CH Japan: Indigo Dyeing Leather + Cotton

From the Tokushima farm of Akihito Sato to the vats of dye master Naoyuki Asai in Kyoto

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Many people don’t know where natural indigo comes from or realize how few indigo farms are left in Japan (only six). Indigo is a green plant that has a higher percentage of blue than others. Traditional indigo dye in Japan is made from sukumo, which is what the harvested and fermented indigo plant turns into; it’s a crumbly, blueish dried substance that is then mixed with lye and other ingredients to create the beloved Awa-Ai indigo dye that items eventually get dipped in.

We had the opportunity to visit the Sato family farm, run by ninth-generation indigo farmer Akihito Sato, in Tokushima. During our visit, they were planting their crop in the spring. The resulting sukumo, obviously limited in quantity, is some of the most coveted in Japan.

Our CH Japan guests had the honor of meeting one of the nation’s most celebrated indigo-dyeing masters, Naoyuki Asai, in Kyoto. There, they had the opportunity to learn about the process and his work. Then they were able to dye their own items—from jeans to sneakers to all types of shirts and fabrics. Our guests got their hands into magical vats of the bluest indigo we’ve ever seen. It was an experience that activated so many senses at once.

Images by Josh Rubin

Cars Banned From San Francisco’s Busiest Street

In an effort to ease congestion, improve conditions for cyclists, and make way for publicly funded restorations of sidewalks, transit lines and streets, San Francisco officially banned the presence of cars (except some official vehicles) on the city’s busiest thoroughfare: Market Street. Following similar legislation passed in cities including Paris, Madrid and NYC, San Francisco formulated a $600 million plan to revitalize its current systems and set a path for future solutions. For most cities, traffic patterns influence the rate at which projects get proposed, allotted, funded and executed—and which social and environmental issues (like access to public transit and carbon emissions) are addressed. With cars pushed aside, pedestrians and cyclists benefit from safer streets and are more inclined to walk and ride, while public acknowledgement of cars as a privilege and not a right opens a dialogue surrounding their impact on our environment and society. Read more about the significant change in SF at CityLab.

Miami police enlist architecture students to create 3D-printed model of the Super Bowl stadium

The Miami-Dade Police has worked with architecture students at Florida International University to create a 3D-printed model of the Hard Rock Stadium to prepare for the Super Bowl this weekend.

Designed by students in the College of Communication, Architecture + The Arts at FIU, the four-by-five feet (1.2-by-1.5 metres) mockup details bleachers, hallways, exits, rooms and support beams in the 65,000-seat stadium.

Miami-Dade Police Department (MDPD) has used the Hard Rock Stadium model – which also splits into cross-sections – since November 2019 for tactical training ahead of the event on Sunday 2 February.

3D-printed Hard Rock Stadium model by FIU students

The police force’s Super Bowl operations commander, Edgardo Caneva, said it was the first time that a 3D-printed model had been used to prepare for the Super Bowl  – the NFL’s annual American football championship final.

“Law enforcement has never done something like this before for a Super Bowl,” Caneva said. “This is a first for us, and the students at FIU are the ones who made it happen.”

The MDPD approached FIU’s police department to help with the project ahead of the 2020 Super Bowl.

FIU funded the production of the model, which was designed by a team including director Hadi Alhaffar, architecture graduate students Katherin Rendon and Francisco Alduenda, and undergraduate IT software student Samuel Morris.

3D-printed Hard Rock Stadium model by FIU students

The Robotics and Digital Fabrication (RDF) Lab then printed the model, which took a total of 3,500 hours.

Among the main challenges was the intricacy of the Hard Rock Stadium Miami, such as the pairs of spiral walkways that connect its various levels at each corner, and huge white spikes that carry tensile cables holding up the canopy roof.

“This was something unique, for FIU and MDPD, the creation of a physical model to use in training,” said Shahin Vassigh, the director of the RDF Lab.

3D-printed Hard Rock Stadium model by FIU students

“It’s not necessarily the scale that is unique – architects make models for demonstration regularly – but the intricacy of details and this type of collaboration,” Vassigh added.

