Stranger & Stranger, you’ve outdone yourselves once again. Following their Holiday Spirits of the past few years, “to celebrate the year we broke out of our alcohol comfort zone and designed premium olive oils, fine foods, luxury luggage, and just plain crazy new stuff, we teamed up with the amazing Dan & Dave to create this, our Ultimate Deck.” And broke out of their alcohol they did! Previously, anyone who asked me for suggestions on alcohol packaging, i undoubtedly told them, Stranger & Stranger! Well it sounds like it has been quite the year for the incredible design group… and these cards (no surprise) are STUNNING, down to the tiniest of details! From the matte black magnetic box… to the velvety pouches… to the festive ambigram… to the seal on the deck… to the gilded edges of the deck… to the artwork adorning each card… it’s a magnificent deck of cards! And the quality is incredible, as are all Dan & Dave cards (like the awesome Fulton’s Clip Joint Playing Cards we wrote about previously)… take a peek at all the incredible details of Stranger & Stranger’s Ultimate Deck on the next page!
Entries tagged with: gifts
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Wow. Just saw these wooden Chupa Chups Cases on Tre Cool, which quickly lead down a rabbit hole of unbelievable wooden candy cases… car key cases… tons of phone cases… PSP cases… and this making of that is quite something. I mean, really, i had no idea that there was a market for beautifully crafted, wood and leather Chupa Chups cases that you can wear on your belt look or hang from your purse… but now i’m fascinated. See the details and some of the others on the next page!
For a love of all things matte black - these Alexander Wang Objects Collection made me laugh… matte black Inflatable Shark! And Beach Ball… and Pool Ring! Also amusing - the Dog Collar & Leash, perfect for Bucky our black lab on special occasions? See more on the nest page!
On fun birthday presents, i got a HHA TWI01… HHA stands for Hardcore Hardware Australia and TWI stands for TACTICAL WRITING INSTRUMENT! Yup, this is more than an awesome matte black pen that takes Parker and Fisher Space Pen cartridges… it can be used to break glass in cases of emergency, etc. The entire shaft of the pen is constructed from 6000 series, non-reflective; black anodized aluminum, and a dome shaped crown constructed from high-grade stainless steel. There are also O-rings keeping the pen completely waterproof! See more pictures of it on the next page…
p.s. Between this and my Triple Aught Design Titanium Rescue Ring i should have no excuse getting stuck behind glass…
There seems to be a trend in iconic packaging being creatively repurposed for treats in the canine space… Thanks to Bucky, the NOTpuppy, we’ve been getting caught up fast in the space, and have come across some strange products… Firstly, picture perfume/lipgloss rollers… and deodorant roller balls? Well imagine that - only it’s a low cal liquid treat that your dog (or cat) can lick, and only 1 calorie in every 10 licks! That is PetSafe’s Lickety Stik! Now imagine those large gluesticks or sunblock sticks… some even have a string attached to go around your neck? Only instead of smearing it on… you let your dog lick it? That is Leanlix! The big form anyhow… the mini Littlelix - look just like Lip Smackers in their multi-flavored packs… the same packaging as the usual lip balms. These say 3 licks are 0 calories! And then there’s also the HumanGear GoToob (my favorite travel toiletry container) which doubles as a Paww Treat Toob…
Strange as they are, we were far too curious… so take a peek for more packaging details on the next page, as well as Bucky’s responses!
Here’s the latest from our resident zoologist and London based editor, Justine Aw.
On a freezing, wintry day, we left the chilly Portland Square to find ourselves in a warm, decadent room filled with inviting floral displays and delectable macarons! The perfect taste of Parisian spring in a London winter! When we heard Pierre Hermé were launching their 2013 ‘Les Jardins’ collection, we knew we were in for a treat, but had no idea of the delicious and unusual flavor combinations that awaited! More previews of the new collection on the next page!
