Jul 31, 2014

JOIN THE REVOLUTION: 5 cities. 5 bikes. One Urban Cycling Movement.

By Courtney Ferris

Industry & Ti-Cycles, collaborors on SOLID, had plenty of pieces and parts spread out, showcasing the the design and inspiration of their competition entry.  

The sands are shifting when it comes to the way people move around urban environments. With bikes lanes, cycle tracks, and painted bike boxes popping up in cities across the Northwest, cycling is becoming a more viable transportation option. Given the technology-driven climate we live in today, it’s no surprise that ground-up innovation by creative entrepreneurs, including new technologies like 3-D printing, is allowing people to more easily design and create the products they want to use and see—including the centuries-old, man-powered bicycle.

What’s your favorite? Cycling cities from throughout the country have submitted their idea of the perfect urban commuter. Clockwise from left:  Chicago; San Francisco; New York; Portland; Seattle

From racers and cruisers to mountain bikes and tandems, specialty bikes are nothing new. But not all of them fit the needs of the everyday urban commuter—a rapidly growing population of bike purchasers. Cue the Oregon Manifest’s The Bike Design Project. Building off the momentum and popularity of cycling in some of America’s most design-savvy cities—Portland, Seattle, San Francisco, New York, and Chicago—Oregon Manifest has paired some of the best and brightest creative agencies with local bicycle craftsmen to let loose a firestorm of ideas and innovations to redesign urban mobility and the cycling experience.

"Oregon Manifest's Bike Design Project is an independent innovation platform for the urban utility bike—the bike for the everyday rider,” says Shannon Holt, creator of The Bike Design Project.  “We think the everyday ride is the most important one, yet this is not yet reflected on the retail floor. By bringing together high-level design firms and deeply talented bike craftsmen, we aim to redefine the category of Transport Bike from the ground up, creating a better product for a better experience."

Each city unveiled of their bike on the same night, and large banners gave everyone a chance to size up the competition.   

Industry and TiCycle’s process work boasts influences from throughout Portland and beyond, and showcased the sketches and drawings that helped to develop the final product. 

SOLIDPDX was on view in Portland so event attendees could get an up-close look at its seamless welds and carefully crafted details. 

The final concepts and designs were recently unveiled in each city on the same night, and GRAY was able to catch the Portland party. On display was the SOLIDPDX, a sleek 3D-printed titanium bike designed by local creative agency Industry, and crafted by custom bike frame shop Ti-Cycles.

A modern machine, customized to the hilt, this bike oozes Portland style, its design influenced by local icons such as Nike’s Tinker Hatfield and former Portland mayor Sam Adams (who also made an appearance at the unveiling). The event was held at Pacific Northwest College of Art, and the room was decked with tables displaying the team’s inspiration, sketches, tests, and prototypes.  A large projector and multiple iPads gave people a glimpse into the creation process and a chance to see the final product in action around the city.

The competition’s design requirements were in-depth and extensive: Bikes had to possess the versatility that a city bike demands—the ability to traverse both wet and dry asphalt, gravel, and terrain changes—as well as the ability to store everything from a bag of groceries to a daypack. The bikes that emerged from the competition aren’t just creating a way of getting around; they are reacting to a new urban lifestyle, one that demands the introduction of a functional heirloom product.

Now that the finished bikes have hit the internet, you can vote for the design you most covet (or perhaps the city you love the most). The winner will be produced by Fuji bikes in the coming months. Added to the pot is the chance for voters to actually win the winning bike—and all the bragging rights of owning one of these hot commodities.
Take a gander at these beauties, get inspired, vote, then jump on your own bike and ride around, because as Oregon Manifest explains, the next two-wheeled revolution is going to be born on the streets and spread by the urban rider.

Voting ends August 3 at noon. Click here to cast your vote.

