Archives for category: Design

Hands down, my favourite thing to put on my bottom half has to be my Voronoi pant. When I put em on, I can’t stop stroking my thighs and putting my hands on my ass pockets in brazen displays of public self-love. It’s simply because the fabric feels so fucking good. It’s like the smoothest twill evar! In the light, the charcoal colour takes on a slight greencast or yellowcast depending on the angle, iridescent like mother of pearl. The weight is fucking nonexistent and yet, it stands up to abuse. The roomy top block means I can stuff more food in my face whilst the trimmed down legs and silhouette ensure I am forever sexy. You fucking wish you were stroking the inside of my ass pocket. I’ve had various other favourite pants/shorts in the course of my life but these are simply the best. Time worn denim jeans, $10 camo print shorts, tailored performance, high fashunz… whatever.

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And then we have the Blazer LT, which is so BAWSE LEVEL. I rook rike Bae Yong Joon is what it’s like. It’s the perfect blazer for me. Informal, with a slightly crinkly fabric that still manages to look crispy and sharp. It’s like my Raf blazer, except better. It’s lightweight, breathable, water (at least until the next reproof) and wind resistant. There’s also no visible external shit. No buttons, no noticeable pockets. Nothing. You don’t notice my wallet or my phone hanging there. There’s not even snap buttons. For stealth purposes, Veilance prefers to use these slide buttons that make little noise. The collar pops beautiful too. Worn open, it’s like fashunz. Worn closed, it’s like I’m so seriouz.

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Next up, we be gettin’ da Insulated Field Jacket and probably a Graph Sweater plus Component Shirt.

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Get da grease. This is my realistic dream list of cars. If I find one in excellent condition for real money. I’m down. I’ve set myself a budget but it’s pretty broad at the moment. If I wanna save some money but have some fun, I’d risk a R33/34. If I wanted brand spankin’ new with all the shizzle, I’d stump up for a Golf. When I fall into money, I’m getting a Hakosuka.

90s Coupes

  1. R33/34 Skyline
  2. MR2
  3. 180SX/240SX
  4. Supra
  5. E30

Newer Cars

  1. Golf 6/7
  2. Polo GTI
  3. A1
  4. A3 Cabriolet
  5. 86

In My Dreams

  1. 2000GT
  2. 510/1600
  3. Hakosuka
  4. 240Z
  5. Corolla SR5

So what’s keeping me up at night right now? Fuckin’ ads on J-Spec and videos from Petrolicious in particular.

That last one should be me. He’s even stolen my fuckin’ name ffs.

A long time ago, I made a post listing my watch progression. It went like this eventually. I like totally stopped liking subs.

  1. Casio Databank Calculator Watch CA53W
  2. Casio G-Shock GW5600J
  3. Uniform Wares 103 Gray
  4. Seiko SNN233

And it stopped dead. Well, I’ve just been lusting after a lot of watches, some wayyyy out of my league but still, a boy can dream can’t he? Anyway, here’s my updated list. I’ve added a few. Most are pretty classic and simple but beautiful yet functional. My tastes tend toward the boring I suppose. Note that some of the pictures are not of the exact model but visually are exactly the same. Pics ripped shamelessly from google image search.

  1. Nomos Orion w stainless steel back. Attainable, super slim and utterly gorgeousNomos-Orion-38-1
  2. Casio G-Shock GDX6900FB-8B. Smoke gray son.casio-g-shock-gd-x6900-collection-1
  3. Sinn 856S UTC. Still probably one of my favourites ever.sinn856sutc
  4. Citizen Astrodea w cream dial. How sick is the starmap?OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
  5. Omega Speedmaster. Boring yes but sometimes classics are just what you want.omega_speedmaster
  6. IWC Portuguese Chrono w rose gold case / brown alligator strap. Still a grail in every sense of the word.iwc_portugieser-chrono_iw371480_usp_s18214_1_filtered
  7. A. Lange & Söhne Lange 1 w white gold case. The new uber grail.ALangeandSohneLangeOneSteel-3

