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The designer’s thirst-quencher served weekly

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Magic Potion

Cool ideas & design solutions
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Everlane

The mark-up on designer clothes is no secret: try eight times what they cost to make. Everlane offers an alternative. The peppy, transparency-obsessed e-tailer aims to challenge the system with its own line of "designer-quality essentials" for men and women—think well-cut tees, sweaters, and a killer weekender bag—at half the typical price. A new collection launches online every month.

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House Blend

Interesting products
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Typestaches

Mr. Didot is quite refined, Mr. Stencil always appears to be caught in an updraft, and Mr. Federal may work as an old-timey sheriff. These are just three of the characters you'll encounter in "A Field Guide to Typestaches," a witty anthropomorphizing of the curly bracket. Designed by Tor Weeks for Minneapolis-based Old Tom Foolery, maker of "unsappy, uncrappy cards and curiosities," the original Typestaches poster is now available as a tote bag or a t-shirt. Consider accessorizing with an angle bracket beard.

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Hot Shots

Meet some creative people
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Swissted

What do punk rock and Swiss modernism have in common? Nothing, unless you count Swissted, an ongoing project of graphic designer Mike Joyce. When not busy running Stereotype Design in New York City, he gives an international typographic style twist to vintage punk, hardcore, new wave, and indie rock show flyers, all of which are posted on his website and available to purchase in the form of prints and iPhone cases. "Each design is set in lowercase Berthold Akzidenz-Grotesk Medium—not Helvetica," notes Joyce, a stickler for historical accuracy. "Every single one of these shows actually happened."

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Book Brew

New and upcoming books
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Start Here

'Tis the season for procrastination. Buck the trend beginning this very summer Friday with Lee Crutchley's The Art of Getting Started (Perigee). Drawing upon his own tricks for getting over creative blocks, the illustrator has created a hands-on guide studded with inspirational prompts (What will your business card look like in five perfect years?), activities (Draw your favorite pen using your favorite pen), and challenges (Take a "selfie" without showing yourself) that help to shift your perspective in new and surprising ways.

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Kool Ade

Old school, retro picks
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Out of Print

Show the world that you know good design and great literature with the help of Out of Print, which sells t-shirts, tote bags, and more printed with iconic and often out of print book covers. "We work closely with artists, authors, and publishers to license the content that ends up in our collections," note the founders, who are currently offering wearable versions of American Lit. syllabus standbys such as Catcher in the Rye, The Great Gatsby, Invisible Man, and Of Mice and Men. For each product sold, one book is donated to a community in need.

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Magic Potion

Cool ideas & design solutions
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Tunepics

Just when you thought you had squeezed every last morsel of enhanced, shared, and tagged pleasure out of your digital photos comes Tunepics, a sharp-looking app (free to download from Apple's app store) that makes it possible to give each of your images its own soundtrack. The creators, on a mission to unite music and images, are playing up the emotional dimension with colorful mood charts (feeling blue or just Rhapsody in Blue?) and image filters, so you can match the music to the photo or vice-versa.

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Magic Potion

Cool ideas & design solutions
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DIY-Wear

What began as Ethan Lipsitz's college hobby of tweaking his friends' hoodie sweatshirts is now a burgeoning fashion company with a DIY twist. Los Angeles-based Apliiq ("It rhymes with unique and freak," advise Lipsitz and his team) collects rare, deadstock and recognizable textiles and applies them to everyday garments (think crying-out-for-customization American Apparel tees). The website offers an ever-changing assortment of limited-edition products and a fabric library that makes for a dizzying array of possible color and texture combinations.

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House Blend

Interesting products
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Small World

The World Cup is, alas, over, but the spirit of international competition lives on in this deck of national flag playing cards from the design champions at IDEA International ($12.00 at neo-utility's online shop). Featuring 52 flags and a jet-setting bellboy joker, this durable plastic deck is bound to last 'til Russia 2018.

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Book Brew

New and upcoming books
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Digital Dieter Rams

Just in time for vacation reading, Sophie Lovell's Dieter Rams: As Little Design As Possible (Phaidon) is making its debut in digital form. The iBooks edition of the best-selling hardcover will be available beginning Tuesday, July 15. Reformatted for iPad, the comprehensive monograph delves into the life, work, and succinct philosophy of the famed product designer, now 82, whose wildly influential designs for the likes of Braun and Vitsoe continue to sell briskly worldwide. Tap and scroll your way through many of Rams' sketches and prototypes, as well as an interactive timeline, essays, and a foreword by Apple design guru and consummate Rams fan Jonathan Ive.

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Kool Ade

Old school, retro picks
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Good Idea

Design is a good idea. This simple truism, printed on a tomato red mousepad, was an unlikely hit for the type maestros at Berkeley-based Emigre, and demand for the item quickly outstripped supply. Fast forward a few years—to today—and they've brought back the design-boosting desk brightener, topped with spill-proof Lexan to ensure that it stays bright and ready to spur you to new creative heights.

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