Manual Coffeemaker Launch Recap

Posted on March 24th, 2015 by Alicia

Just two weeks ago we launched the beautiful new coffeemaker from Manual at our Chicago store, attended by the creator Craighton Berman and a round of intrigued customers and coffee tasters. Craighton is the designer and producer of this amazing line Manual, and also an artist and professor here in Chicago. Manual’s goal is to  produce not only aesthetically beautiful products, but also ones that ask the user to slow down while making food.


As he puts it: “We think the effort of preparing food is just as pleasurable as the food itself. We think there’s pride in making something yourself. We just aren’t all that impressed with gratuitous features. When it comes to food—we’d rather take it slow.”.


Craighton demonstrated the process of the Manual Coffeemaker (truly easy) and how to pour the hot water correctly to achieve the coffee bloom which is an important piece in order to extract the flavors from the coffee. The coffee used was from Gaslight Coffeeroasters, also here in Chicago. We are so thrilled to be offering this gorgeous coffeemaker in our store and now online. As for Craighton:

“I’m thrilled to be partnered with Unison as one of the first retailers to carry the Manual Coffeemaker Nº1—they truly understand how to bring together an amazing collection of modern home goods that strike a balance between function and form. I’m honored to be among so many objects that I appreciate (and desire).”




Vote for your Favorite Pillow!

Posted on March 20th, 2015 by Alicia

Spring has sprung at Unison, and with that we wanted to help color your world with a little spring makeover in the form of adding some of our bold throw pillows to your modern home.

From now through Monday April 6th vote for your favorite pillow from our spring collection and we will send you a promo code via email to shop the winning collection at 50% off!

Sign up to get your voters’ discount code:

#ThirstyThursday With Rhine Hall

Posted on March 19th, 2015 by Caitlin Ragan

Unison teamed up with neighbor and local distillery, Rhine Hall to bring you a delicious #ThirstyThursday drink!

Rhine Hall’s Jack Rose (see recipe below)


Toyo Tumbler, $4-6


2 oz Rhine Hall Apple Brandy

75oz Fresh Lemon Juice

5 oz Homemade Grenadine

25 oz Simple Syrup

Top With Regans Bitters


Fill Ice In Shaker

Fill Ingredients


Fill In Glass Over Fresh Ice

Top With Regans Bitters

Lucky You, Free Shipping!

Posted on March 17th, 2015 by Caitlin Ragan


Design Love Fest

Posted on March 11th, 2015 by Caitlin Ragan

Roughly one month ago, one of our favorite go-to blogs, Design Love Fest, held a Unison giveaway. We were overwhelmed by the loving 440 comments from participants. Below you’ll find a recap of some of those blush-worthy comments and a few of the products selected by Design Love Fest.


Modern Design 102: Geometry

Posted on March 6th, 2015 by Alicia

In continuing our exploration of modern design’s key characteristics, we land squarely on the topic of geometry.

Where traditional interiors rely on heavy texture and ornamental flourishes, the modern movement looks to clean, straight lines for its aesthetic building blocks.

The Building Blocks of Modern Design Represented by Blockitecture Blocks

Let’s take a closer look:

Back to Basics

To help achieve its hallmark of breathtaking simplicity, modern design relies, in large part, on the sharp and spare lines of its architecture, furnishings, accessories, patterns, and so on. But how did this passion for clean geometry evolve?

Modern style grew from a desire to bring function into lockstep with form, which meant setting aside unnecessary decoration in favor of crisp lines.

In the early part of the 20th century, as industrialization swept the globe, the modern movement embraced the functionalism and new technology of its time. In light of the increasingly machine-driven global culture, much art and design in fact began to reflect the aesthetics and utility of machines themselves.

Modern Geometric Poofs

In light of all this, simple geometry quickly came to center stage. Economical, adaptable, and efficient to construct, geometric forms became a defining characteristic of the modern aesthetic—and left an endless field of play available to those of us who would embrace modern design long into the future.

