Etsy Schmetsy: matryoshka

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It’s no mystery why Russian nesting dolls are as popular as they are. Check out some of these great finds from etsy:

Row 1:
Block-printed magnets by Amanda Kindregan; Hand-printed cotton handkerchief set by HippieJo

Row2:
Photographic print by Angie Muldowney; Hand-sewn journal by art kitten

Row 3:
Organic T-shirt by maryink; Acrylic brooch by A Skulk of Foxes

Row 4:
Set of hand-carved rubber stamps by Cupcake Tree Designs; Adorable baby shower invites with coordinating thank you notes by inky livie

Row 5:
Set of 5 unpainted dolls from sherla; wrapping paper from enna

Louise Body Wallprint

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Just a very quick post about something that I came across yesterday. There are some fantastic wallpaper designers out there and Louise Body Wallprint is one that I really like. She creates dreamy wallpapers, fabrics and handpainted cushions. I’m partial to the lace designs (of course), but I kind of love them all.

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Keep Calm and . . . full circle

Y’all know about this poster, right?

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The classic sfgirlbybay edition as seen in the final issue of
Domino magazine, RIP.

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Maira Kalman’s version from
The Principles of Uncertainty. She’s wrong about the WWII thing, sort of (more on that later).

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Threadless typetee
‘s clever reversal (note inverted crown); the 1937 original poster hung in an old bomb shelter, apparently.

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Optimistic crafty homage by Matt Jones, available on 20×200; snarky, but true parody by Osborne Villas from flickr.

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Printable 2009 calendars by etsy seller littlebrownpen, available in a version for Women and one for Men.

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Rubber stamps
from Rubber Soul; lip balm from etsy seller leastlikely2breed (these should totally say keep calm and carry balm instead…)

But OK, what about these? Yikes!

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These are very very real though I think they are not intended to be quite so creepy as they come across. via BoingBoing via David Byrne!

I trace and analyze this phenomenon as best I can after the jump.

Continue reading Keep Calm and . . . full circle

pomme-pomme prettiness

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I wanted to have a supermodel photo shoot with the two new Blythe dresses that I just received from pomme-pomme, but I sadly haven’t had the daylight to do it. Unfortunately, these photos don’t do them justice, but I just had to share as soon as I could. They are so crazy adorable and well-made, I absolutely wish they came in my size.

How does your garden grow?

Do you love gardening as much as I do, but live in a city, therefore, do not have a backyard? Well, let’s solve that problem by getting tips by local gardening expert Flora Grubb! Flora will be speaking/offering tips for gardening in small, urban dwellings at the Design Within Reach on Fillmore Street in San Francisco (Thursday, April 16th, from 6-8pm).

To rsvp, and get more information about this event, visit the Design Within Reach site.

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the adhesive drawer

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I love tape. Owen and I have so much tape that it has its own drawer in our apartment. In fact, “the adhesive drawer”  was even mentioned during our wedding ceremony (in the interest of full disclosure, I have to admit that the adhesive drawer houses glues and pastes in addition to tape).

When I was in Japan, I bought some MT Masking Tape. It is beautiful tape made of Washi, and it comes in a ton of really great colors. I wanted to buy some more. After doing some tape research the other day, I learned that MT is now available in 32 new patterns. Unfortunately, you cannot place international orders on the MT site. This sent me into a fit of online searching which was, in the end, fruitful.

I was able to purchase a few of the patterned tapes from Ginko Papers. My tape arrived today, and I am thrilled with it.

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But, Ginko Papers only sells a few of the MT tape patterns. And, I wanted more of the solid tape. So, I turned to etsy, where I found not only more of the MT tapes, but some other fantastic tapes as well. I am loving some of the lace tapes, too, but I thought I’d dedicate this post to more traditional and printed tapes.

