JayBird BlueBuds X Sport Bluetooth Headphones

JayBird BlueBuds X Sport Bluetooth Headphones

The JayBird BlueBuds X — recently recommended by our editor Shawn Blanc — are an awesome set of Bluetooth earbuds to run with.

They sound great (especially if you replace the default rubber tips with these Comply memory foam earbud tips) and aren’t likely to fall out during your workout, especially since there’s no cable between the buds and your iPhone to catch on things. The 8-hour battery life, in-line mic, and lifetime warranty against sweat are the cherries on top.

Pick up a pair of the JayBird BlueBuds X on Amazon for $139. A pack of the Comply earbud tips is $16.

‘Will It Waffle?’ by Daniel Shumski

‘Will It Waffle?’ by Daniel Shumski

If there’s one thing I love in the morning (besides my daily regimen of coffee injections), it’s a good Belgian waffle. So, you’ll understand why I’m more than excited about Daniel Shumski’s upcoming cookbook, Will It Waffle?

You’ll learn how to waffle all sorts of stuff: bacon, eggs, hash browns, muffins, French toast, mac & cheese, sweet potato gnocci, potato and cheese pierogi, quesadillas, meatballs, filet minon, pizza, apple pie, and somebody please stop me before I eat everything in my house.

The book is set to release on Aug 26th, 2014, but can be pre-ordered right now in paperback ($12), Kindle ($10), or iBooks ($10) formats.

SpeakerSlide

SpeakerSlide

The SpeakerSlide is a Kickstarter project that reminds me of the SoundBender from a while back, but modernized for today’s iOS devices.

It plugs into your Lightning port, placing a curved space directly over the device’s speaker so that its audio redirects to you rather than going sideways out into the air. No more cupping your hand over the speaker like an animal. It can even be used while charging, assuming you’re using Apple’s standard Lightning cable and not a 3rd-party model.

The Kickstarter campaign ends in 5 days as of this writing. $10 is the minimum pledge level to receive a SpeakerSlide for iPad in black or white (or, if they meet their stretch goal, an iPhone version).

CHECK IT OUT Find more: Audio, iPad, iPhone

‘On Web Typography’ by Jason Santa Maria

‘On Web Typography’ by Jason Santa Maria

This morning the folks at A Book Apart released renowned graphic designer Jason Santa Maria’s new book, On Web Typography. The title says it all really, but I’ll go ahead and include their own foreword so you know what this is all about.

“Typography is your design’s voice and the most powerful tool you have to communicate with your readers. Learn how to wield type with care and wit: how to evaluate typefaces, consider technical constraints, create flexible typographic systems, and put together your own collection of favorite faces.

Jason Santa Maria wants you to see type beyond code or flourishes. You’ll discover how typography shapes the way we read and how you can adapt the craft’s practices for the screen. So go ahead. Choose, combine, and set typefaces with ease—and invite readers in.”

The paperback version of On Web Typography is $18 (it was sold out when I first scheduled this post but appears to be back in stock as of 4pm CDT, Aug 5th 2014) and the ebook is just $9. You can also purchase them together as a $22.50 bundle.

A free excerpt is available here.

CHECK IT OUT Find more: Books, Design

The Incomparable T-Shirt

The Incomparable T-Shirt

The Incomparable is a favorite podcast of mine, from the nerdy conversations down to the awesome logo. That logo is being printed on a t-shirt via the Cotton Bureau, a Kickstarter-like site for shirt designs.

They’ve already surpassed their support goal, so you’re guaranteed a shirt if you get in on the action before 2pm EDT on Friday, Aug 22nd 2014. They’re $25 each.

CHECK IT OUT Find more: Attire

TROVE Slim Wallet & Card Case

TROVE Slim Wallet & Card Case

The TROVE wallet, very near to reaching its Kickstarter funding goal, can best be described as a Supr Slim wallet on steroids.

It combines strong, woven elastic with vegetable-tanned full-grain Italian leather accents. The whole thing is reversible too, so you can organize your cards and cash the way you like. Holds up to 10 cards (far more than I need on a daily basis) and is RFID-compatible so you can tap the entire wallet to an appropriate scanner rather than digging out individual cards.

To back the project and get a TROVE wallet in return, will run you £25—about $42 USD.

International shipping is free, and they promise to fulfill all orders before the holiday season.

