Ever wonder what it would feel like to have bark? Yes, like tree bark… on your arm. Well check out these bracelets which are actually cast from birch bark. These are by Twig and Heather who say “There’s nothing quite like the detail found in the bark of these trees. Cuff bracelets and rings can be light or heavy, big or small.” Also their twigs and acorns that have been cast in silver are adorable and woodsy yet the silver gives them that extra something. Also check out the great bunny leaping bunny below.
After working on NOTCOT.org far too long - Jermacide fell out of his apt in Hayes Valley, SF this morning to check out the Capsule Street Festival For Design. You can see pictures below of some of the crafty goods, masses of people, and even the bald guy from Bald Guy Greetings out enjoying the bizarre heatwave we got all through California today. It’s been absolutely gorgeous out today.
My great escape from the everyday yesterday was Marie Antoinette. Mediocre reviews all around from LATimes and WSJ ~ but there are some movies you don’t see for plot, you already know whats going to happen. This was audio and visual eye candy all around. The music is as deliciously playful as the outfits, the overly decorated pastries, the incredible gardens at sunrise, the shoes, giant stacked hair with birds all around ~ not a detail out of place - except what was up with the pair of blue converse in a scene where she’s changing clothes/trying on shoes? Or was i seeing things? I loved it. I’d watch it again just to escape into a different world. [oh, and that type face on the bright pink on the black - it just works so well. and my mom’s biggest complaint? Dunst looks a bit old to be playing 12-early 20s - and i need the soundtrack : 2 discs of classical, 80’s, punk glam goodness, perfect for working to - for 14$ - oh - and there’s not as much as much sex and debauchery as they imply its PG-13]
Picture below - i thought it was interesting how Sony Pictures chose to push the PSP on the movie’s site by having clips play in a PSP facade.
My purse hunt for something lush black and leathery came to a momentary pause when i found this new bag. Being my latest obsession ~ it felt like a sunday kind of post. Anna Corinna mini City Tote (the far right picture shows the larger version)… but the leather is so supple, and the size just perfect to throw in wallet and such and use the shoulder strap as the bag flaps over on itself like normal purse size - yet for the days i need to throw a bit more in there like my larger sketchbook and ipod and digicam and cables and more ~ fits perfectly and its comfortable to grab it as a tote bag.
While at Digital Life last weekend, one of the unexpected outstanding finds was definitely Blurb.com. I like their branding. The logo is cute. And their website is warm and inviting as far as the colors and site design go, or maybe its the combo of the with the picture of that photographer in the woods. Also they create their own language with the introduction of Blurbarians and the Blurberati. And their booth in the midst of all the over tech’d out gamer booths was a breath of fresh air (bookshelf facade and all). While at the booth, checked out their software (just played with it again, and its got a nice simple yet powerful UI) ~ as well as a sample of their books, and the print quality is exceptional, and a great affordable way for creatives to print/show portfolios.
Their service takes what the Apple iPhoto book printing only dreams to~ improves upon it and makes it more accessible to PC users as well. In a nutshell, they just put the power of having a publishing house at your fingertips - you can customize every page, filled with color images - and receive a 30 page glossy hardcover book for a mere 30$… and the book really is beautiful, cheaper than many portfolios, and makes incredible gifts. In addition to being able to design it death ~ their software also includes various pre-made templates, so even your grandmother could tackle the book publishing business. And coming soon for bloggers - publish your blog into a book at the touch of a button. Blurb.com
[p.s. they didn’t pay me for this one - i just kind of fell for them]
Diem Chau has mad skills when it comes to crayon carving… i keep finding myself stopping this post writing to go stare at the pictures again. Chau also has an incredible passion for storytelling, especially of the oral tradition. I love this quote from her statement “My grandmother told some of the best and most unique tales. She had a wonderful way of spicing up the traditional fable. According to her, Cinderella was kept from the Prince’s ball by having to sort a jumble of Mung beans, Red beans and Soybeans. Snow White went on many dates with Prince Charming before they got married, their first date being a picnic in the park with sandwiches and sliced melons. These small deviations are what fascinate me with oral traditions. Ordinary events injected into fantasy worlds make them more believable but, at the same time, it makes them extraordinary. Stories enable us to live a more vivid life.” Her grandmother ought to write them down and publish them - with her crayon carvings to illustrate it… i’d buy that.
Can you believe this is the 1000th post on NOTCOT.com? It kind of feels more exciting than a birthday. (granted i’m behind in projects, overworked, and working on this friday night… i guess part of me wishes i had a reason to escape and celebrate something!)
Anyhow, thought a good 1000th post is this Art of Complex Problem Solving that Asvetic posted to .org… because problem solving is no easy task, but evolving .com and .org have kept me on my toes and constantly finding new problems to solve and things to learn. And seriously - how gorgeous are these images? Some of the most impressive uses of rollovers i’ve seen lately. Great content, presented beautifully…
With so many new users, we’ve been really excited with the response people have had to NOTCOT.org in the last 21 weeks - So we’ve been working extremely hard (Jermacide in particular) to get this new system up and running. Here are some of the new features ~ and if you haven’t registered yet - come try it here!
* NOW SECRET CODE FREE!
NOTCOT.org is doing some growing up. We have finally let go of the secret code, and have created a more robust system where literally anyone can submit… all you need to do is register. Once registered, submissions will go directly to our submissions page, and upon approval by an editor, they will appear on the front page…. OH! and there’s a preview when you post now, so you have a chance to edit after you post, and if you are as lazy as i am and don’t want to click save, don’t worry, it will automatically post it if you do nothing.
