Inspired By: LAND

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  LAND artists and designers Caleb Owen Everitt and Ryan Rhodes.

LAND artists and designers Caleb Owen Everitt and Ryan Rhodes.

LAND: Transcending Style and time

Austin, Texas based design studio LAND is a hard act to categorize.

A team that clearly thrives on rethinking what it means to be a 'designer' in the 21st century, LAND creates a unique body of work in a wide variety of medias - from hand-drawn graphics, to linocut prints, to textiles and metalwork, brand campaigns for both digital and print, and, now, LAND even has their own line of limited-edition clothing.

In their own words, LAND is, "[A] house of art, design and thought: a collaboration between American artists and designers, Caleb Owen Everitt and Ryan Rhodes. Through an exploration of typography, iconography, and arrangement of materials, we demonstrate a way of working that transcends a style or time with regard to the art of communication."

Honesty through Imperfection

What inspires us most about this dynamic design duo is their collaborative process and their strong emphasis on how the imperfections of handmade art can bring an honesty and originality to modern graphic design and branding.

Caleb and Ryan have described art as the main source of their inspiration, with their 'sweet spot' being the process of blurring art with design to bring 'feeling' into each of their projects.  When asked about the difference between 'art' and 'design,' the LAND creatives have developed an answer that is both simple and profound, 'art is selfish, design is accommodating.' 

Reclaiming The Past, Always Moving Forward

In an interview with Urban Outfitters, LAND described their process of looking to the past for inspiration in their work: "Most of the type we create is hand done or inspired by historical typography. From old books and signs to hobo scribbles, type that was created by a hand or a machine just feels better than a more modern, digital font. It's more fun to create something custom, or that feels like it came from a real place before you and I were born and will be here after we're dead."

Past LAND Clients Include: Ace Hotel, Deus Ex Machina, Falcon Motorcycles, Levi's, Monster Children, Nike, Patagonia, Poler, Stag Provisions, West America, Woolrich. You can see a longer list here.

Special thanks to LAND for the use of their imagery. All art and design work is the (C) property of www.workbyland.com. Used here with permission.

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  At work in the LAND Studio.  Photo by Chelsea Fullerton  for Urban Outfitters.

At work in the LAND Studio. Photo by Chelsea Fullerton for Urban Outfitters.

  At work in the LAND studio, Austin, Texas.  Photo by Bill Sallans.

At work in the LAND studio, Austin, Texas. Photo by Bill Sallans.

  At work in the LAND studio, Austin, Texas.  Photo by Bill Sallans.

At work in the LAND studio, Austin, Texas. Photo by Bill Sallans.

  Taking a break in the LAND studio, Austin, Texas.  Photo by Bill Sallans.

Taking a break in the LAND studio, Austin, Texas. Photo by Bill Sallans.

Inspired By: Plethora Magazine

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We wanted to highlight the natural beauty and tactility of print by using a format that allowed the craftsmanship to shine trough on an excessive level. Ultimately, we created this kind of otherworldly giant…an object that no one would know exactly what to do with.
  'Anima Mundi:' the latest issues of large format (70cm by 50cm), bi-annual   Plethora Magazine  , created and published by  Peter Steffensen and Benjamin Wernery.

'Anima Mundi:' the latest issues of large format (70cm by 50cm), bi-annual Plethora Magazine, created and published by  Peter Steffensen and Benjamin Wernery.

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An otherworldly Giant

Plethora Magazine is an independent, biannual publication founded in Copenhagen which challenges the bounds of the conventional magazine format — conceptually as well as physically (each page has poster dimensions, 50cm x 70cm). 

Skillfully printed by the monks of a Hindu temple, Plethora Magazine is unlike any other magazine on the planet: no noise, no ads and no logos, just 52 pages of poster-size visual indulgence and tales from the life less ordinary, presented in a careful blend of quirky archive material, wondrous art prints and contemporary artist features.

What inspires us most about Plethora, is how editor Peter Steffensen and art director Benjamin Wernery are curating such a fascinating variety of content - much of it reclaimed from historical ideas, technology, and imagery - to make something entirely new. 

Here are the highlights from our conversation with Peter Steffensen.

First off, tell us about the creative / professional journey that led you to Plethora?

I come from a background in philosophy and so, in  many ways, Plethora is a natural bridge for me between the academic world and the art scene. With Plethora, we are trying to shift the boundaries between the two fields and create a new context for both, essentially blurring the lines between fiction, myth, and science - which I think is an essential aspect of art. 

Was there one main idea that led to creating an oversized magazine now, in the digital age?

Yes, in fact. As you probably know, not that long ago, most magazines published a digital version to supplement their print publication. But now, that relationship has been been inverted. So, the aim for us was to turn all the inherent and presumed 'flaws of print' upside down and then amplify and refine them to a degree were they became attributes, specifically those qualities that are impossible to digitize.

Basically, we wanted to highlight the natural beauty and tactility of print by using a format that allowed the craftsmanship to shine trough on an excessive level. Ultimately, we created this kind of otherworldly giant…an object that no one would know exactly what to do with.

Why did you believe that bigger was better?

Well, we wanted to craft a very particular reading experience. The magazine's size naturally slows down the consumption of content.  Plethora Magazine is designed to actively involve the body so as to change the way we experience the content and then, hopefully, open up a space for reflection.

