Every now and then, you need to be your own client. And there’s nothing quite as mind clearing as manual labor… or as satisfying as making something you love and get to see and experience daily! So Shawn and i recently decided to set aside some time and energy and be our own clients working on a redwood gate and bench/top for our triangle that matches the fence we made! Somehow starting this all… also turned into reorganizing and sprucing up the garage shop (with the help of Bucky the trusty shop dog, of course!)… acquiring some new tools… and enjoying the jacaranda’s purple flowering season! Even as we started working on it all - it has quickly become our favorite spot to have coffee, relax, and grow a few new experiments! Take a peek at what we’ve been sharing on the NOTlabs Instagram on the next page!
I haven’t been able to get these Lotus Belle Tents out of my head since i ran into one while exploring Mercado Sagrado. They feel part “normal” tent + part yurt + part awesome inflatable structure looking shape… that all fits in a duffle bag (or two! depending on size) - and it’s SO spacious! They come in 16ft and 13ft sizes - and “The 16ft Lotus is 56% bigger in size than the 13ft and fits everything but the kitchen sink!”
Of course the part that was intriguing me next - HOW do you assemble it? And of course they have an adorable instructional video… and the cutest hand drawn pdf instructions! It’s also surprisingly simple to assemble, even alone (though i’m sure help would speed things along nicely.) Basically you lay the waterproof floor down, pop the walls up, pop the roof up, poke the pole up to hold the center up, and velcro wall and roof together… and you’re done! Depending on your needs, they have a few variations - adding various doors, screens, and other luxuries. Take a peek at it all on the next page - i’m so tempted to pop one up in the yard, or for our next adventure!
Loopholes designed by Fermetti & Oskar Vermeylen for Atelier Belge - currently smitten with this clean, simple, modular wall panel system! Starting with a rectangular grid system, you have a range of options to mix in - wood, metal, acrylic shelves, boxes, lights and more. Take a peek at the lovely details on the next page - and the full pdf cataog here.
I’ve been researching far too many decks, patios, gazebos, hammock structures, mesh pavilions, building codes and more as of late… i guess i’m itching for a new LARGER design project to toy with, as well as an excuse to spend more time lounging in the yard. On fun inspiration, currently loving this new KETTAL Cottage by Patricia Urquiola! In some ways it feels like an old school platform tent you can rent at some camp sites, in other ways it’s like a mini house/cabana to chill poolside. What’s especially nice is how versatile your options for the side panels and roll down covers are! Also thinking that Bucky would totally try to hop in and splay out taking over the whole thing… perhaps a mini or a platform attachment for the dog would be a fun add on. Take a peek at far more pictures on the next page.
On more Instagram inspiration (yes, i’ve been finding a lot of that lately) - the @GoRumpl #BeerBlanket made me wish a tiny bit that i went to Outdoor Retailer. So, Rumpl is a “high performance blanket” company - that started making blankets and throws out of sleeping bag type materials. They remind me of the unzipped rectangular sleeping bags… but without the zipper! (You may have seen then before on NOTCOT.org.) And on unique, adorable tradeshow swag - their Beer Blankets are mini versions (stuff sack and all) for your beer!
Here’s the latest from London-based editor and resident zoologist, Justine Aw!
This afternoon was all about crafting as I visited the Knitting and Stitching Show to get a bit of inspiration. It was a glimpse into the world of not just sewing and knitting, but braiding, felting, weaving and much more. Displays included vintage sewing machines and all sorts of beautiful prints and patterns. There were alpacas made from alpaca fibre, sheep made from wool, as well as some adorable crafting kits for felting and crocheting. More photos on the next page.
I’ve been so intrigued by the Philips LED SlimStyle A Shape since we first posted it on NOTCOT.org, so when i saw them in person at Home Depot, i couldn’t resist! While they are certainly slim, they are far thicker than i imagined ~ but the plastic and lighting (both color and brightness) feel great. But my curiosity didn’t stop there, after testing it out in a few lights, i had to see what was inside! What allows for this unique design is the brilliant move of eliminating the large heat sink for this LED Bulb by spreading out the LEDs on the disk (and giving each its own tiny flat copper heat sink) ~ less weight, less space, less energy, and as far as i could tell, the lighting was comparable to the other incandescent bulbs around. All in all, i’m definitely tempted to replace more bulbs around the house with these ~ and they even work with dimmers! Take a peek on the next page for a closer look at the packaging and dissection.
