Craft Based Building Methods

It seems in many parts of the world the rich history of regional building method is becoming something of a lost art. These construction practices often focus on use of indigenous materials, and are passed down from generation to generation through the shared process of hand craft. Because they are focused on local material and local skilled labor, the results are sensitive to both culture and environment. The connection provided in the creation the built work also supports building of another kind; the building blocks inherent in a strong sense of community.
Dutch architect Arjen Reas has married beautifully the art of traditional building method and rural architectural form, with modern design clarity. This home is located at the point of transition between urban and rural environments, which is reflected in the choices of material, form and finish. A wonderful expression, and addition to the landscape.

Images and excerpts sourced at dailytonic.

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Handmade Halloween

A handmade Halloween. There is something special about creating a costume, especially for children. An opportunity for creative imaginations to soar. I came across the image above, very much in the spirit of the process we embrace with our boys. A wonderful paper bird mask by the talented crew over at Sweet Paul Magazine. If you are looking for a last minute costume, Paul’s step by step instructions follow. Have fun designing, and please, send me your pictures!

 Images and excerpts sourced at Sweet Paul Magazine

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Collectible Bowls by Bob Stocksdale

Personally, I adhere to the modernist mantra of objects of necessity and usefulness as foundation for the decor of the home. While perusing 1stdibs recently, I came across a stunning collection of useable art, a series of gorgeous handmade bowls by Bob Stocksdale. Signed by the artist, these vessels will only increase in value over time, with enjoyment and care. Perfect to display, offering interest to the space, as well as a wonderful conversation piece, they are worthy of our affection and tending. I love the subtle textural quality resulting from the inherent character of each wood species. Carefully inscribed on the base of each basin for the curious to discover the secret beauty of these wooden treasures. Each bowl a different shape and size, responding I believe, to the nature of the material and the patterning offered. What a gift.

Images sourced at  1stdibs




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DIY Lovely Linen

These lovely linen towels and napkins were created by Jenny Steffen Hobick. They have an artful yet modern quality, and are perfect for gift giving or use at home. The custom colors Jenny uses are neutral enough to fit into any decor, but these cloths could be created to fit into any desired color scheme. Easy to make with fabric paint and painters tape, the linen cloth can be sewn to finished size with a machine or simple hand stitch. These are at the top of my summer to do list, for gift giving. The detail of the embroidered monogram is a nice touch as well, subtle due to the careful color choice and placement.


Sourced at Jenny Steffens blogspot.


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Mr. Graham Thompson of Chicago’s Optimo Hats reminds us that the fine craft of hat making is a true art form. Belief in the process of creating a hat made perfectly for each individual, Graham focus’ on fitting your personality as well as your head. Designed for both style and comfort, the weight and texture of the felt and straw are carefully considered. The proportion, length of the brim, and height of the crown, are all important design elements for a well fitting hat. Graham doesn’t advertise. His clients seek out the quality and craftsmanship reflected in his work. With that said, he is well known is his market niche, and often appears in print, television and movies. These beautiful objects are built for the long haul. Graham offers service for your investment, using an extensive collection of block and molds. There is something to be said for a passion so deep that it lives on in others. I respect the dedication to these handcrafted, slow built, process centered garments. Built to last a lifetime.

Images sourced at


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