Monday, March 29, 2010

Where is our Catalogue?

Two weeks ago I turned on our main computer and tried to check email.  A message appeared in the bottom right hand corner of the screen telling me our (brand new) machine had lost it's internet and networking connections.  So, for the past two weeks we have been in Computer Hell.  This is where you are guaranteed to spend an inordinate amount of time if you think you know enough to outwit tech support.  Taking matters into your own hands, however, is better than getting stuck in Computer Limbo where you wait for your brother-in-law to show up to fix it for free, and hope that he doesn't make it worse.  If you're lucky, you'll go directly to Computer Heaven because you can afford a professional.  I won't bore you with the gorey details, suffice it to say that we thank our clients for bearing with us! 

While I spent my time with installation wizards ("watching paint dry"), I picked up a lot of sales calls from design firms who are reviewing their libraries.  They were inquiring about a catalogue.  We explained that our best sellers are on our site , but what we do best is create good-looking lighting the way you need it.  An example is our work with store development designers.  Years ago, when I worked for Bloomingdale's and Macy*s, I observed how important these often oversized, overscaled visual cues can be to the allure of the store and bottom line.  Sometines the most subtle design element can make a difference in the buyer's mood or perception of the product it was meant to enhance.

We love a challenge!  One of our clients, exclusive British childrens' wear designer, Marie Chantal, opted for drum shades wrapped in a special white tape with  floating linen diffusers.  We engineered them so that they would meet UL code in their US stores yet look the same as the original UK version.

Store design projects allow us to collaborate with top professionals such as the Store Development team of Polo Ralph Lauren where they design some of the most creative store fixtures in the world.  Currently, they are installing a store in Kuwait and recently completed one in Dubais.  For the Childrens' departments of these stores we created hand-sewn lampshade pendants on steriods!

Carolina Herrera commissioned a hand-blown chandelier in smokey brown crystal to match her dress satin and Bergdorf Goodman requested five original miniature chandeliers for their Celine windows on Fifth Avenue.

Sak's Fifth Avenue asked us to reproduce lamps for their Cosmetics Department that were originally made in France in the 1920's.  The assignment was to make an acryllic shade that would look like the original Lalique glass.

We enjoy seeing how beautifully everything turns out - the challenging part is the deadlines.  Yes, it's a scary world out there but no longer do you have to worry about whether your design will work.  You design it and we'll make it work.  That's our job.