POEM FOR ASPEN TREES


aspen tree poem, wind full of wantonness, design squish blog


And the wind, full of wantonness,
wooes like lover
The young aspen-trees till they
tremble all over.

- Thomas Moore (From Trees of America)



July 30, 2010

GARBAGE FIND: TREES OF AMERICA BOOK

trees of america, book found in park slope, design squish blog

trees of america, book found in park slope garbage day, design squish blog

From the book:

Who has seen the wind?
Neither I or you:
But when the leaves hang trembling
The wind it passing thro’.

Who has seen the wind?
Neither you nor I:
But when the trees bow down their heads
The wind is passing by.

Christina G. Rossetti


July 26, 2010

SUMMER

summer flowers, upstate new york, harriman state park,

The most cheerful thing I know is the calm, the silence,  which are so delicious,  both in the forest and the fields.

-Jean Francois Milllet

summer flowers, upstate new york


July 19, 2010

JULY 17:  WILD BERRY PICKING, HARRIMAN STATE PARK

harriman state park wild blackberries, design squish blog

wild salmon berriea and blackberries, design squish blog

Wild blackberries and red salmon berries gathered in Upstate New York, Harriman State Park. I never had salmon berries before.  They are so delicious! Almost as good as or better than raspberries.

wild salmon berry, wild blackberry, design squish blog


CHAIR FROM RECYCLED CHAIN LINK FENCE

recycled chain link fence chair, design squish blog

recycled chain link fence chair, design squish blog

Cafe America is an upcycled galvanized steel chain-link chair with stainless steel rod and fasteners by Grain. The chair flat-packs for efficient shipping and storage.  Handmade in the Pacific Northwest, USA.


July 07, 2010

NEW TREND: TINY HOUSE LIVING

design squish blog

design squish blog

design squish blog

design squish blog

design squish blog

“Man can better set up in a small house than in a huge castle.” - Leo N. Tolstoy

design squish blog

“With the loved ones you can be happy even in the smallest of places.” - Leo N. Tolstoy.

design squish blog


July 03, 2010

FLOWERS OF UPSTATE NEW YORK AND ONE BUTTERFLY

flowers of upstate new york, design squish blog

wild flowers of upstate new york, harriman state park, design squish blog

wild flowers of upstate new york, harriman state park, design squish blog

wild flowers of upstate new york, harriman state park, design squish blog

wild flowers of upstate new york, harriman state park, design squish blog

Photos taken in Harriman State Park, NY + motylek (small butterfly)


June 28, 2010

SOVIET ENVIRONMENTAL POSTERS

soviet environmental posters, design squish blog, red book protects nature

“Red List protects nature” - The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, founded in 1948, is the world’s most comprehensive inventory of the global conservation status of plant and animal species.

soviet environmental posters, birds-doctors of the forest

“Protect birds - they are doctors of the forest”

soviet environmental poster

soviet environmental poster, design squish blog

“Cut down one - plant ten”

design squish blog

“Welcome, my feathered friends!”


June 25, 2010

SUN BOXES

design squish blog

Sun Boxes  are installations by Craig Colorusso powered by the sun via solar panels. There is a different loop set to play a guitar note in each box continuously. These guitar notes collectively make a Bb chord. Because the loops are different in length, once the piece begins they continually overlap and the piece slowly evolves over time.

The sounds of Sun Boxes have been described as both soothing and energizing. A unique combination of adjectives often used to describe yoga, or meditation. When experiencing the piece, Sun Boxes allows the participant to slow down, and notice the subtleties of the composition unfold. With the abundance of technology and hustle of this culture it is a much needed concept to not only be allowed, but also encouraged to slow down.


June 22, 2010

DISPOSABLE PLATES FROM FALLEN PALM LEAVES

eco friendly, disposable plates made from fallen palm leaves

eco friendly, disposable plates made from fallen palm leaves

eco friendly, disposable plates made from fallen palm leaves

VerTerra’s disposable tableware is a great alternative to plastic and paper plates. It is made from fallen palm leaves and water only and biodegrades naturally within two months.


June 07, 2010

A FOREST FLOOR STILL LIFE…

a forest floor still life, design squish blog

Forest Floor Still Life by Otto Marseus Van Schrieck. Otto was a Dutch painter best known for mysterious dark close-ups of the live undergrowth of forest floors that give detailed views of
wild flowers, weeds, thistles, and mushrooms, lives of insects.

