Monday, November 30, 2009

Gallery: Artist Adam Belt

I've had the pleasure of knowing Adam Belt and his graphic designer wife, Wendy since my days in design school. This uber-talented couple now lives in picturesque Carlsbad (a stone's throw away from San Diego), where they live with their colorful keep (daughter: Ruby, dog:Violet).  I've been amazed by Adam's work and its evolution throughout the years and have been waiting for an opportunity to showcase it (you can currently find it displayed at the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego). Adam was kind enough the take the time to answer a few questions about him, his work, and art in general.

(above: Pari Radio Telescopes, 2008 © Adam Belt )

Girl Of All Work: Your work seems to juxtapose both natural and man-made materials. We see concrete blocks and melted ice, organic swirls of blue watercolor with satellites as the negative shape. What is it about the natural vs. unnatural forms that attract you?

Adam Belt: I think what draws me in is the point of meeting and contact. When you look at the expansive landscape of the desert southwest, for example, the topographical features meander and flow into each other stretching far into the horizon. Points of contrast highlight the expanse giving you a tangible sense of the scale and a heightened awareness of the dynamic natural forms. Dams for instance, are an abrupt intervention; graceful arch dams like Hoover or Glen Canyon punctuate the landscape. The engineered forms contrast the rugged terrain and the resulting barrier becomes point of focus, interest, and tension

G: How has your approach changed as you've matured as an artist?
A:Through the process of failure and success I have had to reassert my focus on what my work means to me and why I create art. In terms of approach specifically I work on those projects, which are particularly poignant, the ones I need to make as well as works I know I would regret not making. These may seem like obvious criteria, but like all professions art can quickly pull you away from why you became an artist leaving you with nothing but careerism and empty strategies to get to the next level. I do not want the sum of my artistic production to be a bunch of contemporary art looking stuff.

(above: Glen Canyon Dam Detail, 2004 © Adam Belt )

G: I know that your wife, Wendy, is a graphic designer. Does what she do influence your work, if at all?
A: Her process of creating through the computer has opened that up for me as a meaningful tool of production. Also, the persistence of her work ethic is something that I have admired and learned from.

G: A lot of people don't "get" fine art. What would you have to say to them?
A: I believe the main difficulty is the disparity in expectations. If you are looking for beauty and a display of skill and an extensive amount of time to complete the work you are looking at, you may be disappointed in the contemporary art context where those elements are not cherished in relationship to the gauge of a works success. What I recommend to people, and this is from my own experience as a person who was not raised in an art background, is that you experience the work as it is rather than what you perceive it to be lacking. Also, the experience many people have is of seeing particular works that resonate with them on a profound level.  This experience opens the possibility of and desire for further investigation and discovery. And finally, it is important to remember that contemporary art, most often, is not a passive experience, it requires some commitment from the viewer and that is why the experience can be that much more enriching.

(above: Drift, 2008 © Adam Belt)

G: Where would your dream artist's retreat be located?
A: Maybe on a house boat in Lake Powell. Although the lake is man-made and has flooded a spectacular environment, the lake affords the visitor endless opportunities for exploration and the blue water amidst the sandstone cliffs is as beautiful a location as I have ever seen. Not to mention the silence in the evening and the stargazing.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Spotlight: We're in the Press!

If you're a regular reader, you've probably noticed a drop off in blog posts. That's because our studio has been pretty busy with filling holiday orders and designing new products for next season. It's been craaaaaazy! But in the middle of all this, we've had some pretty cool things happen around here. Both our chef set page flags and our chapter journals have recently caught the media's attention. We're excited to have the flags in both Instyle and Rachel Ray Online and the chapter journals in Lucky Magazine. Okay, back to work!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Spotlight: Monster Drawing Rally!

To be held this Sunday (November 8) from 2-7pm in my neck of the woods: Eagle Rock, CA! Some pretty cool artists will be drawing simultaneously in 1 hour shifts to live music and selling their creations for $75. Proceeds go to support Outpost for Contemporary Art, a non-profit organization designed to bring artists and communities together. I'm looking forward to catching Ruby Osorio at the venue along with a whole roster of L.A. artists, whose credentials are far from shabby. Admission is a $10 donation. Click here for more info.

