Archive for the ‘Home Decor’ Category

ABC (Already Been Chewed) Cookie Cutters and Uniqueness

Sunday, January 3rd, 2010

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Hoping that everyone had a great holiday season and a wonderful new year!

I was itching to make this post earlier, but couldn’t give away the gift I used for my family Secret Santa. So, here it is -adorable holiday cookie cutters by WorldwideFred that were found during holiday shopping in NYC. Oddly (or not so oddly), I found them at Henri Bendel, located at 712 5th Avenue.

Initially, I would have never expected such a quirky gift from a prestigious fashion retailer, but after being delighted to have found a unique gift, I made the connection –uniqueness. Retailers are constantly on the search to differentiate themselves and be trend setters. They need to offer clients and customers a reason to come back. Is that reason pure product quality? Affordability? Luxury? Variety? It’s a combination of a many differentiators which range from the convenience of a one-stop-shop or being a specialty store to selling the customer service experience. Regardless the exact strategy at Henri Bendel, I was happily surprised and excited to have found WorldWideFred products there and would certainly go back to find that ‘special’ gift. It seems like a mission accomplished for both retailer and gift-hunter.

the Pho experience

Tuesday, September 15th, 2009

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A lovely connection between tradition, culture, and dining is the Pho tableware set designed by Omid Sadri for the making and serving of Pho. Simply beautiful and functional.

“Phở (fuh) n.Traditional Vietnamese beef noodle soup. Enjoy it for breakfast, lunch or dinner.”

Inspired by the form of a classical Vietnamese lantern, the bowl set here is designed to “simplify and enrich” the experience of the famous Vietnamese dish. The bowl set makes the entire Pho dish easy to carry, then creates a unique experience by revealing the dish layer by layer.

via Yanko Design

Michael Graves + [yellowtail]

Thursday, August 6th, 2009

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Check out the interview with Michael Graves from DesignVerb. Some good insight into the similarities (and differences) between architecture and product/industrial design! Quite interesting. When I was in highschool I wanted to become an architect… and now, I often find myself comparing the two disciplines of architecture and industrial design. According to Mr. Graves, it’s all problem solving and human or environmental interaction, just on different scales.

DV:
What elements and methods in your architectural profession bring value to the product/industrial design discipline?

MG:
I don’t really view them as separate, actually. I’ve always fashioned myself a general practitioner, not as a specialist in any one area. I feel that too often, people become too specialized. Just as a lawyer should be well practiced in case law, an architect should have the same fundamental knowledge of their craft. And if your business evolves into an area of specialty, then that’s great – but it shouldn’t define the extent of your expertise.

DV:
What differences do you find between an architect and a product designer? Strengths, weaknesses.

MG:
Certainly, there’s a difference between the scale and complexity of a building and an artifact. However, we take the design of both equally seriously, and take into consideration their functionality, how people relate to and use them, how they each influence the continuum from the scale of a city to the building to the interior room to the object on the table. When looked at broadly rather than in isolation, buildings and products reflect our core values. If people intuitively understand how to use them and gain joy from their visual appearance, we’ve made a difference.

More insight about the design intent and process of [yellow tail] wine glasses on YouTube.

Read another interview on Architechnophilia

Bakus Table Mat: clever semi-DIY

Sunday, July 5th, 2009

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A simple, elegantly designed stainless steel tray to be filled with your own, used wine corks. Then, replace the corks as necessary when they’re worn out. Such a lovely way of reusing… and extending the experience and memory from which the wine was enjoyed!

Learn more about the Bakus Tray by Ciclus via Wired

Cooktop concepts vs. Real tabletop cooking

Saturday, April 25th, 2009

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Coincidence. I came across some interesting cooktop concepts featured at YankoDesign earlier this week and last night I happen to go to Kaze, a ShabuShabu restaurant in Boston for dinner with a friend. For those who don’t know what ShabuShabu is, you can read more at Wikipedia, which states:

Shabu-shabu is a Japanese variant of hot pot. The dish uses thinly sliced meat and vegetables, and usually served with dipping sauces. It is considered a winter dish but is eaten year-round.

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This communal way of eating is an experience on its own, similar to the better known Fondue experience. The Asian style of eating through a shared experience is one of variety and complementary flavors. Now, my question is, for such an elegant experience with a culture where visuals in food presentation and tableware are emphasized, why isn’t the center piece of this experience just as appealing?

Above concepts certainly bridge that gap and are able to connect the beauty of food with beauty of tabletop cookware. At the restaurant, the electric cooking surface is built into the table, almost hidden. The pot used is purely utilitarian. We spend a good deal of money on other kitchen accessories like blenders and mixers, that guests rarely see. Why can’t the centerpiece of a sharing, fondue-like experience really be emphasized and celebrated?

CraftBoston 2009 highlights

Saturday, April 4th, 2009

Craft Boston featuring 200 Contemporary Craft Artists was held at the World Trade Center, Boston on March 27-29, 2009. A great show of independent crafts people and artists. Below are a few of my favorites.

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InsectLab

(more…)

Alessi’s OrienTales: a whimsical east meets west

Tuesday, March 10th, 2009

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Alessi‘s OrienTales by Stefano Giovannoni.

In collaboration with the National Palace Museum of Taiwan, Giovannoni shows his ability to provide everyday utensils with a playful slant in this new collection that provided for the creation of the corresponding book OrienTales – Eastern stories through Western eyes.

See or buy individual pieces at AllModern.

via Otto

Karl’s ‘Tales’ tableware

Friday, March 6th, 2009

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Tableware by Charles Kalpakia via Core77

a different way of measuring

Thursday, March 5th, 2009

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Who would have thought of measuring in such a way! Clever.

from Fred and Friends

airport shopping and eating utensils

Thursday, February 12th, 2009

During my trip to Hong Kong, I also took a small trip to Taipei and while waiting for my flight back to HK, I spent my remaining Taiwanese dollars at the airport. I couldn’t resist picking up this pair of chopsticks… the chopstick stand doubles as a container of sorts. Clever.

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Back in the States and catching up with some blog reading, this product reminds me of the chopsticks…

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Give It A Rest Utensils by Godefroy de Virieu, set of 6 sold for $24.

via Core77

More from my Hong Kong and Taipei trip to come shortly!

paper-thin table

Monday, December 22nd, 2008

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“Surface Table” by Established & Sons measures 3 meters x 2mm thick (nearly 10 feet long and .08 inches thick)! An interesting way to bring technical materials into a function of everyday. Made of layered carbon fiber from the autosport/aerospace industry and available in walnut veneer or unidirectional natural carbon fiber finish.

via Wired

table grill from Eva Solo

Wednesday, December 17th, 2008

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A great (portable) way for everyone to enjoy the fun of BBQ. Imagine a few of these set up for a party at different tables, surrounded by different types of food. mm…getting hungry thinking about all the possiblities!

by Eva Sola via A+R Store