A Riverside Mecca of Design and Art: Hudson, NY
Hudson is small riverside town of about 6,000 people that has evolved into an art and design mecca in Upstate New York. From its origins as a riverside port to a less-than-savory period in the first half of the 20th Century when it was better known for gambling and prostitution, Hudson has undergone an amazing revival. Up and down the main thoroughfare — Warren Street — there are dozens of art galleries, antique shops and home design and decor stores. Add to the mix a vibrant arts scene, some fabulous restaurants, bakeries and coffee shops and it’s the perfect place for an Upstate weekend. Homedit spent a beautiful Saturday in Hudson exploring the home decor offerings, both vintage and new.
We started at the top of Warren Street near the town square, at Valley Variety, because they carry Bensen Furniture, which we saw at ICFF 2016. And, we wanted another look. Owner Chuck Rosenthal started Valley Variety in 2012, after 17 years as the principal of a San Francisco graphic design and marketing firm. The store is full of beautifully designed furniture and accessories for your home and includes a chef’s kitchen and patio where events, classes, and presentations are offered.
This lovely grouping includes Bensen pieces, such as the Morgan sofa, and U Turn chair. Bensen was founded by Danish-born Niels Bendtsen in 1981. He is known for his affordable, high quality, and elegant designs. The coffee table is a Valley Variety exclusive produced in the Hudson Valley. It’s a classic mid-century design rendered current with the accent color inside. The Bucket stool is made in Cape Town, South Africa from recycled steel and Birch plywood. The upholstered, removable top lets you stash your clutter inside.
This large wood pendant is from Minima Lighting, designed by timber architectural designer Jacques Cronje in Cape Town, South Africa. Each piece is designed to clip together using only the opposing forces of tension and compression. The intricate shapes are cut from fine grained Birch Plywood, hand-finished, and coated with a low VOC water-based sealant.
Here, the Morgan sofa by Bensen is paired with the Fireside Bench (which can also act as a coffee table) by Peg Woodworking. We’re already fans of Peg, having seen designer Kate Casey most recently at Brooklyn Design. Her artful pieces combine materials, hand made joinery, Danish cord weaving, crochet, macrame and shaker techniques. On the right are two Around tables, also by Bensen.
This whimsical pendant light is also from Pedersen & Lennard of Cape Town South Africa. The galvanized steel bucket is powder-coated and also comes in red, yellow, white and black.
The 2 Do Credenza from Valley Variety is customizable with three or four drawers on a skateboard castor base with lockable wheels. We just love the different designs on the sides and the ability to mix! The unit is made from Birch plywood sealed with natural beeswax.
On a recommendation from Chick Rosenthal from Valley Variety, we headed straight for Fern Handcrafted Furniture, which creates bench-crafted studio furniture. Founded by Jason Roskey and Maggie Goudsmit in 2009 in Brooklyn, the company now has a studio and a retail showroom in Hudson. The duo uses sustainable practices to design and make gorgeous contemporary furniture that will last for generations.
This is the Hunting Chair, made from White Oak paired with oxblood saddle leather upholstery. The chair is also available in black walnut (natural, oxidized or ebonized), claro walnut and cherry. You can have it upholstered in saddle leathers, Maharam mohair or tweeds.
Fern’s Founders Dining Table is a modern take on a Sawbuck table. It has mortise and tenon joinery and your choice of a hexagonal or rectangular top. You can even order one in a 12-foot length! Certainly big enough for your next holiday dinner, no? This beautiful table is paired with the Sawyer Dining Chair, which has a hand-carved seat and oversized stretchers.
We were loving this Barton Side Table. mainly because of its saddle leather magazine shelf. The zero-hardware, dovetailed drawer is a design bonus, adding to the clean look of the piece.
Next we stopped in at beautiful gray palette that only serves to highlight their offerings. The store features local, hand-made goods and a an expertly curated collection of vintage and modern goods for the home. Created by Andrew Arrack luxury fashion leader and driving force for design houses Yves Saint Laurent, Celine, Carolina Herrera and Vera Wang, Finch brings a truly unique collection of pieces that will help you express your personal style. Together with partner Michael Hofemann, Arrack has created a delightful shop.
As soon as we walked into the shop, we were met by the stunning chairs. Something about their elegant shape and bright –but sophisticated — shade of blue draws you in to the space. Paired with this graphic rug, they’re perfect.
Next up was Foley & Cox Home, a design and home furnishings company that maintains showrooms in New York City and Hudson. The store offers fine antiques and home luxuries from global artisans featuring special European and American antique furniture. The shop also carries custom upholstered furniture, contemporary art and varied accessories. Folly & Cox was founded by Mary Foley and Michael Cox, design experts who have been working for more than 15 years on residential projects, luxe yachts, and private aircraft interiors.
The Arch Top Lantern has five arms and features graceful curves, in a brushed pewter finish. We love how it is a chandelier inside a glass enclosure.
This casual grouping features some very elegant pieces, such as the Vintage Tub Chair, which is a mid century design, newly upholstered in a, wool plaid. It has a mahogany wood frame and rolling brass castors. Also shown is the Arden Cocktail Table, an art deco-inspired design with a lacquered crushed bamboo top and teak base.
Next up: Hudson Home, with its serene ambiance and wide range of home furnishings and accessories the reflect theo owners’ love of nature, travel, history and “all things modern.”
Touches of nature give the store an organic backdrop for all of the versatile, comfortable pieces. The design of this large sofa comprises just two pieces and is invitingly overstuffed and casual. Bring on the popcorn and Netflix!