What we've observed is that the magazine's size does, in fact,  help people to both slow down and become quieter as they flip through and examine the pages - which is one of the hardest things for any of us to achieve these days.

Without giving away any trade secrets, what can you tell us about the printing process?

We are fortunate to work with very skillful printers here in Denmark called Narayana Ashrama Press, which is both a Hindu temple and a high end off-set printers. It’s truly a wonderful place and so, when we print, we actually move in and stay at their guest house during the whole process. This lends a much needed air on calm to an otherwise decision-intensive and hectic process. Don’t think we could make Plethora anywhere else.

what would you say is the 'red thread' that connects the themes of all six issues of Plethora to date? 

We work from a vast and ever-evolving archive of images and subject matter that we have compiled over the years (the crossroads between art and science is definitely a preferred territory for us). And these items make up the reservoir from which we can shape and slowly built a theme for each issue. Honestly,  the themes for some  editions can be years in the making. 

Ultimately, the trick is to create subtle intersections between a variety of narratives in order to bring about the element of wonder, which is essential to Plethora.  We want to create a experience where layers of meaning are endlessly unfolding, so there are new connections being made each time you open an issue. 

What's been the biggest challenge in bringing Plethora out into the world?

Almost from day one we’ve had to carve out our own niche within the world of magazine distribution. Also because it’s such a hybrid between a curated print collection, an object d’art, and a conventional magazine. So seeking out the appropriate platforms and outlets for the magazine has probably been the biggest challenge.

Do you have a favorite feature from the first six issue of Plethora?

Once in a while we manage to stumble on a real gem. And if I was to pick one out of the lot, it would probably have to be the feature on the Selknam tribe of Terra del Fuego (also called the Hain people), from our first issue (see below).

During the long preparation for issue one, we ran across these amazing black and white images of a now extinct tribal culture. They were all wearing these strange tribal masks and their bodies were totally painted and they were standing out in the snow. The whole scene was like something out of a strange and grotesque avant-garde theater productions. 

When we researched the Hain we discovered an incredible and elaborate mythology behind the initiation ritual - more complex than any greek tragedy. 

As it turned out the image we found were taken by a German priest and anthropologist who visited Patagonia in 1923 and who happened to witness and document,  the last ever initiation rite of the Selknam tribe. The entire tribe were murdered by settlers not long after the priest's visit.

So this story just had it all - fierce drama, mystery, forgotten meaning, archetypical signs and symbols - an ancient, universal narrative somehow. Working with this story really helped set the tone and standard for how we choose our features ever since.

What can you tell us about the impact Plethora is having around the world?

Only when an issue of Plethora is exhibited and unfolded in three dimensional space, can the potential of the magazine truly comes across, and the quality of the print can be best appreciated. 

So, from the very beginning we have prioritized traveling exhibitions abroad to show the diversity of our editions and to create experiences for a foreign audience that would have a real impact. And it gives us the opportunity to meet with our collectors in person, which I think is very important for our kind of product.

How would you say that ideas and artifacts, of the past inspire you to create and innovate?

I really appreciate the different traditional crafts that we encounter on our journeys. Especially in Asia, where the artisans have a very different approach to time and craft than we have here in Scandinavia. All in all, I like most esoteric things drenched in mystery and symbols. And much of the work we do on Plethora Magazine is actually one long semiotic journey to extract the meaning behind these.

So, for now, I definitely feel that I'm in the right line of work.

Learn more and shop at www.plethoramag.com

  The  Selknam tribe of Terra del Fuego  from the first issue of  Plethora Magazine .

The Selknam tribe of Terra del Fuego from the first issue of Plethora Magazine.

  Peter Steffensen, Editor In Chief (pictured at right) and Art Director  Benjamin Wernery of  Plethora Magazine.

Peter Steffensen, Editor In Chief (pictured at right) and Art Director  Benjamin Wernery of Plethora Magazine.

The aim for us was to turn all the inherent and presumed ‘flaws of print’ upside down and then amplify and refine them to a degree were they became attributes, specifically those qualities that are impossible to digitize.
— Editor-In-Chief, Peter Steffensen
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Inspired By: Selina van der Geest of NL-GB

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The Reclaimed Brown Board Paneling we used on the outside of our house immediately adds a sense of history and character.
— Selina van der Geest
  Selina van der Geest of NL-GB, p hoto by Venetia Dearden

Selina van der Geest of NL-GB, photo by Venetia Dearden

Introducing Selina van der Geest

Interior designer Selina van der Geest moved to New York from London in 2000. Since coming to America, Selina has worked in the art and decorating business and has now opened her own eclectic showroom near Millbrook, NY, 90 miles north of New York City.

After building her own house in Milan, New York, Selina was inundated with requests to add her unique style and organizational skills to projects for private clients. It has been a natural progression to continue the decorating business she started back in England, bringing a relaxed European feeling to her clients’ houses. She believes in working organically, reflecting in her designs and colors, the natural surroundings of the property she is transforming.

Earlier this year, we sat down with Selina to discuss her work.

Tell us a bit about how your time training in Europe prepared you for the work you do today?

Well, I studied history and art history which gave me a great background for my work in interior design.  I was lucky to combine both fields working for Colnaghi, the old master art gallery in London, designing stands and galleries as well as working with important art works. It was there that I learned woodworking and curtain making, thus giving me a very hands on approach to my work. The European aesthetic is different and has certainly continues to influence my work here in the States.

