The OS Space

seat of the week

triangle part two

triangle part one

ON TRIANGLES: An installation of 153 Triangles that transition from wall to bench to chair to triangle presented by the OS Space.

The OS Space is a Nigerian based firm that designs interiors, furniture and public space. Their experiential exhibitions fuse the flexibility of the human body with the versatility of the spaces we occupy. Pictured above is an installation of 153 multipurpose triangles.

Shout out to the BAD Guild for creating a place where black artists and designers can be found, showcased and celebrated. We appreciate you.


Click the photos to learn more about OS Space. See other seats that have been featured here.

The Turandot Bench

Seat of the Week

Turandot Bench

Turandot Bench by Mauro Varotti.

The bench is a formal piece of furniture that’s often found in transient spaces. The Turandot design beautifully blends this formality with playfulness and invites you to sit a little longer. Yes, it’s backless, so you’re encouraged to stay erect and alert while sitting. But the seat also curls in at the ends like a cradle, offering a warm embrace. The deep colors and funky shapes might remind you of a wooden puzzle or kid’s block set, giving your mind and eyes something to play with while you converse.


Click the photo to learn more. See other seats that have been featured here.

on letting tasks linger

This strategy for fighting procrastination aims particularly at the tasks we just can’t seem to start. Following through to completion is another challenge. But as they say, showing up is half the battle.

to do list copy

What started as tiny as a bullet point on your to do list has grown into a slobbering, snarling monster after two months of neglect. It could be going to the DMV, filling out paper work, returning phone calls, reworking a budget or a cleaning out a closet.

Why do we avoid doing the tasks we once deemed as necessary or beneficial enough to put on a list? There are countless reasons. But in short, something about the task intimidates us. Every time I think about registering a new car, I imagine gathering countless documents that may or may not need notarization and then sitting in a cold, stale room for a whole day. The thought makes me roll my eyes and push the task to a different corner of my mind so I can think other, less overwhelming thoughts. In that case, it’s the amount of effort I’m intimidated by.

If the intimidation of a item to do is a balloon, we must deflate the balloon just enough for us to feel comfortable taking the first step. The intimidation need not be popped completely, but just enough so that we don’t feel it has control of us.

The opportunity for intimidation deflation lies in the very moment we think about the task we’re avoiding. Instead of contemplating on the amount of effort required to complete the task, we should think only about the very first step. We need not even take that first step, only imagine it. The goal of this exercise is not to complete the task or even to start it, but to deflate the intimidation just enough so that we no longer feel controlled by it. If the task at hand is to register a new car, instead of feeling overwhelmed about all that needs happen, I can imagine myself taking just the first step: getting online and determining which documents are needed for registration. I don’t even have to commit to taking action. I’m simply considering what would need to happen first if I was ready to start the task. Something magical happens in this moment: I realize that the first step isn’t so bad. I gain a bit of confidence. I begin to feel like I’m in control, so much so that I just might take action. And once that first step is taken, I’ll gain momentum. I’ll likely feel motivated to push further than step one.

But what if the very first step is just that damn dreadful? What if the first step of registering the car is going to the court and learning that I have to pay $2000 worth of traffic and parking tickets before I can even get my license reinstated? In that case, I would redirect my attention from the very first step and look further into the future. What will accomplishing this task enable me to do down the line? What is the reason I put the item on the to-do list in the first place? Maybe reinstating my license and registering my car means I can sign up to drive for Lyft, start saving at a faster rate and finally be able to invest in my business. The possibility of a greater freedom then, is what will inspire me to get started.

Remember, this is about the getting starting. The goal here is simply to deflate intimidation just enough to feel confident about getting one step closer to where we want to be.

 

can i come over?

the guest-host relationship

conoid

Conoid Studio – Nakashima Headquarters – New Hope, CT

As hosts, we take on the challenge of transforming the privacy of our home into a shared intimate experience with our guests. They dip into our private life, but they don’t go all the way in. There are still parts of our home that we keep out of sight when we have company. And that’s for everybody’s comfort. So as hosts, we’ve committed to making our guests feel comfortable about penetrating our privacy.

As guests, we should be mutually invested. We should want for our host to feel just at home as they always do. This interplay can be either seamless or disastrous. The key is to simply observe. Take note of what’s happening around you and make adjustments if needed.

AS A GUEST
  • Observe any obvious rules. Many people have little micro systems that help along the operation that is the home. should you take your shoes off? if you’re unsure just ask.
  • Offer your help. offer to clear the table, wash the dishes, etc. Your host may decline. But they also may be in need of a hand.
  • Don’t be dirty. Throw away your candy wrappers and take your cups to the sink.
  • Bonus: Bring a gift. bring a bottle of wine, a side dish, a dessert, a house plant, some flowers, something for the kitchen. When it comes to housewarming gifts A good rule of thumb is to make it more about the host than the house. Bring something that will make the host feel good.
AS A HOST

It takes a little bit more prep to be a host than it does a guest. As hosts, we assume the role of provider. We should provide our guests with what they need to be comfortable. Even if we expect them to get their own water, they should have enough information or clues) to be able to do so.

Not everyone we bring into our home gets a grand tour and a peak into the the quieter more intimate rooms. Many guests sit with us in the front room, the living room, the kitchen or in a combination of these areas. We can ensure they stay there with subtle environmental cues such as closed doors, rooms dividers, etc. If the house is a place for roaming then make that known. Leave little lights on in rooms with open doors.

