*NOTCOT in design - 06.22.13 -

Gabriela Tomczyk at Central Saint Martins

horn2.jpgHere’s the latest from NOTCOT’s London-based editor and resident zoologist, Justine Aw as she visits the London graduate showcases!

I popped over to the Central Saint Martins 2013 Degree Shows after a day at the Horniman Museum & Gardens and was delighted and surprised to see some of my beloved Natural History specimens within the show, through the illustrations of Gabriela Tomczyk. Natural history museums and art are a natural pairing, and this hasn’t been the first museum/grad show crossover, but it was fantastic to see some of my favorite specimens illustrated so beautifully!

Gabriela’s “London’s Natural Curiosities” took the form of a multi-fold brochure-like series of illustrations and featured some of my favorite London treasures, not only my beloved Horniman Museum & Gardens, but also the Grant Museum of Zoology (see our earlier post on the museum here) and Hunterian Museum. Her sketched pages look like a much friendlier and thoughtful guide to treasures in London and really communicate time taken to enjoy the details and a real appreciation for these museums (and their specimens) and the piece was titled I love that she included specimen numbers too as I recognized specimens like familiar friends! More photos on the next page and on Gabriela Tomczyk’s website and behance.

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*NOTCOT in design - 06.20.13 -

STIX from Not Another Chair

stix0.jpg Here’s the latest from NOTCOT’s London-based editor and resident zoologist, Justine Aw as she visits the London graduate showcases!

Another of my highlights from the Central Saint Martins 2013 Degree Shows was this fun project, Stix by Not Another Chair (Colin O’Dowd). The project was based on the idea that more dads are opting to stay at home and the kit encourages parents and children to play and explore their imaginations together, turning found sticks into cars, planes, trains and animals from the farm and jungle thanks to dad-friendly diy staples like cable ties and tool kits. Love the toy rubber band gun pack too! More photos on the next page.

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*NOTCOT in travel -

Inspiration: Nashville/Memphis

roo0.jpg Just back in LA from Tennessee adventures the last week. LAX-MEM, taxi to Lakeland, RV to Nashville to Manchester, madness at Bonnaroo, RV back to Memphis, rental car to Nashville, hang out in Nashville and then BNA-LAX! Along the way there were s’more mallows, pressurized ketchup, trained hotel ducks, seas of bodies, magic mushroom fountain, a giant inflatable meatwad, delicious bbq, vintage fire trucks (in a fire truck mechanic’s shop), guitar fly swatters, jar of fireflies, and so much more… take a peek at the instagram and cell phone inspiration from the trip!

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*NOTCOT in wearable -

Imogene + Willie, Nashville

imogene0.jpg With 2 hours before we had to head to the airport in Nashville, i had to get a peek at Imogene + Willie having seen their store online for years! Unfortunately, armed only with my cell phone (no proper dslr this trip since it was supposed to be a music/vacation/non-NOTCOT trip!) i still couldn’t resist snapping pics of this stunning little store nestled away in an old gas station. From their beautiful denim line (with quite the history! see the touching video on the next page…) to their expansion to include home goods and accessories, many of which will feel familiar to you ~ from Baxter of California and Tanner Goods to Japanese charcoal, terrariums, and much more… it is definitely worth popping in when in Nashville, TN! Next time I have more time in Nashville, will definitely have to get a proper fitting… and they’ll even help cut you the perfect jean shorts! And on lovely gifts ~ they seem to have perfected the bandana! It is so soft, subtle contrast stitching, and a nice minimalist modern print… made in japan, packaged in a cloth bag stamped in Nashville. Take a peek inside the recently redone store (Matt told us that not so long ago, all the sewing machines were still in there!) on the next page!

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*NOTCOT in design - 06.18.13 -

Anabela Chan at RCA Show 2013

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Here’s the latest from NOTCOT’s London-based editor and resident zoologist, Justine Aw as she visits the London graduate showcases!

Wandering through the halls of the Battersea campus during press day at Show RCA 2013, I turned the corner to find a beautiful table filled with iridescent natural history curios. I was immediately drawn to the gorgeous glass domes housing beautifully arranged butterfly wings, stunning pieces by Anabela Chan. Chan is a student in Goldsmithing and Metalwork and the intricate sculptures made from butterfly wings are part of her Beauty & The Beast Collection, which she has photographed beautifully. The artist even blew the glass domes herself! The stunning pieces are showcased alongside her jewellery range that also incorporate beautiful, iridescent natural history objects like parrot feathers, beetles and of course, minerals! More photos on the next page.