Wow. BALL & CLAW FEET ON A PURSE! Ok, sorry, been a bit excited in a “how did i not know about this before?” way…
We’ve been hearing about the amazing world of Parabellum from Bernard at Acquire for some time now… and i must say their details and free range Bison leather feel incredible. And they are all hand crafted right here in Los Angeles! Well, catching up on things, they just took my breath away with their Handbags. Sure they are made of free range Bison, with hand turned edges, suede lining, removable handles and all the works… but what REALLY sets them apart are the Military Spec Ceramic Ball & Claw Feet in copper or black. Yes, like table legs, lamp posts, etc of days past… also, who hasn’t been terribly annoyed by the lack of protection most purses have to fight off and survive what real life throws at them… these hardcore feet sound like they can handle any floor you are forced to put it down on…
p.s. If possible, i’d totally put feet on my other bags as well…
Just spotted this Built NY Origami Wine Tote over at Crate and Barrel. “Its unique folds aren’t just visually-appealing—they actually help safeguard your bottle from bumps in the road. This wine carrier also compresses flat and secures with handle for compact storage. Each Origami Wine Tote comes with a to/from tag so it needs no wrapping to make a great presentation.” It reminds me of the Veuve Clicquot Clicq’Up Origami Ice Bucket that collapses so nicely… This tote comes in Wine Tote and Champagne Tote - the perfect reusable gift bag! See more pics on the next page…
This year we’re doing gift guides as we feel inspired to round up products we either have or would be extremely tempted to buy or gift. Black Friday/Cyber Monday shopping online this year ended up being all about the NOTpuppy, Bucky, and i’ve been learning a ton as we shop through the world and internet to catch up on what awesome dog goodies are out there. While the roundup of rugged toys/brands have been growing here, this Dog Gift Guide is all about fun products we’re loving and wanting for Bucky! And while he is only a 10 week old Lab pup, he’s already getting pretty strong - so for this gift guide, we’re really shopping for the rugged, fun, BIG dog toys that will last… not so much cutesiness, clothes, or things that accessorize your dog like they are an accessory. Ready to dive in to the goodness? Head to the next page!
From kickstarter to my mail box! My Seed Money by Leafcutter Designs just showed up today, and they are even cuter than expected. Lovely attention to detail with the packaging and coin faces. Basically, they had custom pressed paper filled with seeds, then letterpressed and cut out as coins! So you can tip with them, share them with friends, pop them in pots and poof! Plants!
As they describe it, “Seed Money looks like the real thing - pennies, nickels, dimes, and quarters - but is far more valuable. Use it to solicit surprise and smiles from friends and strangers alike, and then tuck these paper coins in soil to grow colorful flowers and delicious vegetables. It’s tender for tending! Seed Money is hand-illustrated and letterpress printed in Nebraska on thick custom papers embedded with seeds. Available in rolls for sharing and spreading the wealth, these lightweight, whimsical - and practical - coins will slide easily into a purse or pocket.”
As for what grows from them - Pennies: Mix of wildflowers including Black-Eyed Susan, Spurred Snapdragon, Shirley Poppy, White Tarrow, and Sweet Alyssum. Nickels: Herbs including oregano, dill, parsley, basil, chive, thyme, and sage Dimes: Root crops including carrot, parsnip, and turnip. Quarters: Salad greens including bibb, Black Simpson, Salad Bowl Red, radicchio, and endive. And the special Buffalo Nickels: Bee Balm (aka Lemon Mint).
See all the fun details (including some “special” pennies) on the next page!
The last thing i expected for Black Friday, was to be curled up on the couch sipping a “Southern Fried Cocktail” while Bucky, the NOTpuppy, lay at my feet chew/squeaking a chicken leg dog toy. But here we are - and it’s amusingly delicious and bizarre!
Backtracking a bit - if you remember April Fool’s earlier this year, Torani (i thought jokingly) said that if enough people wanted a Chicken ‘n Waffles flavored syrup, they would “make it real”… and they DID! A bottle of it just arrived today along with waffle mix, a dog toy chicken leg (clearly sending fried chicken would be too crazy), and recipes! I must say the smell is unique - the flavor is powerful - and it tastes better than expected mixed with bourbon and root beer… though i would suggest going a little lighter than suggested on the Torani Chicken ‘N Waffles Syrup. Take a peek at the fun bundle on the next page - as well as Bucky enjoying the chicken leg!
P.S. if you’re looking for other crazy flavors to spice things up, they also have Bacon, Pumpkin Pie, Caramel Apple, Butter Rum, Choc Chip Cookie Dough, Cupcake, Gingerbread, Red Velvet Cake, Kiwi, Toasted Marshmallow, and so much more.
Oooooh - file this one on the “why haven’t we had more of these?” list! W+K Studio’s Goodness has a brilliant 2013 letterpressed calendar of COASTERS! With designs by Ben Guernsey, Chris Lael Larson, Curtis Pachunka, Dani Guralnick, Erik Blad, Jason Murray, Kristen Minarik, Mike Weihs, Nicole Blauw, Paul Levy, Peter Yue, Sarah Hollowood and Brad Simon. Printed by Chelsea Guidry… this limited run of 100 calendars contains 12 coasters each filled with art on one side and month info on the other, making it useful far beyond it’s month. I hope they make this one a new tradition - i never seem to have enough gorgeous letterpressed coasters around the house (and they age so nicely!) See more pictures on the next page of the art and details!
