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What city am I in today? (Between the weather in Chicago this winter and the sunshine in Arizona, that answer is clearly obvious!) The last few months have been a whirlwind. I’m reminded every day of how lucky I am to be living my dream.

Next week I have the huge honor of hosting my first seminar at the Decoration and Design building in NYC! Hosted by Kravet fabrics, and joined by my dear friend and Executive Editor of Lonny Magazine, Irene Edwards, I will be sharing my experience of building an interior design brand and my trademark design aesthetic, Modernique.

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Whether you are just beginning your interior design career or your realize that being an interior designer is your next must-do career, I hope you can join Irene and me as we share our secrets of building a successful business and brand within the exciting world of interior design.

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“Modernique” Living Room featuring Kravet Chairs! This recent project of mine is hot off the pages of the most recent Luxe Magazine! Photography by Hausman and Associates

After a quick trip to NYC, it is then off to North Carolina for High Point Furniture Market! It’s hard to believe it is that time of year again. I LOVE High Point Market. The most amazing thing about market is that you get to touch, see, hear, and visualize all the latest and greatest in interior design. It always inspires me and I bring those ideas back to share with my team and my clients.

I am thrilled to be asked to return as a host of a “Suite Spot Tour” at the Suites at Market Square! Please join me and my fellow fabulous cohorts- Crystal Palacek, Christian May, and Corey Damen Jenkins- as we share design trends and innovation as we see it. My tour is Sunday, April 6th at 2:00pm! Sign up today! A huge shout out to the International Market Centers and my pal, Gretchen Aubuchon for spearheading the fabulous festivities!

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That Sunday, I am also taking over Instagram for market! Follow me on Instagram @designonhpmkt as I takeover and snap pics of all my fab finds!

 

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Here is a sneak peak at some of my tour stops…

Aidan Gray

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Chan Geo Collection Look # 8 Chandelier, Gold

 

Ro Sham Beaux

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Fluted Table

 

 Louise Gaskill

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Mae Chandlier in gold/silver gilt with vintage blue Murano Glass

 

Tommy Mitchell

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Lucite Gilded Flower Side Table

Stray Dog Designs

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Oberon Chair

I’m counting the days till market. It is not only wonderful seeing all the beautiful introductions in the world of interior design, but also seeing old friends, making new friends, and who could forget eating your way from showroom to showroom and party to party!! Hope to see y’all there!

 

 





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Facade of one of my recent design projects in the heart of Lincoln Park in Chicago

If you know Chicago, then you know that its Lincoln Park neighborhood is one of the most beautiful and family friendly areas of the city.  Its streets are lined with stunning antique brownstones, lovely newly constructed row houses, and as its name suggests, a very substantial + gorgeous park or two.

One of my latest projects was for a fabulous young, active family whose taste was just as energetic.  The traditional facade opens up to interiors filled with bold hues, modern shapes and worldly elements.  Particularly when it is this “hazy shade of winter” (like it is today), a colorful home provides welcome positive energy. I get this vibe from merely hanging with these clients of mine :)

After living in the house for several years-where I had been working all along- and becoming decidedly more interested in adding color and their “personal” touches, we traded in the “traditional” wooden staircase railing for a more sleek and modern steel that outlines the modern interiors perfectly. That along with my favorite color (orange!) stair runner sealed the staircase deal.

We also gutted the kitchen to expand the space by eliminating an unused Butler’s pantry to enhance the storage space and overall functionality for a busy family with three young sons. Shopping one day for some modern goodies, I stumbled upon a dramatic mid-century textile art-piece that fit the dining room wall perfectly. Already equipped with the original modern lucite hanging accessories- this this made my client whoop with joy!  The addition of the mod yet antique Murano Chandelier (1920)..” made with a glass-forging technique developed to amplify flickering candlelight in the 17th century and produced on the island of Murano, it represents the grandeur of centuries-old craftsmanship.” Dramatic in its scale, color and delicate filigree, it complements the antique Chinese table and seating in a whimsical way adding some important design tension.

