*notcot - 11.01.06 , 19:03 -

Wee Ninja + ThisNext

I know i’ve told you about the Wee Ninja before, as well as ThisNext (the tags down at the bottom of the page, my consulting for them, Digital Life, etc) ~ but here’s one of those exciting design/shopping related stories i had to share!

I’ll put it out there, i’ve had my doubts about how social shopping and recommendation sites would really impact designers and smaller stores that we love to feature here at NOTCOT. So check out the latest NYTimes article on “Word of Mouth” Shopping… particularly ThisNext’s impact on Shawnimal’s Wee Ninja.

“It’s been a big start to the holidays for Shawn Smith, his wife and creative partner, Jennifer Brody, and their Wee Ninja doll. Ever since the third week of August, when the new social shopping site ThisNext.com spotlighted the Wee Ninja — “Can’t resist his tractor beam of cute,” wrote one contributor — the couple have been unable to make enough of the cuddly black dolls with the cream-colored faces.

The retail Web sites that the couple rely on to help sell the Wee Ninja — ThinkGeek.com and MyPlasticHeart.com — are already out of stock. “From October through December last year, we sold a total of 200,” said Mr. Smith, who designs and assembles the $19.99 dolls in the couple’s five-year-old Shawnimals studio in the Bucktown neighborhood of Chicago. “From October through December this year we’ll sell at least 600, and probably 800. That’s huge for us.”

Mr. Smith credits the online trend spotters at ThisNext.com, and more recently at Stylehive.com, for giving the doll a holiday boost. “Until August, we were just getting our normal orders of a few dozen at a time,” Mr. Smith said. “Then came the mention on ThisNext.com. All of a sudden, stores are ordering hundreds at a time.””

So let’s just say that this story just makes me light up (esp since i’ve been in love with the wee ninja since July 2005… and will it surprise you that i was the first of 18 recommendations of the little guy?)… and i have renewed faith in Social Shopping. So go recommend your favorites and use your power of word of mouth, because Holiday shopping is around the corner, and it looks like this is the best way to support your favorite designers/stores in addition to buying from them!

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*notcot - 10.30.06 , 23:09 -

Headaching from SF

I know i promised that i would be back on top of things Monday evening - but i just drove back to LA from SF - have been desperately trying to compose a decent post, but this migraine will NOT let up! But i did manage to post a few quick must click/reads over to .org, so i hope that will keep you going till tomorrow. Some reviews i want to post this week that i’m really excited about… also maybe i ought to think about finding some writing help here, running out of enough hours in the day! Any thoughts?

*notcot - 10.27.06 , 01:59 -

NOTCOT.org #022

WOW. I almost missed that Thursday happened altogether. It’s been that kind of a week. With the new launch last week of .org’s new system, we’ve had a great response, a LOT of submissions, and the most notcotty (can that be a word?) ones are all up for your viewing pleasure. All creative eye candy all the time! Welcome to all the new registered users, its so nice to get to see the bios and webpages of users and get a feel for who you readers are, and what you might like. Keep up the great contributions, i honestly look forward to all of them when i wake up.

(l-r, 1818, 1856, 1881, 1893, 1895)

*notcot - 10.22.06 , 12:53 -

Versailles Decadence

My great escape from the everyday yesterday was Marie Antoinette. Mediocre reviews all around from LATimes and WSJ ~ but there are some movies you don’t see for plot, you already know whats going to happen. This was audio and visual eye candy all around. The music is as deliciously playful as the outfits, the overly decorated pastries, the incredible gardens at sunrise, the shoes, giant stacked hair with birds all around ~ not a detail out of place - except what was up with the pair of blue converse in a scene where she’s changing clothes/trying on shoes? Or was i seeing things? I loved it. I’d watch it again just to escape into a different world. [oh, and that type face on the bright pink on the black - it just works so well. and my mom’s biggest complaint? Dunst looks a bit old to be playing 12-early 20s - and i need the soundtrack : 2 discs of classical, 80’s, punk glam goodness, perfect for working to - for 14$ - oh - and there’s not as much as much sex and debauchery as they imply its PG-13]

Picture below - i thought it was interesting how Sony Pictures chose to push the PSP on the movie’s site by having clips play in a PSP facade.

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*notcot - 10.20.06 , 01:15 -

NOTCOT.ORG #021 - Upgraded

With so many new users, we’ve been really excited with the response people have had to NOTCOT.org in the last 21 weeks - So we’ve been working extremely hard (Jermacide in particular) to get this new system up and running. Here are some of the new features ~ and if you haven’t registered yet - come try it here!

NOTCOT.org is doing some growing up. We have finally let go of the secret code, and have created a more robust system where literally anyone can submit… all you need to do is register. Once registered, submissions will go directly to our submissions page, and upon approval by an editor, they will appear on the front page…. OH! and there’s a preview when you post now, so you have a chance to edit after you post, and if you are as lazy as i am and don’t want to click save, don’t worry, it will automatically post it if you do nothing.

*Why, yes, you can go straight to the front page.
Based on the number of posts you’ve made, and how many of those posts make it to the front page, [insert mumbo jumbo about complex algorithm/thought process here] you may notice your posts appearing automatically on the front page. Likewise… if your posts start to drop off the main page or do not appear there immediately, no worries, great content sometimes has to be filtered out to maintain the bizarre style of notcot.org, but feel free to post away

Up in the top right corner! It currently searches the captions - more incentive to write better captions? We look forward to developing this aspect further, but baby steps people…

* View all posts by a user
In case some of you have yet to try this - you can click on a user’s name in a post and see all of their posts.