CHECK IT OUT Find more: Wallets

2014 Britax B-Agile Stroller

2014 Britax B-Agile Stroller

As a stay-at-home dad who likes taking his son on lots of walks around the neighborhood, having a good stroller is important to me. The 2014-model Britax B-Agile is one of the better options out there, for several reasons:

  • It’s surprisingly lightweight for its size.
  • You can fold it one-handed. After the kid is out, just push the safety button on the side and pull the handle located in the seat. The B-Agile can then be carried by that handle like a suitcase.
  • Tight turn radius. Just as important for strollers as it is for cars.
  • One-foot braking system, so there’s no forgetting to engage one or the other.

The B-Agile is currently $216 on Amazon, though I’ve seen it lower than that in the past (around $190, I believe). Even so, it’s a good deal for the quality you get in return.

CHECK IT OUT Find more: Kids

Scosche Retractable Lightning Cable

Scosche Retractable Lightning Cable

The Scosche Strikeline is a retractable Lightning cable for iPad and iPhone. Extends to 3ft long, retracts to about the size of a watch face for travel purposes. Simple!

The black version is $18, the white one $21.

R2-D2 Thick Lines T-Shirt

R2-D2 Thick Lines T-Shirt

Tools & Toys reader Chase McCoy has designed a slick R2-D2 t-shirt you Star Wars fans out there will enjoy. Chase is a good guy and we’d like to see him reach his Teespring goal.

There are three versions to choose from:

  • Asphalt gray American Apparel crew ($20)
  • Dark gray heather V-neck ($28)
  • Navy women’s fit tee ($20)
CHECK IT OUT Find more: Attire, Movies

Tom Bihn Aeronaut 30 Carry-On Travel Bag

Tom Bihn Aeronaut 30 Carry-On Travel Bag

The new Tom Bihn Aeronaut 30 (little brother of the original Aeronaut 45) is a convertible carry-on travel bag that can comfortably be worn over the shoulder duffel-style or as a backpack. Watch this video to see it in action.

This thing can carry a surprising amount of stuff for its size. The main body of the bag is divided into three compartments, the center one being the largest. Each of the interior panels dividing the end compartments from the center one can be unzipped and pushed aside if you need more space.

Tom Bihn Aeronaut 30 Carry-On Travel Bag

Both of its exterior end pockets are zippered, and all zippers throughout are of the YKK Aquaguard waterproof coil variety. The exterior and lining are comprised of highly durable nylon fabric. All in all, this is a tough bag.

Tom Bihn was even thoughtful enough to make an Aeronaut 30-sized version of their Travel Laundry Stuff Sack (which, again, you can see in action), a small bag that holds clean clothes on one side and dirty ones on the other—indicated by colored drawstrings at either end.

The Aeronaut 30 will start shipping to the public in late September, but can be pre-ordered now for $270.

Trent iCarrier Battery Pack

Trent iCarrier Battery Pack

After yesterday’s post about the NomadPlus external battery, reader Josh Hogan wrote in with another suggestion: the Trent iCarrier. It doesn’t come with a wall adapter of its own, but it has other advantages:

  • 12,000mAh power capacity, meaning it can charge your iPhone and iPad a couple times each before needing its own recharge. If you have just an iPhone, you could probably squeeze out half-a-dozen recharges.
  • Dual USB ports for charging two devices simultaneously.
  • Surprisingly portable — Despite its huge capacity, the battery is still small enough to toss into a bag and take on trips.
  • Battery level indicators (low, mid, high) tell you how much energy the battery has left.
  • Quick to recharge, for its capacity. It can go from empty to full in about 8 hours, so just plug it in overnight and you should be set.

And at $38, it won’t break the bank either.

Thanks, Josh!

NomadPlus

NomadPlus

(Readers, take note of the promo code at the end of this post.)

There are a number of ways to deal with device battery life issues while traveling. I personally like using a Mophie Juice Pack Air on my iPhone because I can just flip the power switch when I need a boost. It does have its downsides though:

  • Not everyone wants a bulky case on their iPhone.
  • The Juice Pack Air can’t charge an iPad or anything else than the iPhone it’s protecting.

That’s why I’m interested in the upcoming NomadPlus, an external battery that integrates with any modern Apple wall adapter.

Insert the adapter, plug it in like normal, and the NomadPlus will first charge your device before charging its own internal battery. When it’s time to leave, unplug the unit and you’ve got an extra 70% charge (based on the iPhone 5s battery) ready to go when you need it most.

The official release date isn’t until November 30th 2014, but you can pre-order a NomadPlus now for half-off ($19.50, down from $39) if you use the code NOMADPLUS at checkout.

