Sarai Mitnick left her tech job in Oakland, CA eight years ago with a heart for designing and publishing sewing patterns for women who wanted to make their own clothes. “It was something I felt deeply passionate about, but I couldn’t afford to start a business in the San Francisco area.” Sarai and her husband, Kenn Wilson, founded Colette Patterns in 2009, a publishing company that creates home sewing patterns, books and an online magazine called Seamwork for sewists of all experience levels. Since then, Colette has grown to an office of 11 enthusiastic and creative people with the goal to revive the art of sewing and home garment making. Their modern taste and variety give followers an open invitation and resources to curate a wardrobe with their own hands.
The couple has been a part of their current neighborhood since the move, and they feel fortunate to have found a house in the same area five years ago. “It’s really walkable and there are plenty of restaurants and bars around, but it’s still quiet and residential. I feel incredibly thankful that we get to own a home in such a wonderful neighborhood,” Sarai shares. Working with a small budget, Sarai and Kenn looked at a dozens of “run-down, creepy, smelly places” before walking into their 1923 colonial revival house. Sarai grew up in an old house and couldn’t imagine living in a space that lacked historic character and charm. They immediately refinished all the original floors, which had been covered with Pergo laminate, and coated the rooms with soft, cool colors to reflect as much natural light as possible and counteract dark Portland days. “One of the rooms was painted bright turquoise, including the ceiling, and the floor was painted shiny white. Because the floor reflected the turquoise, it gave the appearance of blue skin when you walked in!” After the initial renovations, they started taking care of little things like lighting and shelves, and tried not to overthink how the house should look, but focused on finding décor that captured their interests. “I tend to just collect things that feel like me or that I find particularly beautiful,” Sarai shares. “I like the way a house evolves over time and reflects the people who live there. That’s more important to me than whether or not it looks perfect.”
Sarai and Kenn work together all day, so their primary goal for the home was to create a space to recharge. Sarai believes that a home should, “inspire serenity and a certain amount of curiosity.” The space has a natural, homemade air with a penchant for vintage imagery, floral patterns and quiet, cozy vignettes that provide the perfect escape from an active lifestyle. Surrounding themselves with books, photographs, art and other personal items helps Sarai and Kenn unwind and activate the emotions they want to experience when they are home. “It’s like a good cup of coffee, relaxing and stimulating at the same time.” —Bethany Joy Foss
Photography by Sarai Mitnick
Brooklyn-based WORKSTEAD recently launched a collection of minimalist lighting that features acrylic globes secured by metal pins to a metal canopy giving an almost hieroglyphic look. Each fixture, which comes in brass or bronze, is outfitted with a matching pull chain that has a metal rod attached to the chain.
The collection can be purchase from WORKSTEAD, or if you’re in the UK, from Another Country.
The following post is brought to you by ChefSteps. Our partners are hand picked by the Design Milk team because they represent the best in design.
Despite being a favorite of molecular gastronomists for years, only recently has sous vide cooking become achievable for the home cook. For those who aren’t as familiar with sous vide cooking, it’s similar to poaching, but much more precise. Sous vide cooking is when a chef cooks meat and vegetables in a controlled water bath at a very specific temperature. This results in the food being cooked at the right temperature, without losing moisture or flavor. Enter, the Joule. The Joule is a modern-day, affordable solution for home-cooks to bring the science and convenience of sous vide cooking into their own home. We give it a spin.
Unlike previous iterations of the home sous vide machine, which were the size of microwaves, the Joule is small, light, and sleek. It’s a simple wand with a single cord, and takes up minimal space. To get started cooking, all you need is the Joule, a large pot or container, plastic bags, clip, and your smartphone.
ChefSteps, which makes the Joule, states that it’s incredibly easy to use. I’d have to agree. I’ve used other sous vide machines before, and none were as easy to use as the Joule. There is minimal set-up—all you need to do is put it in a vat of warm water, clasp it on the side, plug it in and press a button on the top. For someone who hates reading instructions, the ease of set-up is a huge plus. You also have to download the app to be able to run the Joule, as well as create an account. While it was slightly annoying to have to sign up while I was getting ready to cook, it wasn’t by any means, a deal breaker. Once you download the app, it has a very helpful onboarding system, with an interactive step by step system to help you get acquainted with the Joule. I didn’t have this with the previous sous vide machines I used, and I felt like it made a big difference.
My only minor qualm was at one point, it seemed to be too easy. With my previous experience using sous vide machines, I knew the bags have to be airtight. I used a Foodsaver previously, and I dug around the ChefSteps website to see if I needed a Foodsaver. Everywhere I read, it said I only needed a plastic bag, which sounded a little suspicious to me. It was difficult to find (which was frustrating) but eventually I realized I can use the water dispersion method to ensure that the bag was airtight, and clip it to the container. The whole time I was cooking, I was a little iffy about this but as you’ll see, it worked.
