Slow → articles in Craftsmanship

The Very Last of the Very Best

Recently we came across this beautiful and inspirational project by the Bergen, Norway-based Of and With Studios. They recently released a collection of leather bags crafted from the last batch of leathers ever tanned on Osterøy Island, Norway. The project started in the summer of 2010, when they met Erling Teigland, initially to find out if there were grounds for a collaboration. Erling had worked at the Borge tannery since he came out of high school in 1970. Unfortunately only months after the first meeting between Of and With and Erling, he had his last day at work, because the world-renowned tannery was forced to shut its doors. The company that had been tanning since 1889, quietly supplying the finest names in high-end goods, from Louis Vuitton and Hermès to entire African royal families was no more. This moment sparked the ambition to start a journey to honor sincere and joyful craftsmen like Erling and the fine tradition that Borge represented. A journey that continued on to eventually become the first in-house lifestyle brand by Of and With Studios named Ætt. [ Continue reading ]

Coloni Spring/Summer 2014

We absolutely love the new collection by Sweden-based gardening house, and one of the most elegant companies worldwide; Coloni. For Spring/Summer 2014 the company has explored the field of species for growing on balconies and other small spaces. By focusing on these species with a wild character, such as meadow flowers and different kinds of grasses, and combining them with species that have a graphic and dramatic character the aim is to create seed mixtures with a natural and less structured feeling. Inspired by the rhythm of day and night and its different moods, the collection named From Dusk Till Dawn consists of the seed mixtures Early Shades, Harvest Noon and Into the Night. [ Continue reading ]

Telar by Nido

We really appreciate the latest endeavor by Argentinian knitwear brand Nido. Under the name Telar the brand now offers beautiful artisan hand loom woven textiles parallel to their own beautiful collections of wearable knitwear products. The loom, which is used in the knitting process of the textiles, is one of the earliest devices which was used for production of fabric in Argentina. It is a wooden rectangle which holds threads lengthways by fixing them on both ends. Thanks to its specific mechanism, the loom is able to lift these threads individually or in groups, creating an opening, or 'calada', through which weft threads can pass. These interlaced threads form the cloth, making the textiles both aesthetically and technically very appealing. [ Continue reading ]

Hellstrøm Aquavit & Juleaquavit

The Norwegian Chef Eyvind Hellstrøm is part owner of the two star Michelin restaurant Bagatelle in Oslo and president of the Bocuse D´Or Europe, but also a TV personality who advocates the joy and importance of home cooked meals. 'Enkelt og Perfekt', meaning 'Simple and Perfect' in Norwegian is Hellstrøm´s mantra and when design agency Olssøn Barbieri was asked to design the bottle for Hellstrøm's to be developed liquor, they regarded it as the essential ingredient for the integrity of the brand. Authoritative, masculine, accessible and heritage were additional ingredients to shape the product and take decisions in terms of materials, bottle shape, execution, tone of voice and colors. The ingredients on the front and the measuring scale on the side are both homages to the chef's world. To silkscreen the bottle by Verallia in France was a choice to 'reduce' and aspire to an iconic and sharp brand personality, together with allowing the product to transmit a feeling of heritage and trustworthiness. In which they succeeded very gracefully in our eyes. [ Continue reading ]

Unmonday Model 4.3

The Unmonday Model 4.3 speaker represents an extremely complete solution to a very specific problem. The goal in the creation of the speaker was to fabricate something truly wireless and flexible, without compromising on sound quality and design sensibility. As a result the system streams audio from any Apple AirPlay compatible device across one to five speakers allowing for mono, stereo, multi-room or surround sound. Even if there is no WiFi available. But besides being very pragmatic, the Unmonday Model 4.3 is also hand-made by professional craftsmen; from the vitro porcelain enclosure to the custom-made amplifier, the speaker needed to be perfect in every sense. The speaker is even designed to stay on top over time. It can be updated simply by swapping out the hardware and downloading software updates, without renewing either the durable porcelain housing or the driver. The Unmonday Model 4.3 is therefore a remarkable speaker in every aspect. [ Continue reading ]

