About

 
Arren Williams is the name, and I'm a stylist, editor and trend reporter. You'll catch my work regularly popping up in print in the likes of the National Post, House & Home and elsewhere. I'm also a guest expert on Citytv's CityLine, and you can occasionally find me on HGTV as well as on ABC 7 News in Chicago.

To keep things fun I've tapped a couple of friends - Julia Black and Jenn Hannotte - to contribute their views on design too. Enjoy!

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Entries in Jenn Hannotte (17)

Thursday
Feb112010

Guest blog / Jenn Hannotte: A tale of two tables

Jenn Hannotte: There are two types of Craigslist thrills: when you buy something for cheap and find out it's worth a lot more, and when you find something cheap and you make it worth a lot more - even if you only slap some paint on it. My front room has tried on a couple of coffee tables in the last few months that gave me both types of 'YES!' moments. 

My old coffee table was a $20 purchase that included two end tables. It's now sold since I try to follow a pretty strict 'something in, something out' regime. The shape was ornate and scalloped, and I thought that painting it with a matte finish and juxtaposing it with my otherwise modern furniture would look interesting. I used one of the end tables in my daughter's room as a side table and sold off the other at a garage sale. That's a lot of mileage out of $20! I was able to play with a trend without busting the bank, and that to me is what makes Craigslist and thrifting in general so worthwhile.

My latest find was an impulse buy - I saw it, loved it, and had to have it. I knew nothing about the coffee table, except at $150 was pretty cheap for the going rate of mid-century teak on Craigslist. Within a few hours of contacting the seller, I was on my way home with it, as well as armed with a new little bit of info: that it was manufactured by France and Son, Denmark. Off to Google and within minutes I realized I had a Peter Hvidt & Orla Mølgaard-Nielsen coffee table designed in 1955, and produced by France and Son for 2 years. Designers and manufacturer in hand - and more Googling - I discovered here that my little purchase was worth about $1000!! As you can imagine, I'm not likely to sell it any time soon - even if I could get that kind of return on my meager investment - it looks quite at home in my front room and knowing I won the 'Craigslist lottery' makes it that much more appealing!

You'll see the old scalloped coffee table and end table below, followed along by the shot from Craigslist that got me hot under the collar and, finally, the Danish table sitting pretty in the living room. 

For more of Jenn's take on style click here.

   

Wednesday
Feb032010

Guest blog / Jenn Hannotte: 15 years in the pantry

Hi one and all, time to welcome a new contributor to the blog, Jenn Hannotte. Jenn has a great eye for style, and practically a black belt in the art of Craigslist, in fact you can see her place (and some sweet finds) in the Spring 2010 issue of Design Lines.

Julie Gibb and Christian Morrison started  Pantry Press by installing a letterpress - you guessed it -  in the pantry of their home in 1995. 

Now, 15 years on, they've retrofitted  the old stables in the backyard of their current home in Toronto's West End and are busy hand-crafting and printing custom wedding stationery, greeting cards, posters and - to use their words - 'all manner of ephemera.' To celebrate, they've opened an on-line emporium where you can buy this poster (among other things) because, hey, everyone can use a reminder. And, if you fancy reading more from the world of letterpress, be sure to check out their blog, dubbed Ink In Your Veins, here.

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