*Why, yes, you can go straight to the front page.
Based on the number of posts you’ve made, and how many of those posts make it to the front page, [insert mumbo jumbo about complex algorithm/thought process here] you may notice your posts appearing automatically on the front page. Likewise… if your posts start to drop off the main page or do not appear there immediately, no worries, great content sometimes has to be filtered out to maintain the bizarre style of notcot.org, but feel free to post away
* NOW WITH SEARCH!
Up in the top right corner! It currently searches the captions - more incentive to write better captions? We look forward to developing this aspect further, but baby steps people…
* View all posts by a user
In case some of you have yet to try this - you can click on a user’s name in a post and see all of their posts.
So while i keep telling you i’m not nearly ready for the baby making ~ i can’t seem to get away from posting more brilliant designs that are popping up for new parents. Remember Ooba (old post here)? Well they took that gorgeous bassinet further, and made it more functional … Basically the bassinet with the addition of a table top and feet for the toy bin. (not that the diagram wasn’t incredibly clear already).
Just like the SkipHop Products - i’m seeing this as the kind of functional that could work well for someone in need of a table/storage bin - who know kids were coming soon… OR the perfect gift for your designy savvy kids if you are parents really trying to find twisted ways to put pressure on them to have kids of their own. I guess i’m just trying to say, while most normal products may not be perfect for new parents… i’m impressed these products for new parents can work so well (while looking so good) for the rest of us too. [and yes i know i’m slow on this one - cleaning out the press releases in the inbox - and got stuck staring at this one for a while, it was just that cool it still deserved a post] Ooba Bassinet Set
Lucy Feagins, Melbourne contributor, sends us more design news from down under. State of Design is a new State-government funded design festival (yes, another one!) kind of trying to bill Melbourne as the ‘design’ capital (although everyone kind of knows that’s a title traditionally held by Sydney).
There was lots going on around town as part of the festival and unfortunately I didn’t get along to see a lot of it, but one exhibition I did see was ‘Freestyle – New Australian Design for Living’ at the Melbourne Museum. The exhibition was beautifully and thoughtfully laid out, though it seemed like more of a retrospective of established Aussie designers that a true collection of ‘new’ Australian design. Anyway, it was fantastic to be reminded of so many successful and inspiring Australian designers, and also to see such variety within the one show – from furniture to fashion to ceramics and jewellery. Among those designers featured were fashion designers Akira Isogawa and Easton Pearson, bag designer/manufacturer’s Crumpler Bag, Jewelery and homewares designers Dinosaur Designs and many others. See some of my top picks below…
Over at Barney’s Co-op in SOHO this weekend came across Jessica Kagan Cushman’s Scrimshaw bangles… and was torn… thinking she was still doing them on pre-ban ivory. They are beautiful pieces of fossilized mammoth ivory with engravings of quotes and phrases from movies, literature, and more. Fascinating part? “As the daughter of renowned furniture designer Vladimir Kagan and needlework queen Erica Wilson, design runs in her veins. Having learned scrimshaw from her father, who took up the craft in the 1960’s in Nantucket, Jessica has taken the artform to a new (and slightly un-orthodox) level - creating scrimshawed antique ivory bracelets that lie somewhere between a tattoo and a bumper sticker.”
Read the comments - Jessica left us a really nice note explaining the humane nature of these bracelets, further explaining how fossilized mammoth ivory is obtained as well letting us in on the secret that she will have resin bangles coming soon exclusively to her website!
Ms. Dewey is somewhere between terribly annoying - and gorgeously amusing. The quality of her search engine and her living in your monitor pacing, doing her world take over evil laugh, tapping and harassing you to type things, and telling you she knew you’d type that… is bizarre to say the least. But worth checking out. But i must admit - i kept watching her pace and chat with me, and then i got a little sad when she started looping her vid sequences… it’s all so very sci-fi channel sleek and trippy.
These cards are so much fun i spent two days trying just to make an image for this post, and loved so many i ended up giving up, and Shade Elaine stepped up and collaged some of our favorites for you. (More of my favorites below.) Welcome to the best greetings card line i’ve seen yet ~ O Plus D ~ via the lovely ladies of the Fabulist.
NOTCOT’s favorite designer couple, Anna and Tim Harrington of Deadly Squire, present Converter. This new show opens this week at my favorite Williamsburg Gallery ~ The Riviera. Known for their beautiful patterns (you may remember their skateboard, as seen in NOTed) ~ “Textiles/Patterns reside in an uncrowded corner of the design world having the unusual property of being simultaneously raw material and finished work. The pattern designer’s work is completed when their design is applied to paper, fabric, etc. but it’s true purpose is not served until those patterned materials are made into something by another artist.” So to put their patterns to good use (better use? a different use?) they have enlisted 20 artists to apply them to everything from furniture and apparel to jewelry, sculpture, animals and more. Can’t wait to see what they come up ~ if you make it over there, send pics!
Lamy’s were always my first love when it came to nice pens, i had a few 2 and 3 in ones in those nice black metal barrels, always LOVED the weight of them. Take a look at the new Lamy Pickup Pro, designed by Wolfgang Fabian. It’s literally a pen in a pen, but not in the twist to switch style, more like there’s a mini highlighter you can unlock by pressing the yellow button, and then it pops out the top. (Nice for two handed, write+highlight). It is described as naturally anodized aluminum barrel with massive, spring-mounted metal clip, turning mechanism and movable telescopic point.