The thing really keeps me writing is finding innovative little projects like this one from Gareth Hughes called 2 Sugars. This is simply a concept that he created but I thought it was so clever I had to share. The idea is simple, a lot of people have to get coffee or tea or drinks for their co-workers but it’s often difficult to remember what everyone wants. Enter 2 Sugars which allows you to easily create users and then input what each one of them wants by simple clicking the options on the screen. There’s even the tiny detail of shaking the screen to clear your order, which could be really fun or frustrating. Either way I think Gareth needs to make this app a reality, don’t you?
Creating simple but memorable branding is difficult. Putting enough style and character into something without it being too precious is a fine line to tread but I think the folks over at Menosunocerouno have done it well with their work for Basanti, a tea brand from Mexico. There’s not much too it, some elegantly written words in chalk on black background, but the gloss of the bags and the matte of the coffee cups make it look quite nice. The effect is also quite nice on the clear cool drink cup with the drink itself acting as the background for the text. Very understated but beautiful at the same time.
In the same vein as so many of my friends and acquaintances I have a love/hate relationship with Swedish homewares giant IKEA; however, I love everything about their new book of baking recipes, Hembakat är Bäst (Homemade Is Best). Styled by Evelina Bratell and photographed by Carl Kleiner, the cookbook’s photography eschews only presenting the finished dish in favour of also capturing the ingredients in artfully arranged still life imagery. It’s a little like deconstructed food photography where intricately displayed piles of sugar, egg yolks and vanilla pods are works of art. As far as I can tell the book is only available in instore in Sweden, but hopefully it will also be released internationally. At least my stomach hopes so.
This weekend I came across a couple of videos that seemed to have a common bond, that of masters and their crafts. It’s been said that it takes 10 years to master something, be it a language, Photoshop or something random like juggling. The guys above in these videos, Chad Robertson and Peter Welfare, excel in their fields because they’re passionate about what they do.
Mr. Robertson co-owns Tartine, a bakery in San Francisco where he hand makes the bread every day, in fact, the restaurant is now famous because of it. Mr. Welfare on the other hand is the president and head inkmaker at The Printing Ink Company. These are pretty much on opposite ends of the spectrum yet their both still masters of what they do. They take extreme care in their methods and their craft is more akin to art than labor.
If you have the time watch both of these videos and soak in some inspiration.
A few months ago I was wondering around the amazing Monsieur Marcels, a gourmet market here in Los Angeles with a ton of delectable goodies. While browsing I came across the amazing chocolate you see above called TCHO, a San Francisco based company that’s making an art out of chocolate. The company is made up of around two dozen people who have a love for chocolate, though clearly they have an equal love for design.
A lot of people suggest that you shouldn’t judge a book by it’s cover, but I absolutely judged this chocolate by it’s packaging. The amazing combination of brown with the gold swirls, which remind me of the guilloché you find on money, would grab your attention from across the room as far as I’m concerned. As for the chocolate itself it was absolutely delicious, though I doubt I could tell you the difference between brands.
It’s also of note that TCHO seems to have a chocolate tasting storefront somewhere along the pier in San Francisco. While I was visiting San Francisco a few weeks ago Kyle and I walked by it but decided not to stop by. Has anyone else been there for a tasting?