Leafing through New York Magazine’s recent “Design” issue, I was pleased to see another instance of design really hitting the mainstream. Of course, “design” is such a general term, meaning many things to many people. The magazine tackled this broad subject with aplomb, highlighting a broad spectrum of design talent such as decorator Mario Buatta, textile designer Jack Lenor Larson, and art director Fabien Baron. Even Martha Stewart was recognized for her contributions to making the world ever-so, channeling her talents as a hostess into a the idea of a “designed life.”Of course I was pleased to see the ’72 Map celebrated loud & proud in a great article about Massimo Vignelli and his wife/partner Lella. I know I’ve been on a recent Vignelli kick lately, but there was too much going on to ignore. How could I not be pleased to read an article about a legendary husband and wife design team who have a fantastic design office based in their home, creating an inspiring space?Make that a design office with black floors.Massimo at his desk.Sheri at her desk.

As some of you might know, our black floors were a huge source of stress ever since our studio’s renovation, due in large part to our inept contractor’s butchering of them during refinishing. While the Vignelli’s floor appear to be constructed of wide-paneled planks, appearing to be flawless — I have come to appreciate our black floor’s irregular quality. They accomplish exactly what I had intended: their deep reflection helps to create a sense of depth, helping to make our modestly-sized studio appear more grand in scale. I hope black floors are more than just a coincidence. Perhaps they’re an indicator of an inspired working environment. Or at least the start of a “designed life.”