How did you choose Upstate, New York as the base for your home and business?  

My husband, who is Dutch, bought a house Upstate in 1983, when he first came to America.  I moved to New York from London in 2000 and since I share his love for the area, we purchased land in 2002 and decided to build a house. As soon as we finished the house, I was asked to help with other projects and so my work Upstate evolved.

what is the red thread that connects all of your design interests?

I am very inspired by nature and the environment around me, whether Upstate or on my travels. I often  incorporate natural elements into my designs.  Bottom line, I strive to create original homes and furniture for my clients and that's what drives me creatively.

What can you tell us about the design process for your own home in Milan, NY?

Before even buying the land, we bought an early 17th Century Louis XIII mantle in Bordeaux, France when we were there for a wedding.  Then, we designed the house around this and a pair of antique Chinese doors.  Coming from homes built of stone in England, I wanted to achieve the same sense of history and character in our new home Milan.

The Reclaimed Brown Board Paneling we used on the outside of our house, immediately adds a sense of history and character.  I stained the cut edge of all the batons, so we didn’t have fresh cuts showing.  It also has the advantage of requiring less maintenance.

Inside we have a large open room featuring Reclaimed Hudson Company Beams, which, along with the Bordeaux mantlepiece, give a very European character to the house.  On the floors we used wide white oak boards, which we left untreated so they could develop a patina over time.  The result is a home which feels very settled, relaxed and natural.

What were some of the key design goals for your new home?

We love cooking so wanted to have a big open space that would allow us to cook while also enjoying the fire and the living area.  You enter through a mudroom with the large Chinese doors creating a welcoming opening into the great room and a view through the French doors to the pool beyond. We often have our family and guests staying and having separate bedroom wings and a guest apartment help to give us all space, but a wonderful place to congregate.

We built the house in seven months and it was certainly an advantage to be on site daily. I spent many days shoveling snow or helping the framer when someone didn’t show up and nothing was delayed waiting for decisions.  I also insist on a clean and tidy job site, believing that a messy environment encourages sloppy work.

What's next for Selina van der Geest?

I am working on a new house being built in Sharon, CT for a client whose apartment I designed in the city. We’re combining a traditional stone farmhouse with painted barn buildings, a stone potting shed and an English green house. The goal is for the house to feel as if it’s been there for hundreds of years and has evolved over time.  Likewise, my goal is for the interior is to feel as if it’s been collected over the years, with interesting accents, textures and natural colors.

Lastly, how would you describe your experience working with The Hudson Company?

The Hudson Company have a wonderful selection of materials and a great aesthetic. From the sampling process to selection, they have listened and understood what we are after. Whether its a small order of individual planks and beams or a bigger order of  pre-finished wood floors, The Hudson Company has  always provided us with quality, professional services.

Visit NLGB.com to learn more about Selina's work.

Learn more about Reclaimed Hand Hewn Beams here and Reclaimed Brown Board Paneling here.

Below is a sampling of more interiors by Selina, with photos by Jane Beiles for The New York Times.

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The Hudson Company have a wonderful selection of materials and a great aesthetic. From the sampling process to selection, they have listened and understood what we are after.
— selina van der geest
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The Hudson Company + Frama CPH

  Custom mood board by Frama CPH for The Hudson Company.

Custom mood board by Frama CPH for The Hudson Company.

The Hudson Company + Frama

Scan almost any list of top design studios coming out of Scandinavia, and you will come across the name Frama - a Copenhagen-based design shop and creative team at the very forefront of Scandinavian chic. With their one-of-a-kind office space in Copenhagen's historic Nyboder neighborhood, Frama is a trendsetting brand that refuses to be boxed in by industry adjectives, which is appropriate, as the brand is constantly reinterpreting, rediscovering, and reimagining what it means to be a 21st century design leader (we think the photos below speak volumes about the quality and timeless elegance of Frama's work).

Here at The Hudson Company, we have been fans of Frama's inspired work for a long time, so, of course, we were thrilled this past summer, when they graciously agreed to create a custom mood board for us. Choosing from our full product range, Frama chose to focus in on our Select Harvest White Oak [Barley Finish] to use as the backdrop for their custom mood board.

Read on for some insights into what keeps the creativity flowing at Frama and how they brought this inviable mood board to life for The Hudson Company.

5 Questions with Frama

Tell us about the items included in your mood board, what's their origin story? Why did you select them for this mood board?

The objects of focus in our mood board design is our line of Aj Otto Stoneware - designed by Frama Studio here in Copenhagen. The ceramics are hand made in Denmark, which provides each product in the collection a unique feel. Although it has a Scandinavian aesthetic, the idea for this collection came from some old Italian glass food-containers discovered during some southern travels a few years ago.

Along with the Aj Otto stoneware, we've also included a variety of vintage and new brass pieces in our mood board. The cutlery is from different flee-markets, while the candleholders are designed by a young danish designer Maribel Carlander for Frama. Cut out of solid, untreated brass, these candle holders are a careful study in geometry, proportion and composition. Lastly, the E27 Table Light (also designed by Frama), is a simple, industrial and straight forward lamp which provides a cozy light to any table setting.        

Where does that team at Frama turn for inspiration, what sources are consistently inspiring?

Most often our best inspiration comes from dialogues with interesting people we meet on our travels, with whom we collaborate, or from people who stop by our studio.  

