Tag Archives: interior design

FIT’S REALITY STARS WERE HERE TO MAKE FRIENDS

“If you get the chance to be on TV, take it!” Cathy Hobbs, Interior Design ’06, advised a group of students and alumni in the John E. Reeves Great Hall on Tuesday. “It’s the gift that keeps on giving.”

Hobbs was one of three alumni TV stars invited to talk about their careers in the spotlight on Tuesday, in the culminating event of Alumni Day of Legacy Week. Brian Williams, Fashion Merchandising Management, vice president of alumni affairs for the FIT Student Association, moderated.

All three stars were glad they said yes to the tube.

“TV has made me an international figure,” said Sondra Celli, Menswear Design and Marketing ’78, known for her TLC shows My Big Fat American Gypsy Wedding and Bling It On. (When TLC called her about the show, she was initially hesitant.) “I could never have bought this much press.”

“I never thought I’d become a gypsy designer,” Sondra Celli said. “They pulled my name out of someone’s Rolodex and started calling me.”

Hobbs, a TV reporter and finalist on Season 6 of HGTV’s Design Star, remembered the taping process as being incredibly intense. She was picked up in a van and left in a hotel without her cell phone or wallet. “It was like being incarcerated.” And she was miked constantly. Whenever her microphone was off, she was “on ice,” which meant she wasn’t allowed to speak. Oh, and her daughter was one year old at the time.

For Cathy Hobbs, Interior Design ’06, “Reality shows seemed like the shortest line between two points.”

Daniel Silverstein, Fashion Design ’10, found the auditions for Fashion Star very daunting. A casting agent emailed him, offering a VIP interview. When he got to the show, he understood that he might not be so special after all. “There were 100 VIPs and also a line of not-VIPs around the block.”

“Because of the show, I’ve sold to Saks, I’ve sold to Macy’s, I’ve sold to Express,” Daniel Silverstein said. “When I exhibit at trade shows, buyers think, ‘NBC invested in you, so I can too.'”

But all three have survived their dabblings with reality. Celli’s business has expanded by leaps and bounds. Hobbs has a line of paints, with other products coming soon. And Silverstein has already sold a million dollars worth of his product.

As soon as there’s a reality show that pits writers and editors against each other in a series of solitary, internal challenges, Hue is definitely going to audition.

Celli will rhinestone anything: glasses, shoes, even toilet paper. (Honey Boo Boo, eat your heart out.)

MORE STUPENDOUS WORK BY FIT STUDENTS

A public service announcement from Hue: Anyone who hasn’t seen the Art & Design Graduating Student Exhibition is missing out.

But if you are missing it, or if you did miss it (it closes May 23), then here is your consolation prize: more photos of the fabulous work by the (equally fabulous) Smiljana Peros.

In Packaging Design, in the lobby of The Museum at FIT:

Skin care product packaging by Kathleen Gamboa, Packaging Design ’13. The triangular boxes have major shelf appeal.

In Illustration, in the downstairs gallery at The Museum at FIT:

“Queen Elizabeth as the Cat and the Fiddle,” an oil painting by Sunna Yim, Illustration ’13. So lifelike, one could almost believe that man-dog is real!

Another luscious illustration with phenomenal detail:

“Solitary Woman,” an oil painting by Alyssa Bauer, Illustration ’13.

The floor plans by the Interior Design BFA students were hard to capture in a photo, so here’s a design by an AAS Interior Design student.

“Bird House — Inspiration: Ridley Scott,” a mixed media project by Esther Bang, Interior Design.

Last but not least, the Visual Presentation and Exhibition Design group project is an exhibition about the superhero, entitled “Heroes and Villains,” in the Pomerantz lobby. It’s a lot of fun, especially for youngins and comic-book geeks, but also for anyone who enjoys superhero movies and innovative exhibitions.

A jester in the Heroes & Villains exhibition in the Pomerantz lobby, created by the Visual Presentation and Exhibition Design graduating students.

BALI + BAMBOO = BEIGE BEAUTY

While vacationing in Bali, Professor Joan Melnick, Interior Design ’61, spent a day in a bamboo wonderland. She was inspired to visit after watching a Ted Talk.

Almost everything in the Green School and adjacent Green Village are made out of bamboo. Because bamboo takes just four years to mature, harvesting it doesn’t cause deforestation. The school’s founder, John Hardy, helped set up bamboo farms where the village now gets its wood.

A bamboo house

Swiss Family Robinson goes green: The Green Village in Bali. All photos courtesy of the Green Village and Ibuku.

The school offers its mostly international students a natural, holistic education. Instead of spending the whole day at a desk, students explore their surroundings and help create their own experiential curricula.

The Green Village, created by Hardy’s daughter Elora, allows for a community of residents by the school.

A villa at night

A villa at night.

The architecture is marvelous. All the structures fit together without nails, and the entire village is powered by a nearby river. “The light and shapes are beautifully undulated,” Melnick says.

A center column of bamboo with a concrete base provides strength for the multilevel structures.

Bamboo column

The foundation for the buildings starts with a column of bamboo.

Instead of blueprints, the architects create 3D models.

3D model

A “blueprint” for a bamboo villa.

“The Balinese are considered incredible craftsmen,” Melnick says. “That’s something we’ve lost in Western culture.”

worker on the roof

Working on a bamboo roof. Building is mostly done by hand.

As of now, three homes have been built. Visitors can rent them short-term or long-term. The interiors are, of course, stunning.

Green Village living room

That’s some serious cross-ventilation.

It’s paradise. And if we see more sustainable developments like this, maybe this paradise will last for future generations.

LIFE IN PLASTIC, IT’S FANTASTIC

All those who complain that there isn’t enough pink at FIT should please proceed to the lobby of the Pomerantz Art and Design Center. There, Mattel has teamed up with FIT to create “The Pink Issue,” an homage to Barbie from five Art and Design majors.

Hue was quite fond of the intricately decorated dollhouses dreamed up by Interior Design students. A dream house indeed! This bathroom, if scaled to human size, would be larger than Hue’s whole apartment.

A Barbie dollhouse

"A Timeless Barbie Powder Room" by Jessica L. Mazur, Interior Design '13

The bubble bath looks positively inviting, though Hue wonders who’s going to clean up the mess on the floor. (Sorry, Ken.)

This bedroom looks like fun for the feet… but is it pink enough? One thing’s for sure: Barbie’s friends can spill as much rosé as they like onto the rug, with no one the wiser.

Another Barbie dollhouse

"Green is the New Chic" by Katie McTammany, Interior Design '13

Hue finds this dress, seemingly made out of shopping bags, to die for. Barbie would light up the red carpet. But the fantasy would be crushed once she hopped into a cab. She’d have to walk home, unless she came in a Segway.

A life-size Barbie dress

"Shopaholic" by Maor Tapiro, Menswear '13

The Pink Issue runs through September 3.