Thursday, October 18, 2012

Fire in the hole!

Sometimes I find something that is just visually stunning. There's a smart write-up (and more pix) about this Norwegian fire pit on OHIO's blog. For my part, I'm just going to post the pretty picture. Enjoy!


Monday, October 15, 2012

All signs point to...

I'm a sucker for industrial signage. This is a bit over the top, but it's just my speed. And thanks to the kindness of internet strangers, the full project is documented on Instructables.

Instructables contributor Seamster rescued a hand-me-down dresser with a trashed finish and quality construction by adding street signs to the fronts. As a bonus, there's some great, donut-related advice on how to legally acquire a pile a street signs for your own furniture plans.

Images from Instructables. Via Apartment Therapy.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Down the tubes

Your elderly aunt Zelda may have trouble getting up and down off the pouf version, but everyone else will think these are a fun addition to your decor. The best part, it's all recycled. The wrap is upholstery fabric, but are you wondering what's the bouncy fun inside?

I'll give you a hint.

Yup, it's your basic lake-side inner tube. Great work from Camilla Hounsell Halvorsen.

Images from Camilla's website. Via Apartment Therapy.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Look Good and Do Good(will)

Creative Review has a great post on the new visual identity for Goodwill SF. I like the idea of treating Goodwill as a brand vs. a dumping ground for out-of-date shoes and gently loved toys. This take is fresh enough to work for any modern retail brand, and yet completely in line with their mission.

The sides of the truck emphasize the thrill of the score, finding the perfect whatever in the shop. The back of the truck highlights the donation side. Nice work.

For you locals, the high holy holiday of Halloween is coming, and there is no better place to come up with creative costumes than that downtown SF Goodwill. Shop early, before the best wigs and spandex are gone...

Images from Creative Review. Via NOTCOT.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Japanese capsule hotel, for the birds?

We've covered Nendo projects before, and the Japanese designers always have something smart to say. This time, it's cohabitation, Japanese capsule style. 

You plus up to 78 tiny bird families. I wonder how many of the nests are occupied? 

The design is provocative, and charming without being too cute. The idea is better communing with nature, and the peepholes are a clever way to get your voyeur birdwatching on.

Images from Nendo. Via NOTCOT.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

What's black, white, and read all over?

Apartment Therapy just did a post on the latest material trends from Paris' Maison et Objet show. The whole post is good, but check out these newspaper tables. The tabletops are compacted newspaper. They look so sophisticated for such a modest material.
The tables are by Dutch studio VIJ5. I'm not crazy about the legs, but those tiles are great. would love to see one in person. Do you think it's soft? Smudgy? Does it smell like the crossword puzzle?

Images from VIJ5. Via Apartment Therapy.

Thursday, September 13, 2012


Our beloved Tricia has been hard at work, and finally launched her own Etsy shop, Rewind Lab. I'll feature her jewelry some other time, but today I wanted to show off the golf club racks.

Tricia is a purest in her green adventures, and with the exception of a bit of glue and the lacquer, all of this is reclaimed, from the vintage clubs to the wood salvaged from abandoned futon frames. My golfing experience involves more spinning windmills than manicured greens, but I think they're lovely. You can get your own here.

Images from Rewind Lab.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

A textbook case

Thomas Allen takes retro encyclopedia and vintage grade school primers and turns them into loveliness, perfect for this back-to-school time of year. 

My favorites here, but there are many more gorgeous images on the website. Prints for sale.

Images from Thomas Allen. Via NOTCOT.

Thursday, August 30, 2012


I am completely blown away by this deck of playing cards printed on reclaimed NYC Metro cards. From the spades inspired by manhole covers to the Coney Island joker, every MetroDeck card is a mini work of art featuring iconic New York details.

I love the obsessive nature of collecting cards for over 2 year, and I am inspired by the dedication it must have taken to make even one set, much less complete 40 or so decks worth of cards. Even the packaging details are spot on.

A full set will run you $550, but if you have a favorite card, you can get smaller sets at the shop. Personally, I'm digging those sewer spades. My latest lab crush....sigh. There are lots more photos and details at NOTCOT and the MetroDeck site.

Images from Metro Deck. Via NOTCOT.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

99 bottles of beer in the wall?

As a glass artist, I have a weakness for architectural glass, and I was blown away by this Heineken bottle. The WOBO bottle is a vintage concept, originally designed in 1965 after Mr. Heineken took a trip to the Caribbean and was struck by the bottles scattered on the beach and the lack of good building materials. The big idea is that the bottle would have a secondary use as a brickl. Best I can find, they manufactured only 100,000 or so bottles, and there are only a couple of structures built with them that are still standing.

