Tag Archives: oak

Why Wooden Flooring Remains A Timeless Choice For Modern Homes

What’s the best flooring option for home design or redesign? Hardwood floors have existed since the 1600s and are among the most popular options when selecting wood floors for homes.

Wooden floors can add value to homes in several ways including strength/durability, repairs needed, and resale value. Some of the most popular options for wooden floors include oak, maple, hickory, cherry, and bamboo. They remain among the best flooring for contemporary homes.

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These Colorful Chairs By Designer Donna Wilson Are Excellent Dinner Table Companions

Donna Wilson is a Scottish designer who has been creating colorful knitwear, furniture, plates, and other home accessories since 2003. At the end of September, during SCP‘s The Landscape of Symbols exhibition, the artist premiered a new timber furniture series titled Abstract Assembly.

The Abstract Assembly series features eight pieces of furniture: three chairs, four mirrors, and a bench. Each of the furniture is only available in a limited run of ten pieces.

More info: Donna Wilson | Instagram

Recently, designer Donna Wilson unveiled a new furniture series titled Abstract Assembly

The furniture has been crafted from oak and beech offcuts, as well as Douglas fir, Donna’s favorite timber.

The designs of the furniture are three-dimensional interpretations of Donna’s abstract watercolor paintings.

The furniture was manufactured with the help of Jon Almond of Produce the Goods and SCP.

“A year ago I embarked on a new direction with the main purpose to satisfy my creativity,” the artist told Design Milk. “I finally managed to stand back from what I was doing with my company and see what I needed to do.”

“With no idea where it would take me, I started drawing and painting in the evenings,” said the designer. “The next step was for me to bring these abstract doodle to life and start working in wood, I wanted to make hand-assembled pieces using traditional carpentry techniques and luckily my partner Jon was able to help me develop these pieces into a collection of chairs and mirrors.”

Donna’s designs were even featured in the ELLE Decoration UK magazine

“In between walks on the beach, I began to experiment – drawing and painting, and enjoying the freedom of watercolour and the fluidity of ink,” the artist revealed her creative process in an interview with ELLE Decoration.

See the rest of Donna’s Abstract Assembly series in the gallery below!

Continue reading These Colorful Chairs By Designer Donna Wilson Are Excellent Dinner Table Companions

Asthetique Group’s The Y in Moscow is Ready Made for Millennials

Custom wallpaper defines the second floor’s main dining room, with gray chairs by Saba and peach chairs by Kristalia. Photography by Mikhail Loskutov.

Millennials aren’t just about avocado toast, although the distinctive green, often mixed with peach, is a clear menu favorite around the world. The Y—a new 6,000-square-foot eatery in Moscow featuring a first floor with two open kitchens and 200 seats divided between a casual dining area and coffee shop and formal areas up above—is a textbook example of that generation’s preferred flavor.

Enter the Best of Year Awards by September 20

“We took inspiration from how the ‘70s vibe touched on this generation,” a look that’s prevalent throughout the city’s up-and-coming Hamovniki neighborhood, says designer Alina Pimkina of New York City-based Asthetíque Group, who headed up the project with partner Julien Albertini.

The floors of the large private dining room are a checkerboard of white and brown marble and oak; chairs are by ABC and the tables and velvet-covered banquettes are custom. Photography by Mikhail Loskutov.

The pair also name-checked film director Wes Anderson as a muse; his love of ornament and obsessive symmetry clearly inspired the brass birdcage-like lighting above neat rows of custom chairs in the first-floor dining area. “We pay extreme attention to detail,” says Albertini, “and that makes the place feel very unique, modern, and luxurious.” Rather like the restaurant’s clientele itself.

Keep scrolling for more images from this project >

In the first-floor dining area, custom brass sconces hang over custom oak tables; the gray-teal chairs are by Poiat. Photography by Mikhail Loskutov.
A white marble countertop with a brass sheet metal face defines the open kitchen’s bar, featuring a brass and fluted glass overhang. Photography by Mikhail Loskutov. 
Near the entrance, a cafe layers a custom marble-topped oak counter with a column covered in Midas’s liquid brass and chairs by &tradition. Photography by Mikhail Loskutov.
Bahia chairs gather in the small private dining room on the second floor, which also features custom lighting, tables, and curtains. Photography by Mikhail Loskutov.
The men’s bathroom on the second floor features a perforated metal and concrete cabinet with custom bronze mirrors and Dornbracht faucets. Photography by Mikhail Loskutov. 
The walls of the women’s bathroom on the first floor are oak or stainless steel, the latter with a gradated polish from opaque to mirror. Photography by Mikhail Loskutov.

Read more: Birch by DA Architecture Bureau: 2018 Best of Year Winner for Casual Dining

Continue reading Asthetique Group’s The Y in Moscow is Ready Made for Millennials

Installation Highlights from 3DaysofDesign 2019

A funny thing happened shortly after Signe Terenziani founded annual Danish design event 3DaysofDesign in 2014: Everyone wanted to join in, Danish or not. As seen at this year’s event, which ran May 23-25 in Copenhagen, there was a clever workaround: Coinciding exhibitions and installations—many of them held at embassies. From a house that fits together like a puzzle at the Swiss embassy to swamp foliage filling the prim and stately interior of the Institut Français to a concept store virtually overcome with grass, here are 12 of our favorite installations seen at this year’s event.

Photography courtesy of HHF Architects.

Interlocking plastic components ingeniously formed the Puzzle House by Danish architect Bjarke Ingels of Bjarke Ingels Group and Swiss architect Simon Frommenwiler of HHF Architects, presented at Copenhagen’s waterfront Embassy of Switzerland; they can be broken down into seating elements and partitions offering wind protection. 

Photography courtesy of Gubi.

In sharp contrast to the stately ambience of the Institut Français, swamp grass surrounded newly reissued pieces by iconic French designers from Gubi. A chandelier hung over the C-Chair dining chair, nestled in pampas grass dried to a honey hue. It was designed by Marcel Gascoin in 1947 and is now available in walnut or oak.

Photography courtesy of Gubi.

The legless Pacha lounge chair—introduced by Pierre Paulin in 1975 as a low but elegant way of seating—was also presented at the Institut Français. A pampas grass installation was dyed to match the blue upholstery from French fabric house Pierre Frey.

Photography courtesy of 3DaysofDesign.

At the residence of the Finnish Ambassador to Denmark, Petite 4630 lamps from Finnish brand Secto Design sprouted from a bed of moss, as part of an exhibition featuring Finnish design and lifestyle brands.

Photography courtesy of LesnaVesna.

At the Embassy of Slovenia, the exhibit “Narava” celebrated young design talents from the central European country. The Miss Petticoat lamp collection from design studio LesnaVesna has playful dual-structured shades in walnut, birch, or plywood designed to resemble the retro fashion item. 

Photography by Alastair Philip Wiper, courtesy of Nomad Workspace.

At Nomad Workspace, a co-working space in the former Nørrebro Courthouse, 30 designers took over the ground floor as part of “DAWN x Nomad Workspace,” an exhibit curated by Natalia Sanchez. The Cherry on Top is a collection of mouth-blown glass objects by Helle Mardahl.

Photography by Maja Karen Hansen, courtesy of Nomad Workspace.

Carpets by Layered and Poppykalas were also featured in “DAWN x Nomad Workspace.” 

Photography courtesy of Louise Roe Gallery.

Verdant green grass grew throughout concept store Louise Roe Gallery, as part of the installation “A Walk in the Park.” 

Photography courtesy of Louise Roe Gallery.

“A Walk in the Park” also marked the launch of new materials for the Balloon 04 vase by Louise Roe—among them sky-blue-glazed ceramic.

Photography courtesy of Dinesen.

What does a tree smell like? For the instillation “The Scent of Dinesen,” wood plank manufacturer Dinesen dove deep on this topic, collaborating with Norwegian artist and scent researcher Sissel Tolaas to create an archive of recorded smell molecules. Despite attracting those keen to purchase, the resulting collection of scents—surprisingly diverse and complex—are not for sale.

