Sunday, November 28, 2010


The Flying Saucer Bowl Set by Museum of Robots is a modern take on retro design. The piece looks too perfect when assembled to actually utilize as a bowl but the sculpture adds character to the kitchen and pays homage to the world of robots. Available for $300 on, the piece was designed by Richard and Vicki Küng. The pair own both Museum of Robots -- a modern housewares company -- and Küng Design, which specializes in design for the web.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010


The holiday season is coming up and vacations/celebrations equal new big-budget films. With Hollywood doing better this year than last and 3D movies proving wildly successful, it was inevitable that designers would take advantage of the opportunity. Found from a WSJ video, you can now look great while watching a movie (when no one -- absolutely no single person -- is looking at you). Designers are coming out with their own high-end 3D glasses that range from Armani Exchange's $58 aviators (available in December) to Gucci's $225 (better?) aviators (also available in December). Oakley falls somewhere in-between with their $120 rendition of their popular Gascan sunglasses (which normally run $90 for non-polarized). Not featured are Calvin Klein's 3D sunglasses with styles distinctive for both women and men, and Oakley's special edition Tron sunglasses for the upcoming movie premiere on December 17th. Unfortunately, your ticket price will still include a premium for the cheap plastic glasses you don't take but maybe in the future the charge will be separate, thereby adding justification to the splurge.


Owning beautiful means protecting beautiful things but fire is more threatening than it's surface. Pull out the fire extinguisher and it's bound to ruin your goods but the HalGuard Fire Extinguishers, according to, "employ Halotron 1, an electrically non-conductive "clean" extinguishing agent that rapidly turns into a gas, so they're safe for parts and wiring, pose no risk of electric shock, and leave no nasty residue to clean up." Available in red and chrome for $125 - $170, the extinguishers can be delivered hand-wrapped for an additional $5.


The National Museum of the XXI Century Arts by Zaha Hadid is an arts attraction unto itself. Based in Rome, the museum is Italy’s first national public museum of comtemporary arts and features a vast openness walled by concrete and glass. Straight sharp edges and intriguing intersecting lines create anticipation for the art it's built to hold. From Zaha Hadid Architects:

Here we are weaving a dense texture of interior and exterior spaces. It’s an intriguing mixture of permanent, temporary and commercial galleries, irrigating a large urban field with linear display surfaces. It could be a library; there are so many buildings that are not standing next to, but are intertwined and superimposed over one another.

Found on Dezeen -- an online design magazine -- the website also features a mini-assembly of Hadid's previous works. Check it out online until your next visit to Roma.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

A Doll's House for Clementine was designed by TDO Architecture and commissioned by Wallpaper*. The house was designed vertically to accommodate easy interaction at all levels and the home effectively creates a "mini modernist world." When closed, the doll house becomes a gently luminescent lamp which counteracts the space lost for an unusually large toy. While not available for sale, the doll house gives an interesting base concept for the design of future creations.

The tweezers below were created by Dr Jesper Sørensen and Markus Spingler of S&T at the request of Wallpaper* Magazine. The snazzy tool features a "half-carat sapphire embedded in one end" and basically does what tweezers do -- tweeze -- no more, no less.


The Porche Design Studio seems random in their creations but perfect in execution. I once featured their modern lighters but the Veuve Clicquot's Vertical Limit cannot be missed. Designed by Porche Design Studio and found on multiple blogs including Luxist, the cellars are born from a pairing of Veuve Clicquot and the design team. All 15 cellars go for $70,000 but each comes with vintage bottles of celebration.

The TH House exemplifies what I've always said: a house need not be warm and welcoming when a museum is so much more beautiful. In my opinion, this is a different kind of warm, and a different kind of welcoming. Found on Moco Loco, the TH House was created by Baqueratta and features beautiful straight lines and sharp edges that create the simple yet intriguingly complex structure. The outdoor/indoor feature could be a bit scary when home alone after dark but it provides a nice private sanctuary 24/7. If you take a look at the living room, they outfitted the home with Bang & Olufsen sound to complete the perfect picture (and audio).


It seems remote controls are following the lead of smart phones. This DUAL Remote Control by Philips is without release date or price but Philips managed to pull off a full QWERTY keyboard with modern and minimalist style. In concession, my electronic favorite -- Bang & Olufsen -- has a remote that falls second to the Philips DUAL. Found on Moco Loco, I hope more information becomes available soon and the phone reaches stores without incredible delay.


These white nutcrackers from West Elm benefit St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. The small white nutcracker runs $29.00 and the "oversized" is available for $59.00. West Elm will donate $5 and $10, respectively, and the decoration adds some festive, if not monotone, spirit for the upcoming holidays.

Rothko's history is too interesting (and long) to post on here but his pieces will always be classics and they would also look great in any modern home. On October 25th, Luxist reported that a $30 million Rothko piece will help headline a Sotheby's contemporary art sale in New York on November 9th (two days away). For most people, they'll be stuck finding reprints on but the masterpieces are wonderful none-the-less and timeless as they are beautiful.

[caption id="attachment_2143" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Untitled (Black on Gray) by Rothko, 1969"][/caption]


Everyone has heard of Charles and Ray Eames. My first introduction was in high school when I watched Powers of 10 (available at the website with background on Wikipedia). Besides making an absolutely awesome film about space and distance, they were incredible designers that will re-appear on this blog as I come across the timeless classics. Perhaps their most classic piece is the 1956 Eames Lounge Chair which runs more than $3,500 but my most recent favorite is the Eames Aluminum Groups Chairs available at Herman Miller for about $1,749 (depending on the many customization options). Herman Miller is known for their ergonomic, earth-friendly, and innovative designs that aren't for the thrifty but made to be timeless.


With the holidays coming up, it's time to start putting together a wardrobe for the inevitable get-togethers that come along. For those that run with ties, Thom Browne released his modern take on the holiday tie by taking it skinny and square but making a silk creation despite it's knit. Available at Barneys New York for $185.00, the Italian tie doesn't take itself too serious but provides a unique solution to the annual tacky.


The Fulton Screen from Minotti is "separating, screening, mirroring" to provide multiple benefits vis-vis this stylish addition. The mirrors are supported by veneered oak with moka finishing and a base made of black nickel. The tri-panel screen was part of Minotti's 2009 collection and finding your own may be a bit difficult but where there's a will (and money), there's a way.


A quick Google search will quickly find someone nearby to get rid of a mice problem but if it's a single mouse, or if you'd like a DIY solution for reasons of pride, the OneDown Rat Trap is a humane solution that lures the mouse in, tips up, and traps the little guy without much harm (or mess). Designed by Aakash Dewan and found on Yanko Design, the trap is only a concept but a simple and inexpensive concept to realize.


Moncler is known for their poofy coats but they also come out with a variety of high-end ski-wear including these ski socks. If I was travelling to the Swiss Alps, and only if I was going international for my ski (or snowboard) adventure, I would but these $220 chunky knit wool socks at Barneys New York. Available in this single color and washed by hand, these incredibly expensive socks make a statement more about means than any other possible aspect (except, perhaps, the ideal of impracticality).