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    Portlandia: a guide for visitors[http://www.urbanoutfitters.com/urban/catalog/productdetail.jsp?id=26384917&parentid=A_ENT_BOOKS_BOOK]

    Need new reads for this summer? No problemo. This roundup will show you 5 interesting books that will make you smarter, manlier, and more creative.

    1. Portlandia: A Guide For Visitors

    If you're a fan of the show, you probably know that if you're heading to the West Coast to visit good ol' Portland, you NEED this guide. If you haven't seen this hilarious series you should get anyways, as this is a comprehensive guide from "two of its most famous residents". Also, watch the show. It's on Netflix.

     

    Manskills [http://www.urbanoutfitters.com/urban/catalog/productdetail.jsp?id=26291716&parentid=A_ENT_BOOKS_BOOK]

    2. Manskills

    This is the essential guide to being an awesome guy. It tons of tips that will leave the rest of the world wondering if one day they'll be as cool as you are. Grooming, car repair, manners - learn it all and get ready to attack with your new found arsenal of manliness.

     

    The Art of Non-Comformity [http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0399536108/ref=as_li_tf_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=0399536108&linkCode=as2&tag=holidmatin-20]

    3. The Art of Non-Comformity

    If you've been bitten by the "is this it? Is this life?" bug, then you should read this book. In the Art of Non-Conformity, author Chris Guillebeau uses his own life story to inspire others to take steps towards living the life they've always dreamed of. Make this summer the summer of life changes!

     

    Dinner Journal [http://dinerjournal.com/]

    4. Diner Journal

    This quarterly magazine is perfect for those looking for a publication that covers art, literature, and recipes without the fuzz of having to browse through ads and unrealistic dinner parties. Diner Journal has also several how-to's that will make you a pro in the kitchen, plus other great stories that can be enjoyed while waiting for your pot roast to be ready.

     

    How to Stay Alive in the Woods [http://www.amazon.com/How-Stay-Alive-Woods-Self-Preservation/dp/1579122213]

    5. How to Stay Alive in the Woods

    Whether you are going to New York or the jungle, this book will come in handy! Especially if you're venturing in unknown territory. Even if you're not heading to the woods to do some hardcore, extreme camping, you should learn a few tricks to stay alive - 'cause you know, that's always a good thing. This easy read has all the essentials, including expanded instructions and illustrations.


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    Photography by Todd McLellan [http://www.toddmclellan.com/]

    As a Manmade reader, I know how much you love to learn about how things work, so I'm certain sure you'll love this series by Todd McLellan.

    created at: 06/11/2013 

    "Things come apart" is the continuation the Canadian photographer's "Disassembly" series. Here, he dismantled - down to the core - everyday objects and arranged them in an artful way that looks nothing like the original artifact. It's almost as if he was dissecting non-living creatures.

    The arrangement of every single piece, along with the mood and lighting in each photograph, transform these mundane objects into amazing pieces of art. Just think about it, when was the last time a smashed iPod made you go "whoa!"

    Photography by Todd McLellan [http://www.toddmclellan.com/]

    If you are already hooked on "Things Come Apart," then you should grab the book which is full wonderful images.

    Explore the rest of Todd McLlellan's work on his web site here... you won't be disappointed. Make sure you spend some time to see his series "Pinhole Paris." 

     

     

     

     

     


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    created at: 06/11/2013

    So...if you're anything like me, you'll often see cool items in stores, you'll say to yourself, "I could totally make that." Which I do, all the time, and nine times out of ten, I'm totally wrong.  But when I saw a set of concrete coasters in a cool little boutique, I knew it was worth a try. So, I gave it a shot. And? it was beyond easy to do.  Here's how:   

    created at: 06/11/2013

    Tools and Materials

    • rapid set concrete (you can get a whole box at a home improvement store for like $10)
    • plastic cups – one for each coaster and a couple for mixing
    • Coarse and fine sandpaper
    • a utility knife (I ended up not needing it, but I thought I might need to cut the cups off the coasters)
    • presto felt (it's felt with an adhesive backing. you could also use felt and craft glue, but presto is WAY easier)

