As "Game of Thrones," liked to remind us: "The night is dark and full of terrors." This saying means so much more in the throes of winter when the days are short and the night is seemingly never-ending. With Gantri's sexy lighting, Loftie's thoughtful alarm clock and Brooklinen's limited-edition sheets, the nighttime (and subsequent mornings) have been full of fewer terrors. And two whiskey and ice cream collaborations that launched coincidentally close together will help close out the shorter days with a sweet and boozy note. Check out all the home and design products we either found or were released last month here.
There's a whole new industry of making "dumb" technology. Look at the Light Phone, for example, which only lets you make phone calls and send texts. Loftie is a new alarm clock that wants to keep your phone out of your sleep routine. Studies, like one from The BMJ, show that the use of electronics before bed can affect sleep quality. So Loftie retains your phone's functions that help you sleep — alarms, white noise, meditation — and none of the stuff that can keep you awake — phone calls, texts, social media. A plethora of well-thought-out features — such as a two-phase alarm, nightlight and dimmable display — ensure that you can put your phone to bed so you can get yourself to bed.
Reform x Norm Architects
Unless you've been shopping to completely redo your kitchen, you might not know about Reform. The brand specializes in creating beautifully designed kitchens at reasonable price points. It's not Ikea cheap, but you get what you pay for. Reform just released a new kitchen design, Profile, with the Scandinavian design brand Norm Architects. Profile is as minimal as it is functional. It makes use of the ubiquitous integrated handle, which is why it looks like all the drawers and doors are incapable of being opened. The name "Profile" comes from the integrated handles extruded and rounded profile that simultaneously feels like it's there and not there.
Article Eres Desk
You can tell a lot about a person by the desk they use. And if they don't have one, you can tell they're going to be paying for it in chiropractor charges in the future. The new Eres desk from Article has an industrial-style build with a walnut-finished table atop black iron legs. There are numerous cubby holes in the platform ledge so you can be as organized (or unorganized) as you want. Plus, because of the aforementioned platform, you don't need to buy a monitor stand for those two-screen layouts.
The Artifox Table is whatever you want it to be. Sure, it's literally called "Table," but it's also a desk. The 70-inch by 36-inch table has enough to seat up to four people for a meal or a work session. The smartly designed Table has a hidden cable management system under the surface, and the cords are easily accessible from the middle of the table. The fact that the Table is easy to assemble and disassemble make this a piece of furniture you're going to have for a very long time no matter how often you move.
Fruitsuper Plant Sticks
Naturally plants don't always grow the way you want. Droopy leaves, saggy buds and crooked stems are common symptoms of, well, nature. One way plant parents have remedied their not-so-perfect plants is by using plant sticks, often wooden and not so attractive. These plant sticks from Fruitsuper are made of solid brass and come in three shapes to give your plants a little nudge towards perfection.
Parachute x Crate & Barrel
Those in the know are familiar with Parachute, a bedding brand that's so much more than sheets and pillows. With an assortment of bathroom essentials and even dinnerware, Parachute is an all-around lifestyle brand. Its latest collection with Crate & Barrel helps get Parachute onto more people's radar with a range of bedding and bath linens in neutral colors and in breezy fabrics.
Western Desert Studio Ceramics
Making pottery is cool. Just look at Seth Rogen or Patrick Swayze in "Ghost." Brian DeRan was a music manager before he started up his own ceramics line, Western Desert Studio. The art school graduate got into ceramics after moving to Joshua Tree, and his love of the land is present in his creations — they're all made from materials mined in California. DeRan's works include vases and plates, and because each piece is handmade, they're one of one.
WhistlePig x Ben & Jerry's Whiskey Biz
Two Vermont legends, WhistlePig and Ben & Jerry's, teamed up to make a whiskey ice cream, essentially putting two of our favorite guilty pleasures into one sinful pint. The ice cream, called Whiskey Biz, is made with a base of brown butter bourbon ice cream that's filled with blonde brownie chunks, then topped with white chocolate ganache and white fudge chunks. The caramel that swirls around in the ice cream is made with WhistlePig's six-year-old PiggyBack Rye. Whiskey Biz is one of the seven flavors coming from Ben & Jerry's "Topped" series that the brand calls "an ice cream sundae in a pint."
