Flynn & King product line

We are swooning over Flynn&King‘s line of natural skincare. Their multitasking products are made in small batches using ingredients you can recognize and pronounce. Ready to upgrade your daily regime? Here’s their powerhouse Revive, Balance, and Replenish trio of cleanser, toner and oil.

Flynn & King natural face oil, toner and cleanser

Flynn & King Detox Charcoal soap

Flynn&King is run by Summer Dinh Manske and Corina McDonnell. The duo started making their own products to address their skincare needs, and the small production grew from there to a full line of gorgeous, safe and effective products we’d love to get for ourselves or give as gifts. Summer tells us about their beginnings as a skincare club, their vision and process, and their favorite spots around Bed Stuy.

flynn-and-king-corina-summer

A little trivia about yourselves
– Born & raised: born Saigon / raised southern California
– Cups of coffee a day: cups or pots?
– Currently reading: Saga, Deluxe Edition Written by Brian K Vaughan and Illustrated by Fiona Staples (comic book)
– Currently listening to: The Weeknd
– Favorite pizza place: ask Corina 😉
– Hidden talent: I’ve been told I can carry a tune.
– If I didn’t do what I do, I would be a… Professional French Fry Enthusiast or Mars Colonizer.

What inspired you to start your business? When did you guys start?

We both worked at a pretty popular salon / apothecary in Williamsburg that specialized in curating the coolest and newest hair and beauty products. There, we carried a variety of great natural skin care brands and learned a lot about exotic ingredients that made their products special. Though we loved some of these brands, some ingredients used were not natural. We felt that there was an easier way to produce great all natural skin care using only the stuff Mother Nature created.

Corina and I were enthused at the idea and started a skin care club where we learned about natural ingredients and how to make safe and effective skin care. We made products targeted for ourselves, friends, and family’s needs and found it to be super effective, not to mention the fact they smell amazing. We’ve been clubbin’ since 2013 and from then on, our club is going strong and eventually became Flynn&King in 2014.

flynn-and-king-process-2

What is your production process like, from concept to finished product?

The first step in producing a product is to troubleshoot a problem that needs to be addressed. Our products were made because we couldn’t find the perfect product to address both our needs. With Summer having problems like seborrheic dermititis and combination skin and Corina with problems like dry acneic skin and eczema, we kind of had our work cut out for us. Almost like Goldilocks and the 3 bears, it seemed like the skin care market was saturated with products that were meant for only one skin type or another; too oily, too dry, too boring, too clean, not clean enough, etc.

Being practical and money conscientious Capricorns, we wanted to make products that are multifunctional for our New York lives. Nobody likes a bathroom filled with 30 different products for 30 different problems. We don’t have the time or room for that. We were both used to using 12+ products for a normal skin care regimen, but after long research, we came up with some products we think are multifunctional and effective for most, if not all, skin types, reducing our daily skin care products to just a few. Saving time and money is what we’re all about.

flynn-and-king-process

What are you planning for the next few months?

Flynn&King’s calendar is filled with so many fun projects to last us all year! We’re working with some really amazing organizations that better the world, hosting natural DIY workshops, showcasing at Brooklyn Holiday Bazaar 😉 , and maybe a few new products up our sleeves, I don’t know. You’ll just have to follow us on social media to find out. 🙂

What do you know now that you wish you knew when you started?

I wish we had done this sooner! This line of business we’re in is terribly addictive. We love every aspect of this work from production of our line to the people we’ve connected with. The necessity to solve skin care problems naturally is an exciting challenge that continues to push us to our limits.

What neighborhood are you guys in? What are your favorite spots?

Corina and I both live in Bedstuy.

Fav. brunch / casual business meet up: Black Swan (crazy amazing Bloody Mary’s and great beer selection)
Fav. snack shack / coffee digs: Brooklyn Kolache Company (yummy mix of sweet and savory kolaches)
Fav. Sunday treat: Dough (Best, fluffiest, dreamiest, yeast donuts. ::drool:: It’s really hard to pick a favourite. They’re all so good.)

flynn & king natural skincare products

Cheers to Flynn & King! You can shop the full skincare line at flynnandking.com. Don’t miss Summer and Corina in person at our upcoming Brooklyn Holiday Bazaar on Nov 28 & 29.

Rabbit and Dragon marbled cheese board

Rabbit and Dragon is a multidisciplinary studio founded by two creatives: ceramicist Mariko Tanaka and designer Izzy Lezcano. Their handmade goods range from textiles, ceramics, candles or paper goods. Their products are crafted to be functional and add a touch of clean modern design to our everyday lives. The designs are truly beautiful – they just make us smile.

Rabbit and Dragon color plates

Rabbit and Dragon indigo eye pillows

Mariko and Izzy love collaborating, yet they each have their preferred mediums. Mariko makes functional and unique ceramics from porcelain and stoneware. Izzy works with paper and textiles, mixing printing and dying techniques. Mariko tells us more about herself, the Rabbit and Dragon story, and their plans for the next few months.

