Images: Pietro Firrincieli
The Lastika chair designed by Velichko Velikov for Italian manufacturer LAGO consists of a circular frame supported by forty bands of elastic.  It is intended to resemble a daisy but looks more like a  trampoline and is equally fun to sit in as the elastics create a rocking sensation.  The chair is both lightweight and stackable.

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Image: Anwar Ragep
I think at this point everyone has at least one pair of Havianas, so what's a brand to do to keep things fresh, interesting and perhaps to reach a whole new demographic?  It brings in a well-established designer to breathe life into its line.  During New York Fashion Week in September 2010, Havaianas did just that when it unveiled the new Michael Bastian + Havaianas Collection at Bastian’s Spring 2011 show.  The collection features four styles inspired by two motifs that featured prominently in Bastian's Spring 2011 Men’s Collection and I think the colour-story and the designs work well.

See all four designs after the jump.

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Image: Uniqlo

Uniqlo will collaborate with nine New York-based designers this Spring including Costello Tagliapietra, Charlotte Ronson and Vena Cava.  Each will design six pieces for sale in Uniqlo stores at their  characteristically low price-point.  The collaborations hit stores with Costello Tagliapietra's collection on Apri 21 and will include the easy but chic nautical striped dress by Charlotte Ronson pictured above.


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Image: Lancome
In this latest collaboration, Lancome have released limited-edition mini juicy tubes in this adorable packaging designed by Japanese artists Yayoi Kusama.

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You won't see any anthropomorphic animals like frogs or whales on this playground.  Spanish designer Agatha Ruiz de la Prada in collaboration with Colomer has designed the most beautiful playground sets featuring her characteristic palette of bright colours and bold geometric shapes.

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Image: Crate and Barrel

Marimekko launches a new e-shop today in collaboration with Crate and Barrel following its store-within-a-store at Crate and Barrel's SoHo location.

The two companies have long been partners and Marimekko's patterns have been available at Crate and Barrel since 1967.  This new venture expands the Finnish design house's access to the North American market.  Crate and Barrel will have exclusive rights to retail Marimekko interior decoration products in the US and Canada such as glassware, pillows, fabric, bags and accessories, as well as Marimekko products made under licence such as bedding and bath textiles.

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Image: James Jarvis
This week it's all collaborations, all the time, starting off with Coke which is celebrating its 125th Anniversary with the help of British illustrator and toy manufacturer James Jarvis by putting out these limited-edition cans, available only in Hong Kong.

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Images: J.Crew
Here's a look at some of my favourites from J.Crew Collection's Fall line.  The Collection is a limited edition, seasonally updated range of clothes.

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Image: Gray Label

Kite flying on Good Friday and over the Easter holidays is practically mandatory here, so imagine how wonderful would it be to fly this gorgeous pirate ship kite on beaches which were home to pirates hundreds of years ago.  Made in Bali, the kite is handmade and is only available here.

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Image: Unknown
... called "Svarva Spotting" which consists of seeing how often the lamp I wrote about here and here pops up in print. It's more than a little bittersweet for me as I have just attempted to buy one, but the lamp appears to have sold out in the US, so my chances of getting one look slim to nonexistent right now.

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Image: Heineken USA
Although it has been out for a few months, Heineken's STR Bottle is garnering some buzz at the Salone Internazionale del Mobile in Milan because of a design promotion which will culminate with the launch of a unveiling of a "pop up club" at that event in 2012.

As an aluminium bottle which feels like a can, it looks impressive enough, however when viewed under a black light such as in a nightclub, the bottle takes on an entirely new look: it changes to reveal the previously hidden graphics pictured above.  A simple but highly effective idea.

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Images: Sticks & Stones

The most interesting jewellery out there need not be made from precious metals or stones. I particularly like these rings by Portland, Oregon based collaborative Sticks & Stones.  Their jewellery, which includes bracelets and necklaces, is made from reclaimed wood and accented in fine metals and semi-precious stones such as black diamonds, white sapphires, topaz, turquoise and lapis lazuli.  The Spring|Summer 2011 collection goes further, by adding new materials like deer antlers, purpleheart wood and vegetable ivory to their repertoire.

More images after the jump.

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Image: Caliroots.com
How cool are these limited-edition sneakers from Puma? Called the Faas 500 Jamaica, they are made in that country's national colours and are available exclusively here.

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Images: SmartPlayhouse
... or art for the garden. These SmartPlayhouses, designed by a Spanish company, are intended to be kid- as well as environmentally-friendly.  Made largely from marine-grade Birch board, the houses are built with top-quality materials and are designed to be resistant to all sorts of weather conditions (although I doubt that they have been tested in hurricane force winds and rain).  The houses are custom built and can be personalised with a range of different floors and colours to choose from.  Specifications are sent to the manufacturer and a few weeks later, the completed article is shipped.  Assistance to construct the house is provided but they are designed to be easily assembled in a few hours.

