Pinterest makes an acquisition, Nate Berkus enters the sleep game and more
Thanks to Instagram accounts like Zillow Gone Wild, eclectic haunts from all corners of the world, including a 1920s blue-roofed mansion in Michigan that internet admirers have dubbed “The Smurfs’ House”– steal hearts near and far. Whatever happens next, stay in the know with our weekly roundup of headlines, launches and events, recommended reading and more.
Pinterest has reached an agreement to acquire The Yes, an AI-powered fashion shopping platform that provides users with a personalized feed based on their brand, style and size preferences. The Yes is currently home to hundreds of brands, whose listings are curated by an algorithm that Pinterest wants to apply to categories like home, beauty and food. Pinterest plans to complete the acquisition this quarter, after which it plans to scrap The Yes app and website and merge the company’s team with its own.
Franchise Group – the parent company of American Freight, Badcock Home Furniture & More and Buddy’s Home Furnishings – has entered a three-week exclusive trading period to acquire Kohl’s Corp for nearly $8 billion in cash, Reuters reports. The transaction, which values the department store chain’s stock at $60 per share, $15 more than today, is subject to approval by Kohl’s board of directors. Kohl faced pressure to sell earlier this year after activist investors Macellum Advisors GP LLC and Engine Capital LP called on the company to do so. More recently, bidders such as Brookfield Asset Management Inc. and JC Penney investors Simon Property Group Inc. submitted competing bids for the retail chain.
Target announced plans to cut prices and cancel orders to get rid of unwanted inventory. According The New York Times, the move comes in response to a recent shift in consumer behavior away from household goods, technology and sports entertainment towards travel and out-of-home experiences. The change has left retailers like Target with an overload of inventory, which the company has been stocking up on during the recent period of surging pandemic demand. The new plans will squeeze profits in the current quarter, the company said – a blow that comes just three weeks after Target shares fell nearly 25% following an earnings report lamentable.
Horticultural lifestyle brand Lively Root has closed a $4 million seed funding round, with the former Jack in the Box CEO taking part Jake GoodallVuori’s original investor C. J. Stos and founder of McKenzie Farms Ken Cook, among others. Founded in July 2020, the company aims to encourage the creation of more green spaces by connecting people with selected plant selections from local nurseries. Armed with the new funding, Lively Root aims to expand beyond its current markets in California, Oregon and Florida; move on to additional categories such as outdoor plants, vacation items and plant care accessories; and is gearing up to launch a Series A fundraising round later this year.
San Francisco-based startup Pulley announced the completion of a $4.4 million seed funding round led by Susa Ventures, Tech Crunch reports. Co-founders Andreas Rotenberg and Charlie Jacobson started the company to streamline the building permit process — an often frustrating experience, they say, due to the country’s 19,000 different permitting jurisdictions, each with their own system of interpreting and applying building permits. building codes – through the implementation of its workflow software. With the new capital injection, the company plans to grow its core product, grow its team and expand into other markets.
According to a survey by financial services company Bankrate, 74% of respondents consider owning a home to be the highest possible achievement, above that of a successful career, raising a family or getting a job. University diploma, The New York Times reports. Among respondents who did not own a home, roughly the same proportion cited affordability factors like income level and record house prices as preventing them from making a down payment. To meet the homeownership goal, 58% said they would be willing to compromise, such as moving to another state, buying a repairman, or moving to a less desirable area.
Courtesy of Beautyrest
Launches and Collaborations
Design icon Nate Berkus has teamed up with Beautyrest for a limited-edition sleep collection. The new range includes down mattresses, mattress protectors and pillows, with each item incorporating recycled plastics recovered from the ocean.
The Kaleidoscope Project, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing opportunities for designers in BIPOC communities, has announced the location and date for this year’s Designer Showcase: the 1906 Tyler Street Fire Station in Pittsfield, Massachusetts, August 5. The organization selected four design teams:Erick and Lisa Walker Brown by Everick Brown Design; Dennis Gordon, Tanya Lewis and Marilyn Lavergne Austin Gray Design Group; Virginia Toledo, associated with Toledo Geller; and Gray Rasheeda from Gray Space Interiors – to reimagine four residential units in the converted fire station with a focus on sustainability.