Hard Graft Refresh Dopp Kit

Hard Graft Refresh Dopp Kit

The Refresh Dopp Kit is a vertical bag for your home or travel toiletries. The vegetable-tanned leather exterior can stand up on its own, while the water-resistant wool felt lining (with zipper enclosure) keeps everything nice and dry. Get it for $269 at Hard Graft.

CHECK IT OUT Find more: Bags, Home, Travel

Kanex DoubleUp — Two-Port USB Wall Charger for iPad and iPhone

Kanex DoubleUp — Two-Port USB Wall Charger for iPad and iPhone

As the title suggests, the Kanex DoubleUp is a wall adapter that accepts two USB cables. It’s powerful enough to charge two iPads relatively quickly, thanks to each USB port’s 10.5-watt output, and it has helpful status LEDs on the front to let you know if your device is fully charged (green) or still charging (orange). I like that it’s small enough to toss into a bag on trips.

$32 on Amazon.

Rotring 800+ Mechanical Pencil and Stylus Hybrid

Rotring 800+ Mechanical Pencil and Stylus Hybrid

The Rotring 800+ is a combination of stylus and retractable 0.7mm mechanical pencil. Give the cap a small twist to extend or retract the mechanical pencil—while retracted the 800+ acts like any other stylus, perfect for use on an iPad.

The hexagonal metal barrel adds a certain heftiness and quality that feels great in the hand, and thanks to its knurled grip, it’s not likely to slip out of your fingers.

The Rotring 800+ 0.7mm is available for $65 on Amazon in black or silver. For a few more bucks, you can get a 0.5mm black or a 0.5mm silver.

Ugmonk Black Series

Ugmonk Black Series

This morning, Ugmonk unveiled the Black Series, a collection of eight of their most popular items that have been given the monochrome treatment. This is some of the slickest stuff Ugmonk has ever put out.

If you can’t decide what to pick and have $250 to spare, you can buy the entire set at once. If you just want the four t-shirts, that’s $95. Be sure to check out the Black Series Lookbook to see each item in action.

Brooks “Challenge” — Leather Tool Bag for Cyclists

Brooks “Challenge” — Leather Tool Bag for Cyclists

The Brooks Challenge is a beautiful leather bag that attaches to your bike saddle, keeping your cyclists’ tools handy at all times. The buckles of the attachment straps are located inside the bag, as well as the enclosure strap, which wraps around your tools and keeps them from rattling about during your ride.

The Challenge is available on Amazon in a variety of colors. Most range from $82-$90, with the exception of the $67 royal blue model.

CHECK IT OUT Find more: Bags, Biking, Tools

Cameron Moll’s Letterpress Posters

Cameron Moll’s Letterpress Posters

You may or may not already be familiar with Cameron Moll’s work over at Authentic Jobs, but did you know he also painstakingly recreates pieces of architecture in letterpress form and sells prints of them?

If not, now is a good time to look at his store because he’s having a buy-one-get-one-free sale until July 31, 2014. My personal favorite is the Brooklyn Bridge poster (pictured above, $120) but you can also get posters of the Coliseum ($100) or Salt Lake Temple ($100). They’re not cheap posters, but they weren’t easy to design either. Cameron also uses hi-quality materials in these posters, such as Crane’s Lettra Pearl 100%-cotton paper.

To take advantage of the BOGO sale, use the discount code TWOFER during checkout.

Takahiro Gooseneck Kettle

Takahiro Gooseneck Kettle

When it comes to kettles, you’ll have to pry the Bonavita variable temp gooseneck out of my cold, dead hands—but I must admit, this Japanese-imported Takahiro kettle has a certain classic appeal to it. While the Bonavita is the more convenient option to be sure, the Takahiro’s simpler design aesthetic is far more pleasing to the eye.

The Takahiro kettle is $92 on Amazon.

General Purpose / Desk Scissors by Ernest Wright and Son Ltd

General Purpose / Desk Scissors by Ernest Wright and Son Ltd

I know it seems a bit silly to be writing about a pair of scissors, especially ones that cost £22 (~$38 USD) but watch this video and you’ll see just how much care goes into every set.

They’re made from professional-grade, hand-tempered carbon steel blades, and each pair is guaranteed for life. The company will even re-sharpen the blades for you decades after the fact, if need be. Compare that to the cheapy scissors from the dollar store.

CHECK IT OUT Find more: Home, Office, Tools
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