Remember when we showed you our first pack of AJ’s Original Toy Boarders? Think little green army men - only skaters? Well he’s back with Toy Boarders Series 2!!! And this time there’s even a girl cruising along… and a filmer with video camera… as well as a Bomber, Front Lipslide, Backside Boardslide, Switch, 50/50m and Tailgrab. For 5$ a pack of 24… these are perfect for stocking stuffers or even decorating cupcakes!Take a peek at everything in the new series on the next page up close!
p.s. This is also a sneak preview of one of the goodies you can win during the annual NOTCOT Holiday Giveaways starting black friday! Stellar line up this year!!!
Duncan Shotton has taken my breathe away - again. Remember the adorable little Revive: Denzel i shot on the bentley last year? Well a magical package just arrived from Tokyo! Duncan (while at the Fab Cafe - the tokyo cafe with a laser cutter we had on NOTCOT.org #46688) designed and laser cut the most incredible magnetic camera shaped gift box (a one of a kind) for NOTCOT containing his Cloud Key Holder… and even the details in the corrugated cardboard box exterior and the structure keeping the camera well protected are all laser cut. Stunning attention to detail housing a fun magnetic key holder! You have to see all the details on the next page!
Oakley does lots of customs - from sunglasses and googles, cases, watches, and even backpacks! One of the latest customizations are their classic frogskin sunglasses - I love how subtly you can customize them with a tiny etching on the lens (like where you normally see polarized or a brand name). Oakley offered me a pair to try out their customizer so here’s a peek at the NOTCOT Oakley Custom Frogskins - I went with a polished clear frame, black iridium polarized lens, and NOTCOT etched in the lens… so easy and pretty fast, take a peek at the details on the next page!
Phew* what a few days it has been! On Tuesday, we added a new addition to our NOTCOT family - Bucky (short for Buckminster, naturally) the 8 week old black labrador retriever puppy! (My first puppy!) This awesome little guy is a ball of non stop energy, and we’ve been lucky that he’s magically house broken, sleeping through the night, and great with other people, dogs, machines and more… but it also means he learns crazy fast, can get sneaky, and can’t get enough play time sprinting throughout the house and yard when not sleeping or eating! It has also become clear that this little guy is going to get HUGE! And since Shawn has a big, older, 120 pound lab back home in TN - i’ve been getting caught up on what toys will and will not stand up to the hardcore, persistent chewing of a lab in full force…
So we’re starting Bucky off right - and trying to find the most fun, chew-proof toys that will last (besides the usuals we already have at home that he’s loving - tennis balls, hockey sticks, etc) - and aren’t too hard on the eyes (it’s been mind numbing seeing how much terrible stuff there is out there - both in aesthetics and quality!)… On the next page you can see some of the things we’ve bought, as well as some i’m curious about…
P.S. Do you have a dog? What are his/her favorite toys that have been exciting and lasted well?
On fun discoveries over at Designercon today - there are some fun cards from The Birds & The Beasts. I love this Telekinesis Congrats card - and the adorable die cut I’m Sorry card on the next page. Apparently - “The Birds and the Beasts is a collaborative effort between illustrator/designer/toy collector Christopher Lee and writer /impulse baker/blog junkie Kristine Songco. When we’re not busy making cartoons (Kristine), drawing monsters (Chris), playing with our dog (both), or cleaning up Kristine’s messes (Chris [duh]), we make cards for all you lovely people!” Take a peek at my favorites on the next page!
Incase just launched their new EO Travel Collection of carry-ons and it’s gorgeously functional! They aren’t kidding when they say it was designed for the “evolving traveler who relies on personal technology for business, pleasure and inspiration. Each EO Travel bag combines smart organization and dependable protection to make the travel experience easier, safer and more efficient.” I’m forever on my quest to perfect my carry-on packing and optimaize getting through security with each technology upgrade in my usual arsenal… the thoughtfulness of the details in the bags is enticing. I’ve been dying for an international sized polycarb roller that allows an easy unzip section to go through the scanner without needing to take the laptop out! (Also love that the hard shell roller expands!) And the duffel has an easy access, outside padded pocket ready for your 15” mbp.
