Caged-Stone Facade - No Clichés of Architecture

Dominus Winery by Herzog & de Meuron (Yountville, California, 1997).
Swiss architecture duo Herzog & De Meuron are equal parts mystery and legend. They are one of the most prolific and well-respected firms in contemporary architecture, yet they don’t even have a website. (Best fact gleaned over the years: the pair met in kindergarten.)
Herzog & de Meuron’s first project in the United States was Dominus Winery, a private commission in Napa Valley. The so-called ‘stealth winery’ is low-slung and horizontal, a typical building style in the area, with a trump card of a curtain wall: reinforced concrete and gabion cladding on steel tube frame supporting baskets filled with basalt rocks from a nearby canyon.

The stainless steel baskets on the facade are both an aesthetic and technical choice that typify Herzog & de Meuron’s rich yet minimalist approach: “Generally used to retain dirt along highways,” in this case the gabions moderate the extreme temperatures of wine-growing valleys north of San Francisco.
Jacques Herzog, upon winning the Pritzker Prize in 2001, compared their work to that of Andy Warhol: ”He used common Pop images to say something new. That is exactly what we are interested in: to use well known forms and materials in a new way so that they become alive again … We love to destroy the clichés of architecture.”

From Architecture Week: “Variation in the wire mesh density and in the size of fill rock are finely orchestrated to a classical gravitational theme, with the strength of high-density mesh and close-packed rock establishing robustness at the base, then a middle then of more open mesh with close-packed rock for the main wall, capped by a top band with the more open spacing of larger rock.”
Onto the Dominus descendants:

Rock Office by a21 Studio (Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, 2007)

New generation of sports cars

After two and a half years of development Donkervoort Automobielen in Lelystad – in close collaboration with quattro GmbH, fully owned subcompany of the AUDI AG – has presented the next generation of open sports cars: the Donkervoort GTO. A combination of beautiful shape, the latest auto techniques and the ultimate experience.
With a capacity of 340 to 400 HP and a torque of 450 Nm from about 1600 RPMs. And all this with a total weight of around 700 kilos. Without a doubt one of the fastest sports cars on the European market. And, with the first private preview for Donkervoort Ambassadors from all over Europe, received so enthusiastically that within a few hours approximately half of the first 25 specially designed GTOs were sold. The GTO is clearly a size larger than its predecessors, the closed GT and the open D8 270RS. About 35 centimetres longer and 15 centimetres wider, to be exact. Necessary to accommodate the massive, longitudinally placed, five cylinder 340 hp 2.5 TFSI AUDI AG motor and at the same time realise an astonishing balance in the design.

The GTO is therefore a brand-new designed car. Only sharing 5% of the parts with the D8 270RS and about 30% with the much more recent GT. A milestone in the 34-year history of Donkervoort. With techniques directly derived from the aviation and aerospace industry. The first in a new generation of Donkervoort automobiles, according to Joop Donkervoort. The reason he also put the chassis number back to ‘0’ starting with the GTO.

What are the Advantages of Reclaimed Wood in Home Improvement Furniture?

It's stated by a lot of that reclaimed wood is beautiful, eco-friendly, durable and many valuable wood readily available for contractors that already attached included in old building. Reclaimed wood could be costly, it can also add a lot of quality to some floor or timber-frame structure.

Reclaimed wood has some advantages in comparison to new wood, like the great thing about dense grain, a visible richness from natural weathering, stability regarding towards the lengthy decade of cropping, and sturdy or durable lumber due to its dense grain.

Since reclaimed wood gathered couple decades ago, it will have environment advantages too. The deforestation of selected wood could be decreased using the old wood from abandoned material like destroyed factory, old rail road, patio decking, or shipbuilding. Using the environment benefits of reclaimed wood that provide the upkeep of recyclable resource, combined with the structural and aesthetic advantages, causes it to be a distinctive and precious.

As you solution designed for the wood lover, reclaimed wood is the best for hardwood floors and indoor or outside home furniture today. The maturing lumber produces a warmth atmosphere towards the room attached.

A factor which own should have a very good treatment to have it lengthy lasting even when it's a sturdy factor. Additionally, it happened to reclaimed wood as furniture, hardwood floors or deck. If they're treated correctly, they provide beauty and usage for the following generation. Besides, by recycling the abandoned one, it provides a contribution to decelerate the climatic change world problem.