(clockwise starting from left: detail of artwork from Sarejo Freiden, Ruby Osorio, and Fumiko Amano)

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Prêt-à-Porter: Fade to Grey

Socks and hosiery seem to be heading in an artful direction, grey-ward. Take a look at these new offerings from some avant-garde designers. Each uses faint grey, in coordination with other colors and patterns, to create highly stylized and inventive legwear.

(clockwise starting from left, all via a great mix of polished and street-wear in tights from Wunderkindtie-dye leggings from Future Classics are a retro statement with a modern slant; socks from Tsumori Chisato are printed with a whimsical grey moonscape)

Friday, October 30, 2009

Curiosities: Roomba Art

Talk about the combination of 2 of my favorite things: cleanliness and art.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Found Objects: Color Me Happy

Longing for some quality coloring time? Reach for these wonderful handmade crayons. Their playful shape and friendly faces make for instant fun. The nontoxic materials that go into making them are a bonus.

 (pictures via

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Prêt-à-Porter: Long Live Summer

When fall arrives each year, I always feel a little resigned in spirit.  Resigned to dim-colored clothing, and to growing increasingly (with the onset of colder weather) bulkier in shape as I pile on the layers.  Putting the happy, light summer dresses away feels like putting away the happier, sunnier me 'til spring.  But it's not all depressing, I suppose.  Fall and winter also mean greater structure.  Dress shirts and sleek pants and boxy coats.  Minimalism and black and white can be a welcome break from the flirtiness of summer dressing.

(above: a look from the Alberta Ferreti Spring 2010 collection, paired with navy wide-leg pants from Barneys New York and a Lutz &Patmos cream-colored cardigan. Pictures via and

But this fall, I'm just not ready to let go of summer quite yet.  So here's a suggestion, even for those who have to dress for the office every day.  Why not prolong summer by wearing warm weather pieces all throughout the fall (and maybe the winter, too, if you love summer like I do)?  Float innumerable light layers on top of each other: a bare, wispy blouse over a bare, wispy dress over another wispy dress, capped by a thick sweater or a suit jacket in the office.  When it's particularly cold, I slip on a close-fitting turtleneck as a base layer or add pants under the dresses.  Another idea: Tuck the ends of a gossamer scarf into the waist of your dark pencil skirt to combine a little feminine with the conservative.  Instantly, you've got a multicolored look with personality that's ready for work.  I also have a lot of fun wrapping delicate scarves around my torso to create a silky, strapless top under a jacket or cardigan.  And finally, summer tunics and caftans can have an interesting life in autumn either paired with a coat of similar length and dark tights (for an elongating look), or belted and brought up short as a loose blouse with great volume.  Wear them with a pair of trousers or a long skirt, and you'll have the perfect mix of summer and fall.

(above: a look from the A.F. Vandervorst Spring 2010 Collection, paired with a fitted brown jersey skirt from Rick Owens Lilies and a camel-colored wrap coat from The Row. Images via and

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Curiosities: Claudia Hapeman Masks

With Halloween around the bend, these beautiful Venetian-inspired masks would be a breath of fresh air amidst all the tired witches, goblins, and sexy nurses/cats/barmaids. Each mask is created with quality materials (think Swarovski crystals and gold leaf) by renowned artist Claudia Hapeman. I love her extravagant use of lush feathers and sequins, which makes each piece an impressive piece of art. After Halloween, prop up your mask on a bookshelf or a bedroom vanity to add a dramatic flair to your room.

(photos via

Monday, October 26, 2009

Eatables: The Best Custard a savory one.  No kidding.  Last week, a dear friend and I went to "Per Se," Thomas Keller's New York establishment, for a possibly once-in-our-lifetime dinner, and that was the new truth I learned.  Sadly, some of the courses in the chef's tasting menu that were meant for knock-out effect were befuddling (I didn't really understand the appeal of a slab of duck breast with no distinctive flavors developed, followed by an equally nondistinctive slab of lamb of almost the same texture), but a few courses were bright stars.  My favorite of the evening was the "Oysters and Pearls," a "sabayon" (in this case, a savory custard sauce) covering pearl tapioca, island creek oysters, and sterling white sturgeon caviar.  Tasting how the wonder and richness of the custard enhanced the slippery, dimpled textures of the tapioca, oysters, and caviar, I suddenly thought that a savory sabayon might transform even the most familiar food into small miracles.  A few sites offer some delicious guidance on the making of:

