“Food Crayon” lets you playfully garnish your dishes with ingredient-flavored shavings! Move over, SaltBae!

Instead of sprinkling fresh herbs or grating parmesan shavings over your food, these flavor-packed crayon-shaped edible sticks let you garnish your food in a playfully fun way!

The wacky idea for crayon-based garnishing comes from Montreal-based Nadia Lahrichi, who runs the company along with her brother, Kamil, and mom, Veronique. Together, they call themselves the Foodie Family and with their combined backgrounds in cooking, biochemistry, and marketing, they’re reinventing how we interact with our food! The Food Crayons really don’t need much explaining – traditional crayons are made from wax and dye and are formed into the crayon shape… Food Crayons, on the other hand, are made from food ingredients suspended in an edible substrate, agar-agar. Commonly used as a gelling agent, and a vegan alternative to animal-based gelatine, the agar-agar helps bind the ingredients into the crayon shape. Once the crayon’s been cast, they can easily be shaved over food, flavoring it in an absolutely engaging and exciting way!

The gastronomic crayon sticks come in a variety of flavors – both sweet and savory. Perfect for seasoning your dish with, they add a touch of brightness without you needing to grate, shred, julienne herbs, grind peppercorns, or even prepare sauces, compotes, and vinaigrettes. The flavors include classics like basil, lemon, ginger, and shallot, to more exotic ingredients like porcini mushrooms or black garlic, and even interesting combos that include chilli and garlic, balsamic and figs, curry and turmeric, or honey and mustard. Perfect for upgrading your dishes, the creators recommend adding 5-10 shavings on top of your food. It’s an incredibly fun way to make food taste better, and the crayons barely occupy space on your kitchen spice rack!

All the flavors are plant-based, gluten-free, and vegan (barring the honey mustard). You could buy individual crayons, or create your own box-set of colors/flavors to choose from. Food Crayon even sells a neat little sharpener to do the trick, so you don’t have to borrow one from your kid’s stationery set.

Ultimately, the same way a crayon adds a dash of vibrancy to a blank paper, the Food Crayons bring about vibrancy to your regular meals or drinks, giving them a zing or a pep that’s difficult to miss. Yes, I said drinks, because the company just released a Piña Colada-flavored crayon too! Don’t judge me if I directly chomp right into that one…

Designer: Food Crayon

Unusually creative cabinet opens by tilting forward!

The Pivot rightfully uses gravity as a design feature! Instead of sliding drawers, a nifty little pivot joint at the base of this cabinet allows individual drawers to open by tilting forward. It’s clever, fun, and makes it easy to access your belongings without having to dig around! Just don’t expect it to be hyper-organized though!

Designer: Raw Edges Design Studio for Arco

The Pivot is an incredibly fun chest of drawers designed to be used independently or as a part of a desk. The pivoting mechanism is convenient and easy to use, allowing the drawer to slide open with little to no effort since gravity does most of the work. There are no sliding components, no bearings and railings, and nothing that would cause the drawers to get jammed, forcing you to yell “PIVOTTT”! (I couldn’t NOT make that joke)

Its simplicity extends beyond the cabinet’s unique pivoting detail. The cabinet comes with a wall-mounted design, and sports just two legs, sort of like an easel. It’s definitely interesting to look at and probably a lot of fun to interact with!

This mood-sensing radio plays news based on how you’re feeling when you wake up

“Well begun is half the work done!” says Varenya Raj, the designer behind Nidra, a radio that helps people monitor their mood when they wake up.

Right off the back, Nidra looks quite unlike most bedside radios. It sports a half-log-shaped design with a plush button on one end, a soft carpet on another, and a printer in between. The idea behind the Nidra stems from starting your day off on the right note. If you wake up in a less-than-ideal mood, whack the cushion as you would at a game of whack-a-mole, and Nidra plays out positive news. If you’re in a pretty good mood when you wake up, gently stroke the velvety carpet, and Nidra plays news across different categories. At the end of the month, the radio prints out a little docket letting you know where your mood’s been over the last 30 days, helping you chart your sleep schedule as well as mental and emotional wellbeing.

Designer: Varenya Raj

Nidra - Mood-sensing Radio by Varenya Raj

The idea for Nidra stemmed from the concept of ‘time being equal to money’. Created as the ultimate productivity tool (because you’re much more productive and focused when you’re in a good mood), Nidra’s aim was to help office-goers have a better overview of their overall mental health. Needless to say, Nidra’s appeal has vastly evolved thanks to the pandemic, and it’s now more of a general mental-health tool. Strike it on your bad days for a pick-me-up, stroke it on your good days for general news, and Nidra charts how you’ve felt over the past month. It prints out a tiny slip for you to analyze and hopefully retrospect over, so your next month is better than your last.

