DMTV Milkshake: Sarit Shani Hay on Designing for Children + Social Change

This week’s DMTV Milkshake guest is designer and author Sarit Shani Hay, founder and creator of Sarit Shani Hay Studio in Tel Aviv.

“When I started to design for children, it was not so common,” says Hay. “People asked me why we needed to design for children – children ruin everything. Luckily people now realize it’s very important to design for children – and [to consider] how we create a narrative and above all, how we use design as a tool for social change and make a better life for children.”

That’s the philosophical bedrock of Hay’s diverse body of work, which ranges from creating handmade toys and inclusive classrooms to designing play spaces for children at hotels and therapeutic environments at hospitals. For the latter, Hay works to infuse these spaces with a transformative sense of play – the effects of which she was able to witness herself. … Read the rest

Wescover: An Online Marketplace That Connects You With Designers + Makers

Wescover is one of those things you didn’t know you needed until you know all about it. It’s an online platform that connects you directly with artists and designers allowing you to see a range of their work while learning more about them and the stories behind their designs. Wescover hosts all kinds of creators, from those just starting out to the established studios with expansive collections. The site lets you easily search for the types of items you’re looking for, a specific creator, or for something you’ve come across in a certain space, like a restaurant, hotel, or art gallery, that you’re interested in. You can order work the creators currently make or enlist them to design a custom piece that’s specific to your needs. By working directly with the creators, you’re supporting self-employed, independent artists and designers, while acquiring the perfect light fixture, piece of art, or chair … Read the rest

2020 Gift Guide: Tech

We are grateful to Casely + Sum Products for supporting this gift guide. Our partners are hand picked by the Design Milk team because they represent the best in design.

If there’s any category synonymous with the holiday season, it’s tech gifts, with the end of the year offers an opportune time to upgrade from outdated and tired to version 2.0 wired. Big or small, affordable or a splurge, we’ve gathered a selection of tech devices and accessories below celebrating great design topped with a fashionable finish designed to blend into your home and lifestyle.

Bang & Olufsen Beosound Balance Speaker $2,250
Benjamin Hubert of British design agency Layer worked in collaboration with the Danish audio brand to design a sculptural, wireless audio speaker “inspired by interior objects”. Equalizing high design and even higher performance, an omni-directional array of speakers sits atop a beautifully crafted wood base housing an up-firing … Read the rest

Friday Five With Mark Gardner of Jaklitsch/Gardner Architects

Mark Gardner

As Principal at New York City-based Jaklitsch/Gardner Architects, Mark Gardner has led many of the firm’s design initiatives and works to understand the role of design as social practice. Gardner takes a serious interest in the crossroads of architecture and art, both subjects of the utmost importance to his professional practice as well as to his teaching and writings. Mark is committed to practicing architecture as a socially beneficial art form. He’s engaged in all aspects of each of the studio’s projects, and leads the firm’s quality-control review process, having taught Professional Practice at the University of Pennsylvania. Mark is currently the Director of the Master of Architecture program at Parsons. Today Mark joins us for Friday Five!

1. W.E.B. Du Bois Mapping Diagrams
In 1897, the United States Supreme Court ruled in Plessy v. Ferguson that separate was equal. W.E.B. Du Bois, the … Read the rest

2020 Gift Guide – Health & Wellness

If there was ever a year to remember to put your health and wellness first, 2020 is definitely the year. There was a lot to process as we tried to navigate the “new normal,” and it seemed like our limited energy was going in every direction, the least of which was ourselves and our own well-being. If you can relate, we’re betting someone you know can too. We hope with this gift guide, you’ll find something that will help your giftee feel rejuvenated, revitalized and refreshed for the new year. (And yes, you can definitely be your own giftee. #treatyourself)

Mini Handy Pillow by OSTRICHPILLOW $35
Naps are an essential part of self-care, whether it’s just five minutes to close our eyes or a two-hour sleep to recharge. If you only have a few minutes to catch some Zzzs, this handy pillow makes it a more pleasurable experience by having … Read the rest

The 5 Best Cat-Proof Couches for Cat Owners, Paws Down

If you’re looking for a new pet-friendly couch and hoping it won’t turn into your furry friend’s next cat scratching post, we’ve got you covered. While it is unlikely that you’ll find n entirely cat-proof sofa, there are some that are better at resisting pet hair and claw marks. 