"To disrupt any category you need friction. Innovation hurts—tension is an important part of the process. We believe the best idea needs to be stress-tested and the process, iterative. Bringing together Ti Cycles’ craftsman mentality with Industry’s modern and agile approach was the perfect marriage. We aligned on pushing the boundaries early on, yet respected each other’s expertise. At the end of the day, it was about creating a meaningful (and winning) result—together.” —Garett Stenson, Industry

Jul 30, 2014

Room of the Week: Angela Robinson Interior Design

Category: Bedroom
Designer: Angela Robinson, Angela Robinson Interior Design
Location: Vancouver

Goal: A young couple wanted a fresh, boutique-hotel look for their laneway home in Vancouver. 

Inspiration: “Initially, the inspiration was based on our research of boutique hotel spaces,” says interior designer Angela Robinson. “The mix of bold and neutral with textural accents (leather, fur, metal, etc.). Once we found the wallpaper [a blue-and-white print by Wallquest, sourced through Crown Wallpaper] the design was launched. We kept the other elements in the room fairly neutral to balance the bold pattern.” 

Breakdown: The blue-and-white wallpaper from Wallquest accentuates the unique shape of the room, and to keep the space from becoming visually overwhelming, Robinson chose the Simple Bed Frame from West Elm, covering it in HomeSense Luxe Habitat linens. A functional and stylish leather chair from Metropolitan Home sits in the corner, and two Chintz& Co. lights flank the bed and add a hint of luxury.

Tips to Get the Look: “The key to creating a space like this is to look for one big, bold statement, whether it’s a vibrant wallpaper or fabric and balance it out with soft, complementary neutrals for the rest of the space,” Robinson notes. “In this case, the neutrals we used (caramel, white, black, and oatmeal) allow the wallpaper to be the focus, but have enough contrast to ensure they don't fade away. The furniture styles were kept simple, and accessories to a minimum as well, so that nothing feels like it’s competing for visual attention.”

Jul 28, 2014

GRAY Collaborations: GRAY Magazine Extō

We are excited to introduce our GRAY product collaboration with Conway Electric.

The GRAY Magazine Extō is a high-end, American-made outlet and extension cord designed by Conway Electric's founder Kevin Faul and customized by us. It will debut in our August/September issue and features a custom-designed solstice blue/natural stripe cord & dove gray housing with cork inlets. $1 from the sale of each goes to the non-profit Homeless in Seattle, providing resources to help get folks back on their feet. Tell us what you think and pick up a copy of GRAY on shelves next week; available at Conway Electric retailers everywhere.

Image by Amanda Ringstad

Jul 25, 2014

Get This: Bikes Made Here

Get outside! This is the best time of year for the Pacific Northwest, the time that people in every other part of the country envy (or would envy, if they knew). What better way to get out than to ride a bicycle around town? Come along for a ride with us as we survey our favorite locally made wheels.

2013 Kinn Cascade Flyer, $2,350, by Kinn, Portland

Cascade, $499-$799, by Traitor Cycles, Seattle

Rodriguez Classic Custom Tandem Bicycles, from $4,699, by Rodriguez in Seattle

Jul 23, 2014

Party Pages: WINTR Open House

Last week a large swathe of the Seattle design community gathered at WINTR, a local digital creative company in Fremont, for their summer open house. Stylish guests sipped on Hillard's beer, mingled at the tie dye station, and listened to tunes from Tilson and Deep Sea Diver. It was WINTR's party, but the vibe was decidedly summer chic.

 Brooke Baker of WINTR enjoying a Hillard's beer.

Party goers gathered in WINTR's lofty industrial office located in Seattle's Fremont neighborhood.

Bartender Jay Kuehner serving up punch.
Guests enjoyed popsicles as part of the night's tropical theme. 

Kyla Fairchild of No Depression Festival with Annie Pardo of WINTR.

Jessica Dobson, singer in Deep Sea Diver, who played later in the night.

The tie dye station out on the sidewalk.
Graphic designer Brianna Cortez and Brooke Baker of WINTR show off their finished tie dyed shirts.

