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Articles Written by Katie


About Katie: Katie has been a product and textile designer, an art restoration specialist, and an interior designer/merchandiser. Her interests are focused on finding well designed items that improve daily life as well as reading fiction and making stuff. (View Profile)


Extō Extension Cord

What, you think you know all about the normcore trend last year? Well, I challenge you to a duel. I present the Extō Extension Cord, which is my answer to what normcore looks like in the home furnishings/accessories arena. Can you come up with a better example of an unpretentious-on-purpose-yet-still-sort-of-attractive, functional product? Hmm, we’ll see.

Purchase Information:

Price: $70.00
Available from: Forage Modern Workshop

Stasha Organizer

Come on, already. There are simply too many organizers out there for any part of your desktop to remain messy (so says the person with roughly 2′ available out of a 5’x 2.5′ surface). Anthony Keeler was inspired by a cast iron kettle when he thought up this little storage nook/media stand. Lift up the top to stash odds and ends underneath.

Purchase Information:

Price: $30.00
Available from: Umbra

Louise Gray Quilts

Sure, there are some modern/minimal quilts out there- Meg Callahan, Haptic Lab, Mary Keasler and Hopewell Workshop, just to name a few- and now we can add yet another excellent option to the list. The Louise Gray company offers a handful of color blocked quilts that would fit easily into any modern interior. Entirely hand crafted in the US, the quilts could work as a throw or as a wall hanging, and maybe, if we keep our collective fingers crossed, they’ll soon offer larger bed-size options.

Purchase Information:

Price: $395.00 - 410.00
Available from: Louise Gray

Aer Fit Pack

Still searching for a simple, functional backpack that holds your workout gear and your laptop stuff? Take a look at the Aer Fit Pack. It’s designed to keep your sweaty stuff separate from the technology and papers you carry around, all in a compact size and style that’s suitable for both men and women. Shoes have a separate pocket, and there’s a handy quick access top pocket for your smartphone or keys.

Purchase Information:

Price: $84.00
Available from: Kickstarter

Adelman’s You Make It Pendant

Did you know that Lindsey Adelman has a new You Make It Pendant? Yes, indeed, and the whole kit is available at Grand Brass, just like the others. At $57.60, it’s a very affordable option for an interesting, industrial-modern pendant, and all you need is some elbow grease and a fair amount of patience to put it together.

Purchase Information:

Price: $57.60
Available from: Grand Brass Lamp Parts

‘Pretty Things Inside’ Paper Tape

If you’re going to send a package off, you might as well tease the recipient with tape that says something. If ‘pretty things’ isn’t really your style, there’s also the ‘I love it. What is it?’ paper tape, which also does the job of prepping the recipient with positive anticipation. The tape is strong enough for cardboard boxes yet can be teared by hand.

Purchase Information:

Price: $7.05
Available from: Jelanie

Ortho Remote

This blue hockey-puck-looking-thing is a wireless remote for your sound system. How does it work, you ask? Click it once to start playing music, twist it to turn the volume up or down, tap to pause… you get the idea. It was originally designed for Teenage Engineering’s OD-11 Cloud Speaker, yet it follows universal Bluetooth standard for HID so you can use it with any music player on mac OS X, iOS, or Android. A magnetic back gives you the option to stick it on any metal surface, or make use of the non-slip bottom to keep it in place on your table, desk, or countertop.

Purchase Information:

Price: $150.00
Available from: MoMA Store

ObjectBox Wooden Storage Boxes

Just what little odds and ends need to be hidden away? Because chances are that they’ll fit inside the ObjectBoxes from designer Maya Bille. An acrylic sliding lid has the perfect balance of transparency and opacity; you can see the general idea of the box’s contents but not enough to distract you from the beauty of the box. Maybe it could make a nice home for your watches or jewelry? Or desk accessories?

Purchase Information:

Price: $68.00- 88.00
Available from: Dwell Store

Mixed Animals by Huzi Design

Kids. Birthday parties. Blah. What the hell are you going to get for your favorite (or non-favorite) little one this year? How about a slightly strange stuffed animal with magnetic, interchangeable horns, ears, noses, and paws?

Purchase Information:

Price: $59.00
Available from: Huzi Design

Stool 7 from STANDSEVEN

Two legs balanced with a looped sort of kickstand creates this visual trick of a barstool from STANDSEVEN and architect/designer David Adjaye OBE. It’s made from sustainable, recycled metals and, if you need further temptation, there’s an ethical intention thrown in as well. Each stool pays for one Ebola response kit for a family unit in Sierra Leone. You read that right, you can own this marvelous barstool and brag about helping end Ebola. That’s a win/win situation right there. (You can also donate directly to Doctors Without Borders or UNICEF.)

Purchase Information:

Price: £920.00
Available from: STANDSEVEN

United States Blocks

Okay, quick, which states have these abbreviations? MD? IA? MT? NE? VT? It may seem easy, but some people don’t have the same memory as you, and might need these United States Blocks to learn them all. Obviously, kids could learn from these, but I’m talking about some of your co-workers. Fifty wood blocks by House Industries show state images, names, capitals, mottos, birds, flowers, and trees. Everyone could probably stand a refresher, as it doesn’t hurt to keep the mind sharp with civics data, right?

Purchase Information:

Price: $109.99
Available from: AMNH

Wrist Ruler

There’d be no more wondering about exact measurements if you had this ruler around your wrist. Sure, a leather wristband is not for everyone, but for those of us that continually carry around a measuring tape, it could be a smart alternative. Inch and centimeter measurements are engraved on the outer surface with a stud closure, so it’d be easy to take it on and off to get a quick read on smaller dimensions. Notice that I said ‘smaller’ there- it wouldn’t be ideal for measuring a long sofa or a room’s dimensions*, for example.

Purchase Information:

Price: $19.95
Available from: iLoveHandles

Friday Links

  • NYTimes: Tom Sachs Boomboxes (image above- Ben Sklar for The New York Times)
  • If You Want Healthy Cows, Feed Them Magnets
  • WSJ: 5 Tips for Passing a Personal-Finance Stress Test
  • Ha ha. The Kinspiracy
  • For your walls: Elevations
  • Meet Casey Legler – the world’s first female male model
  • LEGO: The women of the US Supreme Court
  • We’ve all felt this way before: 9.5° Chair
  • “A little boy said I look ugly.”
  • one couple’s $22,000, 350-square-feet dream home
    Have a good weekend.

    No Line No Wave Scarf Collection

    If you happen to have a loved one that likes scarves and other strange, artistic things, then the No Line No Wave Scarf Collection should be on your list of birthday/anniversary/special event gift ideas. Glasgow-based studio Briggs & Cole invited twelve Scottish creatives to contribute designs, and the result is an odd-yet-wonderous array of silky squares. Be forewarned, though, as each scarf is produced as a limited edition of ten each, sold only in sets of two.

    Purchase Information:

    Price: $600.00
    Available from: L'ArcoBaleno

    Craft Collection by Normann Copenhagen

    Solid oak and marble make a perfect pair when it comes to these functional kitchen tools by Danish designer Simon Legald. Both materials are durable and fit for everyday use while the rounded edges and curves ensure that each piece is comfortable to handle and hold.

    Purchase Information:

    Price: $95.00 +
    Available from: Normann Copenhagen