Once I felt prepared, it was time to start cooking. With the Joule, the phrase “set it and forget it” takes on a whole new meaning. You can either set the temperature manually depending on what you want to cook, or if you’re new, simply choose a recipe, and it’ll set the temperature and timer for you. As I was doing a side-by-side comparison, I set the temperature to what I wanted. Unlike boiling water, the Joule got the water bath to be at the right temperature very quickly—in under five minutes.
I decided to test the Joule with steak and eggs because it’s easy to see how changing the temperature by a little bit can drastically alter the end result. The thing about sous vide is that it’s also supposed to work like magic, in a way. You should be able to take cheaper, rougher cuts of meat and still cook it so it’s perfectly juicy and not overcooked. ChefSteps recommends going with a thicker cut of steak, so I chose a 1.5″ top sirloin steak with minimal marbling. Normally, I personally veer away from these cuts because it tends to be dry, but it was a perfect meat for the Joule test run.
I cut the steak into three pieces and cooked it at three different temperatures, 129 degrees F (rare), 136 degrees F (medium), and 154 degrees F (well done) for one hour. The app has a timer and alerts you when your food is ready.
When you see the steak immediately after being sous vide, it has an unappetizing, slightly grayish pallor to it, which might confuse first time sous vide users but is completely normal. You are supposed to sear it afterwards to give it a nice crust on the outside. At this point, I was a little conflicted as to whether or not I should sear it, because in my thinking, it seems like you’d be cooking the steak and thus, defeating the whole purpose of cooking it precisely with the Joule. However, the sear is so brief that it doesn’t cook the inside of the steak—it merely gives it a nice brown on the outside.
Though the rare and medium look closer in color, the difference in texture and even juice, is palpable.
Though rare and medium look a little closer in color, the texture was very different when slicing.
Next, we tested three different eggs at three different temperatures—64 degrees C, 68 degrees C, and 72 degrees C for one hour (We used Celsius for temperature accuracy). Though it seems like it might be easier, getting the right temperature and time for eggs was much more difficult. With eggs, you not only have to worry about the yolk being the right texture, but also the whites. The whites are the most fickle. What seems like a dramatic change in temperature can only slightly affect the whites (as you’ll see), but dramatically affect the yolks.
As you can see, methodically cooking the eggs at 4 degrees C higher showed a consistent firming of the yolk, but for some reason the egg whites at 64 and 68 degrees C didn’t change much. The Joule app also lacked recipes for any eggs besides a poached or soft boiled egg. However, they do have an egg calculator on desktop, which would be handier in the app. I do think though, practice makes perfect in this situation. The difficulty with eggs is not a unique problem for the Joule, I also had the same issues with other sous vide machines. All three of them had sticky whites as well, and peeling them was much more difficult than peeling eggs I had cooked with a pot.
I would describe myself as a cooking enthusiast, and the Joule fits into my lifestyle perfectly, especially when I want to just “set it and forget it.” However, I would say it takes some of the experimentation out of cooking, and can also end up taking longer time than just throwing a steak on the grill. However, it also takes the guesswork and meticulous time-suck that cooking can sometimes result in. You don’t have to babysit the food while it cooks, just let it do its thing. That means one can get all fancy with the toppings, like create a rosemary clarified butter or whatever your heart desires.
Set-up was ridiculously easy, and the app was really helpful with all the videos and onboarding they do to get a user comfortable with the product. It doesn’t take a lot of space, which is a huge plus as a city dweller. My only qualm is with the recipes. The app doesn’t have all the recipes, in fact it has less than I would expect in an accompanying app. There are also “free” recipes and “premium” options, where you get more recipes and more sous vide/cooking classes as well. However, I do know that this is something they’re working on, and are about to release a whole slew of helpful guides, including a roast guide and CUSTARD guide (um whoa). I’m looking forward to seeing the new recipe guides to help me push my sous vide cooking in a new direction, beyond the classic steak and eggs.
The overall consensus? Love the Joule.
Located in the Rue d’Edimbourg in a music loving neighborhood, the Idol Hotel is a colorful Parisian boutique hotel that pays homage to its neighbors, like the Municipal Conservatory of Paris and nearby instrument makers. It’s no surprise that renowned hotel designer Julie Gauthron is the woman behind the bold and unforgettable interior, which meant we had to take a look for this Destination Design.
Gauthron designed the interior around music, particularly funk, soul, and jungle music from the 60s, 70s, and 80s, which you’ll see throughout. The hotel has 32 rooms, including 5 suites, each centered around a different color palette and theme, helping to immerse guests into a full-on music experience.
The dramatic rooms, each appropriately named, inspire vibes of Parisian playfulness with showers and tubs on full display.
