I know, I know.

“it’s November already”…. and now it’s March.

We have been busy I assure you of that. We moved house AGAIN (still in Sydney), Dani has a new collection designed and sampled, we produced a beautiful lookbook for it that I’ll be excited to share with everyone in a little while when the range is ready to be released, and I made some 3D printed shoes in a collaboration with Audrey Thomas-Hayes for VAMFF… on top of us both having other jobs and travelling to Melbourne and Adelaide.

So, no pictures today except for this one… more soon when I get time and we get an internet connection at home!

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STAY STRONG PEOPLE, keep on striving towards those goals. They will almost always seem impossible, but that’s the whole point.

If it was easy, everyone would be doing it.

November Already

Hi gang, by now it’s possible that no one is reading these posts any more, but recently I had a bit of a ‘what the fuck am I doing’ moment and it was actually quite helpful to revisit this blog as somewhat of a diary for the last 4 years and see exactly what I / we did… and that helped with the feelings over being overwhelmed now that we’re almost 4 years into the big 5 year plan.

As you may know, Dani and I have recently moved to Sydney, so now it seems the Dead & Buried team / concept / soul is spread over two cities with the actual studio space still humming along in Melbourne and us two in a new city, making new friends, doing new things and making new challenges. There is a possibility that Dead & Buried II will start up here in 2014, but we need to be sure it’s worth the time and effort as part of our new outlook and set of priorities.

In a nuthshell we’re up here mostly due to me taking on a job as a User Experience Designer – which admittedly was pretty out-of-left-field when I took it on, but it seems its a position that suits me perfectly, designing things that make life easier for people which is essentially what I’ve done my whole life when given the chance – but we are also hoping to capitilise on some of the drive, business savviness and dollars that Sydney is all about.

We love Melbourne for it’s DIY attitude, but it started to seem like we were trapped in a cycle of ‘earn a little, spend it all again’ and it didn’t seem likely that it would be a path that would take us and our products to the world. The move to NYC is still my #1 driving goal that gets me out of bed each morning, so taking the opportunity to move cities was too good to pass up.

So, at the moment Dani is busting ass making 10 times more work than she has ever made to hopefully sell out of at the Big Design Market in Melbourne early December. I’ve officially shelved my fashion/shoe stuff for ANOTHER few months, as we cant realistically launch a label, work full time and make market stock all at once … so like a big chess game, we’ve made a strategic plan to smash through 2013 and get on with things in 2014.

Dani also has a PR agency now, so we are currently making a lookbook for her latest collection, I’ll put some images up here next week when it’s released. VERY EXCITING.

I could rattle on all day, and there are lots of projects that have happened over the last 6 months that haven’t had much love, but for now here’s a quick summary :

- The visors I made for Christina Exie are currently travelling the world with her, recently getting a showing at Vancouver Fashion Week and MSFW, as well as appearing in a magazine editorial here in Australia.

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- I did some top secret work for Dion Lee earlier in the year for his NYFW show. I helped out with some 3D generated terrains that made it in to this line of clothing. There might be more showing up in the future depending on if he / we are able to take it as far as we want to for next collection (the ideas he has are pretty amazing)

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- My 3D printer moved up here with us and I printed out this mammoth piece for my pal Soren. He is going to get it cast from magnesium to replace a part on a vintage race car that he is restoring… pretty awesome being able to use modern tech to make things that would be otherwise impossible to source.

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- Dani has over run our new house with jewellery. Here’s some shots of it all… we strive for a minimalist lifestyle, but there’s always something creative going on that fills up the empty tables (and we love it that way)

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- As I mentioned, I’ve been helping Dani with her lookbook. She managed to arrange a beautiful looking photoshoot with a week’s notice and now I’m back at home doing retouching on a dozen images. Here’s a teaser, more to come soon…

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I’m sure there’s more, but for now that’ll have to do.

Oh, and I just watched these 3 videos – which reminded me how much I loved our old studio and made me happy to know that there are other people out there like us who are 100% committed to doing whatever it takes and making whatever they need to get the job done.

GIZMODO – The Wildly Functional Studio of Video Wizard Casey Neistat, Part 1 from Gizmodo on Vimeo.