Overall, it's a central focus of ours to find the right balance between the traditional and the contemporary aesthetics, so we often look back in time for our inspiration whether that's to old art-posters or to historical building detail. Many of Frama’s design ideas grow out of the interior design projects we work on. We find that great inspiration can come from nature, art. architecture, as well from basic shapes and forms. 

Color and texture seems to be especially important to the items and collections that Frama produces: can you talk about that a little bit? 

Yeah, sure. Everything we do stems from an idea that we call "slow production." We use solid woods, untreated metals and stone to create both a aesthetically pleasing product, but also something that will “live” for a long time - these are long lasting and “honest” materials. Our design language is pretty straight forward, based in simple geometry and subtle, natural colors. These are the elements at the center of the Frama design universe. But we also love rich colors.

Choosing the right colors is essential for curating the final expression any space will have. So, with that in mind, we really thoughtful with how we use color - both in painted and non-painted finishes - so that everything is complementary. That's how we developed our St. Paul's Blue paint color with Jotun and it's how we got started with our upcoming line of colors based on the interiors of an historic Copenhagen space (coming in 2017).    

Is there a driving design vision or 'manifesto' that you use in your work and collaborations?

We often work within the area of re-interpreting design archetypes. Therefore, the objects of our collection often signals a return to basics. Our vision is always to come up with something new, but we try to maintain a historical feel to everything we do. The synergy between the past and present is important for our design process. Our main interests lay somewhere between two opposite poles - that space between classical and the contemporary design, that incorporates both digital and analogue production. 

Why did your team chose Select Harvest White Oak [Barley Finish] flooring as the background for your mood board? 

We chose this specific White Oak flooring because of its honesty. It has rich veins and you can clearly see and feel the knots in the wood. The color of the flooring is warm (natural white with a slightly golden hue) which provides a cozy feel to the mood board. Also, since it's Oak, you know that it is a solid, enduring surface. These are all qualities of material that reflect the Frama vision.

You can learn more about Hudson Company White Oak Center Cut, Barley Finish] here, and more about Frama here. 

Follow The Hudson Company on Instagram. Follow Frama on Instagram.

All photos courtesy of Frama CPH.

  Frama Studio in Copenhagen, Denmark. All photos courtesy of Frama CPH.

Frama Studio in Copenhagen, Denmark. All photos courtesy of Frama CPH.

We often work within the area of re-interpreting design archetypes. Therefore, the objects of our collection often signals a return to basics. Our vision is always to come up with something new, but we try to maintain a historical feel to everything we do. The synergy between the past and present is important for our design process.
  Frama's home offices and showroom at St. Paul's Apotek in Copenhagen.

Frama's home offices and showroom at St. Paul's Apotek in Copenhagen.

  Hudson Company Select Harvest White Oak [Barley Finish].

Hudson Company Select Harvest White Oak [Barley Finish].

We chose this specific White Oak flooring because of its honesty. It has rich veins and you can clearly see and feel the knots in the wood. The color of the flooring is warm, and since it’s Oak, you know that it is a solid, enduring surface. These are all qualities of material that reflect the Frama vision.
  Custom mood board by Frama Copenhagen. Wood background is Hudson Company Select Harvest White Oak [Barley Finish].

Custom mood board by Frama Copenhagen. Wood background is Hudson Company Select Harvest White Oak [Barley Finish].

Join us for FIELD + SUPPLY This Weekend

The Hudson Company + Field & Supply

The Hudson Company is proud to be a partner of the Field + Supply Modern Makers Craft Fair.

Field + Supply began in 2014, as a modern interpretation of a traditional arts and crafts fair.  It consists of a carefully curated selection of makers highlighting goods, old and new, from a variety of studios and workshops representing a wide range of crafts. 

This multi-day experience has grown to include delicious food and drinks from the area, along with hands-on activities as well as live music.  

This year, we've moved just around the bend to the newly refurbished Hashbrouck House in Stone Ridge, NY where we'll be able to accommodate even more makers and additional workshops. In addition, there are opportunities to enjoy cocktail parties, private dinners, a biscuit breakfast from the Hotel's new restaurant Butterfield's and a rousing celebration Saturday night to meet the makers! 

We hope you can join us over Columbus Day weekend, October 7th, 8th, and 9th at Hasbrouck House for a truly incredible gathering. Look forward to seeing you there!

*Note: All F+S guests should park at The Stone Ridge Orchard,  right around the corner from Hasbrouck House at 3012 NY-213, Stone Ridge, NY 12484. Shuttle service will be available to and from Hasbrouck House from the Orchard. There will be NO PARKING available at Hasbrouck House.

See a full list of Field + Supply exhibitors here and buy your single day or weekend tickets here.

The Hudson Company + Ashley Seil Smith

  New York based artist Ashley Seil Smith

New York based artist Ashley Seil Smith

I like the warmth and texture inherent in the Reclaimed Heart Pine flooring, there’s a lot of character and line variation within the grain, which I think complements the line work in my drawings.
— Ashley Seil Smith
  The artist at work.

The artist at work.