Photography courtesy of Karimoku Case Study.

The Kinfolk Gallery served as backdrop for the launch of new lifestyle brand Karimoku Case Study, with products presented as a well-appointed apartment. The brainchild of Japanese wood furniture manufacturer Karimoku in collaboration with architecture and design studios Norm Architects and Keiji Ashizawa Design, Karimoku Case Study features products inspired by the temples, shrines, and gardens of Japan. The Case Study Kinuta N-CT01 low table by Norm Architects draws its form from Japanese facades and doors. 

Photography courtesy of Mia Lagerman.

Mia Lagerman, a designer who has lived much of her life straddling the two countries of Sweden and Denmark, was the focus of an exhibit at the Embassy of Sweden. Lagerman’s Sky Wood is a lightweight, stackable chair in molded FSC-certified oak.

Photography courtesy of Hay.

Hay took over two stories of the historic Lindencrone Palais villa to examine the future of live and work spaces. This vignette features the Bernard chair by Shane Schneck—launched last month—paired with the Fifty-Fifty floor lamp by Sam Weller and the Slit table.

Photography courtesy of Hay.

A dining/communal work space area at the Hay installation was furnished with the Result chair by Friso Kramer and Wim Rietveld, a melamine Fleck bowl, and a Pyramid table and bench in matte-lacquered oak.

Photography courtesy of Odd Fellows Mansion.

A giant version of the iconic Ball Chair by Finnish designer Eero Aarnio was clearly winning the prize for most popular photo op at Odd Fellows Mansion, the location of “Framing,” an exhibit presented by PR firm Samira Kudsk in collaboration with industry brands and experts.

Photography styled by Pernille Vest, courtesy of Ole Palsby Design.

At the Hotel Charlottenborg in the historic Charlottenborg Festsal building, 16 brands were featured in an exhibit curated by Ark Journalfocusing on the hospitality market. The Frama|Ole Palsby collection by Ole Palsby Design in collaboration with Frama consists of cutlery produced in Japan with a matt surface achieved by high-pressure polishing.

Read more: 16 Danish Furniture Highlights from Copenhagen’s 3DaysofDesign

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Why design matters in memory care communities

Imagine checking into a new hotel. On the way to the room, you take a wrong turn. Suddenly, you end up in the middle of the conference center and have no idea how to get out. How do you feel? Anxious? Lost? Alone?

Those are feelings that older adults living with Alzheimer’s or dementia feel multiple times per day. Something as seemingly mundane as coming to the end of a dead-end hallway may cause decision paralysis, anxiety and frustration, because residents do not know where to go or how to get back to a space they remember.

This and many other everyday situations that cause stress can be alleviated by paying attention to design details in senior living communities. Here are four areas of community design that can help improve the quality of life for memory care residents.

1. Uncomplicated building design with touches of home

An uncomplicated, circular building design eliminates dead-end hallways and any anxiety they may cause while allowing residents to freely stroll throughout a safe, peaceful and familiar environment. This so-called “donut design” creates a never-ending corridor for residents to explore and is at its best when it surrounds an interior courtyard that allows memory care residents to safely access the outdoors.

Other best-practice memory care design elements:

  • Memory care suites with an open concept layout – one room for the bedroom and living area, plus a bathroom. This design helps residents know where they are at all times and helps prevent falls stemming from confusion.
  • A soothing, neutral color palette for memory care suites gives each resident the freedom to personalize their spaces.
  • Large windows that allow for maximum natural light. Natural light helps keep residents’ circadian rhythms in place, and outdoor views can prompt positive sensory stimulations.
  • Bright, natural lighting. By age 75, most people require twice as much light as the normal recommended standard, and nearly four times as much as a 20-year-old, to see satisfactorily, according to the Dementia Services Development Center. Dark areas in hallways or rooms can appear ominous and confusing to the brain, causing anxiety or agitation.
  • Open communal spaces on each floor give residents an open, unintimidating venue to socialize.
  • Resting areas throughout hallways give residents comfortable places to sit if they get tired.
  • Offering at least one private dining room allows for intimate meals when family members visit.