Nabbed myself a 2/2/1 apartment off the plan in Marrickville. It’s next to the train station and I’ve got the corner northeast facing unit away from the tracks. 86sqm internal and 11sqm external, I’ll get morning sun and look out onto Illawarra road. When I was at the sales office, another dude snapped up this other apartment adjacent so he made the choice for me really. At first, I think I preferred the layout of that one. It had a double ensuite and kitchen island and more internal space plus a spare toilet for guests. Now I think I prefer mine. It’s got a long galley kitchen, a larger study nook and hallway storage. The plan is to make a custom counter in front of the kitchen. I think I’m just too used to working in kitchens. I’ve gotta have a counter! I feel naked if it’s just a galley kitchen! So I want this extra long counter. Will probably design it when I get more concrete plans etc. It’s gonna be a longass piece of wood with a metal frame below for storage and support. The floor is going to be carpet until I think I wanna get wood. We’re also going to paint the dining room wall yellow and use turqoise and mint for contrast. Here’s the overall plan. ^=existing , *=essential

Entrance
It’s a small space but it’s the one that greets you. I want mine a little cluttered and I’m gonna paint a doormat with some jizz.

  1. Wooden Stool
  2. Custom Ikea Trampa
  3. Mirror ^
  4. Umbrella Stand

Study
This is basically going to be my space haha! 27″ iMac with all black stealth mode furniture. The existing Ikea shelving will be in the living room space.

  1. Magis Chair One, black *
  2. Flos Tab T Lamp, black
  3. Ikea Alex Drawer Unit, black
  4. Ikea Lerberg, white x 2 ^
  5. Small Boxes

Living
I wanna get stuff from Australia too. Jardan makes some nice sofas and they aren’t cheap and crap either. Gonna use my girl’s expedit as a divider and displayer. Might get an Apple TV too to stream content to the telly.

  1. Jardan Coast Soda, medium gray
  2. Bright Yellow Cushions.
  3. Coffee Table
  4. Armchair
  5. Standing Lamp
  6. Ikea Besta TV Console, white
  7. Ikea Expedit Shelf, white ^

Dining
Another important space. I don’t reckon we will entertain much. It’s a small apartment. Going with a soft round table and ideally 4 Thonet B9s. The colour scheme for the apartment grew from here. Yellow wall, brown sideboard, copper lamp, white chairs, light wood table, turqoise wall art/plant, mint painting.

  1. Round Table
  2. Thonet B9, white x4
  3. Hanging Lamp
  4. Sideboard

Kitchen
This is a crucial space. My “dream” kitchen. Custom wood slab with metal frame support counter is gonna be exposed and hold up some nice plates and equipment and stuff. You’ll be able to read our lives in this counter. Will stick some herbs on the end of it to catch the sun from the balcony.

  1. Custom Wood Counter
  2. Magis Stool One, white counter height x 2

Bedroom
The dresser is my girl’s desk haha! Her zone.

  1. Sidetables
  2. Bed + Mattress (Upgrade time! With a headboard please!)
  3. Dresser
  4. Chair^

Second Bedroom
Will rent this out and have some stuff to furnish with too.

  1. Ikea Bed + Mattress^
  2. Ikea Drawer Unit^
  3. Ikea Desks^
  4. Ikea Chair^

Bathrooms
Won’t need much here, perhaps some small storage. We will see as there’s a storage space outside.

Balcony
Sippin’ on filter coffee in the daytime and a brewski at night. Prolly get a bright red BBQ too. Charcoal grillin’.

  1. Table
  2. 2 Chairs

Whitegoods/Electronics
I’m gonna fly the flag for my girl here. I have been mightily impressed by the Samsung washer I’ve used for the last 4 years. Going strong despite heavy use trying to wash chef jackets relentlessly. On the other hand, the Whirlpool fridge ain’t doing that well. Koreans do it well. It’s good that we’re getting a gas stove, oven and dryer included.

