Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Cool Rings Under $50

Banana Republic $49
I've posted before on the merits of cheap jewelery but I wanted to do a post that was an ode to rings. I heart big, obnoxious, rings. There I said it. My favorite thing on the planet right now is this giant black rose ring that anyone who's related to me thinks is just ridiculous but I get a lot of compliments on it. Plus, I'll probably lose it in the next few weeks hence my addiction to cheap jewelery. Spend your money on a gorgeous dress be cause I guarantee that you won't leave it on a bathroom counter somewhere (if you do..... you may want to look into a lifestyle change).
Topshop $20Forever 21 $6.80

Anthropologie $58 (ok, it's a little over)

Monday, June 29, 2009

Air New Zealand Came Up With A Cool Safety Video!

I have been on a ton of flights lately and I get so annoyed with the lifeless safety presentation at the beginning. Look what Air New Zealand came up with.

Major Lazer - Thanks Jamaica!!

Check out Major Lazer from Jamaica and his LP was produced by Diplo and Switch so you know it's good! The shirts are pretty cool too and only $25

La Roux: Bulletproof Is Proving We Are In The Throes Of An 80's Phase

LA ROUX 'BULLETPROOF' from soyo on Vimeo.

This is the number 1 song in the UK this week.

Transformer Cufflinks

These are awesome and I can't think of any boy who wouldn't want these, the New Jersey-ite has been talking about seeing the 2nd one non-stop since this weekend. At $20 from Finkstudio .

Friday, June 26, 2009

A Creative Person You Should Know About: Nicolas Evariste

I generally do not like animal photos that much because they seem to turn out in a really trite and "hey we went to the zoo" kind of way. French photographer Nicolas Evariste has some really good ones and manages to make them look modern somehow. Take a look.


Tellin' Time Limited Edition Nooka

Undercrown and Nooka have teamed up to make 200 of these. $275


Thursday, June 25, 2009

Tellin' Time

This clock is always set 3 minutes ahead. I love it! I am one of those people that has to set all my clocks ahead 10 minutes so that I can get anywhere on time. Designed by Fabrica and Diamantini&Domeniconi


Cool Little Video: Thanks Paris!

Mixing The 80's With Your Laptop.

I totally want this. Gelaskin by Lyle Owerko

Is Everyone Cheating?

"I'm watching a person implode" my sister tells me when she called this morning.
"I mean, where the hell is his publicist to tell him 'wear this tie, say this and this, and then get off the stage', he's answering every question, oh my God his career is over." She was, of course, referring to Mark Sanford and his strangely honest press conference yesterday.
But I wonder with all this cheating going on if that's really true, will his career really be over? More importantly, is everyone cheating these days? It seems like every other week there's a tearful politician confessing their sins to the world and it reminds me a lot of the tabloids featuring Sean Penn, Jon and Kate, and other cheaters.
The truth is, it's everywhere because we really want to see it. I am not finger wagging by the way. I follow and talk about Jon and Kate Plus 8 more than I am comfortable admitting and here's what's even worse: I think about it more than I'm comfortable admitting. Did they have 8 kids to have a successful show? Was this planned from the beginning? Is it ok if 2 people with 8 kids grow apart and see other people if it makes them happy?
Why are we so obsessed with cheating, who's doing it, who's forgiving it, and what the details are? It's like we're having an adolescent crisis as a culture about marriage and what we are allowing and what we're not and we're going to do that publicly in every media forum possible.
Lastly, what does this mean for young-ish people in relationships? Are the odds stacked against us?

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

How To Do Your Hair 1930's Style.

via 13Bees
This is the best hair tutorial video! I'm going to try it tomorrow. If I have the patience. And the time.

"The Ring" Author Makes Disposable Horror.

I am a huge horror film fan (one of my friends accuses me of introducing myself as follows: "hi, I'm Caitlin and I love horror films. Especially Japanese horror films, what have you seen?" )
This is totally untrue of course but I have had my fair share of evenings out where I find myself discussing the finer points of The Eye or Dawn of The Dead with the only person in the bar that is definitely, without a doubt, a math major. Anyway, how cool is this? Koji Suzuki (he did "The Ring") has written a nine chapter book called "Drop" on rolls of toilet paper. Each roll has the novel repeated a bunch of times so you never lose your place.

