News & Events

Made in China Homes

Monday, September 15th, 2014

 
Our global economy means many of us have difficulty finding items that are made in America, much less finding a job, but at least the home building industry is safe, right?
 
After all, shipping container architecture can only get you so far. It’s not that green, and adapting the containers into livable rooms is a hassle.
 
The problem is, shipping containers inspire a new product. Boxes that are as easy to transport and stack as shipping containers, but are originally made for people to live in, have the benefits without the problems associated with shipping container architecture.
 
Made in China houses are coming.
 
Lloyd Alter has the rest.
 




Century-Old Medical Furniture Record

Monday, September 15th, 2014

 
Now that’s a rare and complicated chair. Mark B. Firley has found a McConnell Dental Chair from around 1900. It folds, it adjusts, it hangs on the back of traveling buggies, and it scares the teeth out of the toughest homesteaders. You won’t want to miss these photographs.
 
See it in glorious color.
 




Stian Korntved Ruud: Hand Carving a Daily Spoon for a Year

Friday, September 12th, 2014

 
The Daily Spoon project by Stian Korntved Ruud shows devotion, dedication, and loving care for each item. Ruud hand carved one different spoon each day for a year to get to know wood and design intimately.
 
Wood can be a complicated subject if you want to break it down: the grain, color, hardness, and water absorption… of the same wood milled differently, of different wood types, of different parts of the same tree, of different trees of the same species growing on different terroirs; how do these qualities lend themselves to various shapes and purposes of design?
 
Rustic Hickory sample from Amish Furniture Factory
Some of Ruud’s spoons are strange; these are the wonders that a carver is forced to create when he exhausts what he thought were all his options. Yet they’re all spoons, and they all mix a familiarity together with the wonder. Human creativity turns things that are as old as the Earth into things that are as new as the individual.
 
Click to see the spoons.
 




23 Open Concept Apartment Photos

Friday, September 12th, 2014

 
Inspiration post incoming! Home Designing has a gallery of open concept apartment pictures, a whole 23 of them. Of course, they supply designer and photographer names in case there is anybody you would like to start following. Apartments, which might have more windowless walls, are great candidates for open concept design, so this is a valuable gallery.
 
Check it out.
 




Shipping Container Architecture Has Both Pros and Cons

Thursday, September 11th, 2014

 
Shipping container architecture is cool, new, and interesting, and so yes, the idea deserves a lot of discussion. Now here’s an article that doesn’t only discuss how cool and stylish a particular building is. On Jetson Green, Christine Walsh is using her head and asking readers to assess shipping container architecture for both its good attributes and its bad ones. To Walsh, I say, thanks for the hard work.
 
Read on.
 




Purposeful Hand Tool Storage Principles

Thursday, September 11th, 2014

 
Some methods of doing things seem effective because you simply haven’t sat down and thought them through. For example, how can storage systems for hand tools improve your efficiency around the woodshop? In a three-part series, Christopher Schwartz has outlined nine goals you should keep in mind when organizing your storage.
 
Give the first part a try and then find the rest.
 




Sandra Espinet Curates Art Furniture Pictures

Thursday, September 11th, 2014

 
To continue talking about the idea of useful art, let me point you to this small gallery that Sandra Espinet has gathered of unique and often painstakingly created chairs. Most of them look as durable and comfortable as they are interesting and beautiful. They’re art furniture.
 
Don’t just sit there, click.
 




This Is a Work of Art. Do Not Use.

Wednesday, September 10th, 2014

 
By Tobin Dimmitt
 
The Sou Fujimoto’s Bränden bus shelter in Krumbach, Austria has been a work of architecture since the day it was erected. It has also been functional, serving as a bus stop, land mark, and lookout.
 
Unfortunately, Krumbach had to officially “close” the staircase in the bus stop to prevent liability, although in reality they are perfectly fine with visitors climbing the stairs at their own risk. What I find interesting is the way in which they closed the stairway. The sign they erected reads, “This is a work of art. Do not enter.”
 
In other words, let’s pronounce this building a work of art to say that it is not meant to be useful or interactive.
 
Krumbach isn’t at fault in this wording. Most Western cultures place artistic value on an item in inverse proportion to its usefulness. This is why a modern day painting can cost tens of thousands of dollars, while a piece of handcrafted Amish furniture costs a couple hundred to a couple thousand. Lack of function is what separates art from craft, or art from design… but more importantly, it’s because somebody said so.
 
Whoever that was.
 
Source on the Bränden bus stop at Dezeen
 




Two-Baby Nursery Planning

Wednesday, September 10th, 2014

 
Here is a neat post on Michelle Smith’s thinking process as she designs her new nursery. The Iron and Twine blogger decided to share her process as a guest at the Handmade Home. After defining exactly what the room in question has and what it needs, Michelle is ready to shop for solutions.
 
Click to see what she came up with.
 




Chicago Mod House Tour

Wednesday, September 10th, 2014

 
It’s a little mod, a little 20th century, but at the same time very contemporary. That’s Robyn and Drew’s Chicago graystone apartment, which reflects Robyn’s well-developed taste for contemporary art. The couple likes their straight lines and squared edges, but there’s more: the colors are divine.
 
Tour it at Apartment Therapy.