Last Thursday, May 17, I had the great fortune of being invited to a spectacular event at the Glasshouse at Chelsea Arts Tower. The Lowes Designer Challenge (on Twitter #LowesChallenge) featured three celebrity designers who showcased patio designs inspired by their own imaginations, and completed with beautiful materials, furniture and accessories purchasable at Lowe’s.
Marcela Valladolid, Elaine Griffin and Danny Seo presented their unique designs on the 21st floor of the majestic crystal tower on 25th street, and they were breathtaking.
The Lowe’s Designer Challenge event was the kickoff to the competition which begins today on Facebook. (https://www.facebook.com/lowes/app_203048076483282) Visitors to the site can check out the three designs for themselves, and vote for their favorite. Lowe’s will donate $25,000 to each designer’s charity just for participating, and the designer with the most votes (on June 5) will receive an additional $25,000.
Personally, I loved, loved, LOVED all three designs, each for a very different reason.
Marcela added a tranquil yet zesty touch to both her design, and to the food which she catered. She is every bit as beautiful, talented and charming in person, as she is on TV.
Her inspiration for her colorful design was Baja California, enhanced by some strong Mexican influences. Who could blame her. Mexico es lindo y querido!
Marcela successfullycombined blues, aquas and terra cottas in her garden-side dining room, using colorful Mexican-style ceramics both as flatware and flower pots. Everyone loved the way she planted tiny cacti and other succulents in tiny teacups which made the table setting even more whimsical.
Marcela’s charity of choice is The Olivewood Gardens.
Elaine Griffin’s palette was my favorite. (Shh… don’t tell anyone.) Despite the fact that Marcela’s ceramics and aesthetics tugged at my greater cultural heritage, Elaine’s style matched my own more closely.
Perhaps the glow of the sunset over the Hudson which poured over the top of the patio was what sealed it for me with a halo effect, but the combination of blues and greens, classic design and abstract prints, brought to mind the Monet paintings which reside at her patio’s Parisian namesake. It was a delicate, romantic and private enclosure, dedicated to a restful appreciation of nature.
Elaine Griffin’s design was entitled L’Orangerie NYC and her charity of choice is The Boys & Girls Club of Kips Bay.
Danny brought the sleekest lines to the show, and I do mean show, as his patio was transformed into an outdoor cinema.
Although this would not be my choice for my own suburban backyard… I have a secret for you!! One week before this event, my husband purchased two pallets of the very same Lowe´s pavers that Danny used in his design! Don’t believe me? See for yourself!
My sensibilities might be a bit different, but my appreciation for design and great quality is the same. Unfortunately an outdoor rug won’t work in my backyard, but these tiles are going to make it look tremendous!
So what did Danny do to his urban chic patio? He made it a place to relax and take in a flick. Wine combined with candy necklaces, just like his couches and oriental inspired end tables make for a magical night under exposed bulbs and stars.
Oops! Did you drop some popcorn on the floor? No worries the squirrels – or pigeons – will take care of that!
Danny’s charity of choice is Yum-O, and there to support him was Kelly Killoren Bensimon of Real Housewives of New York fame. She is also as beautiful in person as she is on the flat screen.
So… now it’s your turn. Whose design do you like the best? Remember to visit Lowe’s Facebook page and vote there. It’s for charity!
I was not compensated in any way for writing this post, although the food was delish… and I may have had a drink, or two. Cheers!