Apple Can Keep A Secret, So Should You, And What It Has To Do With Kick The Can.

vintage Coke cans from Dieline
Apple is being splashed across a lot of newspages lately for being so secretive and is even being accused of telling lies to its own workers to stop idea leakage from the company. At first read I found myself saying "Apple, get over yourself". I love Apple but come on, really? What is this, a 5th grade game of Kick the Can?
But then I started thinking about how much fun Kick the Can was. How there were super secret covert plans and some people knew about them and whoever didn't was always trying to find out what they were. And the ones with all the plans got a lot of attention. In fact, the ones with the super secret plans were in the power seat the whole game. This is even fun for adults - just look at how adults play paintball or laser tag. Plans are made and secrets are kept or not kept in much the same way that it happens with grade schoolers.
Now, games/play in the workplace is making a comeback. Executives are paying big bucks to play with Legos and have brainstorming sessions. Why? Because a stressed out mind won't work as well and doing the same thing every single day makes us have less new ideas (something that simply cannot happen at a place like Apple). Legos is even building a Serious Play process for workplaces that promises better communication skills and better ideas.
Also, take a look at teams that have a high level of secret plans that also have extreme loyalty and strong bonds. The Military and their secret operations, football teams and their highly guarded playbooks, even Nintendo games and their secret ways to demolish enemies. These groups have formed around their secrets and created a sense of belonging to those "in the know" and an urgency to find out for those who are not.
I don't know if Apple is doing the whole secrecy thing as a really cool version of Kick The Can or if it's extreme team building or just plain paranoia but their history with understanding the psyches of their employees suggests that it's probably deliberate.
Here's some tips on incorporating play into the workplace:
1) Have employees design a new product for your company or take a day to have everyone design a company kite that represents themselves. Kites must fly.
2) Create "Project ______" . This is a secret project that some or all of your employees can work on. This project should be somewhat work related but can be a project that the company always wanted to do and never got a chance. For example, launching an ancillary product or new department.
3) Get a Wii, or a Ping Pong table (a la Threadless). Plan tournament accordingly.
4) Visit a grade school and hold a workshop for kids about your industry. This is also a great way for your team to observe how kids interact and come up with new ideas.
5) take a field trip to a laser tag center.

Overheard: An Actual Conversation

" I think I need to learn how to breathe..... where's the Zen Center again?"


Monday, June 22, 2009

Seriously, The Coolest Pirate Stuff. Ever.

via Brand New
The whole Pirate thing has had it pretty good the last few years. Even when real Somali pirates showed up. Even when people were sort of over it pirates just went back to being pretty cool instead of uber cool. Now one of my favorite authors Dave Eggars (I read A Heartbreaking Work Of Staggering Genius an embarrassing number of times in college. And after college.) has set up a pirate storefront in San Francisco around 826 (an organization that teaches kids creative writing). Check out the goods.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

McVitie's Ad - They're English, But They're Good!

via Design You Trust

A Well Designed Video From The Netherlands!

Come on, feel the Groningen! from MUZIEKTELEVISIE.NL on Vimeo.

Perfect for Sunday viewing.  By DocterSterkenburg (a duo of cinematographer and composer)

Friday, June 19, 2009

Pocket Espresso - Thanks Italy!!

via my adventures in Italy
Why we don't have these delicious treats is beyond me. They even have little tiny straws so people like me that have sudden onsets of coffee attacks can just dive right in. It's like an Epi-pen, but with caffeine! They are only available in Italy right now but Americans love coffee too so, please?

Sweet Slide Laptop Bag

How boring are most laptop bags? This one by Redcamper is really unique and I'm thinking of getting it.

I Pray This Is True

Bleach Black is reporting that AllSaints is opening in NY!!! Yippee!!!!


Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Leaving Your Job And Why It's Exactly Like Schizophrenia.