The Hudson Company + Ashley Seil Smith

Ashley Seil Smith is an artist based in Manhattan, New York with a studio in the lower Hudson Valley.  She has a background in cultural anthropology but earned an MFA in Illustration as Visual Essay from the School of Visual Arts.  In 2012 she cofounded The Period Store and eventually sold it in 2015 to focus on editorial illustration, fine art, and teaching. Ashley's commercial clients include Google, Case Agency, Forbes, Oyster Books, Isthmus, and various academic journals and nonprofits. The artist lives, and often works, in Manhattan, but escapes to the Hudson River and her studio near Bear Mountain whenever she can. In addition to freelance, commissioned, and fine art work, Ashley teaches art to a variety of ages around Manhattan with Scribble Art Workshop.

The Hudson Company first discovered Ashley's work via her inspiring Instagram feed which is, like her work, full of whimsical observations of both the natural and built environments. It would be easy to peruse Ashley's work - particularly her pen and ink drawings and ethnographic prints - and see it as simplistic. But we think that it is precisely this deceptive simplicity that is so intriguing about Ashley's work. In our opinion, there is a timeless, reflective beauty in her (often small scale) drawings as well as an exotic mystique to her prints and graphic design work.

This summer we reached out to Ashley and asked her to allow us into her creative process. Along with the insights below, Ashley was also kind enough to create a custom mood board for us, using Reclaimed Heart Pine [Original Face] as her backdrop. 

5 Questions with Artist Ashley Seil Smith

Tell us about the tools that you've included in your mood board, what's their origin story? 

I enjoy collecting older tools that can actually be used in my art practice.  Some of them were picked up at antique stores across the United States (particularly along the Hudson River Valley, where my studio is), others I inherited from my grandma, who dabbled in art and was a wildly creative person.  A lot of older tools were designed beautifully, simply, and with quality material, so using them is an esthetic and practical as well.  My rulers are my favorite tools - natural material with interesting designs and stories to tell.

How do you use mood boards in your work? What role do they play in your creative process?

Mood boards keep things concise - I believe "good" mood boards have some parameters - a limit on how much you can add, so it forces you to think through what really inspires you and why.  So much of creativity is about making decisions, and a mood board helps you identify specific things you like or aim for in your own work.

I always keep a small collection of images on a folder in my desktop, and these act as a general mood board for my work, which spans across many mediums.  They are images that I truly love and that inspire me in some way, whether it's the color palette, technique, concept, or the way the image makes me feel.  I go through my little desktop mood board about once a month and always end up editing something out and adding other things that I like better.

There are so many places to go for inspiration these days, where do you go to get inspired?

I like going to places that set my aesthetic standard pretty high, and since I live in Manhattan, I have the opportunity to visit museums fairly often - the Met, MoMA, or Museum of Natural History are some favorites.  If an art exhibit inspires me I always buy the exhibit catalogue, so I have a nice collection of art books started and I refer to them when I'm in a rut.

Other than museums, I also turn to creative sources I trust, like The Great Discontent, and I see a lot of wonderful work on Instagram and Pinterest.  Pinterest, in particular, is great when I'm doing initial research for a project.  And, like many artists, I find a great deal of inspiration in nature. If I'm not working, I'm likely walking outside with my dogs or out for a trail run or hike around Inwood Hill Park.

What can you tell us about the drawing you included in your mood board: was that an original for this mood board or something you created separately? 

This particular ink drawing was done at the beginning of the year and was inspired by Yosemite National Park. I find myself drawing a lot of scenes from places I love or that inspire me. As you can tell, I enjoy the simplicity of pen and ink as well, it's a simple medium that's good for travel, so a lot of my ink drawings are done on location.

Why did you chose this particular Hudson Company flooring as the background for mood board?

I like the warmth and texture inherent in the Reclaimed Heart Pine flooring, there's a lot of character and line variation within the grain, which I think complements the line work in my drawings. I'm a big fan of Hudson Company flooring - you manage to cover all parts of the spectrum, from rustic to modern to classic and beyond.  Natural textures paired with modern design inspire me, which is one of the reasons I started following Hudson Company on various social medium platforms. 

You can learn more about Ashley's work on her website and you can follow her creative journey on Instagram. All above photos are taken from Ashley's website or Instagram feed. All mood board photos by Gentl and Hyers

Learn more about Reclaimed Heart Pine [Original Face] here. 

  Mood board by Ashley Seil Smith for The Hudson Company

Mood board by Ashley Seil Smith for The Hudson Company

The Hudson Company + Amee Allsop

  Custom mood board by architect  Amee Allsop , created for The Hudson Company. Photo set by  Gentl and Hyers.

Custom mood board by architect Amee Allsop, created for The Hudson Company. Photo set by Gentl and Hyers.

Growing up in Australia gave me a love for the sea and the indoor/outdoor lifestyle; since it is such a young country it is not bound by many archetypes. It was there that I learned to find beauty primarily in functional forms, rather than in decoration.
— AMEE ALLSOP

The Hudson Company + architect Amee Allsop

This year, The Hudson Company has been closely following the inspiring work of New York based, Australian-bred architect Amee Allsop.

As you can see from the photos above, Amee has a distinct approach to architecture which she describes as 'an amalgamation of the city and the sea' - a theme she has developed as her career has taken her from the South Pacific coastline to New York City. With design experience in these two juxtaposed contexts, Amee is continually inspired by the contrast of wide open landscape and dense verticality.

With each architectural endeavor, Amee's design process considers space, proportion, light and materiality whilst working closely with the client and building site. For Amee, quality materials and craftsmanship are both of central importance so that her designed spaces do not feel 'disposable' but, rather, timeless and inspiring. In the spirit of Australian living, Amee's work elevate the simple and beautiful essentials of living - such as a bathtub in an open bedroom - and embodies a minimal lifestyle, rich in tactual details.