    Here's What You Do:

    created at: 06/11/2013

    1. Mix your concrete in one of your cups. You want to use four parts concrete to 1 part water. The cool thing about this stuff is that you don't have to be exact.  You want the concrete to be like melted peanut butter.... It should pour from your mixing cup easily! 



    created at: 06/11/2013

    2. Fill each of the cups with about 1/4" of concrete, or however thick you'd like your coasters. Tap the bottoms of each cup against your work surface to help them level and get rid of any bubbles. I chose to make six coasters (hoping four would turn out well). Allow to dry for 60–90 minutes.

     

     

    created at: 06/11/2013

    3. After your coasters are dry, turn each of the cups over and give them a good whack against your work surface. It wouldn't hurt to put a towel down first, just to be safe.

     

    created at: 06/11/2013

    4. Let your coasters dry for another 30 minutes. After that, clean up the edges and any other imperfections with sandpaper. Use a damp cloth to clean any concrete dust off of the coaster. Let dry overnight.

    created at: 06/11/2013

    5. The next day, traces circles on the bottom of the presto felt to fit the bottom side of my coasters. Surprisingly, all six of mine turned out well, so I cut felt to finish all of them. I was able to use the little raised area from the cup as divot into which I could place the felt. Peel off the felt backing and apply to the bottoms of your coaster. Make sure you rub the felt onto the coaster really well. 

    created at: 06/11/2013

    And...you're done. Next time I try this, I'll make my coasters just a little thinner for a more sleek look. But, the technique is super easy, and they're quite durable, and will last me for a-many cocktail to come.

    Cheers!


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  • 06/12/13--02:00: Smoke: New Firewood Cooking
  • created at: 06/12/2013

    For centuries, burning wood and tinder were basically the only means of cooking food (and heating one's home, and boiling water, and all sorts of other stuff.) The wood served as fuel, generating heat, thereby turning raw ingredients into completed dishes. These days, we have much more efficient and controllable ways to create heat for food, but these conveniences come with a downside: they don't taste as good.

    Smoke: New Firewood Cooking by award winning chef Tim Byres seeks to explore the unique properties of cooking with an open fire, whether in the grill, in your kitchen, or over smoldering embers. Tim "shows how to imbue all kinds of foods—not just meat—with the irresistible flavor of smoke. Here he gives innovative ideas for easy ways to use smoke in your everyday kitchen arsenal of flavors—such as smoking safely on the stovetop with woodchips, putting together relishes and salsas made with smoked peppers and other vegetables, grilling with wood planks, and using smoke-cured meats to add layers of flavor to a dish. For serious cooks, there are how-to sections on building a firepit, smokehouse, and spit roast at home." 

    On my wishlist, for sure. Smoke: New Firewood Cooking - How to Build Flavor with Fire on the Grill and in the Kitchen [Photo via: Uncrate]


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    Postfossil Bike Rack [http://www.postfossil.ch/en/products/17/]

    Those who live in small places or without a dedicated mud room or home landing pad can attest: it's hard to keep those things you take in and out of the house everyday organized. Especially if one of them is a bicycle.    

    This wooden shelf designed by Postfossil is an inspired solution It features different compartments to place your favorite and heavy use items, such as books and shoes, and more importantly, it has a specially designed shelf to place your beautiful bike.

    And it's easily make-able at home, and you'd only need a few things: wood and a crosscut saw, screws, glue, and maybe some paint? Nothing out of the ordinary for a ManMadeDIY reader. You could customize the design and add extra compartments with hooks to hold your keys, backpack, and helmet.

    If you want to avoid the whole hassle of having to make one from scratch, then order one directly from Postfossil.

    Shelf for Shoes, Books, and Bike [Via: PPinka]

     


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    Each Wednesday, I post some of my favorite can't-miss links, images, and otherwise mindblowing goodies from across the web. 


    Inside the archives of the John F. Kennedy Library in Boston, includes this interesting sheet of paper: a personal recipe for JFK's favorite dish:    created at: 06/12/2013 See more at A Continuous Lean

    Creative Instructable-r Mikeasaurus came up with this clever toy hack: a pepper grinder gun, noises and lights and everything. Get the full how-to here.  

