Slow → articles tagged with craftsmanship

Marbled Paper by Esme Winters

Last year we discovered the beautiful work of Esme Winter, who works under her namesake label together with husband Richard Sanderson since 2008. The British designers/pattern makers create some of the most elegant decorative paper - for instance their 'Paper Collection' - being produced in this part of the world. The latest Esme Winter collection is a collaboration with Jemma Lewis, a marbled paper artist, who creates through traditional techniques, with everything she produces made in her garden shed in rural Wiltshire. Using the same techniques as the earlier Esme Winter hand-drawn geometric designs, the trio created a series of bold printed marbled papers which combine the extraordinary Esme Winter color palette and technique with Lewis' beautiful free hand marbling, forming a tremendous hybrid of their individual strengths into the great 'Marbled Paper' collection. [ Continue reading ]

Functional Luxury for the 21st Century

Amsterdam-based luxury travel bag brand Travelteq is one of those brands we have had a very close relationship with for the last half decade, both online in our writings as in the real world. Following a string of shared projects - like visiting the Travelteq factory in 2011 - we are very proud to present the latest and largest collaboration in which we worked together to redefine the strategy, rebuild the brand and restyle the complete identity. In the new vision for Travelteq a direct-to-consumer model is introduced. Key in this new ecosystem is the cutting out of the middlemen, through which Travelteq is able to eliminate high markups - passing the savings to the customers, offering highest quality handcrafted Italian bags and accessories at a revolutionary price point. In line with this new direction an updated aesthetic for the communication of the brand Travelteq was created and introduced in all its different elements on the newly launched website. [ Continue reading ]


Many modern skincare brands label themselves natural, but if you look closely at their ingredients almost none of them actually live up to the claim, mainly to guarantee a long shelf life. Motivated by how empty the signifier 'natural' has become in modern cosmetics, the newly launched Danish cosmetics brand NUORI has made it its mission to actually deliver what it claims. The brand only uses ingredients of natural origin and when they add actives to their formulations, only naturally occurring compounds such as vitamins and amino acids are chosen - resulting in a maximum shelf life of 12 weeks after which one has to start using new products. With its bold approach - which we love - of only using natural ingredients, the NUORI products are fresher than any other and form a unique addition to the market, available in Amsterdam at 290 Square Meters and in Paris at colette amongst others. [ Continue reading ]

Steinbeisser‘s Experimental Gastronomy

Upcoming 9, 10 and 11 October, two-Michelin-star chef Edwin Vinke from restaurant De Kromme Watergang is going to serve an exclusive dinner in the Lloyd Hotel & Cultural Embassy in Amsterdam as this year's edition of the super inspirational Steinbeisser‘s Experimental Gastronomy initiative. The dinner is entirely plant-based (vegan) with all ingredients from biodynamic or organic agriculture sourced in the Netherlands. Edwin Vinke is since 1993 owner and chef of the two-Michelin-starred restaurant De Kromme Watergang. Pleasure, passion and perfection form the basis of Vinke’s kitchen for which he was awarded “Chef of the Year” in 2011 by Gault Millau. For this edition Edwin Vinke will feature historical and curious flowers, herbs and vegetables. A special challenge for a chef that takes his inspiration from the Zeeland waters. [ Continue reading ]

OPPERMAN Vallance — Naturale Collection

With its slim profile, the Vallance briefcase by the London-based OPPERMAN brand is both elegant and sharp. Featuring one open compartment and one slim pocket on the side, the model can hold everything the modern man needs, making it one of the more desirable briefcases on the market since 2012, when the brand was founded. Last month a new version of the Vallance saw light, being our favorite edition of the briefcase till date. The so-called 'Naturale Collection' is made with a vegetable-tanned leather from the renowned Belgian tannery Masure, which has been operating since 1873. The leather used in the 'Naturale Collection' is uncolored and unfinished, meaning it is very sensitive and will develop a beautiful patina quickly. The leather will darken after a few days in the sun, and after years of use the hue will resemble a cognac color, showing amazing character one only gets from natural leather. [ Continue reading ]