Nidra - Mood-sensing Radio by Varenya Raj

Nidra - Mood-sensing Radio by Varenya Raj

On the inside, the Nidra contains a button, a force-sensing resistor, a thermal printer, a speaker, and an Arduino UNO computer that powers the device. The button’s designed to be pretty large and cushioned, so you could easily slam it while half-asleep, while the FSR comes with a soft, fluffy cloth similar to dog-fur. Depending on which part of Nidra you interact with, the interactions are inputted and received by the Arduino PC which processes it and appropriately chooses an RSS-based news feed to read out. A tiny button on front of the device lets you control Nidra’s volume too!

Nidra - Mood-sensing Radio by Varenya Raj

Did you know you could make complex rotating gears with just magnets?! Watch to see how they work!

You see gears in action and they’re pretty easy to fathom. Metal wheels with interlocking teeth – rotate one wheel and the other wheel rotates in the opposite direction. Change the size of one wheel and it affects the speed at which the other wheel rotates. That’s basically how any simple gearbox on an automobile/bicycle works, translating rotations from a motor or your feet into rotating wheels. What happens when you replace the teeth with magnets? The video above wonderfully explains how gears can work without the mechanical action of interlocking teeth… in fact, they can work without even touching each other! These magnetic gears are pretty interesting and whimsical to look at!

DIY Magnetic Gears Video

YouTuber Magnetic Games shows how these gears work by putting them together from scratch. With 3 3D-printed wheels, the apparatus comes to life. One wheel holds 32 magnets (16 on each side), while the other houses 8 magnets (4 on each side). A third stationary wheel comes with bolts attached in each hole (helping the magnetic attraction pass from one wheel to another), and the apparatus is set up with the wheels on a common axle.

DIY Magnetic Gears Video

Rotating one wheel causes the other to turn in the opposite direction. The wheel with more magnets rotates at a slower pace, while the wheel with less magnets rotates with a higher speed (sort of like a larger gear and smaller gear). Obviously, the magnetic resistance isn’t comparable to the physical resistance of metal gears (you couldn’t really use these in a car or bicycle), but it DOES highlight a unique relationship between gears and magnets – something I knew nothing of until now! Plus, think about it this way, less physical contact = less wear-and-tear…

DIY Magnetic Gears Video

DIY Magnetic Gears Video

Via TheAwesomer

Tiny Axe-Throwing Game Played with Real, Miniature Axes

Because danger comes in all shapes and sizes (including miniature), this is the Small Viking Axe Game available from Firebox for $116. It’s a real axe-throwing game played with tiny, but still very sharp, axes. I can already close my eyes and see myself wrapping my bloody hand in a t-shirt and yelling for my wife.

As a huge fan of both miniature weaponry and throwing sharp objects, this game is a no-brain purchase for myself. Will my wife try to intercept the package and hide it from me? If she knows what’s best for me, most definitely.

The set includes a wooden target with string for hanging (preferably outdoors), three miniatures axes with burlap carrying sack, nine replacement shafts, one shaft replacement tool, and a rulebook. Obviously, I don’t need a rulebook and will make up the rules as I go along. Presumably, something along the lines of ‘last one to bleed, wins, but does have to drive all the losers to the hospital.’

With bright colors and blockish designs, this furniture collection makes the office playful!

If the OFIS Collection by chmara.rosinke vaguely reminds you of LEGO bricks, Minecraft, or Jenga, let it be known that it’s completely intentional! There’s a common consensus that making objects curved allows them to look less threatening and more playful, but the OFIS shows that if done right, the opposite is just as true!

Constructed from timber, and colored with strictly monochrome hues, the OFIS Collection’s furniture promotes a sense of fun and relaxation. The collection, which includes a swivel chair, a kneeling stool, desk, chaise-longue, and standing luminaire, follows a somewhat Constructivist-meets-Memphis 2.0 design approach, and questions everything we know about form and its relationship with comfort as well as spaces. Even the name OFIS flouts the traditional spelling, showing how the collection looks at reinterpreting our “professional” and “serious” relationship with our office and its artifacts. The collection debuted after the COVID-19 pandemic rocked the world, as a way of making the office appear more benign. As these professional workspaces began infiltrating our homes and sacred spaces, designers Ania Rosinke and Maciej Chmara felt the term ‘office furniture’ needed an absolute makeover. With the OFIS series of furniture, chmara.rosinke hope to ‘soften the edges’ of the ‘hard’-working attitude we’re supposed to embody at work… even though the furniture pieces themselves showcase hard, blocky, geometric forms!

Designers: Ania Rosinke and Maciej Chmara of Studio chmara.rosinke

TinyTV DIY Kit Lets You Build Your Own Tiny Television

You know what the problem with televisions is? They’re too big. In the quest for constantly larger screens, our scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn’t stop to think if they should. I personally love eye strain. Introducing the $64 TinyTV DIY Kit from TinyCircuits, it comes with everything you need to assemble your own miniature television in five minutes and with no skill required. My kind of project!

