Three stacked spruce ‘shoeboxes’ reimagine a 1934 house in Ljubljana

June 22, 2017 by  
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This renovated house in Slovenia consists of three spruce-covered volumes stacked up like shoeboxes. Ofis Arhitekti renovated a house designed by architect Emil Navinsek in 1934 as a home for his two sisters. The new structure expands the existing floor plan with a stacked structure that creates pleasant overhangs and terraces. The house is located on a street with homes built mostly in the 1960s and 1970s. It is here where Slovenian architect Emil Navinsek (known for innovative school space concepts) built his own residence and a house for his two unmarried elderly sisters next to it. It is the latter one that underwent an extensive renovation. Related: Build your own tiny home or treehouse with these stackable wooden micro-units Ofis Architects introduced three stacked cubic volumes that combine a concrete base, metal frames and wooden substructure. Each shoebox volume was clad in dark spruce to soften the structured shape. While renovating the existing structure, the team added an extension that protrudes through the old walls and creates a living room on the ground floor, kids rooms and guest room on the first floor, and master bedroom housed on the top floor. A staircase attached to a main vertical concrete wall, located at the heart of the house, acts as an intersection of volumes and connector of old and new. The entire interior is inspired by Adolf Loos and features elevated podiums, niches and small sitting areas. + Ofis Arhitekti Photos by Tomaz Gregoric

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Three stacked spruce ‘shoeboxes’ reimagine a 1934 house in Ljubljana

Naturally cooled Otunba Offices has a small footprint but a large social impact

June 9, 2017 by  
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This low-cost sustainable office building in Lagos, Nigeria, can be easily and affordably replicated anywhere in the world. With its minimal footprint and ample public space, the design allows work productivity to flourish while nurturing a sense of community. The innovative space by Domaine Public Architects  features passive house principles including natural ventilation and the clever use of vegetation to minimize energy use. Affordability and replicability were the main ideas behind the Otunba Offices, a new low-cost office building prototype that can be built anywhere with minimal financial impact on project budget. The building lessens its impact on the environment by minimizing its footprint and expanding upper floors. This design approach allowed the architects to form communal areas that communicate with the neighborhood and the city and provide multi-purpose areas for social interaction. Related: WOHA revamps Singapore office with lush ‘pocket parks’ The project utilizes passive house principles to achieve a high energy performance. Its orientation provides natural shading, while a double layer of vegetation, flexible louvers and natural ventilation lower the reliance on mechanical cooling systems. The concept, currently under construction, has received commendation by the jury of AR Future Projects Awards, in the “Offices” category. + Domaine Public Architects Via v2com

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Naturally cooled Otunba Offices has a small footprint but a large social impact

These minimalist prefab cabins are designed for human "recharging"

May 22, 2017 by  
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Innovative charging stations for cars or electronics are a dime a dozen these days, but finally, one savvy Danish company has created a place where people can go to recharge their own batteries. Known for their simplistic metal and ceramic homeware line, Danish retailer Vipp is now venturing into the minimalistic dwellings sector with Shelter, a prefabricated monochromatic cabin designed to serve as an escape from urban chaos. The 600-square-foot cabins, which retail for approximately $543,00, were designed to be nature retreats and serve as a “battery-charging station for humans”, said Kasper Egelund, head of VIPP. Much like the company’s simple, but sturdy housewares, the cabin design is elegant and minimalistic. The monochromatic metal and glass cabin easily blends into any natural setting. The rectangular structure is set on piers to reduce its impact on its location. Related: MUJI to sell eagerly awaited $27k minimalist tiny homes this fall On the interior, a simple open layout gives the space a quiet, serene feel. The main level houses a kitchen, a dining area, a bathroom and a small bedroom with a fireplace. A sleeping loft with a glass ceiling is reached by ladder. Floor-to-ceiling glass panels cover one full side of the structure, which not only connects the interior to the exterior, but provides optimal natural light to the living space. The steel-framed Shelter cabins are prefabricated just north of Copenhagen and take just six months to construct and only three to five days to install. The cabins even come furnished with Vipp products such as shelving, lighting, lines, soap dispensers, etc. + Vipp Via Dezeen Images via Vipp

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These minimalist prefab cabins are designed for human "recharging"

Japanese food artist carves fruits into incredible masterpieces using just an X-Acto knife