What: Idol Hotel Paris
Where: 16, Rue d’Edimbourg 75008 Paris, France
How much? Rooms start at approximately $119 and up per night
Highlights: Convenient location in a neighborhood of music lovers, curated rooms with a Parisian playfulness
Design draw: A bold and colorful interior designed around music, particularly funk, soul, and jungle music from the 60s, 70s, and 80s,
Book it: Visit the Idol Hotel website.
Photos by Céline Demoux.
Three years in the making, Onsen is a brand-new, Japanese-inspired bathhouse and restaurant in the heart of San Francisco. Designed and built from the ground up by husband and wife duo Sunny Simmons and Caroline Smith, Onsen gives nod to international bathhouse culture while also adding their own unique, community spin.
After purchasing the space, the couple lived in an airstream inside the previous automotive building while they completely revamped the space. As a craft builder, Sunny aimed to keep the original character of the building, while also making it fit for modern day luxuries. All the wood in the building has been carefully collected through time by Sunny himself.
The walls of the treatment rooms and throughout the restaurant are full of carefully curated art by Caroline.
Onsen has a total of six treatment rooms and a communal bathing room, complete with a cold plunge shower installation.
Each room in the bathhouse portion has its own look and feel. The dry sauna features all redwood and is more reminiscent of a traditional sauna room, while another room features graphic black and white tiles. The five head cold shower plunge installation is inspired by steampunk-era fiction.
They also collected bathhouse tickets from around the world to decorate the walls.
In the front of the building, Onsen has an intimate, chef-driven restaurant and tearoom featuring fresh, seasonal cuisine and tea service. Lastly, the owners and creators behind Onsen also believe in giving back to the community. They close for business on Tuesdays, but plan to open it to the neighborhood and community around them to provide services that they wouldn’t otherwise be able to afford.
Photos by Raquel Venancio Marins.
Notebook lovers, rejoice! The Bookblock Editions collection is a series of colorful and fun notebooks by 12 renowned illustrators. From soft watercolor landscapes to graphic geometry to hand sketched animal studies to vector cityscapes, there is a design for everyone. The artists created four unique designs in their own, distinct style and each notebook has a soft cover, and is a great collectable item for stationery lovers. The notebooks are made by combining modern technology and traditional bookbinding methods to create a durable notebook that’s also affordable, and are cased-in by hand to ensure high quality products.
If there were three takeaways from this year’s Los Angeles Auto Show they were: 1. SUVs are back with a vengeance, 2. virtual reality is the new marketing tool of choice for auto manufacturers, and 3. matte grey paint is the unofficial concept car color of 2016/2017. Jaguar also unveiled a showstopper electric SUV, 3D printed auto parts/detailing were on display everywhere, Bentley’s new luxury SUV is as smooth and luxurious as you’d imagine, and I might have found a strong contender for my next car. There weren’t as many outlandish concept vehicles at this year’s show with numerous vehicles already unveiled earlier this year, but the following vehicles left their impression as expressions of design, ergonomics, and future automotive technologies:
Divergent 3D Blade Supercar
The retina-tantalizing paint job stopped plenty of passerbys in mid-stride. Closer inspection revealed a supercar that is built based on 3D printed aluminum parts, one powered by a 700 HP engine capable of slingshotting this vehicle from 0-60 in 2.2 seconds.
I can’t say I really experienced Bentley’s first SUV at its full and intended capabilities; Los Angeles traffic basically negated the Bentayga’s 600 HP, 6.0-liter, twin-turbocharged W12 engine to a staccato of stop and go traffic – albeit a remarkably smooth, quiet, and comfortable evening commute in its back seat. That said, the slow drive gave me an opportunity to carefully inspect the characteristic craftsmanship of a luxury vehicle not so much driven as donned, like a bespoke suit. The interior is graced by so much hand stitching, a Chesterfield couch would be struck with envy. Small details like the round touch capacitive lighting brought unexpected joy as passengers fiddled around. But ultimately this is a vehicle designed to be enjoyed driven, not driven in, with serious off-road capabilities hidden behind its ultra-luxury SUV appearances tested and tuned out in the dunes outside of Dubai. Your best bet catching a Bentaygas out in the wild will be in Dubai, Los Angeles, South Beach, and in tonier parts of China – markets that helped define Bentley’s most popular model.
Acura Precision Concept
The Precision’s muscular downward demon pose and Diamond Pentagon grille were both what first lured me closer. But it was a closer inspection that revealed a dazzling frozen constellation of shattered geometry housed within its Jewel Constellation LED headlights that convinced me this was the show car I wanted most to drive off in. Alas, the Precision is all show, no go – a design study intended as the aesthetic framework for the entirety of Acura’s future vehicles. We found some consolation in the official unveiling of the Acura Precision Concept next door, a futuristic instrument panel and console system demo complementary to the Precision’s concept exterior – an interior representing Acura’s vision of intelligent and adaptive technologies, all controlled from a pair of 12.3-inch LCDs and a console touchpad.
