New Media Exhibit at The Newseum
Interactive HP New Media Gallery at The Newseum focuses on new media's influence on news.
May 03, 2012
In its first permanent exhibit since 2008, the Newseum's HP New Media Gallery, which opened to the public April 27, explores the challenges that new media presents to staying on top of breaking stories. In the age of smartphones, Google Alerts, Twitter, and Facebook, many of us have come to expect of-the-moment updates on the latest news, but this can prove daunting for the press, who often struggle to address the public’s desire for immediate content delivery. The Newseum seeks to answer these quandries in this completely interactive exhibit, presented in partnership with Hewlett-Packard.
“The HP New Media gallery will give Newseum visitors a chance to step into a three-dimensional social network,” said Paul Sparrow, senior vice president of broadcasting at the Newseum. The gallery uses technology and social media tools to educate visitors about the digital news revolution through a fully interactive experience from beginning to end.
Visitors can “check in” at a station near the front of the gallery, posting photos and comments on screens around the 2,500 sq.-ft. room; guests can also move to one of the two 10-ft.-wide touch-screen-covered walls to page through the stories and videos most prominent in the digital media age. Visitors may also choose to flip through the very latest news stories as they’re posted via websites and social media outlets, creating their own news pages to be displayed on screens around the room. Motion tracking is used in interactive games, and visitors can stay constantly updated on the news through live check-in updates and Twitter feeds as they explore the rest of the gallery.
“New media allows people to connect, to discover, and to share,” said Sparrow. The new gallery at the Newseum not only allows visitors to do so on-site, but also after heading home, where they can continue the social media experience at a special website. 555 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, 888-639-7386
Interactive Home Exhibit Opens at the National Building Museum
"House & Home" explores America’s built environment through seven history-filled galleries.
May 02, 2012
The National Building Museum unveiled its House & Home exhibition April 28, exploring different elements of iconic and classic American housing through mixed media projects.
National Building Museum curator Sarah Leavitt said the exhibition will run for at least five years, offering a closer look at the nation’s built environment and the legislative infrastructure that framed the way we live. “My favorite part of the exhibit is the [Home Economics interactive] timeline,” she said. “As a historian I like the opportunity to look back and see how we got to where we are; how the population movement for housing and all the laws came to be.”
A gallery installation inside the exhibition dubbed “Making a Home,” comprises nearly 200 artifacts taking up three gallery spaces. Some of the ephemera—household items with a wide range of purposes and aesthetics—are still pertinent today while other items became obsolete long ago. “It makes a dramatic statement,” Leavitt said. With this and other curated collections, she hopes “visitors will really start thinking about where they live now, how that has changed and what that means for their own story.”
Other themed galleries include touchable architectural models and documentary footage exploring community building in unique contemporary housing developments from coast to coast. Each helps chronicle the various eras of nesting and how these behaviors fit into the ever-evolving American dream. 401 F St. NW, 202-272-2448
5 Questions with Décor Tastemaker Antoine Roset
Vice president of family-run furniture brand Ligne Roset talks new store, design tips for DC.
April 27, 2012
Vice president of the 150-year-old family-owned Ligne Roset, Antoine Roset weighs in on the furniture emporium’s signature style, the new Glover Park store, and interior design trends for spring.
How would you describe the quintessential Ligne Roset style?
ANTONIE ROSET: Ligne Roset is a high-end modern furniture company with an anti-conformity spirit.
How does this aesthetic fit in with Washington’s design sensibility?
AR: Our aesthetic is based on a subtle mix of know-how, modernism, and appreciation of the modern life. Washington is a city of history where people from all around the world are living [a life] that is definitely turned to the future. In a way, people living in DC and Ligne Roset are a great match. Now, design sensibility is personal and I hope that people in DC will appreciate our products.
What makes the Glover Park showroom stand out?
AR: At Ligne Roset we like details—and quality goes with details. I think this store [showcases] a lot of details and hope that everyone will be able to judge [the quality] for themselves. We always want to push the envelope forward—to accept challenges of new designers as well as established designers, to invest in new tools and machinery, to use our know-how and share it with the new generation, to be interested in the day-to-day [aspects] of our lives…maybe all of this makes us a bit unique.
Tell us about furniture design trends that you’re seeing right now.
AR: [I’m seeing the use of more] noble materials like wood, stone, or marble. We are seeing curves on a lot of products as well.
Do you have any insider decorating tips for DC patrons?
AR: Be yourself but don’t hesitate to add modern furniture to your décor.
The Ligne Roset showroom, open now. 2201 Wisconsin Ave. NW, 202-248-3112. Look out for its opening party, May 3. (More information, ligneroset-dc.com)
Rent the Runway CEO With Tips for Spring Gala Season
Just in time for spring gala season, Rent the Runway's Jenn Hyman dishes on top trends and how-tos.