Rabbit and Dragon - Mariko at work

A little trivia about yourself

– Born & raised: Izzy is originally from the UK, where she studied Landscape Architecture at Edinburgh College of Art, and has been living in NYC for the last 4 years.Mariko grew up on the West Coast and Tokyo and studied at Pratt Institute.
– Cups of coffee a day: 1 cup / cold brew iced coffee
– Currently reading: Werner Herzog, Of Walking in Ice
– Currently listening to: Caetano Veloso
– Favorite pizza place: Lucali’s
– Hidden talent: mixologist
– If I didn’t do what I do, I would be a… horticulturalist on a farm somewhere raising a pack of alpacas.

What inspired you to start your business? When did you start?

Rabbit & Dragon launched in the spring of 2014, and started originally as a collaborative project with myself producing functional ceramics and Izzy Lezcano creating hand dyed textiles and paper goods. We were inspired to create one of a kind, beautifully crafted works with a modern and minimalist aesthetic.

What is your production process like, from concept to finished product?

My ceramics are hand built, wheel thrown or slip cast in stoneware or porcelain. I take inspiration from a Japanese design philosophy, which embodies simplicity, asymmetry, and subtlety, in creating these one of kind pieces. I work out the geometry of the lines and curves and keep things clean and polished. I design and sculpt my ceramic pieces for weeks or months experimenting with different techniques and styles of glazes until I can get to the final product. The dinnerware and plates are all painted or drawn by hand.

Rabbit and Dragon ceramics

What are you planning for the next few months?

I’ve been working on a new line of ceramic cheese boards, mixing dark and white clays bodies to create a natural clay patterned effect. Each one is unique and makes for an exceptional presentation for cheeses or hors d’oeuvres and perfect for the holidays.

We also collaborated to create a new line of beautiful dinnerware plates made by imprinting one of Izzy’s hand cut lino print of botanical design onto clay, which will be presented at the Brooklyn Holiday Bazaar.

Rabbit and Dragon cheese plant plates

Rabbit and Dragon Shibori Wall Hanging

Rabbit and Dragon mini cheese board

What do you know now that you wish you knew when you started?

Definitely don’t forget to reach out and connect with other creatives for networking and advice. Be flexible to the changing needs of the marketplace and open to considering new opportunities, especially these days many are online. Social media is also a fantastic platform for people to find and see your work.

What are your favorite neighborhood spots?

I’m in Williamsburg. La Superior is a tried and true favorite for their street style tacos and their margaritas are fantastic. Donna for their happy hour frozen cocktails.

Cheers to Rabbit and Dragon! You can shop the full collection at rabbitanddragon.bigcartel.com. Don’t miss Mariko in person at our upcoming Brooklyn Holiday Bazaar.

card-taxi

Now that’s a card that won’t end up in the recycling bin. At NoDá Design Studio they are inspired by the combination of technology and hand-finished items, which in their case results in beautiful laser-cut products with a lot of detail and personality. Sounds fun, right? How about a game of tic tac toe?

tic-tac-toe

Carolina Noborikawa and Esteban Dávila design and produce their unique home goods, greeting cards, games and accessories in their Flatbush studio. They mainly work with sustainable wood and other eco-friendly materials. “We think it’s a great way to incorporate our design into our society while reducing the use natural resources. We’ve also decided to use non-toxic stains and finishes in our products. The reasons being that some of our products’ end user may include children, and it also allows us to work from our home studio while preserving our indoor air quality.

sun-mirror

We love the intricate detail that they’re able to achieve with the precision of the laser. We have our eye on these stunning coasters:

noda-coasters-original

Don’t miss NoDá Design Studio at our upcoming Brooklyn Holiday Bazaar on December 14th. You can shop online at Laser Eye Shop.

If you have a furry four-legged-friend, you need to meet Little Barkster. This line of fun pet products includes cool handmade dog toys inspired by NYC’s iconic foods. I present you, the Puppy Pretzel, Donut, Hot Dog, and a Macaron chew duo that looks straight out of a fancy patisserie.

little barkster hot dog

little-barkster-pretzel

little-barkster-donut

little barkster macaron

Designer Linda Holm started the company out as a response to a curveball that life threw at her. Because what’s a better weapon to get us through challenging times than to devote ourselves to what really inspires us? Linda tells us about those early days, her design process, and her favorite spots in Park Slope.

What made you take the leap and launch Little Barkster?
I have wanted to design dog products for the last 10 years. I had however very time consuming full-time jobs with childrenswear design for 8 years. Summer of 2013 I found myself in a new situation that had never occurred to me before: unemployed. Most people panic at that thought, I simply digged out a stack of sketch & idea books I had been keeping around with things I wanted to do when I had time. I started making products and launched my Etsy store in October 2013 and things started taking off in January 2014.

Do you sketch out ideas, or work on the computer? How is the process from idea to play?
I’m very much a computer person when it comes to design….. However when it comes to my dog products it’s a different story. I usually write down and do a quick sketch in my sketchbook for an idea that comes to mind. If I do not write it down I will most likely be forgotten a few hours later and I have moved on to something else.

