Product Reviews

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Beehive Grooming & Co.
Art Kieres Furniture
Truss Steel Shelving Brackets, with 38” shelf
Available as a pair of brackets alone—if you’d like to bring your own shelf to the table—or as a complete set with shelf included, the Truss Steel Shelving Brackets will add simplistic beauty and extra room to any space. Art Kieres Furniture offers harvested cherry or walnut shelves (though custom wood options are also available, if you ask nicely) in 22-, 38- or 54-inch lengths. The brackets themselves come in a variety of powder-coated color finishes, though I went with the raw steel option—it’s sexier and goes with just about damn anything. These brackets are built for strength, too—I piled books on the shelf clear to the ceiling, and it didn’t so much as sigh (though I recommend making sure you’ve screwed the brackets into a wall beam before trying that, as drywall can only take so much). Now based in Salt Lake City, Art Kieres Furniture started in Boston back in 2006, producing custom furniture with a minimal environmental impact—Kieres uses wind-generated electricity at his shop, and woods that are sustainably grown and native to the area he works. He also donates money to plant two hardwood trees for every piece sold. If you’re looking for something unique to spice up your spaces, you should definitely check out his inventory—or talk to Kieres at Craft Lake City’s DIY Festival Aug. 8 and 9 about a custom piece just for you. –John Ford
Beehive Grooming & Co.
3-in-1 Classic Shaving Kit, Beard Oil, BG&C Brush
Even just sniffing the different concoctions available in this shaving and grooming kit was enough to get me stoked on Beehive Grooming & Co. Orem, Utah’s Jordan Howa purveys quintessentially classic-feeling Pre-Shave Oil, Sandalwood Shaving Cream, Aged Bay-Rum Aftershave, Beard Oil and a BG&C shaving-cream-applying brush that left my face feeling well-groomed but burly. Wanting to keep my beard, I decided to treat myself to a neck shave. The Pre-Shave Oil, smelling of leather, veritably helps cushion the blade’s abrasion on the skin alongside the Shaving Cream. Upon lathering up the Sandalwood Shaving Cream with a tiny bit of water, I felt the heavenly sensation of applying it onto my neck with the Silver-Tip Badger Hair Brush, whose bristles were soft but sturdy enough for the job. The shave was like butter. After I’d washed my neck with water, my neck was incomparably smooth, especially after having had 3/4-inch hairs jutting out—all by using a standard blue dispensable razor. In fact, the one thing that I wish BG&C would do is make a straight razor to add to their already-impeccable product line (the dinky, blue thing didn’t quite do it). The Aftershave is everything it should be—musky—and the Beard Oil made my beard feel smooth and soft. The scent that stuck out the most was the leather of the Pre-Shave Oil, oddly enough, but it was pleasant. Ultimately, each facet culminated in a final product that was girlfriend-approved as I made her gnocchi after embarrassing Hugh Jackman in an arm wrestle and teaching Ryan Gosling’s unborn baby how to play catch. Look for the Beehive Grooming & Co. booth at the 6th Annual Craft Lake City DIY Festival. –Alexander Ortega
Clifford & Sons MFG.
Morgan Blocks
www.etsy.com/shop/CliffordAndSonsMFG
I am sad to say that in my daughter’s four years of life, she has been missing one of the most basic of toy staples, fortunately for my son; we have been able to intervene before he continues down the dark path of depravity that his older sister was subject to. My kids have their first official set of wooden blocks, and as far as wooden blocks go, they are beautiful. Clifford & Sons MFG. produce a great line of hand crafted wooden toys for the kids—we got a set of the Morgan Blocks which are shaped, sanded, and painted by hand and sealed with an all-natural beeswax polish and come in an equally extravagant custom wooden box. With all of the razzle-dazzle of our new-fangled battery operated toys, I was pleased to see both my 18 month old and my 4 year old both instantly fall in love with their new set of blocks. Towers were erected and destroyed, the colorful patterns adorning each block began to represent imaginary foods, and these sturdy blocks held up to an onslaught of biting, throwing, and banging. You can find the entire line of back to basic toys on Etsy. –Ben Trentelman
CRUDE Personal Care
Everything Oil, Detox Mask, Pull Microfiber Cloth