Even though it is not really a still-life, I think this painting is particularly amazing because of how still it is.


June 04, 2010

ECO-FRIENDLY DESIGN, NATIONAL DESIGN TRIENNIAL, 2010

eco-friendly book led lamp, green design, design squish blog

Book LED floor lamp. The lamp’s shade opens and closes like the cover of a book. As the shade opens wider, the light shines more brightly, and as it closes, it gradually dims and turns off. Made from recycled aluminum.

biodegradable coffin

Simple, non-toxic, eco-friendly biodegradable coffin!

eco-friendly stackable chairs

Eco-friendly chairs made from strawboard. (Strawboard, a formaldehyde-free material made of compressed straw- an alternative to wood particleboard or fiberboard)

invisible street light

Invisible Street Lights designed by Jongoh Lee are in the shape of tree leaves and can be wrapped around tree branches.  During the day, these leaf structures mingle in the tree’s natural leaves, harnessing and storing sunlight. At night, they provide a poetic alternative to streetlights. 

National Design Triennial is on right now at the Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum, New York City.

 


May 28, 2010

ECO-FRIENDLY FUTURE PERFECT

wood leftovers, scrap wood chair

Scrap wood chair. (Perfect DIY idea)

design squish blog

Skateboard wheels rotating table. (Great idea for reusing skateboard wheels)


design squish blog

Button toy. (Great idea for reusing buttons)

Future Perfect is a good new design store in
Williamsburg and East Village, New York.

 


May 26, 2010

REDESIGNING SPEAKERS

speakers by stanley ruiz

Log speakers by Stanley Ruiz - http://stanleyruiz.com  Stanley’s speakers are composed of only wood and metal. “It is a very lo-fi, unassuming approach to product design.  Improvisation is a major part of my process” - Stanley.


birch log speakers by stanley ruiz

birch log speakers by stanley ruiz

Ceramic speakers by Joey Roth: 

design squish blog

The speaker system is reduced to its most simple form.  It is also made out of all natural materials consisting of porcelain, cork, and birch.

design squish blog

redesigning speakers with natural materials

 

 


May 14, 2010

BIKE RIDE TO FORT TILDEN

bike ride to fort tilden, Fort Tilden, Far Rockaway, Brooklyn, NY

bike ride to fort tilden, Fort Tilden, Far Rockaway, Brooklyn, NY

Located on the Rockaway Peninsula Brooklyn, NY, Fort Tilden is mostly a natual area that was a former United States Army installation.  Fort Tilden today is largely a natural area of beach, dunes and maritime forest. Most of the old military installations are abandoned, though some buildings have been renovated and are used by local arts groups. Atop one of the old batteries, Battery Harris East, is a viewing platform offering 360-degree views.  Fort Tilden includes some of the most secluded beaches in New York.


April 19, 2010

BIKE REPAINTED AND RESTORED IN THE STYLE OF GZHEL CERAMICS

Old Bike repainted and restored in the style of Gzhel, folk russian ceramics

Old Bike repainted and restored in the style of Gzhel, folk russian ceramics

Old Bike repainted and restored in the style of Gzhel, folk russian ceramics

Old Bike repainted and restored in the style of Gzhel, folk russian ceramics

Gzhel ceramics

Old rusty bike found on garage sale restored and repainted in the Gzhel style of ceramics. Gzhel is a Russian style of ceramics which takes its name from the village of Gzhel and surrounding area, where it has been produced since 1802.


April 08, 2010

MORE PARKS IN NEW YORK CITY: BROOKLYN BRIDGE PARK

brooklyn bridge park

brooklyn bridge park

Brooklyn Bridge Park is an 85-acre park currently under construction on the Brooklyn waterfront in the vicinity of the Manhattan and Brooklyn bridges. As of March 22, 2010 the first newly built section of the park, Pier 1, has been open to the public. !!!!!!!!!!!!