Here’s the latest from London-based editor and resident zoologist, Justine Aw, who recently covered Top Drawer in London ~ and here are links to some of our features about it!
On fun packages that just arrived… We’ve seen pictures online of the Alite ultra-lightweight chairs for some time now, but it wasn’t until trying them all in person at OR that we truly understood how awesome they are… and how incredible the tiny design details are! For starters, i thought my 13” macbook air was light (not even 3lbs)… their three chairs range from 1.1 to 1.6lbs! With their butterfly logo and the sling style of their chairs, it’s hard not to have the iconic butterfly chair come to mind. With a similar single piece fabric sling and a collapsible thin metal frame, merged with the materials/tech from outdoors goods like aluminum tent poles and ripstop nylon, the result is a collection of incredibly versatile, ultra-lightweight, sling chairs that are perfect to pop up just about anywhere! They have used them on kayaks and canoes, rocky waterfalls and paddleboats, and more! I felt like Goldilocks as i tried each model out, the Monarch, Mayfly, and Mantis, my favorite is definitely the MAYFLY! While the Monarch is lightest, you’re constantly on your feet and rocking… and the Mantis gives you the stability of a traditional chair with it’s 4 feet firmly planted on the ground, but no rocking… the Mayfly gives you the best of both! You’re stable on the ground, you can tilt back and rock, AND you can even remove the front leg for a rocking-only Monarch style seat! From most of the pictures i’ve seen online, it has been easy to overlook just how tiny and lightweight these things are since they support full grown folks (up to 250lbs) with full back support. So, take a peek at my unboxing of the Alite Mayfly on my DESK (alongside my 13” macbook air and bulleit water bottle) to see all the design details on the next page! (As well as their fun video! and a peek at the other models!)
p.s. These would be amazing at music festivals!!!
On a fun combination of swings and iconic chairs… here’s the Fermob 1900 Hanging Armchair! A part of their classic french bistro/outdoor furniture collections, it’s a playful, unexpected twist. Also awesome, is the video tour inside their factory ~ it’s hard to miss how happy their workers seem, as well as how optimized their system is… check it all out on the next page!
Something are fun in pictures, but even MORE fun when you climb inside! When we walked past Dedon and i saw the Mini Nestrests hanging in the window and a huge Nestrest just inside the door, we had to pop in… and when the man there told me i was welcome to climb in… how could i say no? The Nestrest is designed by french duo, Daniel Pouzet and Fred Frety. It is far comfier than i expected, and with the way they lit it, it was a magical little oasis to curl up in! Also, far more spacious feeling than you’d expect. The minis are pretty much cat/mini-dog sized… and imagining them popping their heads out while hanging from a tree makes me smile. And their photography! The contexts in which they shoot the Nestrests are pretty funny ~ from being carried around in them, to next to a flock of ostriches and more. From the original pictures, i somehow assumed that they would be made of bent wood, but turns out it is all made of an “especially strong DEDON fiber” which is 4cm wide instead of their usual 2, weather/UV/cold+heat/pool+sea water resistant, high density polyethylene that is maintenance free and easy to clean. It is also environmentally friendly, being 100% recyclable and toxin-free with love carbon emissions. I’m tempted! It would be amazing hanging from the tree in the backyard, to curl up and swing gently… take a peek at the playful photography, view from inside, and more details on the next page!
Spotted at ICFF, these Kamina & C Stools designed by Takeshi Sawada are too cute ~ pictures really don’t do them justice. They are ADORABLE! And fuzzy and cute and perfectly little kid sized. Coming in Bambi, Sheep, and Cow variations, Bambi is by far the cutest, sheep at a close second… take a peek at the pics on the next page!