I found it comforting to be watching a video about someone’s resourceful studio space, whilst in a space that I’ve managed to squeeze in to a wasted corner of our house, where everything has it’s place and everything makes sense.

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Thanks for reading, who knows where this journey will go, but at a bare minimum it has to make for an interesting book one day when allllll these twists and turns are put back to back as “The story of Dead & Buried, New York’s most beloved retail space”… ha!

 

 

MakerBot News

Hey peeps, just a quick bit of news that I thought i’d pass on to our readers as I’m assuming by now a bunch of you are at least somewhat interested in where 3D printing meets fashion…

http://www.makerbot.com/blog/2013/09/06/makerbot-explorers-francis-bitontis-new-skins/

… the most interesting bit (to me) is the mention of “MakerBot Flexible Filament, a polyester-based material that’s coming soon” …. flexible filament + chainmail sort of 3d models = knitted / fabric wearable shoe uppers. Combined with solid heels and platforms it seems like I will be able to print out some wearable shoes before the end of the year! exciting! particularly now that I have the printer in our living room here in Sydney and I have plenty of evenings free to use it. More blog posts coming soon!!

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Nicholas Building Open Studios 2013

It’s on again! We’re opening the doors to our studio/shop at the end of the month as part of the Nicholas Building Open Studios. There’ll be limited edition jewellery to buy from our studio pals, and (if all goes to plan) a pop up space filled with clothing as part of MSFW which starts the next day. Christina Exie is putting together a collection of labels to display their goods in our humble little shop for the week.

So pop in for a look, and if you’re around later on Friday we’ll stay around for a drink before Dani and I jet off to Sydney!

I will have to hand over control of this blog and the Instagram account to the studio crew so you can continue to get updates from the studio space, i’ll be the roving reporter bringing news from the scene up here…. (and possibly from Dead & Buried II if we set one up in Sydney!)

Change(s) for the better

Hey D&B readers, at the risk of being one of those blogs that keeps saying “sorry for the lack of posts” whilst the site just dies off and tumbleweeds blow by and spiderwebs start forming on the menu… Sorry for the lack of posts!

I’ve been in Sydney pretty much all week for the last 2 months, but things are looking up. Dani and I have leased a house there, so no more living in hotels for me, and we have secured a few new studio buddies so Dead & Buried will begin a new chapter with more people working here.

I’ll put some names, photos and stories up soon of the new crew in here.

Oh, and the 3D printer has been churning out shoe parts for Audrey again… check it out!

May!

“…Here’s hoping May doesn’t suck as much as April.”

You know what? IT DIDN’T SUCK AS MUCH AS APRIL. Yessssss.

Team Dead & Buried was a bit all over the place during May – Elise moved out, Katia moved out (both because they were handed free studio spaces and that’s hard to beat in this economy) and we will miss them both immensely. Karlee moved in, then got offered a studio of her own almost next door to us after being on the waiting list at the Nicholas Building for almost a year, so she’s moving out too…

…how is this all not sucky bad news you ask? Well, for a starter we just handed some keys to Megan Webb who will be our new studio buddy, and we’ve been talking to a few other people about the last space available.

But the mood lifting has been mostly due to me being offered one of those once-in-a-lifetime jobs that came at EXACTLY the right time, and thus has lifted our spirits no end. I’m now out of the 3D rendering industry and am working 5 days a week in Sydney at a User Experience Design firm called Neo, run by my old best pal Michelle – who you might remember I made some green wedding shoes for last year.


^ that’s my new boss. What a babe/boss.

Her business has gone bananas and she’s hooked me up with a sweeeeet package to entice me to get on board. It’s been years since I was employed as an actual “designer” so it’s great to be back drawing, thinking and generally getting paid to have an opinion on everything, like I do naturally. This has removed the cloudy fog that was my future last month, and has given Dani and I some things to do / plan / save / setup for.

The renewed plan is for me to work 5 days and earn some respectable cash for the first time in maybe 8 years, and that will allow both of us to invest in some helpers and manufacturers to get our brands off the ground without it taking another 3 years of manual labour.


