THE BEST Art & Design

Hide and Seek: The Architecture of Cabins and Hideouts

Hide and Seek: The Architecture of Cabins and Hideouts

Need a getaway from the daily grind? We’ve always wanted a custom-built cabin in the woods to escape the world. This 256-page book by Sofia Borges and Sven Ehmann offers a visual catalog of some of the world’s most bucolic hideouts. It’s a great source of architectural inspiration and relaxing thoughts.

Making a Truncated Icosidodecahedron

Making a Truncated Icosidodecahedron

A truncated icosidodecahedron is a polyhedral shape made up of hexagonal, decagonal, and square faces. Maker Michael Mikkelson shows how he made one of the polygonal globes from laser-cut birch plywood, 3D-printed connectors, and 360 screws. Up for the challenge? Head to Instructables for the full build instructions.

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Visual Measuring Cups

Visual Measuring Cups

The sizes of regular measuring cups aren’t always obvious. But these clever cups from Welcome Industries are far more intuitive. Each cup is shaped like the fractional amount that it represents, so a 1/2-cup really is a half of a cup, and so forth. Made from durable, BPA-free Tritan, and includes 1/4-cup, 1/3-cup, 1/2-cup, and 1-cup sizes.

Making a Sword Belt

Making a Sword Belt

Inspired by the Jackie Chan movie The Spy Next Door, maker JLaservideo created a sword that stores like a belt. The tempered steel weapon works like a tape measure, bending around his waistline, then maintaining a semi-rigid shape when deployed. We’d be afraid of cutting ourselves pulling it out of its sheath.

Machined NASA Worm Logo

Machined NASA Worm Logo

The classic NASA “worm” logo is back, and now you can own a memento of this iconic work of graphic design thanks to Register Seven. The company will produce a sweet CNC-machined version of the logo milled from 6061-T6 aluminum, then anodized in NASA red, black, or grey. Measures 7.5″ w x 2″ h x 1″ d.

Creative Thinking Journal

Creative Thinking Journal

Pilgrim Soul’s unique journal is designed to stimulate creative thought with more than 50 fun exercises to loosen up your brain. Its creators say it’s best used when you’re high, which could also make your ideas a whole lot funnier too. The next time your boss wants to do a “brainstorming” session, whip out a stack of these.

Casting an Aluminum Book

Casting an Aluminum Book

Most books have covers made from thick paper, though you might find some vintage ones made from wood. What you won’t find are any books with covers made from cast aluminum. Black Beard Projects teamed up with Nerdforge to create just that, and the result is a impressive work of readable art. Watch part two here.

LEGO Archer Automaton

LEGO Archer Automaton

Jason of JK Brickworks shows of an amazing LEGO kinetic sculpture of Greek goddess Artemis. When a crank is turned, she draws her bow and fires an “arrow” made from a piece of flexible tubing. The mechanism’s design was inspired by a wooden automata created by Del Cat.

Making Aston Martin Badges

Making Aston Martin Badges

You’d think that creating a badge for a car would be no big deal, but in the case of UK luxury automaker Aston Martin, every little detail matters. Car fanatic Mr JWW visited Vaughton’s, the factory where they meticulously create each badge, and got to help make a custom badge for his special-edition DBX Q SUV.

Making a High-power Flashlight from Scratch

Making a High-power Flashlight from Scratch

You know we love a good flashlight around here. While we’ve seen lots of really slick production models, we have to hand it to M.N. Projects who built their own custom flashlight by machining billet aluminum, then outfitted it with a super-bright 30W LED and three lithium-ion batteries. They even etched their own circuit board.

Making Giant Articulated Hands

Making Giant Articulated Hands

Among his many creations, Paul from Jackman Works has made some ridiculously large hand tools. Now, to show off his new X-Carve Pro CNC machine, he built a pair of giant hands. We were hoping he might try and use them to pick up his oversize tools, but they seem pretty awkward to wield given their weight.

HexaSphericon Rolling Toy

HexaSphericon Rolling Toy

From the expert machinists at AltDynamic comes their most impressive creation yet, a family of elegant aluminum playthings which look nothing like a sphere, yet can roll like one. Each one splits down the middle and is held together with magnets. They come in three variants, each with its own unique rolling properties.

Ukiyo-e Memes

Ukiyo-e Memes

Memes of the Floating World takes the classic Japanese art style known as Ukiyo-e and applies it to popular memes like the famed Shiba Inu Doge, Longcat, and Women Yelling at Cat. The images are also available as prints from Society6.

