28 April 2012

Mohawk goes great

Mohawk is North America’s largest private, family-owned manufacturer of fine papers and envelopes, founded back in 1931. To meet the challenge of the ever changing paper business, with revolutions in digital technology transforming the ways people use paper, they recently announced a major reinvention of their business to “thrive in today’s digital world” and introduced a new identity designed by none other than Pentagram.

The identity is the third Pentagram has created for Mohawk in the past 20 years, following logos designed in 1991 and 2002, but I think the 2012 version captures the essence of the company brilliantly and its connection to the changing world of print and paper. It even comes alive with animation and sound. The best part is the logo can be configured into countless colorful patterns. I love when logos do that!

Here's a little about the new mark.

via Mohawk: Mohawk’s new mark is based on the letter M. On one level, it is a monogram for the name Mohawk. It is also constructed to evoke the papermaking process and the printing process, both of which involve the paper around cylinders. The logo also speaks to the basic idea of connection, which is what Mohawk paper is designed for “…whether it’s for a small book of photos featuring your niece and nephew or for a giant global corporation, it’s about communication,” said Michael Bierut, who lead the branding team at Pentagram, and whose firm has been Mohawk’s primary brand agency for over 20 years.

You can read more about the new identity at Mohawk, Pentagram, and Brand New.

Photos: Mohawk and Pentagram

Photo of the week

San Clemente, CA. When I look around, so many of us are looking down at our phones, emailing and texting. You've got to look up once in a while!

27 April 2012

The beauty of busted

Gone are the days of Polaroid photos, but even with a busted Polaroid SX-70, photographer Bill Miller keeps the dream alive with these stunning images! Who knew a broken camera could produce such mesmerizing form and color, they look like landscapes or even layers of the earth.

Photos: Design Bureau

26 April 2012

Floating farmhouse

The transformation of this 200-year-old upstate New York farmhouse is extraordinary! Wide-plank wood floorboards, hand-hewn beams, a wood-and-zinc soaking tub, a 22-foot-tall picture window, a custom built wood-fired oven, concrete kitchen floors, bluestone countertops... hard to believe it when you see the 'before' photo. And there is one right here on Dwell with the rest of story. Bravo to owner and designer Tom Givone. It's a masterpiece! I really, really want his beautiful, open kitchen.

Photos: Dwell

Rock candy rocks

I'm always on the look out for great tshirts... and these sucker tees from England-based Rock Candy are fabulous. Great typography, fun verbiage and cool graphics all in one!

Photos: Looks Like Good Design

Colorful teeth

Is there anything not in a variety of Pantone colors? I think green is my favorite, but wondering if the PMS color is labeled on the back? Found at the Drake Hotel General Store.

Photo: SwissMiss

Coffee for the optimist

Nothing like a little positive outlook with your coffee in the morning! This Optimist mug will definitely get you on track in the morning. And the typeface is perfect. Get it from Pigeon Toe.

Photo: SwissMiss

22 April 2012

Fly like the wind

If I could have run like hell from this past week, I surely would have. It was a crazy week of work and I just couldn't keep up (hence the reason why my posting has been lagging). And had I worn these amazing new knitted Nikes, nobody would have stopped me! The HTM FlyKnit sneaker from Nike (a follow-up to the high-performance FlyKnit Racer unveiled earlier this year) debuted last week at the Milan Salone Internazionale del Mobile and will be worn by Olympic marathoners.

via Fast Co Design: Flyknit Racer required an entirely different shoe-making process (including new machinery and software) to produce a one-piece, lightweight knit upper. For support and structure, Nike wove in supportive cables, which loosen and contract with your foot.

Technically, this is obviously some impressive footwear from Nike and with multiple yarns of varying hues mixed to create a stitched heathered effect and bold color, they are pretty darn good looking too! Read more over at FastCoDesign.

Photos: FastCoDesign

17 April 2012

2012 Tycho tour

To commemorate his upcoming show at the Troubadour (and a full 2012 worth of dates), San Francisco artist/musician Scott Hansen designed this gorgeous poster from photos taken on a recent trip to Baja Mexico. He's both a hugely talented musician as Tycho and artist as ISO50. I've been a big admirer of his work since I can remember and I'm even more excited to know I can immerse myself in his music soon! Check the tour dates here and listen to a few good tracks. And if you want to purchase that amazing poster, do it here! All are hand signed and you get free shipping on all studio edition prints.

Photo: Scott Hansen/Tycho Music

13 April 2012

Offscreen is here

They glow at me, calling my name, all pretty and clean. Begging to be picked up and held, taken home to be used and abused. Magazines! I really don't know what it is, but every month I patiently wait for my subscriptions and the latest newsstand issues. It's my candy store on display. I've said it before too, whoever said print was dead was just plain crazy. Print isn't going anywhere even with all of our mobile devices, apps and eBooks. Hey, remember what they said about Rock 'n' Roll?

