Luxury (and some non) automotive brands make some strange an unexpected lifestyle products to complement their cars. While cars were everywhere today at IAA ~ i found myself drawn to the shopping side of the show, exploring the spaces and booth designs and constantly gravitating towards the style shops that most luxury booths had… the products found within were often to be expected ~ jackets, golf balls, model cars, USB keys, keychains, mugs/espresso sets… the less unusual i’ve rounded up for you on the next page! Everything from that Mercedes bobble head of a dog above ~ to SLK Red Nail polish, Lotus Backgammon, Citroen weights, Maserati Ethernet cords, Bugatti Deodorant, Smart Ice Cubes, Bentley jewelry boxes, and more…. including this strange trend of USB keys that look like car keys!
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IAA is one of the biggest auto shows in the world ~ quite fascinating besides the car are the luxury automakers “style” stores ~ filled with goods they are selling outside to complement their cars. Increasing trend? Toddler Cars! A great way for junior to be just like mommy and daddy? Nice way to start the brand loyalty young? And some really are SO cute. So take a peek at ones i found wandering the show floor over at Porsche, BMW, Audi, and Hyundai on the next page.
p.s. While many others have variations of these push/walk cars as well, these are the ones i actually saw today on the show floor!
There are so many approaches one could take to a mashup ~ for whatever reason mine tends to be start with an evil mwuahahaha kind of mad scientist kind of laugh in my head, followed by trying to figure out what fun items around me might fit together. In this case, 2 of the new Plumen bulbs arrived - “the world’s first designer light bulbs” (So gorgeous! But simply hanging them from a regular light to show off their fun shape didn’t seem like enough!) ~ and i’d been playing with lightbulb fixture connectors/splitter/plugs (and wondering how big of a tree of them i could make with lots of bulbs at the ends!) ~ and there was the Blue Lounge Mini Dock that allows your iphone/ipad/ipod to stay off the ground when charging… and when you put them all together ~ along with a simple ikea lamp base… i ended up with this fun iPhone Charging Lamp! Where the bulbs are as much a part of the lamp as the rest! Something almost antler like about the bulbs viewed this way ~ and rather mesmerizing as it lights up a room ~ perfect little stand to charge the iPhone, light the room, and control my music from it as the phone streams to speakers over airplay… so iphone charging DJ lamp? Take a peek at more of the silliness on the next page!
The latest international fashion designer Evian limited edition just launched, and for 2011 the glass bottle is decorated with André Courrèges’ emblematic flower that was created in 1967. I love that each Limited Edition keeps the same spirit: reinventing a rare and festive moment, that is to say an optimistic vision of celebration and most of all the idea that “Youth is not a matter of age, it is a mindset”. ~ So true, isn’t it? Also, every time i see Evian, i can’t help thinking its Naive backwards.
So on youthfulness, the bottle felt like it needed a fun fresh background ~ so i climbed up the jacaranda tree out front with it for this quick shoot just before running off to the airport. Needing to hydrate pre-flight, i even drank the bottle on the ride over. And am sharing this from you from the airport lounge! Ready to see close ups of the bottles? Everything from the fun bottle cap to the message included with it, to the history of limited editions that have come before is on the next page!
The Mutewatch is here! Well the first batch coming in to the US landed at A+R, and during Fashion’s Night Out, Andy had me over to do the honors of unboxing with him! I’m sure you’ve seen the video by now of this magical swedish watch that is MUTE ~ visually and audibly. A flick of the wrist or the slightest caress and it will show you the time. Swipe with the finger to start changing modes. Pinch to delete an alarm… an alarm which is ALSO mute ~ and will vibrate to wake you… Beautiful packaging, it will definitely make for a fun and unexpected gift! Take a peek at the details on the next page ~ and the video to catch you up on how it all works too!
I’m all smiles when NOTCOT favorites team up ~ and i really can’t stop grinning when a rough few days get turned around by thoughtful little surprises ~ like this exclusive Dopp Kit from Incase and the Ace Hotel New York which matches the new Incase x Atelier Ace FW2011 collection. Complete with Ace/Incase logos cobranded on the zipper pull ~ and all the favorite Rudy’s Barbershop goodies usually in large pump containers in the Ace NY bathrooms now in adorable mini form ready for other travel adventures! It’s as if they knew i’m running around in a packing frenzy trying to pack for a few weeks in europe, and as i get to organizers, the perfect sized dopp appears. In standard Incase fashion, the quality is amazing, nice sturdy yet soft cotton ~ bright “taffeta” orange interior making it easy to fish around for things. This may just be the perfect bag for the many action HD cameras and mounts and cables and madness i need to pack for this trip! Take a peek at all the details on the next page…
p.s. THANK YOU, Incase + Ace!
