March 26, 2015


Arktivas 1Conceived by the German designer and engineer Werner Sobek, the Aktivhaus is a sophisticated modular and modernist home that generates twice as much energy as it consumes. Its components are fully recyclable, and take only a day to assemble; and the fact the modules can be stacked suggests they could be suited to high-density cities.

Sobek first started developing the Aktivhaus concept in 2000, when the design community was forced to consider fossil fuels, global warming and population growth. In this case, it was a house that produced no emissions or waste, and derived no energy from fossil fuels – three tenets Sobek refers to as the Triple Zero standard. The current Aktivhaus prototype in Stuttgart, Germany – nicknamed B10 – is powered by photovoltaic thermal panels on its roof, which generate electricity that creates heat as a byproduct. Fantastic right!

B10 doesn’t require as much energy as your typical home, thanks to the clever engineering of Sobek. The most intriguing element is that the house is connected to local weather stations so that it can adjust its energy usage based on the forecast. The inclusion of an underground ice storage tank also cuts down on energy needs by removing the need for traditional heating and air conditioning systems. “In summer, the ice is used to cool the house. By melting, it absorbs heat energy,” Sobek says. “In winter, it gradually freezes. Each time a chuck of water turns into ice, a certain amount of heat energy is released, which is then used to heat the house via a heat pump, which brings the energy to a higher temperature level.”

While the current prototype was imagined for high-density cities, Sobek hopes to bring the concept to all regions. This year, prototypes will be built in southern Argentina and Patagonia, while 2016 will see the Aktivhaus debut in Siberia and Turkey.


Submitted by: Dwayne


Posted by Mike McAllister 9:45am in Architecture, Design Trends, Designer Homes, Going Green, Gotta Have It, Modern Technology Comments Off

March 25, 2015

A Starck Vortex

Philippe Starck‘s collaboration with AXOR, designer brand of Hansgrohe, has seen the French designer reshape the traditional aesthetic of the bathroom faucet through the introduction of softer shapes and flowing lines. Continuing with these creative sensibilities, he follows up with the ‘AXOR Starck V’ mixer — a design that brings forth a transparent, sculptural washbasin faucet that bridges the gap between the functional and emotional aspects of water at the washbasin.

A Starck Vortex
The technical innovations of ‘AXOR Starck V’ cannot go unmentioned. The transparency of the spout is rendered in organic crystal glass material, which is both sustainable and durable. With the importance of AXOR / Hansgrohe’s ecological values in mind, the faucet produces a flow-rate of 4L per minute, saving water without compromising user experience. What is unique about the open two-piece design is that it has a detachable spout, which is easily removed and installed via a click-in connection between it and its body. This feature allows for effortless cleaning (as it can also be removed and put in the dishwasher), spare part handling and flexible installation of its mixer body with the washbasin.
The spout itself is available in a range of options which include diamond and bevel cut versions that bring opulent glass elegance to the bathroom. These are a result of a high-quality diamond polishing technique, which is renowned for producing harmonious geometrical shapes that refract light. The precise placement of the cut edges at the spout’s base ensures that the water and vortex always remain visible to the eye. Additionally, a porcelain option is also available, which gives the seemingly fragile material hints of a softer dimension, and which visually harmonizes mixer and washbasin as one. Each mixer comes in 15 different finishes, and can be installed with either a lever or joystick handle. We can expect nothing less from Starck.

Submitted by: Crystal


Posted by Mike McAllister 4:17pm in Design Trends, Industrial Design, Uncategorized Comments Off

March 24, 2015

DESIGNER PROFILE: Nanna Ditzel ( Denmark, 1923- 2005)

Nanna Ditzel was the most versatile and creative female designer that Denmark produced in the 20th century. Ditzel brought her talents to bear on a staggering array of forms — she designed furniture, jewelry, tableware and textiles; and she shaped her pieces using an equally astonishing variety of materials, from wood and wicker to silver, ceramics and fiberglass.

