Good morning 3am London ~ it’s been quite the evening with Nike Football/Soccer, running around and ending up on buses with ~400 international press folks ~ ending up at Battersea Power Station in the rain with its huge purple projections, only to delve deeper into what some felt was like a bat cave or villainous lair of lights and steps and shiny new products to tempt us with. But the main attraction announced tonight (with the help of Cristiano Ronaldo) ~ was what all this purple was about! And my favorite part of course is not only the new shoe, the Nike Mercurial Vapor SuperFly II… but the magical glowingly purple glass/cement box that looked like an apple store in a shipping container. The purple dots on the glass became smaller and smaller until you could see the wall of shoes hung upon them… On the next page see pictures of the installation, the new Nike Mercurial Vapor SuperFly II, the new Nike Football+ iphone app (with twitter/facebook integrations), design sketches… and the full press release!
Entries tagged with: gifts
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On posts that are a bit overdue ~ catching up while curled up in London right now ~ one of the sweetest packages came over from the boys of High Snobiety and Selectism ~ super fun letterpressed coasters! With their logos on the fronts and urls on the backs ~ and an adorable little “Thanks for 2009, Drink to 2010.” message holding them all together. While i adore these… the making of video is even more mind blowingly mesmerizing to watch! You have to check it out and more pics & details on the next page!
On fun things that showed up before i left for NY/London ~ a super sized Absolut shoe box of sorts filled with their new Absolut Berri Acai! A whole giant liter of the delectable new liquor appeared buffered by crunchy purple padding, adorned with a few recipes… It’s quite refreshingly yummy mix of acai, blueberry, and pomegranate ~ in that fruity healthy sort of way! See the unboxing and recipes on the next page!
On new shoe technology i gave in and had to try… Kenneth Cole’s 925 Technology was too fascinating not to pass up when i knew i’d be running around in inclimate weather through NY and London the next week… And i DID need some basic black pumps… and they feel crazy comfy/bouncy and are filled with things like Memory Foam, Cork, Flaxseed, and Sheepskin even! (See the dissected diagram on the next page!) The rubbery sole means really being able to bend in ways my pumps have never bent before… which after the last few days i’m a little mixed on the overly bendiness, it’s as if you have to hold yourself up even MORE in a way… though when i slipped back into my favorite louboutins they felt like i was in a thin padding free shell… if only i could get that memory foam in all my shoes?
On fun additions to the world of the Standard New York ~ their new store is like a wonderland of practical and playful designer goodies. Greeted by a giant ALL FOR YOU made of ring pops ~ you discover a hotel store filled with everything from forgotten amenities like meds and toothpaste in card catalog drawers to power adapters and magazines… and then fun gifts like the beautifully bound penguin classics to giant dunnys to glossy apples and stunning jewelry… and of course there are even naughtier gifts like vibes and condoms that you can wrap in raunchy double sided wrapping paper and pair with chocolate! See lots of pics on the next page!
This is the first of a new experiment ~ Dear NOTCOT ~ think of it as our version of letters to the editor ~ SO many stories of amazing experiences filled with inspiration and creativity from our friends like you ~ i’m working on convincing you to share them with us in your own words! And filled with pics of course, since its fun to see the world through your eyes! So hopefully more to come! And if you think you have a visually inspiring adventure to share, feel free to drop us a line!
Heath Ceramics ~ stunning tile and table work ~ i hadn’t realized that they’ve been doing their thing since 1948. Currently lusting after their tile work! Their main store and studio are in Sausalito and they recently teamed up with Adam Silverman of Atwater Pottery for their LA location. Julie Wolfson had a chance to go hang out and chat with Adam as he worked on pieces for Playmountain in Tokyo! On the next page you can see her adventures at Heath filled pics and quotes she came back with!
Oh, Incase, you’ve done it again. Your surprise packages always blow me away… and now i’m terribly jealous of your amazing TAPE!!! Matte black with the Incase signature topographic pattern in gloss… you’ve taken packing tape lust to a new level! AND its on a soft touch rubberized feeling matte black BOX. Yes, i couldn’t help rubbing the box before i even got to opening it.
Of course, once inside the box, there is one of the 3 new Evan Hecox (Incase curated by Arkitip) sets of iphone cases and laptop sleeves ~ this one is the Tokyo edition (there is also London and New York!)… Beautiful details, take a peek at the artwork and unboxing on the next page…
And as always ~ love the Incase motto “A better experience through good design.”
On cell phone obsessions ~ i love a great button. I used to love my old Sony Ericsson joystick. There’s something about my blackberry’s trackball thats just so fun to spin. That indentation of the iPhone button just feels good to click! Latest button lust? On the new HTC Desire and HTC Legend phones launching today… they feature a brand new OPTICAL TRACKBALL! In the conference call announcing them they said trackball, in the press release it says joystick… really you can call it what you want, basically they’ve described it as a little optical sensor ever so slightly depressed in the center of a single solid ring of a button. I can’t wait to try this physical interface in person!