     

    This dapper looking dog has had a unique mustache pattern on his snout his whole life. Check out Damn Cool Pics for more images...including some mustachioed puppy shots. 

     

    Kenji from the Food Lab shows you how to cook a steak...in a cooler:

     

    created at: 06/12/2013

    How to: Make a DIY Shrinky Dink Tie Tack

     


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    The Worknest Modular Desk [http://www.behance.net/gallery/WORKNEST/9025739]

    A desk that lets you configure your workspace according to your work style and needs? I’ll take it!   

    Polish industrial designer Wiktoria Lenart is an ace at designing something that all of us - cubicle refugees - can dream of: a desk that’s completely adaptable to your space and habits.

    The worknest features different attachable segments that combined create one mighty idea-making station. Want to add a shelf for your headphones? No problem. Want some plants? You got it. Even some baskets for all of your pens? You bet! Watch the video below to see it for yourself (and turn the volume up ‘cause there’s some funky music playing):

    Amazing, yes? You can continue to daydream about the perfect workspace over at Wiktoria Lenart's Behance page. Make sure to browse through her portfolio, she has lots of goodies!

     


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    French designers and paper artists Zim and Zou (Lucie Thomas and Thibault Zimmermann) handcrafted this amazing paper featuring all kinds of grilled goodies and outdoor dining accoutrement for "Factum's barbecue 2013." (I tried to search and figure out what that meant...but didn't get very far. Perhaps Factum is a magazine or publication of sorts?)

    I love the details here: the kabab skewers head-on shrimp,  the grill marks on the sausage....and its that oxtail on the left?

    See more at Zim and Zou's portfolio site[via Fubiz.net]


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    How to infuse your own spirits

    Studies have shown that a well-stocked liquor cabinet increases the chance of feeling awesome (studies conducted by ourselves over the weekend). This includes having several custom, home-infused spirits: one bottle suddenly has multiple options and flavor profiles.

    And? It's craaaaazy easy. The results produce a subtle, aromatic, next-level cocktail or highball. No perfume-y, candy martinis here: just straight, clean and fresh deliciousness.

    How to infuse spirits

     

    TOOLS AND INGREDIENTS:

    1. Spirit of your choice: we recommend starting with vodka, as it's tasteless and can be infused with any ingredient. Other great choices include gin, white rum, and brandy.
    2. Infusing aromatics: these are the ingredients used for flavoring. Common ingredients include: citrus peel, juniper berries, pink peppercorns, cinnamon, etc.
    3. Clean glass container: avoid using metal or plastic as this can alter the flavor or even cause a nasty chemical reaction that will leave your spirit tasting like pennies. You can use the bottle your liquor came in, a mason jar, etc...
    4. Fine mesh strainer: use it to strain the final product. This will help you catch any bits that fell apart during the process.

    How to infuse spirits

     

    STEPS:

    • CLEAN. Wash the glass container and give a final rinse with hot boiling water. This will eliminate any contaminants, oils, or sticky stuff.
    • CRUSH. Give your ingredientes a good pounding... You can crush them by hand, a mallet, a heavy skillet, mortar and pestle, or a rolling pin - just make sure they're coarse. You don't want tiny pieces floating around your booze. NOTE: When using delicate ingredients like herbs or vanilla, don't crush, just use as is.
    • MIX. Pour the spirit in a clean glass container and add flavoring ingredients. Close with a tight lid. Give it a gentle shake.
    • INFUSE. let the mix sit at room temperature (away from the sun) for about 1 week, then take a little sample and taste it. If needed, add a few extra days. In average, 2 weeks should yield the best results. NOTE: an exception must be made with extremely spicy/fragrant ingredients like peppercorns and chilies. For all of these, test after 4 days.
    • STRAIN. once ready, strain infused spirit through a fine mesh and store in a clean glass container with a lid. Refrigerate to keep it fresh.

