12 July 2013

Point and Shoot

Instagram Photo Dump

instagram photo dump @mikpangilinan

I admit, one of the reasons why I converted into an iPhone is because of Instagram. Call it shallow or whatever, but the app is such a convenient and no-brainer tool to take quick snaps of inspiring finds or spontaneous moments that you can share with others stat. I also happen to love photo filters...and mirror selfies, apparently haha (#shameless)! Here are a few highlights from my account (you can follow me @mikpangilinan) from the past few weeks :)

11 July 2013

Pillow Talk

The New Breed of Pillow Covers

Throw pillows--love 'em or hate 'em. I've encountered some people who loathe throw pillows because they think they're just decorative pieces whose sole purpose is to make sleeping or lounging around difficult because you have to put them aside each friggin' time you do so. Personally (and that's because I'm bias), I love them. A lot. That doesn't mean you have to overkill your bed or sofa with these fluffy things though. Throw pillows help "soften" the look of a space and could act as a decorative accent if you can't repaint your walls.

Speaking of which, how cool are these throw pillow covers from DENY Designs? I'm always a fan of anything that involves the application of Graphic Design to Interiors and these pillow cases are so awesome that it needs no justification really. How I wish we could have something similar that is readily available, not to mention affordable (outside department stores perhaps?) here in Manila.

02 July 2013

On a Sunny Road Playlist

Have you ever experienced a time wherein you seem to be in some sort of "moment"--it need not necessarily be a momentous or eventful kind, maybe even just as mundane as you sitting on a moving train or vehicle on the way to someplace else when a particular song just pops up in your head or plays on a music player (whichever) when suddenly it hits you that suppose you were a character in a movie (your biopic of course), isn't this insert-title-of-song-here be the perfect soundtrack of that moment? What I'm trying to say is that it's like when Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Zooey Deschanel were ogling in each others' eyes during a train ride to a wedding in their movie 500 Days of Summer and then right on perfect cue "Sweet Disposition" played right in oh so perfect timing. The point where the music was inserted in the scene, the acting and the way it was shot...it melded so well together creating such a beautiful moment. 

I don't know, I guess I'm just one of those weirdos who unintentionally attaches a particular soundtrack to most of the things she experiences regardless of how ordinary or stellar it happens to be. Or maybe sometimes that's what music does to you, it puts you in a musical trance; melody accompanying life as it happens.

This is the reason why this new series post was born. Mik Mix (yeah, yeah because I'm narcissistic like that) is a themed music playlist curated by yours truly. Simple as that and oh, no judging because eventually I may have to put a Miley Cyrus or a 90's boy band somewhere in my future mixes (probably filed under the compilation name of "Guilty Pleasures" or "No Shame"). Walang basagan ng trip haha.

ON A SUNNY ROAD is a compilation of songs which I feel like listening to during a sunny day (....on the road...?) or during afternoon siesta time. The melodies of these songs puts me into good vibes. Happy listening :)

TRACK   01           Amsterdam - Imagine Dragons
                 02           Origami - Capital Cities
                 03           Berlin - Snow Patrol
                 04           Waves - Blondfire
                 05           Kulang - Up Dharma Down
                 06           Blurred Lines - Robin Thicke feat. T.I. & Pharell
                 07           Lady Black - Sons of the Sea
                 08           Spaceman - The Killers
                 09           Called Out of the Dark - Snow Patrol
                 10           Crazy - Gnarls Barkley

30 June 2013

Bakery Design

One of the best feelings in the world (aside from falling in love, receiving your first pay check and having clean nails) is waking up to the warm aroma of freshly brewed coffee and toasted bread, well in my opinion at least. I would have said freshly baked bread, but then again my baking skills haven't reached that level yet ergo bread toast would be realistically suffice for now. Speaking of bread, it has been my life long dream (apart from being an Interior Designer) to be able to own or even just design a bakery.

Most of my friends know this and they would always roll their eyes at me every time we pass by this local clothing store called "Bread and Butter" because I keep on repeatedly telling them of the story of how I used to own a bakeshop (okay it was in The Sims, but still!) of the same name. Somehow it seems to slip my mind every single time (well almost) that I've already told this bit of trivia to the same cluster of people over and over again haha! Anyway, why do I want to own or be part of something that involves the selling of freshly baked bread? Well like I've said, it's about the feeling it triggers when you get that first whiff of that freshly baked batch of awesomeness...or maybe it has something to do with nostalgia. It's like bringing you to a time or moment where everything seems simple, comforting and safe. It brings you home. Wow, that very much just sounded like a Don Draper back there.

Anyway because of this, I'm mostly drawn to bakeries that have an industrial or rustic feel to it. Bread for me is supposed to be a comfort food and what more to make the customer feel this by making the place appear homey and quaint as well. Not unless you're selling "designer breads", which by all means make it look big, shinny and glimmering! So if you ask me, do I feel the same when it comes with burger joints? Well, it is a legitimate question as burgers are part bread...oh what the heck, of course it's an entirely different thing smart arse!

What about you? What are your simple pleasures in life?

Sources: Panscape Bakery by ninkipen! // Elektra by Studioprototype Architects // Valentina Bakery by Masif

26 June 2013

Skinny Houses

Skinny Narrow House

"What do these people from middle-low to low market want? They want or aspire to be like the rich," says to me by one working from the advertising field during a briefing for a collaborative work. Of course those lines weren't the exact ones that were said, but it did went along to something like that as far as I could remember. What I do remember, however, is that I had to bite my tongue so bad just so I won't be tempted to retort a smart-ass cheeky remark since a) I would very much like to finish said project, and b) sometimes in life you just need to know when you have to shut up if you wish to continue working in premeditated harmony. Is it indifference or hypocrisy to do so? Maybe...a bit, okay don't look at me like that! But it's also called reality. Hey, I'm pretty much sure you're guilty of it too at least more than once in your life.

Perhaps I may have placed the remarks of this said person out of context or perhaps not, still regardless of wherever place that individual came from, what I got from it made me uncomfortable...and dare I say, squeamish? I guess this person did have some point since just like it was told in history, the lower classes then for example would try imitating the intricate wall patterns in the houses (more like mansions) of the rich that brought about the invention of wallpapers, which in turn is quite ironic since nowadays only those with money can actually afford to have decent wallpapers installed in their abodes. But I don't know...something about that statement seems quite off for me. Maybe it has to do with that cliche saying that "times are different now" and I find that people in today's time have more freedom to express their own sense of character or identity regardless of which social bracket they belong to. Or maybe I'm just one of those who believe in making the most of what you currently got and working it instead of pretending to be having more than what you actually have.

This brings me to what I really wanted to talk about--Skinny Houses. What the heck are Skinny or Narrow Houses, you ask? No, it's not spaces on diet, but it's an uncharacteristically narrow but (often) tall house that in my opinion, the Japanese had done so well thus far compared with others. Just like what I've been saying, even though you may have a small lot or land area it doesn't mean you can't have an interesting or a house built with character. I think small houses (as compared to McMansions) have the advantage of having more playful or edgy architectural design because can you imagine having it look like these (see photo above to understand what the hell I'm talking about) on a residential structure having a total area equivalent of hectares? It would look somewhat weird I think, unless you're actually going for the whole Sydney Opera House look or you want to live in your own personal version of a museum. It's okay, I'm not judging (that ain't sarcasm, by the way). To each their own, right?

I think these type of structures are great alternatives to those planning on building a one-storey but very wide house as their starter home. This is also ideal for those owning small lots and would work more or look better if they go taller (read: proportions and compensation for those claustrophobic housemates/guests). Plus, in areas that are flood-prone having tall homes doesn't seem too bad of idea at all. And off topic, how cool is it that your house be named something other than insert-family-surname-here Residence? Doesn't "Lucky Drops House" sound way better? Not to mention, it's a very good conversation starter.