The TinyTV DIY Kit can store up to 4 hours of video on its microSD card, which you can control with the included remote’s channel up (next video) and channel down (previous video) buttons. Or you can just do what I always do and lose the remote in the sofa and give up on ever watching TV again.

The television’s 3D printed console comes in white, but you can paint it whatever color you’d like for added realism. I painted mine brown to remind me of the very first TV, which wasn’t a TV at all, just a big cardboard box with a hole cut out and my brother inside pretending to be a news anchor. Then it was my turn to be the meteorologist! Yep, we sure had a great time last weekend.

Toy Football/Plane Hybrid Can Be Thrown Over 100 Yards

This is the Mad Fly Sports Raptor Football, a toy football/plane hybrid that can be thrown over 100 yards. So maybe for once when my brother tells me to go long, he’ll actually mean it. The toy does require a unique throw (read: not a football spiral) for the creation of maximum lift and distance though, so there is a learning curve involved.

The $50 toy, available on Amazon (affiliate link), is advertised as the world’s farthest-flying football, with ‘football’ clearly being defined very loosely here, because that is much less a ball and way more a plane. But did that stop me from starting an online petition demanding the NFL make it their new official ball? It did not.

Obviously, the ball still requires a decent arm to be able to throw it over 100 yards. With my sad arm, you’d probably have a hard time distinguishing if a throw was actually a throw or just an accidental drop. Hey, it’s not my fault Santa never brought me a Bowflex. Granted I’ve never asked for one either, but still.

[via Dude I Want That]

Architectural Designs that make you want to stay indoors!

Its been 13 weeks since 202o has started and it has brought the world to a staggering halt. With the current pandemic keeping us all locked in with only the internet at our disposal, there is no harm in fantasizing what our ideal homestay would look like. And boy, do we have some interesting options! From an enclosed courtyard, a sunken sofa to even a reading net in the library, each design here has an element that makes you want to spend more time indoors. Before I give it all way in my excitement to share, here is a curated collection of interior designs that make staying at home convenient and comfortable in these quarantined times. Who knows, this list may even inspire you to add some of these touches to your home. Stay indoors and stay safe!

Pam and Paul’s House is designed by local studio Craig Steely Architecture, located in a sloped site in northern California, with vast stretches of glass that overlook the treetops. The house is simple to look at from the outside, but inside, its the usage of elevation that differentiates it. A sunken sofa/ bed commands the attention in the living room, with block-like cushions to shape that space as needed. That sofa sure makes us want to dive into it, right from working from home to taking a small nap, it has us covered.

The Ortega Mora House designed by Estudio Transversal boasts of a courtyard enclosed within its angular space, creating the perfect retreat to relax in and cut off from the influx of rumors and news spreading across our digital channels. Perfect for meditation, or just spending some quality time with self, being quarantined in this home will be great for some self-love.

Christopher Duffy for British design brand Duffy London has created a swing table! Bringing the child-like joy of using a swing to a shared living space, this table is perfect for everything from working from home to holding important family meetings. With this table in place, the room is sure to be everyone’s favorite spot of the house!

Encouraging learning through dynamic spaces, Spanish creative studio Playoffice has designed the ‘reading net’, a meshed fabric suspended from the architecture of a family library. The hanging web is attached to the railings of a lofted path and creates a fun space for the children as well as adults to lose themselves in the imaginary world of the books they love.

A small alcove that doubles up as a sanctuary for anyone who wants to disconnect from the outside world, we are completely in love with this design by the homeowners of the Funkis Family Home.

Spanish architect Pia Mendaro defies convention and reconfigures the modern home in the design of Topo’s Shed – a home-cum-studio for her artist friend Clara Cebrian in Madrid. The brief was simple – she does not like overly designed things and thus, wanted something that could adapt to the needs that appear over a period of time. Something like a Potter-inspired ‘Ron Weasley house’, letting you add elements to the house as needed by the owner!

Dumitru Martiniuc of D3 Design Studio designed the Sixteen house, a place where dark interiors meet minimalism, making this the perfect modern bachelor pad. But what truly caught our attention is the skylight right above the bed, giving a glimpse to the starry sky as you lie in bed!

Now here is one of the things I would have in my home when I become a millionaire – a movie theater with double beds for lying down and watching your favorite movies! Called the ‘VIP Bedroom’, Cinema Pathé in Switzerland aims to give moviegoers an unforgettable experience possible from start to finish.

Miner Road designed by Faulkner Architects and located in Orlinda, California uses big windows to help the home stayer feel in touch with their surroundings. With plenty of natural light and great views of the woods, this quarantine would feel more like a retreat than social distancing!

The Sound in Mind is an interactive installation inside the Le Corbusier-designed Saint-Pierre church in Firminy, France. Visitors were invited to piece together tubes, to make listening devices in varying shapes and sizes creating different sound effects. “This project was about the participation of people, building their own sculptures and finding music as the end result.” said Suzuki.