Making Space for Strong Geometry

When applied decoration went out the window, new materials stepped in, and creative expression turned to a streamlined, almost futuristic look. Today, modern interiors rely on strong edges, simple curves, and geometric angles as much as ever.

At the same time, industrial materials like chrome, concrete, glass, stainless steel, and other polished elements dominate the modern interior scene—materials that seem to lend themselves naturally to strong geometric forms.

Screen Shot 2015-03-05 at 8.40.55 PM

In fact, at its core, modern style is a form of extreme precision. So in many cases, the movement strives to illustrate the simplest forms: squares, rectangles, or rounds—all heightened to a new meaning and elegance by virtue of careful placement and emphasis.

Which brings us to the all-important factor of space. Much inspiration for modern design has come from the clean, geometric features of the Japanese style. In Japanese design, space is not seen as an emptiness or lack of something. On the contrary, it is considered an important design element.

Hip to Be Square at Home

You can establish a sense of structured, clean geometry in any interior space. Start with the bare bones of the room.

A Clean and Crip Modern Bedroom

For flooring, walls, or other surfaces, consider clean white, oversized tiles with rectified edges, or wood floors sanded down to minimize the grain.

To highlight the natural geometric lines of a room, skip moldings or trim around windows, doors, and walls.

A Modern Room with No Molding

Think organization from the outset, but try setting bookcases and shelving into the walls, rather than letting storage elements protrude into the space.

Now for furniture. Clean and spare is the name of the game here—but don’t think that this means boring. More often than not, modern furnishings can best be described as bold, striking, and often flat-out fun. Look for clean lines at every turn, and let yourself be picky.

A Moder and Crisp Geometric Tablescape

Finally, accessorize with flair and drama. This is a great place to begin playing with asymmetry—an effect that’s achieved by combining dissimilar objects that have equal visual weight or eye attraction. Today, asymmetrical balance is one of the defining characteristics of a modern, geometrically minded space.

While more casual in feeling, asymmetry can be quite difficult to achieve. So think about starting small: on your coffee table, balance an eye-catching, radial metal bowl with a neat, straight-lined stack of boldly colored books. Whatever your attempts, it’s worth experimenting until you nail it. Asymmetry suggests movement and can lead to very lively interiors.

Screen Shot 2015-03-05 at 8.35.48 PM

When you’ve achieved new heights of gorgeous geometry, post your own tips in the comments below, or share your pics with us by mentioning @UnisonHome when you share your style on Instagram. We love to see how you’re incorporating the essentials of modern design into your own interior spaces.

Ampersand Design Studio

Posted on March 5th, 2015 by Caitlin Ragan

Morgan of Ampersand Design Studio recently shared her nursery photos, which were full of Unison favorites like our Shapes Mint Crib Sheets, Anchors Blue Throw Pillows, and Sailor + Regatta Yellow Crib Sheets.

baby-bed.115421   blue-chair.115453  baby-in-yellow.132807

Photos by Allison Corrin

Coffee @Unison

Posted on March 3rd, 2015 by Libby Cortez

We are proud to offer this beautifully designed and thoughtfully considered new manual coffeemaker by local artist, designer, and professor Craighton Berman at our Chicago store.

Please join us on Sunday for this very special event, Coffee @Unison, featuring a demonstration, tasting, and the chance to bring one home with you.

Manual Coffee Maker

Sunday, March 8th, from 12 – 2 pm

1911 W Division St

Chicago Magazine: Home & Garden

Posted on March 3rd, 2015 by Caitlin Ragan

Chicago Magazine Assistant Digital Editor Whet Moser’s Q&A with Co-founders Alicia and Robert is insightful and inspiring and the whole Unison team was especially proud of this article. Read on to hear all about “Marimekko, design, and the future of fabric”.



Favorite Baby Products Made In The USA

Posted on February 27th, 2015 by Caitlin Ragan

The darling San Francisco-based blog, Say Yes, recently included our Soft Zebra baby toy in their roundup of Favorite Baby Products Made In The USA!