Brock Galerie owners Cameron Smith, above left, and Tom Kurthy are not graduates of the refinishing school of modern furniture. "We like to find things in a weathered state and not mess with it," Smith says. "Leaving something in its original condition is the best tribute to its beauty." In the new showroom where major 20th century European designs mix with brawny industrial pieces, the leather webbing on rare chairs by Alvar Aalto and Bruno Mathsson is mottled with age. Red leather Seagull chairs by Arne Jacobsen are handsomely burnished. Other offerings include a 1964 Vico Magistretti lamp and Arne Jacobsen chair, above, and a table lamp made from a reclaimed globe street light, and steel factory furniture, left. 603 N. La Brea Ave., Los Angeles; (323) 272-3820; www.brockgalerie.com.
L.A. designer Barclay Butera has refashioned drawings by Julia Morgan, the architect of Hearst Castle, for a line of luxury pillows. The four patterns in the Casa del Monte series are based on pencil sketches that Morgan prepared for gilded plaster relief panels for the bedroom ceilings of Casa del Mar, one of the guesthouses at William Randolph Hearst's estate at San Simeon. The sea horse shown here is 22 inches square and printed on Belgian linen with a blue silk backing. It is $435 at Barclay Butera Home, 169 N. La Brea Ave., Los Angeles; (323) 634-0200; www.barclaybutera.com.
An able prop for Jack Be Nimble
When the lights go out, most folks fumble for a candle or a flashlight. Now, thanks to designer David Weeks, they can have both. The Brooklyn-based designer known for his sculptural lighting fixtures has created Castlight, an LED flashlight built into the base of a classic candlestick. A twist of the rubberized grip turns on the light, which operates on three AA batteries and has a modern slate-gray finish. The piece, manufactured by the home accessories firm Kikkerland, is $45 at Zipper, 8316 W. 3rd St., Los Angeles; (323) 951-0620.
If you could tear your eyes off the adorable Labrador in "Marley & Me," you might notice a fanciful wall hanging in the residences of John Grogan, author of the bestselling book about one man's best friend. This Tree of Life plaque is an ancient symbol of heaven and earth, here rendered by artisans in Haiti who hammer and chisel recycled metal from oil drums into decorative arbors with five birds. The piece is nearly 3 feet in diameter and sells for $324 at www.vivaterra.com; (800) 233-6011.
-- David A. Keeps