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Focus Fireplaces

Today I would like to bring you Dominique Imbert and his "Focus" on fireplace design.
"Following his roving studies and an adventurous existence between the Sorbonne in Paris and the subways of Manhattan, one day in 1967, Dominique Imbert decided to set up a sculpture workshop at the foot of the Cevennes, north of Montpellier. The crumbling building he settled in had neither a roof nor windows that closed, so, prompted by the cold, he created a steel fireplace for his own use. On seeing it, visitors wanted one for themselves.
And so, Focus was born."
Here are some of his simply beautiful designs:

Architecture and Interior Design for Stores

Before you redesign your retail store, restaurant, or business, you will need to do a little research. Indeed, you can get ideas from going around and looking at what other people have done, or going through Architectural Digest magazine. You might also peruse the trade publications. And there are several books on the topic. In fact, there is one great book that I'd like to recommend to you, the name of that book is:

"Stores of the Year - A Pictorial Report on Store Interiors" Edited by Martin M. Pegler, Retail Reporting Corporation, New York, NY, (1981), 175 pages, ISBN: 0934590-08-5.

There are sections in this book on facades and storefronts, and how you might go about designing your counters for fashion accessories, jewelry, cosmetics, or even women's shoes and sportswear. If you want to attract the younger generation there is information in this book to. If you wish to have a shop within a shop, or do some co-branding with additional counters there is a wealth of information and some very good ideas as well as some pictorials.

If you sell something such as intimate apparel ware and lingerie, there is definitely a right way and a wrong way to design a counter, and sales floor. Accentuating the undergarments in a high-class and stylish way prevents them from looking cheap, and it will help you command a higher price tag. And that just doesn't go for women's intimate apparel, but also men's sportswear, young men and boys at tire, or even close for children.

If you run a retail store which sells gourmet kitchen appliances, glass and china, or specialty gifts there is a whole section on that with many pictures. In this book you will learn how to display Linen and bath accessories, and high-end luggage. If you are a bookseller or a music seller there are interesting sections on that as well.

If you run a restaurant, fast food establishment, or coffee shop there are great design ideas in this book, great illustrations, and great retail merchandising techniques and tactics. If you are running a large department store or a small business boutique there is information for everyone. Also there are quite a few floor plans which help the reader understand how to make it all come together.

From Neiman Marcus to Nordstroms, and from a small coffee shop to a large bookstore, no matter what you are trying to do in your business, this is absolutely one book you need to have. It will give you ideas and a basic understanding of retail merchandising, interior design, and architecture. Please consider all this.

Coffee and Dining Table for Small Spaces

This interesting and inspiring furniture design for small space was brought to you by Sculrtures Jeux, An Expandable coffee and dining tables furniture that is now available and ready to decorate your small rooms space. You don’t have to be worried cause this small furniture design is practically have an expandable construction which can be transformed into a large and very useful furniture to store all your accecories. This contemporary wooden tables furniture have an interesting design covers with natural touch and finishing.
This expandable coffee table furniture could make your interior space more functional yet comfortable. Every coffee and dining table has several sliding tops, which are easy to adjust. With such models you could have a table of the size, which you need in the moment. The dining table with 4 additional sliding tops could become a perfect versatile work area and indispensable item in your kitchen.

Coffee and Dining Tables by Sculrtures Jeux

For more:

In the Celebration of Mitra, the God of Light

From this moment on, the days start to get longer and we see more light at least for the next six months. In celebration of Mitra's birth, the God of light, here I present some creative and inspiring lighting designs.

20 Modern Lights Design For Brighter Future
Lighting from Andromeda
20 Modern Lights Design For Brighter Future
The Icarus Light is designed by Tord Boontje
20 Modern Lights Design For Brighter Future
Nastro Light from Andromeda
20 Modern Lights Design For Brighter Future
The AMEBA Light by Pete Sans

conceptual lighting system by Billy May

Patterned Light Fixtures by Sha-do


Designing a Better Hospital Room

When Michael Graves, the American architect and designer, found himself paralyzed, he began to notice design flaws in hospital rooms. He sketched ideas for improving hospital buildings, rooms, and furniture. In 2009, the products he designed became available through a partnership with Stryker, a hospital furnishing company.
The products are simple, logical improvements of the usual furniture found in patient rooms, such as a bedside cabinet with rounded edges, handles, a two way-drawer and an integrated trash can that fits under the bedside table (a favorite of hospital staff). The line also includes a chair with larger handles, to make it easier for patients to hoist themselves up, an overbed table, and a bedside stand with a large handle.

