I stopped by the Architectural Digest Home Design Show this past Saturday and despite the anemic economy, Manhattan’s Pier 94 was packed to the gills with exhibitors, the design trade, and the interiors-loving general public. I’m unsure how much commerce was actually going down, but all appeared to be copasetic.

Initially a stand-alone event, the Green East Conference was integrated (and possibly downsized) into the main AD show a couple of weeks prior to show time. I’m unsure why but I was a bit underwhelmed by Green East — building supplies and household appliances were rightfully represented but the presence of innovative interiors — stuff with true "wow" factor — was lacking. 

A few standouts from the AD Show and Green East:

Excellent to see Scott Raffaele from 4Korners and his gorgeous striped credenzas representing Red Hook at the MADE section of the AD show. Scott is a consummate craftsman with deep eco-sensibilities: He creates unique and apartment-friendly modern wood furniture with off-cuts, salvaged materials, and other supplies that would otherwise sit around collecting dust or end up landfilled. 

 A real showstopper: a credenza from Brooklyn's 4Korners

Showing with Scott was Irish designer Martin O’Flynn (another designer with Red Hook connections…it must be something in the water down here) from OF Design. I wasn’t familiar with O’Flynn’s work but if I had had the ability to sneak away with his Nu Coffee Table in my brochure-filled tote bag, I would have. It was gorgeous.

The handy-dandy Nu Table from Martin O'Flynn's OF Design. 

A pleasant surprise was meeting Brooklyn-based Peter Pracilio showing with the American Design Club. Although his "Swarovski Crystal Safari" series was the main attraction, turns out Peter designs some stunning green gear for GO! Pet Design. Check out the Urban Driftwood Dog Bowl, the Upcycle Elevated Dog Bowl, shoo-in accessories for the incoming presidential pooch) and the Paca Pets Cat Toy

Peter Pracilio's eco-friendly pet gear wasn't on display but he was happy to talk about it. Eco-conscious canine/feline parents take note.

Another notable Brooklyn-based firm, Lights Up!, was in attendance with a few new designs including modern lamp shades made from recycled PET fabric.  

Over at in the Green East section, Alive Structures caught my eye with the prettiest darn brochures that I encountered all day. The Queens-based firm specializes in green roofs, walls, and gardens with an eye towards the residential sector. Alive Structures keeps it local and keeps it sustainable, key in the increasingly popular green roof trend. 
The impressive handiwork of Alive Structures. 

All and all, plenty of eye candy and some standouts at the main AD show (particularly in the indie-design/one-of-a-kind MADE section) and plenty of high hopes that the dedicated Green East exhibition is beefed up next year. 

Nature of the stuffed variety representin' at the AD Home Show. 

Nature of the recycled driftwood variety also made an appearance. 


Images: Matt, OF Design, Go! Pet Design, Alive Structures

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

Where's the green?
With a beefed-down Green East presence, local indie designers shone bright at the Architectural Digest Home Design Show.