Rhonda's Typography Trip To Berlin

Loyal blog readers may have noticed that the Covet Garden team has been doing a bit of travelling recently: Jessica and Lynda have visited the sunny climes of California and Mexico and I've been to Germany twice in the last four months (and I'm going again next week).

Berlin is one of my favourite cities โ€” it has a rich history of course, but having to rebuild itself after WWII and post-communism reunification it has the energy of a much younger town. There are many ways that this manifests itself visually in many ways โ€” you can pretty much tell where the Berlin Wall once stood by following the trail of amazing, contemporary architecture. Graphically the typography of signage says a lot. Looking through my snaps I realized that there was hardly a serif in sight.

Here are some examples from around Berlin. Above is an old school selfie machine (I kid, it's a pet peeve about people that call every portrait a selfie now). In former East German neighbourhoods like the Mitte, these old timey photobooths abound. Below, trash cans implore you to give them your garbage.

Fun fact: The influential typographer and designer Erik Spiekermann is responsible for much of the look of the signage you see in train and subway stations. I fell into a long Speikermann-based internet K-hole while researching this post, and discovered that you can buy limited edition

I don't know why Berliners love San Serif typefaces so much. Maybe there's something about their driectness that helps guide its citizens through a city that is still in many ways split into East and West. Maybe its a way of distancing the present from the Gothic lettering preferred by the Nazi past. I have no answers.

One thing that everyone can agree on is that letterform is important to the people of Berlin. There's even a Museum dedicated to it โ€” The Buchstabenmuseum. There was an interesting article in The Guardian earlier this week about how typography in the transportation system serves as an unofficial timeline of Berlin.


Raising aWEARness

The School of Media & Design at Conestoga College in Kitchener is presenting its fifth annual aWEARness performance and Covet Garden is pleased to be back as a sponsor of this one-of-a-kind runway performance for the third year in a row.

We love exploring creativity and discovering new makers, designers and artists, which is why we're always glad to promote the efforts of the graduating class of Visual Merchandising Arts students. This year's theme is movement throughout time, and each student will be designing a costume that represents their idea of motion. The designers are also working with Broadcast Television students to produce an original video.

The event is always an energetic and visual treat, so if you're like us and want to support young talent, we encourage you to raise your awareness of aWearness. The show is at the Conrad Centre in Downtown Kitchener. Tickets are $20 and you can buy them here or at the door.


Best of Etsy: One Of A Kind

[1. Etsy (CA)">Grey and Black Wolf, Little Bellwoods; 2. La Elefant dress, Tove Troll; 3. Walnut Server, Craft Collective; 4. Soy Candle, Campy Home; 5. Canvas Lunch Bag, Prints and Needles; 6. Hardware Sterling Ring, Esther Chabot Bijoux.

One of the highlights of Covet Garden's calendar is the One of a Kind Show. Like seeing a robin, it's a sure sign that spring is just around the corner.

Once again, OOAK is featuring a special section of Etsy sellers at the show this season. This area will feature a treasure trove of handmade objects ranging from home decor to kids clothes. To give you a sneal peak of the some of the goodies that will be available, we've creatred a special Etsy treasury called One Of Kind to highlight some of the vendors who will be showcasing their wares at the show.

There will be much more to discover at OOAK. The next show is March 25th to 29th at the Direct Energy Centre. See you there!


Issue 54 is Now Live!

After taking February off to brainstorm future plans, this month's Covet Garden is coming in like a lionl! March’s featured homeowners Matt and Emilie have a strong sense of personal style. And they believe firmly in investing energy into things they believe in and it shows in their fun, unfussy space!

 Matt and Emilie love to travel, looking for one-of-a-kind vintage finds as well as discovering local craftspeople. And they share their treasure through their store, GoodFolk. In fact, finding a building where they could mix business with home was instrumental in finding their East End space.

Both Matt and Emilie come from a graphics background so they also like to share their talents. Check out Emilie's gorgeous tea towel, pictured below. And discover more visual delights in the new issue of Covet Garden!


Lynda in Mexico: Oaxaca Street Art

After spending some time in Oaxaca I've grown to not only love but also truly appreciate the street art that has taken root here. Much like revolution-era muralists, Diego Rivera and Jose Orozco, today’s Oaxacan street artists are attempting to reintegrate art into everyday life while sharing with the public some of the problems facing their people right now. 

The range of expression and the beauty of the messages are quite breathtaking. These murals are respected by the people and are enjoyed and contemplated on as the works of art not painted over like graffiti. Last year the Museum of Contemporary Art of Oaxaca paid homage to street artists with their exhibition entitled, "Made In Oaxaca" which featured a line-up of internationally known street and mural artists. Since then, the street art scene continues to grow with some restaurants and other local businesses have hired local artists to create work for their exterior and/or interiors. The feeling amongst street artists appears to be mutual: art should be free to view and the street is the largest free gallery there is.