Sunday, December 19, 2010

Go Big or Go Dome

What better way to celebrate the holidays (and a very rainy week here in Los Angeles) than with a geodesic gingerbread house. About 10" in diameter, our gingerbread dome is made of hexagons, pentagons, and a ridiculous amount of royal icing (which may sound fancy, but it's just a mixture of powdered sugar and egg whites).  We included a teepee like the one we have in our backyard, and a gingerbread SR Outdoor Table Set. What can we say, we get a little intense with our holiday edible house construction.

If you're making you own gingerbread house this season, we highly recommend going to a Japanese supermarket to get some seriously amazing construction accoutrements, including chocolate covered tree stumps, bamboo shoots, and mushrooms, along with a variety of pocky pretzels that make excellent edible firewood.

More pics of our SR Geodesic Gingerbread Dome, along with an A-Frame we also made, are on our flickr feed.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

SR Side Table Prototype

We're slowly finding time to work on projects for our headquarters.  Last month, we rolled up our sleeves and re-upholstered some old chairs.  This month, we finally got around to designing and building a couple of bedside tables. It may be a sneak peak of our next product!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

XANADU at Specific Merchandise

The magical world of XANADU is right here in Los Angeles!  The holiday show at Specific Merchandise brings together nearly 50 designers and artists for the largest exhibit yet at the gallery storefront.  Curator and owner Brooks Hudson Thomas has done an amazing job bringing together so many talented designers for the show.  The space looks amazing, and we hope all of our friends in Los Angeles have a chance to check it out.

We are super excited that our entire line of Scout Regalia products is part of this show (!!!).  To display our SR Wall Pockets, we built a 15' tall "pennant" with over 200 hanging wall pockets.  In addition,  the show includes the SR Outdoor Table Set, garden kits, and our latest product, the SR Bookcase.  The show also features work from our friends at design,bitches, todosomething, Von Tundra, WELCOME, Winter Session, artist Morgan Maclean, and some amazing handmade shoes by Dragan Mrdja.

More information about the show is available here, and more pics of the installation of the wall pocket pennant are on our flickr feed.

Specific Merchandise
7374 Beverly Blvd
Through December 24th

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Re-Upholstering an Old Chair

We've been meaning to upgrade our dining room chairs for a while now, and finally got around to it this past month.  We had a couple of strict and challenging criteria for the chairs, the first being that they had to look great, and the second being that it had to cost less than $50/chair.  Impossible?

To begin with, we knew we had to find chairs that we could repair/refinish to stay within our budget.  Thankfully, we live near of one of the best second hand stores ever, across the bridge in Lincoln Heights over at Saint Vincent de Paul.  We found a couple of old chairs (made in NY) with good bones and lines for $20/chair.  It was a steal, but there was still some work that needed to be done, primarily reupholstering the seat and replacing the deteriorating foam.  After scouring the fabric district in Downtown LA, we found some great tweed over at Mood Fabrics, along with some dense upholstery foam.

If you've never reupholstered a chair, its shockingly simple, and there are a ton of resources online including a really helpful video by ReadyMade Magazine.  With a few cuts of fabric and some upholstery staples, we were done in no time.  Final tally: $45/chair.  Success!

More pics of the project on our flickr page.

Monday, October 11, 2010

SR Bookcase and More at High Desert Test Sites

The SR Bookcase travelled out to Joshua Tree this past weekend to be part of the Specific Apartment installation at the High Desert Test Sites Headquarters in Downtown Joshua Tree.  We were thrilled to be part of the show with so many talented designers and artists.  We've spent plenty of time in Joshua Tree National Park but not a lot of time in Downtown JT, so it was a real treat to check out all the nice little stores and restaurants including the Mt. Fuji General Store and Crossroads Cafe.

The weekend was full of events featuring the work of Portland based design trio Von Tundra.  Part of the weekend included brunch at A-Z West on tables and chairs designed and built by Von Tundra from wood pallets, along with a workshop to design/build a shade canopy from a collection of colorful vintage fabrics.  We love the work they are up to and the ethos by which they run their business.  Check out more of Von Tundra's work on their website, and in person starting this weekend at the Specific Merchandise storefront in Los Angeles, through November 6th.

More pics from our weekend in Joshua Tree are on our flickr page.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Heirloom Beans from Rancho Gordo

Even if we consider ourselves fairly adept at growing vegetables in our SR Raised Gardens and SR Patio Gardens, there will always be things that are best left for the professionals.  Heirloom beans definitely falls into this category.

