Functional Play

I’m lucky. I have two sweet nieces. Lovely little ladies they are. When selecting a gift for them I can’t help but look for well designed,  useful and experiential objects. It is a joy to share with even the youngest among us, the power of great design. Elements of color and composition, graphic clarity and playfulness must appeal to this set of inquisitive thinkers. Don’t you think? I personally find these designer blocks to be irresistible! Not only do these indestructible playthings invite us to build and explore, they offer a lesson in Modern Architecture and Graphic design.

Above, Eames House Blocks.
Each set of 36 replenishable Michigan-grown basswood blocks represents 29 separate hand-pulled screen passes. In the true Eames spirit, your kids can create a ligneous yard sale on your living room rug while you’re in deep conversation with your guests, then build this living landmark.

Debossed Neutraface Slab Pattern.
“This compact set of 12 Neutraface Slab alphabet blocks above will transmit subliminal stylistic messages to young impressionable minds.”

Alexander Girard Alphabet Blocks
Created by House Industries in a collaboration with the estate of renowned mid-century designer Alexander Girard, the 28 wood blocks feature alphabets based on the Alexander Girard font collection and a cleverly-adapted House Industries factory logo puzzle.

Photo Lettering Blocks
Handmade with House Industries own Photo-Lettering library.


All the block sets above are offered by House Industries.

  • Made in the USA
  • Replenishable Michigan-grown, kiln-dried basswood.
  • Printed with non-toxic, lead-free child-safe inks.

All images and excerpts found at House Industries website.




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You’ve Got My Number

This spring Heath Ceramics is introducing a drop-dead-gorgeous new line of house numbers. These 3-dimensional clay tiles celebrate the legendary Neutra and Eames number fonts. Of course they would be fitting on a midcentury modern house, in fact I'd love them on mine, but I can also imagine them gracing the interior of a home as each tile is a spectacular work of art.
Founded by Edith Heath in the mid-fourties, Heath ceramics is one of the few remaining mid-century american potteries still in existence today. They have been making tableware and tile for over a half-century in their Sausalito California studio. Their time honored process is one of quality craftsmanship and attention to detail. I believe every bit of the artful design and preparation of their work is reflected in the collectible pieces they produce. A glimpse into the tile making process for these newly introduced house numbers, gives us insight into their custom color development, and handcraft. All of Heath ceramics’ clay is made on-site. It’s extruded and cut into pieces in preparation for forming. The clay is pressed and then cut into specific sizes for an order. Edges of the tiles are hand finished and glazes are made on-site and applied by hand. A recognizable brand, I love the fact that the original box designed 40 years ago, is still used today. Timeless.
All images and excerpts,  Heath Ceramics.

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