1. Compact Swivel Cheese Board with Knives
How do shards of colored glass become beautiful, illuminated mini-mosaics? Vawn and Mike Gray answer that question with this video taking us through their step-by-step process.
The video certainly brightened our day, but the technique used to create them isn’t the only thing inspiring about Vawn and Mike’s nightlights. Each piece is actually made from recycled bottle glass. To learn more about how the Grays turn used bottles into an assortment of colorful glass pieces, check out their Smasher video.
Product: DIY Brooklyn Skyline Kits
I think images of artwork are great. But I think videos of artwork being created are so much better. That must mean that GoPro videos from the perspective of the artist creating a piece are the best! At least that’s my theory… which brings us to today’s Gift Lab. I took you out to the beach in my last blog post to demo a product. This time around, you’re going inside my head to see something cool get built from the bottom up.
Our DIY Brooklyn Skyline Kits offer the chance for you to craft a mini version of two signature structures in New York, the Kentile Floors sign and your ordinary rooftop water tower. It caught my eye after I saw the two shots of custom designed water towers on our product page.
Perfect product to test my theory with! First off, these are hot. Nice job Zero Productivity and Atomiko. But more importantly, I can gauge how well we’re able to see something being constructed and designed, without spending hours on hours doing it. I haven’t drawn anything in years. A lot of effort would’ve been needed to produce something that gives my 5-year-old self some competition.
I was also glad to see that two different versions of the kit existed. While doing research on best practices for filming (read: watching GoPro videos on Youtube), I found it difficult to tell which GoPro dock to use for this; chest mount or head mount? So I bought both. I decided that I’d use one mount for one kit and another mount for the other.
Two DIY Brooklyn Skyline kits, two mounts, and one GoPro in hand later… the test was ready to begin.
I started with the Water Tower kit first, for no other reason than wanting to get closer to fantasizing about being a graffiti artist. After I laid all of the cardboard pieces on the table as instructed, I strapped the GoPro chest mount on, pressed record and got to work.
Now it was time to design it. I grabbed a pack of Crayola markers and started doodling.
The first immediate takeaway – Tagging my water tower before building it would’ve been the better idea. The advantage of utilizing a flat surface didn’t cross my mind even slightly; until it was time to record myself doing it. That explains the split between the clips. I had to game plan.
The other thing was the actual video. In order to learn more about using the GoPro, I turned to Wistia.com’s #GoProWeek as a resource. Every day for that week, they shared a different pro tip (no pun intended) for getting the best shot. One of the techniques I used was the time-lapse recording feature that snaps pictures every few seconds, instead of actually recording straight through. I wasn’t a fan of the final result, because the footage came out too choppy. I think I set the timer in between shots too far apart. I decided to make sure to use the other recommended method for the next kit; shooting normally and speeding up the footage in a video editor.
Besides that, the rest of the process was smooth sailing and more fun than expected. The maker’s of the kits provided clear step-by-step assembly directions and all pieces worked as intended. Any edge that needed folding went over smoothly. The laser cut tabs and indents fit perfectly into each other. Connecting the pieces was a snap (that pun, intended). The biggest surprise was the glue; it did not leave a mess on my hands or the table I worked on. It comes already setup in drops that are separated by perforated plastic. When the instructions tell you to grab one, just rip one dot from the pack, peel off the plastic covering, and apply to the marked area. That easy.
Next up was recording the Kentile Floors sign DIY kit with the GoPro attached to the head mount. You’ll notice that it begins with me filling in the letters first, and then moving on to putting it together.
The simplicity of the structure’s design made assembly much quicker. There wasn’t much of a surface to draw on but filling in the narrow letters required a little bit of time. I really like the point of view that the head cam captured. It feels like you’re actually putting it together rather than observing someone else do it.
All in all, I’m convinced that my theory is correct. Watching art creation from a GoPro perspective is a cool experience that helps anyone appreciate the process behind the final result more. It’s amazing to see what goes into pieces, especially from our assortment, I’d imagine. We have a wide selection of uncommon goods that obviously require an uncommon approach to create.
In retrospect, I see where areas for improvement lay. In a future flick, I would:
The Skyline Kits made for a great GoPro test run, and I’d definitely recommend them to someone looking for a fun and easy DIY. What’s even better? I’m left with two new desk additions that visitors can stop and admire. Long overdue, since the Levitron Lamp had been retired for some time now.
Our Founder and CEO Dave Bolotsky supports raising the federal minimum wage. So do many business owners across the country. Check out this video from Business for a Fair Minimum Wage to learn why. To show your support, spread the message by sharing this video with the hashtag #RaisetheWage and help “give America a raise.”
Last month we hosted another How To Make It design panel event at Brooklyn’s Union Hall where Seth Walter from our Purchasing Team and Jason Feinberg, the CEO & Creative Director of FCTRY, discussed the decisions you should make while pricing your designs for retail. We got a little off-topic as the guests in our audience had really great questions, but we think you might get some great advice from our answers. Check out clips from the event and the conversation it its entirety below!
How much should you pay yourself for a handmade design?
MAP (Minimum Advertised Price)
Should a wholesale price be fixed?
How to price a collection of designs.
Is scaling up always the best idea?
How does UncommonGoods find new artists?
Two common mistakes made in pricing handmade designs.
FULL VIDEO COMING SOON!
Tweens lie in that awkward stage between youth and teenage-hood. It’s a confusing time, but mostly for those shopping for one! Rocky of our Marketing Team shares his favorite gifts that are bound to make a mark. Visit here to see the entire collection.
Whether she is already your Mother-in-Law or the mum of your significant other, it is really important to impress her this holiday season. Tabletop Buyer Candace shares some gift ideas that will make her smile in this collection.