Sita Kuratomi Bhaumik

It's Complicated

Artist Angie Wang imagines women in a "casually malevolent" world.

ANGIE WANG describes herself as an "illustratress and cartoonista," a nod to the influence of fashion and comics in her work. The Portland, OR-based artist is compelled by feelings of terror and regret, particularly in horror and science fiction. "I'm interested in worlds where people are overwhelmed by their circumstances, or where they have no way of expressing agency, or where the environment is malevolent—worlds that are oppressive but still complicated and even beautiful," Wang says.  

The Future of Fragrance

Perfumer Yosh Han appeals to the public’s sense of smell.

“PEOPLE DON'T USE THEIR SMELLER,” Yosh Han says. She’s trying hard to change that with an eponymous collection of luxury fragrances available at department stores, such as Barneys New York, as well as holding perfuming workshops and creating custom scents. Han has blended fragrances for a novel, the opera and even time travel (she blended a series of scents inspired by everything from “Cavemen” to “Dystopia” for youth writing workshop 826LA’s Time Travel Mart).

Drawn to the Edge

Weston Takeshi Teruya invites you to a world of possibility and destruction.

In Weston Takeshi Teruya’s work, makeshift islands are constructed from objects of the built environment. The markers of borders — fences, cones and barriers — explode and implode on paper as Teruya explores the ways that borders shape spatial narratives, how they define relationships and access. But what Teruya calls drawings are actually intricate pieces crafted from handcut, handdrawn paper. Expanses of white, on closer inspection, are layered with detail.

Spice War

Chinese restaurants are stigmatized for using MSG but the tasty additive is in everything from KFC to pizza.

BATTERED AND DOUSED IN BUBBLING OIL - why is fried chicken so delectable? Neither General Tso nor Colonel Sanders is quick to reveal the secret. Could it be ... MSG?

Today's leading Chinese American fast-food eateries, such as Panda Express, have a "No MSG" policy. KFC, meanwhile, continues to use MSG - monosodium glutamate - in everything from chicken to croutons. Yet many consumers associate only General Tso with this maligned ingrethent.

Find Your Bliss

Leather with a tropical twist.

It ain't your grandma's Hawaiian quilt, but these sexy accessories were inspired by it. Raised in Hawaii, Bliss Lau moved to New York and blended island sensibility and urban details. Easy on the eyes and nice on the shoulders, Lau's bags sport soft straps and thoughtful touches like PDA pockets. We couldn't help but notice that the chains on her Suspension bag bear more than a little resemblance to a very famous bridge. Her latest collection includes curve-alicious waist cinchers infused with Hawaiian patterns.

Grumpy Girl Gets Even

Keep your car clean with a cuter pooper scooper.

"Everything is cute until it poops" says Allison Takeshita of Grumpy Girl, maker of the Auto Bird Turd Emergency Kit. A self-defined "lazy car-owner" Takeshita had enough of the "unwanted natural decoration" ruining her already dirty car. A former accountant, and no stranger to problem solving, she devised a solution that would cut the crap without the hassle of washing her entire car.

Studs for Studs

Customized man bling at Rex Studio Designs.

If you've got an addiction to ice, Janet Tzou's your dealer. The designer behind Baby Doll Gems and Fauxsie Jewels garners a celeb following that reads like Us Weekly. But after partying at Le Rex-a sexy Paris nightclub-she realized that the Jay-Z's of the world wanted to sparkle just as much as the JLo's.

Go Forth and Be Crafty

Cool stuff delivered to your door.

Imagine getting a box filled with cd's, handmade soap, zines, buttons, jewelry, and all sorts of "friggin' sweet" stuff. No, it's not your birthday; it's the Sampler, a monthly subscription service and the brainchild of crafter Marie Kare.

Yeah its cool, but the Sampler is also an ingenious marketing and promotional tool for indie businesses trying to spread the word about their products. Kare is careful to steer clear of submissions that are plastered with logos, business names and URLs. So, for $23.00 a month, you get a selection of curated goodies delivered to your doorstep.

Takeout

Stuff to Take Home

There’s a Monster In My Pocket
Warm up your iPod.

Artist Jacqueline Myers-Cho gave birth to the very first iPod Monster Socks on a crisp November evening in 2004. Labor was difficult. The monsters would have squealed—if she had finished sewing on their mouths. The Monster Socks, with their jingle bells and safety pins for eyeballs, were a terrifying lot.

I'm Famous in Bollywood

Boast a little brown with Desi Threads

So maybe your shirt says you’re famous in Bollywood but you’re actually…not. Shhh, we won’t tell. While DJing in Houston, founder Pankaj Patel realized that a lot of party-goers wanted to wear their brown pride on their sleeves. Bharat Mata being his mother of invention, Patel founded Desi Threads. Patel flaunts a series of modified logos where “Intel Inside” becomes “Desi Inside.” Some of his top-selling prints include “Wanna Play my Tablas?” and “Brown on the Outside, Sweet on the Inside.” His first shirt though? The unisex “OM” tee.

Get Woo

The perfect playclothes

It began in 1997 with a bag made from an old cashmere sweater. It was cute. It was comfy. It was Woo. After the success of these cuddly bags, Californian Staci Woo launched her own line of clothing. In her collections, Woo has made personalized Pima thongs and strappy cashmere camisoles. Dusted with playful polka-dots and trimmed with lace, her clothing is perfect for lazy Los Angeles days. It comes as no surprise that celebs (name-drop here) are all about Woo. Her clothing has that coveted I-look-good-without-any-effort look.

All Puns Intended

Michael Arcega plays with language, politics and endangers a Chihuahua for the sake of art.

Photographer P. G. Rafanan

Artist Michael Arcega builds a seaworthy galleon and a coat of armor—all out of manila folder; sails it through Tomales Bay, and christens the project “El Conquistadork.” From office supplies in “El Conquistadork” to canned meat product in “SPAM/MAPS,” Arcega coaxes meaning from the mundane by manipulating materials and language.

Hit us with the basics.

Thanks for Last Night

From liquid courage to condoms, this little bag's got back

Born of a stitch ‘n bitch circle, the Booty Bag covers all your basics and then some. Four crafty ladies got together and recognized the need for a different kind of emergency kit. The compact Booty Bag is the perfect solution for a dating rut, a spontaneous night out, or a calculated encounter with your obsession du jour. This kit includes a hand-sewn thong (in case you have a Bridget Jones moment), a mini flask, a tiny razor, a feminine wipe, gum, lube, two condoms, a safety pin and aspirin. For the tongue-tied, it even has a a little book full of pick-up lines and ways to ditch a dud.

EyeyGoggles Galore

Allyn Scura eyewear.

Photo: Seng Chen; Model: Danielle Katzen

Allyn Scura and Scott Iseyama invite you to a veritable smorgasbord of antique and vintage eyewear. Wait—scratch that. With an inventory of more than 50,000 pairs ranging from the 18th century to the 1970s their offerings surpass any Vegas buffet we’ve ever seen. The difference behind allynscura.com is that virtually all of its eyewear is vintage but never worn. This means you can score Elton John eye goggles at Elton John standards without paying Elton John prices.

Squishy Squeaky Scatsquatch

Scatsquatch sighting on Planet Tokki-Som.

Photo: Seng Chen

The fabled Scatsquatch was first sighted on Planet Tokki-Som by Hae Eun Park in 2004. Rumored to be small and lumpy, they appear in shades of brown and green. They migrate regularly, usually in the mornings, and at the most inopportune of moments. After numerous attempts by Park to domesticate the furry beasts, she was finally able to breed the legendary Scatsquatch for tokkisom.com.