BlogTour Milan: The Gessi Concept Lab

BlogTour Milan: The Gessi Concept Lab | CLOTH & KIND

This should have been our first clue that we were in for the ride of our lives at the Gessi Concept Lab in the heart of the Brera fashion district in Milan, Italy. As we first entered the building, we snapped pics on these adorable little vintage Vespas (the kind that everyone is dashing through the crowded streets of Milan on!) in front of the Gessi step and repeat before descending the dramatic set of stairs into one of the most unforgettable experiences of the entire BlogTour Milan trip.

BlogTour Milan: The Gessi Concept Lab | CLOTH & KIND
What exactly is the Gessi Concept Lab, you ask? It is a luxurious multilevel wellness play space comprised of waterfalls and pools, stone, wood and surprising underground vertical gardens, all set up to showcase Gessi’s bath and kitchen products but it feels like anything BUT a showroom. We will do our best to share this magical place that brings the beauty and elegance of the Gessi brand to life through our images and words, but in reality the only way to truly experience it is to be there yourselves. If you ever find yourself in Milan, we highly encourage a stop into the Concept Lab, which is open to the public. You won’t want to leave, trust us!

The space is set up almost like a museum exhibit, and is titled The Bathrooms of the World. It includes seven installations with inspiration from Morocco, Japan, Russia, New York, Scandinavia, the Mediterranean and Bali. Perhaps what we loved most about the entire thing was Gessi‘s ability to mix their often times sleek and modern products with rustic, natural or timeless pieces of furniture and accessories to create that storied and layered look that we always seek in our own designs. Proof, yet again, that the best interiors include a variety of finishes, styles and tones mixed together to create the most interesting of patinas. Allow us to share a few of our personal favorite spaces from within the exhibit. First, the dramatic entrance to the space…

The Moroccan project features the traditional Tadelakt technique, a nearly waterproof plaster used in the palaces, hammams and bathrooms of Morocco. Special Moroccan lime is applied to the walls, which are then finished with river rocks and treated with a soft black or olive oil soap for water resistance. The beauty lies in the glowing, soft undulating touch of the individual artisan.

BlogTour Milan: The Gessi Concept Lab | CLOTH & KIND

BlogTour Milan: The Gessi Concept Lab | CLOTH & KIND

BlogTour Milan: The Gessi Concept Lab | CLOTH & KIND

In a new twist on Oya stone, the Gessi Design Studio mixed slats of wood and sandblasted travertine in a Japanese bath. Created naturally from lava and ash, and known for its warm texture, Oya stone was used by Frank Lloyd Wright in 1923 for the facing of the Imperial Hotel in Tokyo. In this Gessi version of a Japanese bath, an original tansu-type piece with its signature hardware becomes a stunning vanity.

BlogTour Milan: The Gessi Concept Lab | CLOTH & KIND

BlogTour Milan: The Gessi Concept Lab | CLOTH & KIND

The epitome of cool, calm and collected, the Scandinavian-inspired bath blends limed pine, marble, stone and hemp, along with other materials.  The mirror is framed with a special treatment of lime with a hemp-based coating.

BlogTour Milan: The Gessi Concept Lab | CLOTH & KIND

BlogTour Milan: The Gessi Concept Lab | CLOTH & KIND

BlogTour Milan: The Gessi Concept Lab | CLOTH & KIND

In a fresh twist on time-honored Indonesian design, the Balinese bath features a rugged wood block wall and teak bench that contrast with slick stone walls, modern pedestal sinks and Italian faucets and showers.

BlogTour Milan: The Gessi Concept Lab | CLOTH & KIND

BlogTour Milan: The Gessi Concept Lab | CLOTH & KIND

BlogTour Milan: The Gessi Concept Lab | CLOTH & KIND

BlogTour Milan: The Gessi Concept Lab | CLOTH & KIND

As you can see from above, the use of the natural world throughout the space was incredible. A living wall, ferns draping over walls and mirrors, palm fronds abound. We loved it all!

BlogTour Milan: The Gessi Concept Lab | CLOTH & KIND

BlogTour Milan: The Gessi Concept Lab | CLOTH & KIND

Thank you, most sincerely, to the entire Gessi team for providing us with this once in a lifetime BlogTour Milan opportunity and for hosting us in your absolutely lovely Concept Lab. It’s all an experience we won’t soon forget. Ciao!


BlogTour Milan Sponsors | ModenusBLANCO AmericaGessiClever Storage by KesseboehmerDekton by CosentinoNational Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA).

 

Image Credits | Krista Nye Schwartz & Tami Ramsay of CLOTH & KIND & Gessi.

 

BlogTourLa: Goccia, ‘The Drop’

BlogTourLA: Goccia, The Drop | CLOTH & KIND

We were blown away by the simple, understated beauty of the Gessi line which we were first introduced to at the West Edge Design Fair in LA when we were there for BlogTourLA.

In particular, the new Goccia collection had us in awe. Inspired by the shape of a single water drop, the line was conceived by Italian designer and sculptor Prospero Rasulo who speaks so beautifully in this video about how the concept for Goccia was developed out of respect for water and the environment…

Goccia, which translates to ‘the drop’ was not only physically designed out of respect for our environment but also functions with conservation in mind. All Goccia faucets are equipped with a technology allowing for a 50% water savings without compromising functionality.

