Friday, October 31

poster love

via Visual Culture

Tuesday, October 21

Cross Cultural Collaboration in Design

The October issue of Metropolis Magazine has two stories of artisans being paired across cultures to create unique creations for the marketplace.

In Pragmatic Idealism, Belinda Lanks interviews Docey Lewis. Now a design consultant for
3form, Lewis has over 20 years experience working with Aid to Artisans a non-profit that matches traditional crafters with international consultants and merchants.

Lewis shares her experiences coordinating collaborative projects and discusses some of the challenges that arise when balancing the demands of business, humanitarian efforts and design across countries such as Nepal, Senegal and Jordan.

Making Connections describes Andrew and Anna Hellman as professional matchmakers. As co-founders of Teroforma, a tableware company launched in August, the Hellmans travel the world seeking out talented designers whom they connect with traditional artisan studios. Andrew is quoted,"It's that relationship that we want to build and those stories that we want to tell through the work. There's a depth behind the pieces."

photo via Metropolis

Saturday, October 18


korean designer jaebeom jeong's cartrider.
photo via Core 77

Tuesday, October 14

Dumpster Diving Pt. 1

I love trash, is the title of a documentary I recently viewed during the '08 BendFilm festival. The production quality of the film was not great but the anti-consumption message had some resonance with the crowd.

For me, it brought back a faded childhood memory, that of dumpster diving. It was back in the 80's. I was just a wee lass visiting Bellingham, Washington along with my two younger sisters. Our favorite hippy Aunt T was responsible for us girls while our parents were on their own vacation.

During our stay Aunt T, a professional musician, had a scheduled performance. In order to take time to prepare for her concert, she left us in the care of her former flame, Otter (in truth, his nick name).

Otter was a capable but less than traditional care provider. He told my two younger sisters and I that he'd like to take us on a hike to pie land.

Pie land? We were intrigued. He led us on a trail down to the Bellingham Bay where he perched on a rock and rolled himself a cigarette. We watched him intently, afraid to ask if we had arrived at our destination.

Finally my sister Melissa, always the brave one, served as our spokesgirl. "This isn't pie land is it?"

"Right, pie land...Actually, we will have to return to the car to get to pie land."

Ah, the old bait and switch.

We soon hurried along back up the trail carrying hope that our trust in this Otter character was not misplaced and that we would indeed arrive at our magical sounding destination.

After loading into the car, Melissa asked "So, where is pie land?"

"Oh, not far from here."

Otter turned up the Simon & Garfunkel and sang off-key cruising along Chuckanut Drive. A few minutes later he pulled into a grocery store parking lot.

Oh, I get it, I thought. Now he's going to buy us a pie. Cute.

Instead of parking in front of the store, Otter pulled around back to the dumpster area.

"You see girls, a lot of good pies, cookies and donuts get thrown away every day. Hop out of the car."

Code red
in my head. Yet, ever the obedient child I stepped out, as commanded. My sisters also followed and the three of us lined up facing the dumpster a few feet away.

Otter beckoned us all to join him as he lifted the dumpster lid up and pushed it back. He then began searching and sorting. Sure enough, he began showing us his prizes. Donuts indeed but without the pink box they usually lived in. He dusted off a sugar donut, took a bite and smiled.

"Yummy!"he proclaimed.

I remained frozen in my spot. Could we get in trouble for this? Maybe thrown in jail? What if our Aunt T had no idea where we were and we got stuck in jail?

"What will you have?" Otter looked at me directly, "Maple bar?"

"Um, no thanks, I'm okay." I made eye contact with my sisters non-verbally suggesting we get our asses back into the yellow VW.

"Oh, I get it. You think there is something wrong with this food because it's in the bin here. Well, let me tell you, it's perfectly fine." He made the statement simply and calmly, then returned his focus to the search.

Time passed slowly as I turned my attention to play the role of the lookout, just in case.

"Here we go girls!" Otter turned towards us raising his treasure high up in the air. It was a shiny-black-bottomed-hard-plastic container. And within it, a whole cherry pie.

Saturday, October 11

Macro Trend: Frugality

Tree Hugger's October 6, 2008 Quote of the day goes to Paul Kedrosky: "Frugality is the new black". Kedrosky alludes to this prescient August '08 post from Merril Lynch Economist David Rosenberg.

Unsurprisingly the word pops up in many of the choice weekend reads. It's all over the NY Times. Style and Travel take the frugal angle:

Frugal New York

The Frugal Teenager Ready or Not

Tips at these sites:

Simple Dollar

Frugal Village

Share your stories and/or links in the comments. I expect many days of resourceful living to come.