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Molded, laminated wood form of T-shaped back, square seat, the sides bending to form four flat legs; front of seat bent down to form short apron; back with small heart-shaped cut-out in center, attached to seat with three metal fasteners. Red-stained finish.
Minimalism in the Playroom
Experimenting with the possibilities of molded plywood during World War II allowed influential design couple Charles and Ray Eames to perfect a cheaper alternative to metal leg splints. The lightweight design proved to be a life-saving innovation for wounded soldiers. At the end of the war, the Eamses redirected their improved understanding of molded plywood...
A group of three children in the center of a grassy lawn with a large shadow of a swastika looming over them. One of the boy stands while holding a toy plane while another in a paper hat holds up an American flag. A girl sits in front of them, holding a doll. In the lower margin is the text, "Don't Let That Shadow Touch Them / Buy WAR BONDS."
Throwing Some Serious Shade
In the midst of World War II, the war effort was reliant upon the purchase of war bonds by the American population. In 1942, the military could not hold off the encroaching armies without the support of Americans. Graphic designer Lawrence Beall Smith dramatically presented the necessity of war bonds to the public by showing...
Child's dress
Fit for a Girl – Or a Boy?
Do you wonder why this early eighteenth-century silk dress is labeled a “child’s dress” and not a “girl’s dress”? You may be surprised to learn that both young girls and boys wore dresses at this time, a practice that actually continued into the first decades of the twentieth century. Before the sixteenth century, European men...
Two library books, Alice in Wonderland and Winnie-The-Pooh
Two Books
The two greatest children’s books of all time. They transcend time and place and age. They are wise and funny. You will be grateful to read them every few years. When you hold a (real) book in your hands, the molecules in your body rejoice. They are flooded with peace and expectation. Nothing else gives that feeling....
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Children’s Room Decoration
The early years of the twentieth century were the high point in children’s room decoration. The Industrial Revolution brought about increased wealth, and children were given their own rooms for the first time. The decoration of a child’s room was supposed to be stimulating and educational, and needed to clearly designate the space as belonging...
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Illustrated Children’s Books from the Cooper-Hewitt Collection
  Over the past several weeks, I explored the Cooper-Hewitt Museum Design Museum Library’s collection of illustrated children’s books as part of the Arts Intern program through Studio in a School. During my time in the Library, I have discovered seemingly endless treasures in the children’s book collection, including a vast range of illustrative styles,...
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Armadillo Suits, Soil Lamps, Folded Bikes, Oh My!
Over the next two weeks on the Cooper-Hewitt Design Blog, students from an interdisciplinary graduate-level course on the Triennial taught by the Triennial curatorial team blog their impressions and inspirations of the current exhibition,‘Why Design Now?’.     This year the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum’s Triennial: Why Design Now? explores topics of sustainable design. Current...
Every Child Should Know About Design
I wish all children in the United States could know about design and have some experience of it before they reach high school age, and that design could be an option in the curriculum during the high school years, so that they could be aware of the value of design thinking in solving problems, or...
Cooper-Hewitt – Pop-up book: The Pop-up Pinocchio
Pop-up book: The Pop-up Pinocchio Originally written as a fairy tale by Carlo Collodi in 1883, the story of Pinocchio comes alive in this colorful pop-up edition created by paper engineer and illustrator Harold Lentz. He illustrated and created several such pop-ups in the 1930s for Blue Ribbon Books and Pleasure Books. Written by Carlo...