Explore in Style: The Weekend Getaway

Just in time for the weekend we’ve collected some exciting packing inspiration for your next getaway. Be it exploring ghost towns in the deserts of Arizona, a whirlwind, gluttonous tour of all the newest food trucks in your area or weekend at sea in Caribbean, the weekend opens up a wealth of possibility for spontaneous trips near or far.

Jamie Bartlett, Blogger and Graphic Designer at A Pair of Pears
travel-essentials01
For an exploratory weekend road trip up and down the west coast, Jamie packed her Erika Ray-Ban sunglasses, Moleskine sketchbook, Charles pencil case, her grandfather’s vintage Leica camera, hair and beauty accessories, iPhone, earphones, Cord Taco, and H&M hoodie.


Taylor Hoff, photographer and visual merchandizer at Apple Inc.
191c7ef6175411e3bb6122000a1f9d92_7
d5367ca413f811e3a51a22000a9e00f6_7
For a quick trip to Palo Alto, Taylor packed just the essentials: his handmade board, several pairs of Vans, wardrobe basics, some good reads and his iPad. True inspiration for traveling light.


Mike Macadaan, founder and creative director of This is Ground
cargito (1 of 1)
Like a boy scout, preparedness is Mike’s strong suit in packing:

I like the idea of being the guy that has a vintage view master or a boomerang just in case. It’s never really the case but with this much random, boredom is never an issue. If you have the space, I recommend using it both wisely and foolishly.

His weekend gear for a boat trip down in San Diego included a Norse Projects cap, Paper Chase Press notebooks, vintage Viewmaster, vintage and AXS Folk Technology shorts, HUF boxers, Stumptown cold brew growler, Vans sneakers, a new TIG prototype for field testing, hair and body essentials from Aesop, Baxter of California and Go 24/7, Ollo clip, Joby GorillaPod, headphones, and of course lots of This is Ground gear.


Christine Amorose, blogger at C’est Christine

For a brief weekend getaway to Interlaken Inn with her boyfriend, Christine packed her blue and gold favorites: Nice Laundry socks, Marc Jacobs aviators, sunglasses sleeve, Kate Spade wallet, Everlane top and some beauty products tucked into her gold Tomo pouch.


Christopher Dugas, freelance photographer and mixologist at The Grove in St. Louis
cdugas (1 of 1)
On his weekend off from hustling as a freelance photog, Christopher can be found exploring his city with a compass, Macbook Pro, Polaroid Land camera, Field Notes and a good read, his iPhone in a RECOVER wood case, Cordito and Top Shelf Flask in tow.

Store Visit with TENOVERSIX

106 (6 of 15)

We stopped by one of our favorite LA boutiques, TENOVERSIX this week to drop off some shiny new products and check out their selection of summer goods. We love their beautifully curated space and forward-thinking selection of clothes, accessories and other goods– and not just because we’re stocked there! We’re in good company with womenswear from APC, Opening Ceremony and Jasmin Shokrian, ceramics by Jessica Hans and Ben Medansky and a fantastic selection of reading material.

The store feels part shop, part gallery space (especially with the beautiful paintings by Lola Rose Thompson up on the walls). If you haven’t been, stop in!

8425 Melrose Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90069

106 (2 of 15)

106 (3 of 15)
Our Knick Knack Nachos, Cord Tacos and Charles Pencil Case on display.

106 (7 of 15)

106 (8 of 15)

106 (9 of 15)

106 (11 of 15)

106 (14 of 15)

106 (15 of 15)

7 Questions with Justhanni

We first stumbled across the photography of Hanni (aka justhanni) on Instagram where he’s gained a large following for his charismatic VSCO Cam iPhone photography. He tagged our Cord Taco in a photo of his everyday bag and when we checked out his photos, we were immediately charmed by the quote on his profile, “Life is too short to remove USB safely”. Since then, we’ve been following along with his quiet, thoughtful photography from Denmark (and beyond) which has captivated us with its inventive use of symmetry and light.

How do you start your day?
With coffee! On the way to work (I vary between car, metro and bike) I listen to some nice tunes to get me started and catch up with my Instagram feed/comments.

74393db47ec011e3ace41228aa2e19f5_8

What do you carry in your everyday bag?
Always my Fujifilm X20, extra iPhone charger and two different sets of earphones (neatly wrapped in my TIG products :), sunglasses and a shemagh.

e88a6dbca60411e3aa1112b046c33d69_8

How does Copenhagen inspire your photography?
Copenhagen keeps surprising me and showing me new sides of itself. It’s a city that’s going through a lot of change and it allows for constant inspiration that way. I also love following my fellow Copenhagen Instagramers’ takes on our city – it seems like there’s always new angles and spots to discover.

e345aaa0958e11e392800a3677605d12_8

What do you shoot with when you’re not on your iPhone?
Currently I’m in between DSLR’s, but I’m planning on getting a Canon 6D soon. So at the moment I’m having great fun shooting with my Fujifilm X20.

