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"Vin, S'il Vous Plaît."

Laguiole is a village of some 1,200 in South-Central France, known for its distinctive cheese and excellent knives.  The first Laguiole knife was crafted in 1829 and became popular with farmers and shepherds.  In fact, the decorative "pins" in the body of the knife are inserted in the form of a cross—and Catholic shepherds (tending their sheep, far from home or church) used to stick their knife blades upright, into the earth, to form a makeshift prayer altar. Alas, Laguiole was not disciplined about trademarking or protecting its esteemed name.  As a result, poor-quality knockoffs (usually from Asia) have flooded the market under the Laguiole name.  Rest assured, we only sell the best Laguiole products, made in Laguiole, France. The sommelier, shown...

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Skin of Armor

From a collection of American alligator wallets, now in-stock at LEO Design: a slim, bi-fold credit card wallet. Its svelte profile is perfectly tailored for streamlined dressing and its natural, hand-rubbed finish will develop a beautiful, soft sheen with continued use.  The alligators are farmed in Florida and Louisiana, and the wallets are hand-stitched in New England.  It's one of many wallet styles, now to be found in our on-line shop.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about this one.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design...

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Call Me Ishmael . . .

“Call me Ishmael,”  is perhaps the most famous opening line of any American Novel yet written.  On this day in 1851, The Whale, by Herman Melville, was published by Richard Bentley in London.  A few weeks later, it was published in New York under the name Moby Dick; or, The Whale. Although it was met with lukewarm […]

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One's Heart on a Sleeve

If you've left your heart in The City by the Bay, perhaps this handsome pair of cufflinks will ease the ache.  Vintage San Francisco transit tokens—first minted in 1945—are set in sterling silver mounts.  You can celebrate that wonderful city—and look great doing it. Please click on the photo above to learn more about them.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Birth of a Hero

On this day in 1854, Irish wit, playwright, bon vivant—and hero—Oscar Wilde was born. He is best known for his brilliant (and successful) late-Victorian “society” plays which include The Importance of Being Earnest, Lady Windemere’s Fan, A Woman of No Importance, and An Ideal Husband—plays which are still performed worldwide to this day. He wrote The Picture […]

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Feast of Saint Teresa

The Ecstasy of St. Teresa by Gian Lorenzo Bernini (1647-52) Saint Teresa of Avila was born in Gottarrendura, Spain in 1515.  After a rather normal girlhood, Teresa lost her mother, plunging the 14 year old girl into profound sadness.  She developed a strengthened devotion to Mary but also took solace in “frivolous” books about knights, […]

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For "Holly and the Ivy"

Foamy white tendrils—like the legs of a ghostly octopus—creep over the globular form of this dark brick red vase.  Made by Steuler in the 1960's or 1970's, it would make a nicely-understated Holiday centerpiece—filled with sprigs of holly, pine & ivy, fluffy white flowers or brilliant red blossoms.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about it.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Picking-up the Pace

Here's a bold piece, made by Stangl in the 1930's.  Two architectural handles punctuate the strong Art Deco form—which further pops with a glazing of vivid orange. Johann Stangl worked for Fulper Pottery (in Flemington, NJ) from 1910.  At the time, the company was known for its pricey Arts & Crafts "studio" ceramics—art quality pieces, tastefully designed and laboriously hand-crafted.  Johann Stangl became president of the company in 1926 and, three years later, changed the company's name to Stangl Pottery.  Johann embraced the new Art Deco movement, and re-calibrated the company away from expensive, low-volume studio pieces and toward popular-priced, high-volume production which would meet the needs of a growing middle-class, post War market. The piece above would surely make a...

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Wine, Women, and Song

In Munich, Germany, on this day in 1810, Crown Prince Ludwig of Bavaria (who would later became King Ludwig I of Bavaria) married Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen. In celebration of the event, the citizens of the city were invited to celebrate in the fields in front of the city’s gates.  And, thus, was born Oktoberfest—the […]

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Prinknash Abbey

The Prinknash Abbey (pronounced "Prinish") has been associated with the Roman Catholic Benedictine order since its founding in 1096.  When Henry VIII suppressed (and took) the abbey in 1539, he rented it to a wealthy supporter—sometimes using it himself as a hunting lodge.  For the next 400 years, various aristocratic families lived on the property until the property was returned to the Benedictines (in 1928) who moved-back, converting the large home into a monastery. In 1942, while excavating for construction work, a seam of red clay was discovered and the monks began to make and sell pottery to support the abbey.  Today the abbey no longer produces ceramics works.  They continue to "blend" incense (using Arabian frankincense gum, essential oils and spices) which...