  1. Phillips TV^
  2. Apple TV
  3. Breville Smart Grinder^
  4. Samsung Fridge
  5. Iron
  6. Samsung Washing Machine
  7. Mixer (I think Kitchenaid but I’m not 100%)
  8. Breville Kinetix Pro Blender
  9. Toaster
  10. 21″ iMac^
  11. 27″ iMac
  12. Maybe some nice speakers

Smaller Items
Basically this is down to my girl. She’s going to pick the best from Korea. We’ll add to this as we go along obviously.

  1. Ironing Board
  2. Dinnerware
  3. Cutlery
  4. Curtains?
  5. Bedsheets
  6. House Slippers
  7. Umbrella
  8. Small Boxes/Stationery
  9. Cushion covers
  10. Cups/Drinkware

Super excited and constantly budgeting and listmaking. Just threw down the deposit today too. Mad broke.

What is it with the overwrought shit in the knife world? Why do people like purple overdyed green California Buckeye with gold spacers and mammoth tooth ferrules on teardrop damascus? I must be in the minority but in the knife world, it seems to be the more complicated and flashy your knife, the cooler it is? Perhaps I’m overreacting but I cringe everytime I see someone praise a knife with hypnosis included as a package if you stare at it long enough.

For me, the perfect knife is a Shigefusa Kasumi. Not the damascus Kitaeji, the regular polished Kasumi. The handle’s just a D-Shaped Ho Wood that’s considered too basic for most. I don’t get that. I think it’s fucking gorgeous and minimal and beautiful. On the surface, a Shig might look like a Tojiro maybe but knifelovers would know they’re worlds apart. I suppose I’m just drawn to stuff that doesn’t draw attention and is more subtle, like Naoto Fukasawa or Jasper Morrison as opposed to Karim Rashid maybe. Hell, Rashid’s stuff is still cool in my book. A lot of the “design” going on in the knife world is just… EURGH!

There’s a thread in the KKF, ugliest. knife. ever. that contains some of the worst ever shit. But for me, even some of the stuff that gets praise is just horrendous.

I have less of a problem with damascus patterns than I do with handles. It’s the handles that get the most room for wankers to slap something that will scream at your retinas. I also have less of a problem with knife profiles that aren’t usual at all. These just tend to be made by complete idiots anyway like a knife that coils almost into a circle or a really fat knife with holes cut into it or whatever. That’s just stupid shit. What I have a problem with is people putting custom handles on everything and just making it look garish.

I can’t knock other people’s businesses. People who make handles and supply the wood/materials for it run an honest business that appeals to some people. Sometimes, they also have really cool looking stuff as well. Personally, I think a good example of an ostentatious looking but still refined and restrained knife is the Gesshin Kagekiyo  Blue #1 series which comes with a black lacquered handle and saya and a polished finish. The handle also gets some progressively fading sparkles that looks like stardust that’s not too much. I like that it takes advantage of one of Japan’s best crafts, lacquerware.

One day, I’d like to see something like a collabo between Naoto Fukasawa and Tojiro or The Bouroullec Brothers and Sabatier. That would be sick. Or even get guys from fashion like Conroy Nachtigall or Errolson Hugh. Or what about a Supreme branded kitchen knife? Steal that James Jebbia. A design lover/knife lover can dream can’t he?

Once again, I’ve managed to misplace my headphones. Gone are the Shure SE215s that have been stuck in my ears for the last 2 years. They’ve been faithful and they’ve been warm and brilliant and bassy. For the $95 I spent, I haven’t had anything better. Ok well, I think the $99 pair of Grado SR80s probably have the best budget sound I’ve ever heard but they’re not isolating, ultra portable and lightweight.