I left my job this week, the details of which don't really matter.  Things ended well with everyone, security wasn't called, and we promised to stay in touch.
It was anti-climatic actually. 
I thought that doing something as big as changing jobs would be a bigger deal somehow, like part of my identity would be missing.  Like I'd wake up and be either freaked out, enormously exited, endless possibilities,  or..... something.  I blame social media for the ease of transition.  For example, 20 years ago when you changed jobs or careers, you had to turn in your Rolodex and generally stopped connecting with a lot of the people you knew.  When my Grandfather was laid off a few years ago, it was almost like they had cut off a limb.  His only access to the company news, the employees, etc. was by being at the building.  With social media, my LinkedIn is still there, my Facebook friends still update me on their every move, and my blog is exactly the same as it was last week.  I realized that however superficial my identity is on the Internet, it's permanently attached to me.  That we aren't as defined by our place of employment as we think we are.
Granted, the crazy had to set in since I am melodramatic and cannot let an event like this pass without some kind of existential drama.  Turns out that drama is schizophrenia.  Example: during the course of 1 conversation with New Jersey, I had definitively decided to: start my own company, work for someone else, work on my blog more, open a clothing store, open an art gallery, design a new software,  or some combo of all of those.  He agreed with all of those ideas because he's really supportive and probably a tiny bit frightened of multiple personality me.
I just can't help thinking that since I'm 28 now, the next thing I do is going to have to be good.  Because I always thought that having career schizophrenia was ok if you were in your twenties but not in your thirties and since I'm getting pretty close, I shouldn't still be deciding what I want to be when I grow up right?
So I laid out all of these ideas (there are 6) and tried to find a common thread (there wasn't).  I tried to "gut instinct" them and see which one really stood out (nope).  How could there be a universe in which there are so many different versions of me and how did I not realize this until very recently?  
I think that the older you get, the more these decisions we make (career or otherwise) determine how our life is going to go.  These decisions start to stick longer and have a lasting impact on our lives.  Also, and this is the hard part, choosing one thing means you are probably not going to ever do some of the others.  Maybe I don't even really want a clothing store but the idea that I could have one always pops up at times like these and that's a very tough thing to come to grips with.  Anyone else have to give up a version of themselves (pipe dream?) lately?

Robot That Sweeps Your Desk

MO Action Figure
This little guy is awesome, now I need a robot to keep up my calendar.  And cook.  

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

The Good News For Right Brainers.

I am a "right brain" person and it's pretty easy to tell. This has helped me to stand out as a creative at work and among friends and also made me look really bad because I can't seem to adhere to simple organization tools like ummm.... a calendar. Right brainers are the creative people, the designers, the big picture thinkers, and also the ones that look blankly at you when you ask them for a data report. Of course this is stereotypical, I'm sure some creatives are super organized and can't see the big picture worth a damn but I'm talking generally here.
So I started reading this book called A Whole New Mind" by Daniel Pink. It's so good, especially if you're one of those, like me, that are struggling to figure out where you fit into the mix of business, finance, and other things that computers can calculate.
Here's the premise: Left brainers (accountants, engineers, lawyers, etc.) that have until now been at the top of the business food chain are seeing their jobs being done by computers that can do their work faster and better. However, computers can't really be creative.
Enter social media, an industry filled with networking, conversation, and tone. These are jobs that right brainers excel at because right brainers have skills in the gray areas of conversation, design, aesthetics, and networking.
The good news in the book is that everyone (even tax accountants) is capable of creative thought and has a lot of cool ideas to get you started.
great read so far, check it out creatives!

Firefly, Sweet Tea, And Why I Could Live In Charlotte NC

Firefly Vodka, amazingness not available in a lot of states yet.
Last week when I ventured to North Carolina, I didn't know I was about to fall in love. I didn't even know it when I made a face at sweet tea vodka when it was suggested to me. I refused to order one myself and eventually, someone just proactively decided I'd like it and ordered one while I wasn't paying attention. Only when it a glass of Firefly and water arrived at my table did I fall in love with sweet tea.
You see, we don't really drink sweet tea in Madison. Everyone here drinks "ice tea" and I hate ice tea because it's bitter and not in any way refreshing (my opinion only of course).
Sweet tea is totally different and if you haven't tried a Firefly drink, try one the moment you get to a state that sells it.
I of course went home and proceeded to yap on and on about how awesome sweet tea is and how we could make it, buy it, get it somehow and how ice tea with sugar sprinkled in was not anywhere near the same thing. If anyone has a good way to make it PLEASE send it my way and I'll post it.

Baubike - Like A Square Peg Of Design

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

This Is Architecture

Architecture from MAYAnMAYA on Vimeo.

Great video on architecture and it's meaning from FreshCreation. I really think that architecture and social media are so similar because they both take the intended use of the product (or site, or blog) into account when they are made. Super interesting stuff!

Splitting The Check. What Does That Mean?