We recently discovered the motherlode of fresh heirloom beans from Rancho Gordo, based out of Napa California.  Their vast selection of beans is incredible, showcasing a variety of colors, flavors, and sizes that will surely change your ideas about plain ole beans.  All of their beans are grown in small quantities to ensure quality, and are picked fresh within 2 years, making them taste like no other bean you've ever eaten. The beans you get from the grocery have generally been shelved for up to 10 years- yikes! Thomas Keller of French Laundry is a fan, and I love to think that he and I now source our beans from the same place.  The Santa Maria Pinquitos are my favorite so far, but I'm super excited to try the Vaqueros and Rio Zapes.  Bon Apetit!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Made to Order Production Tags

We're always looking for ways to communicate information about our products through interesting, clear, and well designed means.  In addition to product postcards, we now have Production Tags for our made to order furniture, including the latest release of our SR Bookcase.

The Production Tags allow us to provide customers with some information about their made to order Scout Regalia piece, and also helps us keep track of important information including custom color choices and finishes.  Be on the lookout for these tags with your SR Outdoor Table Set and SR Bookcase orders!

Friday, September 17, 2010

SR Bookcase at Specific Merchandise

We are so excited to debut the SR Bookcase, which is the latest addition to our catalogue of products and our first venture into indoor furniture.  The SR Bookcase is currently part of "Autumn Suite", the fall show at Specific Merchandise, and is available through the Specific Merchandise online store on 1st Dibs.

Made of domestic hardwood and handcrafted in Los Angeles, the SR Bookcase is made to order and available as a 1, 2 or 3 bay system.  Each bookcase is hand finished with low gloss, non toxic wood sealer and paints in your choice of 210 custom colors.  Standing 7'-8" tall, the SR Bookcase will surely be a signature piece in any living space or office.

Check out the SR Bookcase in person over at Specific Merchandise through October 2nd.  Lots of amazing new work from a variety of talented designers on display as well!

Sept 4- Oct 2
Specific Merchandise
7374 Beverly Blvd

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Ticking Apron from Winter Session

Our friends over at Winter Session recently launched a series of sewn products all designed and hand made in Chicago.  We love the work they make, and their impeccable attention to every stitching detail is outstanding.

We were especially fond of their Ticking Apron, a work apron that is durable, functional, and of course timelessly good looking.  Each apron is custom made to suit your needs, whether you're a leftie or rightie, or prefer to access your pencils and tools in one or multiple pockets.  The neck strap is adjustable so you can really fit your apron as you like it.  The apron was perfect this weekend as we worked on the finishing details of the SR Bookcase, which will be featured in the upcoming Fall show "Autumn Suite" over at Specific Merchandise.

You can find out more about the Ticking Apron and their other products on their website.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

A Sneak Peek of our Fall Release

Here's a sneak peak at what we've been up to over at Scout Regalia headquarters as we gear up to release our first piece of indoor furniture this fall- The SR Bookcase.  We're still fine tuning the details of the piece, and most recently had a fun but challenging decision to make about the type of pulls we'll be using for the lower cabinets of the bookcase.

Cabinet pulls seem to ignite many heated debates amongst designers.  Most modern cabinet designs have some sort of sleek and minimal stainless steel pull that seems to favor thin lines over usability.  Sometimes, the pull completely disappears with a concealed magnetic push latch.

We've made a conscious decision to embrace the function and aesthetics of wood knobs for the cabinets of our bookcase.  There's something both timeless and simple about using a wood knob that seems fitting for the aesthetic and ethos of the bookcase in particular and our office as a whole.  A lot of people ask us what "Scout Regalia" means.  The short answer is that it can be translated as "humble ornament"- an homage to finding the splendor in something austere and simple.  We think the knobs are a good representation of that.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

SR Cutsheet Project 01: Planting Table

We are excited to announce the first of the SR Cutsheet Projects, a series of free instruction sheets created to help people build simple projects for their home.

The first of these projects is the SR Planting Table, which you may have seen in our blog post a few weeks ago about our growing collection of bonsai.  This outdoor plant stand is easy to build, requiring just a few tools and some inexpensive materials.  This table is great for all sorts of potted plants and we've found it to be invaluable in our garden.

We hope that the SR Cutsheet Project will help connect people to the design process and how things are made.  The Cutsheet Project is a way to bring well designed, functional objects to the home in an inexpensive way that allows you to build things for yourself.

