Tuesday, November 30, 2010

November Mix Tape

We had snow for the first time today and it made me want to get warm and listen to understated songs. However, there haven't been all that many new musical nuggets to caress my ears this month so instead I've put together a little mix for these dark nights and cold days. Some of it's new, and some not. Some of it's brimming with sentiment and nostalgia, and some not. Here's the track list...

01 - Band of Horses - Is There a Ghost
02 - Bear in Heaven - Fake Out (Glass Ghost Remix)
03 - The Smiths - Please Please Please Let Me Get What I Want
04 - The Leisure Society - A Short Weekend Begins with Longing
05 - Ellie Goulding - Your Song
06 - Bombay Bicycle Clube - Fairytale Lullaby
07 - Joanna Newsom - Does Not Suffice
08 - The Maccabees - No Kind Words
09 - Four Tet - No More Mosquitoes
10 - Blur - Beetlebum
11 - Jimi Hendrix - Castles Made of Sand
12 - Sublime - Marley Medley
13 - Frank Turner - St. Christopher is Coming Home
14 - The Tallest Man on Earth - Like the Wheel
15 - Jesse Payne - Yards of Paint
16 - Modest Mouse - The Good Times Are Killing Me
17 - Just Me - Match.com advert

I know, I know, some of them are clich├ęd and over played but they're still lovely. And if we didn't live in the future where music only exists as ones and zeros; I'd make a CD and this would probably be the front cover...

Monday, November 29, 2010

Jonas Damon makes nice things...

I need a multi tool for work and although I know I'll end up with some sort of all singing all folding contraption, I found this tool kit (admittedly not the same thing) designed by Jonas Damon through Apartment Therapy. It's wooden and lovely and I want one.

Tool Set

The shop selling his stuff is Areaware and they also have his amazing LED alarm clocks; four little, individually positional, cubes of joy. However, at $95 and $100 respectively, neither of them will be finding their way into my home any time soon... Nevertheless, definitely check out Jonas' blog and Areaware too if you're feeling flush.

Numbers LED Clock

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Lucienne Day was/is awesome...

I was watching Antiques Roadshow the other day (mock all you like, but trying to guess the valuation is fun) and a lady had brought in a set of incredible plates. They turned out to be from Lucienne Day, one of Britons most distinguished post war textile designers who, less infamously, also dabbled in ceramic design.

Calyx Chair

My complete ignorance on this subject has since been replaced with a borderline obsession as she has designed some ridiculously beautiful patterns which have since been applied to furniture, cushions, canvas', shoes etc etc. After a bit of a Google trawl, I think my favourite is this chair... And here is the lady herself.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Get an Autum this Autumn...

Apart from lending themselves very well to (hilarious) word play, Autum make carefully designed, limited edition...stuff. They only have three things in their store...two of which are made of leather so although they do look awesome, the vegetarian in me can't possibly condone them...but the final is a glorious looking bicycle called the Minion.


My buddies think there is a Nazi-ish undertone to the design...I disagree. I think it looks like a sleek lined, pedal powered cafe racer. They're only making 7 and unfortunately at about £1000 none of them will end up with me. Sad times...

It's only how many days until Christmas??

Unbelievably, although I'm sure I only just switched from shorts to jeans, Christmas is now only 35 tiny, insignificant days away. Quite how it has snuck up on me is a mystery, especially as I am normally such an unashamed lover of anything prematurely festive. As far as I'm concerned, as soon as we get to the '-ember' months it's time to get excited!

Anyway, as such, online Christmas shopping is officially in full swing which means visiting shops that I can't normally justify buying things from. Win! One such place is Sydney based Upon A Fold, a world of delightful paper artistry run by Justine and Matt who source paper goods from all over the world as well as creating their own. Visit for beautiful jewellery, pretty stationery, paper planes and perfectly engineered pop-ups, this is a magical journey into the world of paper.

Here are some of their newest and most Christmasy finds...

Pop up Card (Red)

Gift Wrapping Book

I'm back, maybe...

In March my New Zealand work visa expired, it was no coincidence that this was also around the time of my last post. It turns out to be true what they say; unemployment really does breed lethargy (I'm not sure if they do say that, but it sure is true). Sans job I had more time for in depth internet nibbling and the search for tasty art/design/music nuggets but instead I lost interest in it and for this poor unloved blog...

Since then I've come home from NZ, got a new job and moved to Chester; so here we are again, meandering through the interweb stumbling and falling over its delights. Will my rekindled enthusiasm last? Who knows? Will anyone read this and therefore care? Almost certainly no. But nevertheless; hello again.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

(Not) My Father's Garden...

This video from Mirko Faienza is shot on a Panasonic HPX500 camera with a Fujion 17x7.6 HD lens. Called 'My Father's Garden' it's a delight to watch with lovely little focus pulls and close ups. Amazing that such characterful little critters can be so easily found, and with a not so serious soundtrack in a very BBC wildlife kind of a way, it really works. Not as sure about the dramatic drum towards the end or the sparkly opening credits but still well worth a watch.

(via the awesomer)

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Songs for March...

My friend and I went to Sydney recently for a weekend of sweating and music...but mainly sweating, and there was a guy staying at the same hostel as us with a guitar and an incredible voice. How he is not famous I just don't know. Anyway he played two songs in particular that gave me that funny feeling inside that certain songs do, by bands that I should really know more about. Here they are:

Dispatch - Flying Horses (buy it)

In other not very new news, MGMT and Gorrilaz both have new albums out or on the horizon. MGMT's is due out 12/04 'citing!