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*NOTCOT in food+drink - 06.17.13 -

Tasteologie + Liqurious Roundup

roundup tasteologie #44672 tasteologie #44663 tasteologie #45292 tasteologie #45296 tasteologie #44693 tasteologie #45067 tasteologie #45302 tasteologie #44891 tasteologie #42694 tasteologie #44892 liqurious #9399 liqurious #9362 liqurious #9348 liqurious #9372 liqurious #9397

This week’s roundup from Tasteologie and Liqurious includes Strawberry Margarita Jello Shots, Korean Bibimbap, Individual Cheese Fondues and more. To find out more about each post, click on its individual image.

*NOTCOT in design -

Joe Pipal’s Sweatshop at Show RCA 2013

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Here’s the latest from NOTCOT’s London-based editor and resident zoologist, Justine Aw as she visits the London graduate showcases!

One of my highlights from the Kensington campus of Show RCA 2013 was this fun project from Joe Pipal called Sweatshop that brings manufacturing back into cities and allows users to engage with the making process. His Sweatshop system is an all-in-one factory, but uses a minimum of mechanization, employing a traditional process of steaming hardwoods (in the chamber beneath the table), then bending them into shape using templates and clamp on the work surface. The resulting steam bent wood benefits from all strength of the original wood, unlike plywood and other laminates which rely on glue for their strength. The process also produces minimal waste and the products which can be produced by such a method are surprising, including the sweatshop chair and adorable two bend bike for toddlers. More photos on the next page.

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*NOTCOT in nature - 06.12.13 -

LA Natural History Museum Nature Lab

nhm00.jpg On the plane about to land in memphis and battery about to die, but wanted to share this with you first! More details to come soon…

On the must see when in LA list ~ or the, if you live in LA, must see list ~ the LA Natural History Museum’s newest additions the Nature Lab and Nature Gardens literally bring it all to life! Being a born and raised angeleno with a sister who ended up getting her doctorate in animal behavior, you can only imagine how many local creatures large and small i grew up (and continually am) fascinated by all around me… from the parrots, finches, hummingbirds, etc. that constantly take over the yard, to the coyotes, deer, raccoons, alligator lizards, spiders, and so much more… Well for their 100th Birthday, the NHM has brought in quite the selection of living creatures that are all around us in a beautifully designed urban/modern interactive exhibition that is not to be missed. They create such a personal awareness about the interaction and roles that our city and communities have played in the rise and urban evolution of certain species, as well as teaching us all a bit more about all the creatures we encounter (and may not even notice) regularly here in Los Angeles. It was so inspiring to see kids and adults alike completely mesmerized, engaging with the exhibits with giddy smiles as they darted from one thing to the next. I couldn’t help but constantly wonder, “where was THIS when we were kids running around trying to find all these crazy creatures?”

So, we went to the 100th birthday bash for fun, and i wasn’t thinking about it as a post, but it was so exciting, Shawn and i ended up snapping a bunch of cell phone pics to share with Justine, and while cleaning them up, realized the inspiration (both from content and design) was too awesome not to share with you too! Take a peek inside the Nature Lab on the next page!

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*NOTCOT in nature -

NHM 100: Otis Booth Pavilion Unveiling

unveil0.jpg The Los Angeles Natural History 100th Birthday Bash was incredible ~ inspiring, innovative, playful, and filled with incredible energy! From the updates to the displays in their historic building to the launch of their impressive Nature Gardens surrounding the museum and Nature Lab showcasing some of the wildlife that surrounds us all… to the unveiling of the stunning new Otis Booth Pavilion! It resembles an apple store like monstrous two story glass cube with a whale skeleton suspended within, and between performances by GZA/the Genius and DEVO, they had a super heartfelt look back through the history and adventures of the NHM and a look at how LA has evolved over the last century, then the digital whales burst on to the projection… even breaching at the top! and then pretending to break through the glass, dropping the curtains and showing off the new pavilion. So many random pictures from that evening, but first, take a peek at the whale filled unveiling moments in pics and video on the next page!