Designed by firms Populous‎ and HOK, Hard Rock Stadium will host the 54th Super Bowl, which will see the San Francisco 49-ers take on the Kansas City Chiefs starting from 6.30pm EST.

Other stadiums that have hosted the event include Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium, which has a stadium roof that closes “like a camera aperture”.

Video and photography are courtesy of FIU.

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CH Japan: Exploring Setouchi Crafts + Denim

From a vessel that represents a region’s talents to a neighborhood of exemplary mills

Japan‘s Setouchi region—from the namesake town to the serene Seto Inland Sea—offers a concentration of high-quality crafts, denim and food. On our CH Japan guided excursion, we explored it from the pristine guntû floating ryokan to various day trips on foot. Nearly everything on guntû is from Setouchi, including furniture, ceramics, textiles, food and even the wood used on the ship. The rattan chairs in the tea room were inspired by a vintage design that’s no longer in production, but was very successfully recreated. The elegance of the items, and their harmony together, epitomize the vision of guntû’s parent company, DISCOVERLINK.

One of our most memorable experiences on the Seto Inland Sea involved disembarking on tiny speed boats from the guntû and making our way to a Okamoto Soy Sauce factory, in the town of Shiromizu on the island of Osakikamijima. To learn the process behind the beloved condiment provided lasting insight and enjoyment. After our tour, we dined under the open skies and ate fresh fare from the sea.

The denim industry also has a high concentration of mills in the area and Kojima, a neighborhood of Kurashiki, is known as Jeans Street and features dozens of denim brands and their stores. One unique shop is Onomichi Denim Project, which mostly sells jeans that have been worn for a year by a local, creating truly one-of-a-kind pants that are imbued with the spirit of Setouchi.

Kaihara is one of the largest denim mills in the area and produces some of our favorite specialty denim. A visit to the mill is a great opportunity to see how various types of denim are fabricated and, if you’re fortunate enough to see their massive denim archive and reference library (as we were), it’s an experience in sensory and tactile overload.

Images by Josh Rubin

Inouye Solar Telescope takes most detailed images of the sun to date

Inouye Solar Telescope takes most detailed images of the sun to date

The first images taken by the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) latest solar telescope show the cell-like structures “the size of Texas” that cover the sun’s surface.

The snapshots show a pattern of “turbulent boiling plasma” that covers the whole of the sun’s surface.

According to the NFA, each of the cell-like structures depicted are approximately the size of Texas, and are a sign of “violent” motions that transport heat from the inside of the sun to its surface.

This process, known as convection, sees the hot solar plasma rise to form the bright centres of the cells before cooling off and sinking below the surface, creating dark “lanes”.

The images have been captured using the NSF‘s Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope in Hawaii – the world’s largest solar telescope.

It combines a four-meter mirror with “unparalleled viewing conditions” atop the 10,000-foot Haleakala mountain in Maui, Hawaii.

Used for the first time, the telescope captured the highest resolution images ever taken of the sun’s surface. Scientists hope this will help them better understand the sun’s activity, known as space weather, and its impact on the earth.

More specifically, scientists hope the newly revealed details will allow them to determine what causes the sun to release powerful flares out into space.

These are potentially harmful to air travel, satellite communications and can bring down power grids, causing long-lasting blackouts and disabling technologies such as GPS.

Having access to more detailed images of the sun’s surface will help governments better prepare for future space weather events by notifying them of potential impacts as much as 48 hours ahead of time, instead of the current standard of around 48 minutes.

“NSF’s Inouye Solar Telescope will be able to map the magnetic fields within the Sun’s corona, where solar eruptions occur that can impact life on Earth,” said France Córdova, NSF director.

“This telescope will improve our understanding of what drives space weather and ultimately help forecasters better predict solar storms,” she added.

The Inouye Solar Telescope was built by NSF’s National Solar Observatory and managed by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA).

It generates 13 kilowatts of solar power and heat from its main, four-metre mirror, and therefore requires a specialised cooling system to dispel this heat.

