Another light game

Just following on from the previous post I decided that I quite liked this picture too…

The shadows on the wall from my fingers kind of make it look like light is shooting from my hands, like I’m playing with a forcefield or a ball of plasma (the state of matter, not blood plasma)


The Incidental Purchase

Because Ros has a bit of a book fetish we have run out of bookshelf space. There are just slightly over two thousand books hanging around in our 2 bedroom flat. There are also 350 of my DVD’s which take up valuable book space. Consequently it was necessary to buy more space… cue a trip to Ikea to buy DVD shelves for the hallway media overspill zone.

Whilst we were there we remembered that we needed a new liquid soap dispenser for the kitchen. What we found were these…

They’re called Limmaren and come in a 4 pack containing a dispenser, a bottle, a jar and soap dish, all really nice thick glass for only £7.99 which is about $11 – I think this a pretty good bargain. I really like the look of seeing the liquid soap inside the bottle, and the pump mechanism sucking it out when the top is depressed.

The blue soap also throws quite pretty shadows on the white tiles too!

They’re just cheap and stylish – bonus!


After riding a train for what seemed like 3 days and queuing up to see and unnerving official I am pleased to report that my new passport has arrived. This is most pleasing because:

  1. I can go to Moldova on a charity project in a fortnight
  2. It is quite a beautifully designed document
  3. When I go abroad I’ll be leaving the EU so I’ll get STAMPS!
  4. Its biometric so I can now stand in an automatic booth and have my face scanned to cross the UK border
  5. I can choose to upload an iris scan onto it for even more snazzy ways to let the government know where I am
Now it’s really very illegal to reproduce images of my own passport so you’ll have to make do the the Home Office official example images. I’ve uploaded them super big that you can see all the fine detailing….
Above in the front page and the rather neat but pompous instruction to any interested ‘foreigners’ that they’d better bloody well be nice to us or else (or else what? Good question)
Every middle page then had a different iconic british image, in this case the Giants Causeway in Northern Ireland and Durdle Door in Dorset. If you look closely you’ll see its all based on a weather theme – see the little weather forecast symbols in the top corners, a thermometer near the centre fold and across the page are pressure isobars which let you figure out the windspeed and hot/cold fronts. If you look really really closely you’ll see the words ‘United Kingdom’ in sort of 3D text in the background – you have to cross you’re eyes a bit though, its a bit like one of those magic eye things from the 1990’s.
This is the ID page, which now isn’t at the back – its on page 2 oddly. There’s a pretty looking compass embossed and laid ontop of the photo, and the waves are hologramatic silver that shimmers blue and black. If you look at the blurry printed imagine on the top side you’ll see that its actually made up of the persons name in tiny writing, and beneath that the bird is made up on tiny ‘United Kingdom’s’ over and over again. Oh and hiding in the background in brown is a map of the whole country.
Obviously some folks have gone to alot of trouble to make the document as secure and tamper-proof as possible, and, probably almost accidentally they’ve created a work of art too.

Cool Clothes Roundup

There seem to be rather alot of sales on at the moment. I suppose its indicative of our new economic reality, but its annoying as there’s a fair amount of stuff that I’d like to pounce on (‘but Ros, look its half price – I’d be saving money’) – unfortunately I have a profound sense of guilt, and annoyingly strong self control.

As some sort of catharsis or purgation I offer the following roundup of stuff that I would buy if I was a spendthrift.

Number 1: Rad Hourani 

So its probably worth noting before you baulk at some of his designs that Rad Hourani designs exclusively unisex clothes – that clothes that are designed to look good on both men and women – have about 12 items in their sale and these are my picks…

This is a sort of combo t-shirt and jacket. The jacket splits off from the t-shirt at the shoulders but is fully attached. It looks nice and lightweight but is also loose enough to accommodate mens wider shoulders without looking ‘blocky’ as the contrasting jacket draws the eye downwards.

Ok so theres no real getting away from the fact that these look alot like a skirt over a pair of leggings – and in fairness thats basically what they are. However, the ‘skirt’ is actually a front panel that accommodates a couple of pockets and the leggings are really viscose trousers. I like the shape and with the right tshirt and possibly boots they’d look pretty awesome. He does do some decent looking boots, but they’re a bit to feminine for my liking – and they’re not on sale.

Number 2: Christopher Kane

Christopher Kane does a pretty decent line in colourful fitted t-shirts and jumpers that are printed with Hubble Space Telescope images (as well as an awesome Gorilla).

First up is this jumper that depicts a nebulous area of the galaxy some 20,000 lightyears away thats been dubbed a ‘star nursery’. Forget any mental images you might have of tiny little toddler stars, this nebula is thousands of lightyears across. Why wouldn’t anyone want to wear a tribute to such a remarkable bit of nature?

