School Portraits

American documentary photographer Eliot Elisofon took these striking portraits of female students at a Protestant secondary school in Mbandaka, Congo, in 1972. I love the mix of hairstyles – these ladies had an amazing sense of style.

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Zeren Badar

The Accident Series is a multimedia art project by Turkish artist Zeren Badar that draws from the western art canon with a cheeky sense of humour.

“The idea is old masters meet with pop art and found objects. I create 3D collages and photograph them. I destroy classic paintings and I make them my own”

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Red Cap Cards

I don’t usually buy cards because I prefer to make them myself, but I would definitely break that rule for Red Cap Cards. Founded by Hal Mertz and Carrie Gifford, Red Cap Cards:

“creates a platform for emerging artists to reach a broad audience, fitting art into the every-day. Thoughtfully curated, each illustrator is hand-selected for their notable work and achievements in children’s book illustration, animation, design and modern art. Each illustrator offers a unique perspective, and is seen as a storyteller with a visual story to tell.”

Some notable illustrators who have contributed designs are Jon Klassen, Lizzy Stewart, Becca Stadtlander, Chris Sasaki and Yelena Bryksenkova.

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They have recently released a foil collection that is luxurious and beautiful.

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Dark Packaging

A lot of packaging designers fall down the trap of using bright colours, loud typography and patterns to draw customers attention. Don’t get me wrong, bold designs when done well can work really beautifully, but today I wanted to showcase the dark and moody packaging design that I think draws attention without shouting it from the shelves.

Coco de Mer is a London-based company that specialises in high-end erotica products. Williams Murray Hamm was tasked with creating the packaging design for Coco De Mer’s range of toys, oils, lubricants and candles as well as shopping bags and brochures.

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Their ‘Pleasure Collection’ packaging draws from British history’s grand dames of seduction. The ladies: Nell Gwynne, Georgiana the Duchess of Devonshire and Catherine Howard, each known for different indiscretions of sexual nature.

“Williams Murray Hamm worked with the theme of ‘exploration & discovery’ when developing The Pleasure Collection – the idea of encountering the unexpected. The packaging is a rich amber brown, elegant in its simplicity and featuring only the company logo, name and a small, seductive die cut “peep-hole.” The peep-hole teases the viewer, showing a glimpse of a nude body or a flirtatious eye. The full reveal comes when the packaging is full opened to reveal an erotic print of one of the grand dames of seduction.”

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Stumptown Cold Brew Coffee have refreshed their old identity with a new CI and packaging designed by Chandelarrow Design Co.

“Using earthy colours, like brown, burnt orange, and tan, obviously harmonious hues to associate with the rich and chocolatey colour of coffee, but it also is a nod to the remote places where some of the best coffee beans are sourced. There are two main fonts used, a serif text that is paired with a slightly sloped cursive, which both appear on the main oval label. The packages are simple, giving off a small-town vibe.”

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Old Standard Moonshine’s fabric bottle label created by Chad Michael Studio is a luxurious combination of dark midnight blue and gold script typography.

“The fabric has slight fraying at the top and bottom, and along with the batch number written on the back, this clearly tells the consumer that each bottle of whiskey is one-of-a-kind. Each fabric label is a rich, navy blue, with gritty gold text covering it. The custom fonts have distinct qualities that complement each other. One is a basic all-caps sans serif and the other an elegant, more traditional typeface for the brand name, with swirls and playful elements that blend well with the small graphics and accents on the label. A white Old Town Distilling stamp is printed on the front, highlighting the simple, small business ethics that Old Standard Moonshine values.”

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Last, but not least, is the packaging design for whisky and cola concentrate Cola Maison available from Old Faithful Shop. The medicinal bottles paired with the metallic detailing of the label make it a very alluring looking concoction.

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Sport Luxe

I have built up quite a reputation amongst my friends for wearing sportswear (*cough* leggings) as my daily uniform. I have no misunderstanding that leggings are pretty much form-fitting tracksuit pants, in fact there is a debate about whether they can even be counted as pants, but I love them. I’m a pretty active person so being comfortable and (hopefully) presentable is my goal most days. I definitely don’t get it right most of the time.

Thankfully in recent years the design of sportswear has become a lot more fashion-orientated, making the integration of sportswear items into daily life a lot less cringe-worthy. So with that in mind, I’ve rounded up some items that I think hit the spot in terms of wearability, comfort and fashion.

Uniqlo is a great band for staple wardrobe items. Their Spring 2015 collection is a good example of sophisticated activewear.

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Oysho Gymwear Studio’s Spring 2015 collection is ballet-inspired so I am sold.

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Outdoor Voices is a brand that “take(s) it as a given that activewear must perform, but we see it as a virtue that our clothing also looks good and fits well”. That is a philosophy I can definitely get behind.

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Ok this one is a bit of a cheat, because it is definitely only for swimwear and not regular wear. But I thought it was too nice not to mention. Cynthia Rowley’s latest surf and swim collection is both flattering and functional. Her wetsuit designs are clean and beautiful, something that is rather uncommon with this type of clothing. Take a look.

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Bolden Ceramics

I’ve been following the work of Scottish illustrator Jen Collins for a couple of years now. Her work has consistently featured as a preferred choice for my desktop background. She creates wonderful  illustrations – from the delightfully macabre, to the botanical and heartfelt.

In 2013, she began to delve into ceramics as a way to apply her illustrative style in a more tangible and hand crafted way. The result is Bolden Ceramics, a small online space that sells her lovely ceramic sculptures and vessels. I highly recommend a visit.

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Casa Meztitla

Located at the foot of Tepozteco mountain in Mexico and surrounded by a natural reserve, Casa Meztitla is a beautiful stone-walled residence designed by EDAA for a retired couple who wanted a home to entertain friends and family.

“Responding to this setting, EDAA chose volcanic stone for the walls of the house, matching the tones of the mountain landscape. This is accompanied by large expanses of glazing, while concrete floor slabs create courtyards and rooftop patios… 

The large expanses of steel-framed glazing pivot open from a sunken L-shaped living space into the surrounding gardens, while four bedrooms with glass walls have access to concrete patios with brightly coloured hammocks, located in the centre of the residence.”

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I particularly liked the environmentally smart water management system of the residence, that include two reservoirs designed to collect the abundant rainfall in the area.

“The first – located under a lawn in the courtyard – harvests and filters rainwater used for drinking, showering and laundry. The second is a circular reservoir that is open to the elements. It collects used tap water that is stripped of soap and oils, before being diverted back to the house for flushing toilets and irrigating the gardens.”

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Casa-Meztitla_EDAA_dezeen_784_12via: dezeen

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