Friday, October 23, 2009

Found Objects: Hub man

What a fun and streamlined way to add more USB ports to your computer. Hub Man comes with 4 USB 2.0 hi-speed ports and a cute little smile. Retails for $28.95 and is available here

(photo via

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Curiosities: Making of a Dog

Last Saturday, I spent an afternoon at Gallery Hanahou in Soho, NYC, making a hand-sewn mechanical dog.  A small group made up of designers and inexperienced people like me gathered around a long table in the gallery space and, surrounded by the exhibited artwork of Ossu Shugeibu, a Japanese crafting club, we set about "skinning" the poor furry toy dogs whose moving skeletons would serve as the foundation for our own creations.   This sounds awful but is actually a terrific way to bypass the daunting gadgetry challenges of creating a mechanical toy and just move into the creative aesthetics of the process.  By the end of the workshop, the group of us (some of whom had truly limited sewing skills) had turned out an eclectic array of dogs and dog hybrids with parti-colored appendages (a few proudly bore limbs constructed of men's plaid boxer shorts).   We marched them down to the front of the gallery building and took them for a short walk on the street.  You can click here for more pictures (photos via Gallery Hanahou).

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Bookmarked: Masterpiece Comics

I've never envisioned Bronte quite like this! A tongue-in-cheek re-visioning of some of our greatest classics in this comic book compilation available at Drawn and Quarterly (a fantastic name, don't you think?). You can get a preview of "The Crypt of Bronte" on their site.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Found Objects: Heath Ceramics

Beautiful ceramics, glassware, and tiles by Heath Ceramics, one of the few remaining mid-century American potteries in existence today. Their team of 40 craftsmen produce these amazing pieces on their premises in Sausalito, California. I love the contrast between the warmth of the materials and the clean lines and forms. Their price points don't make them completely unattainable, especially if you think of them as functional art pieces.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Prêt-à-Porter: Avian Beauty

An odd and interesting sighting at Bloomingdales the other day: a woman in a print ad whose eyes looked ready to take flight. They were delicately delineated in bright, colorful featherlike lashes, which were so whimsically birdlike that they drew me in. I spent the next twenty minutes at the Shu Uemura makeup station, looking at the advertised "Tokyo Lash Bar." Sitting in little plastic cases were carefully crafted normal-looking false lashes next to lashes that could never in anyone's imagination be considered anything less than psychedelic costuming for the eyes! Neon colors in feathery sweeps and round layered swoops lay at rest in their boxes, waiting to come to life, i suppose, as soon as a bold wearer comes ready to experiment (and plunk down the money--prices range from under $20 to near $80). I wouldn't normally have the nerve to go near them, but since Halloween is nearly here, perhaps the brown feather lashes.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Curiosities: Name My Tune

So, you're sitting in traffic and a fragment of a melody pops into your head. You don't remember what the song is, but you know, it goes like this: Dah. Dum. Dum. Dah! You call your friends singing that little phrase. You get nothing, except maybe aggravation and a suggestion to focus on your driving. That's where Name My Tune comes in handy!  You can jump on this website, record your little diddy and send it out to the masses for tune recognition (using something as simple as your built in mic). You'll get emailed suggestions of tunes and artists. An invaluable resource to cure that it's-at-the-tip-of-my-tongue syndrome.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Bookmarked: Thumbwar by John Hersey

I have a soft spot for thumb wars. My significant other and I played it endlessly in the beginning of our relationship (I wanted to win. He—I found out later—just wanted to hold my hand :) This great handmade book by John Hersey is a fun tribute to this ancient form of "warfare." Go to his Etsty store and get a brief education on how thumb wrestling came to be (e.g. brought to the West by Marco Polo and used to determine who was going to sleep with the most popular concubine?!) Letter-pressed and bound with either laser cut plywood or chipboard. 100 editions total.


Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Found Objects: More Than Skin Deep

If you've never heard of Liz Earle "Naturally Active Skincare" products, here's a quick introduction: It's a British skin care line focused on using high-quality, natural ingredients and dedicated to preserving the environment. Nowadays, with so many companies ostensibly devoting themselves to "greener" practices, this sort of promise is becoming a little trite. But with an in-house ethnobotanist and a carefully thought-out plan to reduce environmental impact, the people behind Liz Earle really try hard to make good on their promise while delivering the best product for your money. And I have to say, it's a really excellent product. Two winters ago, the "Superskin Concentrate," loaded with a lavish combination of plant oils, saved my skin from a dry and crackly fate. Just smelling the wonderful lavender essential oil in it (sourced from atop Mount Ventoux, France--yes, the Mount Ventoux that's a pain for Tour de France riders to summit) is soothing. Try the "Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser," a "Natural Health Beauty Awards" winner for three years running. Questions about specific skin benefits of the ingredients used? Check out the helpful "A-Z" glossary of natural ingredients on the company website.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Featured Retailer: Papelaria Interview

When I first started Girl Of All Work, I'd dreamed of having our products go international. Now you can find our products in Chile! We were so excited when we met Antonia Risopatron, proprietress of Papelaria, a franchise of two beautiful, upscale stationery stores in Chile—one in Santiago, and the other in Parque Arauco. I was struck by the black modern storefront and just the lovely array of colors and textures carefully composed in both stores. We were honored to be in the midst of such great company! Antonia was kind enough to answer a few questions we had for her from starting her own business to what was on her bookshelf.

Girl Of All Work: What inspired you to open your store? How did you come up with the name?
Antonia : It was a long dream for me. I've always loved papers. Paper products are a delight for me. That's why I finally decided to open a store. My friends also encouraged me to do this. In Chile, there is no other stationery store, out of Papelaria. The name is similar to the word "papelaría," which means papery in Spanish, but it sounds different and is easier to remember.

G: When did you open your doors?
A: We opened our first store exactly 2 years ago, in August 2007

G: What are you reading right now?
A: I am reading a book about the life of Michel Angelo Buonarroti and The Agony and the Ecstasy by Irving Stone.

G:Where have you travelled recently?
A: To New York last May. I really enjoy the city, it's full of life.

G: If you weren't doing this, what do you think you'd be doing?
A: Really, I am so happy with Papelaria, that I haven't thought of anything else to do!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Found Objects: Penguin Books Tea Towels

How fun are these?! Now you can turn your kitchen into a library of sorts. Too bad they don't have excerpts from the books on the other side; it would make drying dishes a bit more entertaining. Available here.

(photos via

Friday, October 9, 2009

Gallery: Tessa Farmer

As I stared and stared at artist Tessa's Farmer's exhibit at the Spencer Brownstone Gallery in NYC last winter, I knew my world had been changed. It wasn't just the gruesomeness of her materials that made an impression, it was the completeness of her vision--so carefully realized and beautifully detailed. Farmer is a gifted creator of dark fantasy worlds. Her installations feature aggressive fairies wielding spears against insects and planting themselves on hapless dogs and birds (among other familiar animals). That's not all. The fairies, it turns out, are each so miniature that, peering at them with the unaided human eye, you can hardly see all there is to see. Not only that, but, well, they're composed of dead insects. And the dogs and birds they perch on are real, dead dogs and birds. But the most interesting thing about her installations is that these details become less important, the more that you look at her work. It's not every day that someone creates whole worlds. Go for the shock factor; stay to marvel at her talent. Farmer's work will be showing, along with that of other artists, at the State Hermitage Museum, in the Winter Palace in St. Petersburg, Russia, from October 25 through January 17, 2010. an expanded version of the same exhibition will open at the Saatchi Gallery in London in June 2010.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Found Objects: Keybags

Whoa. Talk about taking your work with you. Not quite sure how heavy these bags are, but they're bound to be a walking conversation piece. Priced around 130-145 Euros (approximately, $192-$212) and made from 393 randomly assigned computer keyboard keys. 

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Eatables: Leaf Pie Nirvana

It IS possible to taste heaven. If your tastes run to the simple but well-made, then the "West Leaf Pie" is for you. Is it a pie? No. It's just the best part of a pie (for me, at least): layered, leaf-shaped pastry that's a dream of what the airiest pie crust would taste like if it came lightly showered with sugar granules. Ahhh!!! I once ate 6 pieces in one sitting. And even though my stomach mildly rebelled against so much buttery pastry, I could barely restrain my hands from reaching for piece #7. Sold at Takashimaya, a little jewel of a Japanese department store located in Midtown New York City, the "Leaf Pie" is the best part of the afternoon tea service provided in the Takashimaya "Teabox Restaurant." And like so many beloved things at Takashimaya, it's still a little-known secret of sorts.

