IFDA NY Selects Winners at NY NOW

IFDA Selects rolled into town once again with the opening of the NY NOW show at Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, which ran February 4-8, 2017.  Volunteer judges and board members from the New York Chapter of the International Furnishings and Design Association (IFDA NY), all major players in the design field, were on-hand to walk the floor of this expansive home, lifestyle and gift show and choose Best In Show in various categories.  Here, the winners share their inspirations.

Art: Tunisian Handicraft

Achraf Baccouch, a stylist, designer and interior architect based in Tunisia, won in this category for his armchair hand-painted with an image of Meryl Streep. In his words, his work “combines Mediterranean culture with a modern twist.”

Furniture:  Michael Aram

The handcrafted, polished aluminum Café Table from Michael Aram’s Enchanted Forest Collection couldn’t go unnoticed.  Said Aram, “For me, the shapes conjure a sense of freshness and fragility. At the same time the textures represent a metaphor for life itself…growth, vitality, pulsation…What I enjoy about these furniture pieces is that in a way they are ‘slices’ of nature, small vignettes of the forest. It is fascinating to imagine the outside world infiltrating my interior spaces, as if the room is being gently consumed by nature.”

Gourmet HousewaresSophistiplate

This Italian-made disposable paper dinnerware with patented shapes and curated sets elevate any table. The culinary arts and hospitality with the underlying principle of “no fuss” inspired this father-and-son team to found the company in 2016.  They are both housewares industry veterans with a passion for innovation, design and the culinary experience. The son also has a degree in hospitality and is classically trained as a chef.

Green Sensibility: Peterman’s Boards & Bowls

This upcycled wood collection of kitchenware and tabletop speaks green.  “Our story began with what to do with trees that have fallen and are rotting in the woods,” said co-owner Michele Jurado. Her partner Spencer Peterman found that this wood, which is disfigured by the beginnings of decomposition, when turned on a lathe produces strikingly unique bowls and other pieces.  Almost all the wood they use is from locally fallen trees in Western Massachusetts, such as maple, cherry or black walnut.  All their items are food-safe.  Products featured at left include bottle stoppers and salad tossers.

Innovative Booth Design: Chilewich

Innovation in textile design has defined Chilewich, which has produced fabrics for numerous applications.  Yet another feather can now be added to their cap, Innovative Booth Design.  The space was open, clean, modern, yet comprehensive, displaying the breadth and depth of their offerings.

Lighting: Latif Mecikukic Design

This custom lighting resource for chandeliers designed by Latif Mecikukic wowed the judges with its brilliance.  Mecikukic credits his years of experience and expertise with his ability to create unique designs that ultimately define the sophisticated rooms they grace.


Tabletop: Tina Frey Designs

Tina Frey, featured at center in the photo with two IFDA judges, hand-sculpts her designs in San Francisco with an emphasis on simplicity and function.  “Soft forms — reminiscent of organic shapes — the ocean, textured rocks and beach glass are some of the things that inspire my work,” said Frey.  All pieces are handmade of food-safe, lead-free resin.

Textiles: Thompson Street Studio

“We take traditional textile techniques and interpret them in a modern way,” advised Mariko Pieterse, ‪Design Assistant at Thompson Street Studio.  Textile designer Kiva Motnyk founded the company in 2014 and works in collaboration with a growing team of artists, designers and artisans.  The pieces are handmade in the SoHo studio out of natural and hand-selected found materials.

Wallcoverings: Wallshoppe

Only in business a matter of months, this new Los Angeles-based wallpaper resource is sure to take the design world by storm.  Designs by decorator, shop owner and author Nathan Turner were on display, among other offerings, in clever “selfie booths” at the show.  “I love color and California designs are filled with color,” said Turner.  “I wanted to bring that pop to wallpaper, with the Malibu toile, the Goldfish pattern and others where the colors are cohesive.” A favorite of the judges, his Kiss My A** wallpaper shown above, in a “selfie booth.  The papers are produced locally in the U.S. of 100% non-toxic materials with no PVC.

The International Furnishings and Design Association (IFDA), founded in New York City in 1947 and now with 14 chapters worldwide, provides a professional forum for communication and interaction among its high-profile members.  The IFDA, a not-for-profit volunteer-run association, also promotes career advancement and educational opportunities and is structured to increase public awareness of the furnishings and design industry through specialized programming, networking and service to the community.

IFDA NY thanks its INTERNATIONAL Platinum Sponsors: The Shade Store | Sunbrella; INTERNATIONAL Silver Sponsors: .design | Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams and Chapter GOLD Sponsors:  American Hardwood Information Center | Benjamin Moore & Co. | Cliff Young Ltd. | HG Stones | Hunter Douglas | Kravet Inc. | New York Design Center | NY NOW | Resource Furniture | Stacy Garcia New York.