You can download the cutsheet for the Planting Table for free on our website, or click on the link below. More projects will be added in the future, so stay tuned.

SR Planting Table

Friday, July 30, 2010

Field Research: San Gorgonio Mountain

Living in Los Angeles, we are fortunate to be within a 2 hour drive to experience the sea, the desert, the mountains, and everything in between.  We recently took advantage of our geography and climbed the highest peak in Southern California, San Gorgonio Mountain in the San Bernardino Mountains.

At an elevation of 11,500 feet, San Gorgonio isn't the highest of peaks, but it's still pretty impressive to look across an endless horizon of sky while breathing some noticeably thin air.  It's a hike that can be done in one (long) day with a light pack, but we opted to spend the weekend up there and camp near the summit at the Dry Lake View campsite.

It's a must-do adventure for Southern Californians who want to get out of town and breath some fresh mountain air.  Permits, which are free, are required for all day hikes and overnight campsites, and the hardworking rangers will occasionally ask to see your permits. Permits can be attained here, and more pics of the hike are on our flickr page.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Eena Canvas Bags, Made in Portland OR

Whenever possible, we try and support companies that still make high quality products here in the States.  It's an ethos that we follow ourselves, utilizing local fabricators and manufacturers.   It's easy to forget that every object, and every piece of clothing or furniture, has the work of real people behind it.  Purchasing products with the knowledge that you are making a decision about what you support is something to keep in mind every now and then.

We recently had the need for a simple but outstanding canvas bag to haul small objects and such around town.  The Eena bag from Beckel Canvas Products was exactly what we were looking for.  Based out of Portland Oregon, Beckel has been producing a variety of high quality canvas products for over 40 years, and the Eena bag is the perfect mix of timeless design and heavy duty workmanship.

You can find the bag at Canoe, either online or in their store in Portland OR.  And for a very well curated list of American made products, check out The American List over at one of our favorite blogs, A Continuous Lean.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

SR Patio Gardens at Specific Merchandise

We are super excited to be part of D'ARK GARDEN, the summer group show over at Specific Merchandise, the new gallery/store on Beverly Boulevard.  We are thrilled to be part of the show with so many talented young designers, including LA artists D'ARK who created the two beds in the space, Woolly Pockets with their plant chandeliers, seedbomb vending machines by Common Studio, and a few beautiful chairs designed and fabricated by todosomething.  This and so much more will be on display through July 31st.

For the group show, we built and planted two SR Patio Gardens- one with a forest ecology and the other with a desertscape. We used un-planed reclaimed redwood from The Reclaimer, which we wrote about a few weeks ago.  The scapes are already taking on a life of their own, with new floral shoots coming out of the succulents in the dryscape, and mushrooms popping out of the groundcover in the forest ecology.  We're looking forward to seeing these ecologies become more wild and feral as the weeks pass.

July 10- July 31
Specific Merchandise
7374 Beverly Blvd

Monday, June 28, 2010

Dingbat Terrarium

We're happy to announce that our entry for the Dingbat 2.0 design competition sponsored by the Los Angeles Forum for Architecture and Urban Design just won an Honorable Mention Award!  The design competition challenged designers to re-think the "dingbat" style apartments popularized in the mid 50's-70's.  Dingbats are typical Los Angeles apartment complexes, usually 2 or 3 story stucco boxes with unique facades and covered parking in the front.

"Dingbat Terrarium" is a new vision for multifamily housing in Los Angeles that embraces the utilitarian features of classic dingbats, while proposing creative solutions for a more livable model of rental housing in the city.  With three housing models suited for families, workers, and students, "Dingbat Terrarium" seeks to improve the quality of life for residents at both the urban and residential scales. The title comes from the idea that each unit has a "terrarium" in the living room to bring light and curated views into the space.  It's our response to the misdirected obsession with outward views no matter what's on the other side of the window.

We're 4/4 in winning Honorable Mentions for competition entries. Always a bridesmaid never a bride.  But we're realizing that maybe honorable mentions are just a sign that we don't necessarily make architecture for architects, but architecture for people.  And we'll take that any day.

You can download our entry on our website, and check out the rest of the winners on the LA Forum site.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Field Research: Costanoa Lodge

We recently went up north to Pescadero California for a short weekend escape from LA. We stumbled upon a gem of a place to stay called Costanoa, which offers a variety of accommodations ranging from posh suites in their lodge, to awesome canvas cabins on wood platforms. You can also bring your own tent and just camp outside at the nicest KOA site we have ever seen. The amenities are incredible: who doesn't enjoy a hike or horse ride through acres of trails, followed by a cedar-clad dry sauna, topped off by a hot outdoor shower?