*notcot - 10.12.06 , 23:27 -

NOTCOT.org #020

I hope you’ll forgive me for breaking my own random tradition of the .org roundups on Thursdays, this whole time zone hopping tradeshow buzzing thing has me a bit thrown off - so in only semi breaking the norm - check out my favorite row from this week - and go get lost in NOTCOT.org and find your own favorites! Because there really was so much amazing design inspiration, i don’t think anything i pick can really do it justice.

*notcot - 10.09.06 , 22:23 -

Digital Life

digitallife.pngDigital Life is in NY Oct 12-15… So just a quickie heads up, if i’m spotty on posting later this week, it might be because i’m lost in NY, or swamped at Digital Life… ThisNext is going to be in the Innovator section ~ so feel free to come find me, check out the booth, and try and win some goodies. Otherwise, hoping to get some shopping/wandering in over the weekend, so, NY suggestions anyone?

P.S. update from JoshSpear.com “In the past, tickets have been $15, but this year they’re offering free tickets if you redeem the source code “INSIDER” on the ticket page (where you can also print your own tickets).”

*notcot - 10.05.06 , 01:20 -

NOTCOT.org #019

I think i’m aging faster lately because these .org roundups are how i measure time, and it feels like they are every other day practically. You too? Or maybe thats just me?

My mom has been one of the biggest sources of inspiration, as well as one of the most influential design sources to both my sister and I, so you can’t imagine how happy i am that she reads and loves the site, and even offered to pick this week’s .org roundup! So here we have some of her picks of clean minimalistic/utilitarian design choices… from compartmentalized recycling/trash bins, functional tiles, pasta plates, dominoes, and print-a-toast.

(l-r, 1558, 1588, 1586, 1600, 1583)

*notcot - 09.28.06 , 23:33 -

NOTCOT.org #018

Thursday again already! This week seemed to be ring week at .org, and we saw some very interesting and bizarre posts. Also welcomed quite a few new contributors who have been sharing some incredible design finds from around the globe with us. So go poke around .org, there is never a lack of creative inspiration.

(l-r, 1462, 1484, 1496, 1497, 1418)

*notcot - 09.21.06 , 21:15 -

NOTCOT.org #017

Another week passing by already ~ where DOES the time go? Colin picks this weeks cluster of .org and says, “This weeks .org round up brings you a variety of critters from the cute to the dangerous.”

(l-r, 1404, 1381, 1414, 1403, 1407)

*notcot - 09.14.06 , 23:05 -

NOTCOT.org #016


This week’s roundup selected by Shade Elaine… Been a busy week! She says, “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.” Us, Notcot kids, have been working so much lately so here are some things I’d rather be playing with instead.

(l-r, 1334, 1325, 1309,1311, 1292)

*notcot - 09.11.06 , 23:01 -

Pot Heads

These green pot heads just made my night - and don’t they remind you of those Buzzy Mini Pots i wrote about earlier? VinylPulse really is one of my biggest sites for unexpected design inspiration… These are DJ Shiro’s Botanical Angel Can Pot Head ~ a gorgeous custom job, plants and all! And to segue using those mini pots - part of why i’m slow in the posts the last day or so is ThisNext is really growing - (today they were featured in NY Times + TechCrunch) - and i’m transitioning to help them further with design/conceptual development especially focused on bringing you a better way to discover and share worthy products. (You know how adamant i am against traditional ad banners, and how painful some site design can be - so feel free to let me know what you really think about their ideas ~ i’m hunting for ways to take it to the next level). OH, and on the buzzy pots - those insane sunflowers i planted in them under my studio display, they sprouted and grew so fast i had to repot them in like 5 days!!! So i’ve been looking for something to do with those pots…. perhaps time to make NOTCOT pot heads?

*notcot - 09.07.06 , 21:40 -

NOTCOT.org #015


“It’s an industrial kind of week” says Colin… or as industrial as it can really get on .org anyhow.

Sorry there has been TOO MUCH real life excitement today, that i got slow here. All will be exposed in good time. But for now - enjoy .org when things are slow on .com ~ it’ll keep you refreshed and inspired. GUARANTEED.

(l-r, 1258, 1240, 1237, 1264, 1262)

*notcot - 09.01.06 , 13:17 -

Announcing Unison

Welcome to September, where does the time go… to kick in this new month, and the unfortunate beginning of the end of summer, new tags for Gallery NOTCOT! This time we are proud to present the new collection by Unison, a new up and comer that recently launched at ICFF in spring… but don’t be fooled, gorgeous pieces like these don’t come easily - from Chicago, this husband and wife team has quite a reputation in the design world, and you’ve probably seen their work before and just not realized it! Robert Segal + Alicia Rosauer have Rhode Island School of Design degrees in photography and textiles, lived in Finland working for Marimekko for 4 years, and have designed for Crate and Barrel and Chiasso (owned by Segal’s father and brother respectively). And to top it all off, they are high school sweethearts ~ and share my passion for vibrant minimalist design. I love how their line is brightening up NOTCOT today, so take a look and keep an eye out for Unison ~ it has already been popping up on Daily Candy and d*s covered them as well!

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*notcot - 08.31.06 , 13:37 -

NOTCOT.org #014

Wow, another week has passed already, and we’re nearing the end of summer?!?!?! How did this happen? And can you believe we have over 1200 images and links of design goodness on .org? I get lost there regularly just browsing through old pages and all the amazing things you guys find.

Colin does this week’s round-up, saying “This week I’m feeling eclectic so for your visual pleasure some abandoned ufo houses, greenery for the indoors, ridiculous hand drawn typography, a carpet tanker for your electrical needs, and some unexpected art amid chaos.”

(l-r, 1187, 1183, 1173, 1170, 1163) <— FYI there are permalinks now - just click the number of a post at .org

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