Enjoy the photos, and if you want to learn more, there's a great article on the WOBO at Inhabitat.

Images from Inhabitat.

Monday, August 20, 2012

This was...

T and I have had a lot of conversations about how to convey the material source for something you're creating, especially if those materials are reused. Most of the example out there are earnest, but not clean and modern. The other day I ran across Provenance. They make cutting boards and other housewares from recycled teak and glass. But the best part is their branding and packaging that gets the idea across in a lovely, modern, Helvetica-esque way. No fair-trade, made-by-hippies image here. This is the new green, beyond green, where consumers want to know the materials in their products the same way they want to know the ingredients in their food.

On the fronts of the packaging, This Is Now...

And on the back, This Was...

It's so well done. I wish we'd thought of it. For more details and photos, read the full article on the dieline.

Images from the dieline.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Something smells fishy

It summertime. Feel like getting your mermaid on? I'm always excited to find someone using materials in an interesting way. Hazel Studstill of HJ Designs uses carp skins to make jewelry that looks and feels a lot like leather, but still has a bit of fish to it. 

The carp skins are salvaged from fisheries in Canada. And if you like these, check our her other pieces. She makes lots of lovely jewelry, and it doesn't all involve fish.

Images from HJ Designs. Discovered via Fab.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Must-see TV

Some of you may know that I have a minor obsession with what happened to all the old tube televisionss when everyone upgraded to flat screens. I remember seeing giant TVs just sitting on the roadside with little free signs on them, just because no one knew exactly what to do with them.

I never found a good upcycling answer for the ubiquitous 2003-era giganto-TV, but Nashville artist and Etsy seller Macho Octopus is getting close. He's making super cool lamps from retro 80s versions. It would have been simple to just gut them and add light bulbs, but the addition of sandblasted details on the glass and a pop of color makes all the difference. The zig-zag is my favorite, and that sugar skull test pattern is amazing.

Images from Etsy shop Macho Optopus.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

For your littlest architects

When I was a kid, I went through a phase of wanting to be an architect. I remember spending hours drawing floor plans of my father's imaginary lake house. I never really sketched the house itself, just the floor plans. I found it satisfying to figure out where everything would go, and how all the rooms would fit together.

My own kids draw mostly zombies and explosions (with the occasional rainbow thrown in for good measure), but no matter what the subject, this drawing board desk Ninetonine would be a cute place to draw. The pencil cup chimney is very clever, and the dual use as desk/playhouse is charming.
Images from Ninetonine. Via Remodelista.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Tick tock block party

Cincinnati design team Such + Such creates these topography-inspired clocks with their pet CNC machine. I love a good good mash-up of traditional material and modern manufacturing techniques (or the flip side, old school manufacturing and modern materials). They come in a couple of sizes and finishes, for those of you still use a clock to tell time.

Images from Such + Such. Via Fab.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Pocket plants

if tiny terrarium jewelry isn't bold enough for you, Parisian designer Egle Cekanaviciute may be more your speed. The SEED clothing lets you plant seeds in unusual places, like your back pocket, or your shirt sleeve. At the core of the concept is designer's statement,
"...any human creation is helpless against the power of nature."
These aren't really practical as clothing (or garden planters), but the photos are lovely and as an thought piece, the line is intriguing. Enjoy!

Images from Egle Cekanaviciute. Via Stylelist.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

This is a hole nother thing

Sometimes the best sculpture is made from the imperfect. Brazilian designer João Paulo Scigliano rescues discarded timber from logging companies. I couldn't get better photos, but I love these cubes with the holes inside. It's a modern take on all the redwood burl coffee table. 

Images reposted from Recyclart.

Friday, June 29, 2012

On the Road Again

We've covered recycled bike tube jewelry before, but Montreal-based Otra (On The Road Again) does it right. These are sleek and modern. Available via Fab for the next couple of days, or on Otra's website

I can't believe how sleek these look, given their humble origins and bicycle innertubes. 

Images from Otra. Via Fab.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Stick a fork in me...

There's a lot of jewelry made from reclaimed vintage silverware. Most of it is nice, and often looks like this (rings from Doctor Gus--super affordable at under $10 each!).

But every so often, someone sees the materials differently. Kristin Freiha at BohoElegance (on Etsy) decided to pull the tines off the forks and rework them into some surprisingly modern pieces. I like how relaxed they are, especially since they originated with grandma's formal silverware.

Images from Doctor Gus (center) and BohoElegance (top, bottom).