This summer we asked Amee to create a custom mood board for us and then share some insights into her creative process as well. Here are our 5 Questions with Amee Allsop...

5 QUESTIONS WITH ARCHITECT AMEE ALLSOP

Tell us about the items included in your mood board, what's their origin story? And, is there one item that's a favorite?

The origin of these materials is, for the most part, a mystery to me. And I think that is really what makes them so beautiful to me. Mostly, they are found objects: a lump of concrete right off the street, a sample of metal work from a SOHO workshop, some shelled walnuts from the corner store, a few elegant bits from the art supply shop, and then there's this gorgeous handmade copper spoon (which I've always been so curious about). 

But my favorite object has to be the photo of my son’s squishy bum. The photo was taken when he was newborn and it sits on my desk and reminds me that everything I do is not for me, it’s for the future.

How do you use mood boards in your professional work? 

Honestly, I don’t always use mood boards when I'm designing because materiality tends to evolve over the course of a project. But there is always a need for a starting point, and so, in putting together a mood board for The Hudson Company, it all started with the wood flooring sample. 

In my work, I tend to use contrasting materials in a way that makes them feel like they belong together: raw steel with smooth marble, copper and linen, walnut and oak. I feel like it's a way to use tension to create harmony. For this mood board concept, I was drawn to the character of this Select Harvest White Oak [Capella Finish] and how it was perfectly imperfect.

There are so many places to go for inspiration these days: books, blogs, Tumblr, Pinterest, etc. What sources do you typically or consistently turn to? 

That's true, these days, there are almost too many places to go for inspiration. So, the challenge becomes about reduction. When it comes to things that inspire me on a regular basis, I’m often surprised and challenged by tailored clothes and personal style, by the arts and also by traveling.

I recently travelled to Scandinavia and was inspired by the street lamps, signage, and grate drains in the streets there - they stood out to me because they were so different to what we have here in NYC. It those little things that you don’t see photos of on the internet everyday that tend to catch my eye and challenge me to think in a new way.

When it comes to design, how do you feel your Australian background has influenced you? 

Growing up in Australia gave me a love for the sea and the indoor/outdoor lifestyle; since it is such a young country it is not bound by many archetypes. It was there that I learned to find beauty primarily in functional forms, rather than in decoration. And yet, this is really contrasted with the New York City aesthetic and its history of industrial ornamentation, which is also so inspiring. I suppose I’m still on an ever-evolving journey of finding the harmony between 'The City and The Sea.'

Why did you chose this particular Hudson Company flooring as the background for mood board?

When I visited The Hudson Company Showroom in Brooklyn, this particular flooring was just begging to be touched. When I first noticed it, I didn't know anything about the Select Harvest White Oak [Capella Finish] but it looked to me like it was from some really old tree that had had a good, long life and now was given a new life as a carefully crafted and functional object.

You can learn more about Amee work on her website and you can follow her creative journey on InstagramAll Amee Allsop Studio photos provided by Amee herself. All mood board photos by Gentl and Hyers

Learn more about Select Harvest White Oak [Capella Finish] here. 

The Hudson Company + Amanda Jane Jones

 Define Magazine,  founded by designer Amanda Jane Jones

Define Magazine, founded by designer Amanda Jane Jones

Define came out of what felt like a need. There were so many artists that I collaborate with who talked about wanting more opportunities to create work just for the sake of creating.
— Amanda Jane Jones
  The designer at home.

The designer at home.

  A peak inside  Define Magazine.

A peak inside Define Magazine.

The Hudson Company + Amanda Jane Jones

Amanda Jane Jones is a award-winning, freelance graphic designer and art director based in Chicago, IL but currently living with her family in Geneva, Switzerland. During her career, Amanda has collaborated with a variety of creative brands, including VSCO, Solly Baby, Kinfolk Magazine (as co-founder), and Artifact Uprising. Amanda's current passion project is the elegant new creative quarterly, Define Magazine.

When we asked Amanda to create a custom mood board for our ongoing series of creative collaborations, we knew it would be be a gorgeous, minimalist's meditation on color and simplicity. In this, we certainly weren't disappointed. But it's the story behind the items that Amanda chose to feature in her mood board that are especially fascinating: photos of her children, Pantone color swatches, and skipping stones from the shores of Lake Michigan.

Here is the story behind Amanda's lovely mood board for The Hudson Company...

5 Questions with Amanda Jane Jones

Tell us about the items included in your mood board, what's their origin story? Why did you select them for this mood board?

I'm always looking for calming influences in my life and strive for my home to be minimal, quiet, simple and calming. And since we live just a quick walk away from Lake Michigan (where I vacationed as a child with my family) I often take my children there throughout the year. The colors of the lake have always inspired me. Every time I visit the lake, I come home with at least one rock that we keep in jars on our bookshelves. The homes along Lake Michigan - especially in the Glen Arbor area - have always inspired me as well, with their white-washed wood exteriors. The Lake brings back peaceful, happy, calm memories. If the kids (or I) are ever grumpy or in a slump of some sort, the Lake is the first place we visit - the wind coming off of Lake Michigan seems to cure all. 

How do you use mood boards in your professional work? What role do they play in your creative process?