Anyway, how about you? Are you willing to go for tall and skinny?

18 June 2013

Mu Noodle Bar

Mu Noodle Bar by Jagnus Design Studio

It's actually pretty much easy to spot when I've crammed a rendering on my plate back when I was still a design student, and since I'm already free from the said institution (okay I didn't mean to make it sound mental), here's my little confession: if it only or mostly consist of wood, concrete and black/white there is a high probability that it was a byproduct of last-minute coloring on my part. Hey, it's easy to do without compromising aesthetic impact. Ask any other Interior Design student!

But just because I use these particular finishes mostly when I'm cramming doesn't make them any less effective in an aesthetic sense. Matter of fact I actually dub the pairing of these finishes as combinations you can hardly go wrong with. Think of it like your basic white tee, you can pair it up with almost anything and hardly could look wrong with it. While these materials are more or less a given recipe for good-looking success, playing with the form of the space is the key to make it different from the rest.

neutral minimalist wood black white concrete

This brings me to Mu Noodle Bar designed by Jagnus Design Studio, the dudes behind the awesome Ronac Art Center and the most interesting Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf branch I've ever been to. Since the recent re-opening of Glorieta 1, my family and friends have been in this restaurant a couple of times already. Although the service of some of the servers still have room for improvement (they usually seem so cranky or not warm and sometimes ignoring you when you call them...and yes, they know we were talking to them), I like their ramen and the ambiance of the place. You know when you just want to have a place to go to for good food and good conversations? This is one of those places for me. And have you seen their custom-made chairs? I spazzed out during my first time eating here.

It's nice that people are giving more importance with design in general nowadays. Apart from earning money from the part of these business owners, it's also good that you're giving back the customers an experience worth spending to :)

14 June 2013

How to Use Purple in Interiors

Purple Interior DesignPurple Interior Design

Well folks it's official. Summer days are gone too soon (yep, again with those song puns) and rainy season is in the air...literally as it has been pouring kittens and puppies here in Manila for the past week. With the changing of tides come with the transition of colors as well, at least mostly in the wardrobe department. Anyway, all these thoughts of rainy season inspired me to write this post about the color purple (or aubergine, lavender, lilac, violet--whichever you prefer my dear reader).

I think purple seems to be a fitting color to reflect the doldrums of this gloomy bed weather. Not a lot of people are fond of this color because it gets discriminated like the color pink aka it's deemed as too girly or too Barney, but in my opinion it isn't entirely true. Just look at the sample photos above. This shade of purple that is closely gray (trivia: mix violet and yellow in your watercolor palette to improvise a gray shade instead of black and white) and black gives the interiors a more relaxing and less harsh feel as oppose to actually using just black and gray, which can sometimes appear flat and cold. Pair it up with deep but saturated color accents to make the room pop.

The deeper and toned down shades of purple makes room for a mildly dramatic but relaxing room that is neither too feminine or masculine. For those looking for a gender-neutral color and can't stand anymore white, black and gray, you might want to consider these purple-infused palettes.

30 May 2013

Boutique Hostels

Some of my friends would label me as “high-maintenance” when it comes to being their traveling companion (and perhaps in some other areas of life in general), but what can I say? Do I apologize for wanting to have at least a clean toilet (not even a high-tech modern one, just for Pete’s sake a decent and clean bathroom) during travels? Do I apologize for wanting to sleep on nice hotel-grade beddings with a back-friendly mattress complete with awesome toiletries for me to take back home (I know most of you are guilty of this so don't you dare look at me funny)? Do I apologize for preferring glamping over plain ol’ camping? As I would fondly tell my relatives and friends, walang basagan ng trip.

I suppose I’m just one of those who loves to relax when they travel. I would like to travel to see the architecture (and of course interiors), learn about the culture, eat good food and basically to explore without getting stressed out. I get others who would like to travel for the sake of traveling without caring if they sleep wherever or eat packed noodles or canned goods during the duration of their travel and for me that’s okay, that’s fine and that’s their thing. Walang basagan ng trip.