April 24, 2012
Jenn Hyman is no stranger to red-carpet events. As co-founder and CEO of Rent the Runway, a members-only website that allows women to rent rather than purchase designer dresses and accessories for special occasions, she’s attended her fair share of parties. Hyman sat down with Capitol File to discuss some of her top tips for preparing for a black-tie affair and the trends that will be circulating faster than Champagne at galas this season.
Understand that luxury is about convenience.
“Our customer is the go-getter girl who has it all,” Hyman said. This does not, however, include an excess of time, and that’s where Rent the Runway comes in. The e-commerce site boats a plethora of designer dress options, personal styling consultations, and door-to-door delivery of styles in multiple sizes—cutting out a lot expenses, not to mention the time spent searching brick-and-mortar stores for just the right party frock.
Make getting ready an important part of the fun.
When it comes to black-tie events, Hyman is adamant that preparation is key to looking your best. To maximize comfort, she suggests cutting salty food and caffeinated beverages before an event, and says starting the celebration early—before the actual party—is part of the fun. Hyman’s personal prep routine? Relaxing with friends beforehand; playing her favorite hip-hop music; dancing and sipping cocktails.
Take a cue from top spring trends.
Hyman, who’s noticed that red always seems to be a color of choice for high-powered Washington women, suggests other bright hues—jewel tones or electric splashes of color—to stand out in the crowd. For spring 2012, she says yellow or orange gowns, as well as statement bags, will be at every gala. As for cocktail fêtes, Hyman recommends day-to-night maxi dresses, which allow women to transition from the office to events with ease throughout the summer months.
Rolls-Royce Phantom Series II: Technology & Tradition
Rolls-Royce’s new Phantom model embodies the brand’s dedication to quality and customer connection.
April 23, 2012
From connecting with their clients via private tours of their plants to throwing exclusive events for owners, Rolls-Royce is a brand that treats its customers like a close-knit family. These individual discussions with owners on what R-R stands for, what customers expect from the company and the product, and what it needs to be in order to move forward are exactly what inspired the brand’s new Phantom Series II model.
“When considering changes to our iconic Phantom, we first carefully listened to customers,” said Rolls-Royce CEO Torsten Müller-Ötvös. “Around the world they explicitly told us, ‘Do not change Phantom too much but introduce new technology where appropriate.’ And this is precisely what we have done.”
The end result is a blend of traditional and classic with modern technology that allows the Phantom to keep up with customer expectations. “It combined the spirit of its famous pedigree with superbly elegant design work, ground-breaking technology, and visionary engineering techniques,” said Müller-Ötvös.
Of note technologically are the full LED headlamps, and the completely revamped satellite navigation system with 3D landscape topography, guided view tours, and more, all on a much larger monitor. Best of all, its famous V12 direct injection engine has been updated with a new eight-speed automatic gearbox and rear differential, which results in 10-percent improved fuel consumption and reduced CO2 emissions.
The car’s appearance has also gotten a few updates. In addition to the aforementioned LED headlamps are a virtual constellation of stars in the interior, and a slightly tweaked bumper. Just as with its unparalleled customer service, the brand will go above and beyond to create a custom luxury vehicle to your specifications—from humidors to drink cabinets to constellations in the shape of your zodiac sign, virtually anything is possible.
“Since its first appearance in 2003, Phantom has reclaimed the pinnacle of automotive luxury and refinement,” said Müller-Ötvös. “It is a completely unique and unequaled achievement that goes beyond its primary role as a car and becomes to many a work of art, a fine piece of jewelry, or a rare and collectible object of desire.”
April Showers Bring Stylish Trenches
Battle unexpected spring showers with our favorite versatile trench coats.
April 20, 2012
Stacy London Shares Exclusive Style Tips
TV personality and fashion guru offers dressing advice on Westfield Style Tour.
April 18, 2012
When the ever-fabulous Stacy London breezed through Bethesda’s Montgomery Mall on April 14 as part of the Westfield Style Tour, she and her Style for Hire team eagerly offered up tips for dressing well. Read on to find out what to toss, what to embrace—and how London really feels about style on the Hill.
You’re back in DC after launching Style for Hire here in 2010. What is your take on DC’s fashion sense?
STACY LONDON: It’s a cross-section of different styles. Style has played a much bigger role in this administration. There are a lot of reasons why Michelle Obama gets compared to Jackie O. She’s paving a way for herself, showing her arms, wearing very modern designers, and it has set the tone for Washingtonians to feel like they can be a little bit more experimental.
