“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.
Plan Toys ~ more woody toys to play with! Noticed the water and sand blocks at Swiss Miss and went exploring Plan Toys further… turns out they have quite the variety of wooden toys, from doll houses with various decor accessories, life size play houses (with microwaves and dish washers), building toys, push/pull toys, pirate sets, build your own 2D to 3D dinos, and even mini woody foosball! The one that stood out most to me at first ~ how cute are those living room, bathroom, patio sets above? Love that they even have a flat panel TV. See more of my favorites below.
It’s not exactly easy to find luggage that shows your character while still being not only subtle and gorgeously designed but also functional… particularly when it comes to slick leather travel gear. Just stumbled upon (ok, well got an invite to their Melrose grand opening party, and naturally got distracted browsing the site) Dussault’s fall collection ~ and although you may be more familiar with their hoodies, jeans, and tees and their Gene Simmon’s Moneybag collection… it was really their leather carry-ons and messenger bags that grabbed me. From afar, these bags look like rugged leather duffle rollers, which i’m sure will age nicely with everything it could possibly bump into, and upon closer inspection you will notice that they have skull and money bag patterns pressed into sections of them as well as the calligraphic Dussault D’s for zipper pulls. The classic leather wallet with moneybags imprinted also just makes me smile ~ can’t you imagine a banker on wall street pulling one of these out of his bespoke suit pocket? It’s all about the subtle details that make you look twice. Close ups below…
My blackberry pearl just had a hardware failure last night. The volume increase button is broken… and i lasted a few hours before i had to go into the store and have it dealt with (don’t even talk to me about calling in… ugh. i tried.)… so a replacement is on its way… in a few DAYS. While further phone hunting (naturally in my frustration i turn to distracting myself with new options) ~ i discovered that you get a free personal ISLAND with the Blackberry 8830 over at Sprint.
Ok ok, so after you delve into all the small print, its just a crazy over exaggerated campaign microsite (privateislandoffer.com) ~ that reminds me quite a bit of the Nokia ones (Remember Great Pockets that was on .org?). So it turns out if you want to buy the $10.5 million phone with free island, you are actually paying the $199.99 and then $10,500,000.00 for the “exotic island with amenities” according to the fake checkout… since as soon as i tried to buy it ~ it pops up “Are you sure you’re a billionaire? There is no way we would sell a commodity as precious as an island on a site that just anyone could access. If you are in fact a billionaire and you’re still interested in purchasing an island, our broker would be happy to help you find one…”
Anyhow, the intro clip is cute ~ and their spammy sounding domain is amusing… privateislandoffer.com. Screenshots below as well.
Click the pics to see more! There has been a lot of accessorizing going on at NotCouture lately ~ particularly shiny and nature inspired things… and as usual, lots of bags ~ particularly totes and slouchy luscious leather ones.
Click the images to find out more! So many inspiring and intriguing posts up at NOTCOT.org it definitely felt like a good day to have a slightly larger roundup. I’m sure with most people busy fiddling with leopard installs… and a few unfortunate ones dealing with the painful blue screen of death on a MAC… (is it the end of an era? So sad that the quality of products and design are continuously becoming less and less satisfying!)… anyhow, for those who are swamped, but want a quick digestible bite of what’s going on at org ~ here you go!
Wow. The Keyport sure is growing up quickly. Remember the Keyport renders i showed you back in April? Well time flies, and now you’re looking at actual images of real Limited Edition Keyports (granted they reserve the right to make some slight mods in the next week or so)… For those that need a refresher ~ the Keyport Slide is the “world’s first universal keyfob”… basically they are saying that you can have all your keys in one… from your house, car, office, locks, and even RFIDs. This first set is Limited Edition, and only 5000 will be made worldwide - available in silver, black, pink, and blue. It goes on sale early next week exclusively from the ‘reserve list.’ They will be sending out 1000 emails per hour to everyone in the world that has reserved the product on key-port.com since April.
So how is this all going to work? After ordering, you receive a Kit which includes a box for 6 keys. You send the 6 keys you want in the unit in the FedEx envelope provided and they do the rest. Scared? Well they have apparently worked out a “guaranteed secure delivery method with FedEx” so your keys and address are never on/in the same package. You can even opt to pick up the final order at your local FedEx depot to further ensure your security.
Ready to get up close and personal with the Vers 2x wood ipod speaker system i wrote about earlier? Well they sent a sample over, and i had the pleasure of playing with it, and as a product i’m smitten with their attention to details… things you don’t see in their product shots? The gorgeous circular designs on the speaker cover ~ the way they run their wires under the unit ~ just how beautiful it really is to have a nice woody speaker amongst all the plastic and metal tech that surrounds us… It’s currently on sale at places like Target and Amazon for $179. Anyhow take a look below for a slew of close ups.
Working Class Heroes ~ this Viennese duo, Monie & James ~ have me giddy over their gorgeously functional grey felt and brown leather combinations… from laptop wallets to passport cases, moleskine pouches to glasses cases. I mentioned these in a roundup where i had mentioned finding these on .org and ordering two laptop wallets! Well they arrived in LA while i’ve been in SF the last few weeks… and they were the first thing i headed for when i got home. First impression? Beautiful presentation, all hand tied with red/white ribbon, and the products are even nicer in person than online ~ and they were even nice enough to add one of their keyholders as well.
