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Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Sites We Love: Basic French

Basic French is a favorite site for both Holly and I. I go there regularly to get my bathroom soap and candles but always seem to find a special treasure or two as well.

Cote Bastide Hemp Candle is touted as the owner’s favorite and it has become mine as well. It’s such a clean, refreshing scent and it lasts forever. I also like the simple design; it goes perfectly in any interior.

I also think having a soap dispenser with great smelling soap is one of those little things in a stressful life that can bring you brief moments of joy. I always order refills of the La Compagnie de Provence Hand Soap and Orange and Grapefruit are probably my favorite.

Check out Basic French to find your own little treasures!

Monday, May 05, 2008

Real Simple Office Makeover

I can’t get over this office remodel that Kate Parker from Real Simple did and I think you’ll love it too!

This room is so common in so many people’s homes. The multi-task room office/reading room/makeshift guestroom/storage, whatever it is, it’s a mess. Not to mention that the woman who’s office this is spent 30 to 40 hours a week in this office. Not terribly inspiring.

And here’s the after. Just beautiful. It is warm, contemporary and clean. I love the whiteboard above the desk, so much more decorative than a cork board from Staples. I also like having an extra table area behind the desk to give more room to organize piles of paperwork.

This is a great idea for a desk which Carly from Real Simple tells me is from IKEA. It gives you two layers of work space. You can easily store your calendar and comp books below so there is always room to work on top. Here’s a better view of the desk. I also love the printer/fax machine cubby to the left of the desk. It has roll tops so you can disguise that ugly printer.

To see more on this miraculous makeover go to Simply Stated.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Designer Spotlight: SusyJack*

The minute we saw the SusyJack* line we all died and went to heaven. The bold colors and beautiful prints are inspirational and the entire line has been flying off the shelves since the day it arrived. Not only is Susy an incredibly talented designer, she’s adorable and fun to work with.

Here’s a peek into what inspires her…

What inspired your product line?
susyjack* is inspired by the desire to create a basic, simplified, alternative choice in the paper goods market, by trying to use paper as a material in a new way, and by the utilitarian objects I find fascinating at the hardware store. Also, many of the designs come from my own, personal efforts to be ‘lightly’ organized.

The patterns and illustrations on each of the products are inspired by my love of minimalist art. I enjoy the challenge of working with as few elements and colors as possible…and still trying to come out with something that feels spontaneous, artistic and meaningful.

–My life, and many of my friends lives, are so varied…family member, worker, employer, friend…home decorator…community member…the list goes on and on, and I hope that my items address needs for a variety of people, settings, and lifestyles. I love that people often find their own, personal uses for the products. Keeping the items simple and fun is really important to me. None of the items really have a completely prescribed function…and for me, looking at how different people invent new uses for an item is really inspiring and always enlightening!

Name five office products you can’t live without.
…in no particular order…

Classic Silver Paper Clips– They’re a beautiful object, and so very, very useful. Especially for making sure your business card is front and center when you send correspondence.

Sketchbooks– I always have one with me….on my lap…on my desk…or in my purse.

Colored Binders + write-on tabs– I am all about binders…and I never use filing cabinets. Binders are a great way to know right where things are without having to search for them. I always punch and file things right away. I hate piles of paper on my desk and it’s nice to know my stuff is securely stowed somewhere for easy access later.

Pencil Cups– I can’t stand not being able to find my pens, pencils, xacto knife…scissors… I have strategically placed pencil cups all over my workspace so that I don’t waste time trying to find the right implements over and over.

Accordion File– I try and keep all of my bills, receipts and other official, money oriented stuff, in one easy place, organized by month…my little accordion file! By using it, I limit my rummaging time when I’m looking for something, trying to figure out if I paid something, or…eeek! doing my taxes…

What’s your favorite item on See Jane Work?
Oh…there are so many! I have been a SJW fan since WAY before starting my own line!I would have to say it’s a tie between…

The Sew Chic sewing kit– This is such a handy item for the office– and it’s so beautifully packaged.

The Folle Classic Stapler– These are incredible a stapler for life!! They are great quality, and worth every penny. They go through anything without jamming…and it’s just so oddly satisfying to press down that big round silver top!

and…the Coccoina Paste. Call me a nerd, but it’s a beautiful design, safe for kids, and I love the way it smells!

What would be your dream view from your window office?
I know it’s asking for a lot here in nyc, but I’d love to see a big, big tree! I hope it’s not asking for too much, but maybe a spot overlooking Central Park?