Category: designers

Specs

Thursday 09.05.13

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I came upon this box of wooden eyeglass models when going through my mother’s house. The pieces were stacked on end, so it wasn’t immediately obvious what they were. Holy crap!!! What a crazy wonderful surprise. Howard G. Jones, my stepfather, was an industrial designer who was born in 1910. He knew how to do things the old fashioned way, and these treasures are perfect examples of his world of analog design.

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Color Studies

Tuesday 08.27.13

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Amazing color studies created by my stepfather Howard G. Jones, and his first wife Eleanor. I believe they were both in art school at the time. In 1926! The first in a series of posts on analog designs and quirky objects discovered in my mother’s home.

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Pencil Sharpener

Tuesday 02.05.13

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I really really like this little critter. Put him to work sharpening your pencils. Designed by Rodrigo Torres Kastor for Alessi. Not available yet. But soon. Soon. Makes a nice companion to his other design: a bird in the form of a paper clip holder. Oops…via designboom!

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Swatches

Monday 02.04.13

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My friend Nancy is an accomplished surface designer who, over the years, has created a range of hand-painted dinnerware for various clients here and far. I asked her if she would send me the rough swatches of stripes and marks that are a product of her pattern development . She happily complied. This is only the smallest selection from her archive. Again, it’s the process that catches my eye. Sometimes I feel as though we are losing out to technology when it comes to the incremental stages of creativity. Maybe. Maybe not.

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Chalk

Friday 12.14.12

Chalkboard paint started it all. I think Martha Stewart popularized it. And then Dana Tanamachi took it to new and exciting heights. I speak of chalkboard lettering. An earlier post about Dana here. The nicely packaged Chalk is available here.

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The Chair

Friday 08.31.12

I wonder how Sergio Mian feels about having his Baba Barstool co-opted by Clint Eastwood, theĀ  RNC and Invisible Obama.

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The Modern Skateboard

Tuesday 03.27.12

I read the obituaries in the NYT every day. And I know I’m not alone. I take heart when those, to whom tribute is paid, were at least over 90 when they died. And I find even deeper inspiration from those who were still working away at something they loved. One of the best obituaries I ever read was for a blacksmith by the name of Francis Whitaker. He worked almost right up to the end and, miraculously, grasped a hammer on his deathbed. Today’s obits required two full pages. Never good. Some names held meaning for me in a distant way. Others I had never heard of. Larry Stevenson is one of the latter. I learned that in the Southern California of the early 1960s, he went from lifeguard to successful and innovative skateboard designer in the most linear of careers. He began building surfboard-like skateboards, but by 1969 he introduced a new design that incorporated a “kicktail”: that singular modification to the standard surfboard shape that allowed skateboarders to embark on those crazy airborne tricks that demarcate the skateboarding style that we see today. To his credit, he patented both the single and double kicktail. RIP Mr. Stevenson. Photos courtesy of Lion City Skaters.

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