There are endless acres of hiking trails on site, and the grounds are right by the ocean. Southern California beaches generally don't have native vegetation leading up to the water, most just having a massive parking lot or some sort of development on the shoreline. It was remarkable to see how a protected shoreline could become such a diverse ecosystem.

Costanoa is a responsible environmental steward, and you can read more about their efforts for sustainability and ecological preservation on their website. It's only about an hour south of San Francisco, and a good 6 hours from LA, but well worth the trip.

More pics of our field research adventure can be found on our flickr page.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Why Revit When You Can Rivet?

Introducing our new favorite office tool: The Paper Riveter!  When we first saw this online, we immediately knew that the 'ole stapler needed to be replaced by this awesome tool.  It first punches a hole through the stack of paper and then rivets them together. We are currently resisting the urge to rivet everything (up to 1/8" thick) in sight.  You can find one for yourself at Garrett Wade, our new favorite tool site that seems to have read our minds about what we like and need here at headquarters.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Reclaimed Lumber in LA

We recently went back to The Reclaimer to check out some stock for an upcoming project.  The lumber yard in Sylmar is a great source for reclaimed wood here in LA.  We scourced some redwood from them a few months ago when we built the planters for The Residences at the W Hollywood.

This time around, there was some amazing live edge burnt oak that they had recovered, along with some huge pieces of doug fir.  We ended up getting a few pieces of reclaimed redwood, un-planed this time, that we'll be using for an upcoming exhibit that we will be part of at Specific Merchandise in July.  We'll keep you posted!

Monday, May 31, 2010

Agave or Giant Asparagus?

We were really surprised to see this giant asparagus-like bloom from one of our agave plants that seemed to have spouted overnight.  At about 20 feet high, this giant sprout marks the end of this plant's life. Agave plants like this are also called "century plants", because of the time it takes for the plant to reach this stage of bloom.  I doubt this one is that old, but it's pretty fascinating to see how such a drought resistant plant can grow such a crazy looking bloom.

We've found a few great places in and around LA that have a wonderful selection of native plants and succulents.  Sunset Nursery has an extensive selection of succulents and other plants, and Everything Gardens in Atwater Village has a diverse garden full of various native plants.  Also on the Eastside is Darling's Flowers, which you've probably seen from the 101 freeway.  And while we have yet to visit this place, California Nursery Specialties in the Valley seems like an amazing place to find both cacti and giant dinosaur lawn ornaments.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Motley Hue

The SR Outdoor Table Set comes in a rainbow of 210 bright enamel color options. We've been working directly with our clients in creating SR Outdoor Table Sets to their specific color choices. What a wonderful and eclectic set of colors we've seen come through the office/shop! We love to see these tables and benches come out in colors we would never have imagined, and they all look wonderful and unique in their own way. And it's great knowing that these table sets are going to homes that appreciate style, color, and timeless design. Here's a peek at the menagerie of colorful SR Outdoor Table Sets we've recently built.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Bonsai Inspiration

In addition to growing an edible garden, we are constantly working on our collection of bonsai.  Tending to bonsai is a skill that is honed over years of experience, but it's also something that is pretty accessible to anybody who is interested in cultivating miniature trees. We've amassed a small collection of bonsai including (from left) an Elm, Long Needle Juniper, Pomegranate, and a Trident Maple.  It's pretty amazing to see and tend to miniature versions of huge tree species.

Our miniature trees are resting on a bonsai table that we made from redwood a couple of years ago.  We love the way redwood ages into a beautiful grey patina.  You can also see the natural aging of redwood on our SR Outdoor Table Set that we have in our home office backyard.

For those interested in bonsai, a great place to start is Chikogu-en Bonsai Nursery in Gardena, CA.  The family run shop also has bonsai classes once a month and a really great selection of pots and tools.  Another great resource is Yamaguchi Bonsai Nursery in West Los Angeles, which has a big selection of bonsai alongside other plants as well.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

SR Patio Gardens at The Residences at The W Hollywood

Photo: Tim Street-Porter

Photo: Mike Kershner

We are very excited to announce that the SR Patio Gardens are now part of the Eco Residence, GREEN + VINE at The Residences at The W Hollywood. You'll find three of the SR Patio Gardens on the lovely terrace overlooking Hollywood and Vine in the new "Eco Unit" that is part of the the new residences at the W Hotel in Hollywood.

