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GRAND DESIGNS LIVE


It’s 6.30am , so this is a very quick post with some news that John was shortlisted for the Grand Designs Product of the Year. He made it to the last three from 800 entrants and picked up the highly commended award from Kevin MacCloud at last nights award ceremony.

We’re sharing a stand at the Grand Designs Live show at Excel in London which is on until Sunday 8th. We’re just exhibiting two products; John’s Embrace table and my new Word Map. The maps have been selling really well and I’m very worried that there’s not enough stock to last the weekend!
I’ll post with more details when we return from London on Monday.
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BIRD BOX

Couldn’t resist a quick post showing the very nice packaging for the new Qualy Sparrow key ring. Good packaging is always a pleasure, it helps to sell a product and brighten up our shelves too.

The little sparrow is also a whistle, and comes with its own wall mounted bird house where you hang your keys when you come home.
We will add these to our site soon along with a few other new things.
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LIGHTIN

New light – tin from Thomas Stanley. Thomas is a recent graduate from Northumbria University and has since launched his own design practice, Lightin is his first product available commercially and it retails for £34.95.
Lightin utilises a very minimal CNC bent wire frame, which neatly wraps it’s self around a standard beer can, the recycled beer can encases an LED spotlight bulb that is capable of lasting 50,000 hours if left on constantly, thats 5 years and 7 months or 20 halogen bulbs.
I think it’s cool, although I’m sure Angus would much prefer it with a wine bottle on the end 😉
Also lightin has been designed and manufactured in the UK.
John
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BOBBLE ROAD TEST

We’ve just got back from ‘Ambiente’ the design fair in Frankfurt………what a great show! It was huge and filled with exciting and inspiring products, so I’m sure snowhome will have a few more best sellers to come as a result.

Whilst we were away Angus took his ‘Bobble’ water bottle (featured below) and everytime he slipped it out of his bag for a drink I was jealous. In total I spent 12euro’s on bottled water over the 3 days we were there. Everytime I went to buy water angus went to the toilet and filled up his ‘Bobble’ saving him 12euro, so that’s definately paid for itself.
On our first day back since the fair we have just taken delivery of 100’s of Bobbles and replacement filters……………………….I know what I’ll be buying after today’s shift. Check out Karim’s little chat about the design:

I’m sure Angus will be doing a nice big post about our trip to Frankfurt and some of the great finds, so I’ll finish here!

John

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PEN LOOP

A great find for us at top drawer a few weeks ago. Pen Loop by the German company Leuchtturm. Leuchtturm have been around since 1917 making quality notebooks and diary’s claiming to be as original as the moleskine, whether they are or not we’re not sure but what we do know is that the pen clip is a great product.

Simply stick this self adhesive tab into the back of your notebook and leave the elastic loop protruding for your pen or pencil. They come in various vibrant colour which we think makes them perfect for archiving/identifying your black leather (identical) notebooks. Yellow could be used for your travel notebook, blue for your sketchbook and red for the notebook that has your plans for taking over the world…..blah blah blah………you get the idea.
I thought I’d blog this as I think it fits the snowhome criteria for a perfect product:
Affordable: yep, only £2.50.
Functional: very easy to use, has made my pen easier to find ever since I took a sample from the show 2 weeks ago. Now, as soon as I pick up my sketchbook I have a pen in my hand, non of that rooting round the bottom of my bag for one anymore.
Aesthetics: Nice minimal coloured stripe hanging out of the plain black mundane notebook, that’s pretty enough for us.
Packaging: very nice, explains the product instantly, and looks like an actual notebook and fits perfectly into the Moleskine merchandiser on our counter. Packaging image below.
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BETTER WATER


I’ve just placed our first order for Bobble. Bobble is a new self filering water bottle , I have to say that I’m excited about their arrival.

Bobble is a simple idea that aims to reduce the environmental impact created by the global bottled mineral water industry. In the UK alone there were over two billion litres of bottled water drunk last year , thats a lot of money spent and a huge amount of empty plastic bottles. Each year nearly 1.5 million barrels of oil are used to make these bottles, many of them up in landfill or floating in our oceans – not an elegant design solution.

The people at Bobble want to change the way we drink water; The bobble water bottle is made from recycled PET ( free from harmful phthalates and PVC )with a coloured carbon filter that filters tap water and can be used over 300 times before a new carbon filter is needed. You get great tasting healthy water each time you fill it.

It’s curvy form is designed by designer Karim Rashid who has designed, among other things, the Issey Miyake perfume bottle and watches for Alessi .

We hope to get our delivery around the 10th February, the price will be £9.95. They are already on our site for pre-orders. Click here to order
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DIRTY WORK

Hello and Happy 2011 to all blog readers.

As the year stretches ahead in all it’s uncertainty we are planning out our ideas and goals.
The shop was hectic during December minus the lost days for heavy snow and it’s now time to tidy up and have a mini sale. I always think the shop looks a bit scrappy for the first few weeks of the new year, the stock is low and we generally sell off some of our shop models and last of lines.
Things have a feeling of being in transition as we enter the buying season and head off in search of new stock at the trade shows.
Buying stock for the shop is one of the most enjoyable parts of my job, it does however seem to get more difficult to find interesting products that fit the snowhome brief.
So without asking you to do my dirty work if you are a designer or a shopper please feel free to get in touch with any product ideas that you feel may fit nicely into our eclectic range.
I’m very tempted by the wooden Magno radios, what do you think?……
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BROCCOLLI STILL IN SEASON (JUST)

These are new in and we love them. Tea towels by stuart Gardiner that show which British fruit and veg are in season. There is also another design showing seasonality of British wild foods. Now is the time to be gathering sloe berries, field mushrooms and crab apples. The tea towels are £9.95 and are selling like hot cakes in the shop, we will add them to our web store very soon.

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SIMPLE SHELF


Its always nice to receive a new product from a designer that we respect. The Ledge Shelf by Domesticity is such a good example of of a simple, functional and affordable product. We have both the white and black ones in stock and they cost £20 each. They will be added to the site in the next day or two.

John is now back from his epic John O’Groats to Lands End bike ride, well done to the three of them for completing the trip in only 10 days.
I’m away this weekend for our annual family olympics. A weekend of highly competitive team sports such as carrot darts and a swimming egg and spoon relay. I fancy my team’s chances of gold this year ( but I say that every year ! )
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BEAUTIFUL INFORMATION


I ordered a couple of copies of the book”Information is beautiful” by David McCandless to sell in the shop. I have to admit to keeping one for myself – it’s such a lovely book.
The concept is fairly simple: to visualise information and present it graphically. The results are so engaging. Text is kept to a minimum and colourful graphs, charts and modern day maps dominate. These graphics illustrate the relationship between facts and the the connections that give information true meaning.
Subject matter is varied too and includes rock geneology, carbon emissions, IQ in relation to job title ( hairdressers come out badly! ) and most popular Google search phrases.
David McCandless describes his book as ” A series of experiments in making information approachable and beautiful.” In my mind his experiments have been a success and wholeheartedly recommend the book.
It has prompted me to consider adding a “book” section to the website, in the meantime heres a link to the Information is beautiful website.
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