rare device

by Grace Bonney

Rena of Rare Device is the go-to girl for the scoop on the newest independent designers in home, fashion, and stationery.

1 ~ what’s your name, shop name, and shop location…
Rena Tom
Rare Device in Park Slope, Brooklyn

2 ~ tell us about some of the objects in your display…
Let’s see, the leather bag is by Kristen Aronsson, the lamp is by Re-Surface (Donna Brady), both ladies are from Brooklyn. The bird vase is by Joanna Mendicino, she is in California. The bowl is by Aida Dirse from Lithuania. The succulent is a xmas present from Laurice Curran, my friend and one of our jewelry designers, and it supposedly thrives on neglect (so it will be perfect at the shop!)…and the woven basket is from my mom and people are constantly trying to buy it off me. The coral-like fabric is a remnant from Baltic Bazaar in Brooklyn, I get lots of fabric displays for the shop there.

3 ~ describe the mood, what inspired you, or what you intended when creating/arranging these pieces…
Sort of going for lots of texture, the plant really lends it a California vibe. Whimsical, easygoing modern decor and accessories. The things in this display are not too precious, and we like the light in the window when it gets dark out so early in winter.

4 ~ what are 3 objects/pieces sold in your store that you are dying to have or… you already have and love…
Hmmm…I want a huge stack of the little 14K stacking rings by Amy Tavern and the stainless steel laser-etched mobile by Polli – shiny things for dark winter days! And I have some clothing from Talla that is the easiest thing to wear…

5 ~ list three things that provide you with inspiration…
~ The online crafty community – the ultimate friend-making, networking, emotional support, and sales machine.
~ The mix CDs that my friend Jack makes for the store – I wish I could sell them.
~ And, color as a mood-setter and mood-lifter. I have mild synasthesia so I am a color fanatic.

extra tidbit…
Rare Device has hosted some amazing shows at their Brooklyn shop. A custom window display, as well as smaller displays within the store, are created by the designer whose work is being highlighted. Some recent shows included Jill Bliss, Lena Corwin, and Deadly Squire.

Suggested For You


Leave a Reply

Design*Sponge reserves the right to restrict comments that do not contribute constructively to the conversation at hand, that comment on people's physical appearance, contain profanity, personal attacks, hate speech or seek to promote a personal or unrelated business. Our goal is to create a safe space where everyone (commenters, subjects of posts and moderators) feels comfortable to speak. Please treat others the way you would like to be treated and be willing to take responsibility for the impact your words may have on others. Disagreement, differences of opinion and heated discussion are welcome, but comments that do not seek to have a mature and constructive dialogue will not be published. We moderate all comments with great care and do not delete any lightly. Please note that our team (writers, moderators and guests) deserve the same right to speak and respond as you do, and your comments may be responded to or disagreed with. These guidelines help us maintain a safe space and work toward our goal of connecting with and learning from each other.