Old World designs take root in the planters and wrought-iron works of John Kalkanian, of Fierro Designs in Costa Mesa.
"I want the pieces to look like they were made 100 years ago," said Kalkanian, a UC Irvine graduate. "We have some modern pieces, and we do custom contemporary work, but most of our designs are classical. To keep the high quality, we make things the old-fashioned way. We still weather our pieces naturally."
In addition to planters, there are patio chairs, tables, beds, magazine racks and garden ornaments in his collection, which has been featured on the covers of Sundance and Neiman Marcus catalogues.
From a heart-shaped basket wall planter ($18.50) to an ornate three-tiered piece ($225), Kalkanian stays true to his design standards. Among his more unusual items is a cast bronze armillary garden ornament ($225) that is also available in table size and doll furniture--rockers ($34), tables ($22), cribs ($38) and high chairs ($36).
"They also can be used as planters when the kids are done with them," said Kalkanian, who also makes child-size furniture.
All of Kalkanian's pieces are available in several finishes.
For more information or to order, call Fierro Designs at (800) 330-4766 or visit the studio at 1760 Monrovia Ave., Suite B-3, Costa Mesa.
Gargoyles--medieval monsters thought to ward off evil spirits--have become keepers of the drain.
Extending past the edge of the eave, architect Chris Wasney's gargoyle gutters help direct water flow in a decorative way.
"Even gutters deserve a little attention," said Wasney of Cody/Anderson Architects in Palo Alto. "We came up with the (gargoyle) idea for a house we did, because a downspout wasn't feasible. We wanted to add some whimsical detail to the house."
Wasney, who has worked on several projects throughout the country, said the gutter heads are ideal when you want to direct the water away from an overhang or a bank of windows.
Wasney, 35, a Los Angeles native who attended Stanford and UC Berkeley, has two or three templates ($50 each plus shipping and handling) available, but he doesn't guarantee any spirit lifting or that the gargoyles will ward off rain.
To order Wasney's templates, call Cody/Anderson Architects at (415) 328-1818.
Bed-azzled If you want to heat up the decor in the bedroom, a steel-frame bed by Sallie Trout might be just the spark you're seeking.
The bed ($4,400), part of the Trout Studios collection, has a patina finish and powder-coated aluminum accents.
Each bed is made to the customer's specifications, so it will work for nearly any odd-sized mattress or futon. The frame is 20 inches off the floor, and the headboard stands 64-inches tall.
Trout Studios, which includes furniture and home accessories such as dressers, chests, knobs, switch plates and mirrors, was launched by Trout about two years ago.
For information on the Trout Studios collection or to order a catalogue, call (310) 574-1574, or visit the showroom, 308 Venice Way, Venice Beach.