…something like this?

Dani M Designs and goodlyGOLD are in the process of getting a web-overhaul = new sites, new online stores, and I have a 2 stage process planned to get some ACTUAL SHOES MADE AND FOR SALE FOR GOD DAMN ONCE. More on that next month, but it’s pretty exciting.

We’ll be keeping the studio space humming over the next few months whilst I travel up and back, and then maybe… maybe… we’ll move to Sydney for a year, but we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it and we definitely wont be giving up our studio, we’ll just get a few more people in and fly back and forward like design jetsetters.

So, I’m in a hotel room now using their wifi and am planning an evening of blog trawling to gather some references for a new fashion label / shoe thing that is in the works, and also doing some sums to make sure I can deliver 3D printed visors to Christina Exie’s customers if they happen to order any! Eeek.


image from http://www.colourmedang.com/

Anyhoot, that’s the news in brief for anyone reading. There’ll be more to see this year now that we have a plan (and will soon have helpers to blog about things on our behalf) so lets all hope for D&B to return to it’s glory days of weekly 40+ photo posts!!

Madeline, if you’re reading this its been a year since you were here! What. The. Fuck. That’s too long. Come back for a visit.

Listening to : Goat, Cashmere Cat, Gucci Mane. over and over and over.

April = Ups and F*cking Downs

Hey there loyal readers (blog stats tell me it is still a few more people than our parents and Madeline and Hili that read this blog so I’ll keep talking as if it’s a captivated audience of 1000s)… April has certainly turned out to be the biggest rollercoaster of a month for me/us in hmmm… 7 years? Strangely enough EXACTLY 7 years ago, almost to the day from this year’s ups and downs, Dani and I got married and my previous business dissolved in a flash of rage and we found ourselves in one hell of a happy/sad headtrip. Seems April is cursed for us, we’d better watch out in April 2020… that sounds ominous.

I wont ramble on too much about the goings on of the month, but I do believe in open-book honesty, as that’s what this blog has always been about, so I dont want anyone out there who is / has / will go through tough times as an artist or creative person to think that it’s all smooth sailing here and we’re just posting up photos and exclamation marks when things go well, that’s what Instagram is for.

To start on a good note – WE WENT TO MERCEDES BENZ FASHION WEEK AND IT WAS COOL. Dani and I made the accessories for Christina Exie’s debut runway show, and it rocked the house. We spent the week soaking up some Sydney sun and helping Christina with the million and one tasks she had to do leading up to the show, we ate gelato and sushi, we arrived backstage 3 hours before the show and got to see the madness that goes on when trying to get 10 models styled, dressed and ready to walk a runway.

It was in no way without drama, there were some serious last minute hiccups to work around and I hope to do a post on all of the details of that adventure soon, but for now, here’s a quick preview of what we made and how it looked on the runway.


my 3D printed visors…

 
dani’s resin cast bangles…


the collection.

all images from zimbio.com

I was planning on doing a classic making of sort of post on these, but as I’m now thinking of going in to production with the visors asap I might wait a bit before I swing open the doors and give away all my trade secrets and intellectual property. Our friends at DI$COUNT have been ripped off royally recently by some dipshits in Sydney, so you cant really trust anyone these days it seems.

This was definitely one of the “ups” for April, and it was a great way to further our working relationship with Christina, meet a bunch of new people and get something seen outside of Melbourne.

That said, it lead me, and to a much lesser extent Dani, to crash out completely with post-event adrenalin and motivation loss. I’ve been trying to distract myself from the reality that I have somewhat ‘run out of steam’ since early January, and now that the outlook is on another year of hard work and determination all I want to do is pop into bed for a 6 month sleep.


this is what my plans for 2013 look like in my head at the moment.

All of our plans are so damned lofty that every now and then the weather changes or something sad happens and it’s hard not to just say “fuck it, I’m done with this shit”… but that’s the key to success. Knowing that those times will come and getting your ass off the couch and back in the saddle.

