*notcot - 01.09.08 , 18:34 -

Mottainai Furoshiki

Furoshiki.jpgMottainai Furoshiki” has been created by Yuriko Koike, Japan’s Minister of the Environment, as a symbol of Japanese culture to reduce waste. Furoshiki is a Japanese traditional wrapping cloth which is used repeatedly in a stylish way. “The utilization of this “Mottainai Furoshiki” will contribute to reducing household waste from plastic bags. The Minister presented the “Mottainai Furoshiki” at the Senior Officials Meeting on the 3R Initiative held in Tokyo, Japan on March 6-8, 2006.”

In the words of Minister Koike herself: “I’ve created what you might call a “mottainai furoshiki”. The Japanese word mottainai means it’s a shame for something to go to waste without having made use of its potential in full. The furoshiki is made of a fiber manufactured from recycled PET bottles, and has a birds-and-flowers motif drawn by Itoh Jakuchu, a painter of the mid-Edo era. The Japanese wrapping cloth known as the furoshiki is said to have been first used in the Muromachi Period(1392-1573), when people spread it out in place of a bath mat or wrapped one’s clothes with it. The furoshiki is so handy that you can wrap almost anything in it regardless of size or shape with a little ingenuity by simply folding it in a right way. It’s much better than Plastic bags you receive at supermarkets or wrapping paper, since it’s highly resistant, reusable and multipurpose. In fact, it’s one of the symbols of traditional Japanese culture, and puts an accent on taking care of things and avoiding wastes.”

Perhaps what i need isn’t a reusable bag… well i’m not sure how well i could do this for a BAG of groceries anyhow, but certain for gift wrap it opens up my options! Time to stock up on everything from Hermes scarves to fabric store scraps? See the chart of how to fold the designs after the jump. (Thanks, Craig!)

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*notcot - 12.17.07 , 15:44 -

Party Popper Chandelier

popperchan.jpgIn getting ready for another new year (Yay! 2008! I have no idea why i’m so excited for this one.) ~ just rediscovered this party popper chandelier by Stuart Haygarth, who collected up 1000 exploded party poppers on 01.01.00 after the MIllenium celebrations in London. Each popper is individually hung, and apparently create quite the organic swarm when hit (be it by a breeze or a bat). If he seems familiar, perhaps you’ve also seen some of his other found object chandeliers… like the one out of sun glasses? (images below!)

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*notcot - 12.13.07 , 17:08 -

Rotor Kitchen

cabinet.jpgJust got a fun email from the folks at Rotor over in Brussels ~ and they’ve done some kitchen cabinetry with industrial leftovers ~ talk about a nice way to do the recycled thing! As they explain: “The paneling of the cupboards for this kitchen is made out laser-cut plywood, an industrial leftover from a company specialized in die-cutting cardboard for the packaging of luxury-goods. The wooden boards were used as punching-plates for punching out the shape of unfolded boxes from larger sheets of cardboard. We had to extract the razor-sharp knives from the slits before being able to saw the boards. This is a project of Lionel Devlieger in collaboration with Eric Van den Broucke.”

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*notcot - 12.09.07 , 17:50 -


sagaform.jpgI know i said i couldn’t find anything i was desperately craving to put on wishlists this year… apparently as soon as i posted that i stumbled upon the Sagaform catalogs and have been pretty smitten with the whole Sagaform “lifestyle”… and their classically clean swedish lines and colors and approach to designing objects… so my huge collage of a wishlist is below… from watering pots, beautiful knife/cutting boards, carafes with wood to hold them closed, black mini-gym/yoga sets, a clear hotpack with a metal disc within, 30$ hiking set (was on the gift guide), genius “easy shopper” grocery bag that perfectly fits across a cart, a picnic trunk with built in TABLE, and more…

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*notcot - , 01:35 -

Gift Guide Day 13

day13com.jpgGift Guide Day 13 of the countdown is Shade Elaine’s second installment from Gorgeously Goth Day 16… this one is mysteriously charming and fascinating.