TÊTE À TÊTE incendere

In recent years the field of elegant artisan fragrance products keeps growing stagnantly - whether its with perfume, cosmetics or our favorite; scented candles. Sydney-based TÊTE À TÊTE incendere is the latest addition to our list of young fragrance brands to watch. It was conceived in the winter of 2013, when creator Vicki Kim - a Parsons graduate who has worked with companies such as Cartier and Bulgari - decided to capture a cinematic moment from the classic The Graduate into a scented candle. This month, with the just released imagery the brand seems ready for the next level. Since the initial launch, TÊTE À TÊTE incendere has grown to contain four signature fragrances, each taking inspiration from a cinematic moment. The films Great Expectations, Raise the Red Lantern and The Blue Lagoon proved to be other great inspirations. Working from this beautiful concept and executed in the way the first candles were done, we look forward to more cinematic moments by Vicki Kim and her TÊTE À TÊTE incendere. [ Continue reading ]

Cycle Revolution

We really look forward to the end of the year when on the 18th of November a very interesting new exhibition on bicycles will open in the London-based Design Museum. Inspired by the new found interest in bicycles and cycling in Britain, which started somewhere in the beginning of this century, the museum felt the urge to focus on the craftsman bicycle makers, who tailor machines to the precise specifications of their users. Cycling has grown into a passion of many, having become a part of their identity - be it as a stylish way to get from A to B or as a fiercely competitive sport. Which will all be represented in the exhibition named 'Cycle Revolution': bringing together bicycles, clothing, accessories, equipment, film and photography to tell the powerful, personal and sometimes remarkable stories of cyclists and the machines that move them. We can't wait to visit! [ Continue reading ]

Drink Factory

Last month, we were introduced to the London-based collective of bartenders named Drink Factory, which aims to expand their shared creativity and knowledge of cocktails. Founded some 10 years ago by cocktail master Tony Conigliaro, Drink Factory released its first printed publication with their unique vision on the fascinating craft of creating cocktails in 2014 under the theme 'Gothic', resulting in a dark and brooding issue. A month ago the second issue saw light and this time a lot more color is added to the palette, with everything resolving around 'Silent Neon Flowers'. The underlaying concept is 'silent flavor', which resulted in botanical editorials by photographers Addie Chin, Ollie Harrop and Ruth Vatcher, translating the idea into their images, forming a stand out visual language for the magazine which places the subject in a truly unique light. For us, having found the extraordinary Drink Factory, all kinds of doors into the enormous world of cocktails are being opened, in which the new magazine forms an inspirational and insightful starting point for more exploration. [ Continue reading ]

The Collective Quarterly 02

For the latest edition of inspirational The Collective Quarterly, it has placed its exploratory gaze on the Mad River valley - officially known as the Winooski River - in Vermont, USA, visiting towns like Warren, Waitsfield, Moretown, Fayston, and Duxbury; an area famous for its architectural experimentations. There are more architects per capita in Warren than anywhere else in the United States. Throughout the ’60s and ’70s, these highly creative designers created experimental constructions on Prickly Mountain, heralding the arrival of the design/build movement, which was insightfully caught in the magazine's photographic story on the subject. Other chapters in the issue focus on; extreme sports like kayaking, big-air huck fests in sleds, and cliff-jumping at near-suicidal heights; a man who builds houses in the trees for the disabled youth; a woman who forges artful kitchen knives out of old horse-hoof rasps from her father’s blacksmith operation; and a socialist German refugee whose politically charged puppet shows in the fields of the Northeast Kingdom draw thousands. We love this new issue of extraordinary armchair travel by The Collective Quarterly. [ Continue reading ]


We recently became familiar with the Amsterdam-based REE PROJECTS, a young fashion brand developing collections for a women's wardrobe with a main focus on pure, refined timeless pieces with an edge. Having just stepped out in the world with a sharp and clean breakout collection which we really like. The brand has been inspired by a 'lost & found' suitcase found at the Dutch railway station many years ago. The suitcase and its contents - a stranger's wardrobe - are the conceptual starting point for both the REE PROJECTS brand and each individual design, be it now or in the future. The suitcase symbolizes the brand's journey and the new collection of bags is the first step. We really like REE PROJECTS highly potential debut collection and accompanying imagery and look forward what the future will bring us from this new name. [ Continue reading ]