Same kinda thing above but a t-shirt. Enough said really.

Number 3: Topman

Arcadia Group stores do seem to have a permanent sale on (a bit like a classier and more interesting version of DFS). Anyway, their stuff is mostly definitely within my ‘on a whim’ price range that doesn’t require permission from The Rosalind.

These are only £8 and they’re a really cool fusion of ’60’s black horn-rimmed style glasses and more modern bright colours. And for only £8 I think I might make them mine!!

Update: Anyone thats interested – these are the links:

Rad for the sale stuff and for his latest collection which includes some really rather provocative unisex shorts….

Topman for the red glasses.



Tokyoflash produce watches.

Lots of companies produce watches, but these guys have dozens of the coolest designs you can imagine. Not just in terms of shape or colour but in new and creative ways of displaying the time.

I like them because they’re something thats different enough to be interesting but no so outlandish as to be completely ridiculous – like for example strapping twelve pigeons to your wrist and telling the time by how often you get shat on (some people may actually like that, this is a non-judgemental blog).

I think this is really quite cool, not only that but you can probably pretend that you’re a secret agent, and no one else will be able to peer at your wrist on the bus and figure out the time.

Its not astronomically expensive either at just over £100.

They have some other interesting designs too…

For more details go to their website….

Space Shuttle Jetsons Car

My interest in cars is not enormous. I tend to think that they’ll probably bugger the planet/humanity/environment. However, they are extremely useful. I presently own a Fiat 500 which is a sort of modernised retro car which was stylish a couple of years ago but is now ubiquitous.

However, if I ever manage to store up enough money (£18,000) I would very much like a Honda CR-Z. Why? Well if you’re going to drive a car it may as well be a good looking one. Now I’m sure (and I’ve mentioned this before) that we were promised amazing cityscape and flying pollution free cars in a global utopia, so I’d like a car that, whilst not being pollution free, at least looks a little like a spaceship and the CR-Z definitely looks like some sort of little sub-orbital shuttlecraft.

If the publicity shot is anything to go by it even comes with a modernist urban landscape – perfect!

It doesn’t only do urban landscapes though – it also does blurry American mid-west vistas too.

Now driving a spaceship on ordinary roads is no good if the inside looks like a car, fortunately Honda have that covered too…

Now it must be understood that the speedometer is actually in thousands of mph, and the little set of symbols to the bottom right is something to do with landing on the moon (probably).

The best bit is that this isn’t a concept car, its a real one that can be purchased right now, but I make no warranty as to whether it can actually go into space. I highly recommend that use some simple safety measures before trying, hell – at least take some oxygen with you just in case.

Furguson Hill Speakers

Ok so after talking about a whole bunch of stuff that I want, I thought that it wouldn’t be too ostentatious to discuss something which I already own.

A few years ago I saw an article in Macworld about a new set of iPod speakers that were made from acrylic bent into horn shapes. They had a promotion on for readers whereby you got a free subwoofer otherwise priced at £299 so I bought the whole package instantly.

The sound quality is like nothing I’ve heard before or since, crisp and clear but with enough power to make things interesting. People have described the experience as thought the band or orchestra were actually in the room with you. They not so good with rock or ‘busy’ music, but for jazz, classical and soul they’re stunning.

I guess what drew me to them was the horn shape, its modern, clean, (and transparent) whilst also harking back to an old style gramophone. They always remind me of the ‘His Masters Voice’ dog.

Here they are in the publicity shot, unfortunately my desk is not so chic.

And thats what they look like in my lounge (I’m using them as Apple Airplay speakers).

Now, if your super-rich the company also make man sized speakers for extremely trendy loft apartments in London. I’m sure they’re not that strict as to their usage, but you get the idea. They’re really quite something. The price is quite something too at £10,000 a pair.

More details here

Smeg Fridge/Freezers

To complete the trio of posts for each of my design categories I present the following on the glory of SMEG fridge/freezers.

Let me just lay out my cards, I don’t own one of these so I don’t know if they work as good as they look – but I do know that I would really very much like one.

I could try and justify my fridge lust with some fancy verbiage, or poetry, but I think that in this case pictures are worth more so here goes:

Just look at them. They’re beautiful. I really like that chunky 50’s aesthetic. From a design perspective they’re often integrated into modern kitchens as a sort of nod to retro-futuristic hopefulness.

Also, they just look a bit different from the usual white/grey boxes that the vast majority of us have. They allow a bit of colour in the kitchen without looking gaudy or out of place.

Of course, they also cost well over a thousand pounds so it’ll be a little while before I get one! There are other things on my list first!

Pictures and more details can be found at

PS retro-futuristic…. that might well be an oxymoron.