*notcot - 12.05.07 , 23:48 -

Gift Guide Day 16

day16com.jpgGift Guide Day 16 was hand made by Shade Elaine… it is our guide of many G’s - the Gorgeously Goth Gift Guide… for our dark sides, our darker friends, or just when you need that extra little something to show people its not ALL happy and shiny around here!

p.s. sorry i didn’t get to other posts today ~ its been a week of sheer insanity, and i have been working on a proposal the last two days to no end that i have to show over breakfast at 7AM!!! (i’m sure you may have noticed i’m not morning person…) Also a NOTCOT Radar gallery channel launching today i think… but anyhow, this gift guide should keep you going for the moment!

*notcot - 12.02.07 , 00:15 -

Gift Guide Day 20

day20com.jpgGift Guide Day 20! This is part two of yesterday’s animal inspired guide… and thus plant inspired! This back to back pair are definitely ones i’ve been tempted to start buying the most things off of so far… well maybe these and the tech one too… well the things i don’t already have anyhow!

*notcot - 11.13.07 , 02:37 -

Maria White Mebane

argb.jpgHave you ever blogged by flickering candle light? Regardless of your answer, you should do it. And someone really needs to tell apple that having that pulsating light on laptops is just creepy and hard to sleep near - it does not breathe life like some real fire… particularly the fire within this Maria White Mebane’s Porcelain Tealight Luminaries… this was just one in many things found in the A+R gift bag tonight, and as soon as i was taking pictures, i lit this with the CITIZEN:Citizen limited edition Tobias Wong matches (remember them from icff?), turned off the lights, and it definitely caught my attention. Granted, i saw these in the store, with the lights on, and as fun as they looked, you HAVE to see it in the dark and lit. Absolutely mesmerizing. Apparently this tealight was “was commissioned by a famous LA steakhouse for table illumination” according to A+R. For a well lit picture to what else was in there see below…

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*notcot - 11.08.07 , 11:36 -

Hoya Crystal

hoyacrystal.jpgOne of these days i really need to get out to 100% Tokyo, and catch up on all the great stuff happening in japan as well… Totally jealous of all the awesome stuff they are seeing over at designboom! Brad over there reports about Hoya Crystal: “Hoya glass corporation became japan’s first speciality manufacturer of optical glass when it was established in 1941. since then, hoya has diversified and developed into many other areas from electro-optics, photonics, vision care and healthcare to luxury crystal products. as part of 100% design tokyo hoya crystal hosted a stand showcasing some of their products and expertise in crystal and glass manufacture.” I LOVE the look of the black cages with brilliant crystal animals within (this may be in part because back in undergrad i got the weirdest looks from neighbors as i bought bird cages and spray painted them matte black and then built computers into them) ~ and the skull rings, cufflinks, candle holders are awesome. Also see below for some really sweet vases, a rose ring i’m coveting as much as the skull one, and some pretty sweet mushrooms… please don’t mind the laziness with which i collaged it together, my hand is acting up, but i was far too excited to post this. Also, check out some pics of the booth from the Hoya Blog.

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*notcot - 11.05.07 , 22:01 -

Bleu Nature

bleunature1.jpg Bleu Nature’s product line feels like what a five star lodge/igloo/boutique hotel in the woods in the flintstones would be furnished with… Something so natural with their use of found driftwood mixed with lush furs, and leathers… or as they say “Streamlined, sharp silhouettes, strikingly, contrasting materials, this winter, bases are ultra-flat, curves are more pronounced and furniture oscillates between trendy inspirations and Arctic breezes. Bleu Nature explores the nuances of polar white and revisits the concept of the modern igloo. Outside-blizzards and snow, inside, the warmth of driftwood, the softness of fur and the dazzling brilliance of enameled metal…” Beyond these globe like stools are some luscious day beds, couches, bookshelves and stools… remember that bed Odysseus made for Penelope? Carved out of the living tree that was rooted into the ground? Somehow these pieces feel like the perfect furnishings to have alongside it.

