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He makes scents

THE SCOUT

May 17, 2007|David A. Keeps | Times Staff Writer

WEARING a cashmere jacket and velvet slippers embroidered with skulls, interior designer Michael S. Smith opened the doors to his Bel-Air manse recently for the launch of his home fragrance collection for Agraria, which included the orange flower water and lily of the valley Palma candle and diffusers set out in his drawing room. "I was thinking of Grace Kelly driving a convertible through the south of France in spring," the 42-year-old Newport Beach native said. Angkor, his other aromatic creation, has the exotic air of citrus, smoky tea and ginger. Smith, who designs furniture, fabrics and even faucets as eye candy for clients such as Steven Spielberg, said partnering with the San Francisco company that made its mark with potpourri in the 1970s smelled like team spirit. "Agraria didn't approach me," he joked. "I stalked them." Palma and Angkor can be purchased as candles ($50), AirEssence diffusers ($95) and fragrance sheets ($28) from Saks Fifth Avenue, 9600 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills, (310) 275-4211, or at www.agrariahome.com.

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OPENING

Downtown style, Valley locale

Far off the beaten design track, the new Van Nuys showroom Rezon8 Living carries contemporary furnishings heavy on the espresso stain and light on the wallet. Along with versions of familiar 20th century designs by Eileen Gray and Charles Eames, the 10,000-square-foot space has simple, handsome oak veneer tables, bamboo plywood bedroom suites and a gallery of dining chairs and table lamps. The more stylish buys shown here include the four-panel stitched leather Euro screen ($498), the chrome-framed Landon armchair with piped faux suede upholstery ($478) and the 7-by-10-foot wool blend Ronaldo shag ($1,428). The Deco-inspired Scion lamp (set of two, $178) sits atop the rolling Alden end table ($268). 7900 Haskell Ave., (818) 728-1800.

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MADE IN CALIFORNIA

Eye this pod: It's a vase

Though he is known for large-scale cast concrete pavers and planters, Santa Monica-based artisan Daniel Ogassian sometimes thinks small. The painstaking process of creating custom-made outdoor planters led him to design smaller ceramic versions as tabletop vases. Produced in limited editions of 100, Ogassian's Edamame collection consists of three designs. Two of them have a single hole for flowers and cost $100. The Pod-3, shown here, is 13 1/2 inches long and 5 inches wide and sells for $111. All pieces are stoneware with a white translucent glaze. Available at Denizen Design Gallery, 8600 Venice Blvd., Los Angeles; (310) 838-1959. To view other work by the designer, go to www.ogassian.com.

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INNOVATIONS

DIYers, stick up for yourselves

Tool-averse homeowners and loft leaseholders, meet the latest easy-does-it window treatment: Umbra's Stickup Rod. Designed by Lawrence Chu, the piece employs a clever hook with a cling film that attaches to windows and other glossy surfaces without adhesive. Sturdier and more attractive than suction cups, the peel-and-stick hook holds a streamline curved bracket and rod in metallic nickel (shown here) or bronze, ideal solutions for sheers and lightweight panels. A set of three brackets is $22; it can be purchased with a rod that adjusts from 28 to 48 inches ($33) or a rod that's 48 to 88 inches ($44). Available at Plushpod, 8211 W. 3rd St., Los Angeles, (323) 951-0748, or through www.umbra.com/ustore/home.do (enter "Stickup" in the search window).

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Reaching the Scout: Submit suggestions to the Home section, 202 W. 1st St., Los Angeles, CA 90012; \o7home@latimes.com\f7.

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