I think i am obsessed with a large green glossy lacquered rocking chicken. Is that weird? Is it weirder that tonight i am obsessed with it because of Jamie Hayon's Lladro Fantasy Collection where he playfully mixes his designer goodness and attention to detail with the classic porcelain collectibles... But back to the chicken. It's giant. It's green. It's glossy. And i bet when you rock on it your mind fills with ideas and you get taken on a dreamy world of inspiration... or maybe thats the sleeping pill kicking in and i'm starting to fade and dream up ideas (how is it 3:30am?)? Regardless, between all the giveaways, thought you'd have fun taking a peek at the sketches and more images of the great green rocking chicken on the next page... see more at Jamie's site too!
Entries tagged with: toys
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First Gift Guide of the season, and while i promised friends and family i wouldn't do 31 days in a row like last year (it got crazy!), you can see Alyssa and i made up for it with quite the NOTCOT Holiday Coupon Book and a really exciting lineup of giveaways launching nearly everyday through xmas! (Funny thing is, as we get more excited and start posting up all these goodies as a huge THANK YOU to you, our readers, more stores we love keep contacting us wanting to share the love as well! So the list might grow... as do the coupons!)
So first guide, the REALLY fun stuff. Since gifts should be about the unexpected... those fun surprises that you never saw coming, or would never buy yourself yet secretly lusted for... So lets kick this off with Desk Toys and Stocking Stuffers! Below is a massive collage of some of my favorites, like last year, just click the products to be whisked off to find out more. I've also attached the relevant coupons below to help you out with any temptations you may come across! Enjoy!
The new VDC Mimobot series is too cute. So cute and incredibly detailed, it's creating quite a dilemma for me... while i have a few in my purse, on my desk, etc ~ there's usually been a standout one that love and need to have, this time there are a few! Argh! Hehe...
Ok anyhow, i'm a little delirious from massive gift guide planning, inhaling the smokey smell from fires all over socal (our wishes go out to everyone who is dealing with the fires first hand - be safe!), and shopping like crazy online right now... I've been meaning to post these, and only after getting far too distracted by them a few times, here we go! As the press release says, "Boston-based design studio Mimoco releases Vimobot Design Contest MIMOBOT Series, the company's first community-designed collection of MIMOBOT designer USB flash drives, preloaded with all-new mimoZine Digital Magazine Issue 4." And the new goodies are so tempting, i love the new wallpapers and icons! You have to check out the close up images of the new designs on the next page ~ details like the mushrooms, hidden spiders and skulls in the tiki, squid in the tattoos, cherry blossoms down the backs, so much to see in these little guys! I'm currently tortured picking between the Mimoshroom by Bananafromcanada, Golden Panda by Shandurrah, and Yakuza by Eetteekers... check out the MANY pics on the next page!
StrangeCo really knows how to keep the action going under my monitors ~ i am currently typing this staring at a rather large and colorful band of gorillas that look like they are attacking the current residents (some rabbids, a crazed mimobot, an overly jolly wish come true, and the rocketworld rhino that looks like its trying to fight back!)...
These new King Ken creatures are the the latest upcoming toys from Amos Novelties, from the mind of James Jarvis, as you can see, they sent over every colorway including the secret yeti/albino guy! The Mini King Ken series debuts worldwide on November 22, 2008! Just in time for stuffing stockings... (Also, LA kids, you can get them early at the 24 Hour Paper Magazine Dept Store tomorrow!!!)
Also, the new Toki Doki Captain Coco, an adorable monkey with his pixelated camo and banana (with toki doki brand of course) in his coconut helmet... and his adorable sidekick pineapple grenade that i'm completely smitten by, showed up as well! I've already separated them, since the Captain is far too large for life under the monitors...
Check out pics of them all unboxed and in the wild on the next page! It's been a crazy day, so i took this welcome distraction to run around the house and take pics of the little guys all over!