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Arts & Crafts—Refreshened

My heart belongs to the Arts & Crafts period—which starts in the late Nineteenth Century and ends with (or shortly after) World War One.  That said, I do appreciate certain Modernist pieces, especially when they "lean back" (not forward) and exhibit a high degree of handwork, craftsmanship or organic spontaneity. I also think that traditional Arts & Crafts interiors can be wisely-punctuated with a few sensational, well-chosen Modernist pieces (as long as they stay true to the principles of beauty, nature and craftsmanship).  The piece above is a good example.  Made in the 1950's by Wendelin Stahl, its somewhat severe bottle form is softened with blooms of sapphire crystals which burst forth, seemingly randomly.  Stahl had a rather small studio in the...

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Leif Erikson Day

In 1925, President Calvin Coolidge—standing before a crowd of 100,000 at the Minnesota State Fair—declared that Norse explorer Leif Erikson was the first European to set foot in North America, 500 years before Columbus.  Shortly thereafter, 9 October was declared Leif Erikson Day. Leif Erikson was (thought to have been) born in Iceland around the […]

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Tourmaline for October

People born in October may choose between two birthstones: the opal or the tourmaline. Tourmalines were first mined in Ceylon (now called Sri Lanka) and shipped to Europe in vast quantities by the Dutch East India Company in the 1600's.  At the time, they were considered an exotic luxury.  Subsequently, they have been found in Brazil, Africa, Afghanistan and the United States.  They come in a variety of colors and some of them have magnetic qualities, due to the iron content in some examples. The Art Deco pot, shown above, is magnetic in appearance alone.  It was made by Roseville in the 1930's and its shape was inspired by classic Native American ceramics.  The glazing was named "Tourmaline," though it has...

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Now and Forever

On this day in 1982, Andrew Lloyd Webber’s musical, Cats, opened on Broadway at the Winter Garden Theatre.  The work, based on T. S. Eliot’s 1939 work “Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats,” ran for nearly 18 years—making it the longest-running Broadway musical at the time.  Directed by theatre legend Trevor Nunn and choreographed by […]

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German-American Day

On this day in 1683, thirteen German families landed in Philadelphia, PA, soon to found Germantown, PA.  The day was commemorated through the Nineteenth Century, only falling-out of favor during World War I. In 1983—on the 300th anniversary of the landing—the date was revived and designated officially as a day to honor the contributions of […]

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And a Literary Genius, Too

And speaking of artistic geniuses, let’s not forget “The Bard,” William Shakespeare (1564 – 1616).  Perhaps the world’s greatest playwright—of all time—his plays have influenced many other written works, have been adapted into musicals and operas, and have made a profound contribution to the spoken English language. The bookends above, made by Bradley & Hubbard […]

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Greatest. Artist. Ever.

The World is full of wonderful art—of varying (and disparate) eras, materials and aesthetics.  How can one possibly identify an all time favorite artist—especially if he loves so much art?  Well, for me it's easy.  My all-time favorite artist jumps right out: Michelangelo Buonarotti of Renaissance Florence.  He was a true Artistic Genius. Michelangelo lived in a place and era of artistic upheaval, dominated by artistic titans.  And Michelangelo was the best!  He painted (the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel), he sculpted (David, for starters) and he designed landmarks (like the dome of Saint Peter's Basilica).  Popes and princes sought Michelangelo's labors—perhaps realizing that his divine artistry may provide them with a bit of earthly eternity. The bronze-clad bookends, shown above, are modeled after...

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Farewell, William Morris

Artist, architect, textile designer, poet, historian, illustrator, writer, business man, social reformer, political agitator.  Such was the resumé of Victorian Renaissance Man, William Morris. At Oxford, Morris studied theology with the intention of joining the clergy.  He was fascinated with religion, Medieval literature, and the art and architecture of the Middle Ages.  He visited churches […]

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An Indian Hero, for the World

On this day in 1869—at the height of Victoria’s Empire—a new world hero was born, right under the Queen’s nose.  His name, Mohandas Gandhi, was later changed to the honorific Mahatma (meaning “venerable” or “high-souled”). Gandhi was born of a merchant class family, one which could afford to send him to law school in London. […]

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International Day of Older Persons

Every senior was once young—and, since then, has experienced a lifetime of lessons and made countless contributions.  In 1990, the United Nations declared 1 October as International Day of Older Persons, the day when we salute our elderly and recognize the special challenges they face.  Sadly, elder abuse is all too common.  So is loneliness, […]

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Culinary Inspiration

I've tended my first-ever garden this summer—with flowers, ferns, tomatoes and basil galore.  And what does one do with too much basil?  Make pesto, of course!  So, when I found this piece, I was thematically inclined to add it to the LEO Design collection.  It was made by Josef Emons & Söhne in Rheinbach, Germany in the 1960's.  A dollop of pesto-like glazing drips languorously over a cobalt blue undercolor.  It's a strange, unexpected and wonderful combination of color—coupled with an unpretentious, age-old ceramics form.  Learn more about this piece by clicking on the photo above.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues...

