A Feast for the Eyes

One of my favorite things to do while fluffing and straightening in the Room & Board showroom is to find the fine details and happy accidents that make it such a special place for customers. People are often surprised to reach out and find that our plants are real. Our selection of coffee table books would be worth coming in for itself. And so often, the way that shadows lie or the color in a magazine cover reinforce the beautiful natural characteristics of the furniture itself.

So I’m dedicating my first blog post to some of the small touches that help make the Room & Board showroom such an inspiring place to work. Some are on purpose, some just landed that way, but they all contribute to the depth of the customer’s visual journey—

Snooter-doot goes for a ride! In the background are a Bennett dresser by Spectra, a vintage French school map, and the Nest crib by El Greco:


This one happened by chance. While hanging the new Helene pendant in our Complete Your Home department, our Cleaning Associate, Jim Pontrelli, accidentally decapitated one of the orchids. For a day or two, the fugitive bloom made a great colorful accent to the department’s pink color story. It’s lying on the James end table (in this year’s new Sand finish) alongside a Callisto bowl by Tony Wurman and some appropriately tropical prop books:


One of our Design Associates is a connoisseur of fine spirits, so his bottles help show off the usefulness of the Trace shelf as a bar. The light working through an empty Bastille whiskey bottle reinforces the gleam of Bell Manufacturing’s stainless steel:


The misunderstood vulture is one of my favorite birds, so I was glad that when Sharon Montrose did an exclusive collection of animal portraits for Room & Board, she included nature’s clean-up crew alongside the more popular horse and leopard. I have to admit, this guy does look a little ominous staring off into that dark corner, but his plumage provides a great compliment to Room & Board’s rich Charcoal paint. The luxurious walnut on the sideboard looks great in this lighting, too:


This actor’s windblown locks photographed in black and white on a New York Times magazine cover are a great color and texture compliment to the Bram sofa in distressed Lagoon Smoke leather. The table top is Fawn quartz:


Here black-and-white text and natural elements on a book cover are in the shadow of a (real) plant. The book’s colors and texture reinforce the play of black and white, as well as rough and smooth, in the Marbled Quartz table top and the Arden ivory/black rug by Delos:


This new fiddle fig plant near our front entrance has already had a couple positive comments from customers, and its shape is a perfect complement to the midcentury vibe of the Murphy sofa from Precedent and this year’s new James tables. A Case Study planter and Sequence rug round out the look, which would be right at home in the illustrations of retro artist Shag:


Here the bright orange text on the cover of Dwell magazine echoes the vivid colors of our Sunbrella outdoor pillows, while the angular, steel lines of the cover photo fit right in with the Graphite powder-coated steel of Montego furniture and an Onda serving tray:


Even the clipboard I’ve been using to update our PIM inventory list looks better in the light of a Glow pendant from Hennepin Made. So with that, I’m back to work. Keep your eyes out for all the little happy interactions that make design shine in every part of your life: