and the following two public days— a total of $850,000, the most in the event's history and $100,00 more than last year —go to Housing Works, which provides services and housing for homeless and low-income New Yorkers living with and affected by HIV/AIDS. This year’s proceeds go specifically to the 874 Jefferson Avenue residence project, an abandoned building in Bedford-Stuyvesant that was purchased by Housing Works in 2007 and is being gutted and transformed by Alfred Eatman & Garrison McNeil Associated Architects into 12 apartments slated to open this summer.