Year: 2011

Skullcandy 2011 Roc Nation Aviator Headphones

Aviator sunglasses are, hands down, the coolest eyewear ever created, and if you don’t believe me then you need to go rent Top Gun again. Skullcandy’s 2011 Roc Nation Aviator headphones (shown here in Brown Gold) transform the swagger of the jet pilot into some seriously fly audio gear. While the headphone’s performance reviews on the SkullCandy site are mixed, 92% would still recommend them, with owners citing comfort and the “optics inspired” polycarbonate housing. When I tried these on at a recent preview for the Consumer Electronics Show I thought they were stunning to look at and very comfortable (I didn’t have time to test the sound, but I’m no expert in that arena.) Would it be overkill if I wore these along with my old pair of Ray Bans while listening to the Top Gun soundtrack? Maybe, but it also might be the coolest thing ever. $149.99; free shipping in the U.S. with no minimum.

The Sky Scratcher

This cleverly named piece of feline furniture is the creation of Portland, Oregon–based Mike Estes. Even the snobbiest cat on the block (oh, you know who you are Mr. Jingles) will be impressed by the Sky Scratcher, a 37”-high cat scratching post made from more than 125 recycled corrugated cardboard die-cut pads and a FSC-certified bamboo plywood base and center pole. Each cardboard pad is removable from the center post, allowing you to replace and recycle pads that wear out. Estes is currently raising funding at Kickstarter to be able to bring the product to market and only has one week left to meet his goal of $7000. Check out his site and see if his pledge gifts (organic cat nip oil,  screen printed t-shirts) entice you to make a donation. Good luck Mike!

Fruity Fruit Basket

Fruity is a new fruit bowl designed by Charlotte Arvidsson for the Danish design company Normann Copenhagen. Arvidsson, a graduate design student in Sweden, has designed Fruity to arrive flat and be easily assembled and disassembled (it can be freestanding or suspended). Made of plywood, Fruity is inspired by the rings of water that form around a raindrop. Its open structure makes it easier for you to keep an eye on how fresh your produce is — from all angles. $26.00 USD.

Lucy the Crocodile

Available exclusively through Design Within Reach, Lucy the Crocodile is the latest design from David Weeks Studio for the New York City-based design company Areaware. Joining a wooden toy menagerie including Ursa the Bear, Hanno the Gorilla, Simus the Rhino, Hattie the Elephant, and Victor the Wild Boar, Lucy is a 20″ long crocodile with moveable limbs and a jaw that opens and closes. Made with sustainably harvested beech wood, Lucy’s elastic held “muscles”allow her solid wood frame to be positioned in numerous poses. “The crocodile seemed like a good step after the wild boar,” explains Weeks. “I’ve wanted to imbue them with an energy that toys of this genre are usually missing [while] at the same time avoiding painting graphic comic book style faces on them to make it easier to decipher their personality.” Was creating the crocodile more difficult than the others? “Each animal has had its own set of challenges,” says Weeks. “For Lucy, I wanted the mouth to snap close. I imagined the elastic band starting under the chin from the very beginning …

Cardboard Christmas Trees

As I’m heading to London next month, I’m excited to learn that London’s Design Museum has commissioned former Designer in Residence Giles Miller to design a custom six meter tall cardboard Christmas tree, possibly the tallest in the world, to hang in the museum’s public atrium. Going up on December 2nd, the tree is made of 3,600 individually cut and handmade pieces, resulting in a swirl of three fans of card that will cascade in a spiral like form. It will be adorned with woodland animals, including foxes and squirrels designed by illustrator Daniel Heath. Miller has also produced a range of smaller cardboard Christmas trees, shown here, which will be sold exclusively at the Design Museum Shop. The limited edition trees will sell for £25 (small) and £40 (medium).

Spiderpodium

Warning: This post is not for arachnophobics. The Spiderpodium from Breffo is a multifunctional travel accessory that works as both a holster and a stand. Available in a handheld or tablet size, this adjustable little guy features eight notched “legs” that allow it to hang from (or be secured to) a car mirror, car seat back, bicycle frame, desk, or other surface. While it can seem a bit creepy-crawly, it also looks like it’s very practical at keeping your device exactly where you need it to be. I just wouldn’t recommend renting a certain Jeff Daniels film while it’s around. Designed and manufactured in the U.K., Spiderpodium is made of soft rubber and comes in either black or white. $19.99 USD.