The key here is finding a high-quality sofa brand that specializes in durability, so even if your sofa ends falls victim to cat scratch fever, it holds up over time.

In this post, we’ll review the ways that cats can damage your couch and the materials that are best at protecting against these issues. We’ll also share some examples of cat-friendly couches, and some bonus tips to help you protect and maintain your furniture so you and your furry friend can enjoy it together for a long time to come.

If you’re not a cat lover but have a dog, you … Read the rest

The Gaming Aesthetic Comes To Life Within the Alienware Training Facility

It isn’t quite as secure nor secretive as Area 51, but PC gaming brand Alienware’s state-of-the-art Alienware Training Facilities in Utrecht, Netherlands for eSport organization Team Liquid, represents the ascension and prominence of gaming as a global presence. Housed within a bespoke 10,000-square-foot “gaming house” in a newly constructed mixed-use development, the collaboration between the exterior of VenhoevenCS Architecture + Urbanism and interior design of AHH Architects showcases architecture inspired by gaming.

Described as a “mix of serene minimalism and high-tech, edgy gaming aesthetics,” the convergence of architecture and interior design across the facilities unashamedly celebrate technology. Interior details echo several of the surface treatments of the Alienware aesthetic, most notably drawing from the monochromatic Alienware Legend design language, an industrial design solution that earned the collection a 2020 iF World Design Award in the product category.

Photo: Teo Krijgsman for AHH Architecture

Photo: Teo Krijgsman for AHH Architecture


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5 Best Sofas for Back Support That Can Help with Back Pain

Not all sofas are good at providing lumbar support, but there are plenty that can really help with your back pain. Back support isn’t the sexiest marketing term, so you won’t see too many brands focus directly on that.

We’re here to remove that uncertainty and provide you with some great recommendations for sofas that can help your aching back and make you comfortable in your living room again. We’ll also point out some things to look for during your shopping journey.

High-quality seat cushions can help those with a bad back to decompress their spine, for example. But first, let’s get to the best back support sofas and we’ll circle back to tricks and tips toward the end of the article.

5 Couches That Provide Excellent Back Support 

We’ve combed through tons of sofas and chose the five that we thought were best at providing proper back support. We’ve … Read the rest

12 Things I Learned From Kelly Wearstler’s Interior Design MasterClass

I’ve been staying in my childhood home since the beginning of the pandemic – and while my parents applied a low-key Early Americana-ish vibe to most of the house (with tables and benches from my grandparents’ Pennsylvania farm, primitive blanket chests, Gaudy Welsh ceramics, etc.), my sister’s and my rooms remained IKEA- and garage sale-filled white boxes. (My mom: “We didn’t think you were coming back.”)

As we prepare to hunker down for the seasons ahead, I’ve struggled with how to revamp this quasi-temporary space – which means I was extremely excited to see Kelly Wearstler’s MasterClass on interior design. Pros: Watching Kelly Wearstler apply paint samples to a white wall in the Proper Hotel in Downtown L.A. is like ASMR for the home design set. I also definitely need a cling-clangy bracelet of metal samples (ideally including various rare and precious metals.) Con: After 150 minutes of instruction, I’m … Read the rest

DMTV Milkshake: Germane Barnes on Cultivating Hope When It’s Hard To Do

This week’s DMTV Milkshake guest is architect and educator Germane Barnes, principal of Studio Barnes LLC.

“‘Hope’ is a tough word,” says Barnes, when asked what he hopes 2021 will bring to the design world. An assistant professor at the University of Miami School of Architecture, the Chicago-born architect has a big year on tap: In February, his work will appear in MoMA’s first-ever all-Black exhibition, Reconstructions: Architecture and Blackness in America. Still, he’s trepidatious, and concerned that 2020’s gestures to greater inclusivity will reveal themselves as a passing trend, rather than a sea change. “You can feel let down when you hope for things. But if we don’t hope for things, I don’t know how we’re supposed to continue to do the work. My hope is that 2020 isn’t just a blip on the radar.”

Also in this episode of Milkshake, Barnes shares what he learned while interning in … Read the rest