Design

Comments of the Week

September 10, 2011

Each week we share a few of our favorite comments from our community voting app here on our blog. This week’s comment selection is special, since our app is chalk-full of great jewelry designs from our Uncommon Jewelry Design Challenge!

Here’s what our voters are saying so far!

Glad you love Denise Harrison’s Beer Speak Jewelry, Sarah! I know what you mean. I could go for a refreshing summer ale right about now.

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Maker Stories

Beauty in Boulders

September 9, 2011

New York City designer Anna Rabinowicz studied Industrial Design as an undergrad, went on to earn an MFA in Design and an MS in Engineering from the Product Design Program of Stanford University, and has a background in technology and medical device design. Of course, with this high-tech, industrial background, it only made sense that Anna’s next step was to start working with multimillion-year-old stones.

Anna works with agate, an exceptionally strong mineral formed from cooled lava as it changes over millions of years. The volcanic rocks look average from the outside, but crack them open, and you’ll see something extraordinary–beautiful patterns of color created by water rising and falling within the bubbles in the rock over time.

The stunning stone has been incorporated into jewelry for centuries, worn and treasured to symbolize truth and inner beauty. Now, in this age of technology, Anna uses her knowledge of modern design and production to bring the age-old talisman to a new generation. Her Agate Drop Necklace is a way to own millions of years of natural history for only $120.

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The Uncommon Life

Say What?

September 8, 2011

Know a new or returning student? Copywriter Nina Mozes offers tips for how to congratulate that special someone who’s entering that bright world of homework, tests and gym class.


Having an end-of-summer bummer?

Chin up, the kids are going back to school! Time to CELEBRATE. And just pretend like you’re excited for their new milestone in education.

So. How do you say: I know you’re dreading going back to school, but I’ve been looking forward to this for months?

Here are a few ideas:

I know you needed school supplies, so surprise! Christmas is in September this year.

I signed you up for after-school activities. That way you never have to come home! It’s going to be a great year.

If you get suspended, mommy’s gonna have to quit her day drinking and that will make her very upset.

You’re gonna do great! Just don’t screw it up.

It’s a great year to make friends. And if you don’t – no worries, kids your age suck anyways.

Drive the point home with the wisdom of intellectuals:

Mark Twain: “I have never let my schooling interfere with my education.”
Sure, but considering that Twain couldn’t hold onto his finances, I’m sure he regrets not taking an accounting class.

Oscar Wilde: “Education is an admirable thing, but it is well to remember from time to time that nothing that is worth knowing can be taught.”
That is so true – what’s that? You don’t know who Oscar Wilde is? Get on that bus.

And for the serious students:

Ronald Reagan: “But there are advantages to being elected President. The day after I was elected, I had my high school grades classified Top Secret.”
You work hard enough, you do enough things right, you’ll get to pretend like your mistakes never happened. Shoot for the stars, kid.

Send them off ready to carpe diem. …That means seize the day. Jeez, doesn’t anyone take Latin anymore?

Want to send them off with more than just kind words? Check out these great gifts for students.

The Very Best Totally Wrong Test Answers

4 Function Ruler Pen

Revolver Journals

Gift Guides

Last Days of Summer

September 7, 2011

The sun is still shining, the AC is still on, and we might be able squeeze in at least one more trip to the beach. No matter how you long you try to hold on to the lazy days of summer, it’s time to admit that the season is coming to a close. But don’t worry, before back to school bells ring and leaves start turning, there’s still time to have a little fun with these clever toys and activities for kids.

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Design, The Uncommon Life

Naughty or Nice?

September 3, 2011

Ciara said: “These are HILARIOUS! Perfect for my little brother WHO SPIT GUM IN MY HAIR!!!!!”

These Little Lumps of Coal are a cute way to get back at someone who has been picking on you, without being mean. Made from organic cotton, the squeezable little lumps are much cleaner than the real deal.

Do you have a little brother who deserves a lump of coal in his stocking? Does your little one need a reminder that Santa knows whether they’ve been naughty or nice? Visit our community voting app and tell us whether these lively lumps should join our lineup before the holidays!

Design

Cute as a Bug!

September 1, 2011

Ciara said: “I love it. It’s rustic, not too cheesy, cute. It’s functional and a real conversation starter. Plus, it’s handmade in the USA!”

This delightful dwelling is as cute as the ladybugs it houses! Painted and shingled by hand, this creative garden accent is now up for voting. If you agree with Ciara, visit our community voting app and tell us what you love about the Ladybug House.

Or, if you prefer butterflies to beetles, check out the Wooden Butterfly House, also up for voting this week.

Design

This Just In: Desktop Nesting Trio

August 31, 2011

Jamie said: “Good looking, eco-friendly, great idea to help people with disabilities.”

Tamara said: “Clever use for recycled rubber.”

Rachel said: “This are very interesting and on your desk would be something to start conversations with. Then they are made in AMERICA and by people who probably enjoy their work! I would love to tell people where they could get one just like it!”

We love that this set of three desk organizers is handmade from recycled rubber by folks in a job creation program in Wisconsin. Our voting app users agreed that these sturdy baskets are a cute (and practical!) way to store pens, pencils, paperclips, and more.

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