Last Thursday, we were lucky enough to attend an "exclusive" designer preview. This is one of our longer posts, so sit back and get organized with the Fall collection from West Elm.
The evening showcased how the company is moving beyond their original roots into different colors, textures, quality, sustainability and ways to spruce up your home using singular objects. The man behind West Elm design, Paulo Kos, flew in from Brooklyn for the shop talk. We weren't sure, but it looked like 150 interior designers, home experts, trend-setting writers attended, as well as corporate Williams Sonoma and West Elm staff. The store closed early to the general public and was lusciously stocked with an abundant supply of delicious products.
Spotted at the party was our friend and original Beverly Hills Organizer, Linda Koopersmith. Vanessa De Vargas of Turquoise introduced us to Laure J. and Abby S. of Apartment Therapy Los Angeles. Carlo Rios, Design Ambassador of the Santa Monica store jetted around the party taking care of everyone and making them feel welcomed.
Afterwords, friend Laurie March of Laurie March Design joined us for Mojitos at Border Grill next door along with Lauren Messiah, ThisNext Marketing Manager of Fashion and Beauty (and aka Fashion Kitty) and Cory O'Malley Community Development Manager at ThisNext. We've been doing some mini-product reviews over at their site, check out our profile here. The mysterious power of the Mojito ended our fun night of design, wine and dine.
We have a full recap of the in-store event, so keep reading for some of the cool organization products West Elm has rolling out for Fall.
We tried to get a shot of the West Elm location on 4th Street in Santa Monica, but trees were in the way.
The party had just begun, but you can see they're doubling the Parson's Table as the bar. Having furniture play double duty is one of the keys to an organized home. We like the simple drawers inside the table, good enough to stash the mail, your keys, even your dog leash. If we recall, this table is (or is going to be) one of their best-selling products.
In the presentation part of the program, Paulo Kos, Director of Design for West Elm few in from New York City to talk about the roots of the company, where ideas for products come from, and how the Fall collection is a welcomed departure from what they've done in the past. The company marketed their products by doing their catalog photos shoots in controlled studio surroundings, against cement floors and simple surroundings to point out each piece's individuality. The company has moved into more realistic settings.
Here Kos talks about the entertaining products they have rolling out this Fall as well as holiday deco. The company encourages mixing low-end and high-end products for affordibility. He also mentioned new stores opening outside of the United States in Puerto Rico and Toronto, Canada. The lighting at the presentation was terrible for our camera, and there were over 100 people standing behind us. so we could only snap these quick pics.
Right after we checked in, we ran into the energetic Linda Koopersmith, the petite star of Style Network's Clean House. We asked for a picture. She insisted it be near the Prussian blue cotton canvas storage boxes we love so much. How could we say no? Linda is so persuasive!
Another picture of Koopersmith, John Trosko and our friend Laurie March, owner of Laurie March Design. Linda was an awesome award presenter at the 2008 Los Angeles Organizing Awards. Did we talk organizing gossip? Yes. She did not know Jodie Watson was the new organizer on TLC's Real Simple: Real Life. Linda also told me about her Howdini how-to-fold organizing videos and her upcoming products launch (not sure if we're supposed to mention that or not). Seriously, does Linda ever sleep?
Our friend Laurie pointed out this rolling storage rack. What makes it better are the large, sturdy wheels. Paulo Kos said these units are terrific for children's toys and many of their organizational bins and baskets sit neatly inside the cubbies.
This teak bathroom furniture includes a bath tower, stool, medicine cabinet, ladder rack, bath mat and storage caddy. Perfect for quick storage in your powder or guest bathroom. Imagine gorgeous soft towels, some flowers in a short vase and a basket full of sea sponges or books sitting at arm's reach. Or of course you can load it up with bathroom essentials.
These items are from the ceramic pure bath collection. They are quite sturdy and you could use the trays in many rooms around the house not just the bath. We like the canister the best, with its heavy lid, you can lift with just one hand.
The sawhorse work table with steel-plated legs and is functional for an office workspace, but not so for storage. However, if you have a small space, you want to consider using glass to make the room feel lighter. We'd suggest pairing it with an upholstered armed chair to be extra comfortable when working.
Carlo Rios, Design Ambassador at the Santa Monica store, showed me these canisters. They are reminiscent of vintage ceramics I've seen but cannot remember the style. Do you? We can't find these canisters on the website. We noted the quality, Carlo said they were seasonal and will not be around much longer.
We can we say enough about these sturdy cotton canvas storage boxes. Heavyweight, colorful and durable, each has a sewn-in label for you to identify the contents. Also comes in natural, chocolate brown. Shown here is magazine butler, photo box, file box, storage bin and stationery caddy.
These organizing wonders used to be sold at the store formerly known as Hold Everything, but West Elm has got them now. Rejoice!
This is a terrible picture, but we know how useful this lacquer docking station can be if you have iPods, other MP3 players, cell phones and other electronics devises without a home. The company's website says: "wood construction with a glossy lacquered finish. Hinged back holds a surge protector, cords and plugs; rear cutout feeds cords to an outlet. Large drawer stores notes, pens and more."
Laurie said this framed secretary was given an Award from Elle Decor in their Guide to the 10 Most Stylish Secretaries. "Trim, simple, intelligently designed, and a terrific price." At $799, it's a deal.
We invite you to add your comments about our visit, West Elm and their organizing products. What looks good to you?
Pottery Barn Beverly Center holds holiday decorating workshops (12/06)
If you've enjoyed this post and want to see more, please subscribe to our daily emails (Feedblitz) or through the RSS Feed (click here). Options are now available for Twitter (Feedblitz) and your mobi through FEEDM8, too.