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Grab a swacket and check your fashion terminology | Reuters

September 26, 2011 Leave a comment
Blazerbermuda

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Reuters – The fashion industry has been dressing up more than just catwalk models in New York, London and Milan this month, as its flamboyant use of language is flummoxing ordinary British shoppers, a major British retailer said.

Even personal shoppers need fashion dictionaries to understand words such as “spants(harem pants) and “swacket(a sweater/jacket) — lexicon that is used on a regular basis by fashionistas, according to British department store Debenhams.

“It’s now easier to understand complex calculus than some of the words commonly used by commentators within the fashion industry to describe garments,” spokesman for Debenhams, Ed Watson, said in a statement.

“We believe that these words are only properly understood by approximately five per cent of the population – yet they are commonly used throughout the fashion industry,” he said.

via Grab a swacket and check your fashion terminology | Reuters.

Strange Random Fashion Quote:

Fashions fade, style is eternal.” – Yves Saint Laurent (French fashion designer, b.1940)

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Kenneth Grange: half a century at the forefront of British design | Art and design | The Observer

Kenneth Grange's dessign for the Kodak Instamatic camera

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Once you know who Kenneth Grange is – once you’ve learned a little about his remarkable 50-year career and your eye is in – you see his work everywhere: on streets and stations, in your kitchen, your cupboards and your desk drawer. If the tube had let me down this morning, I might even have travelled here in one of his designs the London taxi cab, which he remodelled in 1997. Such visual omnipotence, though, is starkly at odds with his personality, which is not grand at all. Grange, modest to a fault, is apt to attribute even his greatest hits – the InterCity 125 train, for instance, which was introduced in 1976 and which is still going strong – to hard work and serendipity rather than his own genius. The retrospective of his career that is shortly to be staged at the Design Museum is certainly pleasing, but he hopes, too, that it won’t cause people to think that he is no longer working. ” Because I am – surprise, surprise. Why would I stop? I mean, if a bloke can play the piano, you don’t stop him playing it, do you?” It’s his wife the unstoppable Grange feels sorry for. “It’s a bugger living with a designer, you know. We keep sticking our noses in. She can’t buy a tea towel without me having an opinion.”

via Kenneth Grange: half a century at the forefront of British design | Art and design | The Observer.

Strange Random Design Quote:

We live in a society where everybody feels guilty. We want to do good, but we don’t want to get out of the house. A brand can help us feel good if you buy this yogurt. – Mark Gobé

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Sites you didn’t know existed – International Colour Authority

January 24, 2011 Leave a comment
A Solid Matte Formula Guide from Pantone, 2005...
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Colour is vital to organisations across the world. Whether involved in interior design, fashion, manufacturing or a host of other activities, colour is a pre-eminent factor in establishing whether a product will or will not sell. ICA colour forecasts, 24 months ahead of the retail selling season, are now available online with Pantone© and NCS notations to ensure colour accuracy when communicating on the Internet.

via What We Do | International Colour Authority.

No, really, this is what they do. This information is not cheap, either – a subscription for Autumn / Winter 2011 – 2012 will cost you 250 pounds (sterling) or you can get two seasons for 400 pounds.

Who said colour wasn’t important?

Strange Random Colour Quote:

There are no lines in nature, only areas of colour, one against another. – Edouard Manet

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David McCandless: The beauty of data visualization – TED Talks

September 12, 2010 1 comment
David McCandless at dConstruct 2010
Image by Yohan Creemers via Flickr

David McCandless turns complex data sets (like worldwide military spending, media buzz, Facebook status updates) into beautiful, simple diagrams that tease out unseen patterns and connections. Good design, he suggests, is the best way to navigate information glut — and it may just change the way we see the world.

Strange Random Information Quote:

“The two words ‘information’ and `communication’ are often used interchangeably, but they signify quite different things. Information is giving out; communication is getting through.” – Sydney J. Harris (American Journalist and Author, 1917-1986)

Projection Mapping – Buildings come to Life!

Destination Docklands concert image 1

Destination Docklands concert - Jean-Michel Jarre

Architectural Projection Mapping is the process of projecting computer-generated images onto a building, a sort of 21st-Century son et lumière and probably what Jean-Michel Jarre would have used for his concerts if he had had the technology twenty years ago.

To start with, here’s an example of how you could use a building for advertising purposes:

Here is an amazing recent show at the Plaza de Toros in Albacete, as part of the Theatre Festival of Castilla-La Mancha. This is the full 15-minute version, so put it on fullscreen and enjoy!

Finally, fans of ACDC and / or Iron Man should not miss this video, a presentation of the new movie at Rochester Castle, UK. Again, put it on fullscreen and turn up the volume!

If you want to see more examples, visit Urban Screen, who specialise in these techniques.

Strange Random Building Quote:

The space within becomes the reality of the building – Frank Lloyd Wright

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Christmas gifts that don’t stink – guaranteed!

December 14, 2009 Leave a comment

From the Natural History Museum‘s online store, come the latest in green (ecological) gifts. Among the recycled circuit boards, CDs and beer bottles, you can find the ultimate in house plants – your own pine tree in a box filled with reindeer, um, excrement. The choice of fertilizer is explained like this:

In the wild, reindeer eat a range of plants and fruit. The seeds are then distributed in their dung, which provides an ideal nutrient-rich environment for plants to grow. Dung is taken from UK zoos and safari parks, then treated to remove germs and odours.

Other gifts in the same series are Elephant Poo (with an Angel Rose) and Rhino Poo (complete with banana plant).

The more adventurous may also like to sample other elephant poo products such as the elegantly-titled “Poo Notes” notebook or the Bauble Decorations made of the same resistant material.

Whatever your choice, remember that buying green makes a difference:

Profits from all online shop orders support the Museum’s research into fighting diseases like malaria and conserving the biodiversity of our planet.

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Strange Random Language Fact:

“Euouae,” a medieval music term, is the longest word in English that contains only vowels. It’s also the word with the most consecutive vowels.

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Beautifully packaged Graphic Design

November 15, 2009 Leave a comment
The Kiss of the Vampire

Image via Wikipedia

If you stop to think about the diversity of words, texts and logos that surround us almost perpetually, you realise that the hand of a graphic artist is never more than a few inches away. Yet we rarely stop to admire the design of our cereal box, or at least not consciously, nor do we ponder just how many different typefaces have printed the name Obama. For a closer look at this omnipresent art form, Colecte offers us everything from Japanese matchbox labels, letterheads for trucking companies, to Cinema title cards for such classics as “The Kiss of the Vampire“. Once you’ve got a taste for appreciating graphic design, everyday shopping trips may take on a completely new dimension.

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