Born in Copenhagen, she trained as a cabinetmaker at the Royal Academy’s furniture school — overseen by the great craftsman of the day, Kaare Klint — and graduated in 1943. Ditzel’s early work adhered to the classic Danish modernist tenets of simplicity, comfort and quality, and her armchairs, with their softly curved backrests are much in the spirit of Hans Wegner. Ditzel’s signature piece of that time is her “Ring chair.”Designed along with her husband, Jørgen Ditzel, a fabric maker, the chair has a semicircular padded armrest that seems to embrace the sitter. Ditzel began designing in wicker and in 1959 produced the “Hanging chair.” The piece, suspended from the ceiling by a chain, became a favorite for fashion shoots and may be as iconic of the 1960s as Eero Aarnio’s plastic ball chair of 1963.

Ditzel 2Ditzel 3
In 1956, Ditzel began designing for the Danish silverware firm Georg Jensen. In an association that lasted some 40 years, Ditzel would create organically shaped jewelry, barware, ceramic tableware and even tablecloths. Like her fellow Dane Verner Panton, Ditzel was not afraid to embrace industrial materials, and she began designing fiberglass chairs in the mid-1960s. Some of her most flamboyant work came toward the end of her career, in pieces such as 1989’s “Bench for Two,” with its shocking Op-art finish, or the “Trinidad chair” of 1992, with it’s sunburst-like, cut-though backs. Such feats of creativity were a fitting coda to one of the most imaginative, prolific and remarkable women of modern design.

Ditzel 4
Submitted by: Daniel

Source: 1stDib

Posted by Mike McAllister 4:06pm in Uncategorized Comments Off

March 20, 2015


March Madness 3

Don’t miss this years March Madness sale. For 10 days only take 10% off your purchase of $500 or more and receive free local delivery. Save on any items we sell including in stock or special orders. There is no quantity limit, so now is the time to get all of the pieces you have been waiting for!

Sale ends Sunday March 29, 2015. This offer may not be combined with other promotional pricing. This offer does not apply to Sales Orders prior to March 20, 2015.

Posted by Mike McAllister 9:00am in Sale, Staff Picks Comments Off

March 19, 2015

Traveling Library

Traveling LibraryIn celebration of world book day on 5th march, 7UP has teamed up with Buenos Aires-based artist Raul Lemesoff in the creation of ‘Weapons of Mass Instruction’, a traveling library that tours Argentina in the shape of a tank. The ongoing project, which Lemesoff has built upon throughout the last few years, sees a 1979 ford falcon transform into a military-style vehicle, with a rotating upper chamber and pseudo-barrel. Although the tank may look militant, it has a very serious function of peace — Lemesoff tours through Argentina’s urban centers and rural communities, offering free books to anyone interested. Around 900 books fit on the car’s built-in shelves, with a varied collection of poetry, novels and biographies. The creative collaboration with 7UP is in continuation of their ‘Feels Good to be You’ campaign, which seeks to celebrate originality, wit, and unmistakable authenticity.

Submitted by: Crystal

Source: designboom

Posted by Mike McAllister 9:45am in Automobiles, Charitable causes, Industrial Design, Museums Comments Off

March 16, 2015

Shopping Local

makers arcadeThis ain’t your grandma’s flea market. Today’s consumer has a discerning eye for quality, and the Makers Arcade Spring Fair aims to deliver. From 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, March 21, at the North Park Post Office (3077 North Park Way), folks can peruse products from some of San Diego’s best artists and crafters. Featuring more than 50 vendors, the event will include upcycled goods from Kelso Doesn’t Dance, bowls and pottery from Case Ceramics, beauty products from Jae & Leona and stationary from Redstar Ink (shown here). Other vendors include local faves like Make Good, Rais Case, The Library Shop and Two Hermanas. There’ll also be food and refreshments available from Mastiff Sausage Co., Hess Brewing, Wow Wow Waffles, SD Bean Bar and Calexico Creamery. The $2 admission includes a raffle ticket and the first 100 folks in line will receive a free swag bag.