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A Day for Painters

“Narcissus” by Caravaggio, c. 1597-1599 (Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Antica, Rome) 29 September seems to be a day for painters.  Venetian Baroque artist Jacopo Comin (aka: Tintoretto, 1518)), Milanese bad boy Michelangelo Merisi (aka: Caravaggio, 1571), and Parisian Rococo painter François Boucher (1703) were all born on this day. Sadly, artists have left us on this […]

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Sognando l'Italia

Dreaming of Italy.  I could spend my every holiday in Italy—and, if fact, am roughing-out plans to return there next June.  Art, beauty and style have always permeated the Italian mindset—whether it's ancient Roman sculpture, paintings of the Renaissance, Turn-of-the-Century gardens, or Valentino's gowns today.  And the Italian instinct for "la bella figura" is not limited to the wealthy and the worldly.  Indeed, whether countryside or cosmopolitan, simple creations are often inseminated with the DNA of charm, grace or elegance. With this vase, made by Bitossi in the 1950's, style transcends simplicity.  Though its form and its manner of decorative incising is far from unique or innovative, the piece projects ample style and sophistication—la bella figura, indeed. This country cousin would be right...

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Life Finds a Way

I am intrigued by this vase.  While I am not typically drawn to "tribal" decor, this vase reveals a slightly different approach.  Perhaps the diamond-form shields and scalloped gadrooning give it a "Roman Empire" bearing (in my eyes).  I also find the glazing unique—pools of glassy citrus green resting in the crevices between pronounced, textured cork-like elements.  My mind wanders to a parched, sandy David Lean landscape with just a promise of spring green struggling through. Life always finds a way!  The vase was made by Bay in West Germany in the 1960's or 1970's.  Find out more about it by clicking on the photo above.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next...

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Another View

Another Florentine beauty, also made by Ars Italica in the 1960's.  Bands of hand-impressed motifs are interspersed with rows of hand-cut "notches."  Then a jewel tone combination of blue and green glazes give the piece a fresh (and refreshing) aqueous finish.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about it.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Blue View

Like my all-time favorite movie, A Room with a View, this fresh and handsome vase was made in Florence, Italy.  Crafted in the 1960's by Ars Italica, the piece was hand-impressed with decorative styli, then glazed with bands of jade green and a refreshing "Rimini Blue." The result: a stylish blend of bold Modernism and age-old Folk naiveté.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about it.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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The Dutch Surrender

On this day in 1664, Pieter Stuyvesant, director general of Nieuw Amsterdam, officially surrendered the territory to the English.  Soon the British re-named it New York—after the Duke of York, who would one day become King James II. Under Dutch control, Fort Amsterdam—at the tip of Manhattan, just below what is modern-day Bowling Green—had guarded […]

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A Real Keeper

Maybe I should keep this vase... Jasba Keramik was founded by Jakob Schwaderlapp in 1926 in Ransbach-Baumbach (half-way between Frankfurt and Köln, Germany). The company made tiles, architectural ceramics and specialized component parts for industry and manufacturing.  In time, Jasba added-on ceramic housewares and decorative "art pottery" for residential household use. In 1959, with WWII long over, Schwaderlapp sought ways to build his sales and improve his profit margins by "upgrading" his ceramics offerings.  He founded the "Ceramano" division which aimed to combine the look and quality of "studio" ceramics pieces with modern production techniques.  With a rising middle class in the post-war Western World—and demand for the fresh new Mid-Century Modernist aesthetic—the times were ripe for Schwaderlapp's gambit: to produce...

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Long Live the Queen!

On this day in 1896, Queen Victoria became the longest-reigning monarch in British history—surpassing her grandfather, George III.  And she still had four and a half years to go! Victoria still maintains this distinction, though Elizabeth II is closing-in; within two years from now, Elizabeth II will inherit that crown. The portrait of a mature […]

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Seaweed Sophistication

Though I am not certain who made this hand-thrown studio ceramic vase (or where it was made), it is the height of sophistication and quality.  Heavy stoneware is gently hand-formed on a wheel—resulting in an elegant profile, gently sloping shoulders, and an exquisitely-executed top spout.  Then it is finished with a sublime microcrystalline glazing treatment—a wonderful blend of organic blues, browns and greens—reminiscent of the swaying "laminae" of underwater seaweed.  Click on the photo above to learn more about this remarkable piece.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design -...

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A Prince Visits America

On this day in 1860, England’s then Prince of Wales—who would one day become King Edward VII—arrived on a visit to the U.S., making him the first British heir to the throne to visit North America.  For four months he toured Canada and the States, inaugurating bridges, viewing monuments, and drawing enormous crowds wherever he […]

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Talk Like a Pirate!

Two friends, Mark Summers and John Bauer, were playing a friendly game of racquetball. “Ahrrrrrr!” one cried as the ball hit him.  And, thus, was born “International Talk Like a Pirate Day!”  In truth, the founding incident took place on 6 June 1995—commemorated as D-Day—but out of respect for that historical milestone, they decided to […]

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What To Do?

