Thursday, May 29, 2008

Keep Calm Gallery

A friend of mine recently turned me on to Keep Calm Gallery. The site is loaded with prints bearing quirky and yet poignant sayings. Below are just a few of my favorites...

Which brings me to my love of maps. I've been eyeing some vintage maps at Aria in North Beach, but they are a bit out of my price range. OK, more like $300 out of my price range but they have the USSR on them - I can't resist!  The Soviet Union itself fell under less pressure than this!

Buck up!


Saturday, May 24, 2008

Mission Dolores

My mother once remarked that the Mission reminds her of a Wes Anderson Movie. While I've yet to spot any Gypsy cabs, I have found that the Mission does seem to possess the same idiosyncratic eclecticism and questionably ironic self-awareness that make Mr. Anderson's films so enjoyable. Below are just a few of my favorite neighborhood sights...

Lunch with my friend Tony at Tartine.

The endlessly entertaining X-21: a vintage/collectible warehouse which boasts a disorganized array of everything from a Styrofoam superman to crocodile hides. While trying to navigate the chaotic quagmire that is their basement I ran into an older British gentleman ailing from a tequila-induced hangover.  In the course of inquiring about several of their unique wares, he not only proved less than helpful, but managed to insult every item I showed any interest in. When I commented on his poor salesmanship he scoffed and said he was the store's visual design person. Go figure.

More X-21 treasures...

Time to shop!

My neighborhood liquor store which I secretly think is run by the Russian mafia.  If this is the last blog post ever, you'll know that the owners were Light Telescopic fans who were less than happy that they'd been outed.

This sign was posted in the window of vintage housewares shop The Apartment.   The shopkeeper looked at me like I was crazy when I asked if I could take a picture of his "Photo Menu." Apparently, he failed to see any humor in "3 persons photos men & Womens".

More from The Apartment...


Art Spotlight: Dennis De Bel

I just tripped across the work of Dutch artist Dennis De Bel today, and I couldn't wait to share it.  The piece which really caught my eye was 'Naaitafel', in which De Bel re-engineers a vintage Singer into a record player (probably appealing because it marries my two favorite vintage appliances into one twisted monstrosity of nostalgia).  The title is derived from the similarity between the Dutch words for "sewing table" and "turntable."

Check out his website for many other quirky objects, many of which toy with off-beat overlaps of form and/or function, as well as our culture's unholy reverence of technology.
Another gem is the 'Stratenspeler,' which signifies a "street-player" as opposed to a record player.  It amplifies the sound of whatever textural surface it's placed on, allowing the user to create a looped feed of say, a crack in the sidewalk, the sound of grass on a warm summer evening, or the sweet song of hot inner-city asphalt.


Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Procrastination is the name of the game

Am struggling with the worst sort of ADD so instead of actually buckling down and working on my commercial design project, I thought I'd share a few images I've found inspiring thus far. 

The final project for the class is to design a retail space via perspective drawings, material boards and CAD drawings. I was originally going to design a vintage/furniture store similar to Swallowtail on Polk St. (see below) with lots of architectural elements...

...however, as I became more involved with the project I realized that my favorite part of that space was an area housing design books that I had dubbed the I decided to scratch my original idea and am now designing a vintage bookstore.

A (very illegaly shot) picture of Will Wick's library at this year's Designer Showcase.

OK, this picture is not so much inspiration for any of the architecture or interior design of my project, but it's exactly how I'd like to look if I owned such a bookstore. hehehe.

My apologies if the image above is a bit blurry - I just took a shot of my inspiration board at home.

The last 4 pictures were orignally posted by the lovely Automatism --one of my new favorite blogs.


Friday, May 9, 2008

Abandoned Treasure

Here are some more images we captured while checking out the Pinhole Photography exhibition at Rayko studio.  After we returned from the exhilarating ride aboard the Bus Obscura, we got distracted (as curious little girls with cameras often do) and began wandering through the urban wasteland under the freeway, snapping shots of all the eye-candy/industrial detritus we found there. 

The higher the graffiti, the closer to god?

Such a sweetly proud logo

A close-up of part of an enormous mountain of snowy white scrap metal

An unfinished thought

5 o'clock shadow

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

The New York Revue

After being inundated with requests by anxious and impatient Telescopic superfans, I have acquiesced and finally produced some blog-worthy selections from my (not-so-recent-anymore) trip to New York...


These first few are shots taken aboard the Long Island RailRoad... just some cool metalwork and industrial dinosaurs.

I spent a day in Brooklyn with my friend Ahsen, where we took tea, Williamsburg-style:

...and then enjoyed a delicious afternoon brunch (the best kind) at Egg.  Here's Ahsen & co. while we wait for our table.

While in Brooklyn, we checked out The Future Perfect, a totally awesome spot well-stocked with hand-picked furniture and accessories for the modern urbanite/borough-dweller...

...including some bad-ass jewelry personally made by the adorable Kiel Mead (jeweler/shopboy/cutie)...

... and these fine art skateboards (they read Father/Son/Holy Ghost).

Another lovely New York day was spent, West Village style, with my good friend Will.

I was lucky enough to get taken on a tour of this adorable neighborhood, stopping at a couple of his favorite spots, which I'm delighted to share with you!
Our first stop was Lord Willy's: a little nook of a men's shop where sharp-dressing New Yorkers can get outfitted with the finest in haberdashery: colorful shirts and ties, heirloom-quality suiting, and cheeky cufflinks.  Keep your eyes peeled: you'll know it by the garden gnome standing guard in the front window.

"Don't be silly. There's no such thing as too many shirts!"

Will also took me to Greenwich Letterpress, one of the most adorable card shops I've ever been to (and I've been to a lot!) -- it's beautifully arranged and packed with charming stationery, hand-selected cards, antique-y bookplates and vintage maps.

He also turned me on to my new favorite stationer: Jonathan Wright.  I love to get some anatomy with my correspondence.  Thanks, Will!

And thanks to the entire city of New York for keeping its shops tended by adorable and charming shopboys the whole city over.  How can you not love this?