Design Lesson

‘Memento Mori’ is a Spooky Take on Seizing the Day

Memento mori is Latin for “remember, you must die.” It is a classification for a type of jewelry popular in the late sixteenth through the seventeenth centuries but still being produced today. It is not to be confused with mourning … Continue reading

A Brief History of the Super Soaker®

Summer officially ends this month, so it seems appropriate to pay tribute in this issue to one of the greatest (if not the greatest) water toys invented. With one squirt you can totally drench your friend, relative, or enemy while … Continue reading

Plastic Flamingo

Is it kitsch, tacky, or a classic? In her book Refuge: An Unnatural History of Family and Place, nature writer Terry Tempest Williams declared that the plastic pink flamingo was “our unnatural link to the natural world.” When designer and … Continue reading

Thonet No. 14 Chair

You have most likely sat in the No. 14 chair. It’s simple but elegant, and it easily blends with most interiors. This café chair is an icon and is considered to be one of the most successful mass-produced products in … Continue reading

Montblanc Meisterstück

My father, who worked in real estate, always had a gold Cross pen in his left shirt pocket. I learned at a young age that the type of pen you carry makes a statement. Like most kids in the ’80s … Continue reading

Vermelha Chair

“The streets of São Paulo are a sort of laboratory for our designs. Whenever we need inspiration, we rely on the chaos and beauty of the city we live in,” explained Fernando and Humberto Campana, brothers and design partners. The … Continue reading

Sailor’s Valentines

  It’s a romantic tale: lovesick sailors, away for months or some-times years on whaling and merchant voyages, collected shells on tropical islands and spent hours assembling elaborate shellwork mosaics to bring back to their sweethearts. The truth is that … Continue reading

The Erector Set

It is known as the toy that saved Christmas. Magician and recent Yale graduate Alfred Carlton Gilbert was commuting to New York to sell his magic kits when he became mesmerized by the network of steel girders erected to electrify … Continue reading