With the abundance of airfare promos and all that marketing pizzaz on budget traveling, I learned from some of my friends about hostels which basically are accommodations mainly targeted to backpackers and budgeted travelers. Usually they have a dormitory setting and for someone who is on the paranoid side I couldn't really see myself in that kind of travel setting unless I know all the people who would be staying in that room with me. See? High-maintenance. But then a friend of mine posted a photo of a hostel he stayed at somewhere in Asia that got me interested in this particular set-up. Add the effective advertising of MNL Boutique Hostel on Facebook (it kept popping out in my feeds that I eventually just gave in and clicked on their page), and my interest on hostels, boutique hostels in particular, piqued. Thus, this entry was born!

So yeah anyway, most photos I've seen of hostels are on the quirky and hip side mainly to attract the type of clients that they want. For those in their 20s or 30s who enjoy traveling, have limited budget but still want to stay in a decent place, I think this is something worth considering. Heck looking at these photos, I myself am also reconsidering my take on the matter. Here are some hostels that caught my interest:

How about you? Are you willing to try out hostels locally and/or abroad? :)

11 May 2013

Canmake Philippines

I'm not exactly a "beauty blogger" so it came as a surprise to me when I was invited by Canmake Philippines to a beauty workshop at The Wine Museum. After the initial surprise had worn off, the information finally sinked in that Canmake is finally going to be available locally! Yeeees! Even if I'm not entirely a beauty blogger, I'm a self-proclaimed make-up junkie (my friends could strongly back me up on this) and I've raved about some of my favorite Canmake products once before. I've been getting my own supply of Canmake from Sasa aka the make-up McDonald's/Starbucks in Hong Kong and so far I've been happy with all my purchases.

10 May 2013

09 May 2013

Glossy Cover Swoon

Have you seen the latest cover of Vogue Living Australia? Someone please pick up my jaw from the floor 'cause if that ain't lovely then I'm not sure what is! Granted that the color scheme is inspired by the French flag, but for me it's a clusterfudge of berry-gooey awesomeness. Sorry, but I have a weakness for the whole blueberry-strawberry color combination. Plus, the scrunched up bulldog (French, yes) adds up cute points...and to think I have a sort-of phobia with dogs (childhood trauma, don't ask).

I also loved the relaxed don't-give-a-crap styling. A good balance of color and style that isn't too masculine or feminine. So starting couples out there who are arguing on their home decor, you might wanna consider this scheme. Speaking of, at the beginning of this year I collaborated with a friend to style a home catalogue for SM Hypermart. The challenge was to only use things found in SM Hypermart...which I think doesn't need further commentary ;)

Although the task presented itself to be quite a challenge due to certain limitations, it is not an impossible one. They have a lot of nice and colorful accessories that would also look striking on camera so for one shot I practically picked every red and blue decor I could find. I added a splash of yellow (hello primary colors or as I'd like to label it: blueberry, strawberry and lemon) for added visual interest. Of course it's no Vogue, but for those who are looking for a similar feel in terms of color and has a tight budget then this is something you can go for--accessories, accessories, accessories (and oh, paint color too)!

27 April 2013

Five for 5

The Basics of Home Entertaining

Home Entertaining Essentials
So to give y'all (wait...when did I start talking...nevermind) a break from my sappy realizations amidst the crisis that is Quarter Life, here's another Five for 5 list dedicated to...(insert drumroll please)...home entertaining!

I grew up in a household that loves to entertain guests and actually makes an effort in fixing up the table even if we're only having a simple dinner for 6-10 people. Out of all the seven dwellings (read here) we've lived in, we always consider it if it's fit for entertaining visitors. Given the nature of my profession, I am automatically bestowed the task of sprucing it up regardless if it's my guests or not.

Sometimes you want to have different looks or set ups, but obviously have a limited budget. This is especially true when you're just starting out with your own home or have zero clue on what items to get as they are so many. Based on my experience, some of the pieces you can keep in stock or splurge on are the following five since these pieces practically go with anything and can instantly turn any table top from drab to fab. Consider these like your perfect basic white tee that goes along with anything and almost any occasion.