Cadillac reps made it a point to emphasize the Escala’s nine layers of paint, a finish that gave the concept a chameleon-like presence under the bright show lights. The 22-inch wheels, slung-back profile, its blunt nose front, and five-door liftback design further underlined the “flagship model” spirit on display. Even the Cadillac emblem is neutralized into a minimalist badge, with focus redirected to the tasteful execution. But it was the Escala’s light grey fabric against an inlay of walnut that left the greatest impression, an interior that steers away from most of the tropes of automotive interiors and more toward fashionable textures and color combinations. Let’s hope something close to this design exercise becomes reality.
Infiniti QX Sport Inspiration Concept
This was the North American coming out party for Infiniti’s mid-size SUV concept – perhaps a misnomer noting the open intent behind the QX Sport Inspiration is to transition from concept to a production vehicle with many of the styling cues intact. Infiniti’s tri-city collaboration between their Beijing, San Diego, and London design studio’s basically created a tastefully aggressive mid-size SUV that normally would expect from Audi in years past. If any vehicle at the show wore a matte finish best, it was the QX Sport Inspiration.
Mitsubishi eX Concept
The angularity and harsh creased lines are admittedly a love/hate affair, but the bodywork by Michael Bay design was undeniably eye-catching. I also give Mitsubishi points for bucking the trend of sedate and neutral colors, the bright yellow communicating the all-electric, 250-mile range engine inside its next generation skin. They also had the longest line at the show, partially because of the eX Concept, but also thanks to an impressive buffet.
Jaguar I-PACE CONCEPT
Most memorable LA Auto Show unveiling goes to Jaguar, who invited a gaggle of journalists to don HTC Vive headsets to explore the interior, exterior, and inner workings of the manufacturer’s very first electric crossover in virtual reality. While we were all oohing and ahhing blind to the real world, Jaguar secreted the concept to reveal the real thing before our very eyes. Sneaky, but well played. What was even better was inspecting what might be the very first serious Tesla contender at the luxury end, a fighter jet rolling on four giant 23-inch Nighthawk wheels, capable of a 220+ mile range and 0-60 in 4 seconds acceleration. And I think every car moving forward need’s the I-Pace’s full-length panoramic glass roof embedded with LEDs. Wow!
Chevy Colorado ZR2
Maybe you didn’t expect to find a pickup truck in the mix, but Chevy’s sequel to their popular and highly-rated Colorado ZR1 is everything I’m looking for in a mid-size truck, including a very tastefully executed aggressive profile from every angle. The styling is undeniably rugged, but the ZR2’s leaned back posture communicates speed usually seen over in the crossover market, and I couldn’t find any angle as it was spun around for inspection that I found disagreeable. Outfitted with improved dynamic suspension, higher clearance, and 1,100 lbs payload capability, I’m going to have a hard time deciding between a ZR2 and Toyota’s similarly categorized Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro. I’m just disappointed I missed out on the drive-along obstacle course.
Mercedes-AMG GT Roadster
The GT Roadster was memorably the show vehicle I saw the most people taking selfies while sitting behind its wheel. Getting any alone time with this popular car required patience. Considering the GT Roadster will probably fall in the ballpark of $150,000 when available fall next year, it’s no wonder show attendees were prone to fawn and fantasize for a few moments.
Divergent 3D Dagger Motorcycle
Another 3D printed vehicle from Divergent 3D, this time a two-wheeled 3D-printed carbon fiber chassis, one “50% lighter than contemporary motorcycle materials” designed for speed and fuel efficiency. Can you believe this was constructed just a day before the show?
Suburu VIZIV-7 SUV Concept
Nevermind the name – short for “Vision for Innovation” – the VIVIZ-7 is a big deal for an automotive brand that has defined and (re)captured a new generation of drivers by mostly ignoring the SUV trend for a stable of beloved crossovers. The three-row seven seater from Subaru will be the brand’s biggest vehicle ever in dimensions, with yet-to-be-determined reception for the manufacturer’s legion of Forester, Outback, and WRX loyalists, but the large crowds at the show bode well.
Porsche 911 RSR
What’s better than a Porsche 911? Very little, to be honest. Porsche rarely fiddles with the evolution of its most iconic model. But this racecar designed to endure the 24 Hours of Le Mans houses some newsworthy news that may shock Porsche loyalists: the 2017 RSR moves from a rear-engine over to a mid-engine design, with a carbon fiber exterior attached to the chassis by latches. The combination of lightweight aerodynamic design and 510 hp delivery is counter-balanced with radar-supported warning system designed to help avoid accidents, something quite useful in a car intended to compete at teeth-clenching speeds.
Toyota C-HR Concept
The C-HR – Coupe High-Rider if you want to get specific – looks like a beefier Toyota Mirai from some angles with a splash of Land Rover Discovery thrown in if you squint. Toyota is calls the exterior design language a “distinctive diamond” and there is indeed a bevy of sharp angles defining the profile of this compact crossover.
