Sunday, May 30, 2010

Get Creative and Unique with Furniture in Chicago

Designing your home’s decor can sometimes be a daunting task. You want to create a place of style. You want to create a setting that illustrates your creativity and has the ability to make you guests say “wow.” However, at the same time, you want the furnishings to be functional. You do not want to create a museum; you are creating a living space. In essence, the home needs to be a place that is eye pleasing, but at the same time allows a person to comfortably live and grow.

In Chicago, many retailers specialize in providing just that. From modern to traditional, Chicago furniture stores try to provide something that will meet just about everyone’s taste. Large spaces that incorporate modern or contemporary pieces will focus on trying to create a friendly open and inviting tone. On the reverse side, more traditional rooms will want to focus on small details rather than solely on furnishings, this will ensure that you create a room that is not cluttered.

Of course, when designing a room in the city, the focus should not only be on Chicago furniture. Vases, pictures, art murals are welcome additions to just about any room’s décor. The key is to try to find pieces that complement one another. Loud patterns, colors, or styles that clash, just distract from the overall appeal of the room, creating a setting of chaos and disorder.

Sure, the weather in the city can get bad sometimes; however, this does not mean that furniture in Chicago is solely regulated to indoor use. If you have an open out door space, use it, even if it is just a small patio or fire escape. You will be surprised at how adding a piece of furniture or two to an outdoor area will encourage you to go outside. Let us be honest, sure the winter may be bad in Chicago, but there really is nothing like a nice Chicago summer afternoon. Therefore, decorate that outdoor space and use it.

In addition, just because it is a big city does not mean that every store is expensive. There is a wide variety of furniture stores in Chicago, ranging from the relatively cheap to the exotic and expensive. The key is to shop around. Look at multiple stores. There is probably not just one store that will fit your tastes and your budget. Mix it up. In fact, if you truly shop around, you will be sure to create a look and design that is one hundred percent unique and creative.

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Friday, May 28, 2010

Chicago Furniture Offers Many Styles

There are many stores, warehouses and boutiques that offer Chicago furniture both in the city and on the outskirts. Those who have access to the area may find many types of furniture in Chicago furniture stores to fit into their home’s interior design schemes. The furniture in Chicago that is offered from these stores and manufacturers is known for its cutting edge design and for the quality materials it is constructed with.

Some of the furniture stores in Chicago are also known for their long history. There are many stores that have been established in the city for many years and are well known for their beautiful and quality pieces. Some of these furniture stores may have been passed down in a family for generations and may have even stayed in the same location in Chicago for years. While the designs and showrooms of these Chicago furniture stores may have changed a lot over these many years, the quality and popularity of the stores have not changed with Chicago residents.

Since there are multiple stores in the Chicago area, residents that are looking to remodel or redesign a home will have a lot of choices on their new purchases. Chicago furniture stores have adapted to the competitive nature of business in the city by offering multiple styles of furniture in the same showroom. Many of these furniture stores are so large, they have taken over warehouse sized spaces in the city in order to display many types of furniture in their large showrooms. These showrooms are important for clients to see the display of the furniture surrounded by accessories for the room such as rugs and lighting. The set up of a showroom allows a consumer to investigate the quality and design of Chicago furniture before purchasing it. It also allows a consumer to see his or her options with an entire set of furniture.

Furniture stores in Chicago can offer some of the most cutting edge designs and contemporary furniture on the market today. There are also many stores that specialize in antique or classically styled furniture that can become a beautiful addition to a living, family or dining room. No matter what type of furniture a consumer is looking for, he or she should be able to find some of the most unique pieces for his or her home in Chicago furniture stores. A variety of designs make shopping for furniture in the city a fun and easy task.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Friday, May 14, 2010

Chicago Furniture Designs

Chicago residents that are looking to redecorate or furnish a home have many resources to purchase Chicago furniture. When looking for furniture in Chicago, there are many choices for homeowners including modern, antique and classic style furniture. Since there are a plethora of furniture stores in Chicago, the residents of the city have many places to shop for specific pieces to accent a room. A large city such as Chicago has much to offer for those who are looking to completely redesign the interior of a home.

With so many Chicago furniture stores, these stores know they need to compete for business. In order to draw more clients and business, these stores may offer incentives such as sales, discounts or free delivery. Many furniture stores in Chicago may also offer many different types of furniture to please different consumers’ tastes. The showrooms in these stores may be divided by modern furniture or more classic style furniture. Chicago furniture may also be offered in many colors and materials. Chicago furniture stores may display furniture that is designed with mixed media. These pieces combine different materials, such as leather, cloth or metal. Some of these pieces may offer metal or wood legs or support with a leather or cloth cushion. These mixed media pieces have become a modern and well recognized accent for many living rooms because of their interesting design.