Out last design step was to create a powder room that literally “lit it up!’ Backlit art by a local artist was custom fit to illuminate this room. Colorful brick floor tiles….a-mazing, no?

As a “color-obsessed” girl myself,  I had a blast working on this project-to say the least!

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Living room filled with bold and eclectic elements-the soft and textural “Pebbles” rug is a fave. Fabrics by Romo.

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Screen shot 2013-02-12 at 1.23.50 PMModern Fiber Art, Murano Glass Chandelier alongside antique Chinese furniture.

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Ann Sacks tile gleaming with combination of metal and colorful glass. BluDot counter stools add a dose of color.

Can you tell that turquoise is a fave color of ours?

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Custom furniture pieces for a smaller “city” family room on top of a Jonathan Adler Lollipop rug. Orange mohair….so dreamy!

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 Crazy cool tile floor in the powder room along with modern art that makes me wanna sing!

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Lacquering an inherited vintage cabinet in a bright turquoise changed this landing forever!

I hope that you enjoyed a glimpse of one of my favorite client projects. As interior designers, we are only successful given the perfect storm of possibilities, humor, architecture, fantastic collaboration, trust and friendship with our clients- and a little love of color, texture, unique art and artifacts along the way. Cheers!





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Buckingham Interiors + Design DIFFA Dining by Design Space

It has been quite a whirlwind past couple of weeks for us over at Buckingham ID!  We participated in the CS Interiors Anniversary Home at The Ritz-Carlton Residences in Chicago (my firm completed the kitchen/patio), and we also just wrapped up DIFFA Dining by Design!  We partnered with one of our favorite fabric/wall covering companies, Romo, to create our Dining by Design space, and I must say that I was thrilled with the results.  Not only was this a fun way to mix and mingle amongst the Chicago design community, it was also a wonderful way to participate in a very worth cause.  DIFFA (Design Industries Foundation Fighting AIDS), is such an amazing organization, and I am honored to contribute to its charitable efforts. My husband had absolutely no luck in restraining me from doing one of the things that I do best…bidding and winning some fabu silent auction items!

We used Kirkby Spectrum plaids for the chairs as well as for framed art, Romo Kingfisher Hexagon wall covering, a mid-century marvelous lighting pendant (that we fondly refer to as “the gummy fixture”) to anchor the space, oversized Richard Kooyman “food” art, and recycled glass objets d’art on stands as part of the tablescape.

I was also inspired by a current Arizona project that I am working on (will share photos with you soon!) to add unique vintage leather Western belts to the back of the chairs.  It was an unexpected touch but I am delighted by the eclectic effect.  After all, what fun is design if not unexpected?

I cannot forget to mention our centerpiece (and new BID showroom pet), Betta Fish Queen Victoria.  She is a true looker and beautifully complimented the scheme.  Nature is the greatest inspiration for design, after all.

Many thanks to H. Bloom for providing the stunning floral arrangements and to Werner Straube Photography for the fabulous photos.

Stay tuned for more Buckingham Interiors + Design news to come…never a dull moment over here at BID headquarters-we have just begun the design for our David Adler designed Lake Forest Showhouse in the “Original Party Room.” How perfect is that for me? :)

Buckingham Interiors + Design DIFFA Dining by Design Space

Buckingham Interiors + Design DIFFA Dining by Design Space

Buckingham Interiors + Design DIFFA Dining by Design Space

Buckingham Interiors + Design DIFFA Dining by Design Space

Buckingham Interiors + Design DIFFA Dining by Design Space

Belt Detail from our DIFFA Dining by Design Chairs

BID girls (L-R: Paulina, Brenna and Colette) with President of Romo USA Frederic Henry at DIFFA Dining by Design Cocktail Party

BID gals (L-R: Shannon, Colette, Paulina, myself and Brenna) at the DIFFA Dining by Design Gala

Team BID (plus hubby John) acting silly at the step and repeat with the Romo girls at DIFFA Dining by Design Gala

L-R: John, Shannon, Paulina, Colette, Julia (me!), Catrina, Maria, Christi, Brenna, Heddi

Yummy signature cocktails at DIFFA Dining by Design Gala (by one of the event’s sponsors, EFFEN Vodka)

Our guest of honor at the Buckingham ID/Romo table- Betta Fish Queen Victoria!