So when a new magazine hits the presses, I'm on it with sticky fingers (well, not really. I'm the girl who takes not the magazine in the very front of the display, but the third or fourth untouched, non-wrinkled, non-crinkled one). The latest to arrive is Offscreen, a new, collectible print magazine about the human side of websites and apps. It's an “old-fashioned” magazine in high-quality print, exploring the life and work of people that create websites and apps and the creators wanted to tell the less obvious human stories of creativity, passion and hard work that hide behind every interface.

The design is marvelous and I can bet the writing is just as good! I can't wait to get my hands on the first issue. It's not available on the newsstands (yet), but the easiest way to get the first issue is here online. The second issue is coming soon in mid 2012, so stay tuned. Long live print!

Photos: Swiss Legacy

12 April 2012

Dog days of summer

Brooklyn designer/illustrator Claudia Pearson has created a wonderful line of tea towels and plates for the West Elm Summer 2012 collection. And my favorite items are (of course!) the darling Dachshund plates! Her illustrations are marvelous, the dapper dachshund surfing and swimming for summer. Visit her Etsy site and blog to see her vast array of talent!

Photo: West Elm

A stunning flip

If you've ever wanted to see the wonderful transformation of a 1926 Beverly Grove home, then this is it! Thankfully the buyers, Greg Steinberg and Alexandra Becket run a home renovation specialty service called ModOp Design, and Alexandra is a textile designer and interior stylist and did the renovation with great style. Some of the original pieces in the house were carried on to them, like a wingback chair. Alexandra reupholstered it in one of her fabulous textiles and it steals the show! See all the photos of this marvelous transformation on Apartment Therapy.

Photo: Apartment Therapy

09 April 2012

Spring has sprung

Spring is officially here, so it's time to start a couple of little gardening projects! I'm thinking a few lucky succulents deserve these wonderful handmade pots from Cynthia Vargas and Jennifer Friend of LA-based Putikmade. Made by hand of black mountain clay and porcelain, these cute vessels are a perfect addition to any indoor or outdoor setting! They debut in next month at the Garden Festival at the Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden, but you can get an early start by ordering directing from their Etsy site.

Read more on Putikmade's creative process and beginnings on Dwell.

Photos: Dwell and Putikmade

Scrabble is the word

Wow, who would have thought something like this would come to be... a limited edition of Scrabble for typography enthusiasts! It won't be available for purchase until August, but you can order this one of a kind game for the small price of, oh... $199. Not cheap, but it does come with a beautiful storage case with a drawer, a matching six-panel magnetized gameboard as well as tiles that carry different and exciting fonts—all of which are made of solid walnut. Really, I'll be so busy guessing the fonts on the game pieces, I won't even pay attention to the game at hand!

The set will also include a signed and numbered certificate of authenticity from Winning Solutions, who's behind other classic Hasbro games like Clue and Monopoly. Pre-order today!

Photos: Design Taxi

08 April 2012

Sunday brunch

Easter Sunday it is. I find this country farmhouse kitchen setting absolutely perfect for an Easter Sunday brunch with family and friends! So cozy next to the fire!

Photo: Sunday in Bed

Social media vs. the weather

Living in SoCal doesn't provide me with near enough weather unfortunately. And when I say weather, I mean real weather. A few days of rain a couple of times of year doesn't cut it for this New England bred soul. I rarely have to check the weather forecast, but I do it every morning anyway with the hope that one day something different than sunny and 73 will pop up. I'm fully aware however, that my brain is just fooling with me and I will never see anything more than sun or clouds.

Alas, I'm not alone. The Dutch design agency of CLEVER°FRANKE feels the same. They love complexity and create incredible infographics for a range of clients and subjects. Included in their stunning portfolio are annual weather charts. This year they focused on the relationship between data about the weather provided by the KNMI (Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute) and the sentiments in social media about the weather in The Netherlands. They posed the question: Is the way how people rate the weather on the internet in accordance with the meteorological facts? After analyzing the stats, they produced this gorgeous weather data chart. You must read more here on the details of the chart, but below is a little insight.

via the C°F website: To analyse this, we have used 714,843 messages concerning the weather in this chart. The messages were collected from a variety of websites, social media platforms and internetfora. Overall, the Dutch weather is predominantly rated negatively (58%). Only in April and March people rated the weather mostly positive. Along with the increase in general use of social media in 2011, the amount of messages about the weather rose through-out this year. As the months passed, people rated the weather more negatively, especially in the month December.

You can even check the visualizations at the CLEVER°FRANKE weather chart site and view each of the sentiments vs. the weather. Very cool indeed!

Photos: CLEVER°FRANKE website.

06 April 2012

Present & Correct

It's true, I'm a stationery fanatic. I go bonkers over paper, letterpress, stamps, stickers, labels, note cards, pens, pencils... you get the picture. So you can imagine my delight when I came across Present & Correct on Design*Sponge. Talk about a treasure trove of paper and office objects! Most are inspired by homework, the post office and school. One could literally browse their immense collection for hours and they've got lots of vintage items found on their many sourcing sojourns around Europe and beyond! Check out their Etsy site for even more great things for your office. I'm making a case for that polyhedra jotter right now!

