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A Hidden Oasis in a City of Concrete
In New York City, experiencing even small pockets of greenery can feel like the height of luxury, a truth that spoke to the botanical designer Jarema Osofsky, who opened the Secret Plant Shop in 2017. After a few summers spent selling plants to her neighbors from the sidewalk outside her Brooklyn apartment, she converted her spare bedroom into an appointment-only boutique — unofficially called “the plant speakeasy” — that offered a curated selection of plants potted in ceramic containers made by Osofsky and her friends or sourced from vintage dealers. The project eventually outgrew the space, and in December, the Secret Plant Shop reopened in a light-filled studio in Gowanus, where Osofsky plans to host potting workshops. Visits are still by appointment and can be made by sending a direct message to Osofsky’s Instagram account @dirtqueennyc, or by emailing email@example.com. “I think it’s that much more rewarding to have plants in an urban environment,” Osofsky told me. “It really does connect us more to nature and help us feel like we can nurture something ourselves.”
A Design Exhibition Where the Objects on View Can Be Taken To Go
The Swedish Design Museum isn’t a museum in the traditional sense; instead, it sets up experiential programs to make different aesthetic philosophies accessible to the masses. Its latest project is inspired by the idea that design objects are built to actually be used, a principle that has been embraced by Swedes at large. The adventure begins with an organic white-cotton canvas backpack from the functional brand Sandqvist, which people can reserve for free and return after one week. There are four different kinds of bags, each assembled by curators from the region of Sweden to which its contents pertain: the West bag centers on Gothenburg’s rich fika coffee-break culture and includes a mug and a board game; North focuses on the forest in Umea and contains a woodcarving tool set from the outdoor company Taljogram; East encourages a trip to Stockholm’s food markets and comes with a wool blanket from the linens brand Stackelberg; and South revolves around the scenic views and urban culture of Malmo as taken in on bicycle, while wearing an innovative helmet. Reservations available through March, swedishdesignmuseum.com.
From the time Corrada Rodriguez d’Acri, Delfina Pinardi and Maria Sole Torlonia launched their Milan-based clothing line, Blazé Milano, in 2003, a certain kind of woman — like the Vogue Paris editor in chief Emanuelle Alt and the model and author Caroline de Maigret — has come to rely on their sharp blazers, cut to hit just below one’s bum (important) with interior pockets tailored to fit your iPhone and wallet (even more important). This month, the trio launches a capsule collection with Aerin Lauder’s namesake New York-based lifestyle brand, which includes a summer-ready sand-colored linen blazer, a silk smoking jacket in a microfloral print and a white, navy-striped jacket in light, textured cotton. “We were inspired by the wildflowers used to decorate homes in the Hamptons,” Rodriguez d’Acri told me, in a nod to Lauder’s family home on the East End of Long Island. “The pinstripe is a homage to the style of one of the most iconic American men, known for his class and charm: John F. Kennedy Jr.” From $660, blaze-milano.com.
Don’t Call These Collages Punk
The British artist Linder Sterling has never been comfortable with the term “punk.” By the time she lacerated her way into the public consciousness with her cut-and-paste cover art for the Buzzcocks’ 1977 single “Orgasm Addict,” she tells me, “I wanted out.” Yet more than four decades later, the movement’s lo-tech and disruptive mentality flows throughout “Linderism” at the (decidedly unpunk) Kettle’s Yard house and art gallery in Cambridge, England — Sterling’s first major retrospective in her home country. The multisensory show opens on that printed Buzzcocks figure — with its Morphy Richards iron head and smiling mouths for nipples — and traces the evolution of Sterling’s photomontages up to the present day, with recent works such as “Superautomatisme Ballets Russes I, 2015,” for which she distorted and marbleized a magazine page using enamel paint to mesmerizing effect. Sterling even subtly subverts the history of Kettle’s Yard itself, once home to the Tate curator and modern art collector Jim Ede, by invoking the spirit of his wife, Helen, with sound and scent installations and a line of “House of Helen” miscellany for sale in the gallery shop. “Linderism” is on view through April 26 at Kettle’s Yard, Castle Street, Cambridge, U.K., kettlesyard.co.uk.
As the end of winter approaches, our skin can be in need of some extra pampering. One solution is to self-treat at night, when, according to Jessica Hoyer, the founder of the Hamburg-based beauty brand Bynacht, “the capillary blood flow is much higher, which makes the skin more permeable for applied substances.” Hoyer’s Iconic Reborn Radiant Serum contains Persian silk tree extract, which, she says, “aids in fighting free radicals absorbed during the day.” The German skin guru Dr. Barbara Sturm recently launched Night Ampoules, small glass vessels filled with a serum that helps with nightly renewal and contains beta-glucan to reduce redness and irritation. The luxuriously thick Velvet Sleeping Mask With Saffron Flowers from Sisley contains shea butter, thyme honey and vitamin B5 to lock in moisture, while Aesop’s Sublime Replenishing Night Masque enriches skin with vitamins B, C, E and F for a brightening effect. And for those who’d prefer a classic night cream, the Nocturnal Eclipse Recovery Cream from the London-based brand 111Skin contains a high concentration of hyaluronic acid for hydration and the plant Centella asiatica, which helps build collagen.
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