Kehoe Designs display at DIFFA Dining by Design, always a stunner!

Jonathan Adler + Kravet

Ethan Allen showing off preppy chic

Classic Charles Eames quote





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I am definitely what you may call a wine aficionado. And the design possibilities when it comes to wine! Wine can actually enhance your living space. Why hide your wine when it can be out and make a statement! Check out some of my favorite wine cellars and wine storage design ideas.

Daun Curry really knows how to make wine shine. The lighting shining from behind the bottles creates a subtle, warm glow. Notice how the storage travels across the adjacent wall to continue the design and highlight the wine as a central piece of art. Who wouldn’t want to lounge at this home bar with family and friends?!

How about this space? This spiral staircase leads from the kitchen to a “hidden” wine cellar below. If you have the space (and budget!), this could easily become the family’s favorite storytelling subject.

This other example of wine storage takes advantage of the dead space under staircases. This is the perfect solution for smaller spaces and it would be a fairly inexpensive project. Love that each bottle has its own cubbie!

Now this is a hole in the wall that I could actually deal with! Again, this is a great use of otherwise dead space. Do you like how the color blends with the bricks or would you rather have a popping color to further highlight this unique wine storage option?

All you MGs KNOW that I love this one! A little mix of old and new, perfectly modern-ique(R).  Repurpose a vintage library card catalogue  unit to store your favorite bottles—and use the labels to easily find what you’re in the mood for! Use a little chalkboard paint instead of  labels and you add a sophisticated flair while creating even more usability—just erase and relabel after you drink up!

My oh my look at all that wine! Although the link doesn’t give much information on this wine wall, who doesn’t love a bit of mystery? It looks as if a the cooling unit was built into the wall with frosted glass to create glow and beautiful shadows. You would have to have quite the large stock of wine for this to work, but what a unique idea to create a magical space!

As you know, I love functionality and style. This island features convenient storage for your favorite wine! When you’re ready for a drink, it’s right where you need it! I love how you can fit up to 20 bottles of wine without taking up extra space in the room.

So many homes are cramped for space, so that little space between cabinets or in odd places around the kitchen becomes prime real estate. You will notice this dead space particularly around the fridge. If you have about 6 inches, this is the option for you. Although it doesn’t produce a lot of storage, it’s a great idea for the occasional red-wine night, or even just to store your favorite cooking wines!

And here is a wine storage area featured in one of my client’s homes. With just a little space, you can create your own wet/dry bar to create a splash in your living room. This intricate design can store a significant wine collection (and it looks pretty too!). Think of it as your own library of wine!

I like how this minimalist set-up sets the wine as a central design element in the room. The bottles are balanced on peg-like rods, easy to reach and easy to show!

This is an excellent wine storage idea for those who like to keep around a few of their favorite bottles in an elegant display. Love the modern teardrop shape  that accommodates the storage of wine necessities!

Which of these wine storage ideas would you use in your home? Do you have a large stock of wine or do you just keep a few of your favorites? I would love to hear what you’re currently doing in your home and what you would like to do in the future. Comment below!





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Whether you are craving a little bit of lighting bling or just looking for inspiration for “later” design additions, my last post highlighting some fab lighting on a current show ( popular TV and Movie set designs) got me inspired to dig a bit deeper into how lighting is showing up on the big screen. Hoping you will enjoy these 10 interesting and unique pieces found on TV and move sets. Lighting is- as most of you may be used to hearing me say- one of my favorite additions in bringing a room together. Lighting, while  functional also must be enchanting to look at in a room. It can most easily become a work of art!

