reviews

Coffee chemistry by 3.1

Because nobody likes a shit cup of coffee in the mornings

Because nobody likes a shit cup of coffee in the mornings

I used to have a fancy all-singing, all-dancing Nespresso coffee machine, but that has been sat in the downstairs store cupboard for about 3 years now (and probably has things growing in it), and real estate for kitchen appliances is kind of hard to come by in our kitchen, but S got me one of those AeroPress things recently and it's like coffee alchemy.

If you're into having a nice cup of coffee, but don't want/can't get a coffee machine, I'd recommend an AeroPress. They're a bit fiddly to start until you get used to it, but once you do, you can experiment with brew times, vacuum effects and what have you. They're also small enough that they'll fit in a locker or drawer at work if you'd like to have nice coffee at work, and they only need a good rinse under a hot tap after you've finished using all the bits and pieces, so no need to worry about intensive washing up. (Oh – and dishwasher safe for those all-intensive cleans. Bonus.)

At the moment, we're quite into the house blend from Union, a coffee hand-roasted in East London. Not sure whether to take up a subscription with them (as it's cheap enough to pick up a bag from my local Waitrose), but any suggestions are greatly appreciated (S likes a black Americano; I like an espresso shot with a dash of cold milk).

Currently Reading: Johnston & Gill by 3.1

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I've just arrived home from the London Transport Museum's 'Friday Late' celebrating 20th Century Design, where I was invited to the book launch of Mark Ovenden's 'Johnston & Gill: Very British Types'. (I have never been to a book launch before, so I guess this was a bit of practice for the launch of the book that I will be featuring in next year..!)

The book was a welcome addition my bookcase. Johnston & Gill (Hardback, Lund Humphries, ISBN: 9781848221765) covers the development of both these typefaces. It ties in with the centenary of the Johnston typeface and also coincides with Transport for London's 'Transported by Design' campaign this year.

Mark lives locally, so has seen many of my photographs – hence the inscription!

I've had a bit of a cold recently, so being quite interested in both these typefaces has given me an excuse to stay at home for a few days last week where I was able to curl up with my copy of the book that arrived at the start of the week; a couple of my photographs feature in the book to accompany and illustrate Mark's very in-depth look at Johnston and Gill's impact in our society and its visual communication (this includes a photograph of some Granby metal type in my private collection of letterpress paraphernalia – Granby was a copy of Johnston).

If you've got a typography fan in your life, this book would make a great gift, and it's also a great reference for any keen British designer. You can buy the book from Lund Humphries, Waterstones and Amazon, as well as other good bookshops. £40.

This corner of my bookcase is going to collapse under the weight of all the design manuals...

This corner of my bookcase is going to collapse under the weight of all the design manuals...