Practicality and minimalism may have been the dominant design influences of the past decade, but the pandemic has reawakened in many a taste for something much more opulent in the home. For Eater, Jaya Saxena dives into a manifestation of the current trend towards maximalism – the current online craze and growing community surrounding vintage porcelain collecting.
When it comes to suburban residential development, local landlord-activists enjoy outsized control over new construction – a set of circumstances that has led to the rise of NIMBY, an acronym that stands for “not in my backyard. and describes neighbors struggling with nearby construction, especially multi-unit buildings. For The New York Times, Conor Dougherty offers an in-depth look at the roots of NIMBYism, the policies that have both enabled and thwarted the phenomenon, and the groups that have emerged in opposition as the country’s housing crisis worsens.
Call for applications
Jamie Stern Furniture, Carpet & Leather has opened submissions for its third annual carpet design competition. The competition encourages members of the architecture and design community to submit an original design for the chance to win a custom wool rug produced by Jamie Stern, with winners to be selected from each of the four regions: North East , south-east, mid-west and west. To submit an application before the July 1 deadline, click here.
The International Furnishings and Design Association is now accepting applications for six professional grants available through its Education Foundation. Awards include the Irma Dobkin Universal Design Fellowship, a $3,000 award open to someone involved in a Universal Design project; the Ina Mae Kaplan Historic Preservation Grant, $2,000 open to those involved in design/furniture restoration or preservation; the Elizabeth Brown Scholarship, $2,500 open to an accredited US interior design program; the Tony Torrice Professional Development Scholarship, $1,500 open to design professionals seeking advanced study; the Valerie Moran Memorial Scholarship, an award of up to $3,000 for a professional IFDA member; and the Barbara Brock Memorial Fellowship, a $1,500 award for two IFDA experts to travel to speak at various industry venues. For more information, click here.
Courtesy of Julia Duke
Susan Becherindustry leader and pioneer in design public relations, died on June 3. For more than 35 years, Becher ran his eponymous New York-based public relations and marketing firm specializing in home decor and lifestyle representation. brands and personalities (the firm is currently managed by directors Julia Duke and Molly Bates). Becher has made a name for himself working alongside brands such as Marimekko, Flos, Cassina, Boffi, Pottery Barn and Waterworks, as well as design big names such as Victoria Hagan, Thomas Jayne and Orlando Diaz Azcuy. “She was highly regarded for her contributions to design, but her peers often remember her for mentoring women in design and public relations. She started her own business at a time when women could hardly get their own credit cards,” says Duke. “She has consciously committed herself to an all-women’s business throughout her career and has trained and empowered her employees to take on leadership roles in her business and with her customers.” Becher is survived by her husband, Bruce; sons David and Mark; and Marc’s fiancée, Danielle. They will hold a public memorial at 2:30 p.m. on June 12 at the New York Society for Ethical Culture at 2 West 64th St., where Bruce and Susan were married in 1978.
Photographer Patrick Cline passed away late last month, leaving behind a legacy in the interior design industry for high-quality imagery featured in titles such as In the style, red book, Magazine V and vanity loungewith a list of praised subjects that includes the work of Albert Hadley, Celery Kemble, Kelly Wearstler, Mark D. Sikes and more. Cline fell in love with photography as an 18-year-old apprentice developing films in a studio under Spitalfields Market and went on to make a name for himself photographing interiors. In 2009, Cline co-founded Lonny magazine alongside Michael Adams and then served as the title’s cinematographer for three years. “Pat’s keen eye, innate talent and genuine love for photography brought our magazine to life. It was natural, able to easily capture dozens of outstanding photos in just a few hours,” says Adams. “His charming personality and dry sense of humor ensured laughs on every shoot and made him a favorite in the design community. He will be greatly missed.”
Front page image: A room designed by Virginia Toledo for last year’s designer show home for The Kaleidoscope Project