(photo via Takashimaya)

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Beautiful Bargains: Cool Water

I've always had a weakness for stuff that was a bit army-hip. The colors and construction of these civilian water canteens definitely reference their more serious counterparts... but with a sophisticated twist. Now on sale from $90 down to $60 for most pouches. Flasks will run you 30+ and up (also on sale).

Prêt-à-Porter: The Bigger, the Tougher, the Better

For years, costume jewelry has tended towards the extravagant. Remember a couple of years back, when brooches were all the rage? Huge suckers, plastered with kick-ass imitation gems and faux gold touches. I don't think big, statement jewelry has ever gone away. But now it seems to be bigger than ever, and with a tougher, street-influenced vibe (as though daring us to denounce its wearer for showiness). It's a little hard to imagine who--besides the 20-something rocker-chic set--might be able to work this look into their typical ensemble. But the prospect of seeing young office professionals and stay-at-home moms give it a try makes me a little giddy with excitement. (Street) fashion for all!

(top grouping/left to right: earrings by Fallon and a choker by Bottega Veneta
bottom grouping / left to right: necklace by Bottega Veneta and a necklace by Burberry)

Friday, October 2, 2009

Curiosities: Smarin

I have never coveted pillows to the degree that I covet these amazing creations by Smarin. They're aptly named "living stones" because they simply invite interaction. I was also smitten with their raindrop garden furniture that looks like it lights up at night. Check on their website for U.S. retailers. So many fantastic and creative designs. I'm floored.

(photo via Smarin)

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Spotlight: Calling All Dawns Album

It's nice to flex my non-stationery design muscles every now, and in this case, it came in the form of a CD design for composer Christopher Tin's Calling All Dawns, a beautiful album that defies a genre classification but would likely be categorized as "world music." It consists of 12 songs/ 12 languages / 3 parts (day, night, dawn). With such Grammy nominees and winners like Frederica con Stade and the Soweto Gospel Choir gracing this album, it's a deeply moving listening experience. Below is the cover art and some miniaturized versions of the layouts I designed for the album. And yes, I did use Stefan Hattenbach's typeface Delicato for the text. Album becomes available today!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Found Objects: Bold & Noble

It's been a really tough week, and it's barely begun! We're in the process of moving our studio and getting organized again has been wearing on everyone. So, we took a mini break one afternoon and decided to cruise around on the internet for some great wall art for our new space. Great typography always perks us up, and we found it at Bold and Noble. I especially like the robot assembled from letterforms. These posters would work well anywhere from a kid's room to a home office.

(images from Bold and Noble)

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Curiosities: Yummy Colors

Every year, during catalogue time, I'm faced with the daunting task of having to name product colors. It can be either a fun exercise or an agonizing process, and the funny thing is, I'm not quite sure if anyone really notices!  But, in my experience, stationery lovers tend to notice the little details, and I wouldn't feel quite right about sending off my creation into the world without a proper color assignation. If I think my task is challenging, I can't imagine what the creative teams for paint manufacturers must face during new color launches. I popped onto Behr and Valspar websites the other night, browsing for new wall paint and saw some really creative solutions centered around food.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Found Objects: Trash Ties for Your Hair

I think "Trash Ties" by designer Heather Bailey are an ingenious way to hold your hair in place. Available in different colors and lengths, they're a little edgier than ribbons and give you so many different styling options.  I'm still mulling over color choices here, but as soon as I make up my mind, I'll be sporting these little accessories!

(photo via

Friday, September 25, 2009

Gallery: The Art of Tea

I love autumn. It's my favorite season, and when the weather turns chill, you'll usually find my hands wrapped around a mug of tea. There's a beauty in the ritual of watching leaves unfurl in a steaming cup.
Now through November 29th, the Fowler Museum at UCLA is running an exhibit on the art of tea, featuring its medicinal origins in China to its key role in the development of the British Empire. And, of course, in the the midst of all that, you'll also get to see some beautiful patterns and dainty tea ware.