A party guest hangs out with Jessica Carter of Love City Love and Andy Whitcomb of Brackish.

The night drew a very fashionable crowd.

Keisha Harris of Digital Kitchen
More stylish party goers including Taylor Winters.

Artfully planted pots in the WINTR office.

Popsicles....need we say more?

Natalie Hyde, interior designer at GGLO, and her boyfriend Adam Merkl of HIlliard's.

Catleah Cunanan of Savory Pacific, GRAY editor Rachel Gallaher, and Jenny Hudak Klimenkoff of {far4} Events.
Rapper Tilson jumped into the loft to perform a song.

Photographer Charlie Schuck (middle) and Ben Winters of WINTR.

All photos taken by Genevieve Pierson

Room of the Week: Kyla Bidgood, Kyla Bidgood Interior Design

Photos by Jen Steele Photography

Category: Living Room
Designer: Kyla Bidgood, Kyla Bidgood Interior Design
Location: Vancouver

Goal: To reflect the homeowners’ friendly, energetic personalities and infuse a bold dose of color and pattern into a brand-new, boring-beige home.

Inspiration: The clients. “As co-owner of WildPlay Elements Park, Gord takes his pleasure very seriously,” says interior designer Kyla Bidgood. “He's a savvy business man, avid outdoorsman, and one of those all-around genuine nice guys. And Jay is a hard-working, mountain-biking firecracker with a love of quirky art, good wine, and a good laugh. These people were speaking my language when they told me they wanted their space to be vibrant and modern with a little quirk.”

Breakdown: Bidgood used her design savvy to turn a standard beige house into a modern, personality-filled open space. Two Camerich sofas from Only Human sit on either side of a three-piece custom-designed walnut coffee table from Ian Erdmann of Woodshop 506. The HansWegner Teddy Bear chairs are vintage—salvaged from the client’s childhood family cabin—but Bidgood reupholstered them with a retro-inspired fabric.

Tips to Get the Look: Bidgood recommends keeping the larger furniture pieces neutral and going with bolder accents. She notes that “My no-fail recipe for mixing color and pattern is thus: a large-scale graphic on the area rug; heavy, textured or bold-colored accent furniture; a mix of [sizes] on the pillows; and a shot of vintage to keep it from looking too modern.”

Jul 21, 2014

Open Call for Designers: Seattle Design Festival SHOWCASE 14 Gallery + Pop-Up Shop


An exciting opportunity to submit your designs for the 2014 Seattle Design Festival's 
SHOWCASE 14: Gallery + Pop-up Shop
Curated by a jury* of local designers, SHOWCASE 14 is a combination of a Gallery, a new installation component to the festival, and the yearly Pop-Up Shop. We have arranged for a large showcase space where the design community can present ideas, concepts, prototypes, and finished products that express, provoke and align with the festival’s broad theme of 'Design in Motion.'

We would like to invite all who are practicing design in all medias from architecture to furniture, products to toys plus interactive and graphic design, film and video design. The goal of SHOWCASE 14 is to spotlight and draw attention to the vibrant range of design being practiced in the Pacific Northwest.

See the Call for Entries for further information + submission details

Monday, August 4th at 12 midnight (PST)

* Submissions will be chosen by the following SHOWCASE 14 Jury:April Bottman-Haase, Co-founder of Efikio
Dawn Fischer, owner at ID Project
Rachel Gallaher, editor of Gray Magazine
Ellie Kemery, Co-founder and Strategist at MakerHaus
Thomas Lehmanm, founding partner Idiom+
Kate Murphy, designer at Perkins+Will
Charlie Schuck, photographer at Charlie Schuck, founder of Object
Rysia Suchecka, partner at NNBJ
George Suyama, FAIA Principal, Suyama Peterson Deguchi Architects

QUESTIONS? Please contact Ellie Kemery at ellie@makerhaus.com