Volvo V90 Cross Country
Volvo really knows how to shape metal these days. Their V90 Cross Country’s sleek profile belies how much usable room is available within, and how much ground clearance this category defining sports wagon offers.
The Pink Panthermobile
The most ridiculous, strangest vehicle at the LA Auto Show wasn’t a future-forward concept, but a throwback from the late 1960s – a vehicle designed for the The Pink Panther Show. It really didn’t matter where you stood, every angle presented a wonderfully weird and imaginative view from the front, side, and back. The interior was no less over-the-top, with shag carpeting, a liquor display case, pink telephone, and rabbit ear antenna within inviting a comfortable…ahem…time inside.
Oh my gosh, I have been waiting for this. Notebooks from Society6!!! Now, you can take notes, create to-do lists, write poems, doodle, or whatever you do in a notebook, and be inspired by and support an artist. The notebooks are available lined or unlined. SO EXCITED!!! PLUS 20% Off + Free Shipping on Everything through 11/28 so grab a shopping cart full of stuff this weekend. Here are some of our favorite notebooks (we want them all!):
In an ongoing effort to support independent artists from around the world, Design Milk is proud to partner with Society6 to offer The Design Milk Dairy, a special collection of Society6 artists’ work curated by Design Milk and our readers. Proceeds from the The Design Milk Dairy help us bring Design Milk to you every day.
Not everyone gets around to buying art for themselves as many of us are focused on the necessities. But surrounding yourself with art, with various patterns, textures, colors, etc., can easily bring you joy and happiness, which most definitely is pretty necessary in these times. We looked around and found some great works of art, at varying price points, that anyone would love to own.
Gabriel Stromberg Study Print \\\ $60
A limited edition silkscreen print with simple black line patterns on a pale pink background.
Concrete and Glass, Midtown East (NYC) Print by Amy Park \\\ $150-$575
Amy Park’s incredible watercolor paintings of iconic architecture are breathtaking and full of detail and come in affordable prints, like this one.
“Pink Pop, 2016” by Jeffrey Cutaiar \\\ $1950
An original abstract piece in shades of pink, black, and white acrylic paint and marker.
Joshuas Print by Max Wanger \\\ $150
A peek at the tops of desert plants giving you just enough to let your mind go there and imagine the rest of the image.
Kalypto Print by Eskayel \\\ $45-$90
A dreamy watercolor print of one of Shanan Campanaro’s signature watercolor paintings in a soothing color palette.
Rainbow Mirror by Bride & Wolfe \\\ $85
A playful mini rainbow sculpture with a hint of 70s and 80s pop culture.
Print Disturbed Circles by One Must Dash \\\ $74
A simple, graphic print of double circles where one becomes interrupted, or “disturbed”.
Moon and Back – Silver by Studio January \\\ $50
A subtle, silvery screen printed image of the moon that was shot at Yellowstone National Park.
Block Shop x Capsule Mosaic Indigo Textile \\\ $120
A collaboration that led to this custom-made textile that would look beautiful as a wall hanging or on a table.
Bottle Vase by The Granite \\\ $76
Choose between two different painted patterns for this simple vase that looks beautiful full of flowers or without.
Iconic manufacturer Herman Miller has decided to take a step in a whole new direction – they’ve opened a flagship, direct to consumer store in New York City. The retail shop spans 6,000 square feet on the ground and second floors of Herman Miller’s Manhattan offices at Park Avenue South, which is pretty exciting since it’s the first retail brick and mortar store since their Textiles & Objects shop shuttered in 1967.
Its design feels like a modern home, a home where everything is for sale, from the large furniture to the tiniest object. Each of the rooms in the store offer design ideas and problem-solving designs for living, working, dining, socializing, and sleeping. Paired with the current and vintage Herman Miller roster are a curated selection of design objects from around the world.
As always, you can shop their online store if you can’t make it in person to the new NYC store.
Photos by Nicholas Calcott.
We’re in full swing getting ready for December events here at Pinch. And as we are creating new experiences for our clients, we can’t help but think of holiday parties of yesteryear, like when Dan Aykroyd dressed as Santa in Trading Places, smuggles a whole smoked salmon behind a giant ice sculpture and an obscene display of shrimp and cocktail sauce. How far we’ve come! This month we are exploring ice.
Ice as a medium is such an anomaly. It’s hard and heavy, yet fragile and temporary.
We have dabbled in some creative designs using ice on our own. But ultimately we prefer collaborating with our favorite ice masters at Okamoto Studio in New York.
Here are some examples of their work that goes beyond a caviar bar.
Or here is a stunning piece by Scott Grove from Rochester New York. This surprisingly intricate work of ice-art is formed into a giant knot. Alas, when spring arrives, the minimalist sculptures will melt away, hopefully along with any lingering seasonal melancholy.
