July 31, 2008
Posted By: katie

Last weekend at Terrain I spotted a line of beauty products by Akhassausa that are beautifully designed. Their two small lines, nature and retreat, are differentiated by accent color. The floral graphic on the bottles is part of Akhassausa’s identity and helps to brand the company while adding a nice graphic touch. I was immediately drawn to the “wooden” tops — they looked especially great in Terrain’s spa section amongst the aged wooden displays tables (see image in-store below). I was disappointed when I realized that the tops were actually printed woodgrain on plastic! I suppose real custom wood tops would drive the production cost far above the products’ price point, but still what a bummer! Although environmentally speaking, which is worse, plastic tops or wood?

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July 31, 2008
Posted By: Sheri

What does it take to stand out in the crowd or on the shelves? Personality. A memorable hook. Being remarkable. So then how do you become remarkable? Most companies spend their time chasing after the competition with a game of “me too” or “more of this” and “better that”. How dull.

I think the better way to stand out is to be yourself. You are after all inherently unique so why wouldn’t the business you create for yourself and the products/services you provide be just as unique? Case in point when our friend Malcolm wanted to start a wine label he didn’t just run out and throw another set of fancy fonts over burgundy paper, he actually married the two things he loved most, wine and modern art into the core of his brand. Thus Nicholls Wine, fine wine, fine art was born.

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July 31, 2008
Posted By: Marc

I’m just back from a week away at one of my favorite places in the world: Block Island, RI. For those of you who don’t know about “BI,” here are some facts: It’s a tiny island in the Atlantic about 12 miles off the coast from Rhode Island, and accessible only by ferry and prop planes. Its 17 miles of beaches are exquisite, and most people opt for mopeds and bicycles as their primary mode transport. Save for a lone Starbucks, it’s amazingly free from chains.

Being such a small place, people hold it dear in their hearts—be it day-trippers, snowbirds, or the residents themselves. The island’s 900 year-rounder’s are an especially hardy bunch, battling the rough New England elements in near solitude. (Last year’s high school class had 4 proud graduates.)

If you’re not a fan of quaint cottages, easygoing attitudes, happy families, and small town charm you need not apply.

One of the most charming—and ubiquitous—images is that of the island itself. The iconic shape is omnipresent, emblazoned in clothing, knick-knacks, signage, cars, and even food. I tried my best to document the amazing display of local pride, which often was done in earnest, although a large portion bordered on kitsch…

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July 28, 2008
Posted By: MSLK

MSLK-FNW_home

Challenges
Fashion News Workshop, the second largest fashion organization in NYC, needed a web presence that reflected the organization’s quality and sophistication. Furthermore, it was important to create a website that could be easily updated with current events.

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July 28, 2008
Posted By: ellen

Terrain at Styers

This weekend, Katie, Jason and I took a roadtrip to Philadelphia to visit friends. I had heard about Terrain, a garden center store in the suburbs, so we made a little detour on our way home. Having read it was owned by the Urban Outfitters crew, I was pretty excited to see what they would do with a palette of plants. It turned out to be a graphic designer/gardener wannabe’s delight! The expansive store mixes indoor and outdoor space by incorporating a series of farmhouses and greenhouses that connect the outdoor garden areas. While the focus is on the garden, they also sell a variety housewares and have a nice little cafe. More pictures after the jump.

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July 25, 2008
Posted By: ellen

Kashi U

This week I noticed a new Kashi product on the shelves. They’ve introduced a new line of cereal called Kashi U, a “vitality cereal” that’s designed to strengthen five areas of the body: the heart, the immune system, bones, digestion, and the brain. Despite the virtues of a yet healthier Kashi, they’ve also made strides with their design on this venture. The box is made from 100% recycled paper (80% post consumer content). It’s printed with vegetable inks and manufactured with 100% windpower. The design isn’t so bad either…

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July 18, 2008
Posted By: Sheri

For years now we have this one game that we always play on vacation. We call it a very sophisticated title, “the drawing game,” but it does in fact have a real name or at-least the concept has a name, Exquisite Corpse.

On a piece of paper you draw something from the head to the shoulders. Then you fold the paper down, hiding everything you just drew except 2 guidelines for the next player. You pass your paper to the left and pick up the player to your right’s paper to draw from the shoulders to the waist. Again you pass papers and draw from the waist to the knees, pass and draw from the knees to the feet. The result is a completely spontaneous creature created by 4 different people.

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July 17, 2008
Posted By: claudia

After many months of planning, organizing, and designing, we’re finally there: our eco-art installation is ready to be shipped to Burning Man’s Playa! Again, thanks to all of you who’ve donated plastic bags. Special thanks to our summer intern Janelle, who did a great job counting, sorting and linking the 2663 bags. Yesterday afternoon, we made some tests with 1/20 of the entire chain – the distance between two signs which will be integrated periodically throughout. Even this tiny part of the 0.33 miles long installation was pretty impressive…Below are some photos of our test run. Read more

July 14, 2008
Posted By: Marc

The virtues of good friends are widely known. Yet it’s great friends who continue to expand the definition of what great friends can be. Case in point: Rick & Karen Juneau, who sent Sheri and I a mystery basket which turned out to be a jarful of M&Ms with our faces on them. They just upped the ante. Read more

July 14, 2008
Posted By: Sheri

Biking over the Pulaski Bridge into Greenpoint the other night I spotted this amazing graffiti. Woven out of plastic bags into the fence it is the NYC skyline. If the buildings were lit you could see that the Empire State building lines up perfectly in it’s outline on the fence. The view from this bridge is always magical, but this put me over the top. Kudos to the artist for finding a clever way to re-purpose plastic bags.

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