There’s something fun about when art and function come together. Take a look at these DEMONBELLS i found on Uncrate! Will these sculptural alternatives to your standard (pretty ugly) kettlebells make your work out better? Probably not. Will it make me more likely to be amused while working out? Possibly. But it will definitely make it less of something that begs to be hidden, and instead will become an intriguing conversation piece… even as a doorstop. Created by former Navy SEAL, Ryan Williams, these DemonBells were commissioned art pieces brought to life by a local San Diego Master Sculptor. They are made in China from 100% recycled steel, not iron, and injection molded for a smooth finish which is then black powder coated. From their site, “Each piece in the DemonBell line started individually with an ornamental design inspired from various global and cultural influences. Through extensive testing and evaluation of working prototypes, we have finally produced the fully functional works of art you see here. Each directional weight carries its own unique modifications, from anatomically designed handle grips and specific weight distribution for balance, to specially angled backs to match forearm angles during snatch movements. We designed each DemonBell while paying as much attention to function as we did form.” Take a peek at the whole collection of 4 on the next page!
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I’ve been lusting after the Parrot AR.Drone for years, (remember their amazing outdoor play area at CES in jan?) not sure why i never gave in to it till now, but NOTlabs definitely needs some fun toys… and running around Fry’s, there was one just there… calling to be brought home! So here’s a peek at the unboxing ~ and a few random images from test flights… but to be honest, it’s so fun to fly, it’s hard to remember to take pics of it at the same time, especially cell phone pics since you’re using iPhone/iPad and/or Android to control it! Touted as the first AR Flying Video Game, it’s gorgeous, amusing, surprisingly stable and even has two cameras mounted on it (front facing and downward facing)… so take a look at what’s inside the box on the next page…
p.s. i’m sure Shawn will be coming up with more NOTlabs projects to dronehack this one in to when we’re not busy flying it around the lab/yard. So more to come… and we might need another to properly play each other!
p.p.s. fun to see what other apps people have been developing for it!
Another highlight from Superdesign was David Roux-Fouillet’s Diamond Shot, a fun and unique way to set a diamond. That’s right, specially made bullets are quite literally shot into jewellery to create the setting. Roux-Fouillet’s bullets are composed of 24ct gold, diamond, tool steel, and ivory, turtle shell, bull horn or silk (depending on the model). Bullets can be fired into rings, earrings or pendant structures made of platinum or 9ct gold. More photos of the setup and a video of the setting in action on the next page!
Last night, popped by the latest show of Peter Gronquist, The Evolution Will Be Fabulous at Gallery 1988 in Venice. It’s AMAZING, definitely something worth checking out in person, because the mix of gilded luxe brands, weaponry, skeletons and taxidermy are just something you can’t completely comprehend through pictures… the shear scale of things is pretty mesmerizing in real life. But for now, take a peek at some pics and details on the next page!
On fun contraptions that might make kitchen life a tiny bit simpler, i’m liking these Orange Juice Makers and Flash Chill Lemonade Makers from Takeya. Simple swappable screw top lids allow you to juice right into the container before you serve or pop it into the fridge! See more pics of them in action on the next page.
I love when things just fall together. Like yesterday ~ finding out that the gorgeous AETHER APPAREL (who has been a kind supporter of NOTCOT over the years through beautiful advertising!) is actually LA based! And love matte black/metal/wood minimalist gear, gadgets, and cars/etc as much as we do. They just took the mobile pop up shop to a whole new level with their AETHERstream ~ designed by Thierry Gaugain, this airstream that has been gutted and retrofitted with reclaimed wood floors, modular shelving, and vintage gadgets/gear… and their storage? Stacks of huge pelican cases! It’s a beautiful (though tight) space ~ and it was great to see the majority of their collection in person finally… the tiny details were amazing ~ from quality of materials and stitching (it just feels so GOOD!) to the awesome black safety pins they use to attach their tags and the Aether whistles on each piece. Take a little tour in and around the AETHERstream on the next page ~ it will be hanging out in LA for a few weeks before it heads cross country to NY by mid nov!
When i first saw the post titled “romantic star projector” over at Design Crush, i thought it sounded ridiculous. Then i couldn’t seem to stop staring at the pics. And there is something overwhelmingly awesome about the abundance of lights all around the room… and i can’t help wondering what it would look like if i turned off all the lights in my office, dimmed the monitors… and turned one on! You build it yourself ~ but can purchase the set up ~ and can even arrange it to mimic the night sky outside ~ or pick another spot on the globe… or another time. Take a peek at the pics and the set up on the next page.
Tara McPherson’s Lilitu (2010) painting is going 3D ~ here’s a sneak peek at the new Kidrobot Black piece by Tara McPherson… rising up out of a pool of black with fiery red hair… This 8” vinyl will have a limited run of 200 pieces.
Who is she? “This painting is based on the Sumerian myth of the demon Lilitu. Representing chaos, seduction and ungodliness. She is a sexually charged yet infertile succubus who behaves aggressively toward men and children killing them at her every whim, her breasts are filled with poison not milk. In her every guise, Lilitu has cast an evil spell on humankind.” See a full spin around of the new vinyl on the next page… (perhaps slightly nsfw).
This monday morning i’m obsessed with a design icon. Found myself scouring the net for pics of the classic Eames La Chaise ~ “Charles and Ray Eames designed La Chaise in 1948 for a competition at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, inspired by “Floating Figure”, a sculpture by Gaston Lachaise. It is the unbelievable elegance of this assertive seating sculpture that enables any number of sitting and reclining positions, which is so very appealing. It has long since established itself as an icon of Organic Design.” La Chaise by Vitra is made with two fused fiberglass shells with a chrome base and natural oak feet. It’s just so beautifully sculptural, fascinating, AND comfortable to lounge in… see more pics i found on the next page.