    That's it! You can serve the infused liquor straight on the rocks or you can use it as a base for tasty cocktails. Want a few recipes to get you infusing? Here are 3 that are perfect for the summer:

    1: Habanero-infused Tequila

    Ingredients:

    • Tequila añejo or reposado
    • 1 habanero chile split in half

    Follow steps above (infuse for 3 days max or you'll need to call the fire department). Can be sipped on it's own or mixed in a margarita.

    2: Rosemary Bourbon

    Ingredients:

    • Bourbon
    • Fresh rosemary sprigs

    Mix ingredients and let it sit for about a week. This delicious infusion is great when used in a mint julep or a fresh whiskey sour. Best served chilled on the rocks (highly recommend using these whiskey stones).

    3. Vanilla Coffee Vodka

    Ingredients:

    • 1 Vanilla pod split in half
    • 1/4 cup of coffee beans
    • Vodka

    Mix all ingredients, let it sit for 2 weeks. This combination tastes similar to Van Gogh espresso vodka, but it's way more affordable. Enjoy it on martinis and white russians.

    Now that you know how to infuse spirits, go get that liquor cabinet ready for all of your summer affairs and let us know if you come up with a recipe of your own.

    Cheers!

     


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    created at: 06/13/2013
    In our Outfitted series, we hand-pick the style items and practical accessories you need to look your best.

    When man invented the bicycle he reached the peak of his attainments. Here was a machine of precision and balance for the convenience of man. And (unlike subsequent inventions for man's convenience) the more he used it, the fitter his body became. Here, for once, was a product of man's brain that was entirely beneficial to those who used it, and of no harm or irritation to others. Progress should have stopped when man invented the bicycle. - Elizabeth Howard West

    Ms. West's quote sums up our feeling about bicycles perfectly. As a kid, bikes meant freedom, and there's no reason that should change as an adult. They get you from place to place, while providing a great, low-impact form of exercise, and ... they're fun.

    We teamed up with Public Bikes, a San Francisco-based company that focuses on design, and emphasizes the look of the bike in addition to the ride and the feel. 

    created at: 06/13/2013

    To celebrate their first sixteen-speed road bike, the Public R16, we created an Outfitted post in which we curate the right men's style items and accessories for different bike scenarios. ManMade founder and editor Chris took the daily commute to work, and our contributor Gabriel opted for a casual Saturday ride in the city. All of our picks were influenced by the design of the R16, a stylish road bike modeled after the classic European touring bikes and English club racers. 

    Chris' Scenario - The City Commute 

    Chris says, "Riding a bike to work is all about balance. You need to have movement and comfort during your commute, but not be covered in spandex when you get there. I selected these items for their ride-friendly features, and their classic British-inspired looks to match the design of the R16. Each item works well on the bike, and all day long."

    created at: 06/13/2013

    Jacket: Land's End Madison Wool Bike Blazer - The only sportcoat I know of that was designed specifically for cycling. It has zippered and button pockets, an earbud loop, and a popup collar with reflective tape for those nights home. It's wool, so it'll be warm in the summer...but who bikes in a blazer in the summer anyway? 

    Pants: Levi's 54I Straight Tumbled - Dark enough to dress up for work, and loose enough to not restrict your leg movement without being baggy. If jeans are a no go at your job, a dark grey trouser would work well.

    Sunglasses: Ray-Ban Wayfarer RB2132 Tortoise Shell - The most versatile pair out there. Never not appropriate, they work equally well with a suit or a swimsuit. Black is classic, but the brown works well for most situations. If you shop smart can be found for under $100. 

    Shirt: Banana Republic Slim-Fit Non-Iron - No need to worry about wrinkles from cycling, and sharp enough that you can take off your jacket after lunch. 

    Belt: Gap Leather Stripe - Has a little extra something, and the stripes echo the details from the classic touring bike design of the Public R16. 

    Socks: Fits Business Crew - If I could, I'd wear only wool socks for everything, and Fits whenever possible. Natural wicking keeps your feet dry while you ride, and stays cushy throughout the day. 