There are many furniture stores in Chicago that offer large and intricate showrooms to display their many styles and sets of furniture. This can make it much easier to buy Chicago furniture because a consumer can see the entire set together and decide which pieces would work in their own home. Chicago is home to many talented furniture and interior designers so there is no shortage of spectacular and beautifully crafted furniture in Chicago. The city also offers many antique and used furniture stores to assist those who are looking for a special and unique piece for a home. While Chicago furniture stores may have a lot to offer their consumers, the local paper or local garage sales in the Chicago area can also be a great place to find artistic and one-of-a-kind pieces of furniture. Those living in the city can take advantage of the many furniture stores in Chicago because they offer a wide variety of designer pieces. Chicago furniture stores are also competitive and can offer discounts and large showrooms for the convenience of clients.

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Monday, May 10, 2010

Chicago Art, Chicago Artist, Julie Tomaso

Julie Tomaso is one of the independent contributors of our Chicago art and Chicago gallery blog. Here follows her Bio and some of her art work.

Julie Tomaso's contact information is available at the end of the post.

Artist/Bio 2010

If you look at my work, you will discover what my thoughts are. I think in terms of color and color is what I see when I look at the world. I try to capture the stillness of the landscape. I imagine the “castles in the air”. My journey is one of solitude, an emotional peaceful feeling. If the viewer can sense my experience and actually ”go” to that particular place, then I have done my job well.

The major influences for my art have been the life & work of Dale Chihuly, Jim Dine, Andy Warhol, Joan Mitchell, Wolf Kahn, Georgia O’Keefe, Henry Moore, Mark Rothko, Jackson Pollock, Willem De Kooning, Pierre Bonnard, Pablo Picasso, Edvard Munch, Vincent Van Gogh and Paul Cezanne.

I began painting in my senior year of high school. I received an associate’s degree from Oakton Community College and studied art under Robert Stanley. When I turned forty, I went back to school to pursue my art degree. I attended McHenry County College and studied under Lynn Lowrie and Mark Arctander. I received my B.A. in Art from Columbia College in Crystal Lake, IL and studied under Alice White and Judith Nahill. I also took numerous workshops with Rodger Bechtold (Old Courthouse Studio in Woodstock, IL). I have been in countless local & national art shows and my work is at the McHenry County Courthouse, Meto-Grafics, Inc., and in many private collections.

I live in Woodstock, IL with my husband Lou and our chocolate lab, Max. We have two teenage boys whom are almost grown. I enjoy working with animals and volunteer at our local animal shelter. I also am working towards my second degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do under Grand Master Hyo Chul Chung at Chung’s Martial Arts in Crystal Lake, IL.

“It’s not about painting life; it’s about bringing painting to life.” - Pierre Bonnard

Title: Touch of Blue
Size: 18' x 24"
Price: $ 225.00

Title: Rock Formation
Size: 30" x 36"
Price: $620.00

Title: Roadtrip #3
Size: 24" x 36"
Price: $340.00

Title: Roadtrip, NC #2
Size: 24" x 36"
Price: $340.00

Title: Badlands #3
Size: 24" x 36"
Price: $365.00

Julie Tomaso
Fine Artist

Studio #309 . Lakeside Legacy Arts Park . 401 Country Club Road . Crystal Lake, IL . 60014 . 815.337.9312 . cell 815.715.5168 .

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Thursday, May 6, 2010

Chicago Art: Sarah N. Hahne

We posted some of Sarah Hahne's work previously. Here is some brief introduction of the Chicago artist and more of her work. Follow us on more about Chicago art.


Selected Exhibitions

- Schaumburg Prairie Center for the Arts, upcoming group show June 2010
- SmallE/r Works, Old Courthouse Art Center, Woodstock, IL October 2009
- E/mErsion Show, Sage Gallery, Crystal Lake, IL March 2008
- 1 Nite Stand Show, Starline Gallery, Harvard, IL October 2007
- Woman Made Gallery, Chicago, Abstract & Geometric Show, September 2007
- Old Courthouse Art Center, Ornamental Earth Show, June 2007 invitational
- Women’s Works 2007, juried by Judy Chicago
- A History of Number, one-person exhibit , Woodstock Opera House, August 2004
- Women Made Gallery, Chicago, Il, Her Mark 2004, juried annual date book
- Triangle Art Gallery, Chicago, juried one-person exhibit, A History of Color, May 2003
- Gallery on Lake, The Chicago Solution Show, juried by Ed Paschke, January 2003
- Women’s Works 2003, recipient Gala Night People’s Choice Award
- Women’s Works 2001, 2002, 2004, 2005, 2008
- Spring Street Gallery, Galena, IL, group exhibit August 2002 and 2003.
- A History of Color, one-person exhibit, Woodstock Opera House, August 2002
- After 9/11, Old Courthouse Art Center, Woodstock, IL January 2002.
- Contemporary Art Workshop, Selected work, Chicago, 1988
- Rizzoli Gallery, Water Tower Place, Chicago, one-person - exhibit, Lamina, October 1987
- Evanston Art Center, faculty exhibit, summer 1987
- School of the Art Institute of Chicago Gallery, 2x2 Show, 1985
- Wright Art Center, Beloit, Wisconsin, one-person exhibit, May 1980


