As a side project, I have been designing and building these bent wood bicycle trays. Needless to say, I’ve spent a lot of time in the wood shop working with a variety of wood working tools. It has been a while since I have used a bandsaw and table router. It feels so satisfying to be making something tangible with my hands. Like most designers, I spend a lot of time in front of my laptop or reading and talking about design.
Out on another tour of an amazing local startup, GlassyBaby in the Madrona neighborhood in Seattle, WA. If you haven’t heard of them, you should look them up. They are a high end, beautiful, glass tea light candles. Originally created as small gifts for friends, GlassyBaby has quickly grown to a large studio.
On a cold and wet Thursday morning, I made my way down to the SoDo neighborhood in Seattle WA, to tour the GrayPants studio. Deep inside the industrial neighborhood, tucked in behind large anonymous buildings sits an old wooden building previously used for boat building. This is the home of GrayPants.
The first phase of my primary research for my master thesis project started with some making. After getting a quick refresher tutorial from designer Abigail Steinem, I designed and made hand bound journals for my research participants to record their news consumption habits for a week and a half. I recruited (with the help of Kristine Matthews, my thesis chair) a class of juniors at the University of Washington. The journals were an interesting challenge. In order for them to not become a chore they needed to be simple and straight forward. They also were made small and sturdy so that the students could easily keep the journals on them at all times.