I utilize a lot of mood boards in my work. It's a huge part of my design process. I start with brainstorming, looking through my collection of books to get ideas. I also have an inspiration wall at home that I love to cover with ephemera I've collected from my travels or received from friends.

Tell us about your inspiration for Define Magazine: where did the concept come from and what inspired you to create this publication?

Define came out of what felt like a need. There were so many artists that I collaborate with who talked about wanting more opportunities to create work just for the sake of creating. It's hard to make time for personal work amid the day to day of creating for clients - so it was born out of an idea to create a space for artists to feel free to create for the sake of creating.

From my own experience, I know that artists hunger to work on projects uninhibited by the client filter and we jump at a chance to collaborate with other artists on a global scale—to make something beautiful and thought-provoking. The basis of Define is simple: each issue focuses on a single word defined by a unique set of artists through various mediums. 

So far it's been exciting to see artists explore the same theme through different perspectives. We hope it's a magazine that resonates with both artists and art lovers, so that we are able to accumulate a collection of definitions that create a beautiful anthology to be enjoyed and re-defined for years to come

Are there specific places that you turn when you need fresh ideas or inspiration? Particular books, other creative people, blogs, etc.?

When I'm in a design slump, I always go for a walk. Fresh air is always a quick fix. Also, books - both old and new. I don't think you can ever have too many books. Oh, and I love Maira Kalman - she's an endless inspiration to me.

Why did you chose this particular Hudson Company flooring as the background for mood board?

With Select Harvest Ash [Neva Finish], I love how white it is - the color is just perfect. Again, there's something calming about this kind of floor and so I'm naturally drawn to the tone and fell of Neva. At home, we recently painted our kitchen floor white and I love how it's brightened our space.

You can learn more about Amanda Jane's work on her website and you will certainly want to follow her on Instagram as well. Here you can learn more about Define Magazine. All mood board photos by Gentl and Hyers

Learn more about Select Harvest [Neva Finish] here

  Custom mood board by designer Amanda Jane Jones for The Hudson Company, featuring  Select Harvest Ash [Neva Finish] flooring.

Custom mood board by designer Amanda Jane Jones for The Hudson Company, featuring Select Harvest Ash [Neva Finish] flooring.

The Hudson Company + Tereasa Surratt

  Stylist and creative director Tereasa Surratt

Stylist and creative director Tereasa Surratt

Like the objects I selected to lay over the planks, this flooring had humble beginnings. But over time, it’s developed this kind of mysterious, timeless patina. This wood is a remnant from another time, and, yet, in it’s own way, it’s more intriguing than ever.
— Tereasa Surratt
  Tereasa Surratt and David Hernandez at Camp Wandawega.

Tereasa Surratt and David Hernandez at Camp Wandawega.

  Historic Camp Wandawega, in Walworth County, Wisconsin.

Historic Camp Wandawega, in Walworth County, Wisconsin.

  A peak inside Camp Wandawega's reclaimed wood treehouse.

A peak inside Camp Wandawega's reclaimed wood treehouse.

An Indecisive Hybrid

Tereasa Surratt is a woman who wears many hats. Self-described as, 'an indecisive hybrid: part creative director, part designer, part stylist, part author, part brand builder.' Surratt admits to living with a daily struggle, 'an obsession to make everything around her more interesting, beautiful, and desirable.' This energetic obsession has proved a fruitful tool for Tereasa, who has developed partnerships and award-winning creative campaigns for a variety of brands over the years, including Warby Parker, Penfield Manufacturing Co., FLOR, Land of Nod, GANT, and Anthropologie.

But the creative endeavor closest to Tereasa's heart is her work to save, renovate, and revitalize Camp Wandawega, the historic summer retreat in Walworth County, Wisconsin that Surratt operates together with her husband David Hernandez. Impeccably restored, endlessly Instagram-able, and ever evolving, through David and Tereasa's love and care, Camp Wandawega has become an essential destination for all manner of creative types passing through the Chicagoland area.

This year, we reached out to Tereasa and asked her to create a custom mood board featuring items that inspire her. Then we asked her to combine those items with the Hudson Company wood of her choice. Here's the story behind Tereasa's mood board.

5 Questions With Teresa Surratt

Tell us about the items included in your mood board, what's their origin story? Why did you select them for this mood board?

This is a collection of artifacts sourced from either our collection at Camp Wandawega, or things I discovered at area barn or estate sales. They are generally what I call 'history scraps,' items that were never intended to last forever. They're common kinds of things - postcards, handwritten notes, branded ash trays, mattress tags, a length of leather - these are objects that each served modest tasks. I'm more than a little obsessed with these kinds of little things, with their humble, utilitarian beauty and the way that they've survived the decades.

Are there any particular favorites that stand out or are especially endeared to you?

It's the little things that always get to me; like the color of the vintage, chewed up pencil in this mood board. This particular shade of ochre was really popular in the 1940s and could be found on everything from tractors to coffee cans. We are building a house at camp and are seriously considering creating a line of modern chairs in this vintage color. When juxtaposed with the new building's concrete floors and minimalist white interiors, the use of this color could be a subtle nod to a much different time in America's design history.

How do you use mood boards in your professional work? What role do they play in your creative process?

Whenever I'm working on a new project, I collect things subconsciously over the course of a few weeks. Eventually, my little inspirational piles evolve into something important, something that reveals meaningful textures, colors, and themes. I find that when I use this creative method, the result is always more authentic and more honest.

