Monday, October 17, 2011

featured: so little time co. on etsy

ice-cream brooch

Now that the weather here in Michigan is starting to turn a little cooler (and I've had to break out the winter coat for my morning walk to work), I've begun searching for a new brooch to spice up my otherwise bland gray coat. That's how I stumbled upon So Little Time Co. Their minimalist, yet nostalgic designs evoke a smile while still remaining unique and stylish. 

I think I may have to get one of their lockets too.

wooden locket - lines

Monday, August 1, 2011

tree of life

I was first attracted to this poster for the obvious reason that it is really cool looking. It's simple, and yet it has this almost stamped quality to it. Upon further inspection, however, I found that there is more to it than meets the eye.

Each ring of the tree is actually made of up of little animals, creating hundreds of little prints within a print and seemingly endless discoveries.

Aimed at highlighting "the responsibility we have in letting animal species thrive in their natural environment," Gary, Aaron and Khairul created this poster to speak for animals, who otherwise suffer in silence. It can be found at degree.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

back to basics - zim and zou

source: colossal
Just when I think I've seen the most creative paper replicas, the France-based duo of Zim and Zou go above and beyond by recreating revolutionary technologies that are now outdated.

While the colors are playful, the pieces themselves are stunningly accurate and extremely detailed. Multiple layers of paper help to bring these objects to life by creating dimension and texture while the color scheme gives birth to a unified collection of nostalgia.

From Walkman to floppy disk, the Back to Basics series is created using sustainable paper and even the smallest of scraps. I particularly love the seams on the Nintendo controller and the floppy disk, which really make them seem like they are still formed from two pieces of molded plastic.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

etch-a-sketch ipad cover

I am fairly confident that I won't be purchasing an iPad anytime soon, or maybe even ever, but if I did I would want this case.

New technology meets nostalgia? Yes, please.

You can find it at

devour - christopher jonassen

source: junkculture.
It would be an absolute understatement to say that I think these pieces by Christopher Jonassen are amazing. From the concept to the exicution to the message, I think this is my favorite set of art work I have seen so far this year. When you first look at this set of images, you see distant planets in a dark galaxy, but in reality, you're actually looking at the bottoms of old frying pans.

Ingeniously exploring the ware and tare of a frequently used object, Jonassen comments on the destruction and lifespan of not only frying pans, but also our world. A pan is an object that gets used frequently, but is just as often overlooked. In the same way, our planet is so often seen as something we can use, and yet have little effect on. These photographs are stunning, but what really makes them memorable is their message: we can't keep using the earth for our own devices and expect it to remain brand new.

jaakko mattila

cube 2008
When I see work that is as visually stunning as these pieces by Jaakko Mattila, I can't help but think about what the pieces would look like if I had been the one to create them. In this case, I know that would never have been able to accomplish this, solely based on the fact that I have never been able to completely understand how to incorporate a background into piece. It sounds fairly simple, but in reality I always feel like I end up with some disconnect.

What I find the most appealing about these two pieces in particular is how the 'background' is so thoroughly incorporated into the composition that it becomes essential to the success of the piece, and yet, is still basically just negative space. For example, in Fallout 2009, it's as if the white 'stalagmites' are fading into a black background, while at the same time the black 'stalactites' are hanging over a white background. And in Cube 2008, you do not merely see colorful dots on top of white background, but instead a total environment of colorful dots interacting with the light and each other. In this way, the audience feels as if they are getting a glimpse of a living world, rather than a representation of a fixed environment.
fallout 2009

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

dino lamp: deger cengiz

dino lamp at VOOS
I always looked forward to going back to school, just so I would have an excuse to buy school supplies. Today, this leaves me with an excessive amount of random pencils, highlighters, and at least 10 pairs of scissors.

Anything that helps me become more organized, especially when it comes to all of those office supplies, is welcome at my house. It also doesn't hurt that the design of these LED lamps is modern, yet playful, and extremely multi-purpose.

I also love the idea of using it as a planter. 

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

herrwolke: dreidimensionale konzepte*

more wiederverwertung (recycling) here
One of the most compelling aspects of art and design is that you can find inspiration from a piece regardless of what language you find when you go to the website describing it. In so many ways, the pieces speak for themselves.

Although I do not speak German, the work that can be found at herrwolke's website tells a story of extremely thoughtful design. Their pieces not only focus on the uniqueness that comes from using recycled materials, but also the ways in which users engage with the pieces, and how that modifies each item.

As their website indicates, their concepts are three-dimensional: changing upon user interaction and adapting to the environment.

*three-dimensional concepts

Monday, June 6, 2011

featured: inaluxe on etsy

one million short stories giclee art print
group hug giclee print
As someone who loves small, cozy spaces and not-too-big apartments, I'm not sure if I'll ever have enough wall room to hang all of the prints that I love. I think I may have to schedule print rotations so that they each get a turn on the wall.

These by inaluxe are no different. The colors and the patterns are great, but what I really like about them is how they almost seem random.

There's no repeating reason as to why a certain quotation mark is facing the other direction, no reason that green fades into red in one instance, but blue in another. So while the overall design is balanced, these is still some randomness that keeps your attention.

I also love the linen-like background that gives them texture and even more depth.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

asparagus cake

asparagus cake by sweetapolita
I can't even imagine how much time it took to make each individual aparagus stalk. All I know is that the results look amazing. I strongly encourage you to check out how she did it and to see more pictures at Sweetapolita.
Oh yeah, it looks delicious from the inside too.

