Day 1

Product (RED)

(RED) was founded in 2006 by Bono and Bobby Shriver to harness the power of people and companies to help fight AIDS.

(RED) partners with the world’s most iconic brands that contribute up to 50% of profits from (RED)-branded goods and services to the Global Fund.

To date, (RED) has generated more than $500 million for the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, to support HIV/AIDS grants in Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Rwanda, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania and Zambia. 100 percent of that money goes to work on the ground – no overhead is taken. 

Global Fund grants that (RED) supports have impacted nearly 110 million people with prevention, treatment, counseling, HIV testing and care services.


Iola Modern's founders, Steven Ortego and Will Kleindienst, support Product (RED) because they are committed to raising awareness and funds to eliminate HIV and AIDS. Iola Modern is a sponsor of Charleston Pride and Will volunteers in Charleston at the Lowcountry Aids Services. We are excited to promote and contribute to this cause and its global reach. 

Day 2

Coffee

Coffee - helping us get through the day since forever. These coffee tools are some of Steven’s favorites and he’s excited to share them with you. 

  Alessi Pulcina Moka   Pulcina coffee maker, designed by Michele de Lucchi, is a revolutionary moka that combines the technology developed by illycaffè, using the design experience and manufacturing capabilities of Alessi, my former employer. Made of aluminium casting, Pulcina encapsulates a small but substantial design innovation: its shape that makes it possible to prepare a practically perfect coffee! Pulcina comes from a research entirely dedicated to the design and functionality of the espresso coffee maker. As a result of this study and the application of the technology developed by illycaffè, Pulcina is a high-performance coffee maker with a boiler that stops dispensing the drink at the right time before the coffee gets a bitter aftertaste. The perfect cup, made by you, at home.

Alessi Pulcina Moka

Pulcina coffee maker, designed by Michele de Lucchi, is a revolutionary moka that combines the technology developed by illycaffè, using the design experience and manufacturing capabilities of Alessi, my former employer. Made of aluminium casting, Pulcina encapsulates a small but substantial design innovation: its shape that makes it possible to prepare a practically perfect coffee! Pulcina comes from a research entirely dedicated to the design and functionality of the espresso coffee maker. As a result of this study and the application of the technology developed by illycaffè, Pulcina is a high-performance coffee maker with a boiler that stops dispensing the drink at the right time before the coffee gets a bitter aftertaste. The perfect cup, made by you, at home.

  Civil Stoneware Pourover   Pourover coffee starts with (freshly) ground coffee, a filter, and a filter holder, often called a ‘pourover.' At the most basic level, pourover brewing involves slowly pouring hot water over and through the grounds to extract the coffee flavors into your cup or serving vessel. I appreciate the relation between this most basic coffee tool, it’s humble use of material, Alabama clay, and it’s handicraft construction. Three tablespoons of ground coffee and you’re ready to brew!

Civil Stoneware Pourover

Pourover coffee starts with (freshly) ground coffee, a filter, and a filter holder, often called a ‘pourover.' At the most basic level, pourover brewing involves slowly pouring hot water over and through the grounds to extract the coffee flavors into your cup or serving vessel. I appreciate the relation between this most basic coffee tool, it’s humble use of material, Alabama clay, and it’s handicraft construction. Three tablespoons of ground coffee and you’re ready to brew!

  Stanley Thermos   We all know and love this one and the nostalgia it invokes every time we see one. I can still remember my great-grandfather (Iola’s husband) using his daily. And why not? They’ve stood the test of time!  Early uses for the Stanley bottle have included flying with the pilots on B-17s during  World War II , carrying human organs, transporting bull semen by the cattle industry, and accompanying crews on deep sea explorations. Today the bottle has been used for cooking noodles and hot dogs, transporting temperature-delicate medicines, and coffee.   

Stanley Thermos

We all know and love this one and the nostalgia it invokes every time we see one. I can still remember my great-grandfather (Iola’s husband) using his daily. And why not? They’ve stood the test of time!

Early uses for the Stanley bottle have included flying with the pilots on B-17s during World War II, carrying human organs, transporting bull semen by the cattle industry, and accompanying crews on deep sea explorations. Today the bottle has been used for cooking noodles and hot dogs, transporting temperature-delicate medicines, and coffee.

 

Day 3

Surfing

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It is no secret that surfing makes us happy. An estimated 23 million people across the globe wouldn’t surf if it made us sad or angry. We surf for a number of different reasons. Apart from the obvious thrill of chasing waves, there is also a scientific reason why we surf and that’s because surfing actually gets you high. The air above the water actually charges you with positive vibes, surfing and happiness are scientifically linked! That is why Iola Modern has chosen surfing as Day 3 for gifting.

Kelly Girth has the stoke and is the genius behind Sea Monster Surfboards. Based in Southern California, Kelly shapes and designs all her boards by hand. Every board is meticulously built with a surfer's performance in mind and designed with the highest aesthetic quality. Founded in 2012 in Manahattan Beach, California.