This isn't going to be about who pays for what on a date and how whoever asks for the date should pay or should the guy pay or logistics like that. This is going to be about check splitting and what that means about your relationship.
I was talking to my new friend Calloway yesterday about this and recalled that this was the 3rd conversation like this I'd had lately about this topic of finance and relationships and what it means.
1) If you are check splitting at the table a few months in, that's not a good sign. This is totally different than one person picking up the check one time and the other person picking it up the next time. I am all for paying half of the expenses for a relationship. Splitting the check at the table though could be indicative of a reluctance to commit. Paying for half of everything when it occurs kind of feels like there may not be a next time. Hence why I generally insist on paying for my way on a first date but not on the tenth.
Calloway puts this much more bluntly than I do - he says you're basically "friends with benefits" if you're doing this.
2) Guys (or girls for that matter) that won't let you pay for anything are going to feel like they need a more macho role in a relationship. Hear me out on this. Control of the finances in a relationship is a big deal. Some people don't want that control so they do very well with a person that wants their hand on the money at all times. I'm not knocking women(or men) that don't want to handle any bills, just that they better be dating someone that wants that responsibility.

As a rule of thumb I like to try to keep things pretty even when it comes to money. I think when you are in your twenties and money flow is less secure that allowing someone to pay for everything can be a major strain on the relationship should someone's financial situation change.
However, if you are still divvying up the check at the restaurant with someone you've been with for months, you might want to take a look at the level of commitment you both have to moving forward.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Heinz Gets Transparent In New Zealand

Heinz launched their Pure New Zealand frozen veggies in awesome transparent (and cheeky) packaging. The website even has bios and pictures of the exact farmer that grew your vegetables.
"No dodgy claims, just perfect peas" - what a great tagline.
via Dieline

Monday, June 8, 2009

Yelle Covers Robyn's "Who's That Girl"

What To Wear To Work: Part 1 - Black.

I have had a lot of moments in the last few months where I'm standing in front of my closet wondering what I'm expected to show up in at work today. Client meetings, speeches, networking events, etc. all call for a different approach and your attire says a lot about you, like it or not.
In my opinion, social media people shouldn't look like bankers. Maybe some of you disagree and think that the business suit works in all fields at all times but I think that with a lot of clients, a social media team filing into their conference room in business suits can be intimidating. Let's face it, we're going to be talking about Facebook, commenting on blogs, and using the word "widget" with a straight face. This doesn't have to be done in a business suit.
Because of this, I wear a ton of black. Beyond the obvious that black doesn't look wrinkly when it is and hides stains if you are a coffee spiller, there are some good reasons to choose black as your go-to business clothing color.
1) Black always looks semi expensive. Cheap colored dyes look cheap. Cheap material in a light color looks cheap. Black makes it hard to tell what you paid for an item and that's a good thing.
2) Black does not go out of style. Ever. This is great because almost every color has it's day in the sun as the "it" color and however subtle, you date yourself when you wear the lime green 2 months past that time. If you're busy and can't keep up with this, just wear black.
3) Black is soothing. Ever notice that spa and salon employees always wear all black? It's to hide hair and dye of course but (and maybe it's just me) whenever I see a sleek woman in all black I get that warm "I'm about to have a beauty treatment" feeling. If I have that feeling in my head when I meet new clients, there's less of a chance that I'll be a stress case.
4) You can look super stylish by adding accessories. You know the neon that everyone's sporting right now? Wear an all black outfit with a neon pink scarf or bright earrings. Next fall, when the trend is bohemian metals, you can simply retire the scarf in favor of some dangly antique earrings and you didn't have to replace the entire outfit.

I recently found the most amazing black pants ever. I tried on approximately (Bianca back me up on this) 200 pairs of black pants in Denver looking for the perfect pair of comfy but formal-ish black pants. I found them at Black House White Market and they aren't on the website but they are available in gaucho length and long. They are soft and flowy and totally worth the $78. Perfect for traveling (I cannot stand wearing sweats on a plane but want to be comfortable).

photos from lookbook.nu

Sunday, June 7, 2009

A Creative Person You Should Know About: Lucy McLauchlan

What Makes Taste?

There’s a common attribute that makes for good designers, good engineers, good employees, and good companies. For a long time, I couldn’t figure out what it was. Was it practice? Was it skill? Was it innate ability? Turns out, it’s none of those. It’s taste.

Dustin Curtis, in his ongoing American Airlines saga

What Consumes Me

via Swiss Miss

Even If I Have To Go To San Francisco To Get Them.

My obsession with the long chains started when I was having brunch in Wicker Park and I noticed this girl wearing some at the bar. I have been talking about them ever since. These are from litterSF. Is jewelery a legit reason to plan a trip to SF?