On fun packages to kick off the week ~ i love that HBO and Cornerstone Promotion have teamed up with Mimoco to promote their new new shows. As we saw on .org, The Official Vanache Blog received a Life and Times of Tim Mimobot earlier ~ and i just received "Vicky Pollard" from the freshly launched Little Britain USA (the american version of the extremely successful BBC comedy) that just started last night. This little USB is filled with videos introducing a few of the characters!
On noteworthy things from a creative/marketing perspective, i love that Mimobots have managed to really up the standards in giveaway USB drives filled with content, and that companies like HBO and Cornerstone are thinking outside of the box, designing collectible limited edition characters. In the case of the Little Britain USA characters, only 4000 of each were made. See more images on the next page!
Porsche Design just launched quite a few new products for kids and the holidays, and they are adorable (and gorgeous)! Part of me is so glad i don't have kids to buy these for, and the other part of me wishes i were a kid, so i could properly enjoy some of these! This is a selection of my favorites ~ from the baby boxster (SO cute) to the 911 Pedal Car to the Bobsleigh and Sledge to the 911 GT3 RSR racetrack set... it all looks so fun. See close ups and more details on the next page!
Rotofugi, the awesome toy store, has made an incredibly gorgeous little animation, The Collectors, which showcases some of our favorite toys animated and collecting... HUMANS! So awesome, totally made me smile. See it on the next page!
ATYPYK! With their playfully edgy line of products that never cease to amuse, the french design duo of ATYPYK are just as fun in person! On booths i was totally giddy to see at Maison + Objet, this was high on the list, and they did not disappoint! Such a fun booth display, both designers dressed in strikingly blue suits, and exciting new products for fall... my favorite being the mustache pencils! For those of us who have commitment issues (or decision making issues) to tattooing our mustaches on our fingers... these are the perfect way to switch them up with each mood.
Also noteworthy ~ their placemat like stack of product catalog one sheets... everything new playfully collaged in black and white on one side, and the back has all the current products... really, it just screams to be colored on. So take a peek at the pics on the next page to get an overview of all the goodies!
Merci beaucoup, Veuve Clicquot ~ who loves design as much as we do, and brought me to Paris to cover Maison et Objet 2008! More design discoveries to come... and i am just freshly back in LA... already!
UPDATE: a winner has been chosen and emailed! Thank you for all of your entries!
Jimmyjane launches their new Form 6 massager and you can win it! Just leave an amusing comment as to why you need this $185 designer massager more than anyone else, and i'll pick someone to send to the nice folks at jimmyjane once i have free time in Paris this week (hopping a flight at 3:30 today!).
This new Jimmyjane Form 6 massager is now completely waterproof, completely re-engineered with super subtle protruding buttons making the massager completely seamless/handle-less, and the gorgeous carrying case also acts as its storage/travel case and charger all in one! The original Form 6 picked up an IDEA award from BusinessWeed and the Industrial Designers Society of America, and honestly, i think this one far surpasses the original in design. So see a full unboxing and closeups of the details to this gorgeous new design on the next page, and don't forget to leave a comment to WIN IT!
Unexpected excerpt from the press release, "FORM 6 has been embraced as the gold standard by the sexual wellbeing market, where it is the product of choice for leading retailers and sex columnists. It has also been a crossover hit, performing as the best-selling premium handheld vibrating massager in top retailers for therapeutic massagers in the US, tripling their sales expectations."
[Above is my latest new toy - a mis-colored helmeted Astro-Krieg Rhino and my random capsule machine egg/rabbit at the fireplace in Park Chow] Next time you're in the SF area, you MUST stop by T.A.D. Gear at 660 22nd Street in SF - what they don't show you in their pics of the store is the Rocket World section, which is like the holy grail of Rocket World I.W.G toys and prints, and not only do they do all online fulfillment for both brands in this space but also have their design studio upstairs! So on the next page, i have a peek at the store, the gallery space, and the design studios... if you thought Shepard Fairey's studios were cool, you'll drool at how inspiring this space is!
So before the onslaught of images to walk you through our experience at the incredible converted warehouse space, here are a few quick points to note.
