One Potato, Two Potato, etc.

Potato peelers are so inherently utilitarian that their inclusion in a design shop is almost a cliché of anti-elitism. Yet while the “humble masterpiece of design” concept is well-worn, the most common alternative, that of expensive ‘design products’ where the designer’s principal contribution is to add prestige, seems to us an ethical and aesthetic dead-end. So potato peelers it is.

Zena Star Classic Peeler

?1947: Alfred Neweczeral

Honoured with a postal stamp in Switzerland in 2003, the ubiquitous Zena peeler combines simplicity of manufacture with near perfect functionality. Thus the item can be manufactured in Switzerland and still be competitively priced. Watch the Food Network™ and you’ll generally be able to tell the professional chef from the celebrity by keeping a eye out for this tool.

Good Grips: Peeler

?1994: Tucker Wiemeister & Smart Design

The result of extensive research and testing by Smart Design’s Wiemeister, the Good Grips handle was among the very first of the new ergonomic / accessible designs of the 1990s. A wide handle reduces grip strength requirement and flexible fins protect the hand and won’t slip even when wet. Made of Santoprene and stainless steel, all Good Grips tools are dishwasher safe. Winner of numerous awards including the Tylenol / Arthritis Foundation Award and Industrial Design Magazine Excellence Award.

Zena Star Classic Peeler: $12.95
Good Grips: Peeler: $9.95

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To purchase any of the products or titles mentioned here, please visit our downtown Toronto location, call us toll-free at 1-800-56-swipe or e-mail us at: info@swipe.com.

Global Design from Replogle

The largest globe manufacturer in the world, Replogle Globes of Chicago has recently shown an interest in applying design principles to an otherwise very conservative product category. These lines, while far from revolutionary, are both admirable for their understanding of contemporary aesthetics and their attention to detail.

Mikado 12″Globe & Spectrum 6″Globe

? 2004: Claus Jensen & Henrik Holbæk

Mikado, with its slate gray oceans, high-contrast metallic silver map, and unique angular brushed stainless steel base is a truly striking globe. Designed exclusively for Replogle Globes by Copenhagen based Tools Design, Mikado won a Advancing Design and Innovation Award in 2005. The 6″ Spectrum features the same slate-colored oceans and high-contrast metallic silver map as the award-winning Mikado, set on a circular stainless steel axis base.

Replogle Mikado 12″ Globe: $189.95
Replogle Spectrum 6″ Globe: $39.95

The Frank Lloyd Wright Collection

Licensed from the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation these globes adapt some of Wright’s most famous architectural details and furniture designs as bases for premium quality globes.

Frank Lloyd Wright Barrel 16″Globe

This globe stand is an adaptation of one of Frank Lloyd Wright most universally recognized furniture designs. It is a modified version of the famous Barrel Chair originally designed in 1903 and modified for Wright’s personal use at Taliesin in Spring Green, Wisconsin and for Herbert F. Johnson’s home, Wingspread, in Racine, Wisconsin in 1937.

Frank Lloyd Wright San Marcos 12″Globe

This 12” antique ocean globe features a stand adapted from a small hexagonal accent table designed by Wright for the Dining Pavilion of the San Marcos in the Desert Hotel in 1928.

Replogle Frank Lloyd Wright Barrel 16″ Globe: $849.95
Replogle Frank Lloyd Wright San Marcos 12″ Globe: $399.95

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To purchase any of the products or titles mentioned here, please visit our downtown Toronto location, call us toll-free at 1-800-56-swipe or e-mail us at: info@swipe.com.

The Return of a Venerable Annual

365 AIGA Year in Design 29

? 2009: Richard Grefé, Susan Apfelbaum & Paula Scher

After a brief and ill-considered flirtation with electronic publishing the AIGA has resumed publication of their book-format annual. While this is offically numbered issue 29 the Institute has publish an annual survey of member’s work off-and-on since 1927. This year’s entry is a 368 page paperback designed by Paula Scher and Pentagram New York and published under the Chronicle Books imprint which thankfully avoids some of the excesses of years past – for example the work is shown at a size that can be viewed without the aid of an electron microscope. Glad to have you back AIGA. (2009: Chronicle Books; ISBN 9780811869164)

$51.95

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To purchase any of the products or titles mentioned here, please visit our downtown Toronto location, call us toll-free at 1-800-56-swipe or e-mail us at: info@swipe.com.

Occupational Therapy for Out-of-work Birthday Clowns

Umbra Balloona Confetti Stool

? 2006: Natalie Kruch cdnmapleleaf

22-year-old Natalie Kruch designed this colourful, whimsical stool composed of 500 deflated balloons hand-tied over a wooden frame in 2006 while studying industrial design at the University of Alberta. Umbra approached the young designer about a production version but, although the product was featured in Metropolitan Home magazine in the summer of 2008, it quickly dropped out of production due to unsupportable manufacturing costs. Now Umbra has reintroduced the piece having found a sufficiently undervalued labour pool in Indonesia.

$299.95

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To purchase any of the products or titles mentioned here, please visit our downtown Toronto location, call us toll-free at 1-800-56-swipe or e-mail us at: info@swipe.com.

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