PSAW featured product: Shinzi Katoh

Home Design: Using trays for organizing.

Photo ©Liza Cowan. use a tray or charger  to organize a coffee table.
Tray/charger for organizing coffee table. Photo ©Liza Cowan

 

I like to use trays to help my organize my home. It's a little trick I learned when I was designing and maintaining retail spaces. I found them so useful for display, and they made cleaning so much easier. 

If you don't have some trays or platters already in your home there are so many wonderful options available. Of course, you can go look in resale or junk shops or at yard sales. You never know what treasures you'll find. Stores like Home Goods and Pier One are really useful too, as well as craft supply stores. I'm lucky that we have all of these stores in my small city. But you can buy online too. For better or for worse, it has never been easier to be a consumer. I try to be reasonable, really. I gave away 3/4 of my stuff when I moved last year and I'm trying not to collect more stuff. But I'm in the midst of huge organizing projects, so I do indulge in objects that make the process both easy and beautiful. Trays are part of that process. 

There is now a huge trend for what are called "chargers" which are basically big plates. They are popular now for what is being called "tablescaping."   When I bought the charger above at Pier One, the saleslady told me I should use it for candles on my dining room table. I'm not big on candles; fire makes me nervous,  and I have so many more useful and interesting things to display. Nevertheless, I was amused to find that "tablescaping" is now a thing. I think its an overblown name, but the concept is not so bad.

I use my trays and chargers to keep all the little things that I need in any given spot. Above is the wooden charger I found at Pier One, also very inexpensive. I keep an eye out for sales, of course.  This is my living room, and I had a pile of remotes to wrangle. I found the round paper container at Home Goods, for a song. One other box, also Home Goods, houses emery boards, nail clippers and nail polish. TV watching time is great for an impromptu manicure or nail repair. The final box is hand letterpress from Brookfield, holding their note paper, because I often find I need to make a note

Also vital for me, a box of tissues, these designed for Kleenex by Issac Mizrahi (I bought a dozen, just in case they stop making them) and a bottle of hand lotion. And my eyeglasses, which I tend to lose. But of course it could hold whatever it is that you find you need in your living room. 

The beauty - other than the visual appeal - is that I can whisk the tray right off the table for a game of Sorry or Monopoly with my neighbor's kids, or to make room to serve food for a party. 


Tray platter on dining table desk
Melamine tray on dining room table. Photo ©Liza Cowan

 

My dining room table also serves as my downstairs desk. I like to sit here next to the window for all kinds of projects, including paying bills, and some craft projects. But I also eat here, and the tray is so easy to remove if I need the whole table to serve guests. This melamine tray is from Pier One. Melamine trays are so hot right now, and the new technologies that allow for printing surface design make almost any look possible. This one mimics a worn ceramic. You know I'm all about FAKE!™ so I love this. 

For my table/office I like to keep pens and pencils in a chipped, old cup I painted, back when we still had a paint your own pottery place. I miss that! I have a ceramic dog dish with my ever handy Sugru, and my checkbook in the folder I designed from my FAKE!™ line of paintings, this one a Liza Leger. The checkbook holder was made for me by Flashbags. And another box of note paper from Brookflied. I used to sell Brookfield hand letterpressed note cards in my stores, and I'm happy to have several boxes left over. So pretty. Paper clips are in a little plastic box from Amac, which I also used to sell, and have managed to keep a few for my own use. 

The gorgeous lamp was made by one of my favorite local potters, Kileh Friedman. The round platter in the background was made by another favorite  potter, Pam Black, Paradise Pottery. On it are some examples of bowls I've been making with Crayola play clay. I used to do this all the time with my kids when they were little. Now my young neighbors enjoy coming over for craft time.

Liza cowan photo shinzi katoh tray as organizer for office desk
Tray by Shinzi Katoh for desk supplies. Photo @Liza Cowan


 This is in my studio office. The tray is from Shinzi Katoh, whose adorable products I used to sell at Pine Street Art Works and at Small Equals. I was smart enough to save one for myself. This hold several lucite boxes with pencils, pens, scrap paper and of course, more hand lotion. It too, can be swooped up to clear my table for large projects. 

Happy tray- scaping.!!

 

 


LITTLE GLIMPSES INTO THE GALLERY TODAY

Here are some random shots of new and old things we have at PSAW today:

 Psaw art is my weapon
Just in from TMNK, Art Is My Weapon T-Shirts in a variety of sizes.

 Psaw clipboard
Very cool and fun French Script clipboards from Timeworks, Inc. Clock Company. I also carry the American Baseball one. @ $12.75 this will be a great holiday present.

 Psaw magnet frames
Always popular, The Magnet Frame from Canetti. 5x7, these pure acrylic frames open and close like a dream, held by tiny powerful magnets. @ $28. Photos in the frames are by me, Liza Cowan, except the one of two old fashioned girls who are my grandmother Lena Straus Spiegel and her sister Hettie.

 Psaw button and beads
Random button and beads. The Lampwork beads are by Madelyn Erb, Mad Glass Beads.

 Psaw monopoly pieces
Monopoly pieces.

 Psaw fireplace ginny
The cozy new electric fireplace. On top: Tea cup print by Ginny Joyner, real teacup and teapot by Shinzi Katoh, fine art laminated mid 20th Century ads.


RANDOM PICS OF PINE STREET ART WORKS TODAY

 Blog sign 

We write our sign daily. Then the rain washes it away. True ephemera.

It's been a slow week. I'm busy stocking up for the holidays, but meanwhile...ain't nobody shopping much. Rainy day, listening to Rufus Wainwright and the soundtrack of Wicked.  Here are some random shots from the day.

 Blog kornbluh 

Pendants by Marc Kornbluh. TMNK paintings in the background.


 Blog moleskine 

Moleskine journals. Nakki Goranin's American Photobooth. Liza Leger painting.


 Blog card wall 

Card wall. Cards by me, from my ephemera collections. Ever changing.


 Bog typewriter ribbon tins 

Vintage typewriter ribbon tins.

 Blog shinzi in foreground 

Shinzi Katoh in foreground. Then Flashbags, then cards. TMNK paintings on the wall.



LiZakka: Shinzi Katoh

 

Sersld101

LiZakka. That's me (Liza + Zakka) and my  fascination with Zakka:  from the Japanese 'zak-ka' 雑貨 or "many things." Zakka is a fashion and design phenomenon that has spread from Japan throughout Asia. The term refers to everything and anything that improves your home, life and outlook. Generally Zakka is cute, even kitch, with style references to Scandinavian and  French design.

Some day I will show you my Hello Kitty collection from the eighties, but now let's look at Shinzi Katoh, the newest product line at Pine Street Art Works.

 

Yansk174-1

Shinzi Katoh is a Japanese Zakka artist of worldwide acclaim. He is based in Aichi in the central region of Japan where he has his own gallery, shop and museum. Pine Street Art Works is now selling his products. Yay.

 

Wayc213cherry

 

 

Yansk310-1

Can you just see these in your home? So come on by and check them out.

 

Sersph102

Not many stores in the US carry Shinzi Katoh. I had to order them from Japan, which involved a lot of translating from Yen to dollars and complicated transactions re shipping. Luckily for me, the folks at Shinzi Katoh in Japan were able to negotiate in English. So, we'll see how my Vermont customers like them. If they are a hit, they will be a staple here.

 

Yansk931

Serml103