If there is anyone who cares I'm sorry for the lack of 'Songs for February' post. My bad. I'm hoping to make up for it here. If you are feeling sad about this, here is the new and optimistic track from the Born Ruffians.

I forgot about you for a while there...

OK so it's the middle of March and all the evidence seems to suggest that I haven't posted since January 31st. Outrageous. I can't even really use the excuse of being too busy...I mean I have been quite busy, but too busy would be stretch.

I'll just get on with it then...

Something I have been thinking about a lot recently is the prospect of growing up and becoming, well, a grown up. Having a real job and getting a house and all that. I am hoping that when I eventually get a place it will be filled with 'functional art' like that from 100Percent's Etsy shop. They have some rad little nik-naks that would look great in my imaginary house. I particularly love the vintage alarm clock...I can't stand those bright digital ones...they're too damn bright! It's like trying to sleep with the light on. I have taped a little cardboard flap over the numbers on mine; it has a handle and everything for easy access to the time.

(through please sir)

This imaginary house of mine, by the way, will look pretty much exactly like this converted old carpenter's shop in Copenhagen. It's furnished by a company called Indenfor & Udenfor who sell international antiques to contemporary homes.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

The Zoomable Map...

Quick post today. Here is a lovely and simple bit of design that makes a frustrating but useful object frustrating no more. Map2 removes the need to unfold all the unnecessary parts of a giant, awkward, blowing in the wind, tearing down the folds map. Granted it's not quite as flexible as zooming in on an i-phone...or in fact at all useful unless you need to find your way around London...but ingenious nonetheless.

Head over to the website to check out a video of the map in action, see more photos and buy a London copy.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Songs for January...

What with it being a new decade and everything I should really be posting cutting edge music that will revolutionise the industry in the coming months. Alas, I do not have any. Instead then here are 3 songs that I have played more than any other in the last week or so.

Bon Iver - Skinny Love (buy it)
The massed voice of Justin Vernon over such a simple little melody comes together to make something that is, in the words of my good friend, a wonder. It's made a lot of people's
Top Songs of 2009 lists, and for good reason.

Julie Doiron - When Brakes Get Wet (buy it)
I downloaded this little song as part of a big batch in December and at the time didn't give it the credit it deserved. I have now. It's only 1:47 long but is full to the brim with friendship and sentiment.

Yeasayer - Ambling Amp (buy it)
No one can ever have enough synthed up electro. Can they? No they can't. This dose even has a spectacularly unusual video, watch it
here. (NB: nudity aplenty in the clip - NSFW)

I'm sure it won't be long before I have over listened to them and they are ruined for me forever...but for now...back on repeat!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Watch, Listen, Tell...again...

A few months ago I posted about the amazing You tube channel Watch Listen Tell and last month they posted their first new video for a while from a band called Golden Silvers. Shot as beautifully as ever outside RAK studios London, the song is called Magic Touch. Somehow it's got an almost Beach Boys feel to it, and I love the white decorators van driving past half way through. It almost makes me miss the UK. Almost...

Moleskine Daily...

To be able to dream up and put down a drawing a day as good as these by Maykel Nune is quite a feat...I think so anyway. His project is to fill a double page in his Moleskine with a new drawing everyday, and to boot each one is stylised perfectly around the background behind the journal. How delightful. Check out his Flickr page for more of the stream.

(through pikaland)

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Home grown...

It's always nice to be able to post something New Zealand-y on here. It doesn't happen often, and certainly not often enough...although maybe that's partly my fault for not seeking out lovely kiwi ideas regularly. I should; I will.

Anyway, 'Yes Yes No' are, according to their website, an "interactive collective that specializes in the creation of engaging, magical installations that combine creativity, artistic vision and cutting edge R&D". Succinctly put I think. One of their most recent projects was an installation called Night Lights where they used body interaction on stages, hand interaction above a light table, and phone interaction with the tracking of waving phones to turn the Auckland Ferry building into an interactive playground. The video is kind of heart warming. Strange how the simplest of things, like making shadow puppets on a wall, can make so many people so happy.

(through the awesomer)

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Oh yeah and its 2010...

January of a new decade has landed solidly on our laps and I rudely posted without wishing a very happy, hopeful and successful New Years to anyone that happens to stumble across these ramblings. The best of luck to you all...and all that...

Oh, the other thing I forgot to do was mention that the new banner font comes from designer and illustrator Grant Coghill who gave away some of his old fonts for free in the middle of December. Very Kind. The one proudly adorning the top of this blog is called cooked meat. Check the rest of them out on his website.

Book works...

I recently tried to make something for my friend by cutting out letters from the front covers of books and arranging them in a pattern to make a word. It turns out book covers are thick and tough and it ended up looking like it had been made by a five year old with his eyes closed...we can't even get it to stay on the wall its so heavy. Fail.

Anyway, a man named Robert The has a series of 'Book Works' and he's cut through the spines, covers and several hundred pages as if they were butter and in comparison has ended up with some amazingly detailed and characterful things. My favourites are the animals, they look like they could easily scuttle off the books that bore them.

(through design milk)