Category Archives: Product Design

5 Top Design Picks for Kitchen Tools

With the holidays upon us, our thoughts naturally turn to those occasions where meals take center stage. Whoever is doing the cooking, good kitchen tool design can make all the difference – and cute stocking-stuffers.

Regardless of culinary expertise, not all kitchen tools are made equal. And it’s not always about price, but it is about design. So, here’s a round-up of my top kitchen tool design picks to make someone’s kitchen duty a whole lot smoother.

 

1. Magnetic Measuring Spoons

Magnetic Measuring Spoons

These measuring spoons made the cut not only because they stay together in the drawer. Each spoon has three outstanding design features: an oval side to fit into narrow spice jars, a round side for measuring liquids and all have a flat base for resting on the counter without spilling the contents. Prepworks by Progressive Magnetic Measuring Spoons, Stainless Steel – Set of 5

2. The Garject Garlic Press

The Garject Garlic Press

Photo Credit: Dreamfarm

The Garject takes the concept of the self-cleaning garlic press two steps further with its ability to press unpeeled garlic, as well as a built-in lever to eject the peel. It also comes in several colors.  Dreamfarm Garject – Self-Cleaning Garlic Press with Peel Eject (Red)

3. The CO2  Wine Bottle Opener

CO2 Propelled Wine Bottle Opener

Photo Credit: Cork Pops

CO2 is carbon dioxide, the same stuff we exhale with every breath and apparently, it also makes opening wine bottles really easy. This bottle opener is designed with two small blades on the inside that you turn around the top of the bottle to slice the foil off the top. The needle then pokes through the cork and you push the top to add a blast of pressurized CO2 into the bottle, making the cork pop out.  Cork Pops CO2 Propelled Wine Bottle Opener, Giovanni Collection

4.The All-Clad Immersion Blender 

All-Clad Immersion Blender

Aside from varying wattage and function controls, the basic design for immersion blenders has remained essentially unchanged. The money feature about this design is the longer shaft that works with deeper pots and bowls.  All-Clad KZ750D Stainless Steel Immersion Blender with Detachable Shaft and Variable Speed Control Dial, 600-Watts, Silver

5. The Williams-Sonoma Ultimate Carving Board

The Williams-Sonoma Ultimate Carving Board

Photo Credit: Williams-Sonoma

With a price tag that’s over $200, this one’s a bit pricey, not gonna lie. But when you can take the roast beast straight from the oven to the carving board without even having to lift it off the roasting rack, that’s impressive.  Made of American black walnut with a custom-fitted stainless steel rack. Exclusively at Williams-Sonoma.com.

Cooking and feeding others is a noble act. Show some love for the cook in your life, especially if that cook is you!

 

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Tartan Plaid Potted Cyclamen

Using Fall Fashion’s Trendy Plaids at Home

Though plaids and checks are pretty standard for fall and the holidays, there’s just something about about the cool air and brightly colored leaves that makes us reach for the cozy and familiar.

This year, checks, tartans and plaids dominated the fall / winter fashion runways – in everything from plaids at Stella McCartney, to buffalo checks at Dior.  It has been said, as fashion goes, so goes the rest of the world. In keeping with that sentiment, here’s a round-up of some easy ways to incorporate this year’s top fashion trend for fall and winter into your home.

The Bedroom

Ever since watching the first “Home Alone” movie many years ago, I’ve been intrigued by the idea of styling the bedroom for the holidays. What better way than with a cozy flannel tartan plaid duvet cover and shams?

Land’s End Velvet Flannel Plaid Duvet Cover and Shams in classic tartan plaid ($109 – $169)

Land's End Velvet Flannel Plaid Duvet and Shams

Photo Credit: Land’s End

The Dining Room

There’s nothing quite like a festive table to set the right tone for a holiday meal. Spiking your dinner table’s holiday factor by ditching the formal silverware in favor of some plaid-etched flatware is a safe bet.

Plaid-Etched Flatware

Tartan-Etched Flatwear

Photo Credit: Houzz

If you’re looking to make a statement with your holiday table not only this year but for years to come, consider investing plaid dinnerware.  Bright and cheerful, yet easy, plaid plates are the set it and forget it option that will work hard from Thanksgiving all the way to New Year’s Eve.

Lenox Winter Greetings Plaid 5 Piece Place Setting

Lenox Plaid Plates

Photo Credit: Lenox

The Tree

Because it’s just not Christmas without ornaments…

Waterford Green Plaid Heart Ornament

Waterford Plaid Heart Ornament

Photo Credit: Waterford

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Suzanne Kasler Mackenzie Plaid Ornaments – Set of 12 $89

Suzanne Kasler Mackenzie Plaid Ornaments

Photo Credit: Ballard Designs

Taking the Chill Off

Coming in from the cold is even better when you get to sip your favorite hot beverage in a plaid monogrammed mug.

Pottery Barn Plaid Alphabet Mugs $8 each

Plaid Alphabet Mugs

Photo Credit: Pottery Barn

 

 

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freestanding wall

4 Paths to a Multi-functional Work Space

The need for a multi-functional work space is fast becoming the norm in the modern office space. As a result, the challenge of making offices conducive to collaborative, independent and free-address work styles is the new order in workspace design.

1. One approach is to create separate areas within the larger space. Often the cost, building codes and disruption involved make this option prohibitive.

Enclosure 4008 / Seeyond

Enclosure 4008 / Seeyond

Using freestanding, non-structural partial enclosures such as these, not only addresses those issues they can also be moved to accommodate future changes or relocation. Custom made from 100% recyclable lightweight thermoplastic resin, these by Seeyond require no tools to assemble they can be customized further with graphic light and sound options.

2. Despite all the hype around open plan concepts, a more pressing concern has emerged around the need for spaces in which to do focused work. In her bestselling book, Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World that Can’t Stop Talking, author Susan Cain suggests that 90% of workers say they need quiet, private spaces at work. Over 40% say they don’t have them.

Steelcase has taken the research seriously enough to have collaborated with the author to develop a collection of five fully integrated  work space designs that support specific postures, work styles, quiet and privacy.

3. Probably the most common way to render a work space more versatile is to reconfigure it into separate zones. Modular storage systems such as Territory by Inscape Solutions, is designed for those ever-changing work space needs. What’s new here is the easy mobility and maximum flexibility while keeping important documents and items close at hand.

Edison Electric Height-adjustable table

Edison Electric Height-adjustable table by VersaTables.com

4. Finally this list would not be complete without mentioning the work surface height option. Simply adding or replacing stationary desks or tables with adjustable-height work surfaces may be all that’s needed. Aside from the reported health and psychological benefits of varying task heights, the truth is people come in all sizes and not all tasks are better executed sitting down. The Edison Electric Height-adjustable table lifts and lowers with the touch of a button. It accommodates one or two users at a time and comes with an array of customizable features.

There are many options for making the most out of an existing space. These are only four, but the choices have never been more plentiful than they are today. The returns on the investment will be well worth it.

*This article is not sponsored.

 

 

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