Antonio Lupi Chicago Italian Bathroom Design Showroom
La Dolce Lavatory

Antonio Lupi, a gran maestro of high-style, innovative Italian bathroom design is coming to River North this week, with a gran opening on April 2. This is the primero Antonio Lupi showroom in the U.S., brought here con amore by Luca Lanzetta and Maurizio Fiori. Lanzetta, owner of the Merchandise Mart’s sexy Italian kitchen company Ernestomeda Chicago, felt it was time to bring the same sensual synergy to the powder room. The showroom will be kitted out with the 2009 collection of tubs, sinks, and showers as well as a line of mosaic glass tiles (Lupi focused on glass and crystal when he founded the company in 1950) and limited-edition pieces like the Opium Sink—hand-carved from a 2,000 pound block of Italian moonstone. Off subject a bit, for more Italian style check out the terrific documentary on fashion designer Valentino that’s playing at the Landmark Theatres—even if you don’t give a hoot about haute couture, mamma mia, the opulent interior scenes and diva antics will blow you away.

Macy’s Flower Show Wedgwood Waterford Tudors Showtime Table

Flores Para Los Macy’s

Pink flamingos are invading State Street on Sunday, and John Waters is nowhere in sight—it’s the annual Macy’s Flower Show, and this year the retailer is trumpeting those kitschy icons more typically seen on a Sarasota cul-de-sac than in downtown Chicago. They’ve filled the Walnut Room with a colony of lawn ornaments, hung elaborate metal interpretations along the first-floor pillars, and crafted two large flamingos out of 5,000 pink kalanchoe blossoms. The show runs April 5 – 19, and there will be bushels of other horticultural attractions, including larger-than-life designer bouquets by local florists such as Anthony Gowder, Bukiety, and Hello Darling, an arcade of 15-foot-tall cherry trees, color-clumped beds of local flowers, and designer tables like this Tudors-inspired fantasy with Wedgwood and Waterford settings up on the 6th-floor china department.

Urban Source Chicago Sample Sale Fabrics

The Sample Life

Our gals at Urban Source are having their premier sample sale this Friday, Apr. 3 (11:00 to 7:00) and Saturday, Apr. 4 (10:00 to 5:00) and it looks pretty promising. Wallpapers that retail for $125 to $195 for an 11-yard roll are marked down to $40, with partial/opened rolls going for $20, and 18” slices of $45 to $145 fabrics will go quickly at $10 to $20 (sizes up to 72”, and there will also be full bolts). There is real artistry in these fabrics and papers, and myriad ways to use smaller sections—Jenny and Rose suggest covering boxes for storage, backing bookshelves, or making a headboard with the materials, and anyone can come up with something to do with a few yards of fab fabric—get crafty with it. Not so much into DIY? There will also be drapery panels and hardware, and pillows, and every purchase gets you a chance to win a design consultation or future discount. Cash only, sales final, and materials are limited. Depending on what you find, either celebrate your success or drown your sorrows a few doors west on Chicago Avenue at Relax Lounge—the stylish space has some inspiring design elements (some available at Urban Source, like these heavy metal beaded curtains.)

Get to the Point

You can’t hone your culinary skills until you hone your knives, and, let’s face it, that round raspy rod doesn’t come out of the block as often as it should now, does it? Sur La Table can help with your cutting edges all month at its free sharpening offer (two knives per customer, after that it’s $1 an inch), or, if you want to trade up, the store has a 20-40% spring cutlery sale going on specialty knives and cutting boards. Don’t expect same-day service, necessarily—I brought my blades in last year and it took a couple days, but they did a great job giving me a sharper image.

Custom Stained Glass Window from Two Fish Art Glass, Forest Park

Go Fish

Just a few more days to take advantage of Two Fish Art Glass’s 10-year anniversary sale, which continues through April 5. (A traditional decade-anniversary gift would be tin, but I think Two Fish might prefer your checkbook.) The Forest Park studio/shop sells/creates great-looking Arts and Crafts, Mission, and Prairie style glass pieces and furniture, and they’re luring customers with 20% off everything, including custom orders. If that’s not quite making you take the bait, click here for an additional five percent off.