Today i had a little adventure into the world of Levi’s. Wandering out into hollywood, i found myself immersed in Levi’s! Fascinating to see everything from the history of the 501 (from the original to the various evolutions of the years…) to the Curve ID jeans for women under a fantastic installation of bright yellow folding yard sticks ~ to the latest Commuter 511 collection (perfect for commuter cyclists with reflective seams when you fold the cuff up)… and even a peek at the edible garden installation by Silverlake Farms that was previously at MOCA! The adventures culminate in the dressing room, where after getting a feel for the collections, i slipped in to their Curve ID: Demis to find myself to be a perfect 27… take a peek at it all on the next page…
Shopping for a car in the mall. Pick up a pair of shoes, grab a bite in the food court, then saunter in to a store to build your car on an iPad and email it to yourself, then hop down into the parking garage for a quick test drive?
Tomorrow, LA based tech startup/car company, CODA, officially opens their first store in Century City ~ perhaps store isn’t even the right word ~ it’s an “experience center/meeting place” in which shoppers can learn about electric vehicles (EVs). Completely green ~ the facade and ceiling are made of reclaimed wood, the plywood is all formaldehyde free, even their wall graphics and pamphlets use eco friendly printing and materials. With a car parked outside, you can’t miss it’s location near the movie theater and food court, and even if you don’t peek in, the window inspires you with “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” And when you’re ready for a test drive (or while looking for a parking space) ~ you can’t miss the special CODA section in the parking garage directly below the store with CODA’s waiting for you to give them a spin.
I love this trend of stores that are focused on the lifestyle and experience of a space versus simply selling their product. The theme of creating inviting spaces to engage buyers and could be buyers in a relaxed setting ~ and bringing the products and stores to where people already congregate (versus the usual destination streets filled with car dealerships.) is very Apple store like ~ and in fact Tesla brought on the man who helped create the first few to do theirs… and the team at CODA admitted Apple inspired their as well, and even strategically placed their first store near an apple store (across the way and down a few doors!) to attract people who like such experiential spaces. Will we be seeing more of these? I wonder which other genres will be next ~ is this going to continue to be an EV trend?
But first ~ take a peek into the beautifully designed CODA space in Century City as well as their test drive area in the parking garage on the next page!
Apparently i have developed a soft spot for silk scarves with sketches/drawings on them (remember the Hermes Pegasus?) ~ the latest is the Porsche Design P’1820 Scarf. “The silk scarf shows Ferdinand Alexander Porsche’s very first sketch of the so-called “exclusive spectacles” with its revolutionary lens replacement mechanism. The sunglasses and especially the sketch from 1977 have been Porsche Design’s first dedication to the world of fashion.” They are producing 200 of these internationally, and they will be available at the various Porsche Design stores at Fashion’s Night Out this Thursday! See close ups on the next page…
Just did a superpost feature over at Tasteologie showcasing some fun pics from a quick wander through the Whole Foods Beer Section. There is always so much amusing and beautiful graphic design going on with the labels and boxes! And also a look at a cube of octopus from the cover of Gastronomica….
Leave it to GearPatrol to come hand deliver their Onia collaboration Amaury board shorts in a 2012 Nissan GT-R in a nearly matching blue (their shorts are far less sparkly than the car thankfully) ~ So what better way to unbox it ~ than to unbox them together… so we popped the hood of the car to see the beast within, opened up the zipper pouch the shorts come in… and even found that the coin pocket they specially lined for the collab is a PERFECT fit for your GT-R key! And to top it off, when you start the car up, she even announces that there is a “High surf warning around current location.” Exactly when you need board shorts! So we promptly hopped in the car and took off along the beach to Malibu for lunch… though it’s currently one of the fastest production cars to lap the Nürburgring… we sadly didn’t have a chance to really see what it could do. Keep an eye over at GearPatrol to see what they have been up to with it soon! But for now, take a look at the GP x Onia Board Shorts and my favorite details of the 2012 Nissan GT-R on the next page.
p.s. After unboxing Louboutins on the Mars Red C63, it seemed appropriate to switch to blue and unbox the GP x Onia on the GT-R. What next?