  1. Silver or Stainless Steel Utensils - It would be nice to have it in more simple and clean lines so that you can use them on both casual and elegant setups. 
  2. Simple Plates & Plate Chargers - I would recommend if you can stock up on plates that are white or bisque-colored. Plate chargers add a bit more of elegance and I would often recommend it in silver or gold because I would consider them as the "oomph neutrals" or in words that are more simple and sweet, lakas lang makasosyal.
  3. Table Cloths in Black, Gray and White - If you have the budget for colored ones and with patterns, then I say go for it. But those with tight pockets you may want to focus more on the following colors: black or dark gray, light gray, beige white or crisp white. These are good color bases in case you want to have setups with bright or non-neutral color accents. You can never go wrong with these.
  4. Clear Drinking Glasses & Vases - Invest in good drinking glasses with clean lines. Same goes with the vases. I usually recommend something with clean lines and lesser details for those with limited budget because they can go for both casual to (almost) formal. 
  5. Tea Lights - Stock up on tea candles....and I mean a LOT. They can instantly add drama and ambience to any table top. Let them float on top of a clear vase filled with water and pebbles (or shells) and bam, you already have a simple but chic center piece. Place them beside the vases near your floral arrangement or on each step of your stairs for drama. Not only do they provide ambiance and decor, they also help ward off the pesky mosquitos while eating. They also have ones that are battery-powered if you're concerned about the heat it produces, though they might not be as effective in warding off the insects. 

25 April 2013

The House We Live In #2

GLORY DAYS--a time in the past regarded as being better than the present, or so says Google. This is exactly how I felt whenever I would get a glimpse of this...this evidence of our so-called "Glory Days" as a student, which is also perhaps why for more than a year or two it had been proudly "showcased" at the bottom or top most part of our bookshelf, basically away from the easy accessibility of my near-sighted eyes. It was only recently while doing our annual "spring rearranging of furniture" that my mother had noted why I don't place it in a more, shall we say "eye-level" location? At that time I simply shrugged it off, blaming it on misplaced humility and so there it is now at the place seen in the photograph above..........beside my working table.

If I were more cartoon-ishly dramatic (okay fine I am), I would have squinted my eyes at it and accuse it with lines going along like "wutcha lookin' at buster" in my most mobster-gangsta voice. It sits there like a threat, daunting you constantly as if saying "is that the only thing you got?". I know, I know, I should be more proud of this accomplishment. It says so on Google, trophies are decorative objects or prizes for some victory or success (and yes, because Google is TRUTH...okay I kid). But sometimes, especially with that eerie lighting, it also seems like a looming threat that you can be just a one-hit wonder. Ah yes, again with the over thinking and unjustified fears. Boo hoo.

Perception, people. Being humble is good, it's just that sometimes overdoing it leads to instances such as the ones mentioned above. I say, we worked darn hard for it and dammit if we don't own it! I refuse to let it be a symbol of threat, instead I want it to be a reminder of how we were at that time. We weren't the strongest bunch and at times we hear things that made us doubt, friendships were indeed tested, we basically lacked sleep and money, but we still managed to rise above the challenges thrown to us and I won't apologize for basking in the glory of its sweet, sweet reward. I may feel otherwise if I know we didn't work for it, but we sure as hell did.

So in times when I feel like my continuing efforts are not producing the results I desire, I would take a bit of my time looking at this tangible evidence to remind me that once we were able to succeed at a time we thought we couldn't. We pursued, we persevered and if it happened once, making it happen again is not impossible.

09 April 2013

In Your 20s: Living the Quarter Life

from the movie "The Graduate"

Living the Quarter Life is like being tugged in opposite directions. Some people around your age--perhaps friends or classmates whom you used to play jackstones with during break times or people you were getting wasted with during your party hey days would either start getting hitched or sperminated (ergo pregnant), promoted to higher positions in their respective careers or even have their own booming businesses. 

