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Since Kickstarter launched in 2009, more than 61,000 projects have been funded and brought to life. Not all of them have been winners, but somewhere amongst the unfinished albums and misguided t-shirt ideas there are some real design gems.
Recently, 24 of Kickstarter’s best designs will go on sale at the MoMA Store. These are the kinds of products that look so good and perform so well they rise above the crowdsourced masses. It’s the ultimate nod of approval: A crowdfunded design getting shelf time at a design institution.
To narrow the field, MoMA Store curators scoured Kickstarter for interesting projects. “The filters we used in selecting the Kickstarter projects were the same we always use in seeking good design,” says Chay Costello, Assistant Director of Merchandising for MoMA . “Does this design solve a problem?” We've picked out nine of our favorites from the list. All of them will be on sale until June 16 at both MoMA Store locations in New York City and on the MoMA store website.
If you’ve ever tried carrying your bike up the stairs of a walk-up apartment, you’ll appreciate Walnut Studiolo’s bicycle frame handle. The leather strap clips above the derailleur and below the water bottle holder, which shifts the rider’s center of gravity downward.
Instead of hoisting the bike on your shoulder, this handle allows you carry your bike with a stiff, straight arm, like you might a bag of groceries. $45
The present clock only has one hand, but that’s it needs. It takes an entire year for the hand to make a single rotation around the face, and along the way it passes by the changes in season reflected by a rainbow of colors. The present clock makes a slippery thing like time easier to grasp. $200
A bike fender for fairweather riders. The die cut plastic guard looks as thin as a fin, but it protects you from the water and splashing mud flicked up by your bike tire. When you’re not using it, the fender rolls up into a tight coil. $30
You plug your phone in at night and by morning it’s fully charged. Problem is, it might take your phone an hour to hit its full charge, but after that it’s still sucking power from your outlet. The Powerslaver is designed to reduce the charge as soon as your phone is fully juiced, and it consumes 1/10th of the standby power regular chargers do. $90
The NeoLucida is a modern-day update to the Camera Lucida, a 19th century device that used a prism to project an image onto a piece of paper. This allowed artists to trace with precision for the first time ever.
This invention from art professors Pablo Garcia and Golan Levin utilizes the same principles as the Camera Lucida, only now it’s updated with better materials, and was designed to be compact so you can stick in your bag. $48
The little robots are about as simple as robots get. There’s no coding or wiring needed to build them. All you do is snap the modules together via their magnetic bits to enable things like light, distance and microphones sensors. It’s a smart solution to what could otherwise be a very complicated toy. Basic kit, $155 Advanced kit, $485
The Loog guitar is music stripped down. The acoustic instrument has three strings instead of six to make it easier for kids to learn to play. $150
Loog Three-String Guitar The Loog guitar is music stripped down. The acoustic instrument has three strings instead of six to make it easier for kids to learn to play. $150
These wooden toy cars are delightfully low-tech. Crafted from beech wood and hand painted, the handsome, boxy shape of 1960s automobiles make them feel classic. It’s the type of toy your kid will play with and maybe even your kid’s kid. Race car, $30
Police car, $35
These little characters connect to your home wireless network and can remotely receive and deliver messages from anywhere in the world. Want to say goodnight to your son? Just boot up the app and record your voice. Your message is delivered via the toys, and they can send you replies, too. $59
-- Liz Stinson, Wired.com
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