Who would you crown “most improved” in terms of style in the political arena?
SL: That’s a tough one…. But in terms of menswear, the president is amazing. Not because he takes so many chances in color or patterns or anything, but he knows how to get a suit tailored. In menswear, it's all about micro-styling.
You provide tons of style lessons on What Not to Wear, but have you learned anything about dressing from the fashion-challenged subjects on the show?
SL: That style is never just about the clothes…especially when people are dressing in a way that doesn’t allow them to live up to their potential. It has so much more to do with the way they feel than how they look.
What do you hope shoppers will take away from meeting with you on the Westfield Style Tour?
SL: I don’t care about trends…fashion changes every six months because the idea is to get you to buy new things. How you choose to wear them? That is personal choice. I like to teach how to flatter your figure, know what is appropriate for your age and your lifestyle, and then you can plug in any trend at all. I want shoppers to understand that a mall can be their best friend as long as they’ve got a strategy… so that they can really enjoy shopping again…and feel smart about the way they have invested their money.
Don’t miss the second visit from London’s Style for Hire team at Westfield Montgomery this weekend on the lower level, center court. April 21, 12-8 PM; April 22, 12-6 PM. 7101 Democracy Blvd., Bethesda, 301-469-6000
Ultimate Outdoor Dining: 901 Restaurant & Bar
Penn Quarter spot draws diners in with large patio, double happy hour daily, and more.
April 16, 2012
Earlier this month, 901 Restaurant & Bar was one of the first DC restaurants to welcome diners al fresco with its chic outdoor porch. The Penn Quarter spot boasts one of the largest outdoor seating patios in the area—800 square feet of space, or enough for 55 diners to nosh together during lunch hour. General Manager Kelvin Nwosu says the restaurant sped up construction of the new sidewalk dining area in order to savor the early gift of beautiful weather even sooner.
If you pay a visit, try 901's renowned house-made draft beers and lager or its signature sampling plates. The restaurant touts American cuisine with an Asian twist, such as Chinese-spiced duck, Japanese tuna tempura, and its exclusive craft beer satays.
Intriguing cocktails are also on offer, such as Death by Chocolate, a concoction made with Godiva liquor and served with crushed Oreo cookies on the rim. For something with a little more punch, try the 901 Lynchburg, the bar’s version of a bourbon sour. Two different happy hours—one from 4–7:30 PM and the other from 10 PM–midnight—ensure fun under the sun or the stars. 901 Ninth St. NW, 202-524-4433
Alton Lane Offers Bespoke Tailoring
Custom clothier Alton Lane brings high-tech bespoke to Washington.
March 26, 2012
Inside Alton Lane’s new shop, in Dupont Circle
When asked why he chose Washington as the ideal place to open Alton Lane’s second custom tailoring showroom, co-owner Peyton Jenkins admits the decision was made for him. “With the significant overlap between business in New York and Washington, we already had a sizable customer base down here before we opened,” Jenkins explains. Alton Lane, which originally started with a New York showroom before adding an online tailoring business, is attempting to revolutionize the men’s clothing market, making custom clothes with a refined, modern sensibility. “Ultimately, our goal is to get our customers in perfectly fitted garments in as short a time as possible,” Jenkins says. Fusing old-world customer service (if you don’t have time to come in, just send in a jacket you like, and they will make it for you in any swatch) and modern technology, including a 3-D body scan, Alton Lane may just have Modern Bespoke down to a science. 1506 19th St. NW, 646-896-1212
A Briefcase Built to Last
Sterling & Burke has Washington’s elite traveling in style this Spring.
March 12, 2012
Celebrating the first anniversary of its brick-and-mortar shop, Sterling & Burke is easily among local denizens’ first considerations for luxurious leather goods. “We are surrounded by a very eclectic and sophisticated group of city dwellers,” says Alexandra Jeffrey, manager of product development for the brand, “and realize the need for special, one-of-a-kind pieces.” In addition to the recently relaunched J.W. Hulme—a brand developed in part to create tents for soldiers in World War I—Sterling & Burke carries distinguished British label Swaine Adeney Brigg. Endowed with a Royal Warrant from Queen Victoria—an official seal of approval that acts as a declaration of quality for the generations-old English company—Swaine Adeney Brigg’s 250 years of craftsmanship is hand-stitched into every article of its collection. “The ultimate luxury for frequent business travelers are the brand’s attaché cases,” says Jeffrey. Using English bridle leather, artisans in London employ a rigorous tanning process to produce the durable frame that ensures important documents, along with your iPad, arrive safe and with style.
2824 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, 202-333-2266.
Celebrating the White House Correspondents’ Association’s annual dinner at Carnegie Library.