1538489_542400375857069_1730193550_n

Your favorite travel destination?
Just one favourite destination? That’s a tough one… I’ve been fortunate enough to visit so many great places. But China really stood out. Being an immensely large country, I was amazed at its diverse milieus and cultures. In just 15 days I experienced hi-tech metropolises, an historic wall, quaint river villages, mystical mountain ranges and tropical environments.

1516135_503566769758368_1482055757_n

What can’t you live without?
Traveling.

37e9530ab5af11e3910112bbf73ae200_8

What are you listening to/reading/watching at the moment?
Like the rest of the world, I’m following Game of Thrones right now, but honestly I don’t have much time for TV or reading. Perhaps just for reading Instagram comments, ha! 😉

58c3a6f4c65b11e3a2320002c9dc82a4_8

Follow @justhanni on Instagram.

Our New Studio / Ground Tour

blog (18 of 23)

At the beginning of April, we moved to a new working studio space in the Marion R. Grey building in downtown Los Angeles. Originally in Unit 306 of this 1920’s building named after men’s shirting and necktie producer, Marion Grey, we quickly outgrew the space (as we did only a few months earlier from our founder, Mike Macadaan’s downtown loft) and now occupy Unit 300.

With twice the space, we’ve expanded our fulfillment team and work area, brought in a sewing machine and leather skiver to execute prototyping in house, set up a photo studio and created a small showroom space. Exciting times ahead for This is Ground (and not just because our building lies on the Puente Hills fault line…).

blog (20 of 23)


blog (22 of 23)


As always, we have our trusty Goodyear blimp flying overhead.

blog (21 of 23)

Our new space gives us a prime, bird’s eye view of Los Angeles Street in the heart of the Los Angeles fashion district and the rapidly revitalizing Downtown scene. We took a short tour of our surroundings to capture some of the iconic signage and check out fun new spots in the neighborhood.

blog (11 of 23)

blog (9 of 23)The Orpheum Theater 

blog (14 of 23)Pattern Bar

Acne Studios & ilcaffé

blog (6 of 23)

blog (5 of 23)Ace Hotel

blog (4 of 23)

blog (15 of 23)Aesop

blog (2 of 23)

Lighter Than Air


In my early 20’s I travelled the USA with an advertising blimp. I spent two years of Americana insanity moving from motel to hotel every week covering sporting events and pumping lots of helium. While most of my time was spent on the ground, I did a fair amount of communication with the blimp pilots and even flew the ship here and there. Each time I called the ship from my VHF radio, I would always address the pilots with “560 Alpha Bravo. This is Ground.”

Since I was in a constant state of packing, unpacking and repacking for the entirety of the tour, I quickly learned how to organize and stow my most valuable gear. I was living out of suitcases, action packers and just about every other type of carrying case you could imagine. Aside from all that I learned about operating a blimp tour, I also became extremely efficient in the art of organizing, packing and protecting. My obsession with organization was part of the inspiration behind my very first cord taco.

Because of the tour, “This is Ground” is a very personal greeting to me but that’s not the only reason it became the name of my business. I’m also a huge David Bowie fan, and “This is Ground” is part of one of his most famous songs, Space Oddity.

This is Ground Control to Major Tom
You’ve really made the grade
And the papers want to know whose shirts you wear
Now it’s time to leave the capsule
If you dare

So that’s how the name, This is Ground came about. Although I’m consistently inspired by the meaning others find in the name.

Recently, in an interview with a blogger I was told that he had found an alternative meaning to This is Ground. As a writer, he thought the name was referring to how our products grounded individuals in their craft.

He had seen our Leatherback Writer 2 and it instinctively moved him to pick up his pen. The idea that our products connected and grounded him to being a writer really resonated with him, and I was inspired by his interpretation of our name. I think it’s really special when something you’ve helped create conjures up emotional connections in people.

– Mike Macadaan

Meet Nisha

nisha7

Meet the newest member of the team at This is Ground, Nisha. Nisha hails from Amsterdam and is a graduate from the Amsterdam Fashion Institute in menswear design. In her new role at This is Ground as Product Designer, she has lent her minimal menswear aesthetic to all the new pieces we’re working on and whips up a mean, professional quality prototype in just a few hours. Today we followed her around as she sourced leather, bought a skiver and worked on our newest prototype. We asked her some questions along the way.

nisha

C: How do you start your day?
N: I wake up, do some yoga stretches and greet the sun, take a shower and have my breakfast.