We really like the latest project of Norwegian Rain's co-founder, and one of our favorite people working in fashion; the immaculate T-Michael, who joint forces with Dutch optics specialist Ralph Vaessen in a collaboration which was officially launched yesterday at Pitti Uomo. Both T-Michael and Vaessen have a distinct sense of elegant stand-out style and a sincere love for luxurious craftsmanship and after a chance meeting their new creative enterprise was born. The result is a capsule collection of one model; simplistic yet tantalizing for the pure at heart and the lover of devilish detailing. Named 'Raphael', the extraordinary glasses are produced by hand in Germany of natural horn - the material of choice for most of Ralph Vaessen's models and a clear favorite of ourselves as wel - and comes in four color ways: ivory, slate, grey, ebony and chocolate.  [ Continue reading ]

Peter Bellerby the Globemaker

Following on from last year’s inspirational 'American Craftsmen in Britain' profiles, which we really liked, Shinola and Jocks&Nerds have collaborated again in a series named 'Community of Craft', which resulted in a unique series of pop-up events in Shinola’s London shop. Over the coming months, five craftspeople will set up their own shops within the Shinola store. Members of the public can watch them work, learn what is involved in their craft, and purchase their own bespoke items. The third profile in the series focusses on Peter Bellerby, the London-based artisan globemaker of Bellerby & Co Globemakers. From the stand, to the artwork, the painting and map-making, each of the globes is expertly crafted using traditional and modern globemaking techniques, and is lovingly produced in their North London studio. The globes by Bellerby & Co have been used in Hollywood movies, in BBC and ITV productions as well as by established artists. Next to receiving customers from around the world searching for only the finest when it comes to globes. [ Continue reading ]


We recently became familiar with a fascinating new brand named ODE TO A, which was started in London and currently is based in Amsterdam. The startup design label founded by designer Sabrina Kraus López and brand manager Noëlle Maxine Tierie, took form after the piloting project Made in Patacancha, where Sabrina travelled to Peru to learn from and work with the remote weaving community of Patacancha. With growing industrialisation, traditional crafts, particularly in rural communities, are at risk of disappearing, ODE TO A aims to collaborate with diverse artisan communities to create limited edition collections that will showcase practiced skills in sleek modern designs, creating a new aesthetic and value in traditional craft. We are particularly drawn to the incredible collection of six rugs which are released under the ODE TO A label. Commissioned by the the British Council in partnership with Anou, the collection is the result of over an one month period in which Sabrina Kraus López worked with six artisans from the Anou community to create the Common Thread, a highly appealing series of bespoke hand woven rugs. [ Continue reading ]

Round Square Teaware

The 'Round Square Teaware' is the latest creation by the talented Taiwan-based designer Chuntso Liu. The designer, who was also responsible for the fascinating 'Ripple Tray' in 2009, presents a new range of tableware, which he created for Taiwanese design company Koan Design. The collection of tableware is the result of Liu's study of the laws of the universe and his fascination for the emulation with nature, from which humans create objects. While the rounded cups and the elegant teapot are an organic and logical shape for holding water, the cube-shaped handles are a tangibly human expression left on the surface that creates a subtle yet striking contrast, transcending functionality through decoration that both adds meaning to the object and forms an emotional bond with the user - aimed for by the designer. Aesthetically the 'Round Square Teaware' is clean, modern and highly appealing. We love this work by Liu. [ Continue reading ]

Ropes & Knots by Luke Stephenson

We have been following British photographer Luke Stephenson since our collaboration with him, when we gave a signed and numbered copy of his ‘An Incomplete Dictionary of Show Birds’ as our fourth Curated gift in 2013. In the following years Luke has kept very busy and made a name for himself through his exquisite eye for details which transcends his impeccable imagery, both in free project as on commissions. Recently another series of Luke has caught our attention when he portrayed Des Pawson (and some of his beloved knots, ropes and tools), the founder of the interesting Museum of Knots and Sailors’ Ropes for a feature in the inspirational magazine Hole & Corner. The incredible series by the photographer shows Stephenson's great talent, giving a wonderful and inspirational peek into the fascinating world of nautical ropes and knots guided by Pawson in an utmost aesthetic manner. [ Continue reading ]

