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Subway Series Jewelry by Shahla Karimi

Wear the Harlem to South Ferry route on your wrist from the Brooklyn-based designer's debut collection

by Gabriella Garcia in Design on 21 October 2014

Brooklyn, 3D Printing, Independent Designers, Jewelry, MTA, NYC Subway, NYC Transit, Cuffs

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Sometimes inspiration comes from the most ordinary experiences. For Brooklyn-based jewelry designer Shahla Karimi, that inspiration came from her daily commute. Drawing from the MTA subway map, Karimi has created a collection of rings and cuffs that trace transit routes between some of the city's most famous destinations. For the aptly-named Subway Series, Karimi creates a simplicity in design which contradicts the chaotic frequency that buzzes beneath the streets of the five boroughs. "If you can look past the noise of the text, the lines are very organic and beautiful when isolated," Karimi explains.

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The collection, which is part of Karimi's just launched online shop, consists of three cuffs and three rings which can be worn individually or stacked. The first Series features three unique routes—Inwood to World Trade Center, Yankee Stadium to Wall Street, and Harlem to South Ferry—available in sterling silver, 14k gold and, next month, gold vermeil. Karimi hopes, however, to expand the collection to cover more of the city. "There are so many routes I want to create," she says, "I have to finish [Manhattan] and then Brooklyn will be next—it's where I live and work." Karimi will also introduce a finer line that will feature diamonds to mark express stops.

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Karimi uses 3D software and printing to design the Subway Series, which she says is the only way she could have possibly captured the exact curves of each route. "I would have never been able to hand carve these to be an exact tracing of the current map," she says. Karimi also uses traditional lost-wax casting methods, creating what she calls an "intersection of old world techniques and new world technologies." Through this fusion, Karimi presents a seamless, polished collection that holds mystery in its abstract forms.

Karimi shows ultimate appreciation for the city that inspires her by keeping all of her manufacturing in NYC, noting that keeping production local is very important to her. Though she has been working in product and product strategy for nearly a decade, her store launch marks Karimi's debut as an independent designer. "Launching my own jewelry line has been a pipe dream since 2007," she says.

Subway Series silver rings ($160 for a set of three) and cuffs ($200 each) are available for pre-sale online, shipping 11 November 2014. The collection will also be available at the STORY holiday shop (144 10th Ave, NYC) this November.

Images courtesy of Shahla Karimi

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Test Drive: 2015 Bentley GT3-R

The fastest Bentley ever made gets inspiration from its track-driving cousin

by Evan Orensten in Design on 21 October 2014

Bentley, Test Ride, Automotive, Cars, GT3R, Test Drives, Carbon Fiber, England, Handmade, Pebble Beach, Racecars, UK

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"Racing changes the perception," says Brian Gush, Bentley’s Director of Motorsport. The Bentley GT3-R is the latest evolution of the brand's suave and still-alluring Continental GT—and the fastest Bentley ever made. It hauls ass in the most gentlemanly manner, politely even. Though it receives the expected luxury fittings, it takes most of its style cues—both styling and performance—from the automaker's successful GT3 race car.

Limited to only 300 worldwide (99 of them are in the USA), the car’s charm lies in its Jekyll and Hyde personality. Happy to hit the farmer’s market or the office without effort or wrangling, it’s truly an easy daily driver. And yet, it’s also a beast, able to effortlessly hit 60 mph in a mere 3.6 seconds with its turbocharged eight-cylinder engine and 572 hp under the hood. It stops as impressively with its massive carbon ceramic brakes.

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Like its race car relative, this model is only available in the same Glacier White paint and Cool Hunting green accents (coincidence, we ask?), sporting a large GT3-R logo on its hips that’s a bit naff, but it works. The interior is a far cry from its spartan track car cousin, wrapping you in leather and carbon fiber trim. The backseat is gone, part of the nipping and tucking that has removed around 220 lbs from the standard GT.

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What's most inspiring about the car is how well it brings sport to the GT but doesn't try to be something that it's not: a supercar. It's not the fastest car you can buy. It's not the best handling car. All of those require a very different starting point and driving experience. What it does do, that few others can, is so authentically blend its racing heritage with the luxury, performance and there-when-you-want-it power and packaging these attributes together in a car that works however you want to experience it.

We hit the road in the GT3-R with Gush for a quick tour around Pebble Beach and the winding roads around the Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, drooling over the all-wheel drive car’s acceleration, sticky cornering and drivability—there’s no fighting to make this car perform. When in Drive mode it handles and sounds more like a GT. Putting the car in Sport mode, however, brings out the Hyde. The car's sound changes. Gears shift crisper and faster. Everything is tighter, and every corner is a new challenge waiting to be conquered.

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We asked Gush about the design brief for the car. "Well, I used the same [designer]. We've got the road car. We've got the racecar. I want a very clear link. I didn't have to give him much of a brief. I wanted the racecar to look like the road car, and the road car to look like the racecar," he says.

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“There’s so much handwork in the car, my production colleagues aren’t that happy with me,” Gush says laughingly. “The carbon fiber is all hand laid. The weave joints, it’s all bookmarked in a herringbone pattern and has a seam straight down the middle of the car. The seats are hand done.” He notes that because of all of this work, and the fact that the cars are made on the same production line as all other Bentleys, it made sense to build them at the same time. “Then the cars are taken to our small shop in the Motorsport department and they are finished off,” and sent to dealers around the world who snapped up the entire production run.

The Bentley Boy legend is alive and well.

The Bentley GT3-R will set you back around $337,000 in the USA. "You can have any color you want as long as its white," says Gush. Visit Bentley for details.

Lead image by Evan Orensten, additional images courtesy of Bentley

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.klatz Smartwatch and Handset

A stylish wrist accessory rethinking the form and functions of wearable tech

by David Graver in Tech on 21 October 2014

Fashion, Innovation, Klatz, Tech Innovations, Wearable Devices, Wearable Tech, Accessories

While fashion often takes a backseat to function, or vice versa, in wearable tech, Ukraine's .klatz is hoping to change that with their smartwatch and handset. They've revisited the bracelet form, but unlike Nike's FuelBand, this accessory is style-forward and manages to pack sophisticated features. In fact, it goes so far as to receive calls, which you answer by popping the hinged bracelet open. While banking on the fashion angle might seem a bit gimmicky, the fact of the matter is: it's time to start rethinking the form of smartwatches.

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.klatz's large LED indicator screen may not seem as advanced as the Apple Watch's vibrant display, but there are 384 LED lights within the offering—allowing for customization of notifications. As far as those notifications go, the watch receives SMS and email alerts—allowing users to review the entire message. Music control, from swiping forward through tracks or adjusting volume is also featured. The bracelet also indicates incoming phone calls. In addition to the text-based lights, the device also vibrates. As for other functionality, the smartwatch offers a calorie tracker and mileage counter.

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Perhaps most appealing, the device claims long lasting battery life, through the battery size and energy efficiency—with seven to 10 days guaranteed in normal mode and a month in standby. The charging unit also props the bracelet horizontally and keeps the watch feature active.

.klatz is will support devices including iPhone 4S and above, Android 4.1 and above, Windows Phone 8.1 and BlackBerry OS 10. The bracelet comes in multiple color options, across four sizes, and is crafted from lightweight, scratch-resistant aluminum and special scratch-resistant plastic.

You can back the .kltaz smartwatch and handset on indiegogo, and get a device at the early bird price of $99.

Images courtesy of .kltaz

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