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Everything Beautifully at Hand: Aesthetic Desk Organizers for Everyday Necessities

A writing desk with handmade desk furnishings by Parvum Opus
On my desk, three new pencil holders in varying shapes and sizes, filled with useful things. The pocket celestial globe is by Julia Forte, the tortoise shell boxes, framed drawing and architectural fragment are from Hilary Fisher in London, and the lampshade is by Fermoie. The bronze vide poche is by Line Vautrin, and the marble Roman bath is from Spitalfields House.

Spring has arrived and with it comes a new selection of desk organizers at Parvum Opus. It may not surprise you to learn that I adore small, everyday functional things. There's an intimacy to using and designing utilitarian objects, and believe that even the smallest thing, when beautifully designed, can enhance our daily lives. I've created two new desk caddy variations to go along with my hexagonal pencil cups, and these are now available to order in any pattern on our website. The first features a graceful tapered shape with a wavy edge, and the second is a pyramidal piece with a sculptural presence.

It's wonderful to be thoughtful about the things that we use everyday, and when I can find or build a creative way to corral quotidian necessities, it makes me happy. I love a writing desk or reading corner with a spot for books, a cup of tea, a place to keep reading glasses, bookmarks and pencils for scribbling brilliant (haha) thoughts in the margins. On my desks, I like to keep several pencil cups or caddies full of writing and other desk tools. These are equally handy on night tables, in the kitchen, on hallway entry tables and more.

A ribbon board with a clipping showing a library table in Milan, designed by Studio Peregalli
On the wall just a few feet from my studio work table lives this image, clipped from a magazine several years ago. It features a fabulous library in Milan designed by Studio Peregalli.

The magazine clipping shown above has been living a few feet from the work tables in my studio for several years now, and it never fails to inspire me. It's a view of a library designed by Studio Peregalli, and I'm sorry I can't remember the magazine in which it appeared originally, but I believe it also appears in the book The Invention of the Past: Interior Design and Architecture of Studio Peregalli by Laura Sartori Rimini and Roberto Peregalli. I absolutely adore looking at the collection of things both functional and aesthetic that marches down the center of this beautiful library table. This collection of objects creates a portrait of the people to whom this library belongs, just as the things that surround us in our own homes describe and define us. Can you spy the cups filled with pens and pencils? When I'm designing my own pencil holders, I like to think of them as companions for such an array, adding a bit of texture and pattern to a collection that will in turn reflect the person who uses them.

 A table of necessities from Howard Slatkin's home in New York.
Howard Slatkin's dressing room, with its wonderful table of necessities. From New York Social Diary, 2014

There's another image that I come back to again and again, which you may find a bit unusual given my penchant for desks and libraries. It's a photo I saw in a post on New York Social Diary back in 2014, featuring designer Howard Slatkin's New York apartment. If you enjoy a maximalist interior, you'll enjoy a look back at this article, but the photo above was the one that particularly caught my eye. It's a small table in his dressing room, carefully arranged with baskets and trays containing all the things a gentleman might need in the city. I am neither a gentleman nor a New Yorker, but when I saw this photo, I felt an immediate spark of recognition and appreciation. The beauty here lies in the careful consideration of what might simplify and enhance one's daily activities: I imagine that if we all took on a small project like this, every one of us would end up with a different but equally interesting composition.

A hall table with a place for everyday necessities, by Parvum Opus
The hall near our back door, where a wave edged pencil cup holds pens, the house key and sunglasses. Among the collection of objects is a small sculpture by Kevin Cendejas, paintings by Walker Walls Tarver, a tray from La Tuile à Loup, and a vintage travel desk from Gucci.

A writing desk with handmade desk furnishings by Parvum Opus
Another desk view, this time in a lilac theme with one of my hexagonal pencil cups and a matching desk caddy. The hand-marbled paper here is by Renato Crepaldi, and the small seashell inkwell is antique Ginori.

Desk furnishings by Parvum Opus shown on a library table.
On the table in our library, a trio of malachite green desk caddies made a few years ago for Pentreath & Hall.

Desk caddies by Parvum Opus, in situ on a library table.
One of my new pyramidal pencil cups in an Italian lemon printed paper, sitting companionably among the desk things in the library. The blue 'S' brush pot is by Bridie Hall, and the metal flowers are by Verde Rame.

It's always great fun to design and build new pieces for the Parvum Opus collection, and it's truly my privilege to make desk organizers that will provide both beauty and utility for you. The possessions in our homes reflect and shape our identities, and whatever you choose to collect, I hope that you'll be inspired to create special places for your own everyday things.

The artist's signature

Souvenir is the blog for Parvum Opus, an artist-run studio specializing in artistic decorative objects and home furnishings. We welcome your thoughts! Comment below to join the conversation, and if you enjoyed this, don't forget to subscribe to receive an email when we publish new posts.


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