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She’s hired

Local lamp designer’s creations light up ‘The Apprentice.’



If you happened to catch this week’s episode of Donald Trump’s reality show, “The Apprentice,” and you happened to let your gaze wander away from the fresh young faces hashing it out in the luxe residence, you might have noticed a dark, kind of funky-shaped lamp resting on a bedside table.

That would have been the “Gumby” or the “Contempo,” or perhaps the “Mademoiselle” — the names of the three lamps from Little Rock designer Allison West that illuminate the fifth season of the hit show.

It’s a long way from the 28-year-old West’s basement, where she started making lamps four years ago from unusual flea-market finds. A Pulaski Academy graduate, she came back to Little Rock after completing an advertising degree at the University of North Carolina in 2000. She’s been designing full-time for almost three years, and now has an extensive collection of contemporary lamps, many made from hand-sculpted pottery or hand-blown glass. The designs are sometimes whimsical, sometimes almost austere, but always innovative. You won’t find anything like a Thumprints lamp at Bed, Bath and Beyond.

My favorite has to be the “Mad Hatter,” whose base is a kind of lopsided green teapot. It’s from West’s new “Alice in Wonderland” line, which also includes “Tweedle-Dum” and “Tweedle-Dee.” I’d have liked the Donald a lot more if his people had picked one of those.

The lamps are available locally at T. Lamarr Interiors, Christopher Scott Studio, mertonsdykehome and Kaki Hockersmith. Prices range from $250 to $600.


• The ice storm a couple of weeks ago knocked out a lot of special events, including the bridal fair at the Baker House Bed and Breakfast, which has been rescheduled for 1-5 p.m. this Sunday, March 5. The Baker House is located at 109 W. Fifth St. in downtown North Little Rock.

• Today, March 2, is the monthly open-late shopping event in Hillcrest, the Heights and Riverdale. It’s the perfect opportunity to mix retail therapy and happy hour.

• Ten Thousand Villages, the fair-trade store in the River Market district, is overflowing with new spring merchandise — lots of bright blues and greens. There’s an extensive selection of planters, starting at $12 — regular pots, hanging pots, window boxes and strawberry pots, plus cute ceramic frogs in a variety of sizes. If you’re more the laze-in-the-sun type, there’s also a fun blue-and-green-striped cloth hammock, made by Mayans in Central America, for $115. Another good find: “Simply in Season” ($20), a collection of recipes that make the most of locally grown, in-season produce. It’ll come in handy once the Farmer’s Market opens next month.

• If you weren’t the winner of that KitchenAid mixer at the Sauceco last month, you can try your luck again in March at Norwalk-The Furniture Idea. One national winner will get $5,000 worth of furniture and accessories from a new line by TV design diva Candice Olson, and the local store at Chenal and Markham will give away prizes as well — $2,500 and $500 in store credit and design services, plus 20 “consolation prizes” of $100 gift certificates.

• As promised, details on this weekend’s Zainy Zebra children’s consignment sale in Cabot: The sale, of children’s clothing sized newborn to 16, is 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Friday, March 10, and 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday, March 11, at 1002 S. Pine St. in Cabot. Pregnant women get in early — go to the web site, www.zainyzebra.com, and get a “stork pass” to shop on Thursday, March 9, before the sale is open to the public. If you’ve got items to sell, registration ends Tuesday, March 7.

• There’s another children’s consignment sale the same weekend, this one at University Mall. Mother Hen, as this one’s called, runs from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. March 9-11. Check www.motherhenevent.com for more information.

Clap on, clap off.



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