New Photos

Posted by on Apr 15, 2014 in BLOG | No Comments

As a small-business owner, I wear many hats. All the office jobs I’ve worked in the past have given me the skills I need to do most tasks. Using Excel, Word, data-entry and accounting software are quite familiar to me. What’s worse is that I actually like a lot of that stuff, a rarity among the creative types. But damn it, I can’t seem to take a good product picture. So, I outsourced it to Liz Daly, a professional photographer who did a bang-up job on some product shots for me. They’re already peppered throughout my website and shop. I love them. I  especially loved opening them and dropping them into stuff without having to suffer through a few hours of Photoshop manipulation first.

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Originally, I had wanted to completely overhaul my website but felt overwhelmed by the expense and the labor that goes along with that. So, I took a look through my site and realized that the bones were good, the photos were just lacking. There’s more work to do but it was far easier to bite it off in smaller chunks, rather than a complete overhaul. It’s hard to know what to do. I first thought about learning more about photography , investing in some equipment and taking them myself. But instead, I decided to get a little professional and make a smaller investment in some great photos. That’s where I’m at.

Thanks, Muni Diaries!

Posted by on Apr 8, 2014 in BLOG | No Comments

The good folks over at Muni Diaries were kind enough to give my latest dish towel, the F Market Streetcar, a shout-out on their blog. Thanks, Muni Diaries! As a bonus, posting about this inspired me to update my press page. I hadn’t realized how much I would like seeing all my shout-outs on one page but damn, I love it. It makes me feel accomplished. It also makes me realize how long I’ve been slinging ink onto dish towels. Thanks to everyone who’s ever given The Heated a chance!

Muni Diaries Write-Up on the F Market design. Click to read full story.

Muni Diaries Write-Up on the F Market design. Click to read full story.

F Market Design Is Here

Posted by on Apr 1, 2014 in BLOG | No Comments

I’m so pleased to announce that the F Market design I’ve been working on is ready to go! I decided to go with one color for this design and electric blue was the overwhelming favorite during the testing phase. Here are some images:

fmarket both square

click image for closer view

fmarket med square

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fmarket close square

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fmarket shop button click to shoo online 2014

Clicking this photo will take you to my Etsy shop.

It took a while for me to learn to love the F Market line, which is part of San Francisco’s Market Street Railway program, which takes vintage streetcars from around the world and uses them as part of a line that runs down Market Street and hits a lot of the city’s most populated tourist attractions. They’re pretty but the ride is a bit slow. I used to walk a bit further to catch the underground trains downtown, instead of the F Market line. But two years ago, I sprained my ankle so badly that I was off my feet for a few weeks and had trouble making it all the way to the underground station. The F Market stop was a lot closer. It only took a few rides for me to realize that these classic streetcars are the quintessential San Francisco ride. My ankle is doing a lot better but I’ve found that the F Market is now my line of choice to get downtown.

The streetcars themselves are beautiful. They are touted as “Museums in Motion” and I must say that this is 90% of their charm. There are a ton of tourists on this line, which is great because tourism is our biggest industry. Things get weird though, because this line also serves the Civic Center area so there’s always a moment where tourists seem to get a bit nervous that they’ve boarded the wrong line when the destitute and the homeless board the streetcar. Public transportation is just that though, intended for the public. We all ride together, no matter our destination.

One last note, the car I used is actually orange and cream in real life and came from Cleveland, Ohio. More here: http://www.streetcar.org/streetcars/1075/

More Dish Towels In Oregon

Posted by on Mar 25, 2014 in BLOG | No Comments

Can you believe that I added another store from Oregon to the list of those who carry The Heated dish towels? Last time I was telling you about “Tender Loving Empire” in Portland and now you can also shop at Trillium in Wheeler, Oregon. Trillium picked up some of my botanically themed dish towels. I’m fairly certain they don’t have an internet presence so you might as well stop on by their location here:
Trillium
Old Wheeler Hotel
487 Hwy 101
Wheeler, OR 97147

trillium

Conservatory of Flowers Field Trip

Posted by on Mar 18, 2014 in BLOG | No Comments

A few weeks ago, I was going to meet a friend visiting from Japan at the Botanical Gardens in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to due to rain. I mean, I’m glad for the rain and it forced us to head to the Conservatory of Flowers in the park instead so it was not a loss. Here’s what we saw.

conservatoryexterior

Exterior of the Conservatory of Flowers.

conservatoryinterior

Interior of the roof

conservatoryunderwater

Shot of a glassed underwater section with the roof in the reflection of the glass.

conservatory texture

I love the crosshatching on the leaves of this one.

conservatory butterfly

The special exhibit was butterflies!

Two New Places To Buy Dish Towels

Posted by on Mar 11, 2014 in BLOG | No Comments

I’m really excited to tell you that you can now find The Heated dish towels in Portland, OR and Provo UT.

