Category Archives: design

Tweeting in ten below

85 Tour Button

Itinerary planning for a recent trip to Chicago brought me to the Around Chicago in 85 Tours blog, a genius creation of the Chicago Architecture Foundation. Employee Jennifer Lucente had accepted the challenge of taking all of the Foundation’s tours in one year, sharing the experience via her blog, Facebook page and live tweeting. Of course, being both an architecture and social media nut, I thought this was the best engagement idea since sliced bread met the toaster. So you can imagine my excitement then at meeting Jennifer on the one tour that I manage to fit into our trip.

Quickly recognizing a kindred spirit, (who else would tweet in -10 degree C weather?), I introduced myself via twitter. Some of the tidbits from our live conversation – that tours in the summer were much easier to cover than those in the winter, that 85 really is a lot of tours and that she, like most of us, walks the fine line between balancing day job and social media maven duties. I tweeted my heart out, most likely confusing KW tweeps with the constant stream of reflections on the development of the skyscraper!

Jennifer completed her mission with an open bar celebration on December 16th (what no plane ticket for me?) at the Chicago Theater. I will miss her tweets and blog updates that have certainly fed my yen for architecture. The project is also a perfect example of how to harness social media tools to create real engagement and awareness. A real person telling their very real stories, genius.

Check out the blog and the website for more, and if you are in Chicago – take a tour!

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Filed under design, talks

Meet honeysuckle.

“Courageous. Confident. Vital. A brave new color, for a brave new world. Let the bold spirit of Honeysuckle infuse you, lift you and carry you through the year. It’s a color for every day – with nothing “everyday” about it”

Meet Honeysuckle, Pantone’s 2011 Color of the Year. Said to embody the uplifting feeling of the yet to come new year, it replaces 2010’s easy going turquoise. Being a girl and a fan of the pink family, I really love and will embrace this color in 2011.  Seems like I am not the only one, Don Cherry’s infamous “pinko” comments has spawned pins and t-shirts in an eerily similar hue.

PANTONE Color of the Year 2011 can be found in the following PANTONE Color Systems:

fashion + home: 18-2120 TCX or 18-2120 TPX
fashion + home CMYK:
4 75 24 0
PLUS SERIES: 205 U (closest match)
0 86 16 0
203 101 134
Goe™ System: 26-2-4
Plastics: Q190-3-1


Filed under cool whip, design

Bon Mot

My Bon Mott shopping bag with an original drawing.

I happened upon Bon Mot by chance. A response to my tweet about a retailer that carried upside-down plant pots had identified the store as a carrier, but as I had never heard of it, I wrote down the name to investigate later.  I’d fallen in love with these particular pots at the Michelle Kaufman Smart Home on a recent trip to Chicago and have been searching for one ever since. On Tuesday, work dropped me at the Princess Cinemas. Looking across the street, there it was. (When fate and a good parking spot intertwine, you don’t mess with it.) My timing was perfect, the store had opened the day before.

Bon Mot literally means good word, but is also used to mean a clever remark or witticism. I don’t think the owners – the Jane Bond folks – could have chosen a better name. Loosely filled with interesting and design fused stuff, including my coveted pot, my small purchase quickly grew (it’s Christmas).

Some of my finds.

Hand screen-printed cotton handkerchiefs sporting vintage bikes, which I may re purpose for use as napkins as they are so lovely. They are the creation of Jon Johnson, aka Bearface, a local designer.

It was love at first glance with Serrote’s notebooks which are created in Lisbon with letterpress. Like last year, I had been seeking something unusual and beautiful for my mother-in-law (who is an artist and Portuguese). These are perfect.

“By the end of 2004, we began our search in Lisbon, Portugal, for old printery houses. The idea was to create a notebook printed in letterpress, with moveable type, like Gutenberg did. Many traditional printeries had allready closed their doors, but we found one that helped us.
Deep inside old drawers and cases (some of them allready half eatened by the woodworm), we found old lead and type ornaments, used decades ago to print invoices and business cards. – Serrote

I did remember to pick up what I had originally come in for, my aptly named Sky Planter, which I  will fill with basil and hang in the kitchen. Boskke is a New Zealand company with an “evolved gardening tag”. The jury is out regarding what my cat will do with it – pinata or landing pad – but with such a fantastic concept I’ve got to give it a go. I was also told that larger sizes may be on the way.

I love this store and will be back soon. Find them at 47 King St. N.  in Uptown Waterloo beneath the Starlight.


Filed under design, waterloo