May 15, 2017 by  
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Playing with your food is generally frowned upon, but Japanese artist Gaku elevates humble fruits and veggies into art with his skilled and gorgeous carvings . With a simple X-Acto knife, he expertly embellishes radishes, papaya, apples, taro root and more. Honoring and exploring the Japanese and Thai traditions of food carving, Gaku makes precise cuts into his chosen fruit or vegetable. His designs often take on traditional Japanese floral and wave patterns and are amazingly detailed and intricate, especially considering the ephemeral nature of his creations . Some of his elaborate works incorporate real and fantastical animals , such as a crab design carved into an apple or dragons carved into eggplant or a banana. As bananas are cheap and readily available, Gaku says they are an good option for practicing food carving. Gaku’s attention to detail and careful cuts are truly impressive. This self-taught food artist began food carving as a hobby, and he is also a chef. Related| Extraordinary banana art etchings are inspiring and edible One of the most amazing elements of these designs is how quickly Gaku must work. As any foodie knows, bananas, apples, and avocados are fickle, turning brown and less visually attractive within mere minutes. Gaku’s pristine photos, which he chronicles on Instagram , barely show any sign of the dreaded oxidation . Almost 60,000 followers anxiously await his next mukimono-style food carving. In addition to apples and lemons, Gaku has carved pumpkins, carrots, zucchini, and some type of leaf or stalk, which he transformed into grasshoppers. One of the ideas behind these food carvings is to appreciate the beauty of simple fruits and vegetables, and we love how the stunning images instantly expand viewer’s artistic imaginations. We also love Gaku’s not-so-precious approach to his creations when they are done: he eats them. You can watch some of Gaku’s process here in this mesmerizing Instavideo. + Gaku on Instagram Via Booooooom and This is Colossal

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Japanese food artist carves fruits into incredible masterpieces using just an X-Acto knife

Scientists discover enough new forests to cover 60% of Australia

May 15, 2017 by  
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A new survey of the world’s dryland habitats has found a massive amount of previously unreported forests — 467 million hectares (over 1.1 billion acres), which is 45 percent more forest than found in past surveys. The newly discovered dryland forests cover an area equivalent to 60 percent of the size of Australia, putting dryland forest extent on par with tropical rainforests and boreal forests. The discovery could be good news for reversing global warming as it increases the estimates of total global forest carbon stocks by 15 gigatons to 158 gigatons — an increase of 2 percent to 20 percent. Although dryland biomes occupy more than 40 percent of the Earth’s land surface, these forests were previously difficult to spot because of the relatively low density of the trees . Technological advances have made it easier to accurately measure dryland forests as demonstrated in this survey. The scientists used Google Earth Engine to analyze high-resolution satellite images of more than 210,000 dryland sites in order to determine tree number and density. The researchers then compared samples of their findings with field information for accuracy. Related: Meet the teen planting 150 trees for every person on Earth The study’s authors point out the importance of understanding dryland forests and dryland ecosystems because climate modeling suggests these biomes could expand by 11 percent to 23 percent by the end of the century, covering more than half of the Earth’s land surface. “Considering the potential of dryland forests to stave off desertification and to fight climate change by storing carbon, it will be crucial to keep monitoring the health of these forests, now that we know they are there,” said University of Adelaide School of Biological Sciences professors Andrew Lowe and Ben Sparrow, co-authors of the study. + The extent of forest in dryland biomes Via Phys.org Images via TERN AusPlots

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Scientists discover enough new forests to cover 60% of Australia

Patagonia made $10 million for charity on Black Friday

December 3, 2016 by  
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In a single day, outdoor retailer Patagonia raised 10 million bucks for the environment. All of the sales from Black Friday are going to grassroots organizations working to protect the planet. Think of it as a fundraiser for the Earth that shattered previous records.

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Patagonia made $10 million for charity on Black Friday

This 86 year old man learned how to knit so he could make hats for preemies

November 26, 2016 by  
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Ed Moseley was looking for a way to make a difference in the world from inside his assisted living facility. So he picked up some needles and yarn and learned how to knit so that he could help provide caps for premature babies to help keep them cozy and warm. So far, he has churned out 50 of these hats and he hopes to make 30 a month going forward.

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This 86 year old man learned how to knit so he could make hats for preemies

13 giant bird nests for humans that just beg you to cozy up and relax

November 19, 2016 by  
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There’s something about a giant bird nest that screams enchanted fairytale. We’ve rounded up 13 of these magical nests that are perfect for kids and the kid-at-heart. From exotic spirit nests to cozy little reading nests that just beg you to climb in and cuddle up, there’s something for to inspire everyone.  

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13 giant bird nests for humans that just beg you to cozy up and relax

This scarf can filter pollution and monitor local air quality

September 24, 2016 by  
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It’s a daily reality that many of us have to live with: inescapable smoggy, polluted air that harms our health. You could wear a gas mask around town, but what if you could wear something a little more practical and stylish? The Wair scarf can neutralize harmful emissions, monitor air quality and let you breathe easy all while looking good and feeling comfortable.

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This scarf can filter pollution and monitor local air quality

Iconic Game of Thrones battle brought to life with massive 3D embroidery

July 16, 2016 by  
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Game of Thrones   Night King , leader of the White Walkers, resurrected hundreds of slain Wildlings in what is now widely considered one of the hit HBO series’s most thrilling scenes. To celebrate the show’s DVD release, HBO commissioned the  Embroiderer’s Guild to recreate the massacre of Hardhome . The result is awe-inspiring 3D embroidery made by Britain’s leading textile artisans. READ MORE > 

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Iconic Game of Thrones battle brought to life with massive 3D embroidery

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