All posts filed under: Things for Protection

Little Free Library Design Competition

A competition to design a new version of the Little Free Library touches on two of my favorite things in the world — product design and books. If you aren’t familiar with Little Free Libraries, they are small containers that are installed in front yards, community centers, and public spaces all over to world to help people exchange books for free. There are nearly 40,000 of these structures worldwide, and Chronicle Books. Little Free Library, and AIA SF are inviting architects and designers to rethink the structure and solve some problems cited by users in the field. Challenges that the new design should try to overcome include keeping the doors shut, making it accessible at night, keeping it water-tight and heatproof, and perhaps my favorite, serving small children and tall adults alike. The jury includes architects, editors, and designers, and the prizes include an architecture library from Chronicle Books and other goodies. If I designed one, I’d love a little solar panel on top that lights it up at night when the door opens and …

Nanuknano Rugged Case by Plasticase

For 30 years, Plasticase has designed, manufactured, and sold millions of plastic cases worldwide. The company currently works mainly on a B2B (business-to-business) basis, tailoring its products to the specialized needs of fields such as medical equipment, electronics, tools, military, and law enforcement. In late 2012, Plasticase hired Météore Design to create an all-new consumer-oriented outdoor line of small handheld cases called Nanuknano. The impact- and water-resistant cases protect personal belongings like smartphones, wallets, and cameras, on hikes, boat rides, and anywhere else you need extra protection. The cases, which come in eight colors and three sizes, feature shock-resistant polycarbonate resin shells, a patented PowerClaw latch, a valve for pressure control, and an elastomer over-molding that provides both internal protection and exterior shock absorption. You can carry the case using an adjustable wrist strap or by attaching it securely to a boat, belt, or knapsack. The cases are available worldwide via Plasticase.com. $19.99 U.S. (small); $24.99 U.S. (medium); $29.99 U.S. (large).   ‘   Images courtesy of Plasticase Inc.

Stay-Brella by Nendo

This clever “stay-brella”— created by the Japanese design firm Nendo exclusively for Seibu department stores in Japan — has a forked handle design that gives it a foot to stand on when not in use. This little feature also allows the umbrella to easily hang from tables and stay propped up on a wall when drying. The umbrella comes in eight different colors and has a strap to hang from the arm. A special surface coating reduces UV rays by 90%, a great feature in a country where folks use umbrellas for sun protection as much, if not more often, than rain protection. All photos by Akihiro Yoshida.