Monday, May 30, 2011

patrick kyle

patrick kyle's stew maker
patrick kyle's shield bearer

When I first came across Patrick Kyle's work, I didn't quite know how I felt about them. I thought that the color schemes and compositions were amazing, but I think I was most taken aback with how you can discover something new each time you look at them. They are incredibly detailed and yet it's like you're not quite sure what you're looking at. In many ways, they remind of Hokusai's portaryals of Japanese ghost stories.

hokusai's kohada koheiji
hokusai's sara-yashiki

I can see both the stew maker and the shield bearer having complex back stories just like a traditional Japanese ghost story. For instance, kohada koheiji, which is about a man who is killed by his wife and her lover and as revenge comes to their room every night and peeks over the misquito netting that surrounds their bed. Or sara-yashiki, where a maid is bound and thrown into a well for breaking an expensive set of plates. Pleasant, I know, but extremely interesting.

featured: cynthia vardhan ceramics on etsy

small black and red dish
Ceramics have never really been an interest of mine, but I've realized that's because I've been looking in the wrong places. Growing up, the only ceramics I ever saw were flowery bowls and paisley patterned platters. Recently, however, I've been exploring the more modern side of pottery.

Cynthia Vardhan's ceramics are just that. I love the way that the patterns are almost so perfect that they seem mass produced and yet they have that handmade quality that makes each piece refreshingly unique. In so many ways they seem to blur the line between classic ideals and more modern aesthetics.

black and white bud vase
thundercloud vase

Sunday, May 29, 2011

egg egg holder

My love for this egg holder comes with a story. When I was in high school, I brought two hard boiled eggs to lunch everyday, in a brown paper lunch bag. One day when I sat down at the lunch table, I discovered only one egg and an egg-sized hole at the bottom of the bag. While I wasn't particularly upset about only having one egg in my lunch, I was a little bit concerned about where the egg had gone off to. When I got back to my locker, the egg was smashed into the carpet so thoroughly that you couldn't even tell what it had once been. Unless you were one of my friends, who got endless enjoyment out of it.

egg egg holder at the A + R Store
Anyway, I ended up having to put the eggs in a plastic lunch bag so that any moisture they gave off didn't help them escape the paper bag again. This egg egg holder, which can by found at the A + R Store, definitely would have saved a lot of plastic while looking awesome at the same time.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

this many card

Read more at Design*Sponge

Simple, interactive, and absolutely stunning, the "This Many Card" by W + K Studio lets you color in the appropriate amount of candles for whoever you're sending the card to. This would have come in handy a few months ago when I needed to buy a seventieth birthday card and discovered that sixty is as high as you can find in most stores.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

pocky earrings

pocky earrings by mishibu
While I love the idea of the "geekery" section on etsy, I typcally wouldn't actually wear any of the items that are usually featured there. 

The beauty of these pocky earrings by mishibu, however, is that for many, they are just another pair of dangling earrings. In that way, you don't have to wear them with your favorite Zelda t-shirt, but could actually wear them with a cute summer dress or out to dinner with friends.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

ice cream lamp

ice cream lamp at fredflare
I've had my eye on this giant ice cream lamp for I don't know how many years now. I've seen a few different variations of the idea but unlike some of the overly kitschy ones, I imagine that the standard vanilla gives of a warm light that would help any room feel cozy.

Anyway, I think this would be great in a way that only an over-sized frozen treat could manage.

Monday, May 23, 2011

featured: crafterall on etsy

auke bay
prince of wales island

the great lakes

I recently stumbled upon crafterall's intricate paper crafts on etsy and was instantly smitten. Cut-outs have been particularly popular lately but I love how these pieces take the concept a step further. The added dimension that the layers create, along with the vibrate colors, make these pieces come to life. And unlike many that focus on the grid systems of cities, the organic shapes of these bodies of water seem to almost undulate and grow.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

long exposure flight paths

more at how to be a retronaut

hello, stud

1. riveted diamond posts at anthropologie 2. coal geo earrings by a merry mishap 3. mint tea mini hearts at fredflare 4.colored pencil ear studs by huiyi tan 5. recycled skateboard mini skinny stud earrings by all deck'd out 6. gold vintage seashell studs by diament jewelry

Saturday, May 21, 2011

modern string art

string art on wood by hownowdesign
In the room that I slept in at my grandmother's house, there were two pieces of string art hanging on the wall. One, of a horse, was on black velvet and had a fringed mane that hung free. The other was a mustard and brown mushroom that my mother had made as a child. While I was never particularly drawn to them, I feel that their presence in my life is what is compelling me to like hownowdesign's modern take on string art.

The contrasting colors are striking and the relatively simple shape is complicated by intersecting lines and added dimension. Needless to say, I think this would look great hanging on my wall. 

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


hot chocolate cupcakes by diary of a ladybird
Although I've considered myself to be a baker for many years now, I'll admit that fondant has always scared me. In fact, I've never used it to decorate anything. However, after seeing these beyond adorable cupcakes that look like a cup of hot chocolate, I think I may need to overcome that fear.

Monday, May 16, 2011

featured: tsurubride on etsy

silver elephant purse
gold hedgehog purse
teal alligator purse

While I tend to wear pretty plain clothes most of the time, I feel like accessories are where you should be able to have some fun. That's exactly why tsurubride's shop on etsy is so fantastic. These bags act as great conversation starters and are sure to get you excited about going out.