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Your Analytics Are Already Out There....You Just Need To Read Them

If you like my blog for the fashion and the gadgets, you can probably skip this post but I'm at the Online Marketing Summit in Denver (by the way, the cab problem that I had in Minneapolis? Happened again this morning in Denver. I didn't get kicked out but the 2 cab drivers were about to get into a fistfight over who got to drive me the 8 blocks to my conference. Someone should look into this...).
Anyway, I've been talking to a lot of companies big and small, people who want to start a community or a blog and there's a lot of talk about analytics going on here. There's a lot of apprehension as to where to start on the road to the perfect social media effort. If you are one of those people you should know one thing:
Some of your analytics are free and already out there just waiting for you to start analyzing them. Go to Twitter, go to Google Blogs, go to Yacktrack.com and find out what people are talking about when it comes to your brand or your industry.
Why do you need to know this?
So you don't waste time and money trying to figure out how your audience wants to hear from you. They are already having the conversation, you just need to listen.
Maybe you are a hotel chain and you're wondering how you should use your dollars to expand your services. You might decide that you should have extended room service hours and menus. You might then do some buzz searching and find out that a lot of people are really upset because they are waiting up to 30 minutes to get their cars back from valet. There could be a lot of people complaining on blogs, Twitter, or review sites about this topic. By changing your plan to respond to complaints you will ensure that your guests have a better experience with you.
Plus, you'll seem like a hero when a satisfied guest posts that they have not had this problem at your hotel.
Once you start listening, you'll wonder how you ever came up with a plan before. It's like having a mini focus group at your disposal, use it!

Does Professional Attire Even Exist Anymore?

I'm sure some people still have to wear the proverbial business suit to work. I'm also sure this will always be the case, but more and more I'm noticing people wearing, well, exactly what they want to conferences, the office, and meetings and I wonder if every day isn't business casual day now.
While I love that people are more free to choose how they represent themselves at work (there is so much more out there than just Ye Olde Business Suit), I am pretty surprised at what is passing these days.
On the flip side, it's expensive to be "business trendy" all the time. And for people who aren't really into fashion, this can be daunting.
How much does our attire really say about us at work? I see tons of Creative Directors that feel they have to dress the part, same goes for advertising and marketing.
This will kick off a series of posts on dressing for the workplace if you need to break out of the business suit routine and aren't sure how.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

My Milk Toof!

I don't know what a milk toof is but this blog of photos is really random and cool.

I'd Buy It If I Could Find It.

This Ben Sherman shirt is awesome and I would definitely buy it if only I could find it. It's the center of their ad campaign but it's nowhere on the site. What a tease!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Can I Rock This?

Pamela Love has got some pretty out-there jewelery most of which I probably wouldn't wear. These earrings are really interesting though.


Minneapolis Gets Random. I Get Kicked Out Of A Cab.

I'm in Minneapolis today for the Online Marketing Summit so I called a cab this morning and waited in the lobby for it. When the cab appeared, I got in.
To make a long story short, I apparently got into the "wrong cab" (hotels make deals with cab companies I guess and get extremely territorial). We get a few blocks along and the cab driver gets an angry dispatch (presumably about me) and commences a conversation abut returning me to the hotel. The driver then whips around and says "you have to go back, your cab is there now".
"ummmm..... what? no, that's stupid, you were there you should just take me." The cab driver is turning around and taking me back to the hotel to take the right cab. I am yelling obscenities in the back. It's 7AM.
So the driver pulls over and kicks me out of the cab. At 7AM. In the middle of downtown Minneapolis. I decide that I will simply walk however far I have to and get there myself and I start composing my comment card to the hotel in my head. Along the way, I come across this:

It's in a grassy spot on my 15 minute walk to the venue. How cool and random, it cheered me up.

Monday, June 1, 2009


So, today kicks off what promises to be a week of craziness that started this morning in Madison and ended tonight in Minneapolis. I've agreed to do some more speaking engagements (after the last one went well sans Xanax, I figured I'd do some more) so I'm in Minneapolis today and tomorrow and Denver on Thursday.
Since this year has kind of been my "year of trying to find some semblance of balance", I'm assuming (correctly so far) that this week will ruin all of that. I ended up not eating anything until 2PM (danger), and then having to walk 800 blocks to find "something I feel like eating". This means that I knew I should have a salad or something healthy for my tired body and gave myself 800 blocks to convince myself to have whatever the hell I wanted which was anything with bread, salt, and/or cheese. I had to change hotels during my layover in Chicago (don't even ask) and I'm the kind of person where changes to plans last minute make me crazy. The highlight of the day was this tomato and avocado flatbread at Zelo's. It was absolutely exactly what I needed.