Not having seen them in person yet, my two picks are definitely the hard shell roller and duffel. The flat polycarb of the hard shell seems to scream out for customization (so if you end up in the situation where everyone has one too…) you can easily sticker bomb it… or perhaps laser engrave on it? So many possibilities. Also love that the duffel is simple enough on the outside, you don’t scream “There’s a laptop in here” while traveling… Take a peek at the details and videos on the next page!
Just in over at DWR is the Vitra Toolbox by Arik Levy! Too cute - wandering over to Vitra, i found even cuter pictures (and more colors) of the super simple, functional, injection molded plastic tool box/desk organizer… I think we need some of these in NOTlabs to get all the hacked apart electronics and knives and tools and more organized (and easy to move from desk to desk!) - see more pics on the next page!
They’re here!!! For those following on twitter/instagram, you’ve been seeing peeks of NOTlabs turning into a laser cutting puzzle factory… cutting 50 limited edition Chris Yates Studios’ Bafflers in the first CLEAR editions! The first 25 will be kept in “Total Clarity” and the second 25 will be hand painted on both sides for the “First Frost” versions… with his signature hand sprayed paint splatter (only in a translucent and opaque mix this time!) on both sides, each “First Frost” will be truly unique.
If you’re unfamiliar with Chris Yates’ puzzles, the name “Bafflers” makes complete sense as soon as you dump the pieces out and start to try to reassemble. Each and every insane (sometimes multilayer) puzzle is hand cut out of wood on a scroll saw, hand painted, and “made to last generations”… they are truly maddening works of art. (See his traditional creation process here.) Turning these into clear acrylic has in no way made his Bafflers any easier… having accidentally dumped out the clear puzzle while first working on the prototype, it certainly took a bit of time (but not TOO much) to get it back together… and perhaps the most mind twisting part of cutting the batch of 50 has been transferring the cut pieces from the laser bed to the stacks of finished puzzles, and every time they come apart slightly, if a piece flips over, etc., it takes a few to piece them all back together! We’ve cut and inspected each and every puzzle, and are so excited to help Chris bring these “Aperture” limited edition clear Bafflers into the world! Take a peek at more details and a peek at the making of on the next page!
We’ve been tracking shipping container architecture for years now, and it has become more prevalent than ever… you can even get doll house versions now! These Model Container Homes at Module R are such detailed examples of designer modern living down to the art, tvs, plants, furniture and more! See more details on the next page!
On surprise packages that arrived while i was out of town… this amazing box came from Mark Hoppus ~ the play on his last name has created/enhanced his affinity for octopi, naturally having one as his personal logo. There’s not much to say here ~ the goodies pretty much speak for themselves… letterpressed. octopus. in a top hat! thats the coaster… and also some basic octopus logo stickers and a baseball cap. Check out the details on the next page! (Thanks, Mark!)
Going through pictures from London Design Week, concrete was definitely a stand out trend. There were the hungarian Ivanka Flaster Concrete Tiles, street art, Gray Concrete Duckies… and here are 22 Design Studio concrete goods ~ from rings and earrings to pens and clocks and even watches! Take a peek on the next page!
Adorable! Papafoxtrot Space Fleet! With gorgeous packaging too! Designed for Papafoxtrot by Postlerferguson - “We have selected the 5 most iconic unmanned spacecraft circling the earth and transformed them into Papafoxtrot`s iconic design language which we developed with our series of wooden cargo vessels a year ago. From an interplanetary garbage collection to a future commercial spacebus to Mars these amazing machines are making the world go round day and night. The satellites are made out of maple as well as laser etched stainless steel parts with polished natural wood, matte white and glossy red finish.” Take a peek at Spektr-R, GEOTAIL, Cygnus, Dragon, and ORS-1 on the next page…
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On fun and unexpected surprises, a Reebok FitList Box just arrived in the mail! For the launch of the Reebok FitList App on Spotify, the folks at DeepLocal created limited edition sneaker cases containing portable stereo speakers and sound reactive LED lights that glow in reaction to music, ambient sound, and even touch. (It’s oddly mesmerizing to tap the case and watch it light up and fade!) Most impressive is the fun video they created with athletes working out alongside a wall of these LED shoe boxes, and as they jump and run and work out. They’ve created 100 limited edition Reebok FitList boxes holding a pair of RealFlex Transition 2.0 shoes featuring an exclusive colorway (black with red soles!) just for the occasion. See the video, making of, and a peek inside the actual Reebok FitList Box and what powers it on the next page!