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06.25.2008 - Chicago Reader - Best of Chicago: Shopping :
Best Furniture Store - Reader's Choice: Verde Design Studio

Many of the upholstered pieces and case you'll find at this Bucktown shop are designed by owner Michele Fitzpatrick, who also furnished the Museum of Science and Industry's eco-friendly Smart Home. They're stylish, beautifully crafted, relatively affordable - and, best of all, made in Chicago out of sustainable or renewable nontoxic materials. This reduces shipping costs, saves gas, supports several local manufacturers, and cuts lead time down to six weeks. Fitzpatrick's own sleek designs are informed by midcentury modernism, but she'll do just about anything custom; she also stocks wildly creative work by a host of other environmentally replica handbags conscious Chicago artisans as well as like-minded national lines usually sold only to the trade (think sustainable textiles, window treatments, and floor coverings.) There's also an ever-changing stock of refurbished vintage pieces covered in recycled fabrics. - Lisa Skolnik

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08.31.2006 - Metropolitan Home - Travel: Metro :
Chicago Interior designer Michele Fitzpatrick founded the Bucktown atelier Verde to showcase her line of stylish upholstery and case goods made out of sustainable, toxin-free materials. Today, the place has become a veritable greener pasture for environmentally conscious home furnishings. Besides her own work, there are like-minded contemporary furniture lines from Chicago's Celia Greiner and Brooklyn's Scrapile; a never-changing stash of refurbished midcentury-modern pieces; textile lines usually sold only to the trade, unusual window treatments; hand-knotted wool rugs by Missoni and Ruckstuhl; and work by a select group of local artists.


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05.31.2006 - Chicago Home - Natural Selection: Michele Fitzpatrick :
My clients love the look of my pieces, and the sustainability factor is just a bonus, " says Fitzpatrick, whose Bucktown showroom, Verde, features earth-friendly furniture, fabrics, rugs, wallcoverings, and works by local artists. The Vibe: Fitzpatrick's design doesn't even whisper "hippie." Her sleek chairs and sofas, upholstered in soft fabrics, are inspired by such modernists as Edward Wormley and Harvey Probber. Pure Pleasure: Fitzpatrick's sustainable furniture is free of toxic finishes and off-gassing foam. Everything is made locally which saves on shipping costs and gas. She avoids tropical hardwoods, including trendy Macassar ebony, because there's not much of it. "just because something is renewable doesn't mean it's abundant," she says. Renaissance Woman: Fitzpatrick would rather give pieces new life than see them end up as landfill. An impeccably clean-lined sofa she recently sold was unrecognizable from it's rolled-armed, skirted, puffy-backed former self. She had stripped it down to the bones, put non-toxic foam cushions on it, and upholstered it in wool, which is naturally antibacterial and stain resistant. "Think of a sofa as a frame that you're investing in," she says. Rooms with a Point of View: Fitzpatrick recently finished work in an old Victorian home in the city, incorporating a tall-backed chair of her own design and other furniture she had made in local shops. "My pieces are more expensive than those at a big box retailer, but I feel good knowing that I'm putting furniture that's healthy and sustainable into my clients' homes," she says.


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