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Bookbinding

For those who adore the beauty of a blank-page-in-waiting, behold! The incredible allure of a hardback book you make yourself is just too damn much to resist.
November 1, 2011
randy brown omaha nebraska slat house

Slat Happy

Budget supplies become modern design gold in this Omaha home.
November 1, 2011
Rapson Chairs drawing

Ralph Rapson's Chairs

Though plenty of architects turn their attentions to furniture, few can claim authorship of a proper classic. Ralph Rapson, the Minnesotan modernist who designed the original Guthrie Theater and scores of other midwestern gems, is one. His Rapson line for Knoll in 1945 helped bring American modernism into post-war homes. A new show, starting Friday, November 4th at Archer, Washington D.C.'s leading showroom for 20th-century design, celebrates Rapson for his contributions to the art of the chair. The show, "Ralph Rapson: The Architect as Chair Designer", offers a glimpse of Rapson's works, like the Rapson rocker, but also demonstrates what a spectacular draftsman Rapson was. If architecture ever let him down, Rapson could easily have found work as a New Yorker cartoonist. And it was in part his drawings that led him to win the lounge chair design contest Dwell sponsored with Blu Dot in 2007. Have a look at his stellar work and try to get into the exhibition.
November 1, 2011
dreams of eames design report piao paper chair

Dreams of Eames

October 31, 2011
Qubique entryhall

Report from Qubique in Berlin

What makes a tradeshow cool? Location, location, location. In the case of Quibique, a furniture fair making its debut October 26th to 29th, that means a cool city (Berlin) and a cool spot in that city (the hall of the former Tempelhof airport). The iconic, now-decommissioned airport, designed and built in the roaring twenties before a Nazi-era expansion, again became a symbol of hope after WWII during the Berlin Airlift when American pilots used it to deliver food and goods to West Berliners blockaded by the Soviet army.
October 28, 2011
Aether Airstream Fullon

Aether's Airstream

Here at Dwell, we love all things Airstream, that modernist silver bullet racing toward the freedom of the open road. And though some of the best Airstream design takes the object as a mobile home, French designer Thierry Gaugain (a decades-long lieutenant of Philipe Starck) has recently reimagined it as a mobile shop, or as he puts it, "a toy chest on wheels." Gaugain was employed by the outdoor clothing brand Aether to design a kind of mobile command unit to help sell its gear. The concept is that this Airstream is the home of a wandering adventurer who travels the world and occasionally sells what he's picked up along the way. I met Gaugain here in San Francisco last week and he took me through the design.
October 27, 2011
end hay

Modern Farm Furniture

Modern Farm Furniture out of Columbus, Ohio, was one of my favorite finds at the Solar Decathlon this year. The team of Kiel Mohrman and Kyle Herlihy built the custom furniture in Ohio State's enCore design, which was a nice touch—I'm a sucker for hyperlocal design. A little web perusing brought me to their site and I found that they have a small, but incredibly affordable, line available for sale.
October 26, 2011
Toaster Mica

The Toaster Project

One of the most exciting books to come across my desk in the last while is designer Thomas Thwaites' incredible The Toaster Project: Or a Heroic Attempt to Build a Simple Electric Appliance from Scratch. In it Thwaites recounts his efforts to source and collect the materials necessary to make a toaster (and we're talking about extracting bits of mica and steel from the earth here), and then build the thing. The result is a hilarious, wonderfully wrought account of how hard it is to really make anything from scratch, much less an electronic device. I asked Thwaites a few questions about the book whilst he was in transit to the Pop!Tech conference in Camden, Maine. His answers were revealing. His book is even better.
October 24, 2011
modern River House façade in Virginia

Row House

With a modernist palette of concrete, glass, and steel, Ziger/Snead Architects constructed an ode to rowing in rural Virginia.
October 21, 2011
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