So I’m in the market again and it’s back into the dreaded place that is Head-Fi.org. You don’t wanna hang out there for too long and then end up dreaming of throwing down big money on shit, particularly hi-fi shit. I’ve already got enough money wasting hobbies with knives and photography and eating so I can’t have another.

Still, the forums are a great way to get info and they’ve always got a handy compilation of recommendations to suit every budget and taste. A quick perusal finds the rather handy guide to the recommended list of headphones and I quickly zoom in on the VSonic GR-07. Mine are actually the Mark II, an “upgraded” version I bought off Singapore retailer, Lendmeurears.

The thing that makes me stop is just the design really. They’re little squares rather than the ultra bio-morphic style that is oft associated with in ear monitors. I hate those that are modeled after your earholes and shit. I want stuff that looks like futuristic jewellery dammit.

What convinced me was this video review on Youtube that told me 2 key details that changed my mind about buying something Chinese designed and produced.

#1. The diaphragms are made of bio-cellulose. This stuff is harvested from bacteria and layered together to produce the sound. Whilst VSonic aren’t the pioneers (that’s Sony) for using this technology, I just think it’s kinda cool and semi-scary in that sci-fi horror film way.

#2. The nozzles can pivot to adjust your ears. In terms of fit, I can say that these are the best I’ve tried thus far.

What does it sound like?

  1. Balanced. I can’t really describe it any other way than it’s got everything and will suit any type of music adequately.
  2. Crispy clarity. It’s not cold and referencey but it’s superbly detailed and clear.
  3. Average isolation.
  4. Warm but unexciting.

All in, I think that these are superior to the IEMs I’ve used before and it’s great value for money I think but at the moment, I do feel it lacks that special something. When I first listened to them, I thought, “oh wait, this is really clear but it’s not overly precise and it’s nice, I guess…”. It didn’t give me that sense of wow you get sometimes when you try something new. Maybe my expectations are getting higher but I’m really not keen at all to delve into post $300 IEMs. I don’t even use em that much nowadays and I listen to MP3s anyway. They’d just be wasted.

Still, I’m actually liking that this is a really good quality product across the board in terms of product design, functionality, performance, fit and finish and even the packaging ain’t that horrible. VSonic’s GR07s didn’t exactly set my heart racing but they certainly changed my perception of Made in China.

So after buying my new camera, I’ve spent a good bit of time on Youtube, photoforums, flickr and the like and notice that a lot of dickheads like to pimp out their cameras. Some dudes do it in the name of ergonomy whilst others are just unabashed in how they just wanna personalize their junk. Anyway, looking at all the shit they’ve got made me want to pimp out my X-E1 as well.

My theme is all black everything (what else?) Here’s what I got so far.

  1. Helios 44M-4. At 58/2, this is a good, cheap and reasonably fast lens that’s also quite well known as being a swirly bokeh producer. I wanted a tighter lens and at US$47 shipped, it came in pretty damn good condition. I’d hesitated for a long time because I kept reading horror stories about how ebay sellers exaggerate grossly but my 1987 copy came via emjaybe63 and is in pretty excellent condition with just a few specks of dust and cleaning marks. The exterior looks near new.
  2. M42-FX Adapter. I got this from ebay seller weakpotoman. The name sounds dumb but the adapter is fine. Just US$12 and fits fine. The only peeve I have with this setup is that the lens isn’t facing up the right way. The aperture and focal distance markings are all facing down so I can’t actually see them at all on the lens barrel. This sucks. The total size and weight of the camera is a bit more substantial now but it’s still quite fine.
  3. Matte black soft release. Off ebay again, from i-buy for US$2 a pop. I can’t ever imagine paying $20/30 for some “precision CNCed” piece of crap with a tiny little bug print or piece of exotic hardwood or whatever after I got this.
  4. DSPTCH Standard Sling. This one was a bit of a nightmare. First off, with shipping, it’s not cheap at all. US$68 and really, it’s just milspec webbing and simple design. Of all the slings out there, this was the one that most fit with what I wanted but I think I just got pulled by the marketing and the lack of vowels in the branding. Second problem was it took one bloody month to get down under. One month! I had shit shipped to me from the States in 2 days before. This took a whole month and it cost me US$24, almost a third of the cost. 3rd problem was it took me a while to figure out how to get the loops to attach to the lugs. Eventually, I found the explanation on the website itself. All in, I’m satisfied with the strap even if there was a bit of hassle.