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*notcot - 10.30.07 , 00:29 -

Big Dipper

chandel1.jpg“Big Dipper is a machine that mechanically creates twenty-four candle wax chandeliers by dipping. The principle is inspired on the technique of candle making, where straight strings of wick are dipped a number of times to become candles. Suspended from the ceiling, the machine itself looks like a chandelier with two ring tiers that are counter balanced to move up and down using a pulley system. On each of the two big rings, twelve smaller rings are suspended. They are the frameworks for strings of wick, hanging down in loops. Whenever one of the big rings moves down, the wick hanging from one of the smaller rings is dipped in a drum of melted wax standing below. A layer of wax attaches to the wick and slowly grows a chandelier with eight arms and eight candles. After moving up and down, the machine revolves 30 degrees and repeats the process. In twelve full cycles, twenty-four chandeliers are finished and ready to be unclipped. New ones will now be stringed up again. Each individual chandelier burns four hours before it’s gone. The remains can be thrown back into the drums where they melt down to become the material for a new cycle of chandeliers.” this is the Big Dipper by Sarah Van Gameren, and its such a fun idea, i especially like the life cycle of the wax looping around from vat to chandelier to its deconstructed shape back to the vat… and around we go again.

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*Sub-Studio - 10.21.07 , 18:09 -

Polka Tattoos

annaimage001.jpgNOTCOT Note: Here’s another article from Anna Corpron of Sub-Studio!

UPDATE: The ladies at Polka got back to me about purchasing your own TattooFurniture. Each piece is a one-off and is produced on demand. Prices vary based on which piece of Polka’s furniture you want tattooed, but to give you an idea, the bench shown above costs 3000 Euro. If you have a special tattoo in mind, you can email them your design, so that they can discuss it with Gert. Contact Polka for more details.

I must confess that recently I’ve gotten into watching L.A. Ink. I most likely will never get a tattoo myself, but I certainly appreciate the artistry that goes in to designing and making a great tattoo. Design duo Marie Rahm and Monica Singer of Polka teamed up with tattoo artist Gert Kowarzik to make a series of tattooed leather furniture. For someone commitment-phobic like me (I’m speaking about tattoos here, not my newly-wedded husband), the tattooed furniture series hits the spot. I love the texture of the tattoo on the leather, and the dark smudges that are traces of the intense areas of work by Gert.

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*notcot - 10.12.07 , 15:30 -

Daedalus & Icarus

icarusanddaedelus.jpgDaedalus & Icarus, one of those classic myths that always ended in being told “and that’s why you should listen to your parents”… Can you blame the kid for flying too near the sun? Having his wings melt? Well how appropriate to have Tord Boontje, whose designs turn any space into tranquil fantasy world, reinterpret this father soon duo?

As you can guess the Icarus is the pair of wings suspended from above… and the newly released Daedalus is the brilliant inventor as the down to earth desk lamp. These beautiful pieces by Artecnica are made of polyester, and will certainly transform any room you place them in. Close up of the Daedalus below… [And for those of you who need to brush up on your ancient mythology - the Icarus page will catch you up]

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*Sub-Studio - 10.09.07 , 15:18 -


subchairs1.jpgNOTCOT Note: Here’s another article from Anna Corpron of Sub-Studio!

There’s not a lot of info on Bleijh’s website, but from what I can gather, Basten Leijh is a Dutch product designer whose primary goal is to create user-driven products (some of which appear to be in concept phases at the moment). I love the simplicity of the work - clean lines and forms, with function given primary consideration (though the products don’t look so bad, either). I covet the Fruitbowl - my beef with so many similar products is that they take up so much space on my counter top when not in use. It would be great to compress the bowl when I’m done with it.

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*ShadeElaine - 10.06.07 , 19:32 -

blu dot: disappointed


Weeks ago I ordered the Paperclip desk by Blu Dot. It has everything I want.. simple and clean design, that plywood and steel wire aesthetic, and a keyboard tray. I finally received the desk and well… I wish this post could be about me enthusiastically gushing about the desk, but sadly it’s not. And before I go any further, I just want to say that this is not something we really do on NOTCOT. As you know by now, we’re all about talking about the things we love. But it didn’t sit well with us that we had given Blu Dot’s Bonnie and Clyde sofa such a nice posting, and yet I have this pretty terrible experience with their desk… or rather, their packing methods. So I just have to share.

Full story after the jump…

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