Then there is ice-art for awareness, like this artwork by Olafur Eliasson and Minik Rosing addressing climate change. Last December at the Place du Pantheon in Paris, twelve immense blocks of ice from a fjord outside Nuuk, Greenland were arranged in a clock formation during the COP21.
Photo courtesy Birmingham Mail
Or the Melting Men exhibit by Brazilian artist Nele Azevedo in Berlin. This amazing installation of 1,000 melting figures was done in collaboration with the WWF to highlight global warming and bring awareness on the rapid loss of ice worldwide.
Anita Thompson says she has ‘found a legal method’ to extract DNA from six of the gonzo journalist’s personal strains of marijuana
Fans of gonzo journalist Hunter S Thompson may one day get to smoke his own brand of marijuana, thanks to the efforts of his widow, Anita Thompson.
Anita told the Aspen Times that she has six strains of her late husband’s preferred marijuana saved and is working with a cannabis company to grow them for public sale.Continue reading...
Congress set to review bills to authorize intelligence body to oppose Russian interference and propaganda, which could be at odds with Trump administration
A provision in intelligence legislation that is going through Congress would create a new high-level body aimed at thwarting covert Russian political interference around the world, potentially placing it at odds with the incoming Donald Trump administration.
The measure, tucked into the fiscal 2017 House and Senate bills authorizing US intelligence operations, would create a powerful new committee across the security services to oppose Russian destabilization measures and propaganda domestically and worldwide.
I don’t expect most “repeal and replace” advocates are arguing in good faith about the health care system, but in case they are, just a reminder — much as detractors like to complain endlessly about Obamacare, we had big problems that led to its passage in the first place. This post from November 2006:
Fort Wayne Libertarian Mike Sylvester has a good post on the healthcare crisis. Some of his stats:
Healthcare costs are rising 8 – 10% per year and are projected to rise at that rate through 2010.
For 2005 the cost of a comprehensive healthcare plan was $11,480 for a family of 4 for one year.
. . .
The United States currently spends 16% of the entire National GDP on healthcare. This will grow to 20% by 2015. The United States spends the HIGHEST percentage of GDP in the world on healthcare. 2nd and 3rd are Germany and Switzerland at 11% of GDP. In relative terms, we spend 1.5 times as much as the next most expensive country per capita on healthcare. Also please remember that EVERYONE in Germany and Switzerland have free healthcare of some sort.
In the U.S. we spend more and get less than just about anyone in terms of healthcare. We have all the bureaucracy of a government system without the equity that usually comes along with it.
Some links to past healthcare entries in this blog:
Vandalism at St. David’s Episcopal Church in Bean Blossom, Indiana included “Heil Trump,” a swastika, and “Fag Church.”
James Duffy, writing for the Fort Wayne Journal Gazette, has an article on the increase in abuse directed at Latinos, blacks, and Muslims in Fort Wayne, and an increase in anxiety felt by members of those groups.
Fort Wayne has seen incidents. The day of the rally, a garage on the city’s northeast side was spray-painted with the word “Trump,” and the house was later shot at.
. . .
Guillermo “Memo” Contreras, a deejay on Fort Wayne’s Spanish-language radio station La Unica 102.3 FM, said he receives at least seven phone calls a day now from parents whose children ask to be picked up from school because they are being bullied over Trump’s promise to build a wall along the southern border of the U.S. and Mexico.
Contreras, whose radio program runs 7 a.m. to 11 a.m., said he rarely received such phone calls from listeners before the election. One parent told him her child was told by a teacher not to speak Spanish.
. . .
The attacks the Muslim population is seeing are “a bit more verbal than anything else,” said Michael Spath, executive director at the Indiana Center for Middle East Peace in Fort Wayne. “Intimidation. (Comments such as) ‘you’re not wanted here’ and vulgar language are being used.”
. . .
Attending the forum was John Houser, principal of Wayne High School, whose student-athletes were subjected to an incident at a Nov. 8 girls basketball game at Norwell High School.
A cheering section started chanting “Build That Wall,” said Superintendent Scott Mills of Northern Wells Community Schools. The action was immediately stopped by high school principal Mark Misch, he said.
Fort Wayne is not the only Indiana area experiencing such things. For example, in Bean Blossom a church was vandalized with spray paint saying “Heil Trump,” “Fag Church,” and a swastika. In Tell City, the pool was vandalized with a swastika and “Trump”.
August 7, 1930 in Marion, Indiana. A white mob murders Thomas Shipp and Abram Smith. A man in the crowd poses for a picture.
It doesn’t take a lot of this kind of thing to make a members of a non-majority group feel extremely uneasy. And that’s not just them being delicate or fragile. We really aren’t that far historically from a time when white men felt comfortable having their pictures taken at a lynching.
What’s going on with all of this? Is it a new trend, a precursor to more frequent and more violent events to come? Is it just a few bad apples, being sensationalized by media outlets (mine included)? Are minority groups panicking more than the events warrant?
