All posts filed under: Things for Reading

Book Review: DesignPOP

Hitting bookshelves this month, the neon pink, padded vinyl covered DesignPOP is a 216-page tome to contemporary product design written by designer and collector Lisa S. Roberts. Published by Rizzoli, DesignPOP includes 82 works created from 2000-2014 from Frank Gehry, the Campana brothers, Hella Jongerius, Philippe Starck, Ron Arad, Jasper Morrison, James Dyson, and other design icons. It includes 95% original photography, designer biographies, and a “where to shop” guide along with resources for each product. Though I haven’t handled the physical book and its retro-plastic cover (I was sent a PDF to review), the internal layouts with their oversized pull-quotes and high-quality photographs certainly make for a fun read for consumers. Even design-insiders should find enough new products to keep their interest. DESIGNPOP By Lisa S. Roberts HC w/jacket / 9 1⁄2” x 9 1⁄2” / 216 pages / 175 color illustrations US $35.00 / Can $35.00 / UK £25.00 Rizzoli New York All images courtesy Rizzoli.

Architects Toybox

I never promote my own projects on this blog, but I think that I have a good reason to with the launch of my second product design blog Architects Toybox. While designythings will continue to be a curated list of gifts, gadgets, and gear, Architects Toybox will be a resource for architects, designers, and consumers looking for the latest architectural building product news — from lighting fixtures to plumbing fixtures. I plan to update the site a few times a week and will covering the latest products from around the world. Recent posts include a review of a new coffee table book full of inspiring tree house designs, a prototype for a flying cleaning robot, and an LED light from 3M that uses reflective film technology to can stretch the light from a single LED to multiple fixtures. Check it out if you get a moment, and don’t forget to sign up for the email list to keep up with the latest news.

Saving the Hamilton Wood Type & Printing Museum

Jim Moran got some bad news last October while he was preparing for the Hamilton Wood Type & Printing Museum’s annual conference in Two Rivers, Wisconsin. Moran, who is director of the world’s only museum dedicated to the preservation, study, production, and printing of wood type, was told by his landlord that the museum had six months to find a new home. The news wasn’t entirely a shock. Moran and his small team had noticed that the building owner, lab equipment manufacturer Thermo Fisher Scientific, had begun downsizing the employees that shared the massive building, which was rapidly deteriorating. The museum, which was founded in 1999, took up 12,000-square-feet (with an additional 25,000 for storage) of the three-block long, 1.3 million-square-foot facility that the Hamilton Manufacturing Company had built, and added to, from 1910 to 1926. The manufacturer had donated free rent, lighting, and heat to the museum, but they were now closing their Two Rivers plant and moving production elsewhere. (MORE AFTER PHOTOS) Moran had to quickly raise the estimated $250,000 needed to pack …

WakaWaka Blackout Emergency Kit

While I really could have used this little device after Hurricane Sandy, when my family and I were without power for 10 days, it is the potential it offers for those with homes that are always off the grid that is even greater. The WakaWaka Power (you have to try to get past the image of Fozzie the Bear from the Muppet Show, if you can) is a solar-powered LED lamp and mobile charger in one. This is a product with a huge demand at the moment — the Dutch company Off Grid Solutions launched it in December on Kickstarter and within a week became one of the most funded projects on the site (the campaign ends on January 12th and to date has raised almost $275,000 U.S.). The iPhone-sized kit weighs seven ounces, delivers up to 60 lumens of bright, safe reading light for more than 40 hours on an eight hour solar charge, and can charge mobile phones from all brands. The battery will stay fresh for more than a year — users should …