Tie It with a Bow

Spring brings travel, special events and celebrations like spring break, Mother’s Day, bridal showers, and graduations to name a few. Being ever the thoughtful Southerner, you know not to show up empty-handed!

This past week at Americas Mart, Steve showed a group of dedicated retail buyers several new ways to put together “The Ultimate Hostess Gift”, including a Holiday Jingle cocktail!

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Holiday Jingle Crush Cocktail

As a bonus, our fellow Butler University classmate and Delta Gamma sorority sister, Jill Miner, joined us.  Be sure to check out her award-winning bookstore in picturesque Gaylord, Michigan, Saturn Booksellers.

Back to the hostess gift!  Let’s deconstruct it and learn some tips.

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Ingredients for a food lovers gift

Steve says to think about your host.  Do they have any hobbies?  This gracious host has discovered cooking and frequently entertains friends and family.

Next, let’s find an unusual container instead of the standard gift bag.  We love this vivid blue melamine (unbreakable!) salad bowl.  Then we filled it with delicious pesto, gourmet salt and a pizza kit from Atlanta-based Bella Cucina.  Tuck in a matching blue tea towel for some extra love.  Now, let’s look at it all put together.

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Food Lovers Basket

Twirl some cellophane around it and tie it with a bow.  Now you’re ready to say Thank You and enjoy your time together.  Shop the look here.

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Tie it with a bow!

We’re going to share these ideas throughout the spring, so stay tuned for more wonderful ideas to wow your host.  Of course, if you’re pressed for time, our team at steve mckenzie’s is ready to prepare your hostess gifts for you.

Missed this seminar?  Keep track of our whereabouts, classes and events by following our  Facebook page and Instagram.

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Another Memorable AmericasMart Experience!

This past weekend at AmericasMart was such a whirlwind for us! We were so honored to be selected to participate in their exciting “Retail Meets Design” vignette exhibition, which highlighted the talents of a fantastic group of retailers who are also designers, or vice versa. We were simply blown away by everyone’s creativity!

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Steve took this opportunity to add a little glam into his designs and we couldn’t have been more pleased with the outcome! In addition, just about everything was sourced from within AmericasMart, and the items he didn’t find there are all available through steve mckenzie’s.

The vignette Steve designed for McKenzie Design was centered around a banquette table and chair arrangement, with the focal point being that amazing hammered metal pedestal table from Bliss Studio.

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As you’ve probably deduced by now, tablescapes are a specialty of ours here at steve mckenzie’s and Steve’s tabletop design for his vignette certainly portrayed his appreciation for fine wares. Here’s a rundown of Steve’s sources for his tablescape:

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The bar cart, found via Golden Oldies Antiques, was actually an old Viennese pastry cart, which was repurposed, and it acted as the perfect end cap for the banquet – sourced through Lee Industries. The bottom of the bar cart featured a glass cabinet, which was filled with antique brass camel bells. The shield back chairs were found at Aidan Gray, and the nailhead trim on the chairs worked beautifully with the detailing on the banquette seating!

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The console table space was perhaps our favorite moment within the vignette. That table, also sourced through Bliss Studio, is a true work of art, and the bejeweled Buddha perched atop it is as well. After all, it was crafted by THE Eric Cortina. And the floral on the console is by Diane James.

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The lighting above the table and the sconces above the console are all from Currey & Co., each of those pieces added some needed modernity. The vertical artwork was sourced from Wendover Art Group and the horizontal piece is from Art & Frame Source.

You may recognize the wall covering, as it’s based off of Steve’s art and textile design, was transferred to grass cloth and transformed in to wallpaper. It is so exciting to see the loop art used in this way!

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The banquette pillows offered their own touch of glitz and glam and were found via D.V. Kap.

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And that etagere, which added the perfect amount of style and storage was found via Gabby, as were all of those stunning accessories used to style it.

The rug also deserves a mention all its own… The luxuriously soft and beautiful floor covering Jaipur Living, and it was a showstopper!

We also have to share a little shout out to all of the other amazing retailer/designers who designed some brilliant spaces for the “Retail Meets Design” vignettes:

– Kristin Alber of FOUND

– Nina Nash and Jared Hughes of Matthews Furniture + Design

– Susan Victor and John Ishmael of Natina Home & Design

– Rozanne Jackson of The Iron Gate

– Ann Huff, Meg Harrington and Sam Jones of Huff Harrington Home

– Paige Schnell, Beth Nash and Anna Kay Porch of Tracery Interiors

In addition to designing the exhibition vignette, Steve was also invited to speak on a panel about the retail and design business and how to bridge the gap between them, as well as promoting the dual businesses. Kristin Alber of FOUND, moderated the panel and was such a delight to get to know during AmericasMart!

