Real or Replica?

Arren Williams blogged today about a great new e-magazine out of Australia called Est.  In particular, he  pointed out their wonderful article called Real or Replica which compares the real Eames DAW chair to a replica.  I completely agree that the real thing is infinitely preferable to a knock-off, and that the latter is not only a poor shadow of the former, but usually a cheap insult to boot.  Arren urges design students to avoid knock-offs, saying even "great affordable design" from places like Ikea or West Elm is so much better than a cheap imitation.  On the whole I agree, but what about a quality knock-off instead of a cheap and boring chair when there is no way to attain the real thing?  What do you guys think?

The Est piece then has some gorgeous photos of the real Eames chairs styled in a variety of ways that are beautifully done:
The last one is my favourite - I love all the black accents that are so popular these days with the natural brown and red.  

So what do you think - do you go real or replica?

EST photos are by Toby Scott and Styled by Amey Rosenthal.

One of a Kind Spring Show

I had a lovely time at the One of a Kind Press Breakfast - dining on delicious artisan crepes and fresh fruit with Lindsay, Jennifer, and Emilija.  We had so much fun chatting that I didn't get to meet the other bloggers that were there, and I had to race through the show!  But I did snap some shots of some booths that caught my eye - in case you were thinking of going.
These gorgeous hand-embroidered dresses were tucked on the end in booth A-54.  Theye were so excited that we stopped by!  It is their first show - their first time showing their clothes at all!  So you know if you get one it will definitely be "one of a kind"!  The fabrics are all Japanese linen and the embroidery detail on them is exquisite.  If I had girls....oh man, I would be so broke!  Definitely go visit these lovely ladies.

I only snapped this one shot of Chari Cohon's booth - I wish I had time for more.  Her lovely textured white ceramics with the vibrant insides stopped me in my tracks.  These were cups I believe but her vases were lovely as well, and her booth was a vision of white.
I think if I had to pick a most-tempting booth, it would be this one by Georgie Russell of Hand & Shadow.  Her scarves were sooo lovely... if I didn't already have a hundred I would definitely have gotten one of hers.  In fact, I still might!  They look batiked but she tells me the designs are actually bleached in so they are wash and wear.  Georgie is at booth E-38, in the Craft Community section, where she was nominated by the Emily Carr School.  And she is so cute!
Also in the Craft Community aisle is Shuyu Lu, whose textile art was my favourite and most unique thing I saw all day.  She is currently artist-in-residence at the Harbourfront Centre's Studio and has a BD in Textile from OCAD.  These delicate pieces are screen-printed with two separate designs and put together in an embroidery hood, before being hand-embroidered.  In addition to the workmanship, her art is whimsical and colourful, and is full of local Toronto references. The garbage strike is one of my favourites, although I also love the one with the streetcar.  Definitely don't miss her stuff - Booth E - 29.
I also loved the work of Hugo Didier, and his Not Made in China porcelain collection.  The cups and mugs came in every shape and size and the poutine cups look just like the styrofoam cups I used to get my Deluxe poutine in... mmmmmmm.... poutine........
Well Deluxe poutine makes me think of New Brunswick, and how thrilled was I to see these gorgeous woven linens, stop to take photos, and then find out they are from New Brunswick?  Honestly, these blankets and dish towels were incredibly beautiful.  Made by Lyne Levesque of Drummond NB, they are serious works of art, all woven by hand on a big loom the slow and methodical way.  Her card is photocopied, she has no website, and I am pretty sure her husband was working the booth.  So if you are looking for a small crafts person with unique, high-quality, and affordable goods, you have to stop by booth J-23 - and not just because she is from New Brunswick!
I was just reading about Cindy Cantin and C Comme Ca on Bess's English Muffin Blog this week and was thrilled to stumble on her stuff at the show!  Bess highlighted her felt bowls, which are lovely, but I was dying for one of those gorgeous wallets.  And the laptop and iPhone cases are amazing and really sturdy.  She is at booth K-40.
There was another booth that I loved but I seem to have lost their card.  :(  If I find it I will add their stuff tomorrow.  All-in-all another great One of a Kind show, I highly recommend it as always.  :)


Check out these cool light fixtures from MESHarchitectures on etsy.  They are nifty combinations of plumbing and electricity that I think would be so neat in a loft space, or as a conversation piece in an eclectic room.  Two of these would be pretty unusual flanking a fireplace, don't you think?  Or in a bathroom?  I love them, and of course, they could come in any finish of pipe - copper, stainless, you name it!
What do you think?  Have I had too much wine?  I may have had too much wine...

More Alphabet Art

I have posted about my own alphabet art here - along with a round-up of some of my favourite alphabets out there.  William loves having this one in his room - he often wakes up singing "ABCD" in the morning, I think because it is next to his bed.  Ohdeedoh just posted another round-up of great children's art, including the print below, which can be downloaded for free at My Poppet blog.
I love the texture of this one, with the felted letters.  I may try to put it on a T-shirt for Will...

By the way, if you would like a copy of the one I did (I have had a few requests!) just leave a comment and I would be happy to send it to you.
We took the kids to the AGO (Art Gallery of Ontario) this morning and had a lovely time.  They were good as gold, and the new AGO is gorgeous.  All that Douglas Fir... those curving lines....glorious. The Canadian collection was superbly displayed - framed in off-white and arranged at eye-level, they were like jewels in an understated setting.  The David Blackwood exhibit was really wonderful.  The one kids table, with paper and broken pencil crayons, was not so great, however, and the gallery was a nightmare to navigate in a stroller.  But hopefully the new Family Centre will solve that.  And the little one is walking!  Still hard to get used to...
I love my boys.

Lemon Blossom

I bought a lemon tree last weekend with my brother (he bought a lime tree - we are bad influences on each other) and I am so enjoying the beautiful blossoms.  They just tell me spring is coming, and fill the house with the most beautiful perfume.  We shall see if they fruit!