C: What made you pursue design?
N: Well I had to choose something! [laughs] No, I always had a major appreciation for the quality and craftsmanship behind good design, be it clothes, accessories or architecture and I wanted to explore that notion in my education. The personal expression that is possible through clothing also interested me and led me to studying menswear.

C: And what made you want to work with leather?
N: Even as a young kid messing around I used leather for small projects. In my collections for school I liked to use leather as finishing and details for garments because I liked the look and feel of the material. I think it really elevates a piece. I mean, sometimes I wear leather pants and [a leather] top– I just love leather!

2014-04-11 10_20_07

 

C: So who are some designers that inspire your work?
N: Let me think… Ann Demeulemeester. Helmut Lang. Comme des Garçons. But I’m also inspired a lot by my surroundings. For example, Los Angeles. It’s a new city to me and the people, the culture and especially the architecture of DTLA are so inspiring to me.

C: How would you compare LA to Amsterdam?
N: Well, I really like the pampering culture here. People like to spend money and enjoy life which I think is the most important thing in life, to enjoy yourself. In Amsterdam there’s not so much of that. People are very stingy and like to say they’re being frugal when really they’re just greedy [laughs].

What else? Everyone has a dog here. And no one smokes! Cigarettes anyway.

Everyone in LA is crazy. I’ve never seen so many lunatics in my life but that’s what I like and I feel normal here.

imgj

C: Did you enjoy growing up in the Netherlands?
N: Yeah, I think it was a great place to grow up. Obviously I can’t compare it with anywhere else but it’s really a city where you can do what you want. You have access to opportunities in whatever field you are interested in. Also the people are very down to earth which was good to grow up around. I might get swept up in things if I wasn’t down to earth.

C: What kind of things did you want to be as a kid?
N: For a while I wanted to own a shop where you could get anything. I was very skinny and would carry around a big, big bag twice my size full of everything I might need. I was super prepared. One time as a kid my family and I got stuck on the road and we needed a wrench and low and behold I had one in my bag! But what I wanted to be changed constantly. One week a Egyptologist, the next a painter…

C: Lastly, a few quick questions: What are you reading right now?
N: Strangeland by Tracey Emin. It’s a memoir by the artist, reflecting on her past and present as an English artist of Turkish decent. Really interesting.

C: What are you listening to at the moment?
N: A mix of old and new things. As always, The Doors and the Clash. I also listen to a lot of Nine Inch Nails but I try not to advertise that too much.

nisha2

C: What are your goals for 2014?
N: My main goal this year was to visit the States and live in LA. I just wanted to explore the world and myself. And now I’m here! I also need to get my driver’s license this year.

Made With Paper

Made with Paper

Made with Paper

When dreaming up new product ideas for This is Ground, the design process for our founder Mike Macadaan starts with the FiftyThree Paper app and Pencil, so we were thrilled to see the Cargito featured on Made with Paper.

One of the best parts about working at FiftyThree is how often we’re inspired by our users. We love being at the heart of creation’s nascency, those early stages where ideas aren’t fully formed and full of possibility. Sometimes notes and sketches stay as just that, wonderful and crazy ideas, and sometimes they continue to take shape and eventually evolve into finished products. We’ve had designers sketch ideas for what became clothing and accessories, UX designs that became websites or iPhone and Android apps, playful creations that became children’s toys, architectural sketches that became foundations for houses, the list goes on.

When Mike Macadan wrote in to tell us about Cord Tacos and Corditos, however, we wondered if he had engineered a tasty new snack using Paper. Turns out, they’re a line of beautifully designed leather goods for storing electronic cords. Particularly cool for us was the fact that Paper is a core tool in his design process, and that his most recent product–a leather charging iPad case called Cargito– was optimized to perfectly fit Pencil. You can see some of Mike’s ideas on Paper up on top.

The result of those ideas? The Cargito Air Charging iPad Case along with its compact counterpart.

Cargito will be ready to ship this Spring. In the meantime, you can pre-order Cargito on the company’s site, This is Ground. We’re not the only ones digging Mike’s products: Wired, Complex, and Cool Hunting have also taken note of his clean, simple designs and beautiful craftsmanship.
Source

Cargito Air Whiskey

Cargito Mini Black

Cargito Whiskey (Charging)