I purchased their Girls Only Laptop Wallet as well as the Laptop Wallet Tidy ~ and actually i ordered two simply because i couldn’t decide if i wanted it to horizontal or vertical, and at such a reasonable 49$ pricetag ~ no reason not to get both for use in various bags. The three things about these that impress me most are… 1. no zippers! (i’m extremely particular about avoiding zippers in my laptop cases, because i had some macbooks get very sliced up on the sides from quick ins and outs… and also no velcro! so its silent) 2. the simplicity of the styles using a nice heavy “3mm grey german felt” combined with adorable graphic branding imprinted leather accents ~ as well nice cotton herringbone reinforcements 3. the genius of having laptop sleeves where you can easily PUSH the laptop out. Honestly, i’ve gone through MANY laptops, laptop sleeves, and laptop bags ~ and its been a long time since i’ve gotten excited about one… but these have surpassed my expectations in both form and function.
MANY pictures below, both from their site of their line, as well as some quick snapshots of mine when i just got home. Having these to play with may actually get me off my laptop a bit more since i need to close it to slip it into the laptop wallets!
NOTCOT Note: Here’s another article from Anna Corpron of Sub-Studio!
How amazing would it be to have the ability to customize your cook top to fit all of your cooking needs? Gaggenau has introduced a new product series that lets you do just that: the Vario Series allows you to incorporate an electric bbq grill, a deep fryer, an in-counter steamer, a gas cooktop, and a teppan yaki, to name just a few of the options. Not only does it allow you a range of options, but the Vario Series is easy on the eye, with sleek, minimal lines and clean, functional design. Some day in the future, when Sean and I design our first home, we will definitely customize our cook top to include the bbq grill and deep fryer. And maybe Sean could convince me to install the steamer for some vegetables and dumplings.
I wrote about Hendrick’s Gin back in April of 06… back before i even tasted it, but came across their ad in BusinessWeek and fell for the playful design of their site and bottle… i love their old style that has a very Monty Python feel to it at times. And without even tasting, i showed you their Unusual Times which was quite funny and well put together. Well since then, i’ve hunted it down ~ first in Oxford at a random bar my sister took me to, and then finally found it in LA as well… and as a non-gin lover, Hendrick’s is my gin of choice… because its the least gin-tasting… its got a wonderfully delicious infusion of cucumbers and Bulgarian rose… my favorite is having it in a gin & tonic with slices of cucumber, but will definitely have to explore more of the mixes soon…
Anyhow, new news from them ~ they are launching a new campaign, and its fun to see how they’ve grown since then… and staying true to their branding, the new ads and point of sale pieces were so fun i had to share! They describe themselves as “A brand that embraces the unusual with odd and inventive advertisements that feature collages of absurd images with playful intelligence.” And i couldn’t agree more. Well, go see the pics and vids below ~ more fun tidbits of info about them mixed in as well.
Wow. Apparently David Barsalou has spent the last 25 years of his life going through every illustration in over 30,000 comic books…. in order to find the original sources of Roy Lichtenstein’s pieces! Here are some of my favorites ~ more can be seen on David Barsalou’s Deconstructing Roy Lichtenstein page as well as his flickr. Noticed this over at Life Lounge.
Hehehehe. Ok this 2am, this made me giggle. So maybe “we” (yes, you too perhaps!) have a bit of an internet addiction going on. Luckily i’m not yet as bad off as Dilbert here… but those occasional iphone/pearl hits are critical even when happily exploring the real world.
The fires in southern california are… I can’t even find the words to describe how i’m feeling right now, but i’ve been trying to keep myself busy and find things to post, edit, read, anything really… and i can’t stop refreshing the google maps, news feeds, twitter feeds, etc. I’m currently in SF, and was supposed to drive back down to LA yesterday, but at my mother’s wishes i’m staying put for now… and it’s almost worse just sitting here watching it all. With so many friends and family in coastal LA and SD areas who have been evacuated, packed, waiting i wish there was more we could do. But for now, since its been hard keeping track of where to go to keep up with the info, here are a few links, and if any readers have more resources, feel free to post them as well.
LA Times google map of the fires
SD Google Maps of the fires
LA Fire Department Email Alerts (you get them in real time when they go out to media)
LAFD’s Twitter version of the alerts
LA County Fire Dept
LA Times breaking news
Sign On San Diego has a live blog
For news resources LAist points to:
CBS2/KCAL9 has multiple live video feeds available here, ABC7 is live here. KNX 1070 is doing a commendable job, with several reporters on duty for over 24 hours straight now. KNX has been broadcasting commercial-free since the fires broke early Sunday. Listen in here. KFWB’s stream is here.
NASA Images of the Malibu situation (these are seen above - the middle two).
From all the NOTCOT kids (we’re all socal natives!) ~ our thoughts go out to everyone dealing with the fires, or with loved ones there. *fingers crossed* that those santa ana winds let up soon.
It’s never too early for Christmas is it? I thought the old rule was that all the holiday goodies came out after Thanksgiving… but we’re not even quite at Halloween. None the less ~ the Breeding Ground has designed some holiday cards that make things a bit more playful for the recipient. A beautiful X’mas is what you make of it. Opening the packet you get a stack of pop out and build yourself creatures, santa, etc… and you can arrange them as you wish. And if you write a message or draw on them, you further transform them into whatever you wish. Images of the whole process below!