And then there's you, appearing to be "stuck" between being young and old. Maybe you're single or in a relationship that may or may not lead to the altar or being in a job that doesn't make you feel fulfilled or happy or makes you feel like you're in some kind of career rut. The feeling as if you're not moving according to the grand "plan" where by your late 30's you're suppose to have a financially stable job and supporting your own hypothetical spouse and mini-me's. The seeping paranoia that how come everyone seems to be moving forward and you're still floating somewhere in between. Oh the aimlessness, frustrations and whatnots of the inevitable and over thinking!
Benjamin: I'm just...
Mr. Braddock: ...worried?
Benjamin: Well...
Mr. Braddock: About what?
Benjamin: I guess about my future.
Mr. Braddock: What about it?
Benjamin: I don't know. I want it to be...
Mr. Braddock: ...to be what?
Benjamin: ...Different.
-from The Graduate (1967) 
I've graduated from college for almost two years now and apart from learning that stepping out in the real world for the first time is like going through another phase of puberty (read here), we also have to deal with the inevitable "Quarter Life Crisis". Some would define this phase as the adjustment period when one person transitions to becoming a full-pledged adult. As for me, I see it as some sort of job interview (or life interview?). You know how when you're applying for jobs they usually ask how you see yourself in their company 10 years from now? Answer that in terms of how you see yourself, your life in general 10 years from now and huzzah you just found your golden ticket to get out of QLC!

We were always told that we should follow our dreams. When I was in highschool I already knew I wanted to become an Interior Designer, it was my dream career. And so I went to college and took up a course on BS-Interior Design. Immediately after that I went ahead and took the board exams to get my professional license. When I passed, I was ecstatic beyond words. I was finally and could officially call myself as an Interior Designer, my ultimate career dream! When the elated feeling toned down and reality starts settling in there it came...........

........"and then what?".

To say that I was at loss is a severe understatement. I didn't know what to do next. Should I join a firm or venture on my own? Should I specialize in this area or take up masters in this so and so? In short, I have to find another dream, something less vague and more tangible......a goal (or goals). But of course, like anything else in life, balance is an important factor. We worry too much about discovering our goals and preparing for our "future" that we sometimes forget about living in the present.

I suppose living in our 20's is about relearning, rediscovering and having a poop load of realizations about ourselves and life as we know it. It is the time where we plant the seeds or set the foundations of how we wanted to grow out or become after those 10 years. It is about identifying and remaking your dreams and transforming them into goals. It is the time where we are young but can legally drink alcohol during lunch. It is the time to regret nothing. If it's good then it's awesome, if it's bad then it's an experience to learn from. Live, laugh, love and discover--that is living in your 20s is like and perhaps even beyond. And yes, I'm aware most of what I've just said are from motivational quotes on Instagram. #iregretnothing

21 March 2013

Color Board: Summer 2013

While some parts of the hemisphere are celebrating their "First of Spring", here in our local tropical islands we are melting under the heat of summer sunshine. I've noticed that this particular summer most people seem to either go for neons or pastels. I, on the other hand, am currently inspired by this particular swimsuit (don't even ask why) and basically the colors you usually see in tropical tie-dyed shirts. Yes, even the tacky ones you see in some of the souvenir shops and thus having said these I have come up with yet another one of my self-proclaimed summer color palette of choice for this year. For the record, I did not come up with the names of these colors as they were based from Pantone's Fashion + Home Color Guide. Yep, so don't look at me funny since those are legit ones.
Summer 2013 Color Palette Pantone Fashion + Home Color Guide
Not just applicable to your sunny apparel, you can use these colors to change the feel of your home as well. Apply it on your throw pillows, placemats, heck even dinnerware and curtains. So how about you? What's your 2013 summer color? :)

19 March 2013

Triangle: The Stripes Alternative

Do you sometimes stare at your blank plain wall thinking what the hell you can do with it to spruce it up? Put up a new coat of another solid bright color? Paste a new layer of flowery wallpaper? Or go for "bold" and run some stripes on it? 

