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The designer’s thirst-quencher served weekly

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Book Brew

New and upcoming books
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Design and Content

Use the dregs of August to polish off your summer reading list and then make way for Design and Content, out next month from Princeton Architectural Press. It's the long-in-the-making first monograph of graphic design star and Pentagram partner Abbott Miller, whose creative genius manages to look just as stunning when channeled into a museum exhibition, identity design, magazine, iPad app, or, in this case, a 240-page hardcover book that is chock full of inspiring images.

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Hot Shots

Meet some creative people
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This Monster

In a world of slicker-than-slick children's apps (far too many of which seem to involve applying digital makeup to virtual faces), a quirky and creative standout is This Monster. Art director and graphic designer Julianna Goodman created the interactive short story ($1.99 on the App Store) after failing to find a digital version of cherished books from her childhood: handcrafted, thoughtful, and more like a poem than a video game. She filled the app with colorful, touchable-looking materials as well as original music and sound effects to weave a tale that stars color-eating monsters—iPad-savvy mutant progeny of Eric Carle's insatiable analogue caterpillar.

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House Blend

Interesting products
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Postcard Notepads

So many photos. So little time. Grab 24 or 36 of your favorite digital images and transform them into a postcard notepad, a utilitarian take on the photo album. It's one of the DIY papergoods offered by Los Angeles-based Paper Chase Press. Simply head to the website of the family-run press, bindery, and publishing house, select your size and paperstock, and upload away. Your sturdy, chipboard-backed notebook will be on its way to you within a couple of weeks.

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Magic Potion

Cool ideas & design solutions
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In Common Images

Photography meets philanthropy with In Common Images, a photobank with a purpose. Part of the broader Milestones Project, the Littleton, Colorado-based initiative allows photographers to "donate" images that businesses and organizations can license for their own non-commercial use. A portion of the licensing fee (currently $300 per photo) then goes to a nonprofit designated by the photographer. The concept of "uncommon photos for the common good" is catching on fast, with more than 70,000 images uploaded to the site so far.

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Magic Potion

Cool ideas & design solutions
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Found

Prepare to get lost in Found, a curated collection of photography from the National Geographic archives. The mesmerizing Tumblr was launched last year to celebrate the organization’s 125th anniversary and is still going strong with an inspirational mix of world culture and nostalgia. “Some of these photos have never been published before, others were in the magazine years ago but since then have rarely been seen by the public,” note the editors of Found. “Their beauty has been lost to the outside world.” Visit frequently and scroll slowly.

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Mixed Drinks

Must-see places or events
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Savings-o-rama

Some may call our habit of e-sourcing all of our material possessions, foodstuffs and travel arrangements lazy. We prefer efficient. A (literally) saving grace in this Internet shopping obsession—oops, make that endeavor—is Ebates, a sounds-too-good-to-be-true-but-is-really-that-good site that gives you cash back on purchases from more than 1,700 online stores, from Staples and Target to Poppin and TOMS Shoes. It's as simple as signing up, clicking through Ebates when you shop at a participating store and waiting for your quarterly "Big Fat Check" to arrive.

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House Blend

Interesting products
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Magneto

The secret to one of our favorite lamps from the bright lights at Foscarini? Magical magnets. At the heart of designer Giulio Iacchetti's versatile "Magneto" lamp is a small magnetic ball that affords total flexibility and control of the intense light beam, making it an ideal choice for creative workspaces. The magnetic force joins the microphone-like lamp's support rod with a cicular base and an LED, resulting in an effect that is at once elegant (a special channel houses the cable) and mysterious. Choose from table or floor versions of Magneto, available in red or gray.

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Book Brew

New and upcoming books
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Rube Goldberg Redux

Rube Goldberg (1883-1970) is synonymous with his elaborate chain-reaction approach to completing simple tasks, but he was also an established cartoonist, humorist, sculptor, and engineer. The master of contraptions and comics gets his due in the sumptuously illustrated pages of The Art of Rube Goldberg: (A) Inventive (B) Cartoon (C) Genius, published by Abrams ComicArts. Authored by Goldberg's granddaughter, Jennifer George, the book delves into his long off-limits archives to reveal and celebrate the many (moving) parts of Goldberg's astonishing career.

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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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