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Design

Designing a Force for Good: Behind the Scenes of Our Hope Shines Necklace

June 30, 2017

 

For 16 years, we here at UncommonGoods have demonstrated a commitment to supporting causes we care about through our Better to Give Program, an initiative that allows us to donate $1 from each purchase to a non-profit partner of your choice (and at no additional cost to you). Earlier this year, our Product Development team joined forces with one of our longest-standing Better to Give partners, RAINN, the nation’s largest anti-sexual violence organization, to craft a unique item of jewelry to benefit their organization. The result—our Hope Shines Necklace—is an elegant emblem of what RAINN stands for, symbolizing hope, reflection, and triumph over darkness. But how did we arrive at this design?

 

 

The process was a long one—about four months—but our team began with a few ideas in mind. At first, they used text as a springboard, attempting to translate everything from statistics—like RAINN’s assertion that every 98 seconds, another American is sexually assaulted—to the number for the National Sexual Assault Telephone Hotline into wearable pieces of jewelry. Soon, however, they broadened their approach, exploring ways to highlight some of the more general themes associated with RAINN’s mission, like hope, forward motion, and the ongoing nature of one’s story.

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Design

A-Side Design: Jeff Davis’ Vintage Vinyl Bluetooth Speaker

June 16, 2017

*Editor’s note: Jeff Davis’ Vintage Vinyl Bluetooth® Speaker is coming soon to our assortment. You can be among the first to get this design by pre-ordering here.

Vintage Vinyl Bluetooth® Speaker | UncommonGoods

Side A

Fresh from its triumphant world tour on Kickstarter, Jeff Davis’ Vintage Vinyl Bluetooth® Speaker puts a new spin on old LPs, letting reclaimed vinyl play music in an innovative way: as the speaker itself. With a bemused smile, Jeff points out that you can’t drop the needle on these reshaped records, but they will play your entire digital music collection in analog-inspired style. It’s a cool way to give your smartphone an audiophile upgrade.

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Design

Wash Your Pet without Getting Drenched (Thanks to the Aquapaw)

May 22, 2017

Have you ever given a dog a bath? She probably squirmed around a bit. OK, that might be an understatement. It’s more likely that that she wouldn’t hold still, splashed around a whole lot, and then did one of those full-body doggy shakes that sent a shower your way. Almost everyone who’s owned a dog has had a similar experience. Product designer Daniel Lentz certainly has, and it got him thinking that there had to be a better way to get our furry friends squeaky clean.

The Aquapaw Dog Bathing Glove lets you keep one hand free to hold your dog’s collar or reach for the pet shampoo, while the other hand wets and scrubs. The whole time your dog is getting the spa treatment, he’s also getting a good petting. It took Daniel years of thinking about the product, piles of prototypes, and some time spent scrubbing dirty pups at a local dog shelter, but now his design is ready to make bath time easier for pet parents and their pets. The Aquapaw is coming soon to our assortment, so we asked Daniel to tell us more about his development process and why he thinks every pet owner should have an Aquapaw.

 

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Design

Nobody Puts Peanut M&Ms in the Corner: Meet the Candy Convertible

April 24, 2017

Candy Convertible - UncommonGoods

 

Perhaps you’ve never thought of the snack journey: That epic pilgrimage certain foods make from their cabinet confines to your coffee table. Find comfort in the knowledge, though, that Houston-based designers John Paul and Roya Plauché have.

“We were exploring the relationship of food and the snack journey from the kitchen to the living room,” John Paul said about the design process, which was a collaboration with the UncommonGoods Product Development team. “We had initially tried to identify the typology of foods that would be common for this type of transition, then build around them and their possible groupings.” The “typology of foods” they landed on: Sweetus Snackae. Street name: Candy.