Next up is to save up for the Fujifilm XF 18mm f/2 and maybe just throw down for an Industar 69 28mm f/2.8 + M39-FX adapter for kicks.

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I’ve been drinking pourover coffee for the past year, pretty damn regularly. I can’t believe it’s $5 a cup at most places in Sydney. Then again, it’s the same for espresso, ridiculously overpriced compared to the cost. I guess we just think it’s worth that markup. But for me, pourover is something I prefer to make myself and drink at home anyway. At the moment, I just don’t have the counter space or the spare cashola to throw down on an espresso machine.

My setup is a budget iced filter coffee set from Kalita that has a coffee pot, filter cone and an attachment you can fill with ice to put in between the other two to make iced coffee. I’ve never used the attachment. I just let my coffee go cold. Anyway, I bought myself a cheap gram scale off eBay, a dollar store measuring jug plus filters and I was pretty much good to go but pouring was definitely a bitch. So this year, I added a Kalita jug when I went to Union Commerce in Kappabashi.

At first, I was sceptical about it. I kinda wanted to gun for one of the enamel ones they also had in bright red or this weird matte black unbranded one but ultimately, what tipped the scales was my girlfriend. She noticed that the lid doesn’t fall off when you pour. There’s just enough friction to hold it onto the body when you’re pouring whereas every other jug has a totally loose lid.

When I used it for the first time, I was just kinda enchanted by the slow, gentle pour that came out of the long spout. I know it’s a bit ridiculous but I liked the feeling when it poured. I guess to me, making coffee is a bit of a personal ritual, kind of like visiting a priest in a confession box situation or getting a charm writ for me by my girlfriend’s psychic priestess aunt. Yea, same thing.

I actually really like the form of the jug as well. The simple but unexpectedly comfortable handle and the elegant spout that joins cleanly to the body with a little copper spacer as the interface.

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I spent a month on holiday, with a good ten days or so in Japan with my brother. He carried along with him his Canon 550D and a Yashica Electro 35 and basically gave me camera envy when I looked at my little Canon S95, with it’s pathetic low light performance and lack of bokehbility. So we spent a good bit of time in Yodobashi and Bic Camera, checking out stuff.

I wanted to make the step up in terms of photography and not only take better photos but not be afraid that I was taking them. However, I baulked at the sight of the various DSLRs from Canon and Nikon. These were not only huge and bulky, they were just ugly. I much preferred rangefinder style cameras, like the Leica or my brother’s Yashica for instance. Heck, if my old Zorki 10 was digital, I think that’d be cool too. After very little deliberation, I zoomed in on the Fujifilm X-E1.

It was just an obvious choice because it balances good looks with functionality. I appreciate the design details and build quality. It’s a small camera but one that feels substantial in the hand. Enough for me anyway. I can’t be bothered with heavy ass shit but something too light also seems impractical. The weight of the X-E1 is perfect when I paired it with the 35mm lens. You’re inclined to use two hands, which also promotes a much steadier shot and ergonomically, makes a lot of sense. I was hooked. The moment I got back from my holiday, I spent about 3 weeks reading up every single review on the little beast and most of it correlated to what I wanted in a camera.

There were a few concerns.