What to do?  What to do?  What to do?  These hand-crafted cast pewter tokens will help you make executive decisions with ease—whether you should "Risk It" or "Play It Safe."  Made in California and sold in sets of four.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about them.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Citizenship Day

17 September is Citizenship Day—a day on which Americans are encouraged to recognize and appreciate their U.S. citizenship.  It’s also the day (in 1787) when the U.S. Constitutional Convention signed the Constitution.  In recent years, it has been sometimes referred to as “Constitution and Citizenship Day.” Happy Citizenship Day!

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Autumn Shades - part V

Warm brass, warm heart.  This little hand-sculpted, cast pewter heart is finished with a brassy wash and fitted with a keyring.  Useful, handsome and sentimental. Please click on the photo above to learn more about it.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Autumn Shades - part IV

Another suggestion of Autumn: a Dümler & Brieden "Komet" pitcher with Secessionist-inspired bas relief.  Rich orange glaze pops against a steely matte blue underglaze.  Made in 1972.  Click on the photo above to learn more about it. More Autumn inspiration tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Autumn Shades - part III

When Autumn arrives, and the days shorten, we turn-up our lamps and light the candles and fireplaces.  What would look better than flickering light glancing off the warm, polished surface of this English Arts & Crafts copper tray?  A radiant foliate design is hand-tooled upon the hand-beaten surface of the tray—perfect whether presenting warm mushroom tartlets or eight to ten mugs of hot mulled wine.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about it.  More Autumn inspiration tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"...

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Autumn Shades - part II

Autumn is a time for hearth and home.  And Mid-Century ceramicists often derived inspiration from age-old utilitarian pieces, some centuries old.  This piece by Carstens Atlelier is a case-in-point.  Designed by Gerda Heuckeroth in the 1960's, it bears a flat, strap-like handle over it's ample and sensuous body.  And it's finished with an organic, matte glaze which drips over a dark brown underglaze—a color somewhere between reddish orange and orangish red.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about it. More Autumn inspiration tomorrow.    LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on...

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Autumn Shades - part I

Crisp evenings, the crackle of fallen leaves underfoot—some of the seasonal cues of the approaching Autumn.  Though the Autumn doesn't officially begin for another ten days, we're ready for the season here at LEO Design!  Let's start the season with this handsome Mid-Century Dutch ceramic vase from the 1960's or 1970's.  The curvaceous form is dressed in a dappled, matte orange glaze.  A perfect combination of classic and modern—all the while voluptuous, bold and strong.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about this striking piece. More Autumn inspiration tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow...

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Seventeen Years On

Seventeen years on.  It's remarkable to ponder how much has changed—and yet, where has the time gone?  New York and the Nation largely have bounced-back.  Yet, for those who escaped with their lives—and for the survivors of those who did not—life will never be the same.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Golden Light

We are still enjoying the last few days of late-summer's golden light—gently illuminating all things beautifully from low on the horizon.  Pleasant days.  Cooling nights.  Harvest. Leaves. Contentment.  This set of six tulip-form cocktail glasses will present your golden bubbly in style.  Softly faceted and finished with an iridescent gold wash, they were made in the 1920's and will signal the onset of the season for comfort, gathering and nesting.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about them.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design -...

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Key to a Heart

Wonderfully tactile, this pewter heart makes a lovely keyring—and a handsome, sentimental gift.  It comes in both the original pewter (shown) and a brassy finish.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about it.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Modern Secessionism

Mark Twain is quoted as saying, "History does not repeat itself, but it often rhymes."  Similarly, the decorative arts will sometimes "lift" inspiration from an earlier period—reinterpreting the past in a new, fresh and modified way.  The vase above, made by Dümler & Brieden in 1972, is just such an example.  While the piece has a Mid-Century Modernist sensibility, it is inspired by the earlier Turn-of-the-Century Secessionist Movement.  A short walk through Vienna will reveal no shortage of wonderful Secessionist architecture, often embellished with ceramic tile, trim and decor like the vase, shown above.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about it.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop...

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Seeing the Big Picture

Aging eyes still appreciate beauty—but sometimes they just need a little extra help!  This contemporary magnifying glass packs a nice powerful punch.  It is framed in a bronze-finished brass and would make a handsome (and discreet) addition to any desk, kitchen drawer or nightstand.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about it. LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Fit for a Tsar

What’s a Tsar to do?  Try as he might, his people just wouldn’t modernize!  Peter the Great had an idea.  On this day in 1698, Tsar Peter I levied a tax on all men who insisted on wearing a beard.  Clergymen and peasants were exempt from the levy but everyone else had to pay. Men […]

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“Extra! Extra!”