    Shoes: Clarks Original Desert Boot - Since the R16 has metal toe clips, I chose something whether the leather wouldn't get scratched and beat up by the pedals: suede. Super comfortable, yet dressy enough. 

     

    created at: 06/13/2013

    Gloves: Gantoli 006 - A European-style touring bike deserves some European-style touring gloves. These Gantoli's are sharper than anything you'll find at the sporting good store, yet the same price. 

    Headphones: Aftershock AS3000 - Uses bone-conduction technology so your ears are still open to listen to the road and traffic, and keep you street legal. The audio isn't amazing, so use these to listen to talk-based podcasts, audiobooks, or the morning news. 

    Mini Pump: Lezyne Carbon Drive Lite - The best way to avoid a flat is to make sure your tires are filled appropriately, especially on city streets. Check your pressure before every ride and fill as needed, especially during warmer months. Not optional, and Lezyne makes the best. Public agrees.

    App: Strava - Uses your phones GPS to monitor your ride - speed, route, elevation, etc - and automatically keeps track of your progress on your account. And? It's free. 

    Bag: Herschel Supply Little America - Cool leather details match those on the Public R16, and Herschel products look great on and off the bike.

    Multi-Tool: Crank Brothers Mulit-5 - Keep one in your backpack or saddle bag to make sure your bike is aligned and set-up just where you want it. 

    Helmet: Nutcase Street Super Solid - Not optional, regardless of your local laws. The matte red here echoes the stylish red cable housing of the R16.

    Bike: Public R16 - Suitable for recreational riding or a quick commute. I love the stock fenders for wet days, and the subtle details like the white-walled brown tires and the leather toe clip straps. 

     

    Gabriel's Scenario - A Saturday in the City

    Gab says, "One of the best things about summer is that you get to spend the weekend exploring the city with friends. Kicking back, biking around the neighborhood, hitting the farmer's market,  having some drinks, and simply enjoying each other's company. This collection is full of items that will definitely make your experience that much more enjoyable, and keep you looking sharp. From the perfect accessories for your bike, to nifty gadgets and stylish picks - we cover all of your exploring needs from AM to PM. And don't forget that it's not the destination that counts, it's the journey...and the gadgets.

    Rather than practicality, I chose my pieces for the streamlined color options. You're not going to work, you're hanging out with your friends and your sweetheart on a Saturday. Enjoy it!"

    created at: 06/13/2013

    T-Shirt: Maxnina Grey Simple Classic 

    Pants: Sureshot Chino Terracotta  

    Cap (to hide helmet hair): Huf Melton Wool Leather Circle H 6 Panel 

    Shoes: Vans Washed Twill Era 59 

    Sweatshirt: Scotch and Soda 

    Pant Cuff: Brooks Leather Trouser Strap 

    Sunglasses: Steven Alan Monroe Light Dew 

    Bike: Public R16 with Slender Rear Rack

    Panniers: Public Farmer's Market Twin  

     

    created at: 06/13/2013Helmet: Bern Watts Matte Grey

    Casual Reading: Instructions for Happiness and Success by Susie Pearl 

    Accessories: Wally Wallet Bottle Opener | Photojojo Bikepod 

    Picnic Blanket: Cross by Pia Wallen

    Insulated Bag:  The Camera Cooler by Poler 

     

    This post was created in partnership with Public Bikes, who provided an R16 for review and inspiration. All opinions mine. 

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     


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    'Tis the season for outdoor dining and backyard grill fest, where there's every reason to take your time, spend the evening outside with the aromas and flavors of summer. Merge Records, one of the most important independent rock and pop record labels, teamed up with retailer West Elm to assemble this great, free playlist full of sunshine-filled tracks from their artists. They say,  "To start the mix, we wanted to find songs that either were specifically about the sun/spring/summer or that conveyed a feeling of those things. As the playlist continues, the weather changes and the rain comes, but it’s not a bad thing – it just changes the mood from a lazy, carefree day to more of a party, which how we thought the day should end."