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LEGO Ideas Wallace & Gromit

LEGO Ideas Wallace & Gromit

LEGO builder Tom Gerardin is a big fan of Aardman Animations, so he designed a fun kit that includes poseable models of Wallace, Gromit, The Cooker, Feathers Mcgraw, and Shaun the Sheep. Accessories include The Wrong Trousers, a cup of tea, cheese, crackers, and a cracker packet. Show your support on LEGO Ideas.

Woodturning Nails

Woodturning Nails

You’d think that slicing up resin blocks filled with nails on your table saw and then grinding them down on a lathe might be a bad idea for the well-being of your tools (and your body), but that didn’t stop maker R Humphrey from testing out the idea. The resulting bowl he created has some really cool textures and patterns.

Turning a Bolt into a Golden Phoenix

Turning a Bolt into a Golden Phoenix

Maker Ross The Random loves to turn ordinary items into works of art. In this video, he shows us how he transformed a simple brass bolt into a shiny metal phoenix through a series of heating, bending, hammering, filing, and cutting with basic hand tools.

3DPrintMill Infinite-Z 3D Printer

3DPrintMill Infinite-Z 3D Printer

Not long ago, we saw a custom-built 3D printer that could output infinitely-long objects. Now 3D printer company Creality is readying a version that anyone can buy. The 3DPrintMill has a heated continuous belt print bed which lets it print multiple small parts in a row, or very long objects. It offers a print accuracy of +/-0.1mm.

Russian Cyberpunk Farm

Russian Cyberpunk Farm

Sergey Vasiliev decided he had enough of the old “in Soviet Russia” trope which represents his country as technologically backward. Incorporating some clever visual effects, his brilliant short film imagines a Russian farm where everything is running on the latest tech. The footage reminds us of the work of Simon Stålenhag.

Giant Metal Scorpion

Giant Metal Scorpion

The scorpions we encounter here in the U.S. are relatively small, but this oversize metal creature measures 8.25″ long. This awesomely creepy creation is made by Thailand artists Kreatworks using recycled automotive and machine parts. Also, it turns out that there are real scorpions that are almost the same size in South Africa.

Stretch Clock

Stretch Clock

This playful analog timepiece transforms just about any object into a clock. Designed by almost object, the Stretch Clock comprises a large rubber band and a battery-powered clock movement. Simply strap it around an object of your choice, and it turns into a clock. Pre-orders start shipping 4.2021.

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How Drumsticks Are Made

How Drumsticks Are Made

We’ve seen how cymbals are made, now find out how the drumsticks that are used to play them are born. Vic Firth shares footage from inside their factory, where they transform sticks of freshly-cut wood into their premium 5A American Classic sticks, then precision matches them for weight and pitch to ensure perfect pairs.

Building a Lamp from Junk

Building a Lamp from Junk

Maker Laura Kampf has crafted some pretty impressive items over the years. In between larger projects, she decided to do something a little less daunting, and built herself a unique lighting fixture out of found objects and scrap wood. The finished lamp looks like something you’d find in a high-end lighting store.

Lyra Groove Pencils

Lyra Groove Pencils

These special pencils from Germany’s Lyra are designed to help youngsters get a better grip, but we think anyone can benefit from their grooved exterior and anti-roll shape. They come in a variety of styles, including blue, metallic, or slimline with regular leads, as well as colored pencils.

On Bicycle Stand

On Bicycle Stand

Designers Yuma Kano and Yu Miyama came up with this clever way to keep your bicycle standing upright… using a much smaller bike. The 14″ long miniature bike is made from steel, and comes in versions for tires up to 1.6″ or 2″ wide. Unfortunately, importing one via Japan Trend Shop is a costly endeavor.

Penco x TWEMCO Mod Flip Clock

Penco x TWEMCO Mod Flip Clock

Orange is our favorite color, so we’re having a hard time resisting this retro-style alarm clock inspired by the plastic-fantastic styling of the 1960s. Created by Penco and TWEMCO, the battery-powered clock features a mechanical flip display, and a shiny orange ABS plastic case with white-on-orange flip tiles.

Solar Eclipse Music Video

Solar Eclipse Music Video

Back in 2015, Faroe Islands doom metal band Hamferð performed a moody, acoustic version of their track Deyðir varðar while a solar eclipse played out behind their backs. They timed the live performance perfectly and managed to resist the urge to turn around as day turned to night and back. (Thanks Kartin!)

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