In the public areas, be sure to have these elements:

  • Seating: Company shouldn’t have to guess or hesitate when it’s time to sit. Make it so they know exactly where to take a seat and make sure that seat is comfortable. Aching muscles from uneasy chairs is not conducive to good conversation. Five is a safe number. At any moment, there should be seating for at least five people. Maybe you have a three person couch and a love seat. Or bar stools and a kitchen table. The number obviously increases if you’re expecting more guests. And they might not automatically want a seat, but they should know the option is there.
  • Surface Space: Whether someone is expected to sit with you all day or drops in for a micro visit, There should be a clear surface in an obvious location for them to set a phone, a bag, a drink, or anything they need to set down for the sake of free hands.
  • A Clean kitchen: Be sure to have available dishes, wiped down surfaces, swept floors and even some snacks or drinks.
    • Empty Trashcan/Empty Sink: Empty really means not overflowing. A couple cups in the sink is no big deal. A half full trash can is no big deal. But having space for more is important. Throwing away trash or setting dishes in the sink shouldn’t feel or look like a game of Jenga.

In the private spaces, for overnight guests, be sure to have these elements.

  • Clean Sheets: Replace sheets, pillow cases and blankets where your guests are sleeping. No one wants to sleep in anyone else’s body dust.
  • A Clean Bathroom: Washcloths, hand towels, bath towels, tub and toilet. Clean it all. There should again be no guess work when it’s time for company to use the bathroom. And there should be no disgust either.
  • Surface Space: Just like in the living room, guests will need a place to put their personals.

It’s always nice to feel at ease in someone else’s house or to have successfully created a home-like experience for your company, But it’s not only about making an impression. It’s about showing your guest or your host that you care about their comfort and that you appreciate what they do.

Motility

seat of the week

Hydravion Berger by Jacques-Emile Ruhlmann

A passage from Home: A Short History of an Idea by Witold Rybczynski

“A well designed easy chair must accommodate not only relaxed sitting, but also having  a drink, reading, conversation, bouncing babies on the knee, dozing, and so on. It must permit the sitter to shift about and adopt a variety of positions. This changing of postures has a social function—so-called body language. It should be possible to lean forward (to express concern) or to recline backward (to indicate pensiveness); one should be able to sit primly (to show respect) or to lounge (to communicate informality or even disrespect). The ability to change positions also has an important physical function. The human body is not designed to stay in one position for extended periods; prolonged immobility adversely affects body tissues, muscles, and joints. Changes of position—crossing the legs, tucking one, or both, up under the body, even hanging a leg over the armrest—shift the weight from one part of the body to another, relieve the pressure and stress, and relax different muscle groups. Even the most perfectly designed seat will soon feel uncomfortable if such movement is restricted—as all airline passengers well know. Engineers call this tendency of the body to change positions motility.”

seat of the week

This seat represents the times we feel like we’re caught under a rain cloud, getting poured on, beat down by the outside world or even by the inside self. It can be challenging to get through the storm. We keep our heads down. Our clothes are wet so we feel heavy. We’re completely consumed by how cold and droopy and sloppy we feel.

Sometimes, like a tree, we can welcome the storm and the growth it invites. Other times, what we experience is a true tragedy that we cannot change. And that’s not something we should run from or fight. Tragedy and loss are natural parts of the human experience, and if we don’t allow ourselves to feel those lows, then we’re stopping up our human flow. We’re creating blockage.

Be reminded that the storm passes. Afterwards, we find a new freshness: the air is calm; the trees are extra green. We’ve dried off or changed clothes so we feel lighter. We feel a sense of perseverance and remember that the water is nothing to be afraid of.


See others that have been featured here.

feeling homeless at home

Sometimes we find ourselves in living situations that don’t support our full expression and growth. Sometimes the only home we know is inside of us. Maybe we don’t know home at all and it sounds like some distant far off place. It could be due to financial strain, a relationship outgrown, a poor decision of our own or conditions beyond our control.

How can we stay alive in spaces that drain or suppress us?

We know that as adults, we can choose what we want for our lives. We get to create the living conditions we need to grow. But often we believe ourselves to be stuck and it’s not as easy sounding as just leaving or starting new.

If you’re uncomfortable at home, carve out a space that’s yours alone. If it’s a room of your own, arrange it so that it feels right for you. Put things you like looking at on display. Rearrange the displays regularly to freshen the energy.

If the whole house is shared, is there a shelf or a drawer you can keep trinkets and pictures?

Maybe the space you make your own is in a notebook or a sketch book, a place you can be honest or a place to escape to.

These private spaces will carry the energy you infuse into them. Maybe you infuse comfort or calm or love.

Visit your private space to adjust your mood when needed. Reflect on how the space makes you feel and carry that with you. Tap into it when you need to and remember no one can take it from you. That is what home feels like.

Ava Chair by Lazar

Seat of the Week

ava chair part two

The Ava Chair by Lazar is for talking and tv. It might not strike you as a long term chair but could certainly last a whole movie; something light like a comedy. White in the room would bring the chair to the foreground. Wood surfaces would stabilize the orange and make for softer transitions. Either way, as the star of the show or as background support, the Ava chair holds its own.

See others that have been featured here.


spatial therapy

 

When we mindfully select what we bring home and how it’s arranged, we’re training our house to feel a certain way. We create a clear crisp connection between our energy, and that of the house.  When we mindlessly bring whatever home and then throw it wherever, the energy of the house is a blur. It’s not shaped to fit us.

When our home’s energy is tailored and specific, it becomes medicine; a place to rest, restore and prepare for life’s next activity. The challenge then, is to sustain this energy while we maneuver through the world. The longer we’re away, the more faint our charge becomes. But the more we practice, the better we can hold it. As we carry this mindful energy in life, we remain grounded and move consciously. This is spatial therapy.