Having just spent some quality time thumbing through West Elm’s fall catalogue, I must say that while the new offerings don’t strike me as being the retailer’s strongest or greenest, there’s still plenty to love … especially for the zoologically-minded.

For one, there’s West Elm’s new collaboration with “noted pet portraitist” Scott Lifshutz. The collection includes three different machine washable cotton pillow covers — horse, hound and a trio of handsome pooches — that use “a special technique to capture and preserve all of the painterly details and nuances of Scott's originals.” There’s also a quartet of porcelain canapé plates, each stamped with a different (Airedale, Boxer, Bull Terrier and French Bulldog) canine watercolor. Finally, the Lifshutz/West Elm collaboration includes a trio of watercolor feather prints in solid pinewood frames. The feather prints are a bit of a departure in the subject department for Lifshutz but lovely nonetheless.

Also animal-themed is the latest output from West Elm’s ongoing collaboration with fabulous nonprofit Aid to Artisans: Four papier-mâché trophy heads handmade in Haiti with entirely recycled materials. These “witty riffs on horned African animals” include antlers in two different sizes, a small wildebeest, and a small and large gemsbock.

Finally, moving from the wall to the kitchen table, is Brooklyn-based repurposed tableware designer Sarah Cihat’s horsey dinnerware collection consisting of porcelain soup bowls, salad plates, and dinner plates (each sold separately in sets of four). Each piece is emblazoned with a silhouette of a noble steed. 

Have you caught West Elm's new offerings yet? Anything, animal-related, eco-friendly or not, catch your eye? 

Photos courtesy West Elm

Matt Hickman ( @mattyhick ) writes about design, architecture and the intersection between the natural world and the built environment.

Animal attraction: West Elm's fall menagerie
From canine pillow covers to porcelain steed soup bowls to papier-mâché wildebeest busts, West Elm's collaborative fall offerings are sure to please animal-lo