The sad event that came within 3 days of us arriving home from Sydney was the news that our friend and fellow creative hotshot-in-the-making Maya died of cancer at age 27. It’s making me choke up a little typing this so I’ll move on, but we are devastated to have lost her so early and hope that the good we can take from it is the motivation for us – and anyone reading this – to SEIZE THE DAY. Get out there and live your dreams as you have no idea when your time will be up.

Maya, you were awesome, and will never be forgotten.

So… ups and downs huh? How about having a new niece born 3 days after Maya passed? Is that up and down enough for you? Faaaaark.

We welcomed our new heartbreaker Olivia to the world on Monday and she is tiny and beautiful and quiet and possibly a redhead. I am in love already of course.

So… it’s now a public holiday, I’m in the studio typing away trying to get my mojo back, and hopefully…. hopefully, I’ll be blog posting this year with a new stream of stories about shoes and studios and manufacturing.

It seems the most financially sensible path for me (and Dani too) to take is for us to look at getting help with our brands so that we can break this exhausting cycle of trying to design, make and market everything all by hand. It works on a tiny turnover scale, but if we want to make these businesses actual “businesses” then that means working with a team, PR, marketing, bookkeeping, manufacture etc etc.

We just need to work out how to incorporate that into our Dead & Buried dream of integrated retail and manufacture, and how, when and where it will make sense for us to head in the next year or two – with the long term goal still being a home and life in ol’ Manhattan. Woo.

The other “up” for the month was getting to film a quick fashion film for Dani’s brand to launch her new resin jewellery range. We managed to get the brain-meltingly hot and cool Maximus Po to turn up at a photographic studio and dance her assssss off for an hour or two, whilst I directed and our friends Christian and Kik documented the whole thing. Below is a quick edit teaser film that I put together before Sydney… there’ll be a bigger and better and sexier one coming soon, once Christian and I get a chance to get back together and do some editing magic.

Dani M vs Maximus Po | Teaser Film from danimdesigns on Vimeo.

Oh, and one last thing, I made some postcards to give away whilst in Sydney and was lucky enough to have Jeannine Tan allow me to use one of her photos. She has a killer eye for photography and colour ranges that I am super envious of, so I am verrrry excited about working with her in the future to get the “look” for my brand just right. Go have a look at her site > www.jeanninetan.com

So that’s a wrap.
Here’s hoping May doesn’t suck as much as April.

 

March update…

Seems I / we don’t find the time to do much blogging these days – mainly because we dont have an internet connection at home – so here’s a dump of what’s going on. Ideally Dani or I will get an intern / assistant / PA this year and we can put them in charge of all this social media stuff……. not enough time!!

Rather than a big wordy story, lets cut straight to the pics :

Dani finished her collaborative project / art installation with Milly Flemming and got it all installed at the last minute at Craft Victoria for the Signature Style exhibition. We should get some profesh shots done, but for now here’s my iPhone snaps from the night.

  

Lots of porcelain, copper, enamel, silver and hard work.

3D printer has been working overtime – finally seeming like it’s worth all that $$.

I assisted Audrey make another collection of shoes, this time for Penthouse Mouse as part of LMFF. She arrived back in Melbourne from a 3 month holiday one week before the show started and explained to me her idea of ‘finding rocks that look like heels’…. of course I said ‘yeah, that’s going to take forever, why dont we just PRINT OUT A ROCK SHAPED HEEL’… and that’s what we did.

A quick briefing on what she wanted, an hour of her hovering whilst I nerded it up and 12 hours of print time (all settings on highest quality) = 2 rocks that work as heels.

She resin molded them and knocked up 3 pairs of shoes in 4 days.


Instagram photo of 2 pairs stolen from Bern. Soz Bern.

The other 3D projects that are on the go are accessories for Christina Exie’s debut runway show at Sydney Fashion Week in April.

Dani is making resin cast jewellery – for which I 3D modelled and scaled up an existing design of hers…

then she went on to tidy it up and prep it for casting

Audrey paid us back for all the assistance by being our resin casting intern for a few days…

sampling colours, getting things right…


and production begins!

I’m also making visors that have a lace / basketweave sort of design going on… but more on them when they’re actually done.


big ones, like this.

