Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Products for the Great Outdoors

The portable Garden (Egg) chair, designed in 1968 for indoor and outdoor use by Hungarian-German, designer Peter Ghyczy, who lives in the Netherlands, opens and closes like a clam shell, rendering it completely waterproof. Both the upholstered seat and the plastic shell are available in a wide variety of mix-and-match colors. Price about $3,000, shipping not included. For more information, visit; to purchase, contact Rizz at or +31 33 247 77 00.

Sina Pearson’s new Global Village line of indoor/outdoor fabrics, made of 100% solution-dyed Bella-Dura® olefin fibers, won’t fade in the sun or mildew in the rain. The fibers are a byproduct of the petroleum refining process, using material that would otherwise be incinerated. Available for $78 to $112 per yard in four patterns of stripes and florals in 20 complementary colorways — from earth colors to muted  bright reds and yellows — through design professionals and selected showrooms. For more information, visit

The Obus light is an amazingly simple and versatile source of illumination for both indoors and out. Designed by Peter Stathis of Virtual Studio, San Francisco, for the lighting company Joby, the translucent acrylic glass oval, fitted with an LED bulb rated to last 40,000 hours, can be turned on or off while charging on a small stand. Grabbing it by its comfortably indented sides, its bright light beaming from the bottom, you can use it as a flashlight to find your way to your outdoor dining table. You can then place it on the table to provide soft illumination for up to 25 hours on a single charge of its lithium ion battery. Available for $250 starting in August from

Innit, a Mexican company founded by a Canadian ex-pat, makes minimalist hot-weather chairs out of vinyl cord strung on powder-coated steel frames. Offered in several bowl-like shapes, the chairs draws on a 1940s-era design, conceived, legend has it, by a French tourist who, tired of melting in the Mexican heat on solid chairs, noticed the airiness of the traditional rope hammocks. The chairs’ vinyl is strung using an ancient Mayan hammock weaving technique. The Acapulco (right), Innit (left) and Concha are available in a wide range of colors for $495; a child’s version of the Acapulco is $350.
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The press-molded steel Emu Pattern outdoor collection, designed by Arik Levy for Coalesse, includes durable chairs, benches and tables, with a cut-out hexagonal pattern ideal for hot weather. Available in five textured matte colors. Chairs and benches are $744; round table, $599; square table, $849. For retailers, visit

If your summer barbecue spot is a rooftop terrace or an apartment balcony, Black+Blum’s new terra-cotta Hot-Pot BBQ, with a 37-inch diameter, will be perfect. Its lid does double duty as a planter, so you can grow the herbs for your grilled dishes, too. Available at for $124.

Brothers Doug and Gene Meyer have traveled the world and distilled the colors, patterns, flora and atmospheres they encountered into a decidedly retro look for their new collection of outdoor fabrics and cushions. The solution-dyed acrylic Link Outdoor Fabric collection includes nine patterns, with coordinating solids and fringe trims. Square throw pillows range in price from $120 to $170; custom chair cushions are also available. For moreinformation, visit

Tip Ton is a colorful polypropylene chair for indoor or outdoor use. Designed for comfort by the British firm of Barber Ogersby for Vitra, it features angled skids that rock forward and stay in place, so you can lean forward to straighten your spine and keep your back comfortable. The stackable Tip Ton comes in eight bright colors and is cast from a single mold, without hardware, so it is 100% recyclable. Available starting in August for $315 at Vitra stores in New York and Los Angeles, as well as select retailers. For information, visit

Crate and Barrel introduced the Finnish company Marimekko’s silk-screened fabrics to their Chicago housewares store in 1966, helping to popularize the bright, bold patterns that came to epitomize an era. Building on a resurgence of interest in the company’s designs, Crate and Barrel has introduced a Marimekko Shop both online and at its brick-and-mortar stores: the first two are in New York with more to follow. Marimekko’s gay designs enliven a wide range of products, from pillows and bed linens to raincoats, kitchenware and shade umbrellas. The Madison umbrella in a yellow-and-white floral design from 1977, by groundbreaking designer Maija Isola, retails for $179 in a 6-foot-round version and $289 for 9-foot-round. For retail locations or to purchase online, visit

Richard Schultz, designer of the eponymous classic 1966 outdoor furniture collection, has released the new Mateo collection. The chairs, framed in extruded aluminum in clear, anodized dark bronze or 16 powder coat colors, have a stretchy elastomeric mesh seat available in five colors in a striped weave, made by alternating between transparent and opaque mesh. The collection includes coffee and dining tables, dining and lounge chairs and chaises lounges. For information on dealers, visit

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