Adorable little package came ~ in that perfectly cute “brown paper packages tied up with string” way ~ from Pocket Dept! They are quite simply, as their tagline states, “A notebook for every pocket” ~ from back pocket to shirt pocket to messenger bag pocket, they have you covered. “Pocket Dept is a line of handy notebooks inspired by vintage stationery and designed to suit every pocket. Each Pocket Dept book is made from the finest writing papers and perfect bound for strength and durability. Designed and manufactured with recycled materials by Art House Co-op in Brooklyn, NY - from our workshop to your pocket.” And they are quite lovely! Take a peek at their simple functional goodness on the next page.
p.s. I love that they have blank pages.
This series of Unexpected Combos posts is sponsored by P&G Downy.
I never thought i’d pop open my freezer and grab mini frozen 911s, Caymans, Cayennes and Panameras to chill my drink. Or create little traffic jams with… and watch them melt. Or… freeze little people inside of them to have drivers and passengers? Or… make mini chocolate Porsches?
So when tasked to share Unexpected Combinations with Downy ~ these Porsche Driver’s Selection Ice Cube Trays were hard to pass up. Amongst all the luxurious goodies and automobiles both super old and futuristically new at Monterey Auto Week, the one thing i impulsively bought as soon as walking into the madness of Concours d’Elegance was this ice cube tray! And while they are more cookie cutter silhouettes with slight patterns on them (which melt off way too fast) ~ they are still pretty fun! Though i’m now tempted to make silicon molds of my old hot wheels for more accurate ice cube trays! Check out the fun i had with them on the next page!
Staying at a friend’s in Dogpatch, San Francisco ~ we wandered over to Serpentine for brunch today, and of course ended up next door at NOTCOT favorite, Triple Aught Design’s store/studio! In addition to checking out all their new wares, i love that they have made a morale patch for the area. “The origins of morale patches trace back to the fighter plane nose art of World War I. During the VIetnam War, units often created ironic, humorous morale patches.” This one is their homage to their Dogpatch location. Take a peek at both the Dogpatch patch, as well as the Ranger Eyes (mini, rubber, and glow in the dark) on the next page.
The latest edition of Assouline’s Proust Questionnaire is beautiful ~ leather bound and printed on vellum paper with silver foil edges. The filled questionnaire on the cover in gold is a nice touch, and it would look great on any bookshelf. This classic interview question list is quite the personality test ~ Perhaps the best detail is the inclusion of blank questionnaires you can have friends fill out… or turn it in to your new guestbook and really get to know more about who you have in your house… take a peek inside on the next page
Teaser from the Keystone Design Union just came through with these awesome designs featuring iconic creatures of the pacific northwest for K2 Snowboards’ 25 Year Anniversary Collection. I’m already lusting after all of the stickers and shirts ~ everything from owls and beavers ~ bears and deer ~ to bigfoot! Nice black and white, fun “Don’t Mess With The North West” slogan, and illustrations that just scream ROAR. Take a look at more graphics on the next page!
I’ve never had an ice bucket in my laptop bag traveling before… though after quite the hectic weekend running around Monterey/Pebble Beach/Carmel with all of the auto madness, it is pretty amazing to pop up to santa cruz, out to the patio, pop open the Veuve Clicquot Clicq’up, grab some ice, and pop open a bottle of Yellow Label on the balcony staring down at the beach and bay as you hear the waves crashing, seagulls squawking, and seals honking. I wrote about the Clicq’up Origami Ice Bucket by Mathias van de Walle earlier this year when it launched in Milan, here’s a peek at it in person ~ popped up on the balcony!
We ended up at an unexpected oasis amongst the madness of Monterey Auto Week when we drove up into Monterra Woods to join friends at the Aston Martin Estate. They took over a beautiful house and filled it with a brilliant mix of lifestyle brands from Far Niente Wines and Louis Roederer Champagne, to Emanuel Andren’s Chocolates from Sweden… Vizio 3D tvs and CxC Driving Simulators, to Flexjet by Bombardier and Worth magazine… There was even a tailor, diamonds, non-alcoholic cocktails (test drives happening!), and of course Aston Martins ~ from the V12 Zagato and One-77 to Virage Coupés, Vantage S Roadster, and Rapide. They created a beautiful space with relaxing indoor and outdoor areas, and endless things to do. Favorite? While waiting for test drives, the garage had two 3-large-screen simulators with racing seats that throw you around almost as hard as a real F1 car. (Of course, had we planned a bit better ~ i’m sure test driving the Astons would have been the favorite!) All in all, there was so much to see and do, and it was the perfect way to get a feel for the lifestyle they imagine around the marque. There were even herds of deer and flocks of turkeys roaming nearby! Take a peek and explore the estate and details on the next page!