Perhaps one of the most enticing aspects of HTC, beyond their hardware that feels SO good in your hand… is their dedication to great UX ~ above and beyond what is provided through Android and Win Mobile! At the Mobile World Congress today, they are not only announcing new phones, but also the latest iteration of HTC Sense - “HTC Sense is a user experience focused on putting people at the centre by making phones work in a more simple and natural way. This experience revolves around three fundamental principles that were developed by observing and listening to how people live and communicate. These core tenets of Make It Mine, Stay Close and Discover the Unexpected continue to be the key to the new HTC Sense experience.” The new version adds more features that are focused around your most important people with the HTC Friend Stream (pulling in from facebook, twitter, flickr, and more). See more details on the next page!
HAPPY Valentine’s Day, Chinese New Year, and President’s Day! (Did i miss any? What a long weekend this is!) And i’m back! After quite a bit of travel/meetup madness, drove back to LA, then hid out last night, only to wake up to the crashing of socal waves outside the window.. and i’m feeling more excited and rejuvenated than ever for what 2010 has in store for NOTCOT.
SO! To celebrate this holiday trifecta of a weekend, our friends at SUCK UK have put together a super fun bundle for you… I’ve decided to split things up a tiny bit ~ 2 ways to win! So here’s what to do and what you might win:
3 Guns Table Vase, Mixtape USB Stick, and Silver Plated Love Hearts Sweet (A perfect replica of the classic sweet. Says “I Love You”) ~ FOR A CHANCE TO WIN: Leave a note with what you have planned for this weekend! I’ll email the winner on Tuesday the 16th of Feb.
Mixtape USB Stick ~ the TWITTER giveaway ~ follow me, @NOTCOT, and tweet @NOTCOT with your pick for the ultimate mixtape song and use #notsuck so i can find it. I’ll D the winner on Tuesday the 16th of Feb, so make sure you’re following @NOTCOT!
Have an amazing weekend!!!
They are finally nearly here! Andrew Bell teased me with sneak peeks of toys in the making on his phone over lunch a few months back ~ so long as i promised to stay quiet. Well, it’s been hard! Because, we all know as fun as the Google Android phones and UI are… i’m pretty smitten with the adorable mascot. And here they finally are! A series of blind box toys bringing that adorable little Android to life!
The details? Illustrator and toy designer Andrew Bell has teamed up with a few friends at Google’s Android project to bring their green mascot to life. Presenting Android mini collectibles series 01! Each 3” vinyl figure sports one of 12 different possible designs and features a rotating head and arms. Packed in “blind boxes” so you don’t know which design you get until you open it up. Pick one up and take a chance or grab a case for a near-complete set. Available in an initial limited release later this month from dyzplastic and specialty retailers.
If you’re ready, see more details on the next page! (And notice he says “Series 01”… will there be more???)
Fusion Brands’ FoodPod ~ i ran into it at A+R and it was so odd, i couldn’t stop poking at it. Then i had to buy it. It’s another silicon creation from Fusion Brands to help in the kitchen… they are certainly creative with their ability to solve problems i didn’t even realize i had. Like keeping my veggies/eggs separate from other things, or together in the pot for easy removal… here you can fill the FoodPod with just about anything… and then you can dunk it into your boiling pot of water, and even hook the angler fish looking top to the lip of the pot for easy retrieval! lift and autostrain ~ unhook the cap, and your food is ready! See more pics of it on the next page!
Who knew wine in a bag could be so… designer? functional? pretty? Or that a decanter could aerate and feed the wine right back into the bottle? Leave it to Danish company MENU to help us rethink the way we interact with our wine! I love the the Wine Breather Carafe ~ which can be used either by attaching it to the bottle, and flipping it… then flipping it back into the bottle, OR serving it out of the carafe. It’s designed by Norm, idea and patent by Peter Orsig. (Doesn’t the shape remind you of those adorable Aladdin sake bottles?) Also fun is the Baggy Wine Coat designed by Jakob Wagner ~ wine in a bag never looked so ruggedly high tech. Also cute in the new collection ~ Norm’s stackable, spherical, tripod set for condiments! So playful, they’d be delightful in a restaurant! Take a peek at all of these up close on the next page!
While at A+R Store today, i couldn’t resist these lovely Manymals silver necklaces. Sleek simple shapes ~ Bat, Sloth, Gorilla, Bulldog ~ designed by Markus Diebel. And as if i didn’t love them enough then… they teased me with the packaging, which is so AWESOME! I nearly didn’t want to open it, but i was dying to wear my new bat tonight! Sleek black packaging molded out of 100% recycled paper. Playful typography on the back panel describing each creature… and 5% of sales go to WildAid! Ok but beyond how pretty the pieces look, you have to see how cool the packaging is on the next page!
