Hi and welcome to the creative mind of Brooklyn-based interior design firm, Ishka Designs.
This blog allows you to peek behind the scenes of our design process; see the images, products, and events that inspire and motivate us. We are happily biased towards interior design topics with a sustainable undertone. With our international backgrounds, we definitely embrace a global perspective and influence. We hope you are inspired and sometimes provoked by our postings and we look forward to reading and responding to your comments!

One love, idi


Crushing on Red from Fall and elsewhere

I don't usually go for red but I've been struck by the fabulousness of the color of late.  I am currently itching to specify these GORGEOUS pieces from twitter friend Kathe Fraga and 1st Dibs...
Kalena by Kathe Fraga (source: www.kathefraga.com)
Joyful Garden by Kathe Fraga
Red end tables from 1st Dibs (if only they could work in my space!!!)
Source: www.1stdibs.com
red lacquered table found on 1st dibs
and to wear these numbers from Marchesa, Prabal Gurung, BCBG Max Azria, and Y-3...
So in love! Marchesa F2011
source: catwalking photography NY Times
Marchesa just beautiful! And the shoes...
More Marchesa gorgeousness
Prabal Gurung Fall2011
Source: catwalking photography for NY Times
Same dress back view top right.
A great transition piece from BCBG Max Azria: summer (minus the turtleneck and paired with some rugged sandals) to this look for fall
Source: catwalking photography for NY Times 
Structured but loose - BCBG Max Azria Fall 2011
Y-3 Fall 2011
Source: catwalking photography for NY Times
So red and it's accents of pink, black, and turquoise are definitely inspiring me.  Can you say the same?



How Cute!

Call me silly, but I am fascinated by this naŃ—f portraiture rug from CB2 called Doce Caras (12 faces).  At first glance they kinda look angry, but they are really grinning.  Dying!  Anyhow, according to the website the rug is part of a collaboration between furniture retailer CB2 and San Francisco's Creativity Explored, a non-profit visual arts center where artists with developmental disabilities create, exhibit and sell art.  This rug was designed by Pablo Calderon from El Salvador.  Now isn't this the most adorable rug ever?
source: www.cb2.com

source: www.cb2.com


The Cellar Project Part 1: A Cool Escape

It's cold.  Really really cold.  So we honestly don't mind being indoors, much less buried a few feet below ground.  So lucky us to be working on converting a rough, bare, dusty cellar into a modern open and inviting entertainment space.  With an interesting sunken portion that gives the space a lot of headroom, we figured we could change the "swimming pool" feel into an ever-so-fresh den by removing the community metal railings, introducing wood to soften up the space but yet contrasting it with concrete and exposed brick.
Stairs leading down into the cellar
On the landing/cellar "foyer" looking into sunken area 
View from sunken area - looking at landing, boiler room, and other mechanical room
Future focal point
Under the stairs that lead up into the house
All photos above by Niya Bascom Photography
We settled on a cool palette to contrast the warm more elegant design solution we created a while back for the rest of the house.  At the get go, what really got our juices flowing was our clients' expressed interest in concrete floors.  The idea brought to mind a project I fell in love with last year when posted on the New York Times and became part of the inspiration for the project.  A look at our inspiration board:
Our Cool Escape concept - blue, white, open juxtaposing a rough edge
Love the contrast of soft white snow, blue skies and water against the cool texture of the cinder block and concrete
We are still very much in progress on the space, working out some media details such as equipment location and future potential usage.  All this to make sure the built-in solution is thoroughly designed.  This is the interesting part of the job really as there is a lot of collaboration with the AV guru (co-axial cable, ports, etc are so not our area of expertise), our awesome clients and us.  Once all of that is sorted out, we get to have a ton of fun detailing the cabinetry so it all gets tucked away nicely.  Can't wait to see how it all eventually unfolds...



Work got in the way: NYIGF Part 2

So I completely missed out on the Pier 94 section of the New York International Gift Fair.  Totally bummed about it :(  But alas, the year is young and there are quite a few more trade shows to go.  I did manage to get a whole 20 minutes more in at the Javits center.  I recalled from the previous day spent that there were a couple of really cute nursery stuff I'd seen but had not explored.  And since I am expecting my first niece (got you there didn't I??? LOL) and was recently asked about the possibility of doing a nursery I thought I'd revisit that section again.  The stand out for me was the eco-friendly line of Merben International.  Beautiful eco-friendly materials such as felt are used to create beautiful rugs, blankets cushions and toys for the little ones.  My favorites were the super soft felt rug, the piglets made from left-over mama pig fabric and the toolbox  .
a soft and FUN experience for any little one!
piglets made from fabric of left over mama pig!
Tools and tool box made of felt! There was a saw, wrench...and the tool box can be used to carry other items too...so cute.
Another interesting find, more so for the metal craftsmanship, was These Creatures.  While I only captured this beautiful feeding station, there were other interesting things happening in the booth and on their website, including retail store fixtures and custom furniture capability.  Check them out.
great addition to the home of any decor sensitive pet owner
And that's it :(  I promise...more to come later this year when I visit Brooklyn Designs, AD Home Show and ICFF.


Fashion Fair Inspiration: Celebrating Eunice Johnson

source: www.ebonyjet.com
I had just caught the bus at Herald Square late yesterday afternoon.  I was in a mad rush to try and catch the last of the New York International Gift Fair at the Javits Center after a day of meetings, phone calls, emails, and site inspections.  As we took off down 34th Street, seating myself on the Macy's side of the bus, something caught my attention.  Well maybe I should re-phrase... something jolted me into a reaction akin to those "eureka!" moments best left for the likes of geniuses and such.  Ok, so I am not about to tell you that I discovered the cure for cancer or anything dramatic like that.  A lot simpler and a bit shallow, if I must really admit it, but if you are a visual person and fashion yourself an artist, you may understand what I am about to say.  What I saw in the Macy's display window so vividly grabbed my attention that for the next 10 minutes or so on the bus I was literally caught up in an amazing dream-like experience (I suppose you'd call it an inspirational wave of sorts).  So what caught my attention you ask?  Well, this little beauty I say:
mine...all mine!!!
Isn't she divine?!?  Well I sure thought so...so much so that I began to envision myself getting ready to walk down the aisle, the red carpet, you name it, with my hair piled high on my head, make-up done to a tee by Petra Alexander, and just well you know...having a moment.  A helluva one!
source: www.petraalexander.com
Anyhow, after catching about 20 minutes at the Javits, missing Pier 94 altogether (more on that), I decided I needed to head back over to Macy's to investigate the stunner.  I mean, this dress just had to be mine no matter what.  Dying with excitement and anticipation I walk up to the window, calculating how many projects I need to work on to pay off for the dress, and there in small print reads the words "archived collection".  Disappointed?  To say the least.  Feeling slighted?  Not at all.  As disappointment dissipated I realized I was discovering something wonderful: Eunice Johnson.  Co-founder of Ebony and Jet magazines, creater of Fashion Fair cosmetics (which I probably never used) and it's namesake, the Fashion Fair travelling show.  Read more about Eunice Johnson in the New York Times and at Ebony magazine.  A fashion and media-icon, trail blazer, and a definite inspiration to female entrepreneurs.  
exquisite detailing on the bodice and skirt 
my second favourite!  stunning orange applique with sheer inserts...can you say HOTTTTT!!!!!!!!
in love.
It's black history month here in the United States.  Who are you celebrating?