When I do find time, I start making a pattern on my computer for the product I’m planning to make, look for fabrics, make a prototype and try it out on my dog, Gordon. I usually don’t like my first prototypes. Size, look, fabric choices, how Gordon reacts with a product – all comes into play. Then I make adjustments and after some back and forth I finally have a product that I like and it ends up in my Etsy store.

What are your plans for Little Barkster for the next few months?
I have 20 more dog products I want to add. They are all designed, just need to make the product. I have however been very busy making orders and I’m looking into finding a local manufacturer that can make products for me. At some point I want to also go into wholesale and add additional product categories.

Little Barkster has been a little bit in the shadow for the moment though, as I’m in the process of setting up my own babywear company too.

What’s your dog’s favorite toy?
Gordon loves all the toys that I have created for him. He changes from day to day what he likes. Sometimes he just loves Litte Barkster’s Pizza, busy digging it down in our garden to make sure that no one steals it. Other days he just lays on the couch testing how many times he can use the squeaker of a Little Barkster Donut. I have a very playful dog, therefore the reason to constantly design new toys.

What are your favorite neighborhood spots?
My husband and I love Talde, Al Di La and Piccoli Trattoria. We just discovered Pickle Shack too and tried out Calexico. So many good places around Prospect Park! The list of favorite places is very long.

Check out Little Barkster’s Etsy Shop for more cool products for your best bud.

We met the duo behind Brooklyn Bar Body & Bath at our Holiday Bazaar last year and fell in love with their fabulous skincare line – and their infectious enthusiasm.

Lifelong friends Joann Montalto and Itala Pelizzoli launched their natural skincare business to give a fresh, natural alternative to products that pack a long list of unpronounceable ingredients. As we become more conscious about what we put in our bodies, we should also pay close attention to what we put on them, right?

Based in Dyker Heights, they produce a range of small-batch natural skincare products that are just outstanding.

so-shea-body-butter

Their So Shea body butter packs an incredible moisturizing power with a light texture. We’re also big fans of their lip balms (coconut + lemongrass, anyone?) and are excited to be offering their pampering soaps on our shop.

The pampering soaps set includes three fabulous bars: Lemongrass (soothing), Lavender (moisturizing) and Bergamot & Grapefruit (exfoliating). Like all Brooklyn Bar Body & Bath products, they use just a handful of natural ingredients. Each soap bar is individually wrapped with biodegradable material.

Joann and Itala tell us a little more about the start of the business – and what product they’re not leaving without this Summer.

When was Brooklyn Bar Body & Bath officially launched?
After a year and a half of research and product developing​ w​e received our license and ​ launched​ our ​business in November 2013.

​What made you guys take the leap and start your own business?​
​We are creative and love natural products for body and bath, so we started with bar soaps and were inspired to do more. We loved the results so we wanted to share with others.

​What do you know now that you wish you had known when you started?
It’s alright to change things around even after it took long to finalize.

​If you could only take one product on a trip with you, which one would you choose?
“Bitter Balm​”. It’s our natural insect repellent… and it truly works!

What would you pick as a gift for a friend? ​
Our Exfoliating Shea Butter bar soap in Rosemary Lavender w/ Cornmeal​ and a jar of “So Shea Body Butter” in Tropic!

What are your favorite spots in your neighborhood?​
Pastosa Ravioli for Italian goods, Luna Park in Coney Island, the beautiful strip of Shore Road by the Hudson River and of course walking around Dyker Heights anytime, especially during the Holiday Lights!

You can find Brooklyn Bar Body & Bath at local markets. Don’t miss them at our upcoming Brooklyn Holiday Bazaar on December 14th! Head over to their Facebook page to keep track of upcoming events.

I am so excited to introduce you to Foxy & Winston. This boutique design shop hails from Red Hook, just a few blocks from the water. I have this major soft spot for nautical themes, probably a consequence of having grown up far from the water in central Spain. Tugboats in particular get extra points. We may soon rename this blog Brooklyn Tugboats.

notecard set - tugboat by foxy & winston

organic cotton kitchen towel - tugboat by foxy & winston

organic cotton napkin - tugboat by foxy & winston

Needless to say, there is way more to Foxy & Winston than lovely tugboat notecards, organic cotton kitchen towels, and organic cotton napkin sets. Designer Jane Buck takes inspiration “from a love of animals and nature, with a spot of humor thrown in for good measure”.

notecard set - ladybug by foxy & winston

organic cotton kitchen towel - anchor by foxy & winston

Jane studied Fashion and Textiles in Nottingham and Leeds, UK. Her brand name is a tribute to her parents. Since 2009, she’s been a big part of the Red Hook community, where she keeps her shop and studio.

notecard set - succulent by foxy & winston

organic cotton napkin - artichoke by foxy & winston

You can find Foxy & Winston’s lovely textiles and paper goods on “>their website. You can also visit their shop & studio in Red Hook at 392 Van Brunt St.