Daily nuggets of inspiration from the good folk
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Just because walls are flat doesn’t mean billboards have to be. IBM and Ogilvy France have launched a series of outdoor ads, each with a different shape and purpose. (Good spot, Jamie.) There’s one you can sit on. Another you can shelter under when it rains. And another that makes dragging your bag up steps that little bit easier.
The ads are part of IBM’s People For Smarter Cities project, which encourages ‘smarter thinking’ when it comes to city planning and design. But they’re not the only ones with the big ideas – while you use the ads to sit/shelter/roll, you’re also encouraged to go online and share your own ideas for the city. Clever.
It’s always a nerve-wracking moment getting your new watch wet. Does waterproof really, really mean waterproof?
To prove to discerning customers that their diving watches do what they say on the pack, Festina is selling their timepieces in clear bags filled with distilled water. (Cool spot, Jamie C.)
Built to survive years of deep-sea diving, the Festina Profundo range proves its worth to discerning customers before they leave the shop. (And long before they accidentally keep it on when they get into the bath.)
Everyone knows about the ridiculous mark-up on certain food and drink (popcorn, anyone?). But it’s much trickier to know what you’re paying for when it comes to fashion.
To try and change this, new Californian fashion retailer Everlane has made all its pricing completely transparent. So instead of just showing the price, infographics outline the cost of materials, construction and transport, as well as the mark-up and where it was made.
For example, Everlane’s Weekender bag sells for $95. But before parting with your cash, you’d see that the true cost is only $38. That might seem like a big difference, but their mark-up of 2.5 is apparently much less than that of other brands, which would sell a similar bag for around $300.
That’s not to say Everlane uses cheaper materials or lower quality processes. The brand uses the same materials as luxury brands – including cashmere from a top-end mill in Scotland. But by only selling online, they ‘eliminate bricks and mortar expenses’ and pass on savings to savvy shoppers.
Today, trainers. Tomorrow, track.
Nike’s Reuse-A-Shoe programme takes old athletic shoes and turns them into Nike Grind, a high-quality sports surface used in courts, turf fields and tracks.
It’s all part of their vision to make ‘closed-loop’ products – things that use the fewest materials possible and can be taken apart and recycled into something new.
Since 1990, Reuse-A-Shoe has transformed 28 million pairs of shoes and 36,000 tons of scrap material into Nike Grind, which is used in 450,000 locations around the world. Time to dig your old trainers out from under the bed and give them a new lease of life.
Dip into Little Women. Borrow the Little Prince. Follow Gulliver through Lilliput. All from the teeny weeniest library you’ve ever seen. (Good spot, Lyndal.)
Designed by Stereotank, the ‘Little Free Library’ is a project by The Architectural League of New York and Pen World Voices Festival. There are ten of the yellow pods in New York, each stocked with tomes donated by the local community.
The libraries are made from upside down plastic tanks and wooden frames, creating ‘inhabitable’ spaces where people can immerse themselves and take time to browse, borrow and exchange. When you take a book, you’re also encouraged to leave one behind, meaning the selection will be different every time you pop your head in.
Best of all – there’s not a strict librarian in sight.