Today is National Paperboys’ Day.  On this day in 1833, ten year old Barney Flaherty was hired to deliver the New York Sun.  Little Barney—responding to a classified ad seeking “a number of steady men”—was the first of countless boys who made money delivering newspapers door-to-door or on the streets.  Despite the romanticized, iconic image […]

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In Recognition of Labor

Today let us salute—and thank—all those who contribute to our country by the sweat of their brows and the brawn of their biceps.  For all those strong legs, straight backs, and enduring wills, let’s be grateful. The iron man, depicted on the cast iron bookends above, represents the hundreds of thousands of iron mill workers […]

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Working Man Hero

From time to time, a country, a community or a culture will re-discover its appreciation for the talented working man (or woman).  During the Renaissance, important and powerful guilds were formed to enforce high standards amongst its members and to protect the workers and the reputation of the trade.  During the Age of Industrialization, newly-formed unions ensured that tradesmen were trained, properly compensated and kept safe.  In the early twentieth century—between the wars—there was an artistic movement which sought to present the laborer (and his class) in a dramatic, dynamic, or heroic manner (think of the American Ash Can painters, Soviet poster art, or the muscular human sculpture which embellishes 1930‘s Art Deco architecture).  After World War II, the Danish...

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Malachite

Malachite has been used by artists and craftsmen for millennia—fashioned into jewelry (like the pin, above), carved into decorative objects, even ground-up and added to paints.  It is found in the Russian Urals, Africa, Australia, Mexico and the U.S. Southwest. Archeologists have found evidence of the stone being mined in Israel over 3000 years ago. […]

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Summer Sun

Like a swirling, blazing Van Gogh summer sun, we end August with this enormous "floor vase" by Scheurich, West Germany.  Made in the 1960’s or 1970’s, finger-drawn swirls clear-away the outer textured “volcanic” glazing—revealing the orange underglaze below. With this vase, you'll be transported to Provence with a glance.

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The Tail End of Summer's Dog Days

The Summer doldrums—sometimes called the Dog Days—will soon be behind us.  Sweaters will come-out and the school bell will ring.  This pair of bronze bookends capture a finely-cast terrier—alert and tense with energy.  He'll happily round-up and supervise your book collection on desk, bookshelf or credenza.  Click on the photo above to learn more about it.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres

Self-portrait of the artist at the age of 24 (Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York) On this day in 1780, Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres was born to Jean-Marie-Joseph Ingres, himself a bit of an artistic dabbler and would-be Renaissance Man.  With his father’s encouragement, the son would develop his skill and eventually become one of France’s most […]

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Summer Blues - part VI

Let's end our parade of blue ceramics with this exceptionally handsome piece by Karlsruhe.  Formed with heavy strap handles, it is finished with a sophisticated verdigris blue—under which a hint of eggplant shows through.  I love this vase!  Learn more about it by clicking on the photo above.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Summer Blues - part V

There's something "just right" about the slope of this ceramic vessel—and the arched handle, attached.  Made by Van Daalen, it is dressed in an intriguing mottled blue glaze—reminiscent of the Earth, as seen from space.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about it. More Summer Blues tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Summer Blues - part IV

Like an inscrutable Yves Klein canvas, this cylindrical ceramic vase by Hoy Hey wears a rich matte ultramarine blue glaze.  Let it bring a sense of centering calm to your busy office or (even busier) home.  Click on the photo above to learn more about it. More Summer Blues tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Summer Blues - part III

Something about this unusual vase (the color, the shape?) reminds me of a rare and mysterious sea mammal.  I see the beautifully mottled skin of an exotic arctic whale.  Or the turgid, "hydrodynamic" form of a North Sea dolphin.  And, like these wonderful sea creatures, I've never seen another vase quite like this.  Click on the photo above to learn more about it. More Summer Blues tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Summer Blues - part II

Foamy whitecaps of highly-textured glaze ride atop a midnight blue underglaze on this simple vase by Scheurich, West Germany.  Click on the photo above to learn more about it. More Summer Blues tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Summer Blues - part I

Sea, sky and ceramics.  What could be more summery?  Especially in summery shades of blue.  For the next few days, we'll be sharing a collection of recently acquired art pottery—all in wonderful shades of summery blue.  Like the piece above.  Made by Pierrefonds around 1910, this French Art Nouveau vase wears a peppery blue underglaze while a sophisticated cornflower glaze drips over its elegant shoulders.  It is equally compelling either alone or as part of a larger collection.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about it. More Summer Blues tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us...

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Last Chance for LEO

Today’s the final day of Leo.  Tomorrow, the sun moves into Virgo, a sure sign that summer is running its final lap. Enjoy what remains of a beautiful summer and remember:  It’s always Leo at LEO Design.

