Pedro Ruiz’s Catleya Dowiana available from Beatriz Esguerra Art

Perhaps not dinner, but in many ways art feeds the soul. From the earliest to the latest, art transforms thoughts and ideas into physical form.  But it can be expensive.  For those not bothered by budgets, this coming weekend is the Dallas Art Fair that runs Thursday until Sunday downtown at f.i.g (Fashion Industry Gallery). Tickets are still available starting at $25 for a day pass ($20 if you’re too old or too young to pay $25) and topping out at $500 for a Patron pass.

If you’re like me, art events with a section titled “Works Under $10,000” and more “Contact Gallery for Price” than actual prices, it’s a window shopping outing. For example, Pedro Ruiz’s work (above) with large floral images punctuated by lone tribal figures on rafts are bold in color and subject (the appropriation of goods from native areas for the enrichment of the voracious and fickle West). Beautiful and moving, but too rich for me.

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There is nothing I like better than a bargain, unless it’s a design bargain. Or a real estate bargain.

Thus I hit jackpot Monday when I walked into Jan Showers Interior Design showroom at 1308 Slocum Street, in the Dallas Design District, and found out about her fabulous February sale. Amazing fabric rolls selling for… are you sitting down? I want proof, tell me you are sitting down.

Okay, you are sitting down.

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Megg Braff Book|candysdirt.com

A Braff New York bedroom. Photo credit: J. Savage Gibson

Looking for gift ideas for anyone with an eye for beautiful interiors? Check out the first book by notable interior designer Meg Braff, a Mississippi-born, Long Island-based designer who’s known for chic timeless style. Braff visited Dallas recently, presenting a program for the Dallas Woman’s Club on her modern take on traditional design fusing bold colors, rich patterns, and incorporating antique pieces with up-to-the minute furnishings. The hallmark of the the mother of four young boys is home design that is pretty and polished but welcoming and livable.

Charlotte Moss wrote the forward to Braff’s book – that says it all. We caught up with Braff at a book-signing at a private home following her appearance at the Dallas Woman’s Club for a Q&A:

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Those purveyors of the best contemporary furnishings in town, Scott & Cooner, have a great present for all of us: a holiday SALE just in time to outfit the house for the holidays. It’s at the warehouse location, 2150 Irving Blvd. 10 am to 4 pm until Friday. We told you all about it last week but here is  reminder.

For a handy-dandy map, click here.

What you (and I) will find:

Rugs by Yerra: fabulous hides and stitched hides, by Moooi: bright pallettes and unusual creations, like this Delft round rug whose original art design was hand-painted on a ceramic plate, and by Nanimariquina, a Barcelona rug designer and manufacturer. I’m actually buying a rug now so you might catch me down there. Rugs are impossible, I think, to buy on the internet. 

Furnishings: a selection of Giorgetti sofas, Cassina chairs, tables and more, and a variety of Paola Lenti indoor/outdoor and outdoor furniture. I mean, with temperatures this temperate, go ahead and have Christmas dinner outside! (more…)

Stacy Brotemarkle remembers when she was a 12-year-old, tagging along with her parents while house hunting. For most kids, hours and hours of showings and trekking through home after home can be boring and tedious, but Brotemarkle remembers it all fondly. 

“I said, ‘Mom, I want to be an interior designer,’ ” Brotemarkle recalled. “She said, ‘Yeah, sure, and last week you wanted to be a singer.’ ”

But unlike her musical ambitions, interior design stuck with her through high school and onward. Right after graduating high school, Brotemarkle went to work for Hawkins-Welwood Homes, later graduating from the University of North Texas with a BFA in interior design. Today, Brotemarkle is the vice president and lead interior designer at Bella Custom Homes, one of the foremost luxury custom builders in North Texas. 

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Let’s start with a Maestro Color from Allied Stone, shall we?

Calacatta Riviera.

It’s an awesome color featuring naturalistic veining that looks like the real deal of marble. But it performs like a champ! No sealing is required EVER!!!

Today everyone wants the marble look, but no one wants the hassle and maintenance. Natural marble is soft, prone to etching and staining in it’s natural state. Maestro Quartz, available at Allied Stone in Dallas, is a beautiful alternative.

“We sell it by the square foot, you don’t have to buy whole slab quantities,” says Matthew Collins, brand and marketing manager. “It’s perfect for design flexibility and price.”

Allied Stone is a leader in fabrication and installation of natural stone. The company specializes in unique and customized granite kitchen countertops and bathroom vanities for new homes and remodels, crafting designs from only the highest quality natural stone such as granite, marble, onyx, and soapstone.

Allied Stone is the only granite fabricator in DFW that actually owns and stocks as much inventory and range of selections as the local granite distributors. Allied’s selection of exotic stones is conducted completely in-house.

More than 45,000 pieces of beautiful, exceptional stone slabs are available in more than 500 colors.

Allied also has the largest number of CNC machines among local DFW fabricators, giving them the unique ability to assure high precision and a streamlined production produce. With four Texas locations and a store in Durant, Ok, only Allied can offer a stunning inventory of natural stone, serving its customers with elegance and efficiency.

Allied Stone has partnered with CandysDirt to bring you a beautiful Stone of the Week. For questions you may have about putting glorious stone in your home, 855-861-6388 or email here. 

This new custom home by Avida Homes featured un-lacquered faucets and hardware for an authentic look, which makes it feel more luxurious. (Photo: Lisa Stewart Photography)

What’s in a name? Everything, especially if you are talking about home design. Our Dallas housing market is robust right now, and it made us think about the words and names that builders and Realtors use to describe their homes. One of the most overused terms is “luxury,” and it’s used to describe everything from a large bath in a $100,000 home to the lifestyle that’s offered in a $10 million home.

When we heard that ROHL was coming to Dallas with their Auth Lux Summit, we were anxious to hear what they had to say.

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Kneif & Company’s K-Stone Pride Bathtub. Soup’s on!

Even before Lady Gaga popped out of an egg at the 2011 Grammy’s, I was over the plethora of egg-shaped bathtubs.  I realize that bathtub shapes are limited by what is placed in them … namely people. But men, always enjoying a little manspreading (it floats, you know), would rather not have a bathtub that narrows at the legs.  So speaking for all men, the recent fad of egg shapes has tired us out.  It’s time to crack some eggs and see what else is out there.

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