  • Relatively poor battery life (just get an extra OEM one I guess)
  • Sluggish EVF in low light
  • Poorer quality screen compared to similar priced cameras
  • Slow autofocus
  • Was I going to be able to make the leap from P&S Auto to a camera with no mode dials
  • Cost

There were more plusses

  • Image quality
  • Handling
  • Design/Build quality
  • Good proprietary lenses
  • Capability to use M mount lenses
  • Size/weight
  • Pure lust

Eventually, that last point won out. I took a trip to European Camera Specialists in Drummoyne, asked to try out the X-E1 and promptly bought it as a set with the Fujifilm XF 35mm f/1.4 R lens for a grand total of $1145. What tipped it for me was the dude quoted me a price $50 less than his website stated and it was his last piece. Just a few weeks back, I would’ve spent around $1400 for the same combo. In most other stores in Sydney, they don’t even offer the 35mm with the body anyway. There was one other store in Sydney that had a comparable price but I figured I was there and I’d wanted this for a month now, so why the hell not? My birthday’s up anyway.

I’ve updated to the latest firmware for both lens and body and the EVF sluggishness is mostly gone but the AF speed is still hairy especially in low light. It’s more than tolerable though. I have discovered that the 35mm lens has a very noisy motor but The rest of my concerns have mostly evaporated. The guy in the store informed me I’d get maybe 3-400 shots through it before the battery dies so basically, I won’t need a spare battery until I go on holiday. Even then, I don’t take 3-400 a day.

I kopped a SanDisk 16Gb Extreme SD Card ($22.90 from Memory City), have a black DSPTCH Standard Sling on the way and am considering to add the following in bits and bobs.

  • Nikon X Porter Daily Shoulder Bag, $150+shipping from Rakuten (gonna cut the Nikon tag off!)
  • Matchtechnical Beep soft release in Black, $18.38+shipping from Matchtechnical
  • OEM Spare Battery
  • Fujifilm XF 60mm f/2.4 R Macro
  • Rainbow Imaging M Mount Adapter, $11+shipping from eBay
  • Voigtlander 21mm f/4 P, $419+shipping from Adorama/B&H

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So far, I’ve only shot a bit in my bedroom plus a lunch at Jazz City Milk Bar in Darlinghurst plus a 10 minute walkaround in The Rocks during the Vivid festival.

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Teenage Engineering are based in Sweden and make electronic music related stuff that is sick. They definitely have a steez that has an inspired by Apple vibe but clearly, they have their own ideas and spirit as well. They just have a brilliant name that somehow reminds of John Peel R.I.P. So here’s Teenage Kicks.

But back to Teenage Engineering. I first noticed them when I came across this portable electronic sequencer called the OP-1. The design was what struck me because it looked exceptionally clean and well made but with just the right amounts of quirky cool thrown in to give it character. I especially love the animations. Then I found their other stuff, which is just as cool.

They’ve got a really simple cloud based speaker (OD-11), a lighting rigs system featuring really small halogen lamps (Studio System), a electric bicycle that’s coming soon (Machina) and the OpLab, which is a board that acts as an interface between electronic music equipment, regardless of whether it’s old or new and you can do shit like connect a shoe with a gyro sensor to trigger whatever you can think of or use one of their provided sensors like the Flip sensor that uses an accelerometer to control an element. Essentially, it lets you make your own synth based on your likes, needs and wants. There’s even a bloody harddrive that’s a work in progress that let’s you scratch like a DJ with a vinyl.

But make no bones about it, their flagship product is definitely the OP-1, which is pretty expensive at $849. Everything else revolves around this new remarkable millenium synth, which packs a lot of punch into a slim and sexy little slab.

Like Apple, TE also try to get you into a system and they have a lot of stuff that feels compelling. The design of their products is a clear standout and has to be a massive draw. I think it’s been a while since I felt an honest product lust for a new piece of electronic device and the OP-1 was what broke the drought. It’s well intentioned and probably only rich hipsters or wannabes might want it but there’s no denying, it is cool as fuck and you want it even if you don’t know what the hell it is. I know I do.

You can also check out some other projects and shit they’ve done on their website, like the 22 strong robot Absolut Choir, an ad campaign for New Balance  or a super cool styrofoam turntable.

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