    I'll be listening this weekend while the coals get nice and hot. Get the full Spotify playlist on West Elm's blog, Front and Main: 

    Summer BBQ Music by Merge Records 

     

     

     


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  • 06/28/13--10:45: Who Made That?
  • created at: 06/28/2013

    This morning, I totally got caught up exploring this stunning interactive article from The New York Times Magazine "Innovations Issue." Entitled "Who Made That?" it's a fascinatinglook at stories and persons behind the objects, devices, and ideas we interact with everyday. 

    created at: 06/28/2013

    I especially love this thought, which closes the introduction: 

    Fortunately, even if big companies are not driving innovation, by and large, they can't stop it either. One take-away of this Who Made That? issue is how few things we most value sprang from corporate labs or marketing departments. Mostly they came from people trying to solve a problem of their own....The ground for this type of practical problem solving is more fertile than ever, says the technology theorist Clay Shirky. In his books "Here Comes Everybody" and "Cognitive Surplus," he presents a convincing case for how technology frees up our time and gives us the tools to use it more creatively and collaboratively. 

    Check it out and click around at NYTimes.com: Who Made That?

     

     


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    The Label Chair by Félix Guyon & La Firme [http://www.behance.net/gallery/CHAISE-ETIQUETTE-LABEL-CHAIR/7315149]

    As ManMade's resident Canadian, I don't want to toot our own horn, but seriously, how awesome is this Label Chair? Vintage inspiration and modern design at its finest.

    When Montreal designers Félix Guyon & La Firme created this chair a couple years ago, they probably knew that vintage furniture would be on everyone's favorite list. This slick, sturdy chair is as beautiful as it is functional - it can be stacked away using very little space (only 1" thick when folded).

    When placed in large events, the design of the label in each chair stands out from any ordinary-looking seats. A few events that would totally rock these chairs: wedding receptions, industrial office spaces/lofts, and indie coffee shops.

    The Label Chair

    Want to get your own? Then pop by Félix Guyon & La Firme's page to see more products shots and get their contact info.

    Images: Allen McEachern


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    A clever way to get you to jump in the water without freaking out...and looking like you're in a Mr. Bean's summer episode. (You guys watch Mr. Bean too, right?)

    Designed by Ich Bin Kong, this kind of project could be the answer to all of those people that freeze when they try to jump from the diving board. Ich Bin Kong merged a powerful message (love) with a his own personal taste (the name of one of his favorite songs by the Pointer Sisters), and the result is a pool with a powerful message.

    To be honest, it's kind of hard to feel the love when you hit the water flat on your belly, but at least with this idea you get to read some encouraging words while you try to catch your breath.

    Jump for my love. Image credit: Ich Bin Kong [http://ichbinkong.de/project/jump-for-my-love.html]

    I hope this project spreads out to other pools around the world. Wouldn't it be awesome to add some art to the mix?

    If you want to see more (amazing) pictures of this project, including the blue print, visit Ich Bin Kong's page.

    BONUS: 22 Ridiculously Awesome Floats.


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    I know we all know this, but it's never not interesting to me to recall that our modern notion of "brand" - small companies and giant corporations, logos and awareness and identities - were born from those literal brands: distinct identities burned with a hot iron stamp.   Modern Farmer shares this intriguing history and look at the practice. 

    What on the surface seems a straightforward practice of laconic, no-nonsense plainsmen, cattle branding is in fact a playground of design and cowboy semiotics. Symbols, visual puns and jaunty combinations of letters, numbers and styles make up a tradition of brand design that’s held steady through decades, giving rise to such notorious brands as the “XIT”, the “Running W” and the “7 Up”.

    Interestingly, they also share the iconographic components of cattle rustling, that is, forging the brand to another symbol, thereby allowing the cattle to be stolen.