As emails came in today, i was taken by the Net-A-Porter mailer about their latest spread Rebel Rebel with Rick Owens’ spring collection. Beyond the gorgeous images, the quotes were what really grabbed me in their interview with him. Both quotes embody much of how i like to see the world ~ and once i found out he is a SoCal native currently living and working in Paris, his perspective makes perfect sense. Take a peek at a bit more on the next page.
Fresh in from Artecnica, the latest in their Design W/ Conscience program with MAL / Media Arts Lab part of TBWA\, Artecnica to find designer solutions to recycling their large format billboards. Remember their Artecnica + TBWA\ Recycled Stretch Bag? Well, these new Laptop Cases are lined with black neoprene to add softness and protection to the case, and come in 13” and 15” sizes. See more images of the case on the next page.
On unexpected gifts that made me LOL and people who’ve helped me navigate the fun intersection between design, advertising, business, online media, and more ~ Chas ran off to India for the holidays (surprisingly, not to find himself, like others i know have been) ~ as advisor and old friend of NOTCOT ~ i asked him to show me some awesome design from india ~ leave it to an ad man to find a way to mix his passion and mine ~ i was gifted with this book (and lots of pictures of india! including ads of india! But also the beautiful found throughout on his adventures.) But back to the book: Welcome To Advertising Now Get Lost by Omkar Sane. The book cover cracked me up. The idea that it had so many playful illustrations throughout was great as well. And if you read it ~ it’s a playful look at the world of ad agencies in india… from the creative directors to the art directors to the clients to the pitches and more… perhaps a lot of it is similar to how it works here. And amidst making a mockery of much of the process (filled with local references), it’s pretty funny, and an amusing perspective on how things work. And as creatives who may either live in a similar world, or tap in to it regularly ~ you’ve got to take a peek at some of the illustrations inside by Aindri Chakraborty on the next page.
On silly little kid stories, when i used to hang out at guitar stores with my dad, i’d be that little girl the store guys would let play with the pick drawers, and they’d always let me have a few… my favorites? Dunlop Tortex! In Green of course! Because i was in that rational “it HAS to be green, its a turtle” little kid mindset, and while knowing it made a difference, i refused to care about how thick it was, what the different colors meant, etc… i just wanted the green ones… flash forward about 20 years, and is it any wonder that my absolute favorite booth encountered at NAMM is Dunlop? The graphic design of the posters and the design of the booth itself were so much fun, the kind of inspiring that makes you want to go design gig posters… and i could have stayed and stared at the panels of custom guitar picks for hours. Also, how exciting is it that there will be a documentary film coming this spring on the Cry Baby? Seeing that awesomely designed poster just made me remember being a little girl balancing on the wah wah pedals amused no end with all the noises i could make… And really, how could i not post the Bad Mutha Fucka Shut Yo Mouth posters… all of the graphics at this booth were really far too fun to pass up. Take a little tour of it all on the next page!
The super sweet folks of Ultimate Ears (an irvine based Logitech company) ~ reached out and invited me to visit them at NAMM ~ and little did i know that when i arrived at their booth, i’d be sat down in an ominous white leather chair, while Dr. Noy in white lab coat and all would make me bite down on a piece of foam while he filled my ears with mysterious blue quick drying goo. Ok, so to be fair, that’s the creepier way of wording it, basically they took impressions of the inner workings of my ears for some custom fit earphones by Ultimate Ears - while i’ve never been much of a headphone connoisseur, they’re catching me up quickly… i’ve been using their 700s since the unboxing and the sound quality has been awesome… but people can’t seem to stop raving about the customs… not to mention i’m fascinated by the idea that they can be customized to your heart’s content (color, graphics, etc) and they fill fit perfectly into your ears (and only your ears! unless you find an ear twin?)… more to come once i actually figure out how i want to customize my customs (any suggestions?) ~ but for now, take a peek at the fun Ultimate Ears NAMM booth! It had quite the crowd, but i tried to sneak a few fun pics of the ear molding process and some of the examples that were out!