CRUDE Personal Care’s Everything Oil really is everything. CRUDE Owner Denise Cartwright, a Master Esthetician of seven years, cleared up her problematic skin using oil cleansing, and it worked so well that she started CRUDE, a personal care line that is incredible. The Everything Oil, used as both a cleanser and moisturizer, not only smells amazing, but made my face feel amazing. Before bed, I massaged the oil on my face for about a minute, per the directions tied to the bottle, and wiped it off with a damp, warm, super-soft microfiber cloth. Then, for moisture, I put a few drops on my face. My skin felt protected, and I felt considerably more relaxed than usual—Cartwright makes the stuff with sunflower oil, safflower oil, grapefruit essential oil, ylang-ylang essential oil and bergamot essential oil. In addition to the oil, CRUDE’s Detox Mask is something I’ll definitely be using twice a week from now on. Made with French green clay and matcha green tea powder, the mask smells delicious and feels great. After I rinsed my face, my skin felt rejuvenated. CRUDE’s mission is to promote skincare based on nourishing your skin, instead of, as Cartwright puts it, “fighting” it. I will fight no more. I’ll be stopping by the CRUDE booth at Craft Lake City’s DIY Festival, and you should, too! –Genevieve Smith
Feel Hood by Sandrine Yang
Hooded Scarf
When you’re bundling up to brace the cold of winter (because, in case you forgot, winter is coming), it’s important to have all of the proper accessories for keeping yourself warm. Socks, leggings, undershirts, scarves, gloves and hats are crucial to surviving the season, but can be cumbersome to deal with when you always have to peel these items on and off. With this Feel Hood Stay Hood scarf, though, Yang has created a two-in-one accessory that keeps your ears and neck warm, without sacrificing an opportunity to add a unique pattern to your otherwise drab winter-wear. Each hood-scarf includes hand-painted Indian Batik fabric on knit cotton, giving you the breathability you need if things get toasty. The beauty of scarves lies in their versatility: hood up or hood down, tied in a knot or hung loose around the shoulders, this is one accessory that you’ll want to snuggle up with all winter. Make sure to check out Sandrine’s booth at the Craft Lake City DIY Festival! –Brinley Froelich
Imperiale Forge
Hand-Forged Bottle Opener
Hear ye, hear ye! Surrender thy ales, both hither and thither, for no bottles, thine nor mine, shall survive master blacksmith Michael Miller-Imperiale’s implements of merriment. Seriously, though, this bottle opener works really well, and I feel like a medieval dungeon master using it. Though it’s not as portable as my Epic Brewing Co. keychain bottle opener, it removes bottle caps with minimal effort and no slippage to speak of. Plus, it doesn’t bend the bottle cap itself, in case you are a beer collector nerd and care about that sort of thing. It even works better than the commercial bar-style ones, and it’s made of iron, so it’s obviously durable. The diamond cross-hatching and curly tail make it feel like something Gandalf or Quasimodo would use to open their beer or mead, if they had crown cap bottles back then. Although this bottle opener is very effective and badass, I’d prefer something less adorned as a daily driver—this will find a home hung from a chain in my biergarten (glorified carport), though. In addition to many styles of bottle openers priced from $12 to $60, Miller-Imperiale makes a wide variety of hand-forged things, from jewelry to barbecue spatulas, right here in his Salt Lake City backyard. Look up Imperiale Forge on Facebook for more info, and visit him at the Craft Lake City DIY Festival. –Cody Kirkland
Mamachari Kombucha
Kombucha (vegan, gluten-free fermented tea beverage)
Kombucha is a zesty little bevvy that boasts more than just refreshing hydration. Sweetened black tea is fermented using a kombucha culture (a microbial culture of specific bacteria and yeast called SCOBY) to create a live, raw and vegan health drink that claims the potential to, among other things, help you poop better. Who doesn’t want that? Now, admittedly, these health claims are FDA-not-approved, but I’ve never been one to take their word for it, so I tried it for myself. I can’t say I’ve had much kombucha before, but I do drink some apple cider vinegar mixed with water here and there, which it’s been suggested may have the same kind of probiotic health benefits. It also tastes similar, since it contains some of the same acids and minerals. Mamachari has infused their kombucha with various essences as well, including my favorite, Lemon Ginger, which went really well with the naturally prevalent acidic flavor of kombucha. Concord Grape is yummy, too, for the same reason, and Lavender Oolong, Jasmine Rose and Herbal Rooibos were all subtle undertones that soften the acidity a bit instead. Mamachari Kombucha is available all around town at stores, restaurants and farmers markets, and best of all, they will be slangin’ the goods at this year’s Craft Lake City’s DIY Festival as well. Drink up and poop better! –Ischa B.

 

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