by Marisa Marcantonio

With temperatures still plunging into the 20's in New York, walking one block becomes an Arctic Expedition. In an effort to stay sane and cozy, there are ways to combat the cold while bolstering thoughts of a happy warm place, with anticipation of spring flowers.

Photo courtesy of West Elm

Wrap yourself in a cozy ivory sheepskin throw, slung over this ash wood-framed armchair with leather seat and back from West Elm.  I love its casual spare nordic appeal.

 Photo courtesy of Lee Industries

Every time I see this chair in the Lee Industries showroom in High Point, I have to sit in it. The diminutive armchair in the style of a French club chair embraces you with its cozy shearling finish.

Photo courtesy of Atelier Demiurge

Distantly related to a shag-haired Cousin It, Atelier Demiurge's Baby Jane Slipper Chair, covered in Mongolian Lamb fur, provides a plush slightly-disco perch from which to watch the Olympics or general nesting.

 Photo courtesy of Jonathan Adler

Upholstered in a sheepskin fabric, the low-slung retro Maxime Chair from Jonathan Adler with brass details is feminine for more of an Auntie Mame-in-winter situation.

Photo courtesy of DWR

Whether you place it on the floor, or cover a chair with it, the New Zealand sheepskin throw from Design Within Reach with its deep pile and soft touch will warm even the most severe minimalists hearts.

 Photo courtesy of Monc XIII

Handwoven of Llama and Marino wool in Buenos Aires, Pehuen's chunky Cloud knit throw from Monc 13 has dramatically long fringe to emphasize the cozy factor.

 Photo courtesy of Ralph Lauren Home

Ok, so maybe its more teddy bear colored than winter white, but what's not to love about Ralph Lauren Home's Alpine Lodge Shearling Pillow, especially when used in multiples?


by Marisa Marcantonio

As I peruse the Gift Show, now called New York Now, I am struck by how many throws and cutting boards I am seeing. As random as that sounds, I guess it is because staying cozy and entertaining at home are still very popular activities. So stay in and nest. With more snow coming, it might be just what the Dr. ordered.

 Photos courtesy of Bower

Shape Boards, reversible wooden cutting boards from New York-based company Bower, have a graphic 3D pop of geometric color (painted in non-toxic paint) on one side and solid wood on the back and can be hung from the wall when not in use.

 For easy hanging, they have created instant art.

I am so taken with this version in red and turquoise. These have cool museum store written all over them, so I hope the curators of cool see them. 

Brooklyn-based artist Kim Tyler has created special throws with strong graphic elements as appealing as modern art. Inspired by the works of Bauhaus masters Anni and Josef Albers as well as Elsworth Kelly, the linear designs on soft goods has an artistic appeal.  Squares 1 above, of a boucle wool yarn and polymide for give, features a black and blue design against a grey ground.

Rectangles B, made of a heavy weight Italian wool and cashmere blend looks as alluring as a wall hanging as it does on a sofa back.

Photo courtesy of Johanna Howard

Johanna Howard, her first time out at the gift show as new designer created these wonderfully soft woven Alpaca throws.  Called Stockholm, the triangular design is bound by a thick stripe edge.

 Photo courtesy of Zuzunaga

Made to resemble pixels, British company Zuzunaga takes its inspiration from the digital age. From the Bitmap Collection of cotton and nylon knit throws, Labrynth is shown in deep orange with turquoise.

 Barcelona, another intricately patterned pixel-inspired pattern. I love their modern sensibility translated into an age old craft.

From the hand woven collection, the bright multicolored Squares throw is made in Spain out of 100% ecological Merino Wool.

The red marled color and deep green border on the Feeling Throw remind me of a watermelon.


by Marisa Marcantonio

Keeping cozy, be it by the fire or snuggled up in a favorite reading chair, is the key to successful winter hibernation. The evolution of the throw, and how they are used is upon us. Printed, patterned, chunky or refined, there is a wrap for every stylistic sensibility. Not to mention a fail-safe gift. They look great across the back of a sofa, neat and crisply folded, but they also look inviting casually strewn about. 

Here are my picks for staying warm in style this season.

 Photo courtesy of Dwellstudio

Pendleton Blanket designed by DwellStudio takes the classic wool blanket and gives it a fresh twist in a mod Dwell pattern.

Photo courtesy of Garnet Hill

A classic over sized plaid in Garnet Hill's Buffalo Check wool throw in pale blue or charcoal is fireside ready.

Photo courtesy Alicia Adams

 Wrap up in Alicia Adams Alpaca Flanigan throw in baby alpaca tipped in silk.  Then grab a book.

Photo courtesy of Ikea

Santa just may have a few of these Ikea Rens Sheepskins in his sleigh.

Photo courtesy of West Elm

Add a little holiday cheer with West Elm's Triangle Lattice Throw in cotton acrylic blend.

 Photo courtesy of Gilt

If you want to snuggle and it isn't below zero temperatures, Coyuchi's Rustic Linen Throw from Gilt has an understated rustic look to it.

 Photo courtesy of Pendleton USA

With classic camp blanket heritage, Pendleton USA's  5th Avenue Glacier Park cream throw with primary colored stripes is always a good option.

Photo courtesy of Serena and Lily

Chunky and bright, these Spanish-made mohair throws from Serena and Lily have a substantial fringe and juicy color options. The peacock is a beautiful rich blue.

 Photo courtesy of Dering Hall/Cavalier

I love the mix of super long suede fringe and wool in the Cavalier Goods throw through Dering Hall. The sophisticated throw, made in Spain, has a color variety that can match interiors bold and neutral.

Photo courtesy of Saks

Matouk's chunky cotton Ravinia throw resembles that great knit sweater that you've had for years and can't give away. The coziness is just too good.

Photo courtesy of ABC Carpet and Home

Woven in Nepal,  the 6 ply cashmere Umrao basketweave throw available at ABC Carpet and Home is a toasty option when only the best fibers are required.

Photo courtesy of Thomas Paul

Capturing an elephant in repose, Thomas Paul's baby alpaca throw in aqua reverses a colored ground on the  opposite side.

 Photo courtesy of Sferra

In dusty, sophisticated colors of lilac pale blue husk yellow and grey, Sferra's wool Como throw has a graphic lattice pattern which reverses to different shades of the colors.

Photo courtesy of Julie Vos

You may have noticed a great many chic printed Indian scarves out there like this one. Technology and current design trends have made Indian printed scarves so good looking. Sometimes a long, soft scarf is better than a sweater when it can be draped numerous ways. I love these, because you can wear them long or wrap around a few times for a cozier warmth. The super-soft Pueblo scarf from The Julie Collection Julie Vos is light as air and comes in10 brightly colored ikats. I think I need one for each day of the week.

Photo courtesy of John Robshaw

As veteran traveler John Robshaw can tell you, having one of these on hand is always worth it. His block printed Batak wool scarf can go the distance.

Photo courtesy of Roberta Roller Rabbit

A vibrant lime green wool scarf, the Jemna from Roberta Roller Rabbit,  mixes two classic RRR happy patterns.

Photo courtesy of Burrow and Hive

Burrow and Hive creates textiles and pillows and translate these designs into wool scarves as well. Above, the Jackie in tangerine and cream wool with a touch of silk.