I'm sure after your tour, you'll probably have that itch to acquire some of your own tea ware. Check out these great options. I love the beautiful colors of the ceramic japanese teacup, the incredibly decorative moroccan tea glass, and the impressive tea-stain pattern cup (the pattern becomes more pronounced with use):

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Prêt-à-Porter: Cozy Architecture for the Body

Fall's officially here, and it's almost time to break out all the cozy sweaters that we've put away since springtime! Feels sort of painful, though, to see the bright cheerful colors of summer replaced by drab greys, browns and blacks. Not only that, but it always seems like cool-weather clothing mopes about in the same basic shapes: you've got your crewneck, your turtleneck, your cardigan, your heavier cardigan, and on and on. If it weren't for one beacon of creativity in all this monotony, it'd be easy to sink into sweatery ubiquity. That beacon is Tom Scott. A knitter and crocheter since he was a small tyke, Scott invents the most interesting draped and architectural shapes in knitwear I've ever seen—and it's all extremely wearable (and uplifting). If you can imagine it, he's likely done it. The materials he uses are exquisitely soft and fine, so you'll pay a pretty penny. But if you're willing to save up for it, owning a beautiful and rare piece of knit artwear that you'll reach for time and again, and supporting the artistic efforts of independent-minded small designers, is worth the investment.

(photos via

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Eatables: The Grateful Palate

For all you bacon lovers out there: yes, there is a bacon of the month club. Not only do you get bacon every month, but you also get a pig ballpoint pen and a rubber toy pig (that last one is a real draw for me). Check out the site for other porky finds like bacon popcorn and toilet paper (real mixed feelings on this one)!


Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Gallery: The First Day of Autumn...

Artist: Ed Ruscha
(via New York Times, Op Ed)

Found Objects: Outdoor Décor

Now that I'm moving to a place with actual backyardage (however minimal) and some balcony space, it's fun to be looking at some cool options that would complement a modern exterior. I love the statement that these wall tile planters make. The contrast of strong graphic shapes with organic plant matter create such a dramatic gesture:

These beautiful lighted planters work well anywhere. They come in assorted colors, but to me, the white lights give it just that touch of sophistication along with the quirk.

And this bird bath is clearly only meant for the most discriminating of your feathered guests!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Found Objects: Shadow Play

One of my favorite movies would have to be "To Live." It's a jewel of a movie set during the height of the Cultural Revolution in China—when luxuries were discarded in favor of what was perceived as a more equal society. Much of the movie features beautiful shadow puppetry, known as "shadow play" and the constant struggle to justify their existence.  Made traditionally of leather and controlled by wooden posts, these puppets were first conceived during the Han Dynasty as a way to console a grieving emperor once his concubine passed of an illness. They were his court's creative solution to the emperor's edict to bring her back to life. I've always been impressed by the level of detail found in these beautiful puppets, and how both light and shadow breathe life into them. If you can find a place that performs shadow puppetry on Chinese "Moon Day" (Oct. 2), it'd be a magical way to celebrate.

(photos via and

Friday, September 18, 2009

Beautiful Bargains: Eco-Friendly Office Chairs

It's hard to find a nice looking, reasonably-priced task chair that doesn't scream boring (or designer knock off). I'm not a big fan of black in a home office setting, since it's such a dominating YOU-ARE-WORKING sort of color. Luckily, there are some good options now that are easy on the eyes, the environment, and your wallet. Setu ($579), the newest addition to the Herman Miller line, comes in a light graphite (and other colors) and is definitely my top choice in terms of aesthetics. If you're looking for a pop of primary color, look toward Steelcase's Uno, now on sale for $309. I also noticed that Herman Miller has invaded...Costco! The Caper chair can be found there for $329 (membership required, of course).

(clockwise starting from top: Setu, Caper, Uno)

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Eatables: The Chocolate Room

Sometimes, at the end of a long, hard day (or even at the beginning of one!), I feel like the only thing that can keep me going is chocolate! What I mean is the real thing. The stuff that's a blend of deep dark chocolatey goodness with just the right touch of sweetness, and that makes me feel like I'm melting in a pool of momentary happiness no matter how stressed out I'm feeling. The last time I was in chocolate heaven was when I visited "The Chocolate Room" in Brooklyn. Their famous chocolate layer cake is simultaneously one of the lightest and deepest chocolate desserts I've ever had (ethereal cake layers, sumptuous chocolate frosting that isn't the over-sugary topping some bakeries serve up). But what makes me smile most is a cup of hot chocolate with some of their deliciously pudgy homemade marshmallows. Drinking it slowly on my last visit, I thought, this is what it would feel like to get a hug from the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man. (Cue satisfied sigh) You can get your hug, too, with a simple online order--instead of trekking all the way over to Brooklyn like I did!

(photos via The Chocolate Room)