I had a little mishap regarding renewing my domain so I'm combining two months for now. On that note, happy blog anniversary! Yes, it's filled with colors! It is officially spring despite the snow that welcomed us here in New York City. I'm trying to put some color in my designer life.
Hour Bag - 3.1 Phillip Lim
As a typical architect, all my bags are black. I decided to put some color in my collection. Grey and blue may still be neutral but it's a start! I'm still not used to the splash of color and it's a little challenging getting used to it and working my outfits around it since it's my new everyday work bag. It's really big and roomy, which is what I want because I tend to bring more stuff than I really should. It fits 11x17 drawings and a pair of emergency heels quite nicely. It's available in different colors and you can buy it here.
8-inch N1 Series Chef's Knife - Cangshan
I was looking for a mid-range chef's knife because I don't think I should go for the $500 ones just yet. At the same time, I was looking for a good design as usual. This caught my eye because of it's unique ergonomic design. The weight is distributed well despite its circumventing appearance. It's not really a well-known brand but I decided to go for it anyway and it did not disappoint! I managed to cut through a whole watermelon without any struggle. I was unusually overjoyed by this as I munched on my sliced watermelon. You can get it here.
Cleo Sneakers - Acne Studios
Yes, I am collecting Acne Studios stuff. I absolutely love these sneakers. The playful mirror "meh" face is just absolutely adorable. It's quite chunkier than what I had expected and is not really the most comfortable pair of sneakers I own but it's just so darn cute. I was also looking for all-black sneakers so these did the trick. They're sold out everywhere but you can still get the low cut ones here.
Verbena Amuse Bouche Lipstick - Bite Beauty
More colors! This has been my everyday lipstick so far. The color is like brick red with a tinge of my natural lip color so it's noticeable but not too much in your face. Bite Beauty's products claim to be safe for consumption because we actually do end up consuming quite a bit of lip product. I have also made my own lipstick color at their Lip Lab here in New York City. You can make an appointment here.
Nama Chocolate Au Lait - ROYCE' Chocolates
I have been having ROYCE' Chocolates since I was a child but I usually only have them during special occasions. I stumbled across the New York City shop recently and my companion decided to treat me with a box of this delicious goodness. I'm hooked. It's bad that I'm hooked. It's too good. My best friend from Germany actually requested that I bring this to her last year but could not because it had to be in a certain cool temperature. When you buy this from the shop they actually provide a freezer pack to keep it cool. If there are no ROYCE' shops near you, fear not because you can order it online here.
I can't seem to keep up with myself considering I haven't really presented or organized my travel photos since last year. I am actually required to present my travel experiences at work during one of our Happy Hours but I am already one year overdue!
Iceland has always been a dream of mine to go to since I stopped over on my way to Finland a few years ago. I figured that it's not a solo trip sort of thing so I was waiting for someone to be available. After summer last year I expressed to my friends that I wanted to go to Iceland but could not because of companion and timing planning. I had the perfect opportunity to do it this year on my birthday so I could not resist!
Iceland is one of the most beautiful and peaceful countries I have ever been to. It's just so otherworldly and it feels like Mars and moon on earth. The animals are amazing as well. The people are generally honest in my opinion. They keep to themselves but will help you if you ask for it. The "busy" area is quaint and the nightlife I think is the most fun out of all the countries I have been to mainly because of my preferences. I do not drink or smoke so my idea of a night out is to listen to live music. Music is a huge thing in Iceland and there is this running joke that almost everyone in Iceland is in a band and can play at least two instruments. I was exposed to Reykjavik's local metal bands and they're pretty hardcore and supportive. The shows are free as well and you get to eat porridge while watching. I'm not sure if that's a norm but that made the experience unique. Porridge and moshpits. Can't go wrong with that.
We opted for tours instead of renting cars because of the dangers of the unpredictable weather. We went to the Golden Circle and Blue Lagoon outside Reykjavik. We would have done the South Coast tour if it weren't for the rainy and snowy weather which took place in five consecutive days. We did not even get to see the Northern Lights! Everything else made up for it because it was such a cozy experience being a local in Reykjavik. When I came back to New York City, the feeling of hygge, being close to nature and comfort just went away so fast. It truly is a different experience.
Overall, I learned a lot about life in general from my trip to Iceland. It opened my eyes to what peace of mind and heart is like outside my home which is the epitome of urbanism. There are two things I will miss the most about Iceland: local horses and the rotten egg smell of high pressure hot water.
Hello, world! I'm back. As usual, this month has been quite a roller coaster with moving, my birthday and my trip to Iceland on board. I just got back from Iceland a couple of days ago after being stuck from the snow storms with delays both in New York and in Iceland. I'm moving to my new place this weekend and am very much excited about my new home.