Tender Loving Empire is the store located in Portland, OR and you can get a sweet preview of what they’re about by watching the video below:

They’re located here:
412 SW 10th Ave. Portland, Oregon 97205
503.243.5859
Open 11-6 Daily

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Whale book ends available at Called To Surf

Called To Surf is located in Provo, UT. I love the spirit of a surf shop in Utah and I also love that they put a VW bus in the store. They picked up a few Goldfish dish towels to fit in with their ocean theme.
You can find them here:
4801 N. University Ave.
Suite 240
Provo, UT 84604
801-224-8400
MON-SAT: 10A-9P

Muni Field Trip

Posted by on Mar 4, 2014 in BLOG | No Comments

I’m in the last stages of releasing a new design (it will be released in late March) and it’s going to be the F Market train. Designing for a dish towel means that I need a strong image that can fit onto the front third panel of the fabric because that’s how everyone hangs their dish towels, right? So I need some specific stuff and it meant I needed to get out there and take some pictures of trains. I went out on two separate occasions and here’s what I got.

fmarketactual

This is the image I ended up using as my model for the design. This was taken on 17th Street, at the beginning of the line near the plaza. I realized I needed to go to a place where the trains were standing still so I could have some time to frame it properly.

fmarketstreetart

Some street art I saw on my way to the Castro to photograph the trains.

fmarkettrainbutt

Train butt. This one was taken downtown.

fmarketferrybldg

My original idea was to get the Ferry Building in this design (see it behind the traffic signal?) but that didn’t end up happening.

fmarketfieldtrip

Long shadows on the day my wife and I tried to get some F Market shots near the Castro.

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F Market train downtown.

Ludwig 1965 Drum Kit – After

Posted by on Feb 25, 2014 in BLOG | No Comments

As I mentioned last week, I’ve been restoring a drum kit. Here are the results.

full kit right

The finish is black diamond pearl.

full kit left

Of course I added a Sutro Tower print to the bass drum. Who doesn’t want custom stuff?

shiny snare

The cleaned up snare drum and its original stand. Cleaned up like a dream.

armbefore

The rack tom arm before its bath in dishwashing liquid and Bar Keeper’s Friend.

arm after

The rack tom arm after its bath in dishwashing liquid and Bar Keeper’s Friend.

pieces bar keeper

Everything came off and got a bath. Keeping everything labeled clearly was a must.

snare before

Here’s the snare mechanism before.

snare after

Here it is after.

lugs comparison

Here are two lugs, the before on the left and the after on the right. I used Flitz metal polish on all the lugs. They’re still a little pitted and there’s still some chipped paint on this old kit but I think it’s ok to show that it’s not perfect. It’s been played too much to be perfect.

Ludwig 1965 Drum Kit – Before

Posted by on Feb 18, 2014 in BLOG | No Comments

My dad had this drum kit sitting in his garage. He told me I could have it years ago but I always fly home and have been unable to bring it back with me. Plus, I don’t really have a place to put it. Well, I managed to solve both of those problems by making a drive down to Los Angeles and by having a friend who is a musician and who also just happens to have space for such a drum kit to live. It’s a 1965 Ludwig kit and I’m not entirely sure but I think it’s a Downbeat (black diamond pearl finish) with a Supraphonic snare drum. I took the last week and did my best to restore this kit so that it can be played again, as it should be. Anyway, here are the “before” pictures and I’ll post the “after” pictures next week. It is with a heavy heart that I must admit that as a teenager, I destroyed the original bass drum pedal. That, one bass drum rim and the hi-hat stand are all that keeps this set from being wholly original. Maybe in time, I’ll save up and make it whole again.

snare stripped

I stripped all the drums down to the shells.

ludwig dirty

Dirty!

ludwig snare

Rusty!

ludwig rusty

So rusty!

ludwig dusty

Dusty!

ludwig tom head

One of the drums still had it’s original head!

Store Field Trip

Posted by on Feb 11, 2014 in BLOG | No Comments

I took last week off and visited my parents in Southern California. While my mom and I were on our way to the Norton Simon, we stopped at a store in San Gabriel that sells The Heated dish towels called Alexandra’s Table. You can get so much more than dish towels at Alexandra’s Table though. You can buy lunch and a few other packaged foods (salted caramel, jams and olive oil, to name a few). So, if you’re in the neighborhood, they’re located at 413 South Mission Street, San Gabriel, California 91776.

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Cute little shopping center. I love the Mission style.

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I love the little display they made for my dish towels!

alextablemenu

Here’s the menu of the day. Yes, please!

alextablegoods

Other delicious stuff you can get.

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Also, you should note that they received an “A” grade. Los Angelenos know what I’m talking about.