Designer’s Favorite Things

A great designer realizes the beauty in someone else’s work. Here, Steve McCallion, creative director, Ziba Design and Clive Wilkinson, founder, Clive Wilkinson Architects, both share some of their favorites.


Nike Oregon Series watch ($99):
“A great combination of sport, business, and rock ‘n’ roll. Only Nike can pull that off.”

Sony PSP ($199):
“Combine the Sony PSP with noise cancellation headphones, and you can shave three hours off that cross –country flight.”

2007 Airstream 75th Anniversary 19″ trailer ($37,375 – $62, 850):
“It’s like a SoHo loft, but mobile. Park this on the beach, catch a fish a day, and you’re set.”

More of McCallion’s Favorite Things:

  • Logitech Noise Canceling headphones
    “Finally, noise-canceling headphones that don’t make you look like a pilot! There’s no better way to deal with the crying infant in 13b.”
  • Sony Cyber-shot DSC-T30/B Digital Camera
    “Inspiration can come anytime, anywhere. That’s why I carry an ulta compact digital camera in my pocket all the time. Sony’s is small enough and cool enough to go everywhere.”
  • Apple MacBook (black)
    “Finally, a mid-level laptop from Apple that doesn¹t make you feel like a 12-year-old girl. Beautifully detailed.”
  • Muji sketchbook (195mm x 184mm)
    “Just what a sketchbook needs to be–nothing more and nothing less. Its proportions are reminiscent of traditional sketchbooks. Smooth, empty pages sit between a simple, but inspiring craft paper cover. You can choose to leave the outside generic or personalize it. A red ribbon marks your latest brainstorm. A product whose meaning is defined by what it becomes. Notable because of its restraint. “
  • KitchenAid Pro Series Line Waffle Baker
    “How do you keep a pack of 10-year-old girls happy on Sunday morning? With the perfect waffle. KitchenAid brings commercial waffle making technology into the home. Rotating the iron while cooking makes the perfect morning.”
  • Design Within Reach
    “Making design classics accessible to everyone. Together with Target and IKEA, DIY is helping to democratize design in America.”
  • Ellsworth Truth
    “The performance of a hard-tail with the smoothness of a full-suspension mountain bike. Stiff on the climbs, plush on the descent. Ride like a 23-year-old again and live to talk about it.”
  • BMW 650
    “Safe sex. The best manifestation of BMW’s new design language.”

Clive Wilkinson’s Favorite Things

Sonos Digital Music System ($1,247):
“Each unit is basically a receiver and amplifier; all work together wirelessly from one computer – but independently – it’s an incredible invention.”


Frank Gehry’s Red Beaver chair ($4,350):
“Gehry’s cardboard furniture was a paradigm shift. And to do a whole suite of furniture in cardboard was kind of revolutionary.

Nicole Farhi dinner plates ($45 – $52):
“I’ve spent years looking for the hand-thrown dinner plate, and I’ve found it – undecorated and extremely subtle.”

More of Wilkinson’s Favorite Things:

  • Blackberry
    “The perfect small keyboard.”
  • Toyota Prius
    “For low environmental impact.”
  • The fluorescent tube
  • Apple 30″ monitor, Apple iPod
  • Google Home page and Adwords
    “No surplus and visual economy.”
  • The touch latch
    “So we can have doors without pulls.”
  • Costume National boots
    “Clothing that feels like a colleague.”