Astier de Villatte

Astier de Villatte has been making handmade ceramics in Paris since 1996, following in the tradition of the great 18th century Parisian ceramic studios. The most famous Parisian manufacturer, Pont-aux-Choux, produced thousands of ceramic pieces in the 18th Century, right in the heart of the Latin Quarter, with other ceramic studios subsequently prospering in the Paris region in the 19th century. Successor to these famous manufacturers, Astier de Villatte is now the one and only major studio to keep the tradition of artisanal ceramic production in Paris alive. In 2008 a distinct addition was made to the output of Astier de Villatte in a collaboration with one of Takasago’s star perfumers, Françoise Caron, and her team of young perfumers. The result is a collection of an Eaux de Cologne, hand care products and our favorite: 33 scented vegetable-wax candles, each with a delicate scent that is never overpowering. Delectable both unlit and burning, the candles are encased in effervescent glass pots as well as signature Astier de Villatte white ceramic goblets. In our eyes, this makes Astier de Villatte one of the most interesting modern brands through their extraordinary skill to reinterpret techniques and aesthetics from past. [ Continue reading ]

The Martell Flask by Yorgo&Co.

Looking back at the last Salone del Mobile, which took place two weeks ago, we remain super impressed by one of the incredible new designs which were revealed in Milano. As part of the yearly wallpaper* Handmade exhibition, the renown designer/art director Yorgo Tloupas - together with his Yorgo&Co company - created an extraordinary design, combining different loves of his: cycling, design, and drinking cognac. The Martell flask (forming a beautiful follow-up to the Pinel et Pinel's collaboration) as envisioned by Tloupas consists of a top two-thirds, which contains water for the bike ride, and the bottom third contains Martell cognac, for the celebration. Making it our clear favorite out of this year's wallpaper* Handmade - the magazine’s sixth groundbreaking exhibition dedicated to the marriage of craftsmanship and design, of which the flask in our eyes is a prime example. We just love the both robust and elegant design by Tloupas, having created what without a doubt is the most beautiful flask ever for cycling. [ Continue reading ]

KOHEZI presenting the Y studio pens

Last month a very interesting new Amsterdam-based platform for craftsmanship and design from all around the world was officially launched by its founder Tico Oudhuis - who's also one of the founders behind VANOUDS, known for their beautiful handmade walnut tables. The new project named KOHEZI searches for beauty in the ordinary, finding inspiration in - as they state it themselves - clean design, dirty streets, nature life, city hectics, fresh flowers and old bricks. The first products available through KOHEZI are the fine Vørding gin, which is distilled in Amsterdam, jewelry by Berlin-based Simon&Me and finally the extraordinary pens by Y studio from Taiwan - which are incredible. The Taiwanese studio creates fine artifacts which can be used for a lifetime, and passed down from generation to generation. Their beautiful stationary collection is made from pure copper and brass, with a simple, minimalist design combined with elegant, pristine materials. The line includes two rollerball pens, a ballpoint pen, a mechanical pencil, a sketching pen, a pen container and a pen case.  [ Continue reading ]

Atelier des Martyrs

Since the very moment we stumbled upon the first imagery by coincidence, we have been fascinated by Atelier des Martyrs. The New York City-based and French made brand was erupted to create beautiful products to fragrance the home, and is now searching for final funding via Kickstarter to start their journey and get the first series of products produced. Following an extensive but unsatisfying research in the landscape of scented candles, founder Matthieu discovered the deficiency in simple, well designed, gender neutral, and above all natural and cruelty free products. In order for Atelier des Martyrs to become all the things mentioned and more, an entire suit of olfactory products were developed by Matthieu and his team, prototyped to absolute perfection. All candles are handmade using mouth blown glass, cotton wicks and only pure natural Rapeseed wax for the candles, resulting in a line of ecologically friendly products of the highest quality. [ Continue reading ]