    "While cattle owners deployed their brands, cattle rustlers on the make were just as ingenious in coming up with ways to alter or falsify existing brands. Rustlers made use of 'running irons' with hooked tips to forge or change brands, branding freehand under cover of night. Being caught by an angry cattleman with a running iron in your possession meant instant death for many rustlers, but the temptation was hard to resist. Adding a few lines or curves to a brand could quickly turn someone else’s cattle into your own, and inspired rustlers were skilled in the sleight of hand that could transform a 'Bar S' into a '48' or a 'Flying U' into a '7 Up.' "

    A quick and excellent read - Brand Awareness: Decoding Cattle Brands [Modern Farmer, via @LaughingSquid]


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    Concrete bar. Photo by Matthew Williamson via [http://mechantdesign.blogspot.fr/2013/06/brazil-summer-house.html]

    Adding new decor at home can be quite a hassle, unless you have a concrete idea of what you want. So,  get inspired with this guy-friendly concrete decor roundup! Hopefully one or two of these solid ideas will be to your taste. (Ok, I'll stop).   

    1. A concrete bar:  Skip that wobbly wooden table and go straight to a solid concrete bar. This will add a very masculine twist to any area and, if you live in a super hot/tropical area, it’ll keep the room nice and cool.

     

     Concrete planters via DIY and Craft Tutorials [http://www.diyandcrafttutorials.com/diy-concrete-planters/]

    2. Concrete plantersDon’t wanna over do it? Then try something more subtle like these concrete planters, which you can make at home. Add a few easy-to-keep plants and you’re set. This kind of planter are also a very sleek and modern way of adding some greens to your home.

    Concrete home. Image credit: Adrià Goula, via [http://www.archdaily.com/372455/mediterrrani-32-isern-associats/]

    3. A Concrete Home: Ok, this one is pretty intense, but it’s an a viable option if you’re planning to renovate your home. By leaving the concrete facade exposed, you provide an industrial look without too much effort - plus I bet it’ll save you tons of money on paint.

     

    Exposed concrete wall via Homedit [http://www.homedit.com/contemporary-summer-house-by-filter-arkiteketer/]

    4. An exposed concrete wallBy combining a few warm elements in your home like wood and textiles, you can achieve this super sleek look. If you are planning to add a feature wall, you should definitely consider exposed concrete, it'll save you lots of time (no wallpaper hassles) and it will keep the room neutral.

     

    A concrete table by DIY My Homes [http://diymyhomes.wordpress.com/2012/08/22/diy-concrete-table/]

    5. Make a concrete tableA sturdy alternative to the average coffee table, this modern DIY project is both, easy and affordable. If you want to add a bit more shine to it, add a lacquered finish and you're set.

    6. DIY Concrete Coasters - If you're looking for an easy way to start experimenting with concrete, check out this ManMade tutorial for casting your own coasters. 

     


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    A few weeks ago, we set about trying to come up with the perfect style combo for the urban bike commuter. And while our option was professional and a bit dressy, there are still those with jobs that demand wearing a suit, or those special occasions when dedicated cyclists end up on their bikes in a suit.   In those cases, I'm digging this guide by Matthew for Birchbox Man. He provides suggestions to both set up your bike fit for success, but also how to control issues like sweat, helmet hair, and dealing with the chain and drive train while wearing pressed pants. 

    Good stuff: How to Ride a Bike in a Suit 

     

    [Top Photo: (cc) Hugger Industries

     


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    It's the most important meal of the day, and as far as the perfect breakfast, it's hard to beat an egg. If you ask many of the world's greatest chefs what the ultimate mark of someone who knows how to cook, they'll say, "have them make me an egg."   

    created at: 07/02/2013
    See, on the one hand, eggs are simple: there's the white, there's the yolk, you heat it, and you eat it. But on the other hand, an egg's unique two-part structure means there's a lot going on, and plenty to mess up.   

    But we say a perfectly cooked egg is a skill worth figuring out. They've become synonymous with breakfast for a reason: it's good to eat protein and a little fat in the morning; it helps you feel full, and gives you more zip than carbohydrates like cereal or a muffin alone. And though we all need to watch our cholesterol, eating whole eggs are important. The yolk contains lots of nutrients, including those all-important antioxidants and omega-3s. As long as you don't eat more than two yolks a day, most healthy men will be okay. (I usually do one whole egg and one white).