I think these beautiful little retreats would be a great addition to any property, especially in a country where the weather is warm and a large portion of time is spent outdoors (although the houses may be used indoors as well).

SmartPlayhouses are available here.  Pictures of more designs and details after the jump. 

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Image: Target
I wrote about the upcoming collaboration between Target and Calypso St Barts here and can now bring you a first look at the designs.

Many of the designs have a hippyish vibe, but most of them appear to be wearable, if not a tad conservative.  The collection is strong on long flowing dresses and kaftans with a few swimwear pieces and accessories.  As usual, it will be interesting to see the quality and price of the items and gauge how the collection does when it hits stores on 1 May.

A few favourites from the collection after the jump.

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Images: Nendo
Definitely to be filed under weird and wonderful is this transparent chair by Nendo.  Made from polyurethane, a film which is used most commonly as a packing material, the structure is extremely elastic and returns to its original state when pressure is removed.  Given that it wraps and enfolds the sitter's body, it looks like it would be quite comfortable too.

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Image: Shopbop.com
Love this hinged wooden bangle from Marc by Marc Jacobs.

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Images: No Picnic
As featured at Milan's Design Week, I love these ALMA swings from No Picnic, a Swedish design consultancy.  Featuring high gloss, lacquered seats in bold colours I think they are a clever combination of sleek modernity and rustic charm.

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Image: Urban Outfitters
When your toddler is ready to graduate to full-sized cutlery, why not maintain a bit of whimsy at mealtimes with this set of mismatched cutlery manufactured by a company in the Netherlands and available here.

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Images: Nooka
I love an unusual watch. It doesn't necessarily have to be the most expensive watch out there, but it should be interesting and beautiful to look at.

A couple of years ago I discovered the Nooka line of watches and the Zub collection in particular. What I love most about them is that they take the telling of time to a whole different level.  Rather than treating time as the circular progression we are familiar with, the Zub depicts the passage of time visually in linear form. While it takes some getting used to initially, after a few days it was possible to tell the time accurately at a glance by the picture the dots and lines formed on the face of the watch.  

It really is a different way to tell the time and the design is truly inspired: and instant classic.

Close ups of some of the watches after the jump. 

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Image: Daniel King
Lacoste and Catherine Malandrino have collaborated with questionable success on a line of tennis-inspired sportswear and a first look at the results are above. The capsule collection, which includes a tie-dyed cotton tennis dress, harem pants and a floor-length white pointelle tennis dress, will hit Lacoste and Malandrino stores on April 20.

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Images: Tea Collection
Tea Collection has long been a great resource for beautiful, well-made (but not overly cute) children's clothes, but surprisingly the line has never featured here before.  Each season, or in some instances several times in a particular season, different global cultures are highlighted and used as inspiration for the line.  

A few months ago, Tea Collection launched a line of clothes for women; mainly scarves, t-shirts and sweaters - all very sensible and practical.  It's a cautious segue into a new market, but while I love the kids' clothes but none of the adult designs have grabbed my attention yet.  I am happy to give them the benefit of the doubt and perhaps my opinion will change after a few more seasons.

More pictures of the women's line after the jump.

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Images: via Freshome
Oh to be a kid again if it means getting to hang out in this really fantastical space!

These are pictures of a climbing net created by artist Toshiko Horiuchi Macadam which has been built within the Hakone Pavilion at the Hakone Open-Air Museum, Japan. The pavilion, itself is a beautiful architectural structure, is made of timber joined together using traditional wood joints in a random and haphazard manner and was built to provide young visitors to the museum with a safe and sheltered play area.   

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Image: Imm Living
Image: Esther Horchner

I wrote about the "Musings" bowl here and it got me thinking about all the other things with hidden reveals I've been seeing recently.  Take these two above: Imm Living has produced three styles of teacup with a fox, an owl and a bear respectively which are slowly revealed as the beverage is consumed. The teapot by Esther Horchner is more subtle, an inside joke if you will, as the image of the woman is only apparent to the person brewing the tea.

You can find all three teacups from Imm Living here and see Esther Horchner's work here.

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Image: agnès b.
In addition to recent retail forays by Alexander Wang and Isabel Marant, agnès b. today opens a concept store (branded a "gallery boutique") in New York's Soho neighbourhood two years after leaving the area.

The gallery-shop space will feature art exhibitions throughout the year, and to commemorate the groundbreaking, the French designer has collaborated with some of the artists that will be shown in the space on her latest Artist T-Shirt series, including Ryan McGinness, Ryan McGinley, José Parlá and Harmony Korine (whose design is pictured above).

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Images: via Freshome
This unique, handmade sideboard by Edward Johnson called the Volumptuous sideboard is made of oak and internally lined with cedar.  The frame of the piece has been moulded to follow the form of each laminated panel, giving an undulating, almost topographical feel to the piece.  The Volumptuous sideboard is about as sensuous as furniture can get: it is visually stimulating and enticingly tactile.

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