Mayonnaise is one of those condiments that you either love or hate. I am in neither of those groups. I'll never ask for mayo, but I'll never be upset that it's on something I'm eating. But with Truff's newest releases, Truffle Mayonnaise and Spicy Truffle Mayonnaise, I may be asking for mayo more often. Truff started as a truffle-infused hot sauce brand, and its new mayonnaises follow the release of its pasta sauces. And like its predecessors, Truffle Mayonnaise and Spicy Truffle Mayonnaise are made with enough black winter truffles that won't make you question whether or not any of that gourmet gold is actually in there.
Gantri Ember Wall Light and Discus Table Light
There's "mood lighting," and then there's mood lighting. The latter of which is what Gantri — one of the coolest lighting brands right now — is aiming for with its latest releases. The Ember Wall Light and Discus Table Light are, as the brand notes, designed to "enhance your sense of intimacy and set the mood for deeper connection." The dimmable lights, meant to mimic the glow of candles, are made with a new design studio called SPRK. Based in San Francisco, SPRK was founded Nate Sprecher, who identifies as a member of the Queer community. Sprecher's goal is to create safe spaces with an eye toward sensual lighting. The two new lamps continue to grow on what Gantri started out to achieve: making sustainable lighting with a sense of purpose and to give up-and-coming designers (or even large design studios like Ammunition) an outlet to make something great.
Price: $175 each
Portland-based beverage brand Aurora Superior Sparkling Beverages followed up its hemp-infused sparkling beverages with one that swaps out hemp for hops. Aurora Hops takes the hops you might know from your favorite IPA — Citra and Mosaic —and turns them into refreshing booze-free beverages. The new drink comes in two flavors: Pomelo Sage, which is citrusy and herbaceous, and Yuzu Orange Blossom, which is spicy, floral and earthy.
New London Light
If you extended Dry January into Dry February (and beyond), there's a new non-alcoholic spirit you can add to your bar cart. The England-based Salcombe Distilling Co. just brought their New London Light stateside. The drink, inspired by the gin-making process, is distilled with juniper berries (duh), lemongrass, habanero capsicum and sage among other botanicals. Because of ginger and habanero capsicum, the New London Light has a warming effect, sort of like how a full-booze spirit would have.
Minor Figures Canned Coffees and Teas
You may have seen Minor Figures' oat milk before. The brand is known for drawing attention thanks to its quirky branding, and the oat milk itself has a dedicated fanbase, mostly comprising coffee lovers and baristas. It's now making canned coffees and teas mixed with its infamous oat milk, and it's like having a barista making café-quality beverages in your home. The lineup includes a latte, matcha latte, chai latte and mocha, all of which can be found in select indie coffee shops and Whole Foods (later in April in mid-Atlantic stores) across the US.
Una Pizza Napoletana Merch
New York City has almost as many pizzerias as people (a huge exaggeration). So for Una Pizza Napoletana to have made the splash that it has must mean it's good. The pizzeria, owned by chef Anthony Mangieri (who cameoed on the Showtime series "Billions"), dishes Neapolitan pies, notable for their thin base crust and fluffy rim, and food reviewers have been flocking to the joint's two locations in the Lower East Side of Manhattan (closed temporarily) and New Jersey (open for takeout). If you can't grab a pie, you can at least rep the brand with its recently launched merch. Designed by artists Lucas Beaufort and Max Mueller (who did the mermaid design pictured above), the collection includes tees, hoodies and a beanie. With restaurants struggling now more than ever, copping a restaurant's branded tee might just ensure you can grab a bite to eat there once the pandemic's over.
Brooklinen Limited-Edition Sheets
There was a time when bed sheets were just bed sheets. That time was before Brooklinen came out, and the brand has since turned bedding, bathroom knits and cozy apparel into it times for a generation of cool kids. Brooklinen is known for releasing limited-edition prints for its bedding, with a new collection out now that's inspired by '70s grooviness. The retro-inspired prints will make you feel obligated to change your sheets more often because having Brooklinen in your home is the new style flex.
