Gold Rush, Cowboy Coffee & Wabi Sabi

Wonders in unlikely places.

DESIGNS TO HUDDLE WITH around the campfire: the Cowboy Coffee Kettle for open-flame brewing, by Umbra Shift, comes in sturdy black or white enameled steel with beech wood handles and trivet. $90. umbrashift.com

Japanese designer Naoto Fukasawa’s sensuous stainless-steel Cha Tea Kettle for Alessi — with an infusion basket, sugar and creamer bowls (not shown) and a handle of thermoplastic resin — brings the Zen ritual of tea making from stovetop to table. $200 at Alessi, San Francisco. alessi.com

For campfire party seating, Blu Dot’s hexagonal Hecks ottoman (which can be capped with a powder-coated steel serving tray) comes in eight colors of soft felted wool-blend upholstery. $229 each; $69 for the tray, at Blu Dot in San Francisco. bludot.com


DESIGNER WARREN PLATNER’S curvaceous lounge chair and ottoman offered a startling and fresh counterpoint to modernism’s rectilinear forms in 1966. Fifty years later, thanks to new technology, the iconic design (usually made of nickel or bronze-plated steel wires that provided both structure and decoration) is for the first time being celebrated with a new electroplated version in 18-karat gold. About $5,779 for the chair and $2,650 for the ottoman through Zinc Details and Arkitektura in San Francisco and 2 Modern in Mill Valley. zincdetails.com, arksf.com, 2modern.com


GUIDE DOGS FOR THE BLIND, where sight-impaired people learn to partner with trained guide dogs, has a new San Rafael campus designed by Ted Arleo of Studio Bondy. Its 14 wood-sided short-term residences, with zinc-clad roofs and deep overhangs fitted with glass solar panels, are clustered around a central courtyard. guidedogs.com

Photo: Ken Gutmaker

WABI-SABI FURTHER THOUGHTS (Imperfect Publishing) is a sequel to Point Reyes author Leonard Koren’s classic Wabi-Sabi: for Artists, Designers, Poets & Philosophers, which described “the beauty of things imperfect.” According to Koren, his new book aims to dispel “misconceptions about wabi-sabi’s actual place in Japanese history.” $16

TILE MAKES THE ROOM: GOOD DESIGN FROM HEATH CERAMICS (Ten Speed Press) is a declarative home design book with useful tips on using tile as well as insights into tile-making by Sausalito’s Heath Ceramics owners, Robin Petravic and Catherine Bailey. $40

THE MONOCLE GUIDE TO COSY HOMES (Gestalten), a lavish photo book by writers for Monocle magazine, its founder Tyler Brûlé, and international design theorists like Ilse Crawford, is filled with “home truths” about what makes a well-designed house a home. $60


COLORFUL GLASSYBABY HANDBLOWN VOTIVE-HOLDERS and tumblers were inspired by Seattle’s Lee Rhodes’ battle against cancer, which she won — in part, the mother of three believes, due to the healing power of a flickering tea light in a glass vessel at her bedside. Recovered, in 1998 she launched glassybaby, which now donates a percentage of profits to cancer patients. Glassybaby stores in the Bay Area include a new “hot shop” in Berkeley where you can watch artisans shape molten glass into sturdy votive holders. $44 each. glassybaby.com

Photos: Holders by Aubrie Pick; Classblower by Tim Coy

MATT BEAR’S HANDMADE white-oak and gunmetal-patinated-steel worktable, bolted to the floor of co-creator Sam Hamilton’s San Francisco kitchenware store MARCH, is eminently customizable. It can be narrow or wide, high or low. Diners and chefs can use it, and there’s room for kitchen tools and utensils in saddle leather caddies, slatted shelves, and wood and zinc storage bins. MARCH in San Francisco; prices start at about $15,000. marchsf.com


BRIGHT ON PRESIDIO, an exciting new lighting store in San Francisco’s burgeoning Sacramento shopping district, has works from Parisian industrial designer Etienne Gounot and Eric Jähnke’s Ozone brand among its many exclusive lines. The minimal form of the Ozone Untitled T chandelier is composed of LED lights set into a slender brass and aluminum armature. Prices vary for mirror nickel, bronze or gunmetal finishes. brightonpresidio.com

Categories: Design Spot