- School of the Art Institute of Chicago, studio course work, Professional teacher’s certification, 1982-1987
- Beloit College, Beloit, Wisconsin/ B.A. Printmaking, 1976-1980
- Leo Marchutz School of Painting and Drawing, Aix-en- Provence, France, summer 1978
- University of Illinois Chicago, Master’s courses in Art History and Education, 1980 - 1982

Artist’s Statement:

As a painter with a background in printmaking I am drawn to using repetitive elements and shapes in my work. I am also drawn to achieving depth through the use of flat pattern and texture. The underlying theme of my work, whether figurative, abstract, or still life is to explore the relationship people have with their environment, both natural and manmade. We have a profound impact on each other and the natural world whether we realize it or not. The impact we have is often positive, but unfortunately, even more often it is negative. Our position is unique. We are solely responsible for the problems we have created and we are solely responsible for the solution.

Sarah Hahne is an independant contributor of our Chicago art and Chicago gallery blog.

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Tuesday, May 4, 2010

My experiences with Chicago Art Galleries

Sarah Hahne

The most interesting places that I have shown art in over the years have been alternative spaces – bookstores, restaurants, old factories, warehouses. I love the look of the more traditional art space – the white, the hush, the expectancy of the venue. There is almost a religious feeling. This feeling of tradition bound, reverent space is most easily seen in the main floor of the new Modern Wing at the Art Institute of Chicago. The white, open, cathedral hush is not marred by sound, as the many visitors voices are muffled by the hugeness of the space. Not only is there no sound, there is no art. You have to go out of the main vast hallway to see the art and when I am there I long to see an organic textile piece, a mobile hanging from the immensely tall ceiling, anything - anything but the hushed austerity - no matter how breathtakingly beautiful it is. Don’t get me wrong I love the space, I want to breathe it in with deep gulps but I don’t want to eat it, if you know what I mean. I love it but the space is not intimate, does not evoke familiarity, does not invite involvement. Often the more traditional art gallery makes me feel the same way. I’m happy to be there, I love the space, but the sometimes only tiniest sense of aloofness keeps me feeling a bit distant from the art. One of the Chicago galleries that I have shown at, Women Made Gallery, is an extraordinary place and does invite the viewer to feel more intimacy with the art, but there is still the slightest touch of a feeling that one should mind their manners and not put one’s elbows on the table, or make loud noises. Despite its intimate space it still has the sense of aloofness traditional galleries and art venues always have.

Not so with the non-traditional art space. One of the spaces I have shown at that fits this category is the Caffé Luna in Crystal Lake, IL. Here the clank of cups and spoons, the smell of chai and toasted bagels invites the viewer to sit and relax, and really enjoy the art. I go often to see what is new on the walls; I sit with a warm chai latte, usually with a friend, and really absorb the art in a more natural, comfortable way. Another great space I have shown at on the edges of Chicagoland is the Starline gallery in Harvard, IL. It was a factory and has been converted to galleries and studios. Although it has the open, cathedral space of an art museum, this is mitigated by the warmth and earthiness of the brick, and the heaviness of the beams that were used to hold large pieces of equipment at one time. I also have shown at the Rizzoli International bookstore that used to be in Water Tower Place, Again despite the bookstore being a quieter space, than say a café, there was still a sense of comfortableness and coziness, an intimacy with the art that is lacking in more traditional spaces. It takes some courage to show are in non-traditional space. Though. I never worried, I was very aware that the paint soaked brushes of various art students were inches away from my art at the Triangle Art gallery in the Old Town Art Center. Art work can get bumped, touched, and even damaged in non- traditional spaces, a risk many artists are not willing to take and understandably so. The sense of aloofness at a traditional art space is saying, in part: don’t touch, take care, this art is special, one of a kind, it is to be admired but from a distance only. I respect that and I agree with that and I also truly do love the austerity, the aloofness of that attitude. But at the same time I love the - oh go ahead and get too close and even with sticky fingers - attitude that non- traditional art venues seem to evoke. The space that my art is hanging in now at Interior Express, this amazing furniture warehouse near Chicago O’Hare, has the huge space of an art museum but only the elbows on the table feel of the non-traditional art space. Despite the vastness of the warehouse, the comfortable look of heavy equipment at rest, the feel that large things are just about to moved, the stacks of items about to be shipped or that have just arrived from parts unknown, the friendly expanse of lined up furniture waiting to make someone’s home more homey, invite those that stop to look at the art to get a bit too close if need be. So come by – take a look – even too close of a look - there is some great art on the wall and some really cool furniture.

Sarah Hahne is a local artist, an independant contributor to our Chicago art and Chicago gallery dicussions.

Above illustration pictures are Sarah Hahne's original art work.

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