1) For anyone that like the great outdoors (or is a special op, or just likes being well shielded from the extremities), but has a NOTCOT type of aesthetic (love matte black? lack of logos? incredible attention to every detail?) - you have to check out T.A.D. Gear's jackets, pants, and backpacks before you reach for the next Patagonia catalog. Dan just ran off with his to Burning Man, so i'll try to get you some detail pics later.
2) If you don't need the hardcore gear, they have an amazingly well curated selection of quality outdoor accessories that had me giddy to shop even though i didn't really need more mini flashlights, otter boxes, knives, dental floss, and more...
3) Sure stores like A16 are all rugged and designy in their own right, but T.A.D. Gear feels museum-esque as you browse through the space - which leads to
4) Rocket World I.W.G creatures have their own dedicated section, and while at first it may sound odd to have some of the coolest vinyl toys showcased and designed by the same crew that makes some of the most impressive tactical gear i've seen... if you go, it will all make sense. Especially once you find out that Patrick Ma (aka "Otter X") has a background ranging from the army to a masters in art, a love of the animal kingdom to a calling towards fashion design... is it any wonder that all of his passions have perfectly fused into an incredibly well kept secret lair of custom designed tactical gear as well as some of the cutest most detailed badass animal toys out there?
Ok, sorry i'm rambling, but as you can tell, i was totally giddy there - blown away by the products and toys initially, and from a business/inspirational perspective, hearing Patrick's background and philosophies on business and how he's managed to keep focus on doing what he loves (as many varying things as that may be) for over 10 years now, without giving in to the many temptations to sell out along the way and still be extremely successful - especially when you're pursuing new and uncharted concepts/ideas!
Go see the pics on the next page!
Super Soaker "the original high performance blaster" Bottle Shot!!! Finally a fabulous upcycling use for all those empty water bottles you have, but are not supposed to have anymore. I am now up in SF (just drove up yesterday, hence the digital silence), and on the way up stopped by a target in the middle of nearly no where when i got tired... and couldn't resist this 5$ Super Soaker Bottle Shot! You can attach any bottle to it up to 2 liters (i'm dying to go find a gorgeous 2 liter bottle to try). Awesome thing, great water pressure (just used it to wash linhchi's windows while hanging out of them, and some hipsters totally stopped and watched which was awkward once i noticed) - shoots up to 20 ft, but we have yet to measure that... and unfortunately it doesn't pressure up like the old super soakers, so when you pump, it shoots! The only downfall is it is a little leaky around the pump - i tried to take it apart, but its 5$, plastic, and seems to be glued together... so we might hack it up.
On random ideas... why are there no designer water guns? We should have a competition, or just a friendly water gun design themed week/month/etc ~ i bet even modding some super soakers, we could make some incredible things... that lead to a designer water fight? Anyhow, i digress, see the pics of the awesome little water gun that can be expanded to have so much ammo on the next page!
While at Comic-con i finally got to take a peek at the FULL set of Friends With You's Wish Come True blindbox toys by StrangeCo... and i've been secretly wishing for the adorable red mushroom looking guy that was one of the mystery colorways! Anyhow, i was at Royal T in culver city today, and noticed the red guy as one of the open samples and had to have him... there is something so mesmerizing about rocking it in your hand as it refuses to fall over and emits this subtle chime like sound... (see the video on the next page to know what i mean)... i also decided to take a new approach on the unboxing of these guys... ripped the box open and scanned in the details so you can see all the graphic design that's so fun both on the exterior and interior of it! So go see the pics and vid on the next page!
Adorably evil ~ with its perfectly balanced archnemesis... Love this new little -Minus from Lab81, with his devious eyes, tiny side slanted horns, and batwings... and his positive counterpart is +Plus, who has that innocent wide-eyed look, tiny halo, and angelic wings. See more images of these adorable toys, their gold versions, and the incredibly lit window display on the next page!
Cleaning through Comic-con pics ~ as far as purchases go ~ these little guys were truly irresistible! the Rocket World Insurgent Wilderness Gruppo (aka I.W.G) crew in shrunken zipper pulls and airborne paratroopers! So here are some quick pics of the booth, the toys (i couldn't help myself and had to open them up at lunch, so yes, that's a fork in the pic - and a few so so pics from the hotel), and the packaging... adorably tiny boxes for all of these!