1. Gossip Girl – David Weeks Aluminum Bullet Chandelier

This David Weeks Aluminum Bullet Chandelier that hangs above Lily’s desk is a uniquely clean lighting fixture that seems to float within the room. Lily’s apartment is a modern and simple place where this piece fits in perfectly.

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2. True Blood – LAMF Crystal Chandelier

The LAMF chandelier over Bill’s desk in his office is a traditional crystal chandelier encased in a black lamp shade taking something simple and traditional and elegantly recreating it into something unique and modern. I know that I shared this image last week- but just couldn’t resist adding it again :)

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3. Sex and the City 2 – Lindsey Ademan Studio Blown-Glass Chandelier

The Lindsey Ademan Studio blown glass chandelier in Carrie and Big’s hallway in Sex and the City 2 is absolutely exquisite and screams “Carrie” the instant you look at it. The look of bubbles mixed with the champagne colors is the perfect example of how attuned to “the deets”  set designers are putting together with the perfect pairings.

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(Image Credit)

4. Mirror Mirror – Laeila Chandelier
In the movie Mirror Mirror, this three meter tall chandelier creates an elegant backdrop for the queens palace. The 6,000 pieces of handblown glass leaves give it a whimsical and beautifully sparkling look that is perfect for this Snow White tale. Mystical and magical!

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(Image Credit)

5. Gilmore Girls – Richard and Emily’s House

There are a ton of great lighting fixtures at Richard and Emily’s house, but one you see quite often is the one over the dining room table. Wether they are enjoying Friday night dinners or reading the morning paper, the chandelier here becomes a regular fixture during the show’s seven seasons. It is a traditional and timeless piece.


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6. The Phantom of the Opera – Swarovski Theater Chandelier

Words can barely describe this amazing 2 ton chandelier. This piece is made of over 20,000 Swarovski crystal pieces and measures 17 feet tall and over 13 feet wide. The chandelier has it’s own part in the movie, as well as a stunt double.

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7. True Blood – Gotham Chandelier

Bill Compton has too many pieces to only list one. This amazing Gotham Chandelier is hung in his foyer, placed after he became the King of Louisiana.


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8. The O.C. – The Cohens Kitchen

In the TV show The O.C. the Cohens have an amazing chandelier that doubles as a pot and pan holder in their kitchen. This is one of the most beautiful set designs showing how a kitchen can look elegant and still be functional in an Orange County home. Looks and feels perfectly “homey” and warm.


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9. Harry Potter – Gringotts Wizarding Bank

The Chandeliers in Gringots Bank that the children visit in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 are paired with beautiful marble columns to convey an amazing reflection of wealth, whimsy and grandeur.

Gringotts Wizarding Bank
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10. GCB – Gigi’s Foyer

The chandelier in Gigi Stopper’s grand foyer is designed to be elegant and show stopping. The two focal points of this space are meant to be the chandelier and the staircase. Classic elegance.


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What are some of your favorite chandeliers from TV and Movie sets? How do they add to the space or reflect the characters they belong to? All MG’s prepare to comment and share!





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A “hot off the press” design project of mine on the North Shore of Chicago.  Custom MS fixture in foyer!

Sitting in the pop-up showroom of furniture and lighting designer Marjorie Skouras at High Point Market was thrilling and  fulfilling.  A treasured friend of mine as well as the mastermind of a gorgeous new line for Currey and Co, I have used the work of Marjorie many times in my own design projects. It is because of my shopping and placing her works-from lighting to all sorts of gorgeous accessories into my projects that we became friends. I loved our last brunch in LA with my assistant, Amy, and dear Bruno and India.

Our friendship led to my showroom being the source for all things “Marjorie” as her midwestern rep. Nate Berkus Associates have become one of our most recent new client’s for that “Marjorie” style.  Her famed beaded chandeliers are to die for as well as her inventive and unique furniture. We have both on display in my Buckingham ID Showroom here in Chicago.