Kokeshi dolls

We've slowly been collecting Kokeshi dolls for some years now. From the moment we found the first doll at Tortoise General Store we have been fascinated and impressed by the craft that goes into the production of the dolls, which clearly shows. In this video the modern production process of the Kokeshi has beautifully been caught on camera by Sàneyuki Owada of Japanstore. However, the origin of the beautiful Kokeshi dolls lays in North-East Japan, where it was first produced as wooden toy for children during the closing chapter of the Edo period, which ended in 1868. These first dolls were produced by woodwork artisans, called Kiji-shi, who normally made bowls, trays and other tableware by using a lathe. They began to make small dolls in the winter to sell to visitors who came to bathe in the many hot springs near their villages, which was believed to be a cure for the demands of a strenuous agricultural lifestyle. [ Continue reading ]

Juglans Chest of Drawers

Larkbeck is a London-based studio collaboration between two furniture makers: Rafe Mullarkey and Laszlo Beckett. Their central London workshop focuses on traditional cabinet making techniques, combined with contemporary technologies. The two designers celebrate the development of practical art within the design of fine furniture. Their furniture is produced in limited editions, constructed from solid hardwood, and explore the decorative possibilities of domestic objects reaching back to a more classical aesthetic. Larkbeck's furniture consist of sculptural elements of contrasting surfaces and planes, which is incorporated in to forms derived by purpose. We particularly love the beautiful Juglans Chest of Drawers designed by Rafe Mullarkey, which is the third piece within the Fold Editions series and will be presented to the public at Design Shanghai 2014. Constructed from American Black Walnut, the piece is shaped to accentuate sculptural elements consisting of contrasting surface planes, presented in an overall form derived by purpose. [ Continue reading ]

Village Cold Brew for LiveBuild

We love coffee in all its forms, and last weekend our favorite coffee bar The Village Coffee & Music was kind enough to offer a delicious cold brew to the public during the 24 hour LiveBuild fundraiser, which took place throughout the city of Utrecht. Illustrator Raymond Teitsma was responsible for the design of the label on the medicine-like bottle, exclusively brewed for and entirely donated to the project. This year's 24 hour LiveBuild raised money for the Manganjo water project. This endeavor aims to achieve the facilitation of clean drinking water and proper sanitation in the Cameroonian villages: Mabonji, Nganjo Nene and Nganjo Titi. Once, through amongst others the donations during last weekends fundraiser, the villages are provided with the proper wells, they will manage and maintain the water system itself from a yet to establish local water business. [ Continue reading ]


AJOTO is a great new London-based lifestyle brand focusing on the creation of ‘Beautfiul Tools for Everyday Journeys’. Founded in the Spring of 2011 by designers Chris Holden and Tim Higgens, a period of two years followed in which the partners developed and refined the first of their tools, which were eventually launched to the public at London Collections: Men in January 2014. Attention to detail is key in everything AJOTO creates, and can be observed throughout every stage of the design and during the production, from sourcing specialist materials to pushing manufacturing processes. This approach has lead to the creation of the first set of products which are both aesthetic and built to last a lifetime. AJOTO debuts with a beautiful pen and accompanying leather pen pouch; the Make Your Mark collection, next to a robust leather wallet which will serve you many years as part of the For The Journey collection. [ Continue reading ]


Amsterdam-based brand Ikku creates future friendly accessories with a beautiful minimalistic aesthetic. Their latest collection features products made out of organic cotton denim combined with vegetable tanned leather. An ongoing search for future friendly materials brought Ikku to Turkey, where they found a 13 oz. heavy organic cotton denim, and to Italy, for premium quality Italian vegetable tanned leather. This combination of two beautiful fabrics matches the sophisticated and sober designs Ikku is creating a name for itself with. [ Continue reading ]