The dome that surrounds the telescope is covered in thin cooling plates that work to stabilise the temperature around the telescope.

The mirror’s “off-axis” placement reduces bright, scattered light to obtain clearer views.

According to David Boboltz, program director in NSF’s division of astronomical sciences, the telescope’s first images are “just the beginning”.

“Over the next six months, the Inouye telescope’s team of scientists, engineers and technicians will continue testing and commissioning the telescope to make it ready for use by the international solar scientific community,” said Boboltz.

“The Inouye Solar Telescope will collect more information about our Sun during the first five years of its lifetime than all the solar data gathered since Galileo first pointed a telescope at the Sun in 1612,” he added.

Scientists were also experimenting with solar geoengineering back in December 2018 in a bid to dim the sun, using a process that replicates the climate-cooling effect of volcanic eruptions.

The experiment, which was set to take place in early 2019, saw calcium carbonate particles injected high above the earth in an attempt to reflect some of the sun’s rays back into space.

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Design Indaba 2020: Speakers, Thinkers and Creators

A glimpse at what to expect from the next iteration of the dynamic conference

Now in its 25th year, Design Indaba explores how to make the world a better place through creative innovation and groundbreaking design. For three days, the annual Cape Town summit brings together international, visionary minds to share ideas and explore new ways of thinking.

Founder Ravi Naidoo and his team bring some of the most thoughtful and provocative creatives in the world together. From well-known leaders to emerging designers, big names and soon-to-be-discovered talents, the speakers have something in common: to make us see things, form a new and unexpected point of view, lead us to understanding what we always see but never really observe, show us the directions of future innovation, and more. We are talking about people of the caliber of Thomas Heatherwick, Patricia Urquiola, Tom Dixon, Brian Eno, Yves Behar, Jaime Hayon, and David Droga.

Courtesy of Design Indaba

This year’s Design Indaba will take place between 26-29 February and we will hear inspiring words from speakers belonging to a dozen different disciplines, inside and outside the design world. Creative directors, artists, performers, architects, illustrators and experimental designers will share their thoughts, work, influences and inspirations.

Courtesy of Studio Drift

Ghanaian artist Ibrahim Mahama, architects Neri & Hu, jazz musician Nhlanhla Mahlangu, artist collective Studio Drift, performance artists Honey and Bunny, illustrator Olimpia Zagnoli, designer Paul Cocksedge, as well as designer and podcaster Debbie Millman (who will have a special live session of her acclaimed podcast Design Matters) will all be present this year.

Courtesy of Design Indaba

The main hub will be the Artscape Center, with its theater for talks and vast outside space for exhibitions and music events; a festival in the festival. If you are heading to Cape Town, tickets for the live events can be purchased online, and if you are in Durban, Johannesburg, Nairobi or another African city, you can follow the talks via simulcast. And if you are anywhere else in the world, follow our updates at Design Indaba and on social media.

Visual Quiz: How Many Triangles are in This Drawing?

Geometry was one of the only things I was good at in high school…but I blew this quiz. Am assuming some of you will make the same mistake I made and others will nail it:

After you’ve figured it out, scroll down for the answer.













via PopMech

Amidst Moustache Mug Comeback, Someone Designed a Retrofittable Version for Booze

After writing about the colonialism-based invention history of the moustache cup, which went out of style in the 1930s, I should’ve figured the hipster groomed moustache crowd would have recently reinvigorated the market. And in fact they have. While you can still buy 19th-Century versions on the antiques market, like this one for $62…

…you can also find brand-new ones for sale, like this $18 one on Etsy, handmade in Serbia:

In fact, on Etsy it’s its own freaking category.

And of course, someone had to go and take it too far. Here’s the Whisker Dam, a “handmade copper mustache guard” that can be retrofitted to drinking glasses:

What, no hand-stitched vegetable-tanned bison leather carrying case?

And here I killed the Design Roast because I figured I’d run out of material.