This fabulous chair practically begs you to plop down! The raw-edge detailing and leather arm patches remind you of your that favorite sweater that’s so comfortable you just can’t part with it.
This dining combo is decidedly upscale in a comfortable and casual way. The long table is paired with three high-back dining chairs as well as a bench, which has plentiful padding and a back support to encourage lingering at the table with family and friends. A long, modern light fixture draws your attention with its clean lines and long bulbs, that look like inverted candlesticks.
This versatile grouping (which includes the previously shown chairs) is elevated with the careful selection of accessories. A pop of color from the pillows and interesting lamp shapes bring a neutral palette from blah to beautiful. The paragon of two different side tables is also a smart move to keep the grouping from looking too matchy-matchy.
A rough hewn bench and sleek gray table make a perfect pair, especially when featuring colorful accessories like the decorative vessels or the colorful lamp.
Hudson Supermarket drew us in with its eclectic window display. Once inside, we found a huge space (it really was a former supermarket) chock full of furnishings and decor from just about every era of design. The store features pieces from a wide range of dealers.
Another great find — these of Milo Baughman chrome cantilevered lounge chairs. They’re covered in the original vintage chartreuse fabric.
George Nelson’s 1958 “Coconut” Chair is a winner for just about any space. Its triangular fiberglass body is formed into a cupped shape, cushioned and upholstered leather. The chair has three tubular aluminum legs.
If you’re a fan of retro pieces, you’ll love these. The graphic upholstery in statement-making colors, along with pieces like the modern wood sculpted coffee table by Dick Shanley and Jacob Kjaer Teak Danish Rocker.
We adore beautiful wood pieces so Chris Lehrecke was a must for our Hudson visit. Designing since 1982, Lehrecke is now based in the Hudson Valley where he sources local woods such as walnut, cherry, ash, maple, oak, hickory, and butternut. The award winning designer’s work is in the Brooklyn Museum’s permanent collection and the museum also bestowed on him its Modernism/Young Designer Award in 1997.
The first thing to catch your eye are the lamps from his Veneer Shade collection. The darker, back end of the shop is the perfect place to appreciate the gorgeous wood grain of these simple yet stunning lamps. The are available in a variety of sizes and a floor lamp model.
Here several of the Veneer Shade Lamps sit atop this gorgeously long live-edge console table. the powder coated metal base give it a modern touch that keeps the style current. Alongside is the Lehrecke’s Classic Stool which is one of our favorites.
Is it a footstool? An occasional stool? A decorative piece? Whatever you want to call it, it’s fantastic. Made of endless layers of plywood manipulated into a finish that resembles burled wood grain, it’s truly a work of art.
No visit to Hudson would be complete without a visit to Lilli & Loo. It carries home furnishings, decor, art and useful objects for the home. We love its worldly, stylish and sophisticated collections and if you like paper goods and well-designed little gifts and pieces, you’ll adore this shop too. It actually occupies three adjoining 19th century buildings, and each of the 15 rooms feels like you’re browsing in someone’s wildly stylish home.
Here’s an artful living room grouping that features a very versatile tufted sofa and clean-lined coffee table. The table lamps is especially interesting because while it looks like a substantial layered wood base, it’s actually only an inch or two thick when viewed from the side.
This unique settee with stud detailing and a rather royal looking profile paired with a small trunk is a useful seating option for a small space, corner or nook.
Magnificent accessories can easily elevate a space, whether it’s a commanding piece of wall decor or a large vase, with your favorite botanical stems bursting forth. A mirrored screen also adds cachet and helps enlarge a compact room.
It’s easy to spend quite a bit of time in Regan & Smith Antiques, with all the great pieces to marvel over. The shop has an eclectic mix of furniture, lighting, and objects, with a focus on mid-20th century items.
What a pair! A spectacular pop of color for any room, these upholstered Moroccan stools are just beautiful. The detail of the design is lovely and the legs are particularly nice, capped off with red ball feet.
This excellent table would be a grand choice for someone who loves reading. Besides being an interesting piece from a design standpoint, the five separate shelves offer ample room to stash books and magazines.
We were crushing on this pair of shiny modern table lamps that look almost like a space-age venus flytrap. The futuristic metal design, capped off with silver-topped bulbs, emits a subtle glow.
Before calling it a day, we couldn’t leave without stopping into TK Home and Garden to have a look at its collection of furnishings, accessories, original art, new and reproduction furniture and accent pieces, as well as vintage and antique items. Founded by Tessy Keller and her husband Jay Neuschatz, TK Home is an eclectic and enticing mix of things for your home and garden.
This is a great display of glass pendant lighting of various shapes and styles. The stairs lead to the second floor, which features art shows and additional vintage furnishings.
The back section of the store is a very happy space, featuring mostly decor items for home and garden. The mix of items is very engaging and it’s hard to leave without a bag full of purchases!
A weathered wood table serves as an unexpected base for glassware. Flanked by two tea carts, it’s a substantial piece that would be great in a dining or living area. Speaking of tea carts, we love them for their versatility and design, and TK Home has a number of lovely designs. Used to display items, as a home base for serving coffee, or as a bar, a tea cart is a wonderful thing.
While we covered a lot of ground in Hudson, we barely made a dent in the number of design and antique stores you could visit in Hudson. It’s no wonder that New York City residents escape to this artful river town for the day or the weekend because there’s plenty here to do and see. We’r ready to go back soon!