Cold Brew

We love, especially now during the Holidays, the latest by Crooked Nose & Coffee Stories from Vilnius, Lithuania; a cold brew coffee made out of freshly and light roasted Colombian Medellin beans, steeped for 14 hours. It's also double filtered to have a texture as soft as possible. The first batch of the hand bottled coffee consist of 35 items and was presented during Christmas market organized by Lithuanian Design Block in Vilnius, Lithuania. [ Continue reading ]

BYREDO Lanes Collector’s Edition Candles

We love the latest by our favorite BYREDO. For the Holidays, the Swedish cosmetics house of Ben Gorham introduces: Lanes, a collector's edition candle collection available in three BYREDO fragrances: Bibliothèque, Cotton Poplin and Fleur Fantôme. All candles are created in hand-blown glass with a clean striped aesthetic and produced in the BYREDO signature deep black wax, even though each fragrance has a specific wax formulation. In line with the high standard one expects from BYREDO, the candles are hand made in France using the mentioned high quality glass and all candles have cotton wicks. The three different fragrances are limited to 500, making it the perfect special gift for the Holidays. [ Continue reading ]

Susanne Kaufmann Advent Calendar

Susanne Kaufmann, who both created a spa concept and is a producer of organic cosmetics, celebrates its 10-year anniversary. For this occasion, 24 companions from the last 10 years have been asked to name their favorite product from the care line, talk about their loveliest indulgent experience and mention the tea they like relaxing in the spa with the most. The story of the spa and cosmetics line started when Susanne Kaufman implemented her visionary spa concept for the first time in Hotel Post in Bezau. The in-house cosmetics brand Susanne Kaufmann organic treats emerged seemingly incidentally around the same time. And thus began the story of the brand Susanne Kaufmann which now has 60 unique products that are sold internationally and a unique spa concept that is featured in selected hotels around the world. [ Continue reading ]

Travelteq Navy

Travelteq just released a full line of products in navy Florentine Vacchetta leather. The Notebook Cover, Macbook Sleeve, Cardholder, Cardholder Mini, Passport Holder all come in this beautiful dark blue.
Together with this they came with an All-Leather edition of their signature Trash laptop bag. Where the original is made with a leather outer shell and the main compartment covered with water resistant nylon, the new editions are totally made out of the high quality Florentine Vacchetta leather which Travelteq uses for all their products. The All-Leather edition gives the Trash just that extra luxurious appeal, and with the extraordinary leather used for the bags the new bag will look even more tremendous after using it for a longer period of time. [ Continue reading ]

Bang & Olufsen BeoLap

Bang & Olufsen recently introduced the very eye pleasing wireless speakers called the BeoLap 17, 18 and the BeoLap 19: a beautiful subwoofer that really stands out. "These new speakers usher in a new era of high-end sound," says Lars Fredgaard, director of the division of speaker Bang & Olufsen. "Until now, this level of performance was achieved only with speakers connected by cables. Our newest products use a robust wireless standard with sufficient bandwidth and channels for providing a listening experience as the artist intended. Higher sound quality without tasteful interior to disrupt, can now be realized in three ways." [ Continue reading ]

The Garden Edit

The Garden Edit is a beautifully curated collection of products for, and inspired by, the garden. Founded by English gardener John Tebbs, the platform redraws the traditional boundaries associated with shopping and the garden by bringing together a modern collection of products that embody functionality, timelessness and beauty. A gardener for over 15 years, John creates and maintains private and commercial gardens across London. Working under the title Finch Gardening, he has a client base who love the personal touch and appreciate the garden as an evolving space. [ Continue reading ]