For more and Michael Graves TED Talk:

Apple Dumplings

This might be one of the yummiest (is this even a word?), but not-good-for-you-at-all recipes I'll post on here.  These apple dumplings are delicious but with 2 sticks of butter and a can of Mountain Dew, well, I might have a diabetic attack just typing up the recipe.

2 granny smith apples
2 cans of crescent rolls
2 sticks of butter
1 cup of sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon 
1 can (12 oz) Mountain Dew

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Grease a 9x13 in pan

Peel and slice each apple into 8 pieces

Separate the crescent rolls into the pre-cut triangles.  Roll apple slice in crescent roll.

Place the dumplings in the greased pan.

Melt butter in a small sauce pan.  Stir in sugar and cinnamon to the melted butter, then pour over the dumplings.  

Pour the Mountain Dew over dumplings.

Bake for 35 minutes or until golden brown. During this time, your house will smell amazing.  I love cooking with cinnamon just for the wonderful smell. 

And then, after enjoying one or 5 of these, go run 18 miles to work off all those delicious calories. 

A Ceiling Landscape

Made of metal and acrylic, the angled W&W lights fit into the suspended ceiling structure just like regular tiles but instead provide light from one or all sides.
materials : metal & PMMA
dimensions : 60x60cm modules, 5 different models


How to Select a Stylish Bedroom Wardrobe?

Getting a structured living area for me personally is paramount to satisfaction. For other people just getting items to match likewise helps to have their day began. A wardrobe is a the greatest bits of furniture inside your bed room. The way it looks might matter to your space it requires up might as well. Choosing the best kind of wardrobe might be a challenge discover certain of what's available or are uncertain about what you would like. Doing scientific studies are crucial in choosing the best product for both you and your room in the best cost which can be found.

Another factor to think about when selecting a wardrobe is to live. Your housing constraints is likely to determine the kind of furniture you've. Whenever you have only a lot of sq ft inside your bed room a bigger wardrobe will not be appropriate for that space due to the fact it is not the only real factor that needs to use your bed room. Going to numerous different stores may also make your mind up simpler by supplying you with lots of more options to select from. Your financial allowance can also be another factor to bear in mind because it can impact your choice.

Wood is a very common materials for armoires and liked by lots who wardrobe proprietors. The standard of wood is generally very durable, lengthy lasting and made to endure a lot of things. When choosing your wardrobe you might want to consider wood. You will find various kinds of wood including oak, birch, walnut, cherry, pine and elm. These are merely a couple of of the numerous forest you could enjoy as the bed room wardrobe. A finished wood is great simply because they keep scratches away and is actually super durable and resistant.

Space is really a major problem for most people. A wardrobe is generally regarded as a bigger object and noted for trying out a reasonable quantity of space. Although this might be true for many armoires there's still expect individuals who don't put on the area but nonetheless desire a wardrobe. Selecting a more compact wardrobe doesn't only save space inside your bed room additionally, it requires less set up and moving when all this has been made by you. Getting a small wardrobe won't build your appear room bigger but it will likewise accent your living space nicely departing space for the imagination to decorate.

Ultimately when choosing a wardrobe for the bed room you would like convenience. Discovering it in a nice cost is excellent too. It's not necessary to spend lots of money either because you will find armoires created for both you and your budget. Comprise does not need to happen either, if you're able to think it they virtually allow it to be and it is really your decision to locate the ideal design and get it. Choosing an ideal wardrobe for the bed room is often as simple like a web search and maybe even each day on the market. Whatever it may be there's an ideal wardrobe available for the all you want do is think it is.

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Inverted Warehouse-Townhouse by Dean-Wolf Architects

An addition and renovation of a multi-level Tribeca loft in New York, with "three double story voids [that] animate the missing 'garden' of the townhouse providing light, air, and visual contemplation."

"Admitting light and townhouse "garden" uses, these new spaces provide the structure for domestic life. Exterior court, reading court, and playroom are suspended into the void."
Photos: Paul Warchol.

A Not-So-Perfect Christmas Tree

I was so excited to decorate for Christmas this year, but so unprepared.  I didn't own ONE Christmas decoration. And for some reason, I thought I'd be able to find lights, decorations, etc after Thanksgiving.  I was so wrong.