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*NOTCOT in food+drink - 06.09.13 -

Byrd’s Cookies + Cookie Jar

byrds00.jpg On fun surprises, it’s hard not to smile when the box from Byrd’s Famous Cookies (since 1924!) shows up! With large text saying “May your cookie jar never be empty” to a big picture of their iconic cookie jar… and that Savannah, Georgia ribbon graphic… it just makes the experience of unboxing and the anticipation that builds even better. Inside the box are a precisely packed cookie jar and lid filled with a pound of their quarter sized little cookies. The Cheddar Pecan ones are addictively delicious, and i’m hearing good things about the key lime too. You can Byrd’s Never Empty Cookie Jar that will have refills sent for 3, 6, or 12 months. Take a peek at the unboxing of the goodies on the next page!

p.s. Their history from 1924 to now is a fun read too.

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*NOTCOT in playful - 06.07.13 -

110% Play Harder Compression/Ice

110play0.jpg WOW. On technological/product design advances in the work out/training space… 110% Play Harder is doing interesting things combining both compression wear and portable/modular ice therapy. Essentially creating compression leggings, shorts, socks, sleeves and more with special pockets to target just about every muscle paired with special ice packs (which are impressively thin and flexible once filled/frozen)… Beyond the design and materials used (70% Polypropylene/30% Spandex, Antimicrobial Silvertech Fabric, Superior moisture wicking, and 360° 4 way stretch) ~ the branding is fun and striking, the copy is playful, and using the thermal bag as packaging is just smart! Not to mention the details, like having a branded carbiner on the thermal bag, and giving it a nice easy ziploc like top to keep your ice packs cool inside and your stuff dry outside. Whether you’re a hardcore athlete, or simply need a better solution to icing your soreness… this is definitely something to look into. It seems that some people work out in the compression wear, others wear it later to recover, some combine it with icing post workout instead of an ice bath and manage to run errands/pick up the kids in them… and while using it during workouts (without ice!) you can use any of the many pockets to hold your phone/etc as well. So many options… and the packaging is pretty fun. Take a peek at all the details and unboxing of the Juggler Knickers on the next page.

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*NOTCOT in food+drink - 06.03.13 -

Vapur Eclipse Water Anti-Bottles

vapur0.jpg So, to be totally honest, i was shopping for a soft water bottle that could be easily hidden in the hydration pack section of my pack… whether to hold ice, other liquids, etc. I remember having one of the simple, cheap feeling, water pouches with a pull cap top that screwed on and a little carabiner from Volvo from frankfurt autoshow years ago, and while exploring i was excited to find Vapur’s sleeker, updated design - the Vapur Eclipse!

With darker colors and a matte finish, it is definitely far stealthier. And i love the updated cap that feels far more solid, has a nice o-ring to keep it from leaking, and the cap is easy to flip open and drink from. I still feel skeptical about how the plastic holds up over time, but they are part of their Explorer Series, which also includes a team of adventurers using them, from arctic explorer to rock climber, kayaker to skier and more! When it arrived tonight, i was also smitten by the graphics and simplicity of the packaging ~ especially with details like the soft touch coating ~ so i couldn’t resist sharing an unboxing/detail peek with you! Check it all out on the next page!

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*NOTCOT in design -

Parlour Lighting from Donna Bates

speciallamp0.jpg Here’s the latest from NOTCOT’s London-based editor and resident zoologist, Justine Aw as she checks out Clerkenwell Design Week 2013.

Parlour Lighting from Donna Bates. This playful series of lamps was inspired by the designer’s early years growing up on a farmyard near Ballyronan, Co. Derry. They look rather industrial and reminded me initially of lab glassware, but actually trace their origins to the milking parlor! The shape of the lamps is taken from the forms of receiving jars which are used to collect milk in the dairy. I love the rural, yet industrial inspiration! More photos on the next page.

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*NOTCOT in home+decor - 05.24.13 -

Dedon Nestrest

nest0.jpg 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!

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*NOTCOT in design -

Chameleon Window Displays

cham0.jpg Just found a bunch of these photos on my phone… couldn’t help being fascinated by the chameleon window displays at Aritzia while wandering soho… see them all on the next page!

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