Colorful 3D Modeling and Digital Creations

Santi Zoraidez, directeur artistique et designer originaire d’Argentine évoqué précédemment, réalise des modélisations en 3D et des créations numériques aux couleurs vives et aux courbes arrondies. Précédemment basé à Berlin, l’artiste est désormais retourné dans son pays natal afin de poursuivre ses travaux. Ses oeuvres, dont les effets numériques sont incroyables, l’ont conduit à travailler avec de grandes marques telles qu’Apple, Nike ou encore Ikea. Passionné par les meubles, le design d’intérieur, les installations artistiques, l’architecture et le design graphique, il parvient à créer des rendus au style inimitable à travers desquels il peut étudier des notions telles que le temps, l’espace et le mouvement.


CIGA’s see-through watch lets you see the 4th dimension in motion

I don’t normally profess a love for complications… unless they are watch complications. There’s a distinct joy in observing mechanical watches and their intricacies, and how multiple pieces of metal choreograph a precisely timed dance to let you literally see time unfold in front of your eyes.

CIGA Design’s Z-Series timepieces feature a handcrafted watch body that encases and showcases. The German Design Award-winning watch comes with a precision-machined Grade-2 Titanium body that surrounds the watch’s custom-made Seagull AAA mechanical movement on the sides, exposing the inner mechanics of the watch on the top and the bottom, so you can both see as well as listen to your watch’s heartbeat.

The watch’s hypnotic mechanical movement sits sandwiched between two layers of scratch-resistant synthetic Sapphire glass. The upper glass’ hyperboloid curvature gives its internal mechanics depth while making sure the case isn’t as thick around the sides. There isn’t a discernible watch face, given its skeletal, transparent nature. The watch’s hands sit directly above the movement, with a beautiful exposed tourbillion meditatively spinning at the 6 o’clock position. The automatic mechanical movement comes with a power reserve of 40 hours and uses your wrist’s motions to charge itself, and a 3ATM rating makes the watch fairly water-resistant. This effectively means that the watch, with its titanium case, can run for centuries on land and water without showing signs of aging!

Each Z-Series watch comes within a beautifully designed case that opens up like a book to reveal the timepiece inside. The watch even comes with a choice between leather and silicone straps (both equally inconsequential because the watch itself is the real show-stopper), and a neat, 2-year warranty.

Designer: CIGA Design

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CIGA Design Z-Series Mechanical Titanium Watch

A sophisticated transparent fully automatic timepiece made from Titanium and Sapphire Crystal that affords its wearer and those around him a chance to marvel at its inner workings and inherent strength.

Grade 2 Titanium Case

Containing the precise mechanics is a shell of Grade 2 Titanium, one of the strongest and most distinctive metals. It has unparalleled corrosion resistance and is 40% stronger and 30% lighter than stainless steel—the current standard for watchmakers.

Customized Seagull AAA-Class Movement ST2553JK

The Seagull AAA automatic self-winding mechanics keep your watch charged without the need for batteries. The natural movement of your wrist literally energizes your watch and makes its wheels and gears move. As you move, a spring winds, storing energy for up to 40 hours. No manual winding required!

– Energy storage of 40 hours
– Movement frequency of 21,600 times/hour
– Movement error range: -15 to +30 seconds/ 24 hours

SEAGULL is one of the largest manufactures for movements. The brand is known for its advanced technology and precision. CIGA Design is proud to own a customized version for the watches.

Curved Sapphire Crystal Watch Face

Smooth, curvaceous and incredibly strong, just like you need your watch to be. The glass face is fashioned from 1.2mm hyperboloid artificial sapphire for ultimate scratch resistance. Only diamond is stronger.

Fully Transparent Design

Curious about how the intricacy of watch works inside out? Their fully hollow design allows you to see through every part of the mechanics. Giving you the ownership to admire the craftsmanship of the watch at a deeper level. Through their watches, they want you to see, feel and own the watch at work on your wrist.

Skin Friendly

Titanium is skin-friendly and hypoallergenic and is widely used in medical, jewelry and other manufacturing industries.

A Gift, Artwork & a Heart Beating Journey

Click Here To Buy Now: $244 $380 (35%). Hurry, only for YD readers and less than 72 hours left! Raised over $970,000.