I couldn't find any white lights.  I did find blue lights, but I bought them from two different stores and they don't quite match. (Picture below).  I couldn't find a tree skirt I liked, so my tree has no skirt.  I couldn't find a tree topper I liked, so I attempted to make my own bow.  After an hour of trying to make a fancy bow following a YouTube video, I gave up and made a bow the best way I know how - cutting strips, making loops, and tying it all up together.  Anyways, here's my tree and it's ok to laugh:

I kinda like my tree the best with no lights on.  But, it's not even and leans toward the wall behind it.  Poor tree. I tried, I really did.

My homemade tree topper.

I wasn't kidding when I said my lights were two different shades of blue.  The middle strand is LED, the other two are not.  I didn't think it would make that big of a difference. Um, it did.  I looked every where for more blue lights, and couldn't find any, so I went with what I had in order to decorate the tree before the new year.

I have a wreath on the front door and that's it for the outside.  I'm just thinking of my first time decoration for Christmas as a learning experience.  Main takeaway, buy decorations as soon as they put them out before Halloween.  I also plan on looking around to see what I can find on sale after Christmas.  

And friends, we have 9 ft ceilings.  Jon didn't believe me when I said we should get a taller tree.  We brought it home and he realized we could have gotten a taller tree.  And next year, we're getting a taller tree.

But, my Christmas will still be merry, even without the perfect tree! 

2011 Tokyo Motor Show

credit: Jacob Gordon
The 2011 Tokyo Motor Show took place in Japan's capital city December 3-11.
First up, Toyota. The car manufacturer pulled the wraps off its FCV-R concept car for the first time during the show's press days. This sizable sedan runs on a hydrogen fuel cell power plant which Toyota claims can propel the FCV-R for 430 miles between hydrogen fillups.
Japan's leading automaker has been tinkering with conceptual fuel cell cars for some time, as first seen in the Fine-N back in 2005.
credit: Jacob Gordon
Honda staked out a large presence at this year's Tokyo Motor Show, and debuted a number of concepts for the first time.
Among those was this tiny Micro Commuter concept car. Intended strictly for zipping around the urban core, this Tron-esq three-seater maxes out at 37 miles per hour.

credit: Jacob Gordon
We've been following BMW's electrification for a while, but it was quite stunning to see the dramatic i8 plug-in diesel hybrid sports car in person this week in Tokyo.
What is it about gull-wing doors that always makes my body temperature go up a little? The i8 is a concept car, yes, but BMW insists its on track to bring it to production by 2013.
Under the hood is a 3-cylinder diesel engine that is mated to two electric motors. This combo can supposedly make the jump from 0-60 miles per hour in an fantastic 4.8 seconds, with a total range of 430 miles.

credit: Jacob Gordon
We've seen previous iterations of the Nissan Pivo.
Now in its third incarnation, Nissan showed the tiny commuter EV concept in Tokyo this week. While the Pivo III has lost its bubble shape, it has retained its ability to control each wheel independently, giving the car the ability to squeeze into otherwise-impossible parking spaces and maneuver in our increasingly jammed cities.

credit: Jacob Gordon
If you didn't think a station wagon deserved both gull-wing and suicide doors, take a gander at the Subaru Advanced Tourer concept that is on display in Tokyo this week.
Under the hood is a horizontally opposed boxer engine hooked to a single-motor hybrid system. And since it's a Subaru wagon, it has to be all-wheel drive.

Here is the Suzuki Q Concept. The Q - which apparently draws its name from its exterior form - is described as a new kind of mobility that's "positioned between motorcycles and cars." Designed primarily for urban use, the car is only 8.2-feet long, is purportedly "ideal for trips under 10 km." Tandem seating for two is provided, though Suzuki says the smaller rear seat can be folded flat to provide enough cargo space for use as a delivery vehicle
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Oreo Bark

Oreo Bark is the easiest treat I have ever made. And it only requires two ingredients.  TWO!

12 oz. white chocolate chips
15 Oreos

Melt the white chips in a double boiler.  If you are like me, you might not have a double boiler.  Don't worry, there's an easy way around it.  Find a bowl that can handle heat and place it in a pot of water.  I forgot to snap a picture of it, but here's an example I found via Google.

The most important part of melting chocolate is to keep stirring it until its all melted.  Once it's melted, either remove the bowl or pour the melted white chocolate into a bowl and let cool for 5 minutes.

While the chocolate is cooling, break Oreos into fourths.  Mix into melted chocolate and spread out on parchment paper in a cookie sheet or in a 9x13 inch pan.

Let cool for 10-15 minutes, then break the bark up with a fork or knife.

I packed these treats up into little festive bags and gave out to co-workers.  I hope they enjoyed it! 

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