Product Reviews – August 2010

Ugly Duck Skateboards, The Repeater

Ugly Duck Skateboards
The Repeater 8.25”
When I walked into the SLUG office the other day and they handed me a new board by Ugly Duck Skateboards called The Repeater, I was stoked. The shape looked great and the graphic was pretty cool, too. It was an 8.25 and the shape felt as great as it looked—perfect pop and the concave was fairly mellow, perfect for floaty flip tricks. I even had a bunch of the other homies give it a shred at Fairmont and the general consensus is that this board is rad. The graphic is hand-painted and stenciled/screen-printed by the guys at Ugly Duck and then they put a clear coat over the top of it all for a quality look. The only constructive criticism I can offer is if you sanded the clear coat off of blank decks before you painted them, I believe it would stop the paint from chipping off in chunks. I’m not sure who presses the decks for Ugly Duck, but I’d recommend sticking with whoever you have doing it because they’ve got it right. Thanks for the good ride guys, and one love. –Billy Ditzig

Clutch and Bike Pad
As a gal who rides her bike everywhere and prefers the comfort of pocketless leggings, I am oftentimes forced to haul my phone and keys to work in my awesome, but large Velo City backpack (or inside my bra). This is the first reason why I absolutely love the mOde Clutch. The large metal ring allowed me to pack my essentials and rush out the door, the clutch hanging from my wrist or handlebars. Made from tasteful repurposed fabric, each clutch is handmade and limited edition, making it perfect for both a casual bike ride and a hot date. As for the bike pad, the material was chic and it was handy when using my top tube as a seat, but the design was a bit raw and could definitely use some work, seeing as there are better out there. Custom clutches, wallets and bike pads can also be ordered on the website or in-person at her booth this month at Craft Lake City. –Esther Meroño

Miss Amanda’s Arm Candy
Gypsy Girl Purse/Love and Hate Mail Coin Pouch
The instant Miss Amanda’s hand-painted handbag was given to me, I was stoked because it reminded me of something female graffiti legend Toofly would create. The small, thrifted vintage handbag had a gorgeous traditional gypsy lady carefully painted on the side of it with delicate details that pop out due to her stunning choice of colors. I was instantly in love! Squealing with joy, I began inspecting every inch of the artwork and the bag. When I opened the latch to look inside, I found a tiny coin purse wallet with more hand-painted greatness. On one end was a tiny unopened envelope and the word “love” and on the other side, an envelope being sliced with a razor blade saying “hate.” Could this pair of accessories get any cuter? I think not. I will be at Miss Amanda’s Arm Candy booth buying up all her stock at Craft Lake City, so you better get there before me! –Bethany Fischer

Mini Ninja
It’s hard to get good craft these days. Handcraft has become a sort of religion as of late, and the inevitable next step was for national websites and boutiques to start passing off the mass-produced as homemade.  We’re lucky in SLC to have such a deep tradition of hand-crafted products.  The folks behind Radpots and the offshoot Radseams are doing it right. This miniature plush ninja was made by Amy at Radseams, who sells them for ten dollars apiece, and they’re available dressed in standard ninja black, pinstripe and even plaid (‘cause ninjas can’t wear black all of the time).  To test out our ninja, I gave it to my two-year-old son.  He doesn’t snuggle stuffed animals much these days, but he does rough them up and throw them around like he owns ’em.  He took this one to the park and put it down the slide several times.  Sometimes he would chase the ninja down the slide, and other times he would throw it down from the top.  The tiny plush guy held up surprisingly well, as it is made from durable material.  It even wiped clean with very little effort.  My little boy had so much fun with it that he wanted to carry it home and even wanted to take it out with us the next time we went for a walk.  In my book, that is a victory for the ninja.  –James Bennett         

Shogo Clothing
First off, it’s all handmade—what more could you really ask for? Secondly, the fabric is oh-so-soft but oh-so-strong at the same time. From the day I got this tank top from Shogo Fujiwara, I have skated hard and fallen harder, but it has yet to rip anywhere, and I still get comments on how soft the fabric is after all that abuse. How, you might ask? I imagine it’s an ancient Japanese secret. And lastly, I don’t think you can get much more stylish than Shogo Clothing—period. Being made by hand, each article of clothing created is truly a work of art—a living, breathing masterpiece that you can take with you anywhere. To sum it up, if you enjoy the finer things in life and enjoy supporting friends and family, find Fujiwara-san’s gear at Fresh and 50/50 in Layton (so go support these friends too). –Adam Dorobiala

Its the Little Things
Electric Chartreuse feather headband
Urban Trends crackled leather flower headband
From Its the Little Things and The Urban Trends come two fabulous headbands—one for a super dressed-up style and one that that has a bit more of an organic bohemian feel. The feather headband from Jana Crump’s Its the Little Things is crafted on a simple wire headband and features three different feathers—a vibrant green feather, a peacock feather and deep blue, polka dot guinea feathers. The three feathers are decorated with a tiny silver bee and a pearl button. It would be the perfect accessory to tie together a simple black dress. Kira Fleming’s crackled leather headband takes things down a notch and, quite frankly, is a little more versatile and casual. It features two large leather flowers on a simple wire headband. Simply put, both these ladies make very unique hair accessories for between $20 to $25. Stop by their booth at Craft Lake City to fall in love with your fave new piece of hair candy. –Jeanette D. Moses

Spell It Out
Cupcake Wall Chalkboard Sticker
Though we may not be renowned for our cleanliness here at SLUG, we do prefer to avoid working in squalor whenever possible. As such, we have been trying to implement a weekly chore list in our office for as long as any of us can remember—and failing pretty miserably at it. We hoped Spell It Out Designs and their awesome line of chalkboard wall stickers would be able to remedy our forgetfulness and general unwillingness to clean up after ourselves. Spell It Out produces various shapes and sizes of these vinyl decal stickers from ducks to mustaches to sunglasses, but the particular model that adorns our office wall is a giant erasable and re-writable cupcake. Even though it’s in a primo location (between the hand-crafted cover of last year’s Craft Lake City-centric issue and a calendar featuring amateur models of questionable repute), we’ve only written on it once. Many a chore has gone undone over the last few weeks. But Spell It Out could hardly be blamed for our occasionally messy office—that’s why we have interns. –Ricky Vigil

Velo City
Pedal Straps
Like the scene in Breaking Away when the dude tapes his feet to the pedals in the Little 500 race, these straps make you want to smash. I love to ride a bike, I love even more being able to do so in style. Velo City hooked it up. Proper vinyl straps handmade in the SLC. My question is what is taking you and your fixie friends so long to scoop these up? You can get them to match all your brightly-colored bar tape and skinny jeans. These things are tuff as hell too. They may not stay looking fresh after a couple spills, but they stay feeling fresh properly holding your feet to your pedals.  If you’re anything like me, you wonder if cages or pedal straps will scuff up your kicks, these will not, kept my 91’ Structures as OG as possible. They look good, they feel good. Get some and get out there and smash. –Jemie Sprankle

Ugly Duck Skateboards, The Repeater mOde Clutch Miss Amanda's Arm Candy Gypsy Purse Radseams Mini Ninja Shogo Clothing Tank Its the Little Things Electric Chartreuse feather headband and Urban Trends crackled leather flower headband Spell It Out Cupcake Wall Chalkboard Sticker Velo City Pedal Straps