Oh, and you know what’s cool? When you need a replacement part or new filament holding spindle for your 3D printer and you can just PRINT IT OUT from files online… awesome.

… and lastly, not everything goes to plan, this is what happens when your object falls over 90% of the way through printing, so the extruder just keeps on pumping out plastic for 20 mins into the air. Kind of cool, kind of annoying.


… thats the object underneath there… booooo.

So much other stuff going on, Karlee has moved in to our old shop space and set up her tailoring business there (we might reopen in a ground level shop later this year) Amber and Katia both had work on show as part of LMFF, Elise got accepted in to RMIT honours, Yaz is having her work stocked at Craft Vic, I went to soundwave, I made a corporate video for LOTS of cash to fund my shoe samples, I’ve also been helping out on Laura Imbruglia’s filmclip which is a Teen Wolf inspired masterpiece….

Fuck, that’s enough for now… see you round.

Listening to : Ghost (best band at Soundwave by far) and Flume and Cashmere Cat << highly recommended, have a listen. Next level tunes.

 

3D print time

hey gang, I have (literally) 10 mins until the last tram leaves so i’ll be brief.

The 3D printer is WORKING LIKE A DREAM. I’ve been able to print out various trinkets, test objects, bits of junk… and now finally some real objects.

Below are some images that I’ve been taking as I print various things out. I haven’t been documenting this stuff as thoroughly as the shoemaking as 50% of the things I print are shit, or I stop them half way etc. These are some of the more successful attempts.

First prints of 1:1 heels


I have modelled up a last in 3D studio MAX (and also another better version in Rhino) and this is one of the many heel shapes that I have been working on. This shows my plans for an interlocking cantilever / wedge component that allows me to have more severe angles on the front edge of the heel and retain strength.

As I have the shoe last modelled, it’s easy to print out mini 1:2 scale shoes!

the rough textured ‘cage’ on this model is the support structure that the printer creates to hold up thin or overhanging components. It snaps off easily as it’s not actually attached to the object, just sitting 1mm away from it all over.


This is one of my ideas for a heel / wedge with a cavity. Much easier to test this way than making one from cork.

I’ve also printed out some even smaller 1:4 scale shoes. These will probably evolve into keyrings to come free with the shoes when they’re for sale.


A collection of bits and pieces on my shelf…


This pic shows a little of how the software saves materials. It prints a ‘shell’ of the object, then fills it with a set percentage of volume, in this case 10%, so the final object is more like a honeycomb filled easter egg than a solid plastic chunk. You can set it to do 100% infill, but in most cases other than a structural part that’s just a waste of time and resources.

Today I printed out a 1:1 insole shape from my 3D model to test for fit.

It looks like I need to adjust some curves across the bottom plane of the last so the insole isnt touching on the high spot at the ball of the foot, but the scale is correct. woooo. Next up is a snug fitting insole, then from there it’s pretty easy to make up a snug fitting platform… and that’s where the crazy stuff starts happening.

 


Nerdstation.


another shot of the 10% infill idea + this one has a ‘raft’ at the bottom that makes the model stick to the base more evenly.

…and lastly, some actual prototypes for a local design firm, printed out for client presentations.
I’ll be selling print time soon, at something like $50 an object, unless its massive, then that’ll be $100. The price DOESN’T include me doing any 3D modelling, it just involves me receiving your print-ready STL file, setting it up to print at the most efficient settings, and then tidying it up at the end + plastic used.

If’ you’re interested, let me know.

Next non-shoe project up is making / printing some accessories for Christina Exie’s fashion show in Sydney! We’ll be up there for fashion week, swanning around, being scenesters.

ROCK ON.

Go Eloise!

Our pal Eloise has had a write up today in the Design Files, which means (without exaggerating) something like 30,000 people will have heard about her new brand Rapp as of today!

We were very happy to have been able to stock her scarves in our pop up store over summer, but alas, the store is packed up again for the autumn months whilst we regroup and restock with killer goodies. Look out for another Dead & Buried pop up this winter somewhere… maybe even on ground level this time instead of hidden 3 floors up!!

If you want to buy her scarves (which you should) head to her shop here >> http://rrrapp.bigcartel.com/