Dwell November/December 2019

Dwell is the unique modern architecture and design magazine for people who believe that good design is an integral part of real life. Get Dwell digital magazine subscription today.

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2 min
making it in america

When I was growing up in Allentown, Pennsylvania, the city was best known for what was no longer there. By the early 1990s, steel and other industries had mostly departed, taking with them the economic stability of a large group of people across the entire region. This now well-known narrative has played out in former manufacturing centers throughout the country. But it is important to remember that in pockets of the United States, the design industry still supports many exceptionally skilled workers. Even in Allentown, you can find a Vitra factory producing chairs by Prouvé and the Bouroullec brothers. Knoll makes Barcelona chairs not far away. And from Los Angeles to Detroit, design has become a major force for revitalizing long-neglected parts of the city. With that in mind, our…

2 min

“As a Catholic, I don’t like to see churches pass into secular use, but this is really good [“Divine Intervention,” September/October]. What a wonderful space!”—John Holecek, via dwell.com Feedback I’ve never before been moved to do the immediate online dreaming I did after seeing the sublime Everyday Scissors by Nicky Shen of Before Breakfast, the equally sublime Rhythmic Serenity Chair by Samson Wang, and the inspired Plump Side Table by Ian Cochran [The Dwell 24, September/October]. The cost of the latter two items set them aside for a rainy day, but my pair of scissors just arrived along with Shen’s Onigiri Pen and magnetic stand. These are perfect tools in every way. STEPHEN MOSKOWITZ, HOUSTON I’m bothered by the near silence around the environmental impact of the homes in Dwell. We should not be…

1 min
dive into dwell+

Subscribe to Dwell+ to explore our archive of award-winning stories from the magazine. Plus, discover exclusive home tours as well as a definitive Sourcebook that lists every product and professional ever featured in our pages. Learn more at dwell.com/subscribe 1. Construction Diary: DIY Yurt in Portland Prompted to move for a job but discouraged by rent prices, a young couple build an airy yurt with a lofted bedroom—and keep a journal about how it all came together. 2. Quirky Design Duo’s New Zealand Offices George & Willy’s signs and display systems are minimalist, functional, and playful. The same goes for their new headquarters in a revamped warehouse. 3. How to Build a Shipping Container Home This practical guide to turning a shipping container into a bona fide dwelling breaks down the main considerations and debunks popular myths. Coming…

2 min
what’s the one detail in your home you can’t help but notice?

Whether good or bad, it’s that one little something that always seems to catch your eye. The black toilet in the powder room—a little creepy for me. @roxicam The single still-functioning heated tile in our mudroom that our cat loves to nap on. @markkthelark The hole in my ceiling—kinda annoying when it rains. @pcimarra In our centuries-old apartment in downtown Copenhagen, there is a crack on the wall from the building’s shifting. I like that it shows the stress of age. @maueyers There’s one spot on the cheap vinyl flooring in my bathroom that resembles the face of the creepy Jigsaw doll from the Saw movies. I can’t unsee it, and it always makes me laugh. @catewaier Floors that dip downward along the perimeter of each room, due to the adobe walls being so heavy they’ve sunk into the earth. @laminar_d Wires…

2 min
cactus power

Lured to Phoenix by the promise of toasty weather and access to the great outdoors, former Montana residents Eric and Sondra McVeigh purchased a home on the outskirts of the city in 2007. “We bought the property for its proximity to hiking—there’s a trailhead two blocks away,” says Eric. On the downside, the house was small, poorly insulated, and in disrepair, so the McVeighs spent the next decade saving up for a major remodel. In 2017 they contacted architect Cavin Costello and interior designer Claire Costello of The Ranch Mine to guide their efforts. The designers suggested keeping the existing foundation but drew up plans for a new, 1,850-square-foot house. Its defining feature is a gabled volume that serves up cactus three ways. Black corrugated metal siding on three sides evokes…

1 min
lisa jones

Founder and CCO Pigeon Toe Ceramics Portland, Oregon “I got into ceramics as a way to sort of turn off my brain and make something beautiful—and hopefully to find a hobby. But like everything else I do, I found a way to turn it into a more elaborate production. In this case, a business. Today, I’m building a sconce. So, you start with cleaning the molds and deciding what color you’re going to cast in. When the clay goes into the molds, it’s a liquid. As the plaster in the mold absorbs the water in the clay, you create the shell of a ceramic piece. After the shells have finished their 36 hours of firing in the kiln, they are moved to a room where we assemble the electrical components. With every…