Archives For product design

Building on my recent talk of sketchbooks and organizational systems, now seems like an appropriate time to share a series which outlines a week in the lives of thirteen artists, designers and thinkers. Organized by I.D. Magazine to demonstrate the versatility of Moleskine’s new folio collection of sketchbooks, the series was exhibited this past April during the 2009 Milan Design Week.

Here are a few of the sketchbooks from the series:

Designer/illustrator, Marian Bantjes

Fashion designer, Han Feng

Graphic designer and author, Jessica Helfand

Industrial Designer, Ayse Birsel

What would a week in your life look like, dear readers?


28/10/2009 — Leave a comment

I have another confession to make, Internet. I am terrible at picking out tables– I put it off as long as I can, I will buy a couch before picking out a table, and even then it takes me six months to commit to a couch.

When I lived in Denver, I went months and months without a table, not even a desk! I had kitchen counters and a side table, that was as flat as it got in my home.

But lo! I have found a table that I would gladly welcome into my home; behold:

I swear my fascination with this table has nothing to do with the year I spent living across from a ball bearing factory. Ok, maybe just a little bit.

What’s your idea of the perfect table? And are there any items of furniture you find it difficult to select?

Building on an earlier theme of friends and former classmates, today I thought I’d share the fabulous work of another buddy from my college days at Carnegie Mellon. When I think about it, the CMU connection theme could easily become a feature unto itself on AmandaMuses, but we’ll just see, I guess…

Anyway, Josh Urso, another product of the Carnegie Mellon Design program, produces stunning furniture in his New Jersey studio. Since the opening of his design studio in 2002, Josh continues to produce items that explore the limitations of material and structure. His work, inspired by mechanical processes and new materials, inspires curiosity and a playful enjoyment of daily life.

I love his Ant Farm lights and Knoop tables, and of course the incredible Specter chair– I remember Josh’s prototype senior year in college watching the evolution of this amazing object come to life. He took limp cloth and made it live with resin and sheer inventive brilliance.

It has been many years since I have been in touch with Josh, but from the look of his Web site, he is doing splendidly.

Images: Josh Urso Design

For the 34th year in a row, the American Craft Council (ACC) will hold its annual San Francisco show this weekend at the Fort Mason Center!

If you have never been to an ACC show, boy have you been missing out! This year’s San Francisco show will feature 250 national artists who have traveled to the Bay area to show and sell their latest and greatest– furniture, clothing, jewelry, decor (a list of exhibitors is available on the show page organized by medium).

Over the years, I have been to many of the ACC shows in Baltimore and seen an AMAZING range of work and art. By attending these shows, I have met artists whose work has enriched my life, enlivened my home and even inspired my own work.


  • The American Craft Council Show in San Francisco
  • at the Fort Mason Center (vague directions available here— but if you’ve never been there, it’s a pretty walk along the water past Fisherman’s Wharf– the view from the hill above is gorgeous!)
  • Friday, August 14; 10am – 8pm
    Saturday, August 15; 10am – 6 pm
    Sunday, August 16; 10 am – 5 pm
  • Tickets are $12/person or $18 for a two-day pass. And since they’ve extended the Friday evening hours to 8pm, tickets for Friday night only are $5 after 5pm; a SCREAMING deal, if you ask me. OR if you know you’re going and want to save a few bucks, why not buy your tickets ahead of time at a slight discount here.

Not a Bay area resident? Fear not, faithful reader. There are other ACC shows around the nation throughout the year.

For the rest of the 2009 year the ACC shows are as follows:
San Francisco, CA Aug. 14-16, 2009
Charlotte, NC Nov. 6-8, 2009
Sarasota, FL Dec. 4-6, 2009

For 2010, the ACC shows are as follows:
Baltimore, MD Feb. 25-28, 2010
Atlanta, GA Mar. 12-14, 2010
St. Paul, MN Apr. 16-18 , 2010
San Francisco, CA Aug. 6-8, 2010

Hopefully, you can check at least one of the ACC shows in the next year!

The world is a little darker without one of the most brilliant contemporary American designers… He made things better, beautiful and fun… He was an incredible artist and designer..


04/05/2007 — Leave a comment

Looks like Future Design Days is going nomadic… what are the chances of meetings outside of Sweden, I wonder.. Italy and Asia seem like likely possibilities, but we’ll just see i guess..

Have been spending a lot of time lately with Nick Bantock’s work – which has triggered two things in me – wanderlust and a desire to spend exorbitant amounts of time making art instead of my day job…