I couldn’t say. Growing up, I — and I think probably most Americans — were indoctrinated with the tale of Nazi Germany as a cautionary tale. It’s been overdone for sure. Mike Godwin was getting at that when he invented Godwin’s Law. Every Internet discussion thread devolved into Nazi comparisons. That said, when a political leader stokes ethnic resentment for political power, it’s tough not to draw comparisons. On the other hand, the United States in the late 2010s is not in the same dire economic state as 1930s Germany, nor are we suffering from postwar humiliation. So, the hope would be that we are not as vulnerable.
Similarly, I have no real ability to judge the reaction of minority groups who feel threatened by these incidents. I’m an upper middle class white professional in a community that is relatively diverse and prosperous. West Lafayette has a diverse nonwhite population, but because of the presence of Purdue, many members of that population are of a professional class. We talk of race and wealth in our politics, but we very often do not discuss social class as a thing distinct from those factors. And I think that creates something of a blind spot in our political discussions.
What should we do about this? Again, I’m not full of answers. Specific instances should, where criminal, be investigated and prosecuted. Noncriminal acts should, at a minimum, trigger social disapproval. Beyond that, Trump supporters of good will should avoid the temptation to perceive discussion of these issues as a personal attack and reflexively dismiss them as unimportant.
For my part, I think I need to do a better job of respecting the feelings of those who feel attacked and marginalized in a lot of ways – whether it’s the black man who fears the police, the woman who fears sexual assault, American who fears terrorist attacks, the gun owner who fears crime, the Christian or Muslim who fears the loss of religious freedoms, or whatever it might be. It’s easy for me to sit back and philosophically note that the statistics don’t necessarily support the level of fear. The fear is, nevertheless, very real to the person experiencing it. The question is what can I (and what can we) do to reduce this pervasive anxiety. Compassion for the person experiencing the anxiety is one reason to address it. But the larger reason is that the anxiety is corroding our social institutions and our relationships to one another.
There was a time when it was in vogue to cover your sofas in plastic, keep the formal dining room spotless, and strive for perfectly-visible vacuum lines. It was the age of tupperware and pastels, when keeping things preserved was obviously the way to go. Times are changing, though. We are seeing more and more homes built to be truly lived in. No rooms are off limits, decorations are less precious and kids are more free to be creative and (dare I say it) mess things up a little.
There’s such freedom and joyfulness that comes with this feeling of letting go. And that’s exactly what Katie Sarokhanian of Rus in Urbe Home and her husband Nicholas strive to infuse into the Dallas, TX home where they’re raising their three daughters. By setting a certain tone with the decorations they bring home, Katie and Nicholas let the kiddos know that messing up a little something there or getting something dirty here isn’t a big deal. Instead of being focused on how they’re making a mess, they want their daughters to focus on things that bring them joy. In order to keep themselves from stressing when stuff gets broken or blemished, they eagerly pick through vintage shops and browse Craigslist listings. Not only is it fun, but since these thrifty finds don’t break the bank, their wear and tear is much easier to take. “My most important goal is to never be attached to any thing in my home. I want my friends’ kids to run around and have fun. I like having the house full of people, and I never ever care when wine is spilled or things are broken,” Katie tells us.
Just because these affordable finds aren’t shiny and new doesn’t mean Katie and Nicholas have sacrificed their personal style. On the contrary, their collection of pillows and textiles seems right out of a bohemian dream. Rich red blankets, patterned pillows and an eclectic mixture of layered textiles help guests and the family alike feel at home from the second they walk in the door. Click through to see just how well the couple has managed to craft a pretty home that isn’t afraid to get a little dirty. Enjoy! —Garrett
Photography by Kris Ellis
Claire and Parker Brody’s 900-square-foot rental home in downtown Austin, TX is filled with natural light and unique color combinations. Each room has an unexpected flavor that highlights their love of vintage furniture and crafting inviting spaces. Claire likes to experiment by choosing playful palettes and styling elements like paint, light fixtures and window treatments to create personality, while staying within the parameters of their rental agreement. The living room feels cozy with an eggplant colored bookcase, neutral walls and blue curtains that are balanced with warm furniture and décor, whereas the guest bedroom pulls from a range of greens and embraces comfortable textures. The dining room walls are painted a soft green complemented perfectly by luscious reds and sophisticated accessories. Check out more of Claire and Parker’s colorful space in their original home tour. —Bethany
Palette 1 – Living Room
A. Igloo Blue (Behr), PMS 552; B. Velvet Beret (Valspar), PMS 668; C. Desert Clay (Behr), PMS 4635; D. Tricycle Red (Benjamin Moore), PMS 186; E. Dove White (Valspar), PMS Warm Gray 1
Roundup 1 – Living Room
1. Vintage Hollywood Regency Floor Lamp, $285; 2. Nina Charme Tan Armchair, $999; 3. Red Pocket-Sized Encyclopedias, $299; 4. Black Wool Rug, $195.19; 5. Brass Duck Bookends, $28; 6. South Seas Bar Cart, $498; 7. Vogue Cover Print, $57
The second and third room images and product roundups continue after the jump!
