From the team behind the Plumen 001 — a fashionable, low-energy replacement for standard 60W bulbs — comes the Plumen 002 Light Bulb ($30). Like the 001, it uses CFL technology to provide all the lighting power of a 30W bulb while using less than a quarter of the energy, but the real draw is in the sculpted shape, made possible by a glass tube that's blown in the same way as a bottle, creating a curved, fluid form that looks great hanging from the ceiling, in a sconce, or even in a traditional table lamp.
The laziest cooking method of all time just got even lazier with the Crock-Pot WeMo Smart Slow Cooker ($100) — the first ever web-connected crock-pot. Adding to their existing line of connected home devices, this crock-pot lets you turn it on or off, adjust cooking temperature, and change time using their app for iOS or Android from anywhere. It's perfect for cooking chili, soup, and other common crock-pot meals, even if you're schedule is unpredictable, letting you turn it off if you're working late, or if you get stuck in traffic. With push reminders and the ability to calculate cook times and processes on its own, it takes all the difficulties out of something that was already pretty simple to begin with.
For the minimalist coffee lover in you, there's the Canadiano Coffee Maker ($60-$80; includes one pound of coffee). Carved from a single block of cherry, walnut, or maple wood, this coffee maker is truly as simple as it gets, featuring a metal filter that never needs to be replaced. Each variety is meant for a specific sort of coffee — with walnut made for darker roasts, and maple or cherry made for nuttier, more citrusy beans. All you need to do is place it over your mug, add in two scoops of coarsely-ground beans, and pour over hot water. With two to four minutes of brewing, and stirring to suit your preference, you get a personalized single cup of coffee every time, without all the waste of other single cup methods.
Sometimes tiny apartments are just a fact of life, making you do the best you can with a small amount of space. So, if your room is at a premium, you need the MK1 Transforming Coffee Table ($1,300). It's a coffee table when you want it, and a dining room table when you need it, easily transforming from one to the other in just two simple movements. Made from either solid oak, ash, or walnut and birch plywood, this table is available in a number of attractive finishes to suit your space. All you need to do to transform is into a dining room table is fold out the eaves — and fold them back in when you're finished.
While, admittedly, not everyone is going to necessarily find everyday applications for a product like the Searzall ($65), if you're a serious home cook (or small-time professional chef), you'll wonder how you ever did without it. It's a fixture for a standard blow-torch, making it much better suited for use with food by helping eliminate the torch-taste commonly found in foods seared with a torch. It works by forcing the flame through two layers of heat-proof mesh, largely reducing the flame to radiant heat, and letting it perfectly sear sous-vide foods, foie gras, fish, steak, burgers — really anything.
Let's face it, monitoring your weight — no matter how carefully you do it — just isn't enough information to keep you in touch with the healthiness of your body. With the Withings Smart Body Analyzer ($150) you get much more data than you could ever get from a standard scale, all housed within a familiar-looking device. Sure, it measures your weight, but it also calculates body fat, resting heart rate, and indoor air quality. Additionally, all that data gets synced automatically with your mobile device using the Withings app for iOS. Using this data, you can track your progress, and get smarter about the way you manage your body.
If normal brewed coffee isn't always enough of a jolt to get you rolling in the morning, but you still don't like spending your mornings in long lines waiting for a latte, you should consider brewing your own espresso. The La Cafetiere Stovetop Espresso Pot ($30) easily brews six shots of espresso at a time on gas, electric, and radiant cooking surfaces. The soft touch handle makes it easy to use, even when it's hot, while the durable aluminum body endures years of brewing. It's the perfect way to brew strong espresso at home or at work, and avoid all the frustrations of the coffee shop — now all you have to do is learn to make your own triple venti soy no-foam latte.
Sure, there are worse things than those freezer-burnt excuses for waffles you get at your local grocery — but come on, you can do better. With the Waring Commercial Waffle Maker ($450), you can enjoy fresh, tasty, Belgian-style waffles at home — and it's pretty hard to beat fresh. This side-by-side waffle maker can cook two waffles at the same time, and its rotary feature lets you evenly bake and brown. Its triple non-stick coating virtually eliminates mess, while making it a breeze to remove your waffles, and the precise heating elements give you a golden-brown waffle every time.
True to the ideas driving the design philosophy of the Bauhaus, the Kaiser Idell Luxus Lamp ($815) shows us that a simple device, in this case a desk-top lamp, doesn't need to look like a boring appliance. With its characteristic dome top, curving details, and glossy black embellishments, this recently-reintroduced design is a credit to the original. With chrome-plated steel and brass construction, as well as patented swivel joints that adjust the angle of the light, this lamp is more a work of modern art, than a simple device for illuminating whatever it is you're working on.
Add a touch of rustic charm (without sacrificing class) to your next meal with these Phillippe Starck Log Knives ($465). This set of six knives is made entirely from stainless steel, carefully formed, detailed with a wood bark design, and finished in matte. Each one is forged into a seamless piece of stainless steel, for workmanship that will last and last, while still maintaining a light weight that feels natural in your hand.
If you've had the pleasure of enjoying a cup of coffee brewed in a Chemex (or similar pour-over coffeemaker), you know that there are few better ways to prepare your favorite morning pick-me-up — but you also know how difficult it can be to get it right. The Ratio Eight Coffee Machine ($400) combines the same principles used to brew by hand in a pour-over device, and adds precise technology so you get the perfect brew every time. Carefully heated water reaches the proper temperature for your brew, then pours water over the grounds allowing them to bloom, before finally pouring additional hot water to finish the brewing process. What you end up with is an excellent pot of fresh coffee, with repeatable results, and zero fuss.
More art-object than timepiece, the Atmos Hermes Clock ($42,000) is truly a functional thing of beauty. A three-part collaboration between luxury brands Hermes, Jaeger-LeCoultre, and Saint-Louis, this crystal bubble globe houses an incredible piece of time-keeping technology: the Atmos clock. The world's only mechanical timepiece that does not require any winding from a human hand — it uses changes in the surrounding temperature to interact with a gas-filled capsule that expands and contracts to wind the movement. With design from Hermes, and master hand-made glass craftsmanship from Saint-Louis, this clock represents an incredible partnership, ingenious craftsmanship, and attention to detail completely uncommon among average household items.