Bucky is now 2! Here’s hoping that everyone’s right that 2 is the magic number where labs chill out a bit. Then again, the 2.5 week road trip all over the US and Canada seems to have helped him learn a lot and relax a bit too. Lucky dog just came home to some surprises, including the hardcore, super stealthy Otis Dog Collar from the nice folks at Defy Bags based and made in Chicago, IL. Throughout their bags and accessories, their signature is definitely the AustriAlpin Cobra Load Bearing Quick-Release Buckle, “which can support 2,000 lbs. These are the same solid steel & brass imported buckles used by U.S. Special Forces. There is no finer buckle on earth,” says the tag. Excessive for a dog collar? Most definitely. Awesome looking and feeling? Indeed. As they say, “Life’s too short for cheap buckles.” Ready to see the details? (I’m also a fan of their branding and tape!) To the next page…
Here’s the latest from NOTCOT’s London-based editor and resident zoologist, Justine Aw.
This afternoon, London’s Merchant Taylors’ Hall was taken over by Johnnie Walker in celebration of Johnnie Walker Blue Label, Symphony in Blue. The afternoon was a delectable experience filled with a playful celebration of whisky including glacial ice, burning barrels, a fog of whisky, flavor organ and a banquet that was literally all singing and all dancing. An enormous production from Done and Dusted and Bompas & Parr.
This post is part of our special NOTCOT Alberta Great Escape series thanks to our friends at Travel Alberta. In Part I, Shawn, Bucky, and I are loaded up in the NOTFZJ80 spending a week in Alberta roadtripping, camping, and exploring all that we can fit in… follow the series here to see what inspires us along the way!
It’s been a while since i’ve popped into a store and found myself wanting things from almost every shelf! Well it happened! When in Calgary, you have to go see The Uncommons in Inglewood for awesome giftiness and designer goodies! While there were many of my friends and favorites on the shelves, what made me even more giddy was the amount i hadn’t seen! Amazing way to discover some local Alberta goodness. Sadly much of what is there isn’t on their website… yet! So it’s a store definitely worth popping into in real life. Take a peek on the next page for a look inside the store as well as the taste of Alberta they gifted us!
It feels like it’s been summer here since february or so… and when we were checking out at the supermarket, had a nostalgic moment when i spotted Smashball - that beachy wooden paddle ball game thats been around since the 70s with such an adorably iconic logo. It also seemed like a fun one to experiment with in the Laser Cutter! Remember the hexagon experiment from the laser challenge? Well we threw some of those patterns together and played with painting and etching it into the paddles and toying with some custom colored plastidip. Take a peek at more details of the experiment on the next page!
The very first exhibit that caught my eye at Show RCA 2014 was Streettoolbox from Pierre Paslier from the Innovation Design Engineering program. All about open-source “advanced activitsm”, Paslier’s projects empower activists to create interesting temporary street art displays. His toolbox includes a sticker-applying drone, a programmable car that can draw with salt, stamps for your bicycle tires and magic-pen style graffiti that is revealed by a portable projector. More on the next page and at the project wiki.
Here’s the latest from London-based editor and resident zoologist, Justine Aw!
Our highlight from Pulse this year was the “Made in Korea” stand showcasing a number of designers respresnted by NoTag that had lots of playful items including fold-your-own paper toys, a dog-shaped bookstand and more. Check it out on the next page!
Growing up and living by the beach, my cars are never without a beach towel and flip flops. You never know when the mood might strike you! So i’ve been super intrigued by these Vertty Beach Towels since they surfaced on NOTCOT.org. Vertty just sent over a bright orange one today ~ and first impressions: awesome packaging, lightweight (1.5 lbs) , and love the unusual geometric shape with popping colors! They are “Dreamed in Australia, Born in Portugal” and handmade and eco friendly. It’s a thin 90% cotton with a terry cloth like feel that is quite nice to lay on and supposedly fast drying, and the waterproof zipper pocket is a nice detail! Take a peek at the full unboxing (and takeover by Bucky) on the next page… as well as a peek at their playful bus and business cards!
In continuing this year’s trend of trying new things ~ for the last two weeks Shawn and I led a workshop with the 72U Winter Session 2014 class to create a Social Impact Project to make people smile. 72U is a special project inside global ad agency, 72andSunny, which takes place right in the middle of all the action in their Playa Vista office, which is housed in the old offices of Howard Hughes. Self-described as “an intensive one-of-a-kind learning experience designed to open people up to new ways of thinking, collaborating, and tackling modern communication problems,” 72U feels like a creative take on The Real World (yes, there’s even a 72U house), where around half a dozen chosen applicants from around the world, with a myriad of backgrounds, are fully immersed in the world of 72andSunny (assisting and learning on various accounts), inspirational guest speakers, workshops/projects, field trips, and more for 12 fast paced weeks! Even spending a mere 2 weeks with them, I’m amazed at the pace they are running at! It’s no surprise that the majority of participants who survive the program become a part of the 72andSunny family.
But back to the Social Impact Project NOTLabs just completed with 72U! The group was tasked to ‘engage people and make them smile’ - to ultimately create an object that can also be easily shipped and activated around the world. Of course the biggest challenge of all wasn’t concepting or creating, but being realistic about what is feasible in the short time frame to bring an idea to life ~ and they were armed with the new 72andSunny laser cutter! Keep in mind that beyond this project, they are simultaneously planning a HUGE mural, an art show, and assisting on various secret projects and more… So head to the next page to see what they came up with!
Valentine’s day is around the corner, and the Kraken Rum just surprised us with a V-day card, adorably mini rum, and a black rose! For their Kraken vs Cupid campaign, the lucky folks in London have a chance to pick up a bouquet of black roses paired with a bottle of Kraken (vs champagne)! How do they do it? “The black roses for sale are created by placing dark red roses in vases filled with a Kraken’s ink in place of water. This ink is then transported up the stem, via the xylem, to the leaves and petals turning them black, a scientific process that will also be showcased in the space. For dramatic effect some of the flowers will also be turned black using special floristry dyes.” and they will be paired with “… Calendula Lily Eclips and Queen of the Night Tulips, both darkest purple in colour looking visually black to the human eye.” Take a peek at details of the gorgeously dark surprise we received on the next page! And if you’re in London, visit the Think Ink Florist on Feb 14th!
Here’s the latest from London-based editor and resident zoologist, Justine Aw ~ in addition to her other Top Drawer finds, we LOVE these semi DIY cards that use Bare Conductive’s Electric Paint.