Vervet Canned Cocktails
The advent of canned cocktails has made it easier to get bar-worthy cocktails at home without having to own a full-on bar. And with the latest brand of canned cocktails, Vervet, co-founder (and former bartender) Hope Ewing is bringing bartender-made cocktails into homes across America. Each cocktail in Vervet's lineup — Angelicano, Pale Mary, Sundowner and Tiki Tea — is made entirely of Vervet-made products from the bitters and vermouth to the interesting stuff like oolong tea and tomato water. When coming up with the canned cocktails, Ewing based the recipes on a 10-ounce highball made of two ounces of 80-proof alcohol. She found the higher ABV helped to give the drinks more of a cook, and they just tasted better. Vervet ships nationwide to 41 states (sorry Alabama, Arkansas, Michigan, Mississippi, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee, Utah and Vermont), and they'll be sure to kick the current winter blues aside.
Reed Art Department x Parc Eames Lounge Chair and Ottoman
Reed Art Department, a creative studio founded by streetwear legend Jeff Staple, partnered with Parc, a furniture company, to rework three Eames Lounge Chairs and Ottomans in a gradient colorway. The black-to-white gradient is meant to pay homage to New York City, from the asphalt to the way the the buildings and concrete play off each other on a foggy day. Can't drop ten grand on a chair? There's a tee to accompany the limited-edition chairs that might be more wallet friendly at $60. The longe-sleeve shirt makes reference to a 1953 short film produced by the Eamses for Georgia’s Department of Arts.
Garrison Bros Whiskey x McConnell’s Fine Ice Creams Pecan & Pralines
We covered WhistlePig's new ice cream made with Ben & Jerry's, and now there's another whiskey-based ice cream out. Garrison Bros lent its Texas Straight Bourbon to McConnell's Fine Ice Creams for its new Pecan & Pralines flavor. The whiskey is mixed into the ice cream, which is topped with salt-roasted and caramel-coated pecans. You can order the pints online, but if you're on the west coast, pints will be available for sale at McConnell’s scoop shops.
Brightland Rosette Olive Oil
The olive oil inside a bottle of Brightland is just as good as its packaging, and people are catching on to high-end olive oil. Its newest offering is Rosette, which combines two things that always pair well together: garlic and olive oil. Brightland offers some food pairings that go well with Rosette, and it seems like it just goes with everything. The olives are picked from a family-owned farm in California, and the bottle was designed by Lilian Martinez, marking the first time the brand has worked with a woman of color artist.
The Alphabet of Art at Warby Parker
Every direct-to-consumer brands seems to be the Warby Parker of their category. Well there's only one actual Warby Parker, and it's a Gear Patrol favorite for its affordable prescription eyewear available in a wide variety of colors and styles. Over its 11-year run, Warby Parker has collaborated with over 100 artists for graphics on its buildings and products, and to commemorate its 11th anniversary, the eyewear brand released "The Alphabet of Art at Warby Parker." The book highlights all of the artists the brand has worked with, and it's currently available in all locations across the US and Canada. Also, all proceeds from book purchases will go towards Warby Parker's Pupils Project, which helps New York City, Philadelphia and Baltimore schoolchildren take care of their vision.
Vivid Coffee Treatment Action Group Blend
Vermont-based Vivid Coffee opened its first brick and mortar store in December, and our very own Vermonter Tanner Bowden can attest to the quality and taste of the coffee. While you'll find standard blends and single origins, its Treatment Action Group blend might catch some eyes — what kind of blend name is that? Treatment Action Group, or TAG, is actually a think think that advocates for better treatment and prevention for HIV, tuberculosis, and hepatitis C virus, as well as vaccines and cures. For every bag of TAG blend coffee sold, $5 will go towards TAG to support its initiative.
The Citizenry Cocoon Capsule Pillows
When your boring old couch just isn't earning you any interior design cred, the least you can do is add a few throw pillows. The Citizenry, a home goods store that sources its products from artisans around the world, recently started carrying Weavers Of San Pedro's assortment of handmade pillows made in Peru. Each is blended of highland and alpaca wool, which give the pillows a texture that looks and feels great. The pillows feature muted colors in understated designs that can elevate even the most schlubby sofa, whether they're on their own or mixed and matched with other designs.
Rum is the brown spirit you didn't know you needed more of in your life. Kasama is a new direct-to-consumer rum with a background story as interesting as what's in the bottle. Alexandra Dorda, Kasama's founder, is the daughter of Tad Dorda, who co-founded two leading vodka brands: Belvedere and Chopin. The daughter of a Filipino mother and a Polish father, Dorda pays homage to both parents. Kasama is distilled in the Philippines, aged for seven years in ex-bourbon American oak barrels, then bottled at the family distillery in Poland. Kasama eschews the spiciness some may associate with rum. It tastes almost exactly like someone bottled the flavor of an upside-down pineapple cake with nary a tinge of alcohol burn — a slightly concerning fact since this stuff goes down way too easy.
