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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)


Grill Basting Brush and Beaker by Eva Solo

The official beginning of summer is almost upon us, and the summer means backyard grilling. And, if you do any backyard grilling, you need a basting brush. This brush and beaker by Eva Solo is a smart little set to aid you in your outdoor cooking, as the silicone brush rests upon the side of the beaker to keep things tidy. It’d be a handsome addition to your other grilling tools.

Purchase Information:

Price: $39.00
Available from: Emmo Home

HB6B / Karin Matz

Small, well designed apartments that take advantage of cramped quarters will always have a place in my heart, thanks to living in a ~450 square foot studio apartment in my 20s. I remember imagining countless ways to remodel it if I owned instead of rented. That’s why, despite its somewhat rough looking walls, this little apartment by architect Karin Matz in Stockholm has caught my interest. Take a look at the lofted bed sharing a glass wall with the kitchen, with storage underneath, and marvel at the smart way they’ve incorporated necessary living areas all within under 400 square feet (36 sq meters).

More information:

View HB6B / Karin Matz here

OK Dish

Stay sane with a daily reminder that everything is, in fact, going to be okay. Take a deep breath, put on your jewelry/pick up your keys/etc., and head out for the day. Similarly, at the end of your how-the-heck-did-end-up-with-a-12-hour-a-day work schedule, take off your jewelry/put down your keys, and relax. This small dish might just be the one spot where things won’t get lost.

Purchase Information:

Price: $25.00
Available from: Schoolhouse Electric & Supply Co.

August Smart Lock

Remember this smart lock? Through the magic known as bluetooth, the August Smart Lock senses your approach and unlocks your door for you, without you reaching for your phone. Here’s the lowdown: It fits over the interior portion of your current deadbolt, so there’s no need to change out your door hardware, as from the outside you’ll still have the same keyed entry. August’s encrypted locking technology allows you to control when people have access to your home, from family members to cleaning crews, and you can see a complete log of who has come and gone (and the exact times of their arrival/departure) remotely from your phone or computer. Don’t worry about power outages or internet connections, as the August is powered by standard batteries. The second batch of August Smart Locks will be available later this year; reserve yours now.

Purchase Information:

Price: $199.00
Available from: August

Hardwood Step Stool

You won’t like the price of this step stool, but you will understand it once you see that it packs a lot more punch and pizzazz than anything you’d find at a hardware store. Architect-turned-furniture designer Aaron Poritz designed the Hardwood Step Stool with storage in mind. Slide-away storage panels for books- or anything else you’d rather not see on a daily basis- are tucked in between each step, making it a handy storage option and side table as well as a functional step stool. Nicaraguan craftsmen make the Hardwood Step Stools from century old Nancinton trees felled during the destruction of Hurricane Felix.

Purchase Information:

Price: $579.00
Available from: Kaufmann Mercantile

Aluminum Tray by Piet Hein Eek

What’s so great about an Aluminum Tray? Other than the fact it’s from Piet Hein Eek and his fascination of the technical possibilities of aluminum (specifically, when combined with a stamping machine), you can rest easy knowing that it’ll take a beating and still do the job of holding whatever you might need to transport to and from the desk or dining table. Or, if you intend to set it upon a surface merely to corral mail and/or other miscellany, it certainly adds a certain machine aesthetic that you may find as a nice contrast to your other wooden pieces.


Purchase Information:

Price: $120.00
Available from: The Future Perfect

Geo Stands

Sure, you could use these solid brass stands as paperweights or placeholders, but why not have them out all the time as photo holders? It might encourage you to switch out photos more often, as there’s no fumbling about with picture frames. Buy them as a set ($60), or individually ($22 each).

Purchase Information:

Price: $70.00
Available from: Yield Design Co.

