New Tree Chocolates are gourmet Belgian goodness, which come in nice not too small sizes, with clean simple packaging… three to a nice little box (granted it does feel a little like hotel soap) - and in some unique flavors… My favorite so far is Vigor, had a box of these in the car, and the dark chocolate with coffee is the perfect pick me up right before a meeting… and freshly launched are Sexy and Blush - Sexy being dark chocolate with ginger which is supposed to be energizing… and Blush (can’t wait to try some) is supposedly rejuvenating “Dark chocolate kissed by sumptuous cherries, a taste so sinful it will make you BLUSH. ” Mmmmmmmm.
On nostalgia - i am ok admitting that while i love high end food experiences… i am also down with late night internet driven diets which include CupNoodles. You know the one - not cup of noodles, but Nissin’s CupNoodle. And while they are no freedom fries… apparently their latest large scale japanese ad campaign is all about FREEDOM!
According to 30gms - “Commissioning Japanese anime artist Katsuhiro Otomo and titled the Freedom Project, the movie is a short animation with clever Cupnoodle product placement. ” But really since i don’t understand japanese, i’ve just amused myself watching the clip, and seeing the extent to which the ad placement has reached… from filling what appear to be underground tunnels, to the sides of escalators… all for freedom. *ahem* i mean CupNoodles. So view the Freedom Project. (screenshots below of my fav scenes)
I just stayed at the office until 12:30 am, but you know how it is when you get an idea, and get that rush from conceptualizing and mocking up and you just can’t stop? So that’s how i’ve spent the first half hour of being the ripe old age of 24 so far! And this Leaf Travel Kit just popped up in my inbox, and i wish i had one right about now! It’s not easy to find quality tea anywhere, so this travel kit keeps you ready for a nice relaxing cup any time ~ complete with 6 mini refillable tins and little paper filters and wrapped in a grey bag made of natural wool feft, linen and cotton. Bag custom designed exclusively for Leaf by Parisian designer ‘Les Petites Emplettes’. With a limited edition of 500, this might be the perfect gift for your overstressed, tea loving, all natural loving designers on your list.
G Pure Energy ~ the latest in the Energy Drink shelf… brought to you by Norwegian Ole Sandberg, who’s claim to fame has been the deliciously beautiful Voss Water he brought to market with his friend Christopher Harlem. Just as with Voss, these boys know that the key to selling high end water (and energy drinks) are all in the packaging (and marketing, etc) ~ but *swoon* do they know how to design a sexy bottle… as a friend said “it looks like a hot girl”… so i guess that makes Voss the broad shouldered more masculine counterpart?
Although - from a design perspective - what do you think of the logo? That power symbol, just widen the gap ever so slightly to imply a G… is it overdoing the power/energy/G correlation? Absolutely gorgeous in the images, would love to see a real one in person, and taste it too… they’ve got some fun mixed drink ideas on the site as well.
What Is It? Apparently it’s “a unique blend of the tart flavor of Lime and the unique citrus flavor of Lulo (a Central and South American fruit with a subtle orange flavor), with only natural, healthy ingredients. The smooth, clear taste is delicious by itself or mixed with your favorite spirit. G Pure energy: Impeccable taste, nutrition and mixability.” Interesting… thanks to Melissa who tagged it ‘notcot’ on ThisNext.
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.