Icelandic Horses - Iceland
People give me weird reactions when I say that my favorite part of Iceland was their absolutely adorable horsies. They are the most amiable little but strong wild creatures. They would come up to you and make you pet them. They'll get mad if you don't... or eat your power bar instead. Besides the wild and the farms, I was able to ride them around the lava hills in Reykjavik. I bonded with Oscar, this rogue guy who likes to go off the beaten path and almost made me fall off several times from running out of the blue. It's my first time bonding with a horse and it's such a beautiful thing. They roll over and nuzzle you like big doggies. Nature is amazing.
Norm Stackable Glass - Menu
Designed again by Copenhagen based designers Norm Architects, these are just additions to my growing house items collection. Thrifting for these was fun. I was able to get them at half the price and I really do appreciate its non-sticky stackable design.
Thermo Flask - Eva Solo
I had to bring a water thermos with me that didn't freeze while I was out in the middle of nowhere in Iceland. It also had to contain a substantial amount of liquids because I was out for hours at a time. This served me well.
Cuboid Necklace - Metal Designs Iceland
This pendant designed by Stefán Bogi was a wonderful gift to me. Stefán Bogi is an Icelandic goldsmith who studied in Denmark and was awarded by the Danish Art Industry for his work.
Black Tall Beanie - Wood Wood
I thought it was so expensive to get anything from Wood Wood but I was able to nab one during one of the sales at Asos. The fit is quite unique and it's just perfect for casual days.
The one thing that made me fall in love with Denmark was how everybody (and not just designers/architects) cared about design. It's the one thing that changed my mind last year: to invest in my home as much as the Danes do. While I was in architecture school and during my early post-graduation years, I did not really see the point in investing in my home because I was working a lot. If I'm not in my school studio, I'm at my work studio. I hardly spent any time at home. Now that I'm older and moving into my big (New York City standard) new place, I decided to put some priority in my little urban cave.
I decided to have a long term philosophy to go with my lifetime shopping investments. All of my home belongings, as much as possible, must be designed by architects. I know it's a little tricky and not to mention very expensive to do this, but I thought that everything would not be bought in one shot. Patience, luck and persistence are key elements in this ownership journey. It's also fun to hunt for discounted items and to go thrifting every now and then. It's part of the thrill. I be will sharing some of my finds along the way.
New Norm Dinnerware by Menu with Norm Architects
Gone are my Ikea plates. Hello, Normware. I will start lovingly calling them my little Normwares. The different minimalist bowls and plates were designed by Copenhagen based firm Norm Architects. I was able to obtain my new plates and bowls form their official North America site where they sometimes have little (or rather big) sales going on. I managed to get them for around 70% off, which is an absolutely great deal considering their normal price. Collect them all in different sizes and colors. Like Pokemon.
Santiago Flatware by Alessi with David Chipperfield
I never knew how difficult it is to pick out flatware. Unlike plates and bowls, flatware does not necessarily break. The only way you can get rid of them is by losing them or selling them. It's like a lifetime commitment. Another integral factor is the price. I really can't see myself buying a 5-piece set for around $200 USD as of now. Toyo Ito's Mu and Jean Nouvel's from Georg Jensen flatware were the ones that I really wanted but didn't really want to drop one grand for a sufficient number of cutlery. I found that the London based architect's Santiago set the most affordable out of all the architect-designed flatware. I'm not too sure about the 3-prong fork though. I don't necessarily love it but it will do for now. I also have Arne Jacobsen's flatware but it's not really the most functional set to regularly eat with unless you're in a strict small quantity diet. Inspiring to look at but eating with it is just a struggle.
Arne Jacobsen Cylinda Line by Stelton
This was a product of thrifting and I'm quite proud to own this. It will stay in my dining room table just because. It's probably going to last forever just like my flatware so you're going to see this quite a bit if you know me in person. Most newer Arne Jacobsen dinnerware are made in China, so it's important to look for the older manufactured ones so that they are indeed made in Denmark.
Last Saturday on January 9, 2016, David and I volunteered to help out at the Center for Architecture NYC for Family Day. Our task was to teach the basic concepts of bridges and how to make them with the materials we provided. It was fascinating for David and I to find out how much the 3-8 year old kids knew about the structural terms! It was a lot of fun and very insightful on our end because of how people who have no architecture or engineering background were able to build such diverse and functional designs!
December has been quite eventful with all the new experiences and planning involved. So far I have successfully planned events which everyone thoroughly enjoyed and spent a lot of time with loved ones. This month was all about pampering and being kind to myself besides to others. Presents are always a good thing.
Acne Studios Canada Scarf
I gave in. That's all I have to say.