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A Fiftieth State

On this day in 1959, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed a proclamation dissolving the Territory of Hawaii and declaring that Hawaii was now admitted into the Union.  Congress had previously passed “An Act to Provide for the Admission of the State of Hawaii into the Union”—and the people of Hawaii voted (by 93%!) for statehood. […]

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Inkpot Inspiration - part III

Our third and final "inkpot" vase is this one by Ceramano.  Called "Syrakus," it is hand-striated and finished with gunmetal, black and white glazes.  It's one of several pieces from the line, now on-view in the LEO Design on-line store.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about it.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Inkpot Inspiration - part II

This wonderfully complex studio vase intrigues me.  Made by Elmar & Elke Kubicek, it was hand-formed in the shape of an inkpot.  Then it was glazed with an oxblood, micro-crystalline glaze—enhanced with a crusty, brown froth.  Its most earthy sensibility—color, size and basic shape—is reminiscent of a heart (and not the saccharine, Valentine's Day variety).  Click on the photo above to learn more about it.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Inkpot Inspiration - part I

The "Classic Inkpot" form makes for an interesting and useful vase.  Because of its smallish size, it is a great teammate within a larger collection—as it provides size variation while standing in front of taller pieces.  And, unlike a bowl, there is no "awkward interior." The finished shoulders always look good—even when looking-down upon it.  For three days, we'll be sharing some of our most interesting inkpot vases, now in-stock at LEO Design. The piece above is European-made, from the 1960's, 1970's or 1980's.  It is glazed in a spontaneous mix of cobalt blue, rusty brown and hints of white.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about it.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently...

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Rectory Chic

Do you ever feel like exiting the rat race?  Leaving the city?  Joining a nice, simple, cloistered monastery? Perhaps that fleeting feeling is best contemplated during less-stressful moments. In the meantime, a touch of Rectory Chic might give you just enough of a momentary retreat to get you through the rest of the day.  Made in the […]

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Black Mother-of-Pearl

Mother-of-Pearl is the “nacreous” (that is, containing the organic material “nacre”) inner-shell lining of certain mollusks—the same material that surrounds a natural pearl (also produced by those certain mollusks).  Like the shells (and pearls) themselves, the mother-of-pearl comes in a range of colors from white to black—though it is usually iridescent, thus, one can see […]

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Farewell, Macbeth

Macbeth, the real King of Scotland, was killed on this day in 1057.  At war with England, he was killed in battle during an English invasion (or died some days later, after being mortally wounded).  Called “The Red King,” he was the King of Scotland (sometimes called “Alba”) from 1040 until his death.  He was […]

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Doubles, Served

Serve-up style with these four double old-fashioned rocks glasses from the 1960’s. The Forehand is demonstrated by our handsome pro, fitted in his crisp tennis whites. Your next cocktail hour is bound to be a racquet!  See the set of four glasses by clicking on the photo above.

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Happy Left-Handers’ Day

Since 1976, 13 August has been celebrated as “Left-handers’ Day,” a day to promote the uniqueness and contributions of the world’s “lefties” (estimated at 7 – 10% of the population). Left-handers International strives to raise public awareness of the very real difficulties they often endure living in a right-handed world. Despite these difficulties, left-handers have contributed significantly to the worlds

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Happy Birthday, George!

On 12 August 1762, King George IV of England was born.  His father (George III), with whom he had a terrible relationship, forced him to marry his cousin, Caroline of Brunswick, whom he hated as much as his father.  They had one child, Charlotte, after which he kept his wife as far away from himself as possible.  He didn’t even allow her to attend his eventual coronation! Instead, he took comfort in the arms of other women, most notoriously, Mrs.

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Can a Cloud Have a Pewter Lining?

How can it be?  I dislike smoking—and, yet, I love smoking accessories.  And this Italian cast pewter "smoking box" is a perfect illustration.  With a hinged lid and divots to hold cigarettes or a cigar, it is a handsome solution to an otherwise messy problem.  And if you do not smoke, it will hold your cufflinks, rings or collar stays with efficiency and style. Please click on the photo above  to learn more about it.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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More Birdsong

Yesterday we talked about the Fifth International Scouting Jamboree in Vogelenzang (“birdsong”), Netherlands in 1937.  Carrying-on with this theme, you’ll see above a hand-painted plaque with two fluffy birds (c. 1960’s – 1970’s). Siblings? Spouses? Mother & Chick?  I'm just not sure.  What I do know is that it's beautifully designed, nicely hand-painted and would make a handsome addition to any desk, home or office.  It was made in Denmark by Fajence Aluminia.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about it.

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The Boys March In

On this day in 1937, Dutch Scouting (the Padvinders or “Path Finders”) commemorated the end of the Fifth International Jamboree (bijeenkomst or “meeting”) with this Dutch-made ceramic transferware plate.  Dutch Boy Scouting was founded in 1910, followed by Girl Scouting the following year.  The Netherlands became part of the World Organization of the Scout Movement in […]

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Lots of LEOs - XVII

  Let's end our parade of LEOs with this whimsical offering: a Danish Modern stoneware plaque by Knud Kyhn for Royal Copenhagen. This frisky feline is caught in mid-leap, paw extended toward his feathered feast.  It's made to hang on the wall, though it could also be permanently mounted into a tile installation.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about it.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"  

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Lots of LEOs - XVI

The muscular energy of this cast bronze lioness belies her small size and simplicity of design.  And yet, the sculptor has captured—with great economy—the powerful control of this athletic huntress.  Learn more about her by clicking on the photo above. Another LEO tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Lots of LEOs - XV

The only thing better than a LEO is—two LEOs!  This pair of bookends, made by Bradley & Hubbard (Meriden, CT) in the 1930's, are crafted of cast iron and finished with a golden wash.  They are inspired by the Nineteenth Century work of French anamalier Antoine-Louis Barye.  Because they are "mirrored"—that is, one faces left while the other faces right—two moulds were required (and twice as much work).  It also means that both of your lions will be facing forward on your bookshelf.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about them.  Another LEO tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which...

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Lots of LEOs - XIV

Another domestic lioness—house trained, yes, but still a lion at heart!  Sculpted of cast brass and finished with a verdigris bronze patina, the sculptor has captured beautifully the intelligence, intensity and coiled energy of a cat ready-to-spring. She'll faithfully guard your coffee table, occupy your windowsill, or even hold open a door for you.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about her. Another LEO tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Lots of LEOs - XIII

Don't let this LEO's modest size (and price) obscure his style and presence He's full of himself, indeed.  Legs astride, he conveys a bold confidence—and will guard your desk or bookshelf zealously.  He's made of cast bronze in the American MidWest.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about him.  Another LEO tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Lots of LEOs - XII

This cast iron lion is a bank and was made around 1900.  He can be opened with a screwdriver and still has traces of the original paint which dressed him.  Perhaps a young LEO can practice his saving skills with this handsome and useful gift.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about him. Another LEO tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Lots of LEOs - XI

Not every LEO lives in the savannah.  These fierce little lions prowl a British backyard.  Crafted in England in the 1930's, these cast brass bookends have an "illustrated storybook" sensibility— and were designed and made at a time when children's books did not shy from the spooky, the dark or the moral-laden.  Learn more about them by clicking on the photo above. Another LEO tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Lots of LEOs - X

Today we enter August and—as suggested above—the sun remains high in LEO’s segment of the heavens.  The regal bronze-clad lion sculpture, shown above, is modeled after the famous walking lion by French anamalier Antoine-Louis Barye (1796-1875).  It is the jewel in the crown of our collection of handsome lions, now in-store.  Perhaps it would make a nice gift for your favorite LEO?

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Lots of LEOs - IX

The stylized profile of a proud lion graces the faces of these Danish Modernist cufflinks from the 1950's.  They are marked 830 silver and will look great on the cuff of your favorite LEO.  To learn more about this pair, please click on the photo above. Another LEO tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Lots of LEOs - VIII

Antoine-Louis Bayre (1795-1875) was the premier Parisian Anamalier of the Nineteenth Century.  Even today, he remains amongst the best sculptors of animals in history.  His works displayed classic, active and highly naturalistic poses—capturing the energy, beauty and dignity of his wild animal subjects. Bayre was well-known in his lifetime and many of his works were cast in various sizes which allowed his work to find homes in museums, grand palaces or upper middle class homes.  This pair of bookends, made by Bradley & Hubbard (Connecticut) in the 1920's or 1930's, are inspired by the French master's work. Please click on the photo above to learn more about them. Another LEO tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently...

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Lots of LEOs - VII

Rippling with tension and anticipation, this regal lion stalks its prey from atop a rocky cliff.  The sculptor really captured the energy and attitude of this feline predator—a pair of bookends from the 1920's or 1930's.  They are a gift sure to inspire any hardworking LEO seeking to succeed in today's jungle.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about this gift. Another LEO tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Lots of LEOs - VI

Many lions drift toward "fierce."  This little cast bronze lion is unabashedly cute—and, perhaps, just a little vulnerable. Made in the Michigan, he'll keep you in his gaze with his (dare I say it?) puppy eyes.  Click on the photo above to learn more about him. Another LEO tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Lots of LEOs - V

A (hungry-looking) mountain lion stalks its prey on this pair of cast iron bookends from the 1920's.  Beautifully sculpted, it crackles with tension—and still has small remnants of its original (90 year old) paint.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about it. Another LEO tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Lots of LEOs - IV

The King of the Jungle doesn't mind helping-out in the kitchen.  This English bronze mortar and pestle is small but handy—not to mention, stylish. Use it to pulverize fresh herbs and make small batches of culinary pastes.  You will find-out more about it by clicking on the photo above. Another LEO tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Lots of LEOs - III

Just remember: not all LEOs are boys!  This cast bronze lioness will stalk your desk with style—holding-down your papers, if you wish.  Click on the picture above to learn more about her. Another LEO tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Lots of LEOs - II

This little LEO—made of cast bronze in California—has the word "Courage" impressed upon his tummy.  Though small, he is full of style (and substance).  And a welcome gift for any LEO in your life.  Click on the photo above to learn more about him Another LEO tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Lots of LEOs - I

Welcome, LEO!  It was 28 years ago, this month, when we first opened our doors on Bleecker Street.  Boy, how things have changed!  One thing that has not changed is the enormous pride LEOs take in their sun sign, the lion. Therefore, indulge us why we share a "parade" of lion items over the next several days. Shown above, a pair of cast iron "Proud Lion" bookends from the 1920's.  They have been cast in fine detail and finished with a copper patina.  Made in the 1920's, they will be warmly-received by any self-respecting LEO. Please click on the photo above to learn more about these bookends. And, by the way, LEO extends from 23 July to 22 August. Another LEO...

