Absolut is the gold standard of design in my books ~ everything they do is gorgeously over the top, and their flashiness never pains me as much as the majority. This year they Blinged the hell out of everything imaginable and while being incredibly amusing and laughable, technically its well executed. From the animation and voiceover of the “History of Bling” (a MUST see, i just downloaded it for my iPod)… to the Bling Your Name wallpapers with cash and cityscape backgrounds… to the gilded holiday giftpack. Wow. Bling it on Absolut style. (Lots of images below, because this is one of those campaigns i know i will want to look back on someday when the site is long gone.)
I didn’t know i could crave a cube hardboiled egg… until now. Andrew Huff has a great flickr set of the egg cuber in action ~ apparently this is some retro device that i’ve missed out on? You take your hardboiled egg while warm, stick it in here, screw the cap down, and *poof* square egg? Lots of various pictures and video below…
On water…. Water packaging is hot these days. Why? I’m not quite sure ~ we’ve always had fancy water. But now fancy water packaging is taking the form of what looks like flasks (Fred and SEI) and even Martini Shakers? So in the theme of oO’s water list on ThisNext, and Sean even ripped off his list and added more normal and less designy waters to his ThisNext list… So i had to highlight Wawali, “12 waters, 9 countries, one source”, which has the best of the gorgeous water i’ve been seeing around… and a fun .org like interface (well polaroid-y look) via CoolHunter.
Simplicity sometimes take a lot more work than filling an image with extraneous information… especially in the case of instruction manuals - which is why i’ve always been impressed with Ikea’s ability to transcend the need for manuals in various languages. Information Aesthetics found these great wordless recipes for chocolate cake and pancakes.
Recycling containers seems to be all the rage these days ~ we had the Nomadic Museum and the Freitag store… well, our brilliant Lucy Feagin’s just sent in this piece on the CONTAINER BAR! A place i wish i could be right now.
Seriously, what hasn’t been made out of a shipping container these days? This is pretty much old news in Melbourne, but it’s such a ‘why didn’t I think of that?’ idea that I couldn’t help giving it a mention here.
Section 8 Container Bar is an outdoor bar set up in an old car park in Melbourne’s Central Business District. It seems that all the cool places these days are hidden down gritty, slightly stinky laneways in the CBD, and Section 8 is no exception. On Tattersalls Lane, off the main drag of Chinatown, the Container Bar itself is a modified shipping container, and the seating area is configured from neatly stacked wooden palettes (architectural/design/graphics/everything consultants Diretribe helped with the layout). In keeping with the local aesthetic, hanging Chinese lanterns decorate the space - and allegedly if you buy dumplings at the famous Camy Dumpling House next door, you’re allowed to eat them while you have a drink.
It’s all very ‘urban/edgy/grungy’ if you believe the PR hype (here and here) … but seriously – it’s a fantastic idea and the perfect spot for casual summer afternoon drinking or lazy weekend breakfast-ing. This place will make a fortune over summer. So next time you have what seems like a completely crazy business idea… don’t be so quick to talk yourself out of it! Who knows how these guys got a liquor license, but they followed through with what must have seemed like a mad idea at first (very interesting link here)… - and now look where they are! [fun pics below!]
Some people are natural list makers. Some of those lists are more linear - others more organic/messy - others more visual. But for any list makers out there who like image based, simple to use, product oriented interfaces - ThisNext seems to be a comfortable fit… for people like me anyhow, and some of our other NOTCOT regulars. Take oO’s new “Who needs designer water?” list - i’ve been drooling over the gorgeous bottles all morning, so decided it was worth collaging. He’s got everything from SEI to Swarovski to Stark… but he does leave out my obsession with Smart Water. If you have more contributions to the designer water bottles, go recommend it at ThisNext and tag it ‘notcot’ and ‘water’ so it will show up in the tags below. [oh and i still think the stickers are far too fun]
SEI Water - from New York. The unique gimmick? The packaging. Correct me if i’m wrong, but is it not just a flask shape? Modeled after those in liquor stores?
