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D+D DIY: The Perfect Pour Over with On/Off Coffee

The perfect cup of coffee: it's in the ratio. It's in the water temp. It's in the timing. Wait, actually we don't know. That's why we called on the expert advice of On/Off Coffee's Ben Schlief to guide us through the scientific process of making a perfect pour-over for this Dreamers + Doers DIY. 

Ben has been with Urban Outfitters for 12 years, working in Madison, WI and inside the Mall of America before moving east to NYC as an Urban Outfitters display artist. In 2010, he and a group of friends started their own mobile coffee stand called Kickstand Coffee, a collapsible coffee stall wheeled around on a pair of bikes that set up shop at outdoor events, markets, and parks. Today, Ben's job title is Manager of Coffee Concepts (!) at Urban Outfitters, heading up On/Off Coffee, the cafe-within-a-shop inside our NYC 5th Avenue store. From sourcing beans to stocking On/Off with a variety of coffee-making devices and accessories, Ben is an expert on all things caffeinated, and we jumped on the opportunity to have him walk us through how it's done. Photography by Michael A. Muller.

The Perfect Pour-over Coffee
Makes a single, ten-ounce serving 

What you need:

• 26-28g unground coffee + grinder

• 400g water (both for the coffee and for pre-submerging the filter)
• Digital scale 

1. Grind your coffee. 
The grind should be a bit finer than that for a drip coffee machine. I strongly recommend grinding the coffee as close to the brew time as possible."

2. Water temp + Filter Prep.
Water temperature should be between 200-208 F, just below a rolling boil. With your water to temperature and your coffee ground, place the filter in the craft, ensuring the layered portion of the filter is facing the spout side of the vessel. Use the prepared hot water to completely submerge the paper filter. Let the water drip through and discard. This process removes any papery particulate/flavors."

3. "Gently add your coffee grounds to the filter, then clear the scale to zero."

4. The bloom.
"Slowly pour approximately 50g water onto the grounds. Let the coffee rest for 20-ish seconds. This phase is referred to as the bloom: The coffee will begin to expand, bubble, and form a 'crust.'" 

5. Circular pour.
After the 20 second rest, pour in a slow circular motion, breaking the crust from the center of the filter out. Do not direct the stream of the pour directly onto the filter. This is a gentle procedure! Bring the water weight to 400g… then stop."

6. Wait! 
"When the liquid has passed through the filter and is no longer dripping steadily, lift the filter out of the vessel and dispose (a great addition to compost!) This process from start to cup should take about four minutes."

7. Pour and enjoy!

Here are two exclusive On/Off Coffee discounts for UO App users: 

1. Make a purchase at Urban Outfitters in either Tallahassee or NYC's 5th Avenue stores and get 25 percent off On/Off Coffee in those stores.

2. Buy ten drinks and get one free.

Products We Love: Foreo LUNA

The Foreo Luna is quickly becoming one of our staple beauty products, one that leaves us wondering what we ever did before it. (Washcloths are soooo passé.) Made out of a squishy silicone, the Luna gently pulsates to help scrub skin clean. One of the things that we absolutely love about it is how easy it is to clean afterward. Since it doesn't use soft bristles to clean, the silicone ensures that the Luna holds a lot less bacteria than other similar products. Plus, there are no parts that need replacing or updating every few weeks. What you see is what you get. While testing this out, we also discovered that the Luna holds a charge forever (months, honestly), so it's perfect for traveling, especially if you're on the road and unable to reach an outlet.

After using the Foreo Luna for a few weeks, we definitely noticed an improvement in our skintone and, maybe we're imagining things, but we feel like our moisturizer has been sinking in better at night after using the Luna. While our skin isn't super sensitive over here, we're pleased with how gentle the Luna is - if we get all skin paranoid and decide to use it in the morning and at night, our skin doesn't get irritated at all. Comparable products have felt a little more abrasive and have left our skin irritated after using multiple times, so the Luna is great if you're a skincare nut and like to wash your face multiple times a day.

The only limitations to the Luna is that Foreo recommends not using any clay-based or oil-based cleansers, as well as any cleansers with scrubbing beads in them. There are so many inexpensive and effective cream and foaming cleansers, though, that we hardly see it as a drawback. The Luna is great at exfoliating on its own, which means that we don't even miss our cleansers with scrubbing beads. (Plus, we've heard some of those can tear up your skin anyway.) Overall, the Luna gets a solid two thumbs up from us.

We'll be over here petting our baby soft skin if you need anything.

Best cleansers to use:

Mizon Egg White Bubble Cleanser

Farmaesthetics Fine Herbal Cleanser

NUXE Micellar Foam Cleanser With Rose Petals

Skinfood Green Tea Bubble Cleansing Foam

Mizon Acence Anti-Blemish Cleanser


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Dreamers and Doers: Bryan Metzdorf

Dreamers + Doers highlights emerging artists, entrepreneurs, and up-and-coming ones to watch. Whether it’s starting a new business, creating something beautiful, or just daring to do things differently, we stand behind those taking steps toward something new. 

This week we're featuring Bryan Metzdorf, Display Artist at Space Ninety 8 in Williamsburg, who worked for UO in Chicago, Boston, and NYC's Soho store before moving to Brooklyn. From conceiving, constructing, and problem-solving his way through huge installation projects to simply discovering unexpected potential and inspiration in places we would have never thought to look, we're hard-pressed to find something Bryan can't do. We paid a visit to Metzdorf's studio to talk about his art background, creative insatiability, and how he finds beauty in simply looking at things differently. 

How did this all start? 

I have always wanted to be an artist of some type. Growing up I never thought about doing anything else. I went to The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and focused on design. However it was a pretty conceptual and multi-disciplinary school, so I was exposed to many creative outlets. After graduating I worked for several artists, designers, and architects in Chicago, again gaining experience in different creative jobs, and methods and scales of production. 

At the same time I was also working with some friends from school to design objects, and put together events and exhibitions. Needing something a little more steady than the freelance I was doing at the time I applied for a Display Artist position at Urban Outfitters, as it seemed like a job where I could use many of the skills I had picked up, and — most importantly — be creative every day. 

Above: Bryan and crew putting together the stage at this year's Northside Music Festival in Brooklyn

Can you share some sