PaperCity Magazine

November 2014 - Houston

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everybody wore suits. We tried it one time, and we were miserable. Our whole design thing is about comfort, not about stiffness, so we put our jeans back on. TELL US ABOUT YOUR OWN HOMES BW: Mitchell lives 10 minutes from the factory (in North Carolina) and I live 25. If we're not on the road, we're in the factory. MG: I live in a 3,500 square foot Adirondack-style house on a lake. It's very comfy. On the other hand, Bob lives in a mansion. BW: It's not a mansion! But it's a big, red brick Georgian Colonial with columns, very formal. If you go in, it's a mix of midcentury and modern pieces. MG: It's one of the older, richer neighborhoods. When we first moved to Victory 20 years ago, it was restricted. The idea of someone gay or Jewish was unheard of. BW: Or Northern! MG: Or Northern. He was on the local museum board and made friends with all the old ladies. By then, they knew and loved him. DO YOUR HOUSES INFLUENCE YOUR COLLECTIONS? BW: Totally. MG: A lot of times, we'll be thinking of something we want for ourselves, especially Bob, and it ends up in the store. BW: I'm a very selfish designer. It's all about, okay, which house can I put this in? MG: That's what a brand like ours is all about, it's not about doing tons of research and trying to figure out what someone else likes, it's about what we like. Thankfully our taste resonates with a lot of consumers, and business is great. BW: We have a new piece we're getting ready to introduce for spring. It's a black cabinet with gray shagreen. It's small. It was something I'd wanted for my house. ALL TIME BEST SELLER? BW: I have no idea. The Ansel chair in Tibetan wool has been great. We try to have something that's stylish and fun every season, but it's exciting when those items click. That chair became one of the most popular chairs on Pinterest. MG: You mean more stylish and more fun. Everything we do is stylish and fun. B ob Williams and Mitchell Gold blew into town last month to celebrate their namesake furniture company's 25th anniversary. There's a lot to party over: During the past two- plus decades, they've expanded across the United States, Europe, Asia, South America, and Australia. They sold their company and bought it back. They've written books (from Crisis: 40 Stories of Growing up Gay in America to the latest, Who We Are). Loved as much for their human-rights advocacy as their contemporary furniture, MGBW, as they are often referred to, tell it like it is. Rebecca Sherman DO ALL THE DESIGNS COME OUT OF YOUR HEAD? BW: I'm the vice president of design, so yes. MG: Bob's head's not that big. BW: True. I have six other people helping me in the design department, so it's collaboration. BRASS IS EVERYWHERE THIS SEASON, SO WHAT'S UP WITH ALL THE SILVER? BW: It's our silver anniversary. We did silver leather and silver metals. We do a lot of gray, and silver goes well with that. People love it. MG: We have lots of brass this season, too. BW: Because of the EPA, it's been hard to find people who know how to do brass well. We finally found a source. YOUR FAVORITE PIECE IN THE NEW COLLECTION? BW: The director's chair. I've wanted to do it for a couple of years, but I couldn't figure out the nuances. I was someplace recently and saw how the two pieces were welded together, and that solved the last problem. MG: The wing chair. I have it in taupe flannel at home. It's perfect for sitting with a computer on my lap, watching TV and doing emails. WHAT DO YOU WEAR? MGBW: Black! BW: We wear a lot of suits now. Our collection is a little dressier, so we're dressier too. MG: You have to understand, 20 years ago at High Point, the big furniture market, T wenty-five years ago, when Gail Taylor's children were young, she started staging room vignettes for builders' homes. Friends' interiors followed. Flash forward: Taylor has gone retail, with a 10,000-square-foot home furnishings emporium dubbed Taylor & Taylor Designs. The other half of the moniker is her daughter, Erin Taylor Maggi; designers Jeanne Durr and Lauren Terrizzi complete the decor team. The store is divided between a handsome showroom (once a '50s-/'60s-era ranch home, transformed into a Mecca for contemporary decoration in keeping with T & T's clean-lined aesthetic) and an intriguing mix of antique smalls. The vibe melds new collections from Hancock & Moore, Hickory White, Lillian August, Hickory Chair and Noir with objects perfumed with time: 19th-century leather-bound volumes; artisan-made creations such as Hollywood Regency-inspired gilded metal sculptures of flora by New Orleans craftsman Tommy Mitchell; religious artifacts, including statues of saints and apostles with great presence; hand-carved 18th- and 19th-century Indian architectural fragments; an imposing Indonesian Buddha; and even a suite of screen-prints of Barbie looks from the 1960s, framed under acrylic boxes, devoid of kitsch and utterly glamorous. Stay tuned for a big reveal this winter of the Calvin Klein Curator Gallery Collection — this shop will be Klein's only showroom in the south. Catherine D. Anspon PARTY LIKE IT'S 1989 FROM RANCH HOUSE TO DESIGNER SHOWCASE Taylor & Taylor Designs 1426 Antoine Dr. 713.977.2715 PHOTOS MAX BURKHALTER Taylor & Taylor Designs Gail Taylor, Jeanne Durr and Lauren Terrizzi Bob Williams and Mitchell Gold D esigner Michelle Nussbaumer's first collection of tableware is an updated spin on traditional Mexican handicrafts that have existed for centuries. She teamed up with longtime friend Charlie Hall — who owns a factory in San Miguel de Allende that employs handicapped artisans (he gives TED talks on the subject) — to create the terra-cotta dishes and serving ware, silverware and glasses that are available exclusively at her store, Ceylon et Cie in Dallas. The hand-thrown dishes are "a whimsical, modern take on a 17th-century Delft plate I owned," she says, but hers are lead-free and dishwasher safe. Her hand-blown Milagro glasses, inspired by Mexican designs from the '20s and '30s, are available in aqua, cobalt and clear and are etched with traditional Mexican symbols such as the sun, agave plant, rooster and bleeding heart. (More than half the artisans are so handicapped they must etch with their feet, Nussbaumer says.) Her Concha silverware — made in Tosca, where the finest Mexican silver is mined and produced — is based on a classic concha belt. "These artists have been doing their thing for hundreds of years," she says. "They've made the same thing generation after generation. I took what they do and changed it up — they loved it. That's the great thing about working in Mexico, whether you're making a house or a spoon: They never say 'can't.' They always say, 'Let's try it.' They have hearts of true artists." $18 to $65, at Ceylon et Cie, 319 Dragon St., Dallas, 214.742.7632, Rebecca Sherman DISHING FOR A CAUSE ANN STRATTON Michelle Nussbaumer The MGBW director's chair Delaney console buffet

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