Last week I was in NYC for the Media Launch of DXV by American Standard. We stayed at the Bryant Park Hotel which was originally the head office of American Standard which was a really great full circle experience.
The entire team from design to marketing to set design to PR - I don't quite know how to describe them without seeming to blow proverbial smoke but truly the entire team is stupendous. Not once were we greeted with a not possible everything was enthusiastically cheered on and complete creativity encouraged. It was like being on a Bob the Builer Loop - "Yes We Can!" The results really speak to this attitude which after meeting the CEO Jay Gould, is definitely a top down business model.
I haven't really given you the background on how this all came to be though which I should because it's a testament to social media and the community that has evolved as a result of twitter. I've known Veronika Miller of Modenus and Blogtour Inc for over three years now. Through Veronika, I was introduced to Nora DePalma who does that PR for American Standard. I've gotten to know both of these fabulous ladies thanks to the Blogtours I've been on and those I've crashed and through KBIS. We thank Twitter regularly for the opportunity to know each other and become friends and now co-conspirators in something truly fabulous.
Mid November we received an email from Veronika that was a bit cryptic but asked if we'd be interested in a fabulous collaboration opportunity. I said yes before reading the fine print. Given the players I knew to be involved, I knew that this was something I wanted to be a part of - without a second's hesitation. Once we got the "dirt" we had about two weeks to hand in our concept and our "shopping list" so to speak. I knew I wanted to work with Walker Zanger's Jet Set from the get go and was thrilled when they said yes as quickly as I did. The same goes for Zack Taylor at Wesley Hall, Marcia & Paul Priven of Zia Priven, Robert Allen, Arteriors and Global Views. All of these vendors with their generosity and willingness to collaborate made this project what it is and I am indebted to all of them.
After our concepts were handed in, including CAD/Sketch Up renderings we began working with Earl Kendall's studio out of Minneapolis. We coordinated back and forth over the design elements, finishes and the styling. I've already mentioned their genius and when I look at my sketches, renderings and then the finished product - GOOD SWEET JESUS THEY NAILED IT! I mean it's incredible really. It's wonderful to have your vision understood so completely and celebrated. It's why I fight tirelessly for creatives and the sanctity of their work. It MUST be credited because it's born out of them and it often takes others pouring their own heart and soul into the execution of the vision. It DOES take a village. The design was built about a month after it was conceived. Impressive. We then flew to Minneapolis to style and give our blessing on the translation before it was shot and videoed into what it has become. My day on set was just that, a day. The set itself was built in two halves so that it could be shot properly. Now you think that there is an abundance of tile in my 15ft x 20 ft bathroom but it was carefully constructed so that certain shots had flow but the tile itself is actually reflected thanks to Photoshop and the single sink was moved from side to side, photographed then joined together in post production. I mean it's truly brilliant.
We decided to shoot my bathroom as a nighttime shot because let's be honest, we often use our bathroom in the dark more than we do in the brilliant sunshine. Those of us who live in the north for SURE spend a lot of time using a darkened bathroom with reduced sunlight opportunities. Most bathrooms are shot with bright sunny light flowing in but I thought it would be great to see a moody, sexy bathroom which is no less stunning without the natural light. Heck I just designed my own bathroom to be moody and light and airy thanks to this project.
We were sent final proof shots - mine arrived while I was in Vegas for #BlogtourVegas and I couldn't contain my squeals of delight. It was getting embarrassing because I couldn't share. People knew something was up. We were all about to burst but we knew that the end of February would provide the release of all this built up excitement. A relatively short design period from start to finish - most of our projects are longer than that and so fulfilling. I want to do more. I am obsessed with ideas of how to improve and take things to the next level.
The line will continue to grow over the next few months but over the next little bit I will be sharing some of the individual pieces with you. They are working on some exciting "Meredith Approved" finishes that will be coming out sooner rather than later. They talk in three year plans. I am impatient.