Check out some of my favorite pieces from Marjorie’s collection as well as the use of her work in several of my projects.

Custom designed piece using Tiger’s Eye and Amethyst in one of my latest design project’s in Chicago.  A pair of coordinating sconces seals the deal in this dining room.

Marjorie Skouras in my Buckingham Interiors + Design Showroom

A different Marjorie Skouras light beaded chandelier in my BID showroom

Same fixture in my showroom, different decor-and art exhibit!

Buckingham Interiors + Design Showroom

Same fixture as used in my Showroom in the kitchen of  a Nantucket home I designed. Different scale but still the same “wow.”

Marjorie Skouras piece in the Lake Forest Showhouse Foyer that I participated in for The Infant Welfare Society. I worked with MS to integrate the Fromental Paper via Holly Hunt Chicago into our hand selected beads.

Marjorie Skouras in my space at the Chicago DIFFA Dining by Design event. Bradley Hughes was also a huge hit in my space!

Image of the custom sconce hanging out in Chicago at my client’s abode.

The color of this “Honeycomb” is breathtaking.

This mirror in a rectangular space is sitting pretty at BID Headquarters

Love this rug! Look like someone you know?

These curtain tie backs are gemstones and are to treasure alongside amazing fabrics or stand alone with a subtle monochromatic linen.

Stop by anytime to say “hello.”  We are around from 9am to 6pm CST Monday to Friday. Except this week when I will be cherishing the return of my 3 children from both coasts.

Happiest of Thanksgiving’s to you all!!!!





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{Op Art Tables by Anne Herbst}

I wish I could consider Sunday a day of rest, but in this line of work, it is a 24/7 operation.  Even when I am “relaxing” at home, I am still glued to my computer combing the vast sea of internet based interior design for inspiration, furniture and accessories.  Sitting down at home (albeit in front of my computer) is as close as I get to truly “taking the day to rest.”  Sigh…

On the flip side, I truly do love searching high and low for the absolute perfect, special “somethings” to present to my clients and use in my projects.

This Sunday took me to 1stdibs, a favorite online marketplace of all sorts of extremely high-end goods- from furniture to fine art to vintage clothing.  If your budget allows, it is an excellent place to find one-of-a-kind, fabulous pieces that really have that “wow” factor. I was approached by Michael Bruno to exhibit my wares when he first began -and now, I have inquired and am waiting patiently for his response.  I think that he may have forgotten about me- but I am still VERY interested :0

Check out my latest finds…ironic it was my “resting” day when thousands of others were running 26.2 miles in the Bank of America Chicago Marathon!

{Set of 6 Lucite Bar Stools by Lion in Frost}

{Mid-Century Ceruse Credenza}

{Mid Century Biomorphic Dresser by Popel’s}

{Digit 1 Wool Rug by Cristian Zuzunaga}

{Large 60′s Op Art Mirror}

{Pair of club chars by Leon Rossen for Pace Furniture}

{Set of 6 Teak Spindle Back Round Chairs}

{1960′s Italian Frosted Glass Fixture (pair Available)}

{1970′s French Black Lacquer, Brass, and Agate Table Lamp}

{Pair of Silvered Metal and Wood Table Lamps}

{Art Deco Lamp Base by Frederic Weinberg}

{Chrome & Glass Ball Chandelier}

{Low Table By FranÇois Monnet}

{‘Le Yacht’ drinks tray by Hermès, Paris}

{Pair of Italian Brass and Lucite Side Tables}

{Mid Century Console / Sofa Table in the Manner of Paul Laszlo}

{Mirror, Italian Ca. 1960′s}

{1950s Italian Pair of Bronze-Edged Mirrored Chests}

{Burl & Chrome Etagere by Paul Evans}

{Pair of Flame Veneered Semaniers}

{Restored Brass Serpentine Chest}

Also loving this whole vignette!