    And, of course, the luxury: there's nothing better to swipe up with a piece of toast, or mix in with the rest of your plate. So, we're taking the position that making the perfect fried, sunny-side up is a skill we think every guy should have, and here's the easy trick to do it:

    Use the oven. The hard part about a sunny-side up egg, or any runny presentation, is cooking the whites until set without breaking or overcooking the yolk. Traditional wisdom says use a lid on your skillet, but I find that doesn't really help the whites to set much better. Others say baste them in butter, which I'm sure will work, but that's a little rich for an average weekday breakfast that already includes egg yolks. So? The oven.

    How to: Cook a Perfect Sunny-Side Up Egg

    My very favorite thing about this method is it requires little-to-no work once the egg is in the pan. Just heat the skillet, crack the shell, and let the oven do the work while you make your morning coffee or tea. 

    Step One: Preheat the oven to 350° F. Place an oven-proof skillet on the range over medium heat to pre-heat the bottom of the pan, without heating the sides or handle. (Most skillets, even non-stick, are oven safe at this temperature, but check to be sure. Or, go the ManMade route and use a cast iron skillet, which is guaranteed to work.) 

    Step Two: Once your oven and pan are heated, place a little oil or butter in the pan (spray is fine), and carefully crack or lower your egg(s) in the skillet. Use a spatula to contain the flow, making a little wall of cooked white to control the spread.

    Step Three: Place the skillet in the oven, and allow to cook until the whites are set. The gentle convection of oven will cook the top of the egg, while the conduction of the pre-heated skillet cook the bottom of the egg, creating the little flavorful crispy bits. Season and enjoy.

    created at: 07/02/2013

    So, the actual work involved here is, like, 30 seconds. The trick to learn is how long you oven takes to preheat to 350°, and when you need to place your skillet the heat. You could pre-heat the skillet in the oven, but I find that the direct heat of the burner gets the skillet perfectly hot to set the white so it doesn't run all around the pan when you add the egg. It works for me; experiment with the best routine for your kitchen.

    If you like your yolks a little more done, this method works equally well. Just leave the pan in a little longer until the yolk has thickened, and the bottom has started to coagulate. If you like your eggs well done and completely cooked, you can use this method as well, but it may help to flip your egg once (over well) to make sure the yolk is cooked through. Setting the yolk this way will prevent it from breaking on the flip.

    Give it a shot, and let us know how it goes in the comments below. Good morning!

     


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    The SPOOLSTOOL by Joe Levy [http://www.behance.net/gallery/SPOOLSTOOL/9530227]

    Whoa... Part coffee table, part extension cord, part desk lamp, part stool, part piece of functional art. Indeed, good things come in small packages.   

    The SPOOLSTOOL is a whole lot of action in a modern, ergonomic design. Constructed in warm European beech, this fancy stool has a mid-century vibe that complements any creative space.

    Now, as for functionality, I love the idea of using the "spool" to keep the extension cord nice and untangled, I also like that you can use it to plug in your favorite devices instead of having to use one of those plastic multiple outlets. What I'm not sold on 100% (that's just me) is the lamp function, which is an LED light source included in one of the legs.

    Would I want to disassemble a nice table so I can have a lamp on my desk? Not sure. Would I use it as a power-up station + table/modern stool? Heck yes!

    What about you? Do you like this kind of minimal design packed with lots of features? 

    To see more product shots, visit Joe Levy's Behance page.

     

    P.S- I'm sure you'll love this Hexo-Modular garden  also designed by Mr. Levy. Am I right?

     

     

     


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    created at: 07/08/2013

    Even in the days of impact drivers, cordless, battery-powered nailers , and more kinds of screw heads that one can name, sometimes a hammer is still the best tool for the job. And while the process seems simple, anyone who's ever used will tell you: there's a lot to go wrong.   There's the physics, but also issues of accuracy, muscle control, the material into which you're driving, the type of hardware, and, of course, the final appearance of the project. 

    Makezine has assembled ten tips that discuss gear, force, hitting such a small target, and some solid ideas for strength of the joint. A few are definitely worth committing to memory.

    Ten Tips for Hammering Nails[Makezine.com] 


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