March 30, 2010

DINOSAUR TRUE COLORS

design squish blog

The discovery, which the researchers reported last week in Nature, supports research showing that birds are dinosaurs, having descended from a group of bipedal dinosaurs called theropods.
Dr. Prum and his colleagues, meanwhile, had set out on a similar quest. Working with paleontologists at the Beijing Museum of Natural History and Peking University, the researchers began to study a 150-million-year-old species called Anchiornis huxleyi. The chicken-sized theropod was festooned with long feathers on its arms and legs.

mohawk dinosaur true colors
Above: Mohawk Dinosaur

Scientsts were able to assign color to individual feathers and thus work out color patterns for the entire fossil of Anchiornis huxleyi, a small, feathered, two-legged dinosaur that lived roughly 150 million years ago.  The animal would have weighed about four ounces (110 grams) and appears to have had a dark gray or black body and wings with some white feathers that gave it a stripe pattern, plus a reddish-brown crest and speckles on the face. ( Source:  New York Times and Discovery News)


DIY:  BIRD CAGE LAMP

design squish blog

I see a lot of old beautiful bird cages in the garbage. I think I threw out a few as well a long long time ago. What I did not know is that they can be transformed into beautiful lamps. This re-purposed bird cage lamp above is by PSPCA ( Philadelphia Society of Prevention of Cruelty to Animals).  The curtain will naturally diffuse the light acting as a lamp shade!


March 10, 2010

HAPPY INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY!

INTERNATIONAL WOMEN'S DAY VINTAGE SPRING AND FLOWERS POSTCARDS, march 8

INTERNATIONAL WOMEN'S DAY VINTAGE SPRING AND FLOWERS POSTCARDS, march 8

INTERNATIONAL WOMEN'S DAY VINTAGE SPRING AND FLOWERS POSTCARDS, march 8

design squish blog

International Women’s Day vintage spring and flowers postcards.  (С 8 Марта!)

more →

March 08, 2010

DIY: BUILD YOUR OWN WELL

design squish blog

design squish blog

How to hand build your own well!!! (in Russian): www.kolodec.ru


DIY: MAKE YOUR OWN BIKE MESSENGER BAG

diy bike messenger bag, billboard sign material

recycled banner bike bag, make your own messenger bike bag

I was excited to find these great “Recycled Banner Golden Mean Messenger Bags”  DIY instructions a la Freitag bike messenger bags.  (Can be made under $5 !!!!!!!!!!!!!). Comfortable, light, tough billboard sign material (waterproof). To view instructions please visit: EEIO Golden Mean messenger bag instructions
In stores, nice bike messenger bags can be $200. Making your own not only saves money but also is good for environment.  I just saw a truck driver discard a big piece of truck tarpaulin and now it is lying on the street waiting to be made into bags.


March 03, 2010

HIGH SPEED RAIL SYSTEM

design squish blog

U.S massive high speed rail is officially on the way!

“According to one recent study, implementation of pending plans for the federally designated HSR corridors could result in an annual reduction of 6 billion pounds of CO2” - from High Speed Rail Strategic Plan.


February 01, 2010

SLEDDING IN THE CITY

design squish blog

Above: Sledding in Central Park

sledding in prospect park

Above:  Sledding in Prospect Park

I was surprised to find out that sledding was and is a lovable activity after the snow storm in New York City Central and Prospect Parks.  Next time it starts snowing ( as it does not happen too often nowadays) I am definitely hurrying to the Prospect Park with my sled.  But what is even more surprising is that back in the days horse drawn sleigh rides were a popular activity in NYC Central Park during the winter.  Back in February of 1876, the NY Times reported over 10,000 sleighs passing through the park in one day.

sledding, sleigh rides

Above: Sleigh riding in Central Park

“The Central Park blogger recently recalled the days when the sleighs were active, noting: “For most of the latter half of the 19th century, right up until its demolition in 1915, the McGown’s Pass Tavern awarded a magnum of champagne to the first sleigh that reached it each season. The tradition was carried on with the Central Park Casino until it’s demise in 1934.” The NY Times reported on the tradition back in 1910, saying that year the snow wasn’t heavy enough for “good sleighing.” - Jen Carlson, Gothamist

snow, sleigh riding in new york city


Watch a video showing how popular sleigh rides were


January 11, 2010

FIELDS OF CANOLA

canola field

Have you ever walked in or passed by a large bright yellow field of flowers? Rapeseed (Brassica napus) is a bright yellow flowering member of the family Brassicaceae (mustard or cabbage family). In agriculture, canola are certain varieties of rapeseed oil, or the oil produced from those varieties. Today 80% of the acres sown are genetically modified canola.