Van Patter Design brought us on for the project, along with dozens of local designers and artisans to create an eco-unit that was unique and regional.  To keep with the eco-local theme of the unit, we used reclaimed redwood sourced from The Reclaimer, a great place to find a variety of reclaimed lumber in the Los Angeles Area.

More information and images about the project can be found on the GREEN + VINE website. And you can recreate the same look with our SR Patio Garden Kit, or start your patio garden with an SR Patio Garden that's already assembled.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

WPA 2.0

A few months ago, we submitted a proposal for a competition sponsored by CityLAB that explored the possibilities of a new type of Works Progress Adminstration that places nested scales of infrastructure at the heart of rebuilding cities during this next era of metropolitan recovery. Our WPA 2.0 proposal laid out a strategically integrated plan which we called WELL: Work Eat Live Link. In a nutshell, our proposal looked at how modifying or rethinking day to day activities regarding how we work, eat, live and link can effect far reaching change that can foster lasting results.

Our entry is one of the Select Design Proposals featured on the WPA 2.0 online exhibit. Just click on "Multi-part Strategy", "Radical Adaptive Reuse", "Mobility + Accessibility", or "Food Production + Distribution", and our project is listed first on the upper left. We're pretty excited that our proposal fits into so many categories. You can also find our proposal in full on our site.

Friday, April 16, 2010

SR Packaging

We've made a conscious effort to try and package all of our SR products in the most efficient and "ready to ship" means possible. Our cardboard packaging is customized with a Scout Regalia stamp on the side, and a line drawing of what the product will look like after assembly. When you order our SR Raised Garden Kit (DIY/Staked) or the SR Patio Garden Kit (DIY), expect to find this package at your doorstep.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

We're Branding- The Old Fashioned Way

We are very excited about our new brand- in the oldest sense of the word. Did you know that the word "brand" comes from the Norse term brandr, which means "to burn"? Our Scout Regalia wood brand allows us to discreetly make our mark on the underside of our SR Outdoor Table Set and the SR Patio Garden Kit (Assembled). It's a really fun process to do and watch, and we're currently resisting the urge to brand everything in sight, including toast.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Summer Garden Seed Starting

Have you started planting your seeds for your summer garden yet? Here in Los Angeles, it seems like the growing season is all year round, which for the most part, is true. However, summertime does yield some of our most abundant vegetables, the heartiest of which we grow from seed. A great resource for finding out when and what you should plant in your growing zone is the good 'ole Farmer's Almanac.

We went all out this year with a goal of starting our entire garden from seed. We've started with zucchini, pole beans, poblano/ anaheim/ jalapeno peppers, green peppers, eggplants, shiso, and a half a dozen variety of heirloom tomatoes.

And for fun, you can document your growing seeds with Hipstamatic, a new photo application for the iPhone that will make it look like you've traveled back in time to do your gardening.

Monday, January 25, 2010

SR Product Postcards

For each of our products, we design 5" x 7" information postcards that go into a little more detail about the product. With our latest releases, we created double sided postcards for the SR Outdoor Table Set and the SR Patio Garden. Since our Outdoor Table Set comes with 210 color options, we thought it would be a great way to showcase the rainbow of choices for the enameled finish. These postcards, along with information cards for all of our other products, are downloadable on our website. Below are links to the info cards for the latest Scout Regalia products- enjoy!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

SR Outdoor Table Set

Since we don’t have a lot of space to host proper dinners inside our apartment, we designed and built an outdoor table set that comfortably seats 8. This is a prototype of our SR Outdoor Table Set, which is our first venture into made-to-order furniture (you can see more pics and order it here).

Outdoor Inspiration

This unclad teepee was already here when we moved in, and it provides a nice addition to our yard. The teepee helps delineate a nice outdoor space without too much structure.

Scout Regalia Headquarters

We have a modest space but we are making the most of our limited space and resources. We view our live-work space as an inviting and inspirational space that serves as both home and laboratory for our various Scout Regalia designs.

Scout Regalia Office

Working from our home office, we’ve adapted our living room to utilize it more as a work space, but also made it comfortable enough to host get-togethers and accommodate friends (our Hans Wegner sofa turns into a day bed). We designed and built our bookcase along with our linear work table, which is made of solid core doors over plywood storage boxes. We clad one entire wall with homasote to serve as a work board to quickly pin up and review ideas, or place inspirational images for new work.