Modko is a New York City based product design company founded by designers, Brett Teper and Rich Williams. Their first product, The ModKat Litter Box was unveiled at the ICFF in 2009 where it proudly took home the Editors award for best accessory. More recently ModKat picked up a Red Dot Design Award honor. Modko was born out of a curious need to rethink everyday products and make them a bit more useful and aesthetically pleasing.
On a more personal note, I met this design duo at ICFF and they are simply the most down-to-earth guys — very fun and friendly.
We’re sharing five Mod (yet accessible) things for Mod apartments.
1. Window Birdfeeder by Born in Sweden (Rich)
No backyard? No bird bath? No worries! My apartment is on the 2nd floor in Park Slope Brooklyn, granted there is plenty of nature out here but this little modern bird feeder brings it right to my window. My kids love it and my cats love it even more and it’s only $20! Our friends Andy and Rose at APLUSR introduced this to me, thanks guys!
2. Milking Stool by UM Project (Brett)
A Small apartment needs a small stool and I’ve been eying the milking stool since visiting the Um Project studio a few weeks ago. Our buddy François Chambard started UM Project in 2004 as a hybrid company crossing over artisanship and consultancy — in other words developing strong creative concepts and getting his hands dirty. He has been working hard and been getting recognized year after year at ICFF. The Milking Stool is available in different woods (white oak, ash, teak, walnut), many finishes (natural, milk paint, gold-plated), monochromatic or duo tone.
Editor’s note: I had the Milking Stools ready to be featured on the site this week, but these guys beat me to the punch! Aren’t they great?
3. Mod(ed) IKEA (Rich and Brett)
One of the best things IKEA offers are the variety of kitchen cabinets and there is no reason to limit them to the kitchen. Over the years Brett has been IKEA hacking his apartment, office and recently I dragged him to my place (my daughter Reese can be quite persuasive!). After expressing my dislike in the cabinetry options for kids he helped me customize a perfect wall of shiny white cabinets in my kids bedroom. He has become a master craftsman of sorts when it comes to the hack treatment. These hold everything from their clothes to games and are very Mod.
Brett also hacked his own place by combining and modifying stock IKEA kitchen and wardrobe cabinets. He created a wall-to-wall storage system leveraging every inch of their scant 130 sq ft bedroom. Both his wife and her shoes are extremely pleased.
4. Vanilla Bikes (Rich)
If you are like me you have a bike with no place to store it except on your wall. This means the bike you do hang must look slick. Vanilla bikes are custom made in Portland by a guy named Sacha White, he brings an uncompromised vision to his style and thats the kind of product I like best. The mix of modern and retro is amazing while the attention to detail is undeniable. The only problem with these babies is there is a 5 year waiting list (yes really). Ok, that was my own little fantasy, back to reality. For a very different yet more practical option check out this great shop in our hood called Adeline Adeline, they have some nice city cruisers at nicer prices and they too will look great on your wall.
5. Grindenstein Knockbox (Brett)
I’m not much of a morning person, but one thing I do look forward to is making my morning espresso. Yes, you heard me right, I enjoy making it! Of course I love drinking it to, but I have also learned to appreciate the ritual of pulling a perfect shot. Part of the process is rejecting the used espresso puck, using the side of our shiny stainless garbage pale, which I quickly managed to dent like a car bumper in Manhattan parking lot. Until I discovered the Grindenstein, a Knockbox by an Aussie company called Dreamfarm. It reminds me of what we did with ModKat, taking a product used everyday to dispose of something, simplifying the design and making it look as beautiful as the other objects in your apartment. The Grindenstein looks great and functions like a champ!