January 08, 2010

SUNS, MOONS AND TREES IN SHAKER DRAWINGS

shaker-gift-drawings

shaker-art

shaker-drawings

shaker-drawing

shaker-gift-drawings

shaker-tree-drawing

Images from the book Heavenly Visions:Shaker Gift Drawings and Gift Songs.

shaker drawings, burning bush

swhaker drawings, wreath


December 21, 2009

NATURE DEFICIT DISORDER

design squish blog

Nature Deficit Disorder, is a term invented by Richard Louv in his book called “Last Child in the Woods”. Louv writes that children are spending less time outdoors, resulting in a wide range of behavioral problems. Louv claims that causes for the phenomenon include parental fears, restricted access to natural areas, and the lure of the screen. Recent research has drawn a further contrast between the declining number of National Park visits in the United States and increasing consumption of electronic media by children.
Richard Louv spent 10 years traveling around the USA reporting and speaking to parents and children, in both rural and urban areas, about their experiences in nature. He argues that sensationalist media coverage and paranoid parents have literally “scared children straight out of the woods and fields,” while promoting a litigious culture of fear that favors “safe” regimented sports over imaginative play.
Causes:
Parents are keeping children indoors in order to keep them safe from danger. Richard Louv believes we may be protecting children to such an extent that it has become a problem and disrupts the child’s ability to connect to nature. The parent’s growing fear of “stranger danger” that is heavily fueled by the media,  keeps children indoors and on the computer rather than outdoors exploring. Louv believes this may be the leading cause in nature deficit disorder as parents have a large amount of control and influence in their children’s lives.
Loss of natural surroundings in a child’s neighborhood and city. Many parks and nature preserves have restricted access and “do not walk off the trail” signs. Environmentalists and educators add to the restriction telling children “look don’t touch”. While they are protecting the natural environment Louv questions the cost of that protection on our children’s relationship with nature.
Increased draw to spend more time inside. With the advent of the computer, video games and television children have more and more reasons to stay inside, “The average American child spends 44 hours a week with electronic media”.
Effects:
Children have limited respect to their immediate natural surroundings. Louv says the effects of nature deficit disorder on our children will be an even bigger problem in the future. “An increasing pace in the last three decades, approximately, of a rapid disengagement between children and direct experiences in nature …this has profound implications, not only for the health of future generations but for the health of the earth itself.”
Childhood obesity has become a growing problem. There have been multiple studies that show children who go outside more often exercise more.
Attention disorders and depression may develop. “It’s a problem because kids who don’t get nature-time seem more prone to anxiety, depression and attention-deficit problems.” Louv suggests that going outside and being in the quiet and calm can help greatly. Attention Restoration Theory develops this idea further, both in short term restoration of a person’s abilities, and the long term ability to cope with stress and adversity.
In an interview on Public School Insight, Louv stated some positive effects of treating nature deficit disorder, “everything from a positive effect on the attention span to stress reduction to creativity, cognitive development, and their sense of wonder and connection to the earth.” From Wiki.


October 30, 2009

REUSING OLD BUTTONS

reusing old buttons - fridge magnets

Reusing old buttons as fridge magnets. By Skin and Tonic Too.

old antique buttons rings

Rings made with old vintage buttons. Found in Red Chair Antiques shop.


October 12, 2009

WHATCOM MUSEUM - THE LIGHTCATCHER BUILDING

bellingham, whatcom museum new building

new museum, lightcatcher

The Lightcatcher building (opening- November 14, 2009) designed by Olson Sundberg Kundig Allen Architects will feature multiple exhibit spaces in new climate controlled galleries. The Lightcatcher is designed to meet LEED (Leadership in Engineering and Environmental Design) Silver standard and includes a “green” roof, providing a venue for the Museum to offer programs around sustainability and conservation.


lightcatcher building-art museum, bellingham, wa


“The basic concept for this new museum is that museum turned inside out—to make the building as active on the outside as it will be on the inside. An iconic 36-foot-tall, 180-foot-long translucent wall, “the lightcatcher,” is conceived as the focal point and backdrop to a central courtyard that will become a new gathering place for the city. The exterior of the museum will be an invitation to engage in art and will allow pedestrians walking by to view the art and activity within” - Olson Sundberg Kundig Allen Architects


October 08, 2009

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