So, for those of you who follow my twitter or facebook ~ you already know i ran away to San Diego. It's been far too long since i've been back in these parts, and i'd forgotten how much i missed it! So, spent yesterday popping by all my old houses/apartments/neighborhoods/etc, getting a burrito, and hiding out in little italy. Anyhow, we just popped by comic-con today for a few hours, and it's absolute insanity, massive crowds, yet everyone is so nice, and they keep things flowing so well. Also - SO giddy to see the toys i've been lusting after... in person! And super nice to meet up with a bunch of the comics and toy guys in person as well, of course. So here's a mad roundup to show you some of my favorites, click the pic to see the full gallery of my images running around the convention floor... and now i think i'm off to the zoo.
On sex toys and massage tools that you can leave out, and people can easily assume they are sculptural play things - Jimmyjane has done it again with their new line of CONTOUR Ceramic Massage Stones. "Jimmyjane introduces CONTOUR Ceramic Massage Stones, offering a modern take on traditional hot stone massage. With smooth, polished surfaces, they glide over the skin, relieving tension as they go. CONTOUR Ceramic Massage Stones retain heat, and can be used at different temperatures for extra stimulation - warm them up to soothe or cool them down to refresh. Made from double-fired porcelain, they're ergonomic, bio- compatible, durable and easy to clean. With every surface designed for massage, each CONTOUR offers limitless possibilities." The designs are designed in house, and certainly have that distinctively minimalist style that is so Jimmyjane. For a mere $25 each, i'm extremely curious to get a pair to experiment with! See more close ups, and more information about the CONTOUR line (including some massage techniques) on the next page!
On the #1 thing i'm looking forward to at Comi-con (is it silly if i day trip to SD just for these?) ~ Rocket World's Insurgents Wilderness Gruppo ~ super armed yet oh so adorable creatures in the tiniest form yet! As blindbox zipper pulls and parachuters! The Zipper Pull Series will be about 1" tall, and including the original three I.W.G. members, there will also be human skulls, for a total of 17 colorways, two of which will be mystery chase figures! The Airborne Series of parachuters will be about 1.5" tall with high quality parachutes, and a total 15 colorways between the three characters, including TWO mystery chase figures! Anyhow, these are just a peek at what is to come at sdcc this year! More pictures on the next page, as well as pics of the making of...
My brain isn't quite sure how to handle it when two completely separate obsessions merge ~ today i was on Dezeen and it was Olivia Lee's "Limited Edition Designer Dolls" ~ bringing together my love of toys and designers - who are now like designer super heroes?
ZAHA! Empress of Architecture! KARIM! King of Plastic! JAIME! Chief of Ceramic!
I want them all. I also want the animated series to come out... Olivia's site says: Have you ever bought something only because it was 'designer' regardless of practicality or cost? Do you faithfully attend the various furniture fairs around the world from Milan to Shanghai? Do you have a favourite designer? Do words like Icon, Blueprint and Wallpaper mean more to you than a random string of nouns? If so, then welcome to The Cult of Design.
Limited Edition Designer Dolls pokes fun at the Design cognescenti. By carefully studying the visual languages and distinct personalities of some of the Design world's most formidable designers, this project is an observation of how designer personalities are literally becoming synonymous with the objects they design.
Not sure about you ~ but "pokes fun"? I think it's more like it embraces the obsession, and creates even MORE for design lovers to buy. See more pics of them in the making, packaging, sketches, etc on the next page!
NOTCOT Note: Here's another post from our friends at Sub-Studio!
Keeseh Studio is a design studio run by two talented RISD grads, Asher Dunn and Shane Richards. Both graduated this year - I was impressed by the quality of their student work and am looking forward to see what comes out of their studio this coming year.
Above is Asher's Upholstered Chair - I love the bent laminate chair shell - how the back curves to form the rear legs and how it sandwiches the cushions together. Also shown is his Serving Utensil, a nice translation of a common household object.
