From the Editor: Inside the April Issue

By Jennifer Dulin Wiley
In Culture

4_April_2014_cover_typeI have a feeling I’m not the only one who—once settled into a new space—wants to completely change it up. There’s something so refreshing about altering the vibe or setup of your home, especially come springtime. Case in point: Once I was in my St. Louis Hills house for about a year and a half, I was ready for a change. So we recently rearranged our main living area, adding new artwork and making more room for my now 8-month-old son.

Although my little project doesn’t even come close to comparing to the major transformations led by the four stylish STL homeowners featured in this issue, I feel like I have a small taste of the type of design rush these St. Louisans no doubt felt as they progressed from concept and planning to full-on execution mode and ultimate home satisfaction. From the mid-century firehouse-turned-livework- space of local photographers Aaron and Heather Hawes (also featured on HGTV’s “House Hunters”) to a full-on historical restoration of a Lafayette Square residence (the owners went so far as to find a woodworker who could mimic the historic butterfly moulding throughout), each project has a unique personality that speaks to the way these stylish St. Louisans live—and will perhaps even inspire you to take on a little home project of your own.

I’m sure the planning and design process for renowned art dealer William Shearburn to get his newly opened William Shearburn Gallery in the Dorchester up and running was a similarly intoxicating experience. Though it’s not his living space in the traditional sense, it’s obvious Shearburn is right at home in the gallery setting, stating in our feature that he hated not having a public space in the short time that he operated a private gallery. The new gallery opens with a group show this month, so be sure you’re among the first to experience it.

If you didn’t get to experience the musical genius of piano-rocker Ben Folds the last time he made his way to town to perform orchestral versions of his greatest hits with the St. Louis Symphony, then mark your calendar now for his live shows at Powell Hall, April 12-13. We caught up with the musician in advance of his STL show to talk about everything from his newly written concerto to his involvement in the Artist Committee of Americans for the Arts and his recent role on “The Sing-Off.” His quick wit and passion for the arts were undeniable, and his candid answer about his somewhat unorthodox approach to symphony performing was one of my favorite parts of the interview. An exclusive Q&A with internationally recognized designer Rebecca Minkoff marks the second high-profile interview we were able to snag for this issue. The fashion trendsetter was more than happy to give us the lowdown on her upcoming runway show at Saks Fifth Avenue on April 24, part of the must-attend Saint Louis Fashion Week lineup that runs April 23-25. The premier STL fashion event has lots in the works for the upcoming season, including a charitable show at the Saint Louis Galleria on April 23 benefiting Friends of Wings, a new home for the finale show on April 25 at the recently renovated Union Station (featuring “Project Runway All Star” Viktor Luna and local design house Skif ), and a hot finale show after-party with entertainment by Nee, DJ TrashTalk and DJ Billy Brown. ALIVE’s Style Notes blog will be packed with up-to-the-minute coverage from the event, and don’t forget to follow the conversation at #STLFW. Front row seats for select shows are available, but are very limited, so get your tickets now if you want to join me on the most enviable spots of the runways.

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