Keeping a group of 18 curious design bloggers on point for an entire afternoon tour was a bit like herding cats. Everyones heads were turned a different direction, photos were snapped and many were walking the streets of Soho looking up towards the sky – enjoying the architecture of the cast iron buildings above.Our first stop was at The New Traditionalists. Even though they had a very busy booth at the AD Home Design Show, David snuck away to greet our group and talk a bit about their handsome American made furniture. As you all know, I love that everything about each piece is totally customizable. The New Trad were gracious as always and served us coffee with piles of yummy breakfast pastries.Once everyone had a nibble, we headed over to Paula Rubenstein’s Prince Street emporium of vintage and antique finds. Paula is known for industrial antiques and has an amazing selection of antique glass display cases and textiles. She buys “what she likes” and that is the common thread. She’s been in the same Soho space for the last 20 years (She started her business when her barn Upstate began overflowing with home furnishings and accessories – sound familiar?) and it’s quite possible she is the one responsible for making handsome industrial antiques something that many covet. After our visit with Paula, we headed a little further downtown to Canvas Home Store, Calypso Home and Clic Gallery. The weather was absolutely amazing. Perfect for dipping in and out of some of my favorite shops.
I wanted our next two stops to be BDDW and AERO. BlogTour NYC had big plans to party with BDDW the following evening and (unfortunately) we couldn’t sort out the visit to AERO. It’s a shame because both are iconic, long time established Soho merchants that no one should ever miss on a lifestyle and home furnishings tour downtown. Our next stop was Michele Varian where we were served prosecco and fizzy water in the most delightful gilt tumblers.After that, we visited Ochre. (Above, note that the pewter tea pots are sitting upon the Ochre rectangular moon table=LOVE!) By this point, our BlogTour’ers were starting to look peaked and malnourished. I peeled them up from the ultra-comfy sofas and beelined over to Hastens Soho where a lovely spread of champagne, cheese, crackers, crudités awaited them. Not to mention, there were plenty of handmade mattresses to lounge upon! Everyone took a nice rest, hopped on the internet and tweeted from bed with a glass of champagne in hand.At the end, the Hastens crew ran a drawing for a handmade hammock and Carole King from Dear Designers won! Carole, I hope you love your handmade hammock as much as I do. (Y’all remember when we did a Hastens hammock giveaway on ABCD Design, right?)Last, but certainly not least we made a visit to Flair Home. For those of you who don’t know Flair, they’ve been adding a sophisticated level of dark, modern vintage and new home furnishings and accessories to Soho interior design since 2007. I love the way Flair is merchandised. They group collections together in a livable way that makes you want to take home an entire collection all at once. After the tour wrapped up, I met Shani from Camille Maurice for a drink at The Crosby Street Hotel which is decorated by Kit Kemp. There is so much I love about the interior decoration of this space! Each time I am posed with the question, “Where do you want to meet for drinks?” if they are from outside the City and at all interior decor minded, I always suggest this spot – it doesn’t disappoint! Amazing art, a lively and comfortable combination of old and new…and the color palettes – WOW!
Images: Thanks to David John for capturing a happy photo of me in my element, Arianna for the photo of Hannah with her teddies at Michele Varian and Carole at Dear Designers for some of the Hastens shots. All the rest are my own photos.