Take 5: Portable Lamps, Upstate Living, an Instagram Favorite + More

Take 5: Portable Lamps, Upstate Living, an Instagram Favorite + More

Every other week we’re inviting one of the Design Milk team to share five personal favorites – an opportunity for each of us to reveal the sort of designs we use and appreciate in our own lives from a more personal perspective. Editor + Community Manager Vy Yang takes the reins this week for our Take 5 series…

1. East Fork Pottery
Let’s face it, this year has been HARD and it’s not even over yet. To combat the moments of feeling overwhelmingly stressed and anxious, I’ve been making little changes in my day-to-day life that bring me joy, one of which was upgrading my dinnerware to all East Fork Pottery. Founded in 2010 by Alex Matisse (great grandson of legendary Henri Matisse, NBD), Connie Matisse, and John Vigeland, East Fork is a North Carolina-based company that creates beautiful, durable ceramics. You really need to hold, own and use a piece to understand just how amazing these ceramics are. I already own four of their Everyday Bowls, which I bought during one of their seconds sales and only intended to use them for styled IG photos. Now, I reach for them every chance I get for meals and snacks. I didn’t think I could fall in love with bowls yet here I am. I recently decided to invest in a complete dinnerware set of six and, after watching their process, had no qualms about completing my checkout after seeing the craftsmanship that goes into making each piece. East Fork also champions equity + accountability in the workplace and cares deeply about national issues, which makes me love them even more.

2. Portable Lanterns: UMA Lantern by Pablo Designs and Carrie LED Lamp by Menu
These two lamps also spark joy in my life. We’re currently redoing our backyard and one of the things I’m most excited for besides a garden is a space to have socially distanced outdoor hangouts. I plan on using my portable UMA lantern and Carrie lamp to illuminate the space but I also currently use them every day indoors to read books to my daughter before bedtime (these are perfect because they don’t get hot) or set the mood for an evening of relaxing with my husband.

The UMA Lantern in our daughter’s old playroom

3. Eric Petschek
I don’t know Eric (also known on Instagram as @cb) personally but I wish he was my friend. He’s an incredibly talented interior and architectural photographer who likes to “capture moments of calm and use light to create subtle drama.” Eric is also so well versed in design itself that he designed fellow photographer Alice Gao’s apartment. I love seeing the world through his unique lens and thoroughly enjoy his IG Story tours where he shares his knowledge about different buildings and places in easy, digestible snapshots. Just watch one and you’ll see he has an eagle eye for the smallest details that would normally go unnoticed. On the flip side of his modern @cb account, @cg is like a brain vacation to the countryside.

4. Open Spaces
I’m in the middle of designing my toddler daughter’s room and I’m going for a more modern space that’s not overly saccharine or kiddish. I’m opting for furniture and accessories that will hopefully grow with her, even when she starts having her own opinions and preferences about her room. These storage bins by Open Spaces have a contemporary look to them and I love that they have wooden tops to conceal toys or act as a surface for her to draw. Open Spaces also offers other storage solutions and accessories like this entryway rack and these nesting trays.

5. Upstate: Living Spaces with Space to Live by Lisa Przystup
Opposite of modern spaces, I’m also drawn to this new book that will be released in October and focuses on upstate living. Lately I find myself wanting to escape suburban life for a quieter, idyllic life in the countryside, if only for a weekend, but since I won’t be traveling anytime soon, this book might just fill that need. Lisa, a multi-talented writer, florist and model, profiles twelve unique interiors on both sides of the Hudson and with two hundred newly commissioned photographs by Sarah Elliott. I won’t be surprised when we all start dreaming about a place upstate to call our own.