Andrea Aranow

By Tom Ran

Published: April 15, 2014 under Textile

A sampling of Andrea Aranow's collection of textiles

Photo: Ace Hotel

Andrea Aranow is a collector and a scholar of textiles. She has turned her passion of woven fabrics into a career that spans five decades. Traveling the world over, Aranow’s research has exposed her to many indigenous cultures from the remote areas of China and mountainous regions in Peru to Afghanistan and Mexico. Her collection and knowledge has caught the attention of the British Museum where they purchased a significant part of her collection early on. As much as she is involved in academia, Aranow’s work has also attracted musicians like Jimi Hendrix and Miles Davis where she’s designed and made clothes for them.

Though she is active in showing her collection publicly, there is still a lot more in her archive that has not been seen. Along with her son Caleb Sayan, Aranow is currently digitizing her collection for future purpose. Inventory has an interview with her in the latest issue and a selection of her American Quilts are now on view at Nepenthes.

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Billykirk Book

By Tom Ran

Published: April 14, 2014 under Publishing

A well-worn Billykirk belt

Photo: Tatsuro Nishimura for Billykirk

It’s been five years since we first met Chris and Kirk Bray from Billykirk and embarked on our short film series. The brothers were already ten years in to their small business of making hand crafted leather goods. This year they’re celebrating their 15th anniversary by putting together a book featuring well-wormed items from past customers. Belts, wallets, bags, everything under the Billykirk sun will be included. They’re currently taking submissions. Just send a photo of your item to If chosen, your item will be photographed and published in the book along with your name and story. All participants will get a signed copy of the book from Chris and Kirk.

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Piet Oudolf

By Tom Ran

Published: April 11, 2014 under Film

Piet Oudolf: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall

Photo: Thomas Piper

Over the past several years a new found interest in gardening has emerged as witnessed by numerous publications launches in print and digital. This includes The Plant, Wilder, and Plant Hunter from Australia. Maybe it’s an extension from popular topics like food, urban farming and to a certain extent lifestyle and interiors that has created these new perspectives. A new documentary on a Dutch garden designer is about to reinforce this interest. Piet Oudolf’s name may not sound familiar but his work has been seen by the millions of people. Oudolf is responsible for designing the landscapes for the High Line, Battery Park, a green roof at Millennium Park in Chicago, and many other public and private gardens around the world. The documentary Piet Oudolf: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall will visit Oudolf’s most important gardens over five seasons. It’s a study in the creative process behind Oudolf’s work as an art form but also a look at his theory in biodiversity and ecology in gardening. The film will see its release mid 2015.

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The Hilda Stories for Herman Miller

By Tom Ran

Published: April 10, 2014 under Design

The team behind Geoge Nelson & Associates

Photo: Damien Florébert Cuypers for Herman Miller

To hear stories from the people that worked alongside Mid-Century American design giants is to witness an important time in American design history. Whether the stories be profound or anecdotal, it’s a glimmer of insight into an era that so many put in high regard. Hilda Longinotti, was a receptionist for George Nelson and Associates for 21 years. She shares a few of her memories with us through Herman Miller’s Why blog. Longinotti’s perspective as a member of the team gives us insight into some amusing stories including original Warhols created for a campaign that went missing. “The Hilda Stories,” is animated by Damien Florébert Cuypers and produced by Hello Design.

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Alexander Girard and Vitra

By Tom Ran

Published: April 9, 2014 under Home

Environmental Enrichment Panel, Hand and Dove

Photo: Vitra

The revival of Alexander Girard’s past designs continues from Vitra this week. In partnership with the Girard Foundation Vitra will reissue more archived prints for the home and office. This includes pillows, wool blankets and the obscure Environmental Enrichment Panels. To enhance the drab office environment that was beginning to proliferate corporations in the 1970s, Girard designed a series of colorful graphic panels meant to be inserted into the dull partitions. It’s unclear how successful these were but the whimsical nature of these graphics seemed too far fetched for corporate offices to embrace. Nonetheless the panels became highly sought after in the years following and have only been available on secondary markets. Vitra’s re-edition will bring new life into these designs. The panels are silkscreened onto linen and are individually mounted on fiberboard spacer frames perfect for the office or home. Culling from the archive, a collection of pillows will also be reissued from Vitra.

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Collective Quarterly at Modern Anthology

By Tom Ran

Published: April 8, 2014 under Publishing

The Collective Quarterly launch at Modern Anthology.

Photo: Collective Quarterly

Nearly a year after we mentioned the Collective Quarterly on The Scout, we’re finally going to see the fruits of their labor. On the heels of their Chicago launch, they’re bringing the celebration to Brooklyn. Modern Anthology in Dumbo, will be hosting an event this Thursday evening to commemorate the release. They will be giving away a copy of issue 0, a Faribault Woolen Mills travel blanket in collaborating with Collective Quarterly, a framed print from the issue, and much more. Meet the team behind the publication and see many of the photographs up close. The event will be from 6-9 in their Dumbo storefront at 68 Jay Street, Brooklyn, NY. RSVP at

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Alya Kazakevich

By Raven Keller
Alya Kazakevich in her shop in the Lower East Side

Photo: Rose Callahan

On a damp and muggy summer morning on the Lower East Side, Alya Kazakevich slowly stitched up the edges of a leather coin purse and recalled her childhood in Eastern…

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By Tom Ran
Partners Robert Highsmith and Stefanie Brechbuehler

Photo: Samuel Bristow

Stefanie Brechbuehler and Robert Highsmith, are the partners behind Workstead. The two met at Rhode Island School of Design while studying architecture and opened their studio in 2009,…

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M.Nii John Moore

By Tom Ran
M.Nii Tailor, Waianae, Hawaii 1959

Photo: Tom McBride

The photo is one of the few relics that remain of M.Nii’s history. An image that recalls the golden age of American surf culture. Three friends in front…

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