The thing about doormats is that you only ever see them when you're out the door or coming home. They wipe off that little bit of dirt on your shoes before you go inside, and if you're lucky, you found one that makes you feel happy to be home. With Revival's new doormats, you can also feel happy that they're made of 100-percent coconut husks, a sustainable material that is strong and water resistant. The brand is also giving 10 percent of it sales to the non-profit organization Carbon 180, which aims reduce carbon's impact on the planet.
The Macallan Anecdotes of Ages
You probably won't get your hands on The Macllan's latest release. Anecdotes of Ages, a 13-bottle collection of 54-year-old whiskies, is the third collaboration with renowned pop artist Sir Peter Blake. You might know Sir Blake for creating the album cover to The Beatles' "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band." Like the cover, each of the bottles features a unique collage designed by the artist, and purchases of the bottle include an accompanying book that contain all of the artworks, which evoke a different detail from The Macallan's history. One of the bottles, dubbed "A New Era of Advertising," will be auctioned off auctioned off by Sotheby's on March 13, and it's expected to bring in up to $750,000. Another bottle will be archived by The Macallan, and only 11 of the 13 bottles will be available for purchase. Like I said, you probably won't get your hands on one of these.
Staying sober can be fun, and with Kin Euphorics, sobriety can still get you buzzed but without the alcohol. Packed with feel-good ingredients, like adaptogens and nootropics, Kin's beverages offer drinks that take the stigma out of staying sober. Currently its lineup includes two bottled spirits: High Rhode, a get-you-going shot that arguably works better than coffee, and Dream Light, a spiced ginger drink to help you sleep. The Kin Spritz, essentially a canned cocktail (still booze free), is an eight-ounce sparkling beverage that tastes floral, herbaceous and slightly spicy and helps me feel like I can get on my workday after noon.
Bloomscape Outdoor Plants
Bloomscape is bringing its plant domination from inside to the outdoors. Its new Bloom Kits are designed to planted outside, helping anyone get a bountiful garden. The kits are sold as accent kits, or packs that include only one variety of plant, or combination kits, which include three varieties. Rather than buying outdoor plants for big box stores, try shopping from somewhere that specializes in selling plants.
Simplehuman Compost Caddy
A simple little product from Simplehuman might finally get more people to start composting. The Compost Caddy is a $50 add-on that attaches with a magnet to existing Simplehuman trash cans. Ingenious little details like a stay-open lid is convenient for tossing out scraps, and the lid has a soft seal, which lets food breathe without stinking up your place and it keeps pests at bay. Undock the caddy from your trashcan for countertop disposable, and the included 30-pack of compostable liners should last you a while.
Wunder, a brand of sparkling beverages spiked with low-dose THC, launched Wunder20, which features a higher dose of THC. With 20 milligrams of THC, Wunder20 offers a stronger feeling than the OG cans. If you're an amateur cannabis consumer, tread lightly — you won't fall flat on your face after drinking Wunder20, but you will feel something. Two types of THC, Delta-8 and Delta-9, are used in the drink to achieve what the brand calls a "calm, relaxing and elevated high." While Delta-9 THC is the stuff that is usually associated with getting high on weed, Delta-8 THC has half its psychotropic potency, making for a more lucid type of chill. Wunder20 comes in Blood Orange Bitters and is 25 calories with four grams of sugar. Wunder and Wunder20 are only available in California.
Price: $24 for a four-pack
Dogfish Head Hazy-O!
Combining oats with beer isn't new. In fact, many IPAs use oats to to give it their haziness and make it shelf stable. But Dogfish Head's new Hazy-O! is taking the whole oats thing way out of the box. The IPA is brewed with four different types of oat, each bringing a something different to the table whether it's its looks or flavor. Then there's oat milk. Dogfish Head uses Elmhurst 1925’s Unsweetened Oat Milk, which gives Hazy-O! a wonderfully smooth mouthfeel and helps make the 7.1 percent ABV feel way less boozy.