Although stripes is a semi-easier way of adding some oomph to your plain walls, surfaces and other...well plain home stuff, sometimes it can feel a bit...uh what's a milder term for overrated? Not that I have anything against stripes, I mean personally I like them, but if you're looking for something else other than that and you can't be bothered with polka dots, one awesome alternative to it are (insert drumroll for optional drama) TRIANGLES

Isosceles, equilateral, obtuse...whatever it is I love how you can use this one shape and make it into different geometric patterns. Mix and match it as well with different colors and bam, you get kaleidoscopic visual goodness. It's a bit "more work" than stripes but less than work when manually painting circles and round shapes, so if you're feeling crafty go for triangle!

14 March 2013

The Many Faces of Julia

fornasetti julia plates

Meet Julia. I'm sure somewhere along the way, you may have stumbled upon an Interior Design googled photo of this damsel here and one may even say that she's the alternate Mona Lisa...well at least the spoofed version of the woman with an enigmatic smile (who we actually learned wasn't really smiling, the shadow just made it appear as if she was so). Julia over here has undergone several transformations, one of my favorites being her own version of Charlie Chaplin:

Fornasetti Charlie Chaplin
Julia ala Chaplin. Complete with 'stache and heavy eyeliner.
So who the heck is this Julia person?! Well just like Leo Da Vinci (haha yeah feeling close) is to Mona, well Julia over here is created by Piero Fornasetti, or like any other super famous people wherein they simply could go by their last name and still be known as themselves--the effin' Fornasetti, would suffice. Julia was inspired by a soprano woman back then by the name of Lina Cavalieri and the rest as we call it is history. Now her face is on plates, wallpapers, jars, commodes and who knows what else and quite frankly I don't care I just love how quirky she is.

Combining humor and taste, I think Fornasetti's Julia made it happen. Nuff said.

25 February 2013

Design Talk: Details #1

EHA Family Trust Residen in Wilson, Wyoming

Do not be fooled by simplicity, especially when it comes to design. Sometimes the most simple, clean-looking or seamless appearance of a design consumes the most time of brain work. Concealing details and making them look as if they aren't there takes careful deliberation, constant back and forth thinking and revision and meticulous conceptualization. So the next time you see a design, whether it be a product or space that looks simple and yet burns a big hole in a pocket, remember to check the details and see if it's worth the hole. 

This EHA Family Trust Residence in Wilson, Wyoming is a nice example of having subtle but really nice interior details. Indoor water features used as room dividers in residential spaces aren't anything new, but I love how it was executed in this particular space. The green lighting against the blue waters enhanced by the glass makes a nice play of colors and a very nice art piece in itself. Beautiful. 

09 February 2013

Oriental Express: East Meets West

East meets West, gets a kid and the result is glorious. Back in design school I've always been fascinated with Chinoiserie. I loved how it complimented the French Rococo so beautifully and how it gives a touch of exotic-ness to classic decor. Good ol' Google best defines Chinoiserie as "The imitation or evocation of Chinese motifs and techniques in Western art, furniture, and architecture". In contemporary times I feel like Kelly Wearstler is one of those designers who gets to pull this East meets West (and takes it to outer freakin' space in a good way) look. And so in commemoration with the Chinese (or Lunar) New Year, here are some Chinese Oriental-inspired things that I found lovely.

07 February 2013

Birdcages in Interiors

Avian Birdcages Wallpaper by Kenneth James
Birdcage Chandelier via Restoration Hardware
birdcage in interiors

Symbolically birdcages can mean two things: if it's closed it can denote being confined or imprisoned while if opened (with some flock of birds bursting out just for added drama) may mean "being free at last". I guess this is the "charm" that continues to lure people to birdcages, the way it represents one's struggle to be free and the actual state of being so. Kind of romantic in a Shakespearean sort-of way isn't? What I love about using birdcages in decorating is how it comes in different shapes, sizes and colors. From cathedral to lantern-like shapes, it's as if they have an architectural style of their own. Apart from using birdcages as actual cage for birds, I also like using it as candle holders, a conversational piece of house decor or as a pattern for fabrics, wallpapers or even decorative decals. See how I used ours in my previous post.