Friday Links

  • World Bicycle Relief: mobilizing people through the power of bicycles
  • “The Stratus A1 mobile storage unit is designed for the cloud-enabled knowledge worker…” yet I think I could use one beside my desk at home. Yes/No?
  • Knock: Knock you phone to unlock your computer
  • Brainspace: just launched this week and it looks very promising.
  • HYVE: a modular system over on Kickstarter
  • Christoph Gielen’s aerial photography
  • “The Normandy landings, codenamed Operation Neptune, were the landing operations on 6 June 1944 (termed D-Day) of the Allied invasion of Normandy in Operation Overlord during World War II. The largest seaborne invasion in history, the operation began the invasion of German-occupied western Europe, led to the restoration of the French Republic, and contributed to an Allied victory in the war.” -Wikipedia
  • Lego: Ellen Kooijman’s Female Minifigure set
    That is all for today; learn something new this weekend and then relax, for goodness’ sake.

    Reflect Sideboard, Small

    Perhaps you were fond of the undulating front of the Reflect Sideboard, but you pinned your hopes on a smaller version. Lucky you, those hopes have materialized into the little brother/sister version you see above. Measuring in at 41.3″ wide, this Small Reflect Sideboard will be able to fit into those not-so-large nooks that its bigger sibling simply can’t, and will provide you with storage space and Scandinavian style all in one.

    Purchase Information:

    Price: $2,900.00
    Available from: YLiving

    Kaktus Stool

    Lightweight yet strong, this sturdy aluminum stool can be used indoors or out. Use it as a stool or side table, or, flip it over and it becomes a basket for logs, toys, towels, or whatever else you can think of. Made from 100% recycled aluminum, the Kaktus was inspired by the fibrous skeleton of the Staghorn Cholla cactus. Designed by Enrico Bressan, architect and co-founder of Artecnica.

    Purchase Information:

    Price: $290.00
    Available from: Dwell Store

    Aecraft Peak Laptop Cover

    Here’s a case with a leather cover that integrates a small stand for your laptop. So what? Well, pivoting your screen at an angle helps your wrists be more comfortable and just might improve your posture (sit up straight!). Oh, and, of course, it looks pretty sleek with its “100% imported natural South African Merino wool felt and premium Norwegian vegetable-tanned leather” as well, and has an easy snap-shut closure to keep your device secure.


    Purchase Information:

    Price: $205.00
    Available from: Leibal

    Belle Soiree Pendant Light

    Lovely, aren’t they? Don’t get too attached if you’re on a tight budget, but if you’ve a healthy allotment for pendant lights, then add these blown borosilicate glass lights to your list. Utilizing direct and reflected light, these pendants are wonderfully elegant; they’ll not steal the show, yet will withstand any manner of fads and changes to your home’s color scheme. There’s also a Floor Lamp, Wall Light, and Table Lamp along the same lines.

    Purchase Information:

    Price: $1,080.00
    Available from: YLighting


    You know how frustrating it is to be running along a crowded pathway, dodging pedestrians who have little clue you are running super fast (and looking good while doing so, I might add) and about to overtake them? Yeah, you could shout out ‘On your right!’ or ‘On your left!’ every single time, or you could have this Runbell to pleasantly alert those in front of you. Ding ding! Take a look at the video below, or go to Kickstarter to back the project (5 days left).

    Purchase Information:

    Price: $25.00
    Available from: Kickstarter

    Alex Building System

    What’s the deal with this jumble of junctions and thumb screws? It’s the Alex Building System, and you’re going to have a lot of fun if you like putting things together with your own two hands, no tools needed. Various junctions can be tightened with the thumb screws onto wood sections to create anything your brain can dream up; coffee tables, consoles, side tables, shelving systems, etc. And, man, talk about the clean design- can you believe those joints look as nice as they do? It won’t be cheap no matter what size item you plan to build, but the possibilities are endless, so you may alter it as your needs change, and that makes the system worth every penny.


    Purchase Information:

    Price: $17.50 and up
    Available from: Nine Stories Limited Editions

    Credit Card Multi Tool

    Do you need a Credit Card Multi Tool thingamajig? That answer is probably ‘heck, yeah’ if your bag or pocket is missing a bottle opener, package opener, screwdriver, can opener, ruler, wrench, butterfly screw wrench, auxiliary wrench, and/or a direction indicator, and this little tool has all of those with a key chain hole, of course. You won’t think you need any one of those things until you do, at which point you’ll be mumbling profanities at the fact that you didn’t spend $12 for this thin, stainless steel sheet.

    Purchase Information:

    Price: $12.00
    Available from: Poketo