Alexander Calder's Legacy

Alexander Calder is one of those guys that people like to be able to talk about to impress their friends. Many of you probably know him but not his name, he's that guy that makes mobiles (well, practically invented them artistically). His work is in art museums all over the country (most predominately displayed at the Milwaukee museum of art). For those of you who haven't heard of him, I highly recommend checking him out. His propensity to develop these mobiles that seemed all too surreal to be real due to their odd balancing acts is what makes his work so fascinating. However, very few will ever be able to master both physical balance and aesthetic balance to the same degree as Mr. Calder and thus we are left only to admire his awesome work. Until now! Here comes a book about making mobiles, and not those dumb ones with pictures attached to them, but honest semi-artistic, fun mobiles. This book's got you covered from start to finish, no experience necessary. At 10$ and free shipping (with a 25$+ purchase from Amazon), this book is an inexpensive start to an extremely fun hobby.

View product details at Amazon.

Because Libertarians Recycling Internet Memes is Funny

So, a couple months ago Rick Santelli stands up and says something interesting, that we shouldn't have to pay for other people's stupid decisions over the last decade. Shockingly, such a statement makes a bunch of sense. The end result is these various tea parties through out the country either on April 15th (good old tax day) or July 4th at various cities across the nation. The whole point is to protest the absurd amounts of government spending being proposed and passed into legislation without debate or discussion and the amount of expansionary policy that's being inserted into this legislation under the guise of the "urgency" of the situation. It's a modern day taxation without representation, if you will. So now there's these zazzle products (zazzle.com's a great website for printing slogans or logos on all sorts of things for a reasonable price). My favorite of which is this bumper sticker that says "Don't Tax Me Bro!" Besides being a great play on don't tase me bro, this is one of those awesome examples of bad Libertarian/Conservative humor. And at 4$ plus a little bit of shipping, it's definitely worth it. If you're interested in the "grass roots" (I hate that term) movement, a link to Rick Santelli's website is posted below. I encourage you to at least check out it; uninformed dissent is worse than compliance.

View product details at PeacPac's Zazzle.

Get Involved in Rick Santelli's ReTea Party.


Put Some Om in Your Home

While I'm on the topic of home furnishings, I might as well continue. This time I'll highlight a pillow. I love accent pillows for their ability to transform furniture from one look to another instantaneously. Take a look at what Om Home (haha, great name) has to offer. Their Moroccan inspired design weave together a primary color that's contrasted beautifully with popping secondary colors. My favorite is the New Market Coral, mostly do to the primary color. However, the pillow also does the best job of balancing the contrast with colors that work well. A 95$ price tag makes this pillow more than un-buyable for all but the select few, but this post isn't actually meant to entice you into buy the pillow (although I doubt that it would even if it was supposed to). This post is really about two things. First, always always always have pillows, for a variety of reasons, not the least of which is they're comfortable. A wide range of pillows is necessary, because rooms can be seasonally adjusted in 3-5 minutes simply by swapping accent pillows. A normally dark black couch can be made vibrant with the simple addition of an accent pillow. Lastly, they provide a chance to show your creative buying ability or more importantly your keen sense of style. Most furniture doesn't have terribly much to it for the good reason that it needs to be versatile to people's desires; accent pillows allow you to add that zazz or minutia to the room that can really tie it together. Secondly, this pillow serves as a starting ground for a room, which is great. All too often people pick things based around large scale items they own or would like, such as a couch or some painted walls. While this works for the most part, except for those unable to decorate in the first place, it's more challenging and thus more rewarding to do it the other way around. Pick something small with loads of color and design your room based around that. Even if you can't decorate, you're almost bound for success.

View product details at OM Home.

Everyone Deserves a Place to Sit

So I spent a couple hours today looking for a place to sit. I surfed through the highs and lows of industrialized design. While it's easy to get to the point where 1500$ for a dining room chair seems cheap (hopefully the modern design bubble bursts soon in similar fashion to the housing bubble), there's slim pickings available for those of us who don't have drug rolls of money. This chair ranks in at just above affordable (159$ plus 15$ shipping surcharge, waived for orders of two or more), but still worth mentioning. West Elm offers a variety of home furnishings at relatively modest prices (in general furniture turns out to be expensive). This chair is so appealing to me because of its pseduo elementary school desk chair throwback. Besides that, everything's done to perfection; the curvature of the seat, the ovular shape of the back, the color and wood grain, it's all absolute perfection. It's also everything a chair should be. Forgot ornate; forget amenities. This no armed, no cushioned (although according to reviews, still quite comfortable) chair isn't fucking around, that's for sure. But who wants their chair fucking around anyway? I applaud West Elm for continuing their trend and lifting their reputation with this excellent piece of craftsmanship.

View product details at West Elm.