BlogTourLA: Goccia, The Drop | CLOTH & KIND

Form and function. Now that gets us super excited!

BlogTourLA: Goccia, The Drop | CLOTH & KIND

To view the full line of Gessi products, be sure to check out their site. ‘The drop’, after all, is a mere drop in the bucket of their many gorgeous and highly functional products. We’re officially ‘in amore’.

BlogTourLA: The Therapy of Steam

My master bathroom sucks and Mr. Steam is partly to blame. In no way were any Mr. Steam products used in the design of my bathroom and, alas, therein lies my problem, but unfortunately it goes deeper than that. I have, a-hem, an “issue” with relaxing. On our recent Modenus + BlogTourLA trip, Krista and I had the opportunity to visit the Snyder Diamond showroom in Los Angeles and see many of the Mr. Steam products in action (think scantily clad gorgeous model lolling about in various shower scenarios involving lots of water, steam, aromatherapy, ChromaTherapy, iSteam technology and a throng of BlogTourLA google-y eyed watcher-oners who were taking countless pictures of said model.) Mind you, I like well designed product as much as the next designer, but shower technology that involves hanging out longer in the bathroom is totally lost on me. My master bath is a glorified outhouse, albeit clad in carerra marble, the only modern day luxuries it provides are running water, electricity and a sewer line. Nothing about the space makes me or anyone else for that matter want to hang out in there longer than it takes to get the grime off. Its utilitarian design (mind you not in a Scandinavian, gorgeous kind of way) works for me because I am a wash and wear kinda girl, my entire shower-out-the-door routine lasting no more than 15 minutes. In all honestly, I have worn this bare bones approach like a badge of honor, proud that I am not one who dabbles in the shower and bathroom with all manner of fluff and puff routines. Who needs soap to shave when you have running water?! As it turns out, the joke is sooo on me.


Historically, relaxation involving water, steam and sweat is a longstanding practice dating back to the ancient Indus Valley Civilization, where the ruins of the earliest public baths were found. From that point forward, whether in the public bathing houses of Greece or Rome, the volcanic spring-fed onsens of Japan or the sweat lodges and Temazcalli of the Native Americans, the cross cultural tradition to cleanse, purify and relax was culturally embraced. I don’t know about you, but this is not my cultural experience in this day and age in which I feel compelled to move at all times and never have enough time to do all that is on my list.

To get their point across about the many documented benefits of relaxing and steam therapy, and why simply taking time to care for yourself is totally worth it physically and mentally, Mr. Steam treated the entire BlogTourLA crew to a Korean Day Spa. That experience, highlighted by being buck naked and scrubbed down with mineral salt head to toe by a small Korean woman in black lingerie, shifted my perspective so profoundly that I am forever changed. What Krista and I witnessed at the spa, as much as what we experienced personally, spoke so eloquently of a culture that values its generational community, and one in which each body is embraced as it is, as part of the collective and beautiful whole. We mingled, bathed and steamed with young and old, with entire families that so palpably cared for each other that it practically brought us to tears. We left knowing that Mr. Steam was on to something, specifically that our overall health and well-being is directly proportional to how often we incorporate regular bouts of relaxation to restore and regenerate our body, mind and soul.

Even though Mr. Steam did not create steam, since 1917 the company has been at the forefront of the technology curve, and is currently the largest manufacturer of electric steam boilers in the world for the U.S. Navy, hospital operating rooms and the Kennedy Space Center. Mr. Steam continues to innovate and as such the company is a leader in the commercial and residential spa experience offering swipe-touch controls, advanced steam shower generators and systems, aromatherapy and ChromaTherapy, and the most advanced towel warmers on the market today. As much as I would like to gut my master bath and start over with my own steam therapy design, the best I can do at the moment is play with Mr. Steam’s nifty virtual spa app and to highly recommend steam therapy to our clients, which is shockingly well priced. Who knew?! Price out your own at home spa experience here.

PHOTO CREDITS: Mr. Steam | Roman Bath House Relic | Salt

Hue: Honey


Fabric
: Indian Zag in Honey by Suzanne Rheinstein for Lee Jofa | Chandelier | Pillow | Bathroom | Wallpaper

Details: Good Clean Fun

So, it’s kind of weird to be posting about something as seemingly unimportant as soap in the bathroom, right? And in the grand scheme of things, yes, this should easily fall into last place on anyone’s to-do list. But, alas, I’m cursed with an innate love of thinking through every last detail when it comes to interiors and I consider it a guilty pleasure to be able to do so.

Lately, I’ve become fascinated with all the lovely varieties and fragrances of soaps out there, and because I’m in the finishing stages of decorating our home (post-renovation) I’ve been spending an inordinate amount of time thinking about the smallest of touches. The right soap for each bathroom is one of them. Here are a few of the suds-producers that I liked best, paired with bathrooms they’d look (and smell) just right in…

no. 1 | no. 2 | no. 3 | bathroom

And a few more, just for good clean fun…

bathroom | soap

soap | bathroom

bathroom | soap
soap | bathroom

bathroom | soap

I know that I can’t be the only weird one out there who thinks about these little itty bitty details, right? Which soap am I missing that you love most?