A zakrose dresser

If You Have a Hammer, Throw a Party

Dock 6 Collective is a group of independent furniture and cabinet makers, including Carson Maddox Studios, Lagomorph Design, zakrose (whose dresser is pictured here) and -ism furniture (check out our January/February 2011 story about them), who like to party. But since they operate everything from hammers to heavy machinery at their 30,000 square foot facility at 4200 W. Diversey, they smartly save their carousing for their biannual Design and Art Series party, which this year will be Friday, May 4 from 6 p.m.–midnight. With beautiful furniture displays, juried artwork by dozens of artists throughout the space, food from E-Dogz Food Truck and Jo Snow (purveyor of flavored syrups for coffee, snow cones, Italian sodas and cocktails—yum!), and live music, we suggest you port at this dock Friday night. (The Saturday showing is from 11 a.m.-4 p.m.) —Gina Bazer

Dinosaur planters

Play Date

If there was the equivalent of a food pyramid in the home design world it would definitely recommend the inclusion of a quirky animal figure/toy in your healthy home accessory diet. All the best houses we’ve feature in our magazine (including this West Loop loft from our November/December 2011 issue have them. Even former Domino editrix Deborah Needleman named “a little animal” as one the “10 odd, yet essential, elements of style” in a Wall Street Journal article excerpted from her book The Perfectly Imperfect Home. That brings me to this weekend’s Friends of Pritzker School benefit party and auction, Playthings 2012, where 40 toys, including a bunch with animal motifs, made by local artists, architects, and students, will be auctioned (Saturday May 5, 7-10 p.m). The silly petite dinosaur planters shown here, donated by Mariel Heinemann of Building Blocks Toy Store, are among the offerings. —GB

Author Lizzie Garrett Mettler

Tomboy Rules

We at Chicago Home + Garden love a good coffee table book (so we wrote one—Chicago Spaces: Inspiring Interiors. But you can’t just have one book on your coffee table. That would be so un-layered. Luckily, The Haymaker Shop is hosting a Tomboy Style (Rizzoli) book-signing party on May 4 from 7 p.m.-10 p.m. The author, former Chicagoan Lizzie Garrett Mettler, wrote a fantastic new book documenting 80 years of stylish gals who haven’t been afraid to cross gender lines in fashion, lifestyle, and career. In honor of this fête, we got Lizzie to finish some sentences for us.

1. Every home should have a sitting room without a TV where the art of conversation can be honed and practiced. And a dog.

2. My most prized possession is a 1966 Sister Corita silkscreen that my husband and I bought together for our first wedding anniversary. I’d honestly rather have a Corita than a Warhol, as ridiculous as that may sound.

3. If I could live in any movie or TV setting it would be: A mix between Out of Africa, Kramer vs. Kramer, and American Gigolo. I am constantly on the hunt at flea markets for pith helmets, steamer trunks, safari chairs, and anything else that would fit the Karen Blixen aesthetic. My feelings toward the apartment in Kramer vs. Kramer are a little intense. The white Nesso lamp and the lucite side tables really get me. There’s something so simple but yet purposeful about it all, and it’s not so in-your-face like the Mad Men sets. And I had to mention American Gigolo because, who wouldn’t want to drive a 1980 Mercedes SL convertible and live poolside at The Beverly Hills hotel!?

4. My turn-to item of clothing is lately, a button-down from my husband’s closet. I’ve been pairing an over-sized shirt with skinny J. Brand jeans. It’s just so damn comfortable.

5. Best book I’ve read lately is: Franny and Zooey by J.D. Salinger. I just read it for the third time, and it still holds up. —GB

Vintage shooting targets

Fox News

I popped into Dovetail last week. It’s one of my favorite places to find vintage clothing, jewelry, and home items because it isn’t overstuffed with tons of merchandise—the owners pick and choose only the best. This visit, I fell in love with a vintage shooting target hanging on the wall. It was originally created for Sears, Roebuck & Co. and comes mounted on a wooden back. Woodsy animals like foxes are trendy right now and this lets you get in on the look without having to go too cutesy. Not a fox person? Go for a target featuring a raccoon or jack rabbit. —Alice Oglethorpe

A colorful terrarium

Terrarium Pandemonium

With the recent opening of Alapash, which specializes in terrariums, the miniature, self-contained landscape has officially hit the top of the trend list. If you still haven’t gotten yours, you have lots of options. There are brick-and-mortar store like Alapash, which is almost completely devoted to terrariums and offers pre-made and custom options (one from the shop is pictured here), and Sprout in Ukrainian Village, which has them to purchase and offers private build-your-own terrarium lessons for $25 plus the cost of materials. If you’d rather shop from your laptop, check out Bottle & Branch, a Chicago-based company that allows you to place custom orders. And if you want a fun at-home project, order a kit from Twig Terrariums. I spied them at last year’s Renegade Craft Fair Holiday Market and they are adorable. —AO