Remember when "toy stores" used to be for kids, then there was that shift of "toy stores" like kidrobot and giant robot... toys for grownups and saved in boxes as collectibles and untouchable toys when that vinyl toy trend kicked in hard? Well, due to some combination that i'm getting old and more of my friends are having babies, or its that time of year, i'm suddenly finding myself shopping for baby gifts more and more lately... and what's been really fun, is watching these vinyl toys transform back into stuffed toys for our little ones!
We all know that gifts for kids under 3 are really more gifts for their parents, seeing as the kids will barely remember them as they grow up anyhow. So for all the playful parents with a love for vinyl toys, various cheeky, slightly twisted characters, and designs from incredible artists... here's a little roundup of stuffed toy options which i am considering toys that have come full circle, and are perfect for the babies of parents who loved the originals that inspired them... break down of the toys above on the next page!
So. Cute. Adfunture has teamed up with quite the lineup: DITA Eyewear, Staple Design, Suitman, Revelator, Black Cross, GUE and Puma, to create this 100 piece limited edition series of YOKA SC Edition. The 10-inch tall vinyl figure will be put up for sale on June 12th, 2008. $100usd each, and only 100 pieces will be available. All sales will be donated to Red Cross Society of China. It's absolutely beautiful, and a gorgeous gesture on all of their parts to help with the tragedy in China... i particularly like the puma branding on his feet. More images on the next page...
Hey kids ~ i have one foot out the door, but just got an im giving me an sneak preview to tip you off on StrangeCo/Friends With You's Wish Come True's (isn't that a mouthful) contest that is launching... a contest involving stickers in the various blind box toys that are launching... and there's a Secret Map! The map graphic was so awesome, i stopped, postponed lunch, and had to throw this quick post up to share it with you... isn't it sweet? Anyhow, read more about how it works at the secret link here. Ok, i'm out... back in a bit perhaps...
In addition to my growing porcelain fascination this ICFF, i have also been noticing a lot of Foosball Tables going more high design. During the Conran Shop's Rojo opening (incredible! Definitely worth how wet i got in the rain to get there)... i came across the bright red metal RS Barcelona RS #2 foosball table designed by Rafael Rodriguez... and then saw the white one downstairs in the shop... the silver one at ICFF... and the coat rack versions in both the Conran Shop and ICFF. Really what stands out about this one is the bright metal frames and the arms and expressions on the player! Their faces scream "pass it to me! pass it to me!" with that excited/alert look... and their arms make them look like they are always on the go... which is admittedly, even funnier on a coat rack. There is also a hilarious stumpy super-buff silver and black set of players on another table i found at the Conran Shop that you've got to check out on the next page (and maybe one of you knows who made that one?)... see all the pics on the next page!
Finally! At the Designboom Mart, i had the pleasure of meeting Reiko Kaneko of the Egg Soldiers i had posted back as .org #7028! Fun thing was to finally get to poke at these in person, and check out the playful packaging!
"Egg Soldier Eggcup - Battle on the breakfast table: It's early in the morning..... Having been for a dip, the EGG quietly prepares for another day. Suddenly, from the end of the table, an army of BREAD SOLDIERS starts to approach. The MODEL SOLDIERS, fearing for the safety of their EGG, close in. They work hard to protect the EGG but one after another, the BREAD SOLDIERS just keep coming...." Images from the designboom mart at icff on the next page!
On more sneak previews of ICFF launches, how adorable is Hanno the Gorilla? "From the deepest jungles comes Hanno the Gorilla! Like Hanno the Navigator, the Greek voyager who discovered gorillas 2,500 years ago, your Hanno is brave, strong, and curious. Hanno's powerful hardwood frame can hold many poses. His elastic-band muscles and durable wood limbs make him almost impervious to breakage. Hanno cannot fly and is vaguely afraid of heights. Hanno is made from sustainably harvested new-growth beech wood." He is the brainchild of David Weeks, and will be available from Areaware's new AREAWARE jr. (their new children's division) starting in Sept 08. Check out a close up of this guy on the next page!