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Row 1: washimatta My set of 20 is en route from Japan!
Row 2: hebeaccessories, RetroNaNa
Row 3: nothingelegant, lovepetitzakkajapan
Row 4: cottonblue, RetroNaNa

Here are a few more useful, tape related sites:
UK based blog dedicated to tape: I Love Sticky Tape
Really nice patterned taps: Tape Swell
updated: a large selection of MT masking tape is also available at Happy Tape

Rehabilitated Dishware

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Like the Crackery Crockery from Ornamented Life that I shared with you a while back, Sarah Cihat’s Rehabilitated Dishware brings new spirit and beauty to tableware that had been condemned to a life of rejection. Buying dishes from second-hand stores and retailers’ seconds piles, Cihat re-glazes and modernizes them with a new color and new design. The results are delightful, graphic and playful, all the while making you feel good about giving a loving new home to (what would have been) a stray. Cihat originally started this study of sustainability and renewal as a project for her thesis, and now sells the unique pieces in select boutiques and online.

b’ART

Part of my commute every day is on Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART). I’m lucky in that I’m commuting from south of downtown San Francisco to Millbrae: against the tide; I never have a problem getting a bench to myself. Sometime around January, something caught my eye on the platform. It was a great big bird.

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Wow. There are a lot of things that these say to me. After the jump.

These are the works of Berkeley artist  Mick Wiggins. If you’d like to read his statement or other outsisde context before my observations, feel free. I only came upon this context after writing this.

Continue reading b’ART

two-dee into three-dee

I randomly came across Peter Callesen while searching for a paper artist who plays with dimension and gives depth to something that was originally flat (like Cornelia Odonovan and Jason Jagel, but I’ll get back to that in a minute). Now I am obsessed. He has too many incredible works to share that I don’t know how to pare them down to one post. Using only cut white paper and glue (and sometimes pencil or paint for color), Callesen creates three-dimensional sculptures that truly boggle my mind.

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So, back to the original inspiration for this post. Jason Jagel and Cornelia Odonovan do amazing work layering planes of two-dimensional pieces to create three-dimensional environments.

Noah was kind enough to introduce us to the work of Jason Jagel. I was immediately drawn to his sculptural work. To see more, visit his website.

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Katja, in turn, shared with us the paper art of one of her favorite artists, Cornelia Odonovan. To see more, visit her website.

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TypograFriday: Splendid Slabs

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Owen and I are big fans of slab serifs (and clarendons, for those who make the distinction) — they feel simultaneously classic and contemporary, and often feel fresher than a sans serif. Here are a few of our favorites; many of these typefaces are also available at MyFonts which we think is a great site.

Row 1:
Zapata
— An absurdly extended clarendon that is fun without looking too goofy.

Rosewood — I remember seeing Rosewood Fill (without the circusy outline) for the first time in 1998 and thinking it was awesome. Sadly, since then it has been used to death and we kind of avoid it.

Row 2:
Archer
— Archer is at the top of our fonts-we-want list. You can see it put to great use all over Martha Stewart’s brand. (It was initially commisioned of H&FJ for Martha Stewart Homes)

Clarendon Text — We bought this cut of Clarendon — which has been regularized a bit to make it work for text — for a book we designed about the Center for Land Use Interpretation‘s residency in Houston. The lovely brown highway signs that mark national parks are set in Clarendon (or were until recently) and it has a good “Texas look,” so it seemed a perfect fit.

Row 3:
Freight Micro — Previously on top of our fonts-we-want list; now on top of the fonts-we’ve-bought list. The angles on the italics are beautiful and unexpected — and basically just pretty frickin’ awesome.

Apex Serif — The slab serif of the Apex family (Apex Sans, Apex Serif and Apex New), it’s one of our old favorites. Until recently, we felt it was a secret from the world — I guess the party’s over now that Best Buy has started using Apex New on their signage, store circulars and website.

Row 4:
Girard Slab — The latest slab to draw our attention, it has lots of great ligatures and looks like it would be a lot of fun to work with.

The Serif — Luc de Groot’s superfamily Thesis outdoes all contenders in sheer volume; there’s the original sans, serif and mix, each in eight weights, small caps and italics. Since 2000 he’s contiuned with it, adding some new weights and a mono-spaced version. Quantity aside, The Serif is quite beautiful, and stays so from light to black.

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