Where do you turn when you need fresh ideas or inspiration? 

Of course, there are a lot of gorgeous blogs out there that are full of inspiring content. But more often than not, I find myself drawn to real life, specifically to people's homes. There's something about the objects and art and materials in a living, working house that is just irresistible for me. Whether that's Thomas Edison's Winter Estate down in Fort Myers or the rugged, preserved homesteads at 'Old World Wisconsin' - I have always been drawn to the forms and functions of domestic life. Also, old 1960s issues of Architectural Digest, Better Homes & Gardens and vintage, out of print books are a great source for ideas and creative presidents.

Why did you choose Reclaimed Threshing Floor as the background for your mood board?

Everything we do at Camp is connected with history. Now that we're listed on the National Register of Historic Places, that's more true than ever before. So, to try and connect Camp artifacts with some glossy, mass produced floors just wouldn't work. With Reclaimed Threshing Floor, there is so much history right there in the wood grain. The fact that this flooring was (once upon a time) used by some farmer, somewhere, to separate his wheat and chaff - that's so rich.

Who could have imagined that when these floors were first crafted a hundred years ago, that they would live another life in a 21st-century home or museum? They have such an enduring quality. Like the objects I selected to lay over the planks, this flooring had humble beginnings. But over time, it's developed this kind of mysterious, timeless patina. This wood is a remnant from another time, and, yet, in it's own way, it's more intriguing than ever.

Special thanks to Tereasa Surratt and David Hernandez. You can learn more about Tereasa at her site. And you can learn more about Hudson Company Reclaimed Mixed Softwoods [Threshing Floor] here.

Inspired By: Sustainable Development at 60 White Street, New York

Watch Giglio on White, a short film documenting the redevelopment of 60 White Street in New York.  

With this project, we are preserving history and the environment. We’re setting an example of the power that we all hold in deciding how to live.
— Veronica Mainetti
  The historic floor joists inside 60 White Street.

The historic floor joists inside 60 White Street.

An Ambitious resurrection in Tribeca

Developer Veronica Mainetti of Sorgente Group of America has big dreams for the property her team is reclaiming at 60 White Street in TriBeCa.

"After unveiling these gorgeous buildings from all of the years of use and abuse," Mainetti says, "I find myself breathing with it for the first time. All of the rooms are emptied, revealing the incredible structure that it houses. This is the point of rebirth. This is where the bond really begins between the building and me. It is as if the energy is finally awakening for the first time in decades and one can truly feel the soul of these beauties."

As a fifth-generation member of the Mainetti family, Veronica Mainetti was named President of the Sorgente Group of America in 2004 and, under her stewardship, Sorgente continues to expand its US portfolio with key acquisitions in California and New York, where most of their landmark properties are located, including the iconic Flatiron Building.

With 60 White Street, Mainetti's passion is deeply personal, "The unique opportunity to preserve a piece of history is extremely rewarding and humbling for me, it is what I love most about my job. Bringing back these facades to their original state from 1869 will be an absolute honor."

Sustainable Materials, sustainable Rebirth

At 147-years-old, the cast-iron building at 60 White Street is looking better than ever thanks to a painstaking three-year, sustainable restoration. The eight-unit condo conversion reused a whopping 80% of materials salvaged from the original structure and is kitted out with the latest passive house technologies (including a brand new class of window developed specifically by Zola for the project), as well as a blue roof rainwater collection system, an air-purifying green wall in the lobby, and radiant heat throughout the residences for comfort and energy-efficiency.

“Everything from day one has been about having this building perform in a smarter way,” explains Mainetti in the trailer for a documentary she produced to chronicle 60 White’s restoration. “Passive house windows set a new energy standard with modern technology. What doesn’t come from the existing structure is locally sourced.”

In addition to its impressive material reuse rate, the building was designed with a highly insulated envelope to keep energy usage to a minimum. European window company Zola developed a new class of 3-paned, passive house-certified windows for the project that keep drafts and noise out while staying true to the structure’s 1869 facade. The sumptuous marble that lines the bathrooms, kitchens and common areas was sourced locally at Vermont Danby Marble. 

For the 60 White Street project, The Hudson Company has provided 18,000 square feet of high quality, high character Reclaimed Oak [Engineered, New Face]. Before being incorporated in the the 60 White Street project, this reclaimed wood material was redirected out of the waste stream and then custom milled at our FSC-certified mill in Pine Plains, New York. The rugged, natural textures of this Reclaimed Oak provide a rich complement to 60 White Street's salvaged brick walls, creating a warm and distinctive interior materials palette.

“The challenge is the convince others what a sustainable future really is,” says Mainetti. “With this project, we are preserving history and the environment. We’re setting an example of the power that we all hold in deciding how to live.”

Learn more about Hudson Company Reclaimed Flooring here and explore more about the 60 White Street development here.

  Detail exterior shot at historic 60 White Street. 

Detail exterior shot at historic 60 White Street. 

  Developer Veronica Mainetti of Sorgente Group of America at The Hudson Company Mill.

Developer Veronica Mainetti of Sorgente Group of America at The Hudson Company Mill.

  Detail from the historic facade at 60 White Street.

Detail from the historic facade at 60 White Street.

*Some of the above editorial content has been sourced and repurposed from www.60white.com. All photos are still images taken from the film Giglio on White, copyright Sorgente Group of America and Two Penguins.