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Design

Stats Meet Glass: Designing Our Record-Breaking Baseball Glasses

April 3, 2017

Baseball season is officially here, and we can almost hear the fans across America singing “Take Me Out to the Ball Game.” Here at UncommonGoods, we’ve been working on a new baseball-themed product for a few months: Record-Breaking Baseball Glasses. We’re excited to launch this new product just in time for baseball lovers to use for their enjoyment of cold beers or sodas alongside those peanuts and Cracker Jacks. Since I dabbled in T-ball and a little slow pitch baseball myself growing up, I was happy to put my baseball knowledge to good use in developing the set.

Record-Breaking Baseball Glasses – Set of 4, designed by UncommonGoods’ Product Development team

In true Product Development form, we often take projects down more than one path. I started the development process by exploring different design ideas (like baseball expressions and baseball pitches) and different aesthetics (for example, using newspaper baseball scores or trading cards as inspiration). Nothing seemed like a good fit.

Vintage baseball card image via Pixabay

We took a step back and asked ourselves, “What do baseball fans like?” and the answer was pretty clear: stats. Baseball fans love statistics, even the most obscure. With that in mind, we took the development of these glasses down a new path that would feature stats.

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Design

Invitation Introductions: Meet Our American Valley Wedding Stationery

March 31, 2017

American Valley Save the Date - UncommonGoods

We know planning a wedding can feel both sweet and stressful, but we’re here to help you put the focus on the former. The invitations you choose are like a little preview of the big day, so finding just the right style, colors, design, etc., can be a bit overwhelming. That’s why we’re so excited to announce our collaboration with the absolute wedding invitation experts: Crane Stationery.

As a result of joining forces with Crane, our product development team has made five complete wedding suites available to our customers, each with a distinct aesthetic and production details that make them extra special. Follow along on the blog as we introduce you to each of these suites, and find the design that’s a perfect match for your own uncommon nuptials.

Earlier this week we gave you an inside look at our Anniversary Journal Wedding Stationery, and next up is our final suite of the series: the American Valley Wedding Stationery. It features an artful design that’s customized to reflect the natural scenery surrounding your wedding.

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Design

3 Unique Ways to Style Your Nightstand

March 30, 2017

Your nightstand—it’s just the utilitarian bedside spot for stashing your alarm clock or phone, some tissues, and your latest nighttime read, right? Maybe, but it should be a whole lot more. Think about it. What’s the last thing you see at night when you reach over to turn off the light? What’s your waking sight when you reach for your alarm each morning?

Since your nightstand is the closest thing to your bed, it’s your first and last visual cue of the day—so why not give a little attention to this overlooked spot? Add some thoughtful, personalized touches that are both functional and decorative for calming your mood at night and adding some energetic pep to your morning.

Aquatic Vibes

According to Carl Jung, the sea symbolizes our collective unconscious, spilling forth each night with dreams concealed by day. The swirling waves of this bedside lantern will be just the thing for your nightstand. Made from recycled paper, the wave-printed shade casts a warm glow perfect for cozy bedtime lighting and even adjusts for brightness. | Glowing Wave Paper Lantern

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Design

Invitation Introductions: Meet Our Anniversary Journal Wedding Stationery

March 27, 2017

Anniversary Journal Save the Date - UncommonGoods

We know planning a wedding can feel both sweet and stressful, but we’re here to help you put the focus on the former. The invitations you choose are like a little preview of the big day, so finding just the right style, colors, design, etc., can be a bit overwhelming. That’s why we’re so excited to announce our collaboration with the absolute wedding invitation experts: Crane Stationery.

As a result of joining forces with Crane, our product development team has made five complete wedding suites available to our customers, each with a distinct aesthetic and production details that make them extra special. Follow along on the blog as we introduce you to each of these suites, and find the design that’s a perfect match for your own uncommon nuptials.

Anniversary Journal Wedding Stationery - UncommonGoods

Last week we gave you an inside look at our Intersection of Love Wedding Stationery. This week, we’re happy to introduce our Anniversary Journal stationery. It features a classic design that’s rife with possibilities for customization so you can subtly show off your style as a couple.

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