Spotted at The Quail, this Lamborghini Aventador LP 700-4 is a beast of a car ~ and not just visually… one of the most fascinating things at the Quail was seeing the car stripped down to its carbon fiber chassis and all that is inside it. It’s their fastest production car Lamborghini has ever made ~ and drew quite the crowd of enthusiasts and buyers. On a sillier note, their uniforms were polo shirts with the Lamborghini signature bull looking much like the Big Polo Ponies ~ even with the orange matching the Aventador popping off their blue. Check it out on the next page…
If you recall, i’ve been a bit research obsessed with mini-HD-action cams ~ and while i have a GoPro, the Contour+ was the one i was waiting for… First impression, i’m impressed with the Contour+ ~ nice packaging, solid chunk of hardware, and the 1080p video quality with GPS and bluetooth connection to both iphone and android devices as monitors are great (though a bit finicky to get connected at times) ~ while this and a few other toys just got acquired for some more playful projects coming up this week, wanted to take a moment to share the unboxing with you to get a first look at what’s included (and you know i’m a sucker for simple matte black boxes with crisp graphics) ~ so check it out on the next page, and more soon as i start playing with it more and comparing it to my GoPro… so far it already has me wishing my GoPro was more aerodynamic and had apps to let my phones be the preview monitor… anyhow, to the unbox on the next page!
p.s. Unboxing occurred while famished at lunch at Father’s Office.
When i wake up to an email that is like “Charging Glass? USB? I kind of want it.” and the link goes to a TOOTHBRUSH. I pop up in bed to pay attention. Sonicare’s new DiamondClean USB 5 mode rechargeable sonic toothbrush… beyond on the minor tweaks here and there that improve on my brushing… let’s talk accessories. How will any normal CUP compare to this magical charging GLASS? That yes, you can also use like a glass to rinse with. But more importantly, it looks nicer on your sink than having that charger for it to dock in to! More natural. What a nice user experience shift… also while on the go (or at your desk, or in your car, or when you forget your charger and just let it share with your ipad, etc) USB charging travel case! So its the accessories, and the laughable product shots with models that have me half awake and curious about this new toothbrush… or dreaming about how to convert my charger into a glass… see more pics on the next page!
On fun packaging ~ this one deserved its own post. A peek at the new retail packaging of PACT’s underthings that also came in the box of goodies launching their new tees and tanks. A thought(ful) bubble cut out of the front ~ PUT ON SOMETHING GOOD ~ on the sides, and i’m just a sucker for beautiful printing on cardboard… and when you pop it open, the panties are wrapped around a cardboard insert that exclaims, “Change starts with your underwear.” Take a look at the packaging details on the next page!
Nothing quite like a big box showing up covered in “Change starts with your underwear” stickers. In 2009, we first wrote about PACT’s undies for a cause, well two years later, PACT, founded by entrepreneurs, Jason Kibbey & Jeff Denby, and designed by Yves Behar’s Fuseproject, has expanded their line of cause driven thongs and briefs to now include tees and tanks! Their twitter describes them as “Beautifully designed and responsibly made men’s and women’s underwear supporting powerful social and environmental causes.” They were kind enough to send over a big box of their latest goodies. From their fun, colorful line of designer undies, they have added V-neck Tees and Tank tops for women and V-neck tees and Crew-neck tees for men in slight variation of their smooth cotton/elastane blend. The design and packaging details are as much a part of the PACT experience as the goods ~ for web orders, the bookmark like labels give you the story and info on the related cause that is supported, and they are each individually wrapped in biodegradable plastic bags. Also, have to love their playful photography of the ideal loungey life ~ home office attire perhaps? Take a peek at the new collection freshly unboxed on the next page!
Composting offers a great way to turn your kitchen waste into something useful. Depending on your setup it can even be easier than doing the dishes. There are a number of strategies for working it into your life even for those without a lot of time or space. Today we decided to round up some of the interesting composting techniques and options we have today ~ from giant rollers, to worms doing the job for you, to magical Bokashi cultures, and the gorgeous little incognito kitchen counter contraptions you can use… see it all on the next page!
Just launched today ~ Bluelounge MiniDock! This magical little contraption means you can now charge your Apple gadgets directly from the wall socket, saving counter/floor space and cables. Perfect for hotels, sitting in airport lounges, bedside charging… you name it! As usual with Bluelounge the product feels great in your hands, the details are perfectly simple ~ as the press kit cover says “Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler,” quoting Albert Einstein. Take a peek at the unboxing as well as examples of it in use (and video!) on the next page!