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Monday, 31 January 2011

Networked Digital Heating: Bluetooth. Green.


As cave-like as a traditional log fire may be, burning trees isn't the most convenient way of heating a room. The Mancave uses a wirelessly networked 'wet electric' system of energy efficient radiators. Linked via Bluetooth, each device can be pre-programmed to maintain a set room-temperature to within 0.1 degree for any given minute of the week.

Resembling a conventional steel design, the radiators are self contained and filled with a thermo-dynamic gel that retains heat in a more efficient way than clunky storage heaters. By only using the energy required and taking advantage of new wet electric tariffs, the system saves money and trees.

There's a Cow in my Hand Luggage!


Everyone knows the best steaks come from Argentina - or at least that's what restaurant chain Gaucho tells us. So when it came to finding a cowhide for the American black walnut flooring, I hopped on a plane to Buenos Aires to find the best.

I stumbled across a small warehouse in the wholesale leather district run by a old man called Carlos and his teenage son who did the translating. Carlos was up a ladder throwing down various hides and we found this beauty. Named in honour of the old man and flown back to the Mancave in my hand luggage.

Modernist steel coffee table frame found in Edinburgh. Restored in London with bespoke smoked glass.

Sunday, 30 January 2011

Crashing the Secret World of Interiors


Every year at the NEC designers, retailers and architects gather to rub shoulders with over 600 manufacturers and suppliers from around the world. This year, DesignTrawler crashed the party.

Some amazing finds at Interiors 2011, but the biggest was discovering the trade prices for seriously high-end kit before seriously high-end retailers add on seriously high-end margins. Nonetheless some fantastic suppliers, some of whom, like Culinary Concepts (pictured), also retail direct to the public.

Best of the London Art Fair 2011


DesignTrawler was invited by a number of galleries to a special preview of the London Art Fair last week. Always on the look out for shiny new pieces, the Zaha Hadid like steel sculptures from Russian born artist Margarita Trushina certainly tick the 'shiny and new' box. Available from the Salon Vert and also Dare to Joust galleries, all pieces are one-off with smaller examples from around £400.

Also of interest was Stephen Aldrch's gigantic and obsessively detailed hand cut collage 'Mechanism' made from old engineering journals, and of course the ever brilliant Alban from the French Art Studio.

Saturday, 22 January 2011

Give Up Bad Design For Good

 

New Year's Resolutions; flawed by design to fail miserably before January is over; and primarily the reason that for many of us, resolutions rarely ever make it to the drawing boards in the first place.

This slogan from Danish design house Bodum recently caught my attention. Like a revolutionary campaign poster, this plastic bag calls consumers to arms with an intelligent and powerful message; Give up Bad Design for Good!; a brilliant resolution for the year ahead.
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