Photo: Present & Correct website

Fetching Fletcher

I'm in awe over the illustration work from Charleston, South Carolina designer Jay Fletcher. Especially this gorgeous poster for the Charleston Harbor Fest, it immediately puts me in the summer spirit! The color, details, composition and typography are just awesome. I look forward to visiting Charleston someday, I hear the food, culture and people are wonderful!

Photos: J Fletcher Design

R is for ranunculas

I've never seen a more beautiful flower (ranunculas by the way) and photographed just as beautifully. The shot is from the Pinterest site (via Sunday in Bed, another fabulous site for inspiration) of Jessica Colaluca, who's Design Seeds features stunning color palettes of everyday things for inspiration! It's a must see blog!

Photo: Jessica Colaluca

All about Augusta

It's that time of year again. The golf world is watching the Masters. While I'm not a huge fan of golf, I do find it relaxing if it's on in the background, it's not so bad. And if Tiger is playing, let's face it, it really is more exciting if he's doing well and in the running. But like everything in life, things change, and even golf courses change. Over the years Augusta has changed the tee positioning, grass, bunkers, reshaped greens and more. How much to they really change however? Bill Yonkers has designed a wonderful infographic to show us just how with details on each major hole. And you can even purchase the poster if you like right here.

Read more about the evolving sport and course on FastCoDesign and get a magnified view of the poster.

Photo: FastCoDesign

05 April 2012

Keyboard wall graphics

This is one cool wall graphic at the offices of Creative Studio 3FS. See more photos of their colorful office here.

Photo: One Extra Pixel

A card worth keeping

Singapore-based Foreign Policy Design Group has some new business cards to go with their new brand and let me tell you, they are spectacular! Tactile and beautiful, and printed on a thick paper... not the type you're going to scribble a note on the back. I'd have to maim you if you did. These business cards are for keeps. The tri-plex cards are designed with a book cloth covering and copper foil stamping. Short of going letterpress, these business cards are a dream! Being the tactile creature I am, I would love to be handed a card like this... or hand it out rather! No Classic Crest Solar White 100# cover here! These are cards were designed and made for people who still appreciate the printing process and the real idea behind business cards. It's your first impression, make it spectacular!

Below is a snippet from Design Work Life on how these gorgeous cards came to fruition...

The new iden­tity set is designed tak­ing ref­er­ence from the writ­ing desk and sta­tionery set of a diplo­mat who writes away let­ters and visas with his foun­tain pen and who keeps his notes in cloth-bound dossiers. A per­son­i­fi­ca­tion of Foreign Policy, he is well-heeled and well-read. As such, the busi­ness cards are inspired by clas­sic book cov­ers that speak of elo­quence and intel­li­gence, reflect­ing the guid­ing prin­ci­ples of our prac­tice. These tri-plex cards are cov­ered with saifu book cloth and are metal­lic cop­per foil-stamped, and made slightly larger and heav­ier than the usual busi­ness cards.

Photos: Design Work Life

04 April 2012

House in the kitchen

Your type geek and cook will love these kitchen towels from House Industries! A set of three fabulous typographic flour sack tea towels are made of 100% cotton and come in black, orange or grey.

Photo: House Industries

Photo of the week

Blue Lagoon, an hour from Reykjavik, Iceland. Having just recently dived into some hot springs of sorts myself (the Boiling River in Yellowstone), I can understand the sheer pleasure of being in some hot water watching the world go by. However for these folks, watching the world go by involved fashion during DesignMarch Iceland. For its fourth year in a row, product designers, architects, artists, and fashionistas opened their studio doors across Reykjavik, Iceland.

To show off their latest line of outerwear, Iceland's very own 66 North (who's clothing easily rivals Northface) decided to use the Blue Lagoon as a backdrop. The geothermal-heated spa and swimming hole located about an hour from downtown Reykjavik, is one of the most visited attractions in Iceland and about as different as a spot as you can get for a catwalk.

But here's another reason I choose this fabulous photo.... for one dude (and I assume local dude), being in a hot spring, with a facial mask on, watching a fashion show is just like any other day. Can you spot him? Hilarious! I like countries where people aren't afraid to be themselves!

I always wanted to visit Iceland and this is one particular event that would be fabulous to include in my itinerary!

Read more about the DesignMarch Iceland event on Dwell and on the DesignMarch Iceland website.

Photo: Dwell website.

Too cool for school

Remember those cool pennants from your youth? Your favorite team emblazoned on your wall. Well, the creative team of Jessica Heltzel, Tim Hoover and Eric R. Mortensen of The Peoples Pennant have elevated the pennant from the confines of sports and designed a limited-edition series of felt pennants that "commemorate the everyday." To "rally around the small things in life" each month, the series includes contributions from the likes of the super cool Heads of State, Richard Perez and Ken Barber of House Industries.

And even better, the pennants are crafted by folks who've helped shape the tradition since the early 1900s, the pennants are hand-crafted, printed and sewn in the U.S.A.

Whatever it is that makes us happy, I'm sure they'll be a pennant for it soon! Get yours here!

Photos: The Peoples Pennant website.
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