If the memory care community is part of a senior living community with multiple levels of care, then it is important that the entire community is as compact as possible (rather than featuring long hallways to other parts of the community) to cut down on fatigue and anxiety. This is especially important if one spouse is residing in the assisted living portion of the community and one is in memory care.

Beyond an uncomplicated building design, the goal should be that residents feel at home the moment they move in. This is where attention to detail makes all the difference. Using warm, inviting and upscale finishes such as natural stone; high-quality wood such as oak; fireplaces; and lots of natural light help create a more comfortable atmosphere. Some memory care units include a memory box at the entrance to each suite, where residents and families can post photos and memorabilia that can spark conversation with other residents and caregivers and help share each resident’s personal story.

2. Technology integration

Older adults entering senior living communities today have a much higher level of comfort with personal technologies — such as computers, tablets, smartphones and wearable devices — than yesterday’s seniors, and that comfort level will only grow in the future. Senior living communities should be equipped to offer high-speed Wi-Fi access for residents and guests in all areas of the building, not just common areas.

Some communities are experimenting with providing residents with personal iPads that are pre-loaded with memory games and brain twisters, which also can be used to order meals or schedule life enrichment activities.

Technology integration also is vital when it comes to communicating with families. Caregivers need to have convenient access to computers to email with families, who expect more real-time communication about their family member’s health status and activities. Video conferencing technology also is a priority, as some families may wish to communicate in that manner. This will become even more critical as telemedicine continues to grow and more health consults are done via video.

3. A personalized approach to caregiving and life enrichment

Caregivers are a vital part of residents’ social engagement. Oftentimes, caregivers interact with memory care residents more than anyone else does. Instead of a one-size-fits-all approach, both resident care and the design of communities will need to become much more personalized for each individual’s holistic needs – from life enrichment activities to culinary options.

Memory care units should be designed to allow for both private and collective spaces for a variety of non-medication therapies, such as art therapy, music therapy, culinary therapy, gardening and intergenerational activities. Each memory care resident should have a personalized care plan that is discussed and updated with the resident’s family at least once each year.

4. Sensory stimulation

Best-in-class memory care units are now adding Snoezelen rooms that use light, sound and music, touch and scent to initiate sensory stimulations in the brain. For example, a Snoezelen room might have a lava lamp, scented candles, light patterns projected onto walls, music, squishy bean bags or fiber optic lights. These rooms have been shown to promote feelings of calm, especially in residents with late-stage dementia, those who wander and individuals who experience sundowning or agitation.

Another vital addition to today’s memory care units are “dementia stations.” These areas allow residents to touch familiar objects in a safe environment. For example, a desk would have drawers that open but don’t slam, a work bench might have a soft hammer but no nails and a fishing station may have a pole but no hooks. The idea is that these were once familiar activities for residents. By participating in them, residents use multiple senses that can stimulate the brain in different ways and cause deeper engagement with the world around them.

Putting it all together

Well-thought-out design is not just a “nice to have.” Design can affect the daily emotions of memory care residents. Design can be the reason a family chooses one community over another. The bottom line is that when senior living operators pay attention to design details, just as they would when designing their own homes, the result is safer and more comfortable environments for memory care residents.

Milo Pinkerton is the founder of Heritage Senior Living, the largest senior living provider based in Wisconsin. An architect by trade, he has spent his career creating unique designs for residential properties throughout the Midwest. After assisting his parents in their own search for a senior living community, Pinkerton saw the need for high-quality senior housing with the comforts and convenience of home. Heritage Senior Living now has 14 properties that care for more than 2,000 Wisconsin seniors. Since its founding in 2000, Heritage has worked with Dimension IV Architects to create warm, home-like communities for today’s seniors.

McKnight’s Senior Living welcomes guest columns on subjects of value to the industry. Please see our submission guidelines for more information.

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