Palette 2 – Guest Bedroom
A. Du Jour (Valspar), PMS Cool Gray 1; B. Sun Valley (Behr), PMS 371 ; C. Glitzy Gold (Sherwin Williams), PMS 1245; D. Eccentric Lime (Benjamin Moore), PMS 397 ; E. Purple Earth (Valspar), PMS 438
Roundup 2 – Guest Bedroom
1. Kensie Home Madison Velvet Pair of Panels, $108; 2. Yellow Roses by Redoute Poster, $9; 3. Cloudnola Trusty Gold Alarm Clock, $29.99; 4. Green Velvet Feather and Down Filled Throw Pillows, $35.99; 5. Luxe Velvet Lumbar Pillow Cover, $39; 6. Franklin Lamp Base, $26.59; 7. Velvet Cushion Cover, $9.99; 8. Blue Green Pillow Cover, $22; 9. Duval Burnished Antique Gold Frames, $29.95; 10. Seychelles Dove White Quilt, $339; 11. Slub Velvet Orianna Headboard, $1,648
Palette 3 – Dining Room
A. Breakfast Room Green (Farrow & Ball), PMS 5565; B. Million Dollar Red (Benjamin Moore), PMS 1805; C. Royal Garnet (Valspar), PMS 4975; D. Lunar Surface (Behr), PMS Cool Gray 5; E. Autumn Surprise (Valspar), PMS 463
Roundup 3 – Dining Room
1. Four White Roses Dark 36″ x 32.65″ Framed Print, $332.85; 2. Milo Baughman 1188 Dining Chair, $1,550; 3. Seno Table, $799; 4. Darya Rugs Tribal Norene Rug, $3,190; 5. Black Polyresin Vase, $14; 6. Division Street Stardust Pendant, $118
We’ve all faced difficult challenges before. Part of being someone who is actively engaged with their creativity is finding smart solutions to whatever problems come our way. This is especially true when you own your business (full-time or side-hustle) and ultimately have to count on yourself to get through. But sometimes – maybe even right now – you are faced with the kind of challenge that makes you question everything.
Giving up completely isn’t a real option. Shutting down is just delaying the inevitable. Feeling helpless is valid, until you need to get your s*** together again. Life moves forward whether you’re ready or not, so it’s our job to keep moving too. It won’t happen overnight, but change will come. Here’s my best advice on how to keep going so you’ll still be here when it does. –Adam J. Kurtz
Adam J. Kurtz (better known as ADAMJK) is an artist and author of 1 Page at a Time & Pick Me Up. His dark (but optimistic) humor comes to life in an offbeat line of gifts and small trinkets. Follow him at @ADAMJK or in real life (he lives in Brooklyn because of course he does).
Oh, the comment section.
Years ago we shared how to make homemade peanut butter cups. Which is still one of my very favorite homemade candies to make because it's SO EASY. So I thought I'd try a different version for Friendsgiving since I was planning to make a pie but I still wanted to serve something with chocolate, because, well, chocolate is holiday-worthy!
I changed up the filling for these just a little by adding some pumpkin and spice to the mix, and I absolutely love how they turned out, so I figured I'd share. These are great to just have in your refrigerator if you need a little pick me up, or a fun thing to take to a gathering as they are super easy to transport. Everyone at our Friendsgiving was raving about them. They are a crowd-pleaser for sure. :)
12 oz. dark chocolate chips or chopped dark chocolate
2 teaspoons olive oil
1/4 cup pumpkin puree
3 tablespoons peanut butter
2 tablespoons brown sugar
big pinch of cinnamon
2 teaspoons of coarse sea salt for the tops
16-18 mini muffin liners
In a small bowl, stir together the pumpkin, peanut butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Then prepare your mini muffin pan by adding the liners.
In a microwave safe bowl, melt half of the chocolate chips with the oil. I've found the best way to melt chocolate in the microwave is to melt for 30 seconds, stir, melt another 30 seconds, stir, and repeat this until things are creamy. You can also do this in a double boiler if you don't want to use the microwave. Once the chocolate is melted, pour a tablespoon or so (it's not necessary to measure, I'm just giving you an idea of how much to pour) in to each cupcake liner. Give the pan a little shake so that the chocolate evenly distributes, then add a heaping teaspoon or so (again, no need to measure the exact amount here) of the pumpkin mixture. Then top with a little more chocolate so the pumpkin mixture is fully covered. And last sprinkle on the sea salt.
Credits // Author: Emma Chapman.Photography: Amber Ulmer and Emma Chapman. Photos edited with the NEW A Beautiful Mess actions.
And there it is.