When this came into my inbox, my heart lept a little. I have a soft spot for pool tables, particularly clean, sleek ones that can disappear as your dining/conference table. Also the look and style of this is so similar to my Aramith Fusion Table. This new James Perse limited edition pool table is constructed from environmentally farmed solid teak and matches their furniture line. The table is solid teak, regulation 4’x 8’ size, matte black Simonis Combed Worsted Wool Playing Surface, matching wood triangle and diamond racks, leather custom pockets, stainless steel sights, heavy duty vibration leveling feet, is hand made in the USA, and includes a full set of accessories. It also has an optional dining/conference table top. See more images and the tear sheet on the next page!
I couldn’t resist buying German toys at the Munich airport on the way home. Even if they are for toddlers and up… i was fascinated by the way the connectors work on the Mic-O-Mic building systems and when i couldn’t decide which to get to try it out, i bought four - a little boat, car, helicopter, and seaplane. And they are awesome! Solid plastic. Ok to toss in the water. They are connected by little plastic pegs that perfectly fit and rubbery eye mask like pieces that allow a nice flexibility to connections. They even come with a tweezer like tool made of the pieces themselves to pinch-remove or push-hammer in the pegs with. Nice simple graphical pictures to diagram how to assemble each as well, and for the more creative ones, they have extra pieces and are all modular enough to mix and match. Take a peek at the sets on the next page!
p.s. yes, i built these on the bed in my jetlaggedness…
Going through the many pics from the last month of euro-madness ~ i couldn’t stop staring at these pics from the Wiesmann booth at IAA. If i were a Batman: the Animated Series character, i’d totally drive a matte metallic GT MF5. It’s so cute. I couldn’t stop staring at the show ~ and looped by the booth a few times for unknown reasons… it just pulled me in over and over. And now i can’t stop staring at the pics, so clearly they needed to be shared! And the jeweled lizard logo is just stunning and brings out the little kid in me too… take a peek at them on the next page…
Nothing screams fall quite like watching the leaves change… then drop. Then get mounded up, composted, crushed, collected, and jumped into! (You have to see the monster leaf pile vid on the next page!) So we’ve rounded up some of the awesome and fun contraptions and more we’ve found on the next page!
We joked about Nail Polish Colors to match cars when i was playing with the Louboutins on the Mars Red C63… then i found the Mercedes Designo Zircon Red SLK inspired polish… well at AMG yesterday, they gave me a bottle of Le Mans Red SLS inspired nail polish… so at the AMG SLS Roadster drive in Nice/Monaco today, i couldn’t help trying it out to see just how “inspired” the nail color was from the car also in Le Mans Red… the conclusion (well you can judge for yourself on the next page as well) is that it needs a bit more metallic in it to be fully awesome… but it is still quite the bright red!
This post is brought to you by Mercedes-Benz. Every day, we strive to fulfill one simple promise: the best or nothing. Visit MBUSA.com to learn more.
There’s something about the way Hard Graft always manages to craft their accessories that brings an air of elegance and rugged simplicity in balance. Their latest Driftwood and Campfire lines take travel to the next level with the Square1 Holdall, Dopp Kit, and Personal Pouch. Personally, i can’t take my eyes off the extremely versatile looking Square1 Holdall in Driftwood ~ though it does see a tad big for a girl my sized, the functionality of the shape as an overnight/weekender seems perfect. Crafted in Italy and made of premium suede and leather it transforms before your eyes from flat squarish holdall, to totebag, to backpack, to handheld and more… take a peek at all the details on the next page!
Continuing our exploration of Mini HD Action Cameras (So far there’s the roundup, unboxing the GoPro, and unboxing the Contour+) ~ so here’s an unboxing of the germany based, GoBandit. The packaging is good fun, and they have super playful branding that tells you to Shoot Your Adrenaline! what’s most unique about the GoBandit seems to be its software side ~ tracking GPS, speed, and altitude, there are a variety of skins (perhaps someday customizable?) that can overlay your videos to show the data as well as a map alongside to see where you’ve gone. As far as tech specs, it isn’t the most powerful on the market ~ shooting only 720p video, 5mp camera, 135 degree angle of view ~ but is waterproof up to 1m for 30 min without additional housing, and you can embed your videos complete with navigable maps/altitude/speed graphs! And their GoBandit Community is definitely going for the competitive angle on action cam videos sorting videos by FASTEST and HIGHEST! We’re still playing around with it at the moment ~ but check out the unboxing and details of the camera on the next page!
This post is brought to you by Mercedes-Benz. Every day, we strive to fulfill one simple promise: the best or nothing. Visit MBUSA.com to learn more.
There’s something fun about pieces that take on such a mesmerizing yet sculptural form… like the The Limited Edition Melting Chair by Philipp Aduatz. It has a beautifully mirrored surface that captures a transitional state somewhere between solid and liquid. To capture this liquifying (or solidifying) effect, Aduatz studied the solidification of fluids as well as the melting of solids using 3D animation software. The chair is made from a fiber glass reinforced polymer that takes on a mirrored appearance due to a special silver coating and scratch resistant polyurethane lacquer. Feels very… terminator, doesn’t it? Take a peek at more pics on the next page!
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!
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!