Handful of Salt Print Magazine Launch


We were happy to have made it up to San Francisco this past week for Handful of Salt’s launch party celebrating the birth of their brand spankin’ new print magazine.  At a time when so many publications are foregoing print issues for digital, we’re so happy to see someone proving that print is not dead.  The perfectly square print edition is anything but square, featuring work by some of the world’s most interesting makers and creatives.  We can’t wait to see the next issue and look forward to adding this to our coffee table collection!

Order your own copy here!

Go: dineLA 2013 Winter Edition


Every year since 2008, the LA Tourism and Convention Board has teamed together with LA restaurants and American Express to host dine LA Restaurant Week, a bi-annual celebration of LA eateries.  For 12 straight days, over participating restaurants will be featuring special prix fixe menus for adventurous diners.  It’s the perfect chance to check out a new restaurant that has been on your soon-to-hit-list, or be reunited with a tried and true classic that you haven’t enjoyed in a while.  The winter installment of dine LA starts January 21st (today) and runs till February 1st.

Since we, at Secret Agent, pride ourselves on being quite devoted epicureans….(in other words, we eat….a lot), here is a selection of some of our top picks.  We have a preference for the Eastside so most of our picks are east of La Brea.


Artisan House – local to our new office in DTLA, this elegant eatery boasts a market, fantastic coffee, and fresh and local produce transformed into delicious Californian fare.

Cliff's Edge

Cliff’s Edge – we love a hidden restaurant and Cliff’s Edge has positively the best patio in town.  Beyond the clandestine door awaits a newly renovated door and a revitalized menu by Chef Vartan Abgaryan.


UMAMIcatessen – Inspired by international street bazaars and the classic American delicatessen, UMAMIcatessen is a table-service dining hall inside the Orpheum.  Informal, international, and insanely good.


Mo-Chica – it doesn’t get mo-delicious than Mo-Chica. Chef Ricardo Zarate, Food and Wine’s Best New Chef, offers up his own modern interpretation of classic Peruvian dishes.  It doesn’t hurt that the compact space pops with color and verve to match the cuisine.


Lukshon – our *one* west side pick is Lukshon.  This gorgeously appointed Culver City restaurant won an AIA Los Angeles Restaurant Design Award a few years ago.  Minimal, sophisticated, and ridiculously tasty.  You cannot go wrong with crab fritters.

For more information, follow dineLA on:

• Facebook: facebook.com/dinelafan 
• Twitter: twitter.com/dineLA 
• Instagram: http://followgram.me/dinela

Spotted: Reimagining the Light Bulb with Stickbulbs

One part avant-garde sculpture, and other part functional light fixture – there’s nothing we love more than practical, modern design, and the Stickbulb by NYC-based RUX is all that and more. Hot off the heels of its debut at this year’s ICFF, Stickbulb will be launching a new collection of LED lighting elements, along with its first custom light installation at Luminaire Design Lab in Miami from December 5-9, 2012.

With its K’Nex-like versatility and minimalist profile, Stickbulbs can be assembled with other parts or stand on its own to accomodate a wide range of spaces and styles. LED bulbs are tucked into metal or sustainably sourced wooden beams in lengths ranging from 1 to 6 feet long, and are made locally using resources found right in New York. Keep a piece of the city in your home, with Stickbulbs made from sun-bleached ipe salvaged from Coney Island’s boardwalk and reclaimed southern yellow pine from demolished buildings.

The launch collection includes a range of tabletop and floor designs ranging from $285-$2850 retail, and is now available for purchase at www.stickbulb.com.

Go: Dwell Home Tours in San Diego (Nov. 10-11)

Casa Diagonal by Safdie Rabines Architects in La Jolla, CA (photo credit: Dennis Viera)

Turkey, pumpkin pie, family, and…modern architecture.  There’s even more to be thankful for this month!  The design indulgence kicked off last weekend with Dwell’s popular Home Tours in Silicon Valley, and continues this weekend in San Diego. From Los Altos to Hillsborough, and Encinitas to La Mesa, fans of modern architecture in Southern So Cal will be treated to an exclusive look at the best in modernist living today with the first-ever Dwell San Diego Home Tours.  This is probably the only special treat that you can enjoy this month that won’t affect your waistline.  Go forth and enjoy!