New York City-based design studio PELLE creates objects and design for the modern age. Merging architectural practice and pristine craftwork, founders Jean and Oliver Pelle imbue their collections with a keen aesthetic and studied attention to functionality. Their pieces are to be lived with, handled, worn, and enjoyed. At the heart of PELLE’s work is a fusing of primary elements with modern form – geologic lines repurposed, blown glass and coiled leather forged to light contemporary spaces. We first discovered the work of Jean and Oliver when their - now famous - Soap Stones were first released after they had created them as a submission to the NYC destination exhibit for MoMA. The appealing form and feel of the Stones show their fine feeling for aesthetics, but when looking beyond it one sees a diversity in PELLE's creations, offering way more than the sharp lines of the soap objects - PELLE's catalogue is both elegant and playful, two elements which the two designers have merged masterfully. [ Continue reading ]


The Basel-based company Cloak, which was founded last year by Samuel Ruckstuhl, is a highly specialized carpet company dedicated to architects and interior designers. With the Ruckstuhl family legacy of more than hundred years of carpet weaving in Switzerland, the young company uniquely combines this ancient craft of carpet making with a contemporary design approach. With the New York subsidiary Ruckstuhl USA the mother-company has been serving industry leaders such as Apple, Calvin Klein, Frank Gehry, The Guggenheim Museum, Louis Vuitton and Vitra - with the new creative outlet building on this rich heritage, but aiming for areas and aesthetics beyond the formerly known. The fine rugs and carpets are produced - partly in The Netherlands - from naturally luxurious raw materials, which are handled with such reverence that they lose none of their extraordinary properties during the production process - with a focus on undyed wool and if, colored with eco friendly vegetable dyes. Cloak specializes on bespoke sizes, color accuracy and outstanding longevity, making their pieces some of the most appealing ones out there. [ Continue reading ]

NOMOS Glashütte DUW 3001

It took around three years to develop - and it became ready just in time for the Baselworld show: NOMOS Glashütte presents the so called DUW 3001, a super impressive new standard caliber from its Glashütte watchmaking workshops. At only 3.2 millimeters, this motor is incredibly flat - flatter than almost anything else that selfwinds and is produced in series in the watch industry - and also extremely accurate. The few other automatic calibers available are either less accurate or extremely expensive. But NOMOS Glashütte will remain in its established price category. Nearly all the parts in DUW 3001 are placed between the base plate and the three-quarter plate.The ratchet wheel, for example, is now placed entirely under the three-quarter plate - and so needed to be made flatter than before. To avoid friction between the wafer-thin parts, a special new material was used; it has excellent, low friction properties, is extremely even, and is easy to form and harden. So impressive! [ Continue reading ]


Some weeks ago, one of our favorite online retail specialists when it comes to the traditional crafts - OEN - shared this highly inspirational peek into the Hornevarefabrikken workshop in Bøvlingbjerg, Denmark. Founded in 1935, Hornvarefabrikken – which translates to The Hornware Factory – was set up by Peter Husted, a craftsman and visionary with great ambitions. He designed and made many of the spoons and tableware that are still sold by Hornvarefabrikken today. In 2007 designer Sara Brunn Buch acquired Hornvarefabrikken under the condition that she continued the tradition of first-rate craftsmanship. Still operating in the far West of Denmark, the company persists in creating immaculate hornware made by hand in a small set of workshops, valuing traditional craftsmanship in its core. Recently they even named their new collection - Tradition - after this exact philosophy consisting of tableware, accessories, interior and jewellery items, which are all produced in their incredible workshop, opened to us for a fascinating visit through OEN. [ Continue reading ]

The Collective Quarterly

Recently we became familiar with the inspirational new publication named The Collective Quarterly, a travel and design magazine resolving around the concept of discovery. Each issue will spotlight a single geographic location, focusing on the artisans, music, food, and natural wonders that make it special. The debut issue kicked in the door focussing on the famous Texan town of Marfa, illustrating a discourse around it through tales of Texas-style justice, a couple who makes boots by hand, a lost Mexican pueblo and other fascinating subjects bound to the location. Their latest beautiful issue Absaroka, which was released at the beginning of this year, is named after a region of Montana that once considered becoming its own state, and features a bevy of local characters and makers, including a company that supplies bags to US special forces, Blackfeet Indians who make their living on the backs of bucking horses, and for instance a man who has spent the past few decades following the movements of grizzly bears, amongst more inspirational stories, which make the magazines a perfect elegant vehicle for armchair travel. Keep an eye out on this fascinating project. [ Continue reading ]