Do It Yourself

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Cooper-Hewitt: Designapalooza
Shoshana Berger and Grace Hawthorne, authors of Readymade: How to Make (Almost) Everything: A Do-It-Yourself Primer and Ellen Lupton, author of D.I.Y.: Design It Yourself lead a day-long celebration of “DIY” design, showing participants how to translate everyday materials into exciting new objects.
Is D.I.Y. Bad for Design?
Viriginia Postrel has a piece on D.I.Y. design in the March/April issue of Print magazine. Postrel is a professional writer, not a designer, whose crossover book The Substance of Style helped convince people in business and cultural institutions that design has something to offer the economy. Her book was directed not at designers, but at...
Are Designers the Enemies of Design?
Design writer Bruce Nussbaum delivered a speech at Parsons a few weeks ago whose controversial refrain was “designers suck.” Read the speech on his Business Week blog. Nussbaum claims that designers are slow to embrace the democratization of design. They still want to keep the “sandbox” to themselves, rather than inviting their clients, users, and...
Indie Publishing
One of the themes running through Design Life Now is the opening up of media to everyday citizens. There’s been an explosion of “social media”—Web sites that allow people to build communities and talk with each other on-line. (Blogs like this are one example.) This communications revolution is affecting print as well digital media. Fueled...
Social Life
Many people complain that technology is isolating people from their fellow humans. I disagree. E-mail, cell phones, FedEx, Blackberries, and other systems are keeping people more in touch than ever. Indeed, many of us are expected to be “reachable” 24/7. One of the themes of Design Life Now is how design brings people together, through...
Discipline Convergence
Over the last three years, I have been seeing more convergence between various design disciplines. ReadyMade, Make, and Howtoons are using graphic design to communicate new do-it-yourself design philosophies. Companies like Blik are creating products that are graphics (and graphics that are products). Designers are producing tools and materials as well as end products. Casey...