Shayan House by Nakhshab Development & Design in San Diego, CA (photo credit: Reinaldo Solares)

With the work of architecture pioneers Richard Neutra and Joseph Eichler featured in the Silicon Valley home tour lineup, it was no surprise that tickets quickly sold out for this sought-after event. But fear not – tickets are still available (though selling fast!) for the Dwell San Diego Home Tours, Nov. 10-11. Dramatic oceanside vistas and sustainable, innovative architecture will be on display among the ten featured modern homes.

Modernist buffs can get a taste of the tours while helping to raise money for Architecture for Humanity by test-driving a NEW Lincoln vehicle at the San Diego Dwell Design & Drive (Nov. 10-11; RSVP for the free event here). Meet architects and designers from homes on the tour; sample fine, chef-prepared cuisine; view Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego (MCASD) La Jolla’s new exhibition Behold, America!; browse student work at the NewSchool of Architecture + Design; and mingle with fellow design lovers, all for a great cause.

View MCASD La Jolla’s new exhibition Behold, America! at the San Diego Design & Drive by Lincoln

RSVP for the free Lincoln/Dwell Design & Drive event online (Nov. 10 & Nov. 11), or purchase San Diego Home Tour tickets here.

Visit the official Dwell Home Tours website for more information.

Spotted: The Hive

Hanging Cloud Lamp, Hae Young Yoon, The Hive

Thanks to a random but kind comment on Facebook, we just discovered and are totally buzzing about The Hive, a Cebu-based design house that acts as a habitat for designers and artisans.  The company made waves in March at Manila Fame when it showcased a bright bunch of young and exciting Filipino designers.  We love the aesthetic and the fact that many of the designers use local materials.  Japan, Korea, watch out!  The Philippines has a bad ass new generation of creative talent coming up fast.

Here’s what we’d put in our imaginary house:

Danny Fang, The Hive

Hong Kong-based Dutch designer Danny Fang takes Filipino Salago pulp and adds some gold leaf bling to create the Checkmate King pendant.  *Love*.

Kenneth Cobonpue, The Hive


These little piggies are designed by The Hive’s founder Kenneth Cobonpue.  The Animal Farm planter, made of crushed local stones, is the perfect addition to the urban patio barnyard.

Hae Young Yoon, The Hive

The light and fluffy Hanging Cloud Lamps by Hae Young Yoon have us dreaming of our upcoming summer respite.

Luisa Robinson, The Hive

And Luisa Robinson‘s Secret Garden mixes metal with roses way better than Axl ever did.  Table runner, wall sculpture, or….dress?  Either way, we covet.


Go: Dwell + Marin Magazine Marin County Home Tour

Photo by Matthew Millman

Fans of modern architecture already know that Marin County is veritable trove of mid-century finds.  Eichler, Frank Lloyd Wright, Raphael Soriano, John Bolles, Francis Joseph McCarthy, Cliff May, and Claude Oakland have all designed homes in the area (or a Civic Center, in the case of FLW), not to mention a new generation of local architects who are taking up the modern mantle.  Later this month, arch-nerds, mid-century fanatics, and lookiloos are invited to get their design fix on the 2nd Annual Dwell+Marin Magazine Marin County Home Tour which will take visitors inside ten of the most notable homes in this picturesque area, starting in Cavallo Point on Friday, April 27th with a Meet the Architects reception for true devotees.  The self-guided tour which takes place Saturday and Sunday, April 28th and 29th from 10am to 4pm will explore Southern and Central/West Marin, respectively.

We wish we could go, but we can’t.  So you guys go and let us know what you think!

Check this out for more information about modern Marin County architecture, in case you’re in the market to buy one.  Or buy tickets to the tour here.

Spotted: Core 77 Preview of New Nendo Housewares at Maison et Objet

Maison et Objet 2012, Core 77, Nendo

Every year we swear to ourselves that one day, we’ll make it to Maison et Objet.  Especially when we see stories like this one.  Core 77 just previewed several new collections by Japanese design heavyweight Nendo set to debut at the show in Paris.  The new collections will be part of a few different exhibits and are not to be missed.  Playing with materials like agricultural netting and glass, Nendo creates housewares that defy the laws of gravity while the “weak” furniture just begs gravity to have a go at it.

For a way better preview, check out Ray’s story on Core 77.  If you’re going to be at the show in Paris, don’t tell us.  We’ll hate you.


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