While AmericasMart can be a crazy time, and this year was no exception, it’s always a phenomenal source of inspiration and  a wonderful time to meet and greet with all of our industry friends. And we’re so appreciative of all the praise the vignette exhibit has been garnering on social media – just check out #retailmeetsdesign to get an idea of all the excitement!

Here’s to AmericasMart 2017!!

Headlining!

Summer is shaping up to be a great season here at steve mckenzie’s! We’re especially excited to see so many recent mentions of steve mckenzie’s in many of our favorite magazines and blogs and we wanted to take a moment to share a quick shout out…

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Our friends at Restyle Source recently interviewed Steve for their blog as the first in their summer series of Designer Spotlights focusing on the group of top design experts who will be featured this July at AmericasMart’s Vignette Exhibition.

This is a wonderful series and they get into everything with these interviews – they’re so fun! Steve dishes about the inspiration behind his upcoming vignette, his must-see AmericasMart showrooms, and even shares a few personal tidbits.

Thank you to Restyle Source for including Steve in this exciting lineup, we’re thrilled to learn more about the other designers in the AmericasMart Vignette Exhibition!!

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Next up, you may have seen us share this cover shot, but we’re too elated about this amazing feature not to post about it on our blog as well… It’s our first ever interior design magazine cover – thanks to Atlanta Magazine’s HOME!!

The feature story offers stunning photography by Anthony Masterson and savvy writing by Lisa Kline Mowry. We’re so very honored to have this project showcased in this way, and are so appreciative to our clients for trusting us with their home.

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Not to be overshadowed, was a mention of Steve’s fabric, as a part of Garden & Gun magazine’s blog feature on “Six Southern Fabrics that Say Summer.” Here is an excerpt from the post:

“Steve’s ‘Gingham’ is a brushstroke version of the classic pattern gives it a modern twist.”—Kristen Gish

Thank you so much to the Supply Showroom team and to Garden & Gun for working to pull together this excellent blog post!

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Finally, a visit from a new friend of steve mckenzie’s and talent behind Thou Swell blog, resulted in a wonderful feature by Kevin O’Gara.

Kevin is a brilliant student and designer, who we’re honored to have the pleasure of collaborating with over this summer.

So that about wraps up our most recent media mentions… Another BIG thank you to all of our friends, clients and colleagues who’ve been so generous with their support of steve mckenzie’s!

Changing Lives – Dwell With Dignity’s latest Atlanta project!

Our team here at steve mckenzie’s was honored to have been able to be a part of Dwell With Dignity‘s latest Atlanta project, installed last month. We feel so lucky to play a small role in bettering one family’s life right before the holidays – there’s truly nothing better!

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A BIG thank you to Lisa, Kim and everyone we worked with on this fantastic DWD project!!

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Our crew with the wonderful receiving family after the big reveal.

As you may recall from past blog posts,  Dwell with Dignity, is an amazing organization which supports families struggling with homelessness and poverty one beautiful design at a time.

Here's the family first walking in to their new space - we think they're thrilled with their new home!
Here’s the family first walking in to their new space – we think they’re thrilled with their new home!

This time around, Steve worked with THE Egypt Sherrod, and together, they teamed up with Americas Mart, Dena Stormer for the DIY portion of the design, as well as Nancy Foster and other volunteers to bring this happy – and beautiful – home to a very deserving mother and her two children.

steve mckenzie's team member, Xavier neuner, working on some finishing touches.
steve mckenzie’s team member, Xavier neuner, working on some finishing touches.

Before, the three bedroom apartment was dull and uninspiring. After the design and installation it felt welcoming, bright and vibrant – a place where people can truly thrive! Here are some photos of the space before and after…

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Dining area before…
Dining area after - a perfect place for the family to gather, kids to do homework and for everyone to make some special memories!
Dining area after – a perfect place for the family to gather, kids to do homework and for everyone to make some special memories!
Master bedroom before...
Master bedroom before…
Master bedroom after - a beautiful retreat, with plenty of places to snuggle up with the kids or just relax.
Master bedroom after – a beautiful retreat, with plenty of places to snuggle up with the kids or just relax.
One of the kid's rooms before...
One of the kid’s rooms before…
And the kid's room after - an awesome space to inspire confidence and give this little one a spectacular place to call their own.
And the kid’s room after – an awesome space to inspire confidence and give this little one a spectacular place to call their own.

They always say you get what you give, but in this case what we got was tenfold. Seeing the joy on the faces of these family members and knowing we helped make a difference in their lives was the experience of a lifetime!

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After seeing her new home for the first time, the mother shared, “I am living a dream, more than a dream, I never ever dreamed I could have a home like this.” Wow. Design does powerful things.

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There are so many people who helped make the project possible, and we’re lucky to have worked with such a wonderful bunch!  Thank you to our fabulous photographer, Thomas England.  All photos are his work.

To learn more about Dwell With Dignity, and how they make a difference with design, as well as learn about ways you can help please visit DwellWithDignity.org.