Feeling kind of sweet this Saturday afternoon, and while we are working on developing .org further, stumbled upon this great find that i have been meaning to post for some time here. Keith + Lottie’s Sweetheart Teacups. Packaged in a gorgeous giftbox, can you think of a better engagement present? There’s something so nice about how the tea in the cup forms such a subtle heart shape, although as you drink it the heart gets smaller, interpret that as you will… .org #895
Our fun intern Caroline and I played with the Beerclip (think money clip + bottler opener) - and overall we think - great concept, mediocre execution, but it WOULD be handy when you need one and don’t have a bottle opener around.
Here are her thoughts - “When you first see the BeerClip, all you can think of is: why didn’t anybody think of this sooner? This is an example of the rare novelty gift that will actually get some use out of it. The design is simple and clean – a little wedge has been removed from a smooth stainless steel money clip, and it can be personalized for free with three initials, eleven different graphics or beer brands. Though the BeerClip is recommended for use as a promotional tool or a gift for groomsmen, fraternity brothers, etc. we say, you don’t need an excuse to give this to the people in your life. Plus, you can make a lot of dirty words using just three letters.”
My take on it? The leverage is lacking, its kind of ok with a wad of malleable cash, but put a few credit cards in there and its just hard to use. And you’re not about to take everything out of the clip when you use it are you? And the angle you need to get at it properly is a little tough. BUT it DOES work. And i think its nice to have as backup - leave it in the car or something. Nice and flat and discreet.
This isn’t your average drinking tour of LA… as a native its come to my attention that i might quite possibly take the abundance of designer water available for granted. It is simply a way of life. Our new NOTCOT Intern, Caroline Freedman ran around town today to give you a rundown of what’s on our shelves, and keeping us hydrated during this bizarrely humid heatwave. Water is water in a designer bottle that makes you want to buy it, drink it, treasure it, and then buy another. Do you have a favorite? Show us some we missed?
And readers - she wants to make you happy. So give me some feedback here ~ this NYU girl is ready to run around LA and find you the designer goods to make you drool over - but we need some direction - what are YOU interested in? What do you think of her roundup below?
While the imagery both on and of these bottles takes your breathe away, click the pic and listen to the music of the brilliant Tycho on their site. (The site is also more good eye candy for your overheated Monday ~ heatwave here in cali is unbearable). Spirit of the Brand is taking the ability of Vodka to creatively inspire to new levels by giving artists the chance to have their artwork decorating these gorgeous bottles, as well as the box and a tshirt. The four premiere bottle artists for the Spirit of the Brand program are OGI (Ogigraphics.com), YOSOH (yosoh.com), Jason Thielke (jasonthielke.com) and Matthew Curry (ninjacruise.net). [also might remember ISO50/Tycho from here]
It is not often you find a mug that will age with you and evolve itself into a handle that only your grip can make… nor have i seem many objects that evoke a clean japanese porcelain style while bringing out your inner Flinstone….. yabadabadoo? “This beer mug is instantly comical with the blunt placement of its stone handle. It references a time when man fashioned together natural materials to create useful tools. This object is substantial to hold and incredibly efficient as a mug. Note: Shape of stone may vary.” via MightyGoods.
Hey ID kids, any one else notice the familiarity of this OGO bottle? This oxygen water has been hitting all the big sites, and then the comments about how your body has lungs for oxygen, why try making your stomach deal with it pop up. But as designers… its all about the BOTTLE. It was designed back in 2003 by imfamous Parisian Ora Ito Studio. Somehow realizing that i can sleep better now… i knew something about OGO was bothering me. (and no not just the flashy sound mandatory OGO website)
I honestly don’t recall where exactly I found this, been reading SO many sites for freelancing, i admit my mind has been a bit of a jumble the last week. But i saved this over at .org to come back to - so here it is! Isn’t it a beautiful concept? The idea of taking the experience of drinking tea beyond the beauty of the tea pots and cups, the sense of taste and smell - but making to make the tea literally bloom in your cup is like a little dose of performance art.
And the IngenuiTEA is “the most convenient teapot you will find anywhere” - they guarentee it. “When tea is ready, simply place it atop your cup. This will cause a valve at the bottom to release: crystal-clear tea flows down, while the mesh filter retains all the leaves with one of the best infusers on the market.” Not to mention easy to clean, dishwasher AND microwave safe.
In the hectic state my life has reached this week, there’s some calming and soothing about such beautifully designed “experiences”… Adagio Teas.