Ain't that lovely?

06 February 2013

Swinging 60s

swinging 60s
There was a time when retro-themed parties where all at rage and people would often come up dressed like a human character from Scooby Doo. When I was younger I didn't really appreciate the retro so much because I find the psychedelic and groovy patterns of this era as bordering tacky, but knowing better now I had a change of heart and have in fact even developed a somewhat soft spot for the revolutionary color power Sputnik decade. What not a lot of people know though is that most of your favorite "modern" or mid-century iconic furniture actually sprouted from this timeline. Those chairs you love from Dwell Magazine or most of your pegs from Scandinavian Interiors? Yep, most likely they came from the 60s. So if you were like me back then when I didn't know better and didn't like the 60's as much, well better think again my friend!

04 February 2013

That Lovely Find

Homeless HK


One of the many things I love about traveling (not just abroad, but locally as well) is exploring the neighborhood for nice "hole-in-the-wall" places--stores, restaurants, art galleries...well you get the idea. In a culture where the mall is where you have it all, there are still those rare moments when you want to seek something different or "traditional" such as walking around a corner of a street, spotting an old building with a small shop on the first few floors and get yourself be mind blown as you enter out of innate human curiosity. This was the case during our much recent trip from Hong Kong.  

In a seemingly old building around a corner near Forever 21 in Causeway Bay, I've been seeing this home decor store, Homeless, but it was only during our previous trip that we were able to explore the store. Lo and behold is a retail sanctuary of Scandinavian goodness--from chairs, tables, lightings to random home decor knick knacks, it's a visual feast for those who like hip, vintage and bohemian-looking things. Of course some of the items aren't exactly thrift-shop cheap, but they are definitely worth looking and considering at. I've discovered that some of the items from this store are also the ones displayed at Lane Crawford, though if they came from Homeless is beyond my knowing. 

They also have another store (their flagship store actually) in Central, Hong Kong. Check it out especially if you're fond of Scandinavian designs or our local Dimensione store. I've also been posting other photos from my recent trip in my Instagram (or as cynics would call it, hipstagram) account. Follow me @mikpangilinan. Enjoy the photo-heavy post ;)

28 January 2013

Bright Lights, Bigger City

Colored lighting at Home
It seems to me that a lot of people have a love-hate relationship when it comes to warm white lighting. That's the yellow-ish light you have at home that makes you look so darn gorgeous next to a severe case of migraine and heat flush (if it's not the LED kind). Sometimes the warm lighting can be too much you feel like you need to "balance" it by alternating bulbs of warm and cool (that's the white-looking slash ones usually used in offices and hospitals ergo unflattering if you love looking at yourself) lighting, which I do not entirely condone of. Alternating the two lightings is different however from strategically combining them, the latter which I approve more of. I'll probably get into my discomforts regarding that issue on a separate entry.

Having said all these, I feel like lighting when it comes to Residential Interiors is severely under appreciated. It needs more show time of its own, people! And I don't mean just using cool and warm whites, I'm talking about the colored ones as well. Do not be afraid, your house won't look like a cheap motel room or a lair-o-pimp night club if used in moderation and in combination with "neutral" lightings such as the cool and warm whites I've been constantly blabbering about.

Want to change the mood or ambiance of your house without having to bother painting? Try using colored fluorescents (or whichever kind you're using) on your cove lighting. Have your own pool or any water feature at home? Throw out those yellow lights and try using blue or purple lighting to make your koi pond look so ethereal it would be as if you're in Avatar. All your walls are white and you just sometimes want a pop of color depending on your mood? Yep, colored lighting.

Simply look at the photos above to see how it could be done without looking too theatrical. And I kid you not it can be done.

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