Chuck and Ray

When you look at this image doesn't it make you wonder what Charles and Ray would say? I bet that the direction to the design team on this was pretty clear and easy to follow.

ready for design #3

If ever there was a product in need of some design love this is it! The configuration is interesting enough and it certainly looks rugged as can be but I think that it could stand to use a little of the torture device aesthetic.


Introduced this year by alessi, the pasta pot by Alain Ducasse claims to be a rediscovery an ancient cooking method used by olive pickers. Ducasse has brought to light a unique pot which produces a new and interesting flavor (i.e. the starches are not discarded with the cooking water but are totally absorbed by the pasta, and the same holds true for the ingredients of the sauce). First you put the dry pasta in the ½Pasta Pot ½, sauting lightly if you wish; then the various ingredients of whichever sauce you wish to make; then last comes water or broth, all at once or gradually, cooking everything together with the specially designed cover, stirring occasionally. in just a little more time than normally required to boil the pasta according to the classic method, your pasta with sauce is done and served directly at the table on the included trivet. a booklet containing a number of recipes developed by Ducasse himself is included. I am looking forward to trying this...some day



This technique seems like it would be the splinter-maker but it looks cool. I think that it makes more sense for larger utensils than it does for cutlery. Also, I think that I have heard that using bamboo in this catagory is not really all that responsible as it dries out and separates when washed thus limiting the number of uses. I do like the way they look like tongue depressors.


I am not sure what the surface treatment is on this but the configuration and scale look really good. The form is a little bit like a poor mans russell wright but it really needs some more intentional detailing because it looks a little bit homemade at this point.

Holiday gift idea #16

In case you forgot to buy for anyone that likes robots check these out. There are a bunch that have yet to be sold and although they are about $1000 a piece, they are also one of a kind works of art. I like this one. Scott, this seems like the kind of thing for which your father would be well-equipped and well-stocked.



I think that I mentioned Q tonic a few weeks ago after reading about it in Esquire. It was not easy to find but my case arrived right before the holidays. The bottle is awesome and the presentation is great but the flavor is a little too dry. The bubbles are nice and fine like champagne but I think that I actually like the flavor of Schwepps better.

Thanks Don

Don really went way over the top with his gift of the Nuvi. (I am not sure that this is a photo of the right model but you get the idea.) Maybe he is sick of me asking for directions to his house? Maybe he is tired of having us call from the road because we are lost? Either way I am looking forward to firing this up. From what he says all I have to do is key in an address and this thing will talk me in...I can not wait to try it out. Thanks Don.

Great gifts

Mike and Kristina sent me this salt and pepper shaker set for Christmas. The rubberized black and polished chrome look great together and the form is even better in person. I have never owned a salt and pepper shaker so this is a first...I am not sure if I will leave them on the stove or on the kitchen table.


holiday gift idea #15

Concrete jewelry. Karen Konzuk's concrete line amazingly combines concrete and stainless steel. I think that there are cuff links and pendants in the line as well. I saw them here: http://2modern.blogs.com/

ready for design #2

Clearly this could be way more user friendly.
As Kris just asked how do you clean the board without cleaning the drawer? Good question.

car search 4.0

It looks like the beetle is going to force me to get a new car. I can not say that I am excited about anything that is out there right now. Nothing really meets my space/mileage criteria and I refuse to get a vehicle that sucks gas. I hate to sound like Scott but I am starting to believe there is collusion between the oil companies and the car manufacturers. I am sure that everyone has seen that while automobile manufacturers profits have leveled the oil companies are having a record year. It turns out they usually run in this sort of pattern. You know when we will see the car companies really switch to another energy source? When the oil companies figure out how they can charge $50 a fill up for whatever new energy source they come up with. Sure, I care about the planet and I am happy to minimize my carbon footprint by getting a hybrid but what I really care about it is not getting screwed by a gaggle of greedy bastards that think no one is paying attention. So, it looks like I am going to get in line for an Altima Hybrid. I know it is not the best of the hybrids and I am sorry, but I just can't drive a prius. To me the prius that looks about as good as the Greenbay Packers Cheese hats. I just wish I could afford a Tesla.

ready for design #1

Why aren't there more biodiesel lawn mowers and why do the ones that are out there look like crap? People might not be ready to use biodiesel to get to work but for mowings lawns or throwing snow off the driveway I can not imagine anyone would care. I could see a chainsaw, hedgetrimmer and even a mini-bobcat in the line too. The Toro image attached is a professional fairway model, but still it could seriously use some industrial design.


holiday gift idea #14

These are really fun and easy to do. PhotoStamps.com

christmas tree hunting

Here are the boys looking for the perfect christmas tree at a local farm. Ian brought his croquet mallet to chop down the tree and he also used it to bust through the ice.



Here are the boys playing with their best friends in the "storm of the century" as Karl would say.


Some of the Szymanski's

Luke and Tony came to the house with their families this weekend to see the Bills thrash the Dolphins, talk, and have some of Pop's world famous soup called "Fatah". I am not sure of the spelling.

Gift card tree

I just made one of these for all of my favorite people at Ideavillage. Thirty small donomination gift cards attached to a small vase with clips, wires and low density floral arrangment foam. It was not cheap but I hope that people there will enjoy picking from the assortment of cards from my favorite stores.


holiday gift idea #13

Wayne sent one of these to the studio a year or so ago to use as reference on a project. Most of Hannspree's recent stuff is pretty lame but I think that this holds up fairly well. Although the 10" display is skimpy. The pearl finish is especially distinct.



According to Treehugger this is in the process of being destroyed. From Erickson's site:

The site for the house was a rock cliff dropping forty feet from the arrival level down a sheer cliff to a rock bench over the sea. The solution to this difficult site was the creation of a multi-storey house descending the slope in levels.

The formal idea of the piling up of hovering beams was the basis of the composition. These enclose the major living areas, which step down the embankment for four storeys from the carport to the bluff over the sea below. Each area opens onto a roof terrace over the living quarters below, so that there is maximum access to sunlight and view. Because of the ruggedness of the site, the outside living areas are confined almost entirely to the roof areas of the house itself.

A texture difference is achieved between the walls and box beams by using flat siding on the beams and a deep board and batten on the walls. The house is treated with a simple oil finish and the only other materials used in conjunction with the wood are used brick and a Welsh quarry tile.

Kind of a bummer but all of the debate over whether the owner can destroy it seems misplaced...I mean, he does own it right?


Maybe Dyson is having an affect on other categories but it seems like more and more forms are moving from solitary fluid integrated volumes to a series of connected smaller volumes. The result is a more techinical/mechanical look that can be a little SciFi. This handheld seems to pull it off but the material and texture changes are a little too much.


holiday gift idea #12

If you have a lot of money to spend and a short commute to work.

Kone Vacuum

I just saw an ad for the Kone vac by Dirt Devil. I hope that they did not pay Rashid too much for this design. Not only is it a terrible vacuum and awkward to hold but the claim that it is at home in the home is absurd. A shiny plastic cone sitting in the corner of the room? Who wants that beside Karim? I think that the hypothesis is great but the execution is feable. I think that it reduces the legitimacy of the entire profession when crap like this becomes so high profile. Dirt Devil should know better. Last time I heard they have some pretty talented in house designers.