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Heavy/Light

"Brutalist" design took-off after World War II.  It began in the world of architecture, inspired by the design of Le Corbusier—in particular, with his use of unfinished poured cement as a building material.  The French word for "raw" (unfinished) cement is Béton-Brut, which (one theory proposes) may have provided the genesis of the word "Brutalist."  Cast cement was seen as a revolutionary material in architecture. It was inexpensive, suitable for expressive, novel shapes, and it was "honest" (meaning it duplicated its mould perfectly and presented itself without embellishment or affectation).  For better or worse, cement became a very popular architectural material in the 1950's , 60's and 70's. Novel architectural trends spread throughout the design world, including to the decorative arts...

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The Dog Days of Summer

It’s already happening—the Dog Days of Summer have arrived.  Hot.  Smelly.  The crosswalk seemingly sinking beneath our feet.  But where does the term originate? It began in ancient Rome.  Astronomers noticed that during the period when Sirius (also called the “Dog Star”—and the brightest star in the sky) rose and set alongside the sun, the […]

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Easy Being Green - IV

Let's wrap-up this little parade of green pottery with another studio-made piece, this time crafted by Walter & Gisela Baumfalk.  A fine crystalline glaze lies atop a metallic gunmetal undercolor.  The tapering form culminates in a lipped top band.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about it.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Easy Being Green - III

This European hand-thrown stoneware pitcher is dressed in a metallic gunmetal and mossy-green glaze. The piece has—at once—a naive, folk craft sensibility and a highly sophisticated Modernist edge.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about it. More green ceramics tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Easy Being Green - II

Though LEO Design has a broad selection of German ceramics, East German ceramics are much less common and a bit harder to find.  The example above, by Karl Jüttner, was made in the Seventies.  A hand-incised pot is finished with an organic metallic-moss green glaze. Learn more about it by clicking on the photo above. More green ceramics tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Easy Being Green - I

Though Kermit the Frog might disagree, green is easy. Green—the color of leaves, grass and moss—is restful, restoring, and blends beautifully with wood in an interior environment.  I especially like dark, mossy (and a little muddy) greens which give me a sense of cool comfort. The pitcher above, made in the 1960's or 1970's, was crafted by Übelacker, West Germany. The Cubist relief is reminiscent of the Modernist sculpture of Louise Nevelson.  Nevelson was born in The Ukraine in 1899 and emigrated to The States with her family as a schoolgirl.  Her sculptures were made of found objects, usually wooden, which she assembled in wall-mounted or freestanding "shadowbox" style assemblies.  They were often painted monochromatically, often black or white.  Nevelson's sculptures can...

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Son of a Tailor

On this day in 1486, Florentine artist Andrea d’Agnolo di Francesco di Luca di Paolo del Migliore was born to a tailor and his wife. At eight years of age, the boy was apprenticed to a goldsmith, and, later, to a woodcarver and painter.   Before long, Andrea opened his own studio (with a partner) […]

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Space Age Ceramics - part VI

We'll end this little space trip of otherworldly, planetary ceramics with another piece by Ruscha.  Glaze master Otto Gerharz has crafted a rich—call it sublime—glaze which captures the mystery and romance of the moon.  It was made in the 1960's or 1970's and can be found by clicking on the photo above.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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Space Age Ceramics - part V

Here's another wonderful glaze, made by Ruscha's glaze master, Otto Gerharz.  Unlike some of the "lunar glazes" shared in the past few days, this glaze is more verdant—like a gassy, oxygen-rich planet. One would suspect that life does exist on this organic planet. The mossy bluish-green overglaze hovers over a slightly metallic brown undercoat.  It was made in the 1960's or 1970's and you can find out more about it by clicking on the photo above. More Space Age ceramics tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design -...

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Space Age Ceramics - part IV

Form is nice—but shapes can be easily copied. It's in the glaze master's secret notebook—properly locked away—that the magic is revealed. And this glaze is sensational! Foamy waves of white pumice cling to an equally-textured grey underglaze. It all adds up to an otherworldly effect—like the gaseous clouds encircling a distant planet. Made by Carstens in West Germany in the 1960's or 1970's.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about it. More Space Age ceramics tomorrow.   LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed.  While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate  (www.LEOdesignNYC.com). Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts" Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"

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