Two Years of O Editorial

Celebrating two years of existence, O Editorial presents a beautiful new website and a collection of special edition products, in collaboration with some exciting portuguese brands. Pairing timeless design and traditional production techniques, O Editorial products stand out for the quality of materials, attention to detail and functionality. The products in celebration of the two years of existence are a notebook in collaboration with Grafolita, a bag with Ideal & Co and a beautiful stool by Boa Safra. [ Continue reading ]

Absolut Originality

This month Absolut presented a very appealing limited collection of bottles called Absolut Originality. The elegant collection features four million individually designed bottles, each made into a one-of-a-kind work of art, as they have a drop of cobalt blue infused into the molten glass during production. Following last year’s launch of Absolut Unique, the liquor brand continued in finding an interesting new concept for their next limited edition with the ambition  to capture the soul of Absolut, expressing creativity and quality as its cornerstones. [ Continue reading ]

Volvo Concept Coupé

It's not that often we feature news from the car industry, but the direction Volvo has taken with its newest car we really love: the Concept Coupé. The concept, which is the first design from Volvo's new design director, embodies a bold and interesting makeover for the Swedish car brand. The first out of three concept cars points out the new design direction for Volvo. Thomas Ingenlath, Senior VP of Design, says this car manifests that Volvo "will stand out as the calm, confident and naturally powerful challenger." The Concept Coupé offers new elements to the Volvo brand by merging contemporary Scandinavian lifestyle and design with iconic elements from Volvo’s 1960’s era and the beautiful P1800 in particular. The result is a new aesthetic showing craftsmanship and innovation. [ Continue reading ]

Stadsbranderij Noord

Two weeks ago we were invited by Kees Kraakman, the man behind the coffee roastery located in the North of Amterdam as part of the cooperative Open Coöp named Stadsbranderij Noord. Kees has been a household name in the Dutch coffee industry for quite some years now. His life in coffee started in 1999 at The Golden Coffee Box as a friend of his was working there and he was looking for a job after finishing high school. Having worked there for little over 10 years Kees left and started as an independent in the coffee industry giving training and consulting, and eventually starting the coffee roastery Stadsbranderij Noord. [ Continue reading ]

Globe-Trotter Jet leather series

Handcrafted at the Globe-Trotter factory in Hertfordshire, England the highly appealing Jet leather series is inspired by modern luxury travel. The bags and accessories are hand crafted from Windsor grain leather and have engraved chrome hardware. The collection’s aesthetic is fresh and smooth, following the core suitcase design. It consists of Holdalls, Briefs, and a selection of accessories in the luxurious colors black, burgundy, green, blue and navy complemented with sunshine yellow and broken white for several accescoires. [ Continue reading ]

Clarks on Craftsmanship

The British company Run Productions just released a series of three short movies on craftsmanship they made for Clarks. Drawing on the passion that is put into shoemaking and the heritage of other craftsmanship such as bookbinding, surfboard making and Savile Row tailoring it became an homage to pure English craft. [ Continue reading ]

Landmarks & Lions

With all the Apple news coming up next week, it's good to see people keep on creating good things to support their devices. Landmarks & Lions is one of those companies. Aside from their lovely wallets they've just released this beautiful leather and canvas iPad case, called 'The Quantum case'. Made out of calf skin leather in black or cognac, hand cut and sewn together with contrast stitching and individually hand painted it makes the perfect cover for the iPad. The other thing we love from them is this sleek and slim Tuscan wallet. [ Continue reading ]

Zoeppritz LZ127 Blanket

We recently came across the fascinating story behind the LZ127 blanket, made by German blanket-producer JAG Zoeppritz. The original Zoeppritz company has a long heritage and was founded 1828 in Mergelstetten, Germany by the two brothers Jacob and Georg Zoeppritz. Which inspired the 'JAG', as in Jacob And Georg, in the contemporary JAG Zoeppritz. Coincidentally 100 years after Zoeppritz was founded, in 1928, the events happened which led to the now legendary status given to the LZ127 blanket which recently was taken in production once again. [ Continue reading ]