Popped by NAMM (think CES of Music Making) on Saturday ~ it was so fun to explore and discover some great visual (and auditory!) inspiration. Besides, how often do you get to check out a structure made of orange amps… Check out this great unmissable booth setup. And i’m loving the iconic Orange Amps look and crest design…
With all of this Ice Ball talk on my mind from the Macallan, when i saw the Muji Silicon Ice Ball Maker at the Muji To Go store in JFK’s Jet Blue terminal, i couldn’t resist grabbing two to play with. Been rushing around a bit non stop, but as tired as i was when i got in, first thing i had to do was fill one of these up with water and stick it in the freezer! Was too tired to wait for water to boil before filling it ~ so it does lack some of the potential clarity due to the cold tap water that went in. Overall it worked pretty well though! And the novelty of spherical ice is pretty fun! Though not nearly as exciting as making it with the Macallan ice machine… see more pics of the instructions and muji device on the next page… been starting to think about what else you can do to get creative with spherical ice…
Tonight, Macallan brought me out to Soho House in NY for quite the surreal experience: Flights of the Decades. Beyond the amazing ice balls (which i’ve been dying to see in action for some time now) ~ tonight i had the opportunity to talk so the inspirational visionary @MacallanKen (aka Ken Grier, Director - Malts) about everything from photography to life adventures to how baking cakes is a lot like scotch… but most importantly, about doing/enabling extraordinary things and people. Also finally got to meet @LivingTheDram (aka Graeme Russell - Macallan Ambassador) ~ with whom i’ve long tweeted about scotch from afar. And everyone at this lovely event was tweeting up a storm ~ all of which were showing on the screen (in fact, if you were using the #macallan hashtag during dinner, you too were up on screen!) To take it even further, we had the opportunity to taste not only the New Make Spirit straight from the source before reaching casks… Macallan cask strength 18 year sherry oak… Macallan 50 year… and even Macallan 52 year. It was. WOW. And seeing the Lalique decanters and the carbon fiber (looking?) box it’s packaged in… as well as one of the 1000 unique Rankin bottles up close… all in all it was a beautiful experience, with fun people, delicious food, great conversations… now go see the many random photos on the next page for a peek at the experience!
On bizarre and fascinating design found at AVN this weekend… i found these Tenga Eggs in person, and i couldn’t help laughing when i saw them (yes, i tried to hold it in, but it was just so fascinating!). If they seem familiar, they were on NOTCOT.org as #18467 a while ago. And when they were first submitted, we couldn’t make sense of what they were for a bit… well now that they are being distributed by Liberator (they specialize in “bedroom adventure gear”)… so they were part of a big booth at AVN filled with beautifully designed toys. We even had a chance to meet the designer himself. Now as for how they work… these are bizarre eggs that are male pleasure toys, but they come in the most adorable plastic eggs (like kids easter eggs, or toys from machines you pop a quarter in to)… and inside you find an “egg shaped masturbation sleeve” ~ and they come in 6 different internal textures. “Although intended for a single session, the cup could be used a couple of times if handled and cleaned carefully.” Anyhow, take a peek at the pics of the packaging, products, and funny video on the next page!
It’s always hard after a full day of racing around the show floor at CES to decide what to share first - as my body wants to dive in a bubble bath and my brain is getting ready for drinks, dinner, etc. SO, don’t laugh, but the first thing i have been craving since i saw the adorable minimalist mod booth… Mint: Automatic Floor Cleaner… think swiffer meets roomba, but with a design treatment by Yves Behar’s Fuseproject… and hyperintelligent guts by Evolution Robotics, Inc. This feels like my Method oMop’s futuristic robotic relative. So yes, stunning, wicked smart, cleans with popular we/dry cleaning cloths (think swiffer/pledge/etc), AND charges upright!
Also fun? Besides the booth design and beautifully designed product? They throw coffee on the floor… let it dry a little… then demo the machines. And i love how versatile the concept is, you can use any cloth ~ and the panel that they attach to is MAGNETIC! More pictures of the details and a video on the next page from my CES discovery of Mint! (It officially launched at midnight!)
As delicious as certain liquors are… you all know that spontaneous packaging based impulse buys are how the weird stuff often ends up here. Well recently at Mitsuwa, the adorable little sakes were calling out to me and i couldn’t resist. I also couldn’t resist shaking up the nigori ones… which of course meant i then had to let them sit for a day or so in my fridge so they’d fully settle (all that unfiltered sediment sinking to the bottom) so i could show you the difference when i took pics! But how amazingly cute are these Aladdin Sake bottles? They’d make the prettiest little vases for your desk… And the way the top opens is fascinating as well. So take a peek at them all on the next page! (And no, i haven’t tasted any of them yet ~ too tired tonight, but wanted to show you the packaging first!)
Black and White. Angel and Devil. Fun illustrations. Hilarious how to on the back, showing how this egg topper (with the three little blades inside) can even double as a napkin ring (won’t it slice up your napkin possibly? if used right?)… and brain sperm logo. And it’s both the egg decapitator AND the holder. Genius. So of course you understand that i couldn’t resist this adorable german pair of Brain Stream Cregg & Cregg while in Stockholm… and i only just got around to testing them out ~ pictures of the experience and details on the next page!