Today's spotlight is on Iola Modern's man behind the scene. Jason Bremer,  the team's Art Director, makes the little things come to light. With one eye on design and the other on the surf he is always stoked and looking forward to the next creative journey.

Day 4

Nola

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Nola joins the Iola Modern team as part-time greeter with nearly a decade of experience in showroom management, vacuuming floors and finding occasional treats and greeting every customer with genuine excitement. She also works most weekdays with Will as his paralegal. You should see her with pearls on!

We don’t stock pet items in the studio but Nola would still love to see you!

Day 5

Lighting

Day 6

Juicy Salif

The Juicy Salif is one of my all-time favorite pieces of design. It’s not often we learn why or how the things we use everyday come about. Here’s the story of the Juicy Salif. 

Philippe Starck was having lunch on the Amalfi coast. As he ordered a plate of calamari he was pondering his latest commission from the Italian design house Alessi. The company, responsible for so many acclaimed designs over the years, had requested a tray. Starck needed to work out how to bring his unique talents to such a humdrum object. Glancing down at his plate, he realised that he had no lemon.

As he beckoned to the waiter, Starck was suddenly seized by an idea. He began scribbling on his paper napkin.

Twenty years on, that napkin is now in the Alessi Museum. Greasy and lemon-stained, it depicts the very first doodles of what would become the now iconic Juicy Salif lemon squeezer.

Alberto Alessi, the manager of the company, recalls: "I received a napkin from Starck; on it, among some incomprehensible marks – tomato sauce, in all likelihood – there were some sketches. Sketches of squid. They started on the left and as they worked their way over to the right, they took on the unmistakable shape of what was to become the Juicy Salif lemon squeezer.

First produced in 1990, this squeezer is as controversial as many of Starck's other designs. Some say it doesn't work very well and makes a mess of the worktop. Others celebrate it as a piece of form over function. Whatever your opinion, it now ranks among the greats of modern design with a place in the Museum of Modern Art in New York, which means that it's a work of art in your kitchen.

Starck is rumoured to have said: "It's not meant to squeeze lemons, it is meant to start conversations."

And the tray? Well, two years later, Starck finally gave them his idea for the Voilà Voilà tray.

Day 7

Warm up with our fire (lanterns)

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In Charleston, we love back porch sitting. We also love entertaining and there’s something very sexy about a large open flame. These two from Blomus are my favorite fire lanterns for their versatility and ease of use.

Day 8

Spotlight on Will

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Todays spotlight is on our dashing-devil co-founder, Will, who moonlights as a full-time attorney. Since he's practicing law 9-5, he has a professional opinion about task-lighting and workspace design. Step up your office-game with some of Will's favorite workspace pieces.  

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Pablo Brazo Lamp The Brazo lamp is one of my absolute favorite pieces. Steven gave me a Brazo lamp while I was in law school and it’s still on my desk today. The light source on this lamp is incredible but even more impressive is the ability to redirect the light source in endless ways. It’s fun to play with and your coworkers will be envious.

Pablo Contour Lamp We use the contour lamp in the lobby of my firm. It’s clever, central USB is loved by everyone who visits. I also think it helps take their minds off all the legal mumbo-jumbo.

Blu Dot Stash Desk For those times when you need an area at home where you can setup your laptop but never make it feel too much like like a home-office...

Modern Fan We love the fan for it’s total and absolute silence. No speaking. No wobbling. Just a sharp modern fan.

Day 9

Timepieces

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I love timepieces for their ability to help define personal style. I’ve included my favorite styles from Piero Lissoni and Michael Graves but I especially love the Calder-inspired Xela watch from Projects. 

Day 10

Naughty or nice

Naughty or nice, everyone has a vice. Here are some gift ideas for those friends who love to have a good time!

Day 11

Architectural Jewelry by Alessi

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During the 2015 International Contemporary Furniture Fair in New York City, I met Mario Trimachi at a private party hosted by Alessi. I was excited to meet him, knowing he’d be in attendance but I gained even more respect for him after we met - Trimarchi is soft-spoken and incredibly humble; especially for a man who’s designs have enriched the lives of their recipients the world over. I am particularly fond of his line of architectural jewelry because the design story recounts romantic childhood memories. 

A bit about the inspiration:

While the Winds of Scirocco ravage Sicily and the Mediterranean, Trimarchi recalls his family "La Stanza dello Scirocco” which translates to "The Room of Scirocco.” Scilicians took cover in these windowless rooms providing them protection and shelter from the hot, sultry and sandy winds arriving from northern Africa.  A young Trimarchi recalls opening a door to the scirocco and watching all of the playing cards on their game table take flight in the wind.

Design is a naive way to feel a little closer to the mystery of beauty. - Mario Trimarchi

Day 12

New Years Resolution Setters

Do you have big plans to lose weight in the new year? Are you one of those compulsive weight-checkers? Do you just want a clever looking scale that isn’t as common as the next?

Alessi has the answer with this scale.