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Designer Jonathan Adler began his career making pottery in Rhode Island, then went on to work at a New York talent agency, where he became “deeply depressed.” Adler soon returned to pottery and struck gold when Barneys began ordering his wares (thanks, in no small measure, to life partner Simon Doonan’s gentle influence); the rest, of course, is retail history. Since opening his cheerful Manhattan store in 1998, later followed by outposts in Los Angeles and Miami, Adler has expanded his considerable talents to furniture and a wide array of home and personal accessories like bed and bath linens. Adler’s style, especially in furniture design, seems consistent with many other home stores in Soho, but his sixties-modern look out-mods the rest, particularly when accompanied by his funky (and often witty) collection of lamps, ceramics, pillows and other objets d'art. After all, where else can one find festive ceramic canisters specially labeled Quaaludes, Uppers, and Downers? The Soho store’s walls are imprinted with the names of Adler’s muses, which include David Hicks, Alexander Girard, Bonnie Cashin, Andy Warhol, Leroy Neiman, Fornasetti, and Bjorn Wiinbladd.
Adler continues to stock his distinctive ceramics in bright colors; the jade-glazed pottery is especially popular, as are the boldly patterned bedding and pillows.