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{Urban Smoke Ball Fixture}

Lighting has long been one of my favorite parts of any design project, but it can also be one of the most difficult and time consuming part of the process.  First off, lighting really comes in bulk.  In some of my larger projects, I have upwards of 100 fixtures!  Wattage, placement, dimensions, shades….so much to think about when choosing just the right lighting schemes.

When I was blogging about the 2010 San Francisco Elle Decor Showhouse, I realized that the various designers had one common lighting theme: Urban Electric.  I often use UE myself, for their diverse collection of fixtures can appeal to a broad range of clients’ tastes.  I really admired the pieces used in the showhouse, but I wanted to also share with you some of my personal favorites.  Enjoy!

{Anson Ribbon Fixture}

{Athena Fixture}

{Chisholm Hall Fixture}

{Diamond Fixture}

{Dover Ball Fixture- Elle Decor Showhouse}

{Gwendolyn Hang Fixture}

{Kings Road Fixture}

{Poppy Fixture}

{Morris Ribbon Fixture}

{Sprig Fixture}





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A DeGiulio Kitchen in one of my Buckingham Interiors + Design Projects in Kenilworth, Illinois

While the title of this post is a nod to one of my favorite books (by Anthony Bourdain), the real reference here is to kitchen extraordinaire Mick De Giulio’s new book, “Kitchen Centric.” De Guilio is a veritable kitchen genius and is one of the most revered names in kitchen design not only in Chicago but throughout the country as well.  With over 25 years in the kitchen biz, De Giulio really knows what works.  With his versatility in design, De Giulio appeals to clients with almost any taste.  His projects have been featured in publications from Traditional Home, Better Homes and Gardens to House Beautiful, and his unbelievable showroom in the Chicago Merchandise Mart is definitely worth a visit.  De Giulio is a frequent speaker at industry events, but now his words are being immortalized in a beautiful book that I surely am looking forward to checking out!

Mick De Giulio’s new book, Kitchen Centric

De Giulio kitchen Glencoe, IL

De Giulio kitchen Glencoe, IL

De Giulio Highland Park, IL

De Giulio kitchen Highland Park, IL

De Giulio kitchen Highland Park, IL

De Giulio kitchen Atherton, CA

De Giulio kitchen Winnetka, IL

De Giulio kitchen Monte Sereno, CA

De Giulio kitchen Monte Sereno, CA

De Giulio kitchen Chicago, IL

De Giulio kitchen Chicago, IL

De Giulio kitchen Scottsdale, AZ





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{Mary Jeanne Kneen, owner of Kneen and Co., hosting a party of her own…lucky guests!}

Now that the traditional party season may seem like it is over, there are certain hostesses that are still going strong.  Mary Jeanne Kneen covers all your table topping needs so that throwing the party/giving the hostess gift doesn’t have to stop now.  Not only can this hostess with the mostest throw a fab fete (as featured in Chicago Home + Garden), but as the owner of the recently founded upscale Chicago-based tabletop company Kneen and Co., she’ll help you with everything from the perfect necklace to wear to the get together, exquisite crystal with which to serve your guests, and charming stationary on which to write thank you notes.

Check out some of my favorites finds from Kneen and Co.! And I just have to ask…Are you still all ready to party?

{Fferone design champagne flute set of 2,$70}

{Lobmeyr Sputnik Crystal Sconce}


{Snowflake Linen Cocktail Napkins, $48 each}

{Mandarin Border Linen Fingertip Towel, $65}

{Fancy Monkey Fill In Invitations, The Printery, $45}

{Lobmeyr Polka Crystal Water Glass, $104}

Although Kneen and Co. markets itself as a tabletop company, check out these amazing medallions that I couldn’t help but feature

{Nymphenburg Medallion with Skull in White Glazed Porcelain with Yellow Gold Clasp, $3269}

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