Submitted by: Alison

Source: San Diego City Beat

Posted by Mike McAllister 4:14pm in Gotta Have It, Local Happenings Comments Off

March 13, 2015

Record Keeper

Record Keeper

Throughout the day we have all kinds of thoughts that pop in our head that we might want to jot down. Kirsten Camara created the Analog Memory Desk as a way to record all those small details that we need in the moment but will forget by tomorrow. Her exploration of how we remember the past led to the desk, which has 1,100 yards of paper that you can scroll through capturing all those phone numbers, street names, or long division you had to do on the fly. All those bits of information pass us by, never needing to be revisited so Camara asked the question, “Does the sum of all these tiny parts produce a new narrative on our lives?”

Submitted by: Crystal

Source: Design Milk

Posted by Mike McAllister 10:00am in Uncategorized Comments Off

March 12, 2015

Impressive 3D Street Art Created with Recycled Materials

Portuguese street artist Artur Bordalo, aka Bordalo II, uses mixed media to create his own interpretations of the urban landscape and environment. He often composes his works using various found items that he merges together into beautiful forms. In that sense, his street art is unique because it appears slightly three-dimensional and is presented in surprisingly tactile formations.

Recycled Art
Recently, Bordalo II was invited to produce an installation as part of WOOL, an urban art festival in Covilhã, Portugal. It took him a little more than one week to create Owl Eyes, a collaged owl composed of found trash and recycled materials. The piece towers high over pedestrians in a rusty compilation of metal, tires, and paint. Bordalo II then painted the background with a vibrant green and colorful polka dots. By transforming the otherwise dank, empty space into a work of art, the artist told WOOL that he intended to send a message “that culture and education are being neglected in this place.”

Submitted by: Alison

Source: mymodernmet

Posted by Mike McAllister 4:45pm in Art, Craftsmanship, Going Green Comments Off

March 11, 2015


We are pleased to introduce the Madison chair designed by Henrik Pedersen // 365 North as part of the m collection by Mobital.
Madison 1

Madison 2

When you first experience the Madison you are drawn to the classic design of perfect proportion and scale. The sleek metal legs create the support and pitch of the best seat in the house. Stop by today to experience design and comfort all in one.

The Madison Available in cognac leather, dark gray tweed or light blue denim

Madison 4

Posted by Mike McAllister 8:36pm in Chair Design, Craftsmanship, Modern Furniture Comments Off

March 10, 2015

Cicret Bracelet Turns Skin Into a Touchscreen Display

cicret 1
After years of wearing early iterations of smart wearable devices (whether for fitness or for data/communication) and perusing the aisles of new and upcoming wearables at this year’s CES, I’ve come to the conclusion the technology still has a way to go before become natural extensions of our lives and universally adopted. The biggest obstacle beyond battery life and unique apps specific to the wearable experience is user accessibility/screen legibility. We’ve all become accustomed to increasingly larger smart device displays, and navigating a small wrist display can feel regressive and unnecessarily challenging. But one developer is hoping to bridge the divide between utility and legibility, ditching tiny screens and proposing we use our own skin as a touchscreen display.


Currently a concept-only, the Cicret Bracelet is envisioned by its French developers as an Android powered, wrist-worn smart device which trades in the usual eye-squint inducing 1.5″-2″ displays for a pico projection solution. An array of “long range sensors” allows users to touch and tap the projected screen across their arms and wrists just like a smartphone, all without the worry of dropping a fragile screen.
The challenge for Circet’s developers will be three-fold: 1. engineering the pico projection system for sufficient brightness and resolution to be usable in environments beyond optimally dark rooms, 2. fitting enough processing and graphical power into a wrist form factor, and 3. offering users a reasonable battery life. Factoring in the state of projection display, processing power vs. chip size, and current battery capacity, the Cicret is an inventive solution which will likely have to wait for cost/performance to catch up with its proposed utility and feature, but one with promise.

Submitted by: Alison

Source: Design Milk

Posted by Mike McAllister 7:56pm in Design in Fashion, Gotta Have It, Technology Comments Off