Latest Articles in Furniture & Products

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BDDW's Handmade Record Players

When Tyler Hays founded BDDW more than a decade ago, the company wore many hats: depending on the project, it might be a design-build construction company, a recording studio, an architecture firm, or a furniture business. Over time Hays narrowed BDDW's focus down to furniture—"that's the scale I prefer to work in," he says—but he's kept his own interests remarkably broad. "I've got literally fifty hobbies," he told me over the phone, when I called to chat about one of his sideline projects: making exquisite, and exquisitely expensive, custom record players and speakers for audiophiles, under the name Phila Audio Corporation.   Hays defines 'audiophile' as "a person who likes to spend too much money on stupid audio equipment," and he counts himself among them. He's been making high-end, handmade audio equipment since college, but now that he's got a fabrication shop, he makes every part of every piece of equipment, down to the bearings, excluding the motor and stylus on the record players and the drivers on the speakers.
August 24, 2010
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Down-to-Earth Design Online

I recently happened upon the website of Pedlars, a family-run design shop based in rural Scotland. Run by the husband-and-wife team of Charlie and Caroline Gladstone, the company started out as a mail-order children's clothing company and has since expanded into housewares—and into several brick-and-mortar shops, a rental house decked out with Pedlar's goods (all for sale), and a thriving online shop. I love their down-to-earth aesthetic mix: industrial bookcases, vintage French school maps, enamelware, wooden drying racks, 'wellie' holders. On my wish list:
August 23, 2010
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Friday Finds 8.20.2010

This week we've got gilded coffins, adorable talking shells, ruminations on the history of computer iconography, sustainable furniture finds, and more. Take a look.
August 20, 2010
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The Future of Solar?

The Brooklyn–based start-up SMIT (Sustainably Minded Interactive Technology) was formed in 2005 by the brother and sister team of Samuel and Teresita Cochran. Their goal: to invent a hybrid new approach to solar and wind power. Their Solar Ivy—flexible photovoltaic 'leaves' made of sheets of recyclable polyethylene—is a modular, ivy-like system that can be used on the sides of buildings, to capture the sunlight much like plants do. As the 'ivy' flutters and shifts in the wind, it converts solar energy into electricity.
August 18, 2010
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Inside the Herman Miller Headquarters

As part of our ongoing feature The Full Spectrum, a video series that focuses on color theory, we were invited to get a personal tour of the famed Herman Miller headquarters in Holland, Michigan. Encompassing several buildings and set amidst bucolic hills and fields of corn, Herman Miller is a quintessentially American company dedicated to modern design, sustainability, and social responsibility. Over the course of two days, we got an insider's look at their manufacturing facilities, testing areas, showrooms and—most exciting of all—their amazing library of archives. Here we share some snapshots from our trip, but stay tuned for our third and final video in which we'll delve into greater detail about color, materials, and Herman Miller's legacy of modern furniture design.  
August 18, 2010
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Another Country Launches

Another Country is a new furniture company owned by Paul de Zwart, the founding publisher of Wallpaper magazine. The pieces are produced by hand in a small workshop in Dorset, England, made of solid oak and finished with an oil wax. I'm quite smitten with the chunky, elegant, strenuously simple designs.
August 18, 2010
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Factory Direct

Ask anybody who has held so much as a bud vase from Heath Ceramics about the pottery’s charms, and you’re likely to encounter the kind of adoration reserved for treasured family heirlooms. So great is the ubiquitous enthusiasm for Heath that one is left wondering if something more than pigment is baked into its signature glazes. Its popularity may stem from its timeless, unfussy quality—–a Heath piece looks equally at home alongside decor of any epoch. But more likely it is due to the fact that in an era dominated by the rise of machines, this small company has honed a homespun, handcrafted approach to stoneware that’s tangible in each tile, serving bowl, and pitcher that comes out of its Sausalito, California, kilns.
August 17, 2010
Heath Ceramics Winter Collection

Heath Ceramics' Winter Collection

Though it's only August, holiday gear is already on its way (the New York International Gift Fair kicked off August 14). What's caught our eye is Heath Ceramics' new Winter 2010 collection—and its bold red glazes.
August 16, 2010
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James Dyson Award Finalists

The James Dyson Award, which "seeks to single out the best in problem-solving student design," recently announced their regional finalists, selected from over 500 submission entries. The eventual international grand prize winner—announced October 5—will receive more than $15,000, with another $15,000 going to the student’s university department. Allison Arieff, Dwell's former editor-in-chief, and Amelia Amon selected the ten U.S. finalists, which range from inventions that put an end to texting-while-driving to an entire park designed for children with disabilities. The inventors of the U.S. National winner—a wheel that turns a regular bike into a smart, electric hybrid—will get to visit Dyson laboratories in the UK to participate in a workshop run by Dyson engineers.
August 13, 2010