Kaibosh About A Round Sunglasses
All the way from Norway, this made its way back to me after I tried them on the last time I was in Copenhagen. Many thanks to my best friend in Germany for mailing it to me here in New York City. Every time I wear these sunnies people always take notice.
Heyday Facial Spa
I had a facial with my sister as my holiday gift for her. I mainly picked this new spa because of its aesthetic and design but my skin has never been in better shape after just one session with them. I want to include this in my monthly regimen. For more information and for reservations, click here.
COS Slip-on Leather Sneakers
I have been looking for sneakers that don't expose the brand name for work when I am not in my usual heels. These satisfy my requirements.
Scandinavian Baking Book by Trine Hahnemann
This absolutely beautiful book with artistic photographs was given to me as a holiday gift from my sister. I have not tried any of the recipes yet but I have been admiring them a lot and have been very inspired. I am not into baking that much but I thought that I would give it a shot.
This entry is the last from my first blogging year. I'm glad I was able to keep up with it and I'm grateful for all the viewers I have received so far. It's always amazing to see the statistics and where the readers are coming from. I hope you'll continue reading and checking for updates. Thank you everyone for all your support. Happy New Year and I hope you'll have a great year ahead of you!
It was my first time at the Cooper Hewitt Museum. I enjoyed their development of their interactive wand where you can store information and works that you can access through your temporary personal website printed on your ticket, which of course I lost. I was able to create some 3D drawings through their interactive tables and save them. The exhibits right now include Pixar animations where I was able to just sit down and draw Merida from Disney's "Brave" movie. It showed the process of how Pixar comes up with their designs and stories. David Adjaye, who I met a few years back, also had an exhibit on his Central African textile picks. Other exhibits include "How Posters Work" and other curated architectural furniture, models and drawings.
Provocations: The Architecture and Design of Heatherwick Studio was the star of the show taking up one whole floor full of their experimental, conceptual, upcoming and built works. All the models and prototypes you could wish for form the London-based firm are available for viewing at the exhibit. Their information brochure can be obtained from the large spool located at the entry point as seen in the video above. It ends on January 3, 2016 so catch it while you can. For more information about the exhibit, click here.
I have attempted several times to drive through the borders of Canada to view Habitat 67 by Moshe Safdie. I entertain myself by asking people who did not study architecture to guess the age of buildings such as these. My go-to would always be Habitat 67 and The Breuer Building as mentioned in my previous post. It's always fascinating to hear them guess that they were built during the 21st century. With designs ahead of their time such as that of Moshe Safdie's, there is a conjecture of timeless contemporary qualities through their complex age obscurity.
In Global Citizen: The Architecture of Moshe Safdie Exhibit, you'll see stunning and articulate physical models of his conceptual, current and upcoming international works. It is located at the National Academy at from now until January 10, 2016. It was curated by Donald Abrecht who is a curator of art, architecture and design based in New York. For more information, click here.
Goodbye, November! It's been a food-filled month. It flew by so quickly and it's now time for the Holidays. The architecture events have died down in New York City. There have been fewer lectures as well. Everyone's getting ready for some "hygge" time with their friends and loved ones.
From jams to skincare, I've been all about cloudberries. Aptly named, the orange bumpy berries grow in the Northern parts in the world where they thrive to live despite harsh conditions. The logical side in me thinks that it probably has potent components that make it able to withstand the cold, but I could be wrong. I figured that I should give them a shot during this time of the year. I started looking for skincare products such as the Finnish brand, Lumene, that had cloudberry extracts and so far they've been as lovely as they taste!
Gregorys Coffee Whole Wheat Donut
I have been starting off my Mondays with this lovely donut available at Gregorys Coffee shops around New York City. They are absolutely amazing and I really had to cut back to having them only once a week.
Museum of Feelings
I have had 2 attempts so far to get inside this pop-up museum but have failed. At around 5 in the afternoon, they start turning away the guests in line. It's a 2-3 hour wait in line to go through the exhibit for 20 minutes. For the lucky few who get off extra early from work, it's free and available for experiencing from November 24 to December 15, 2015. Located at the brand spanking new Brookfield Place where Pelli Clarke Pelli's new pavilion debuted, the exterior shifts colors and responds through lit "feelings" to social media and real time data. For more information, click here.
I love this kitchen gadget so much. It makes me feel like a professional and gets work done so quickly and effectively. It's very easy to clean as well.
Cellphone Ring Bunker
I have managed to wreck my phone way too many times this year despite having proper cases so my friend suggested that I get this nifty little bunker ring. You can stick it at the back of your phone and it will act as a pivoting handle as well as a kickstand for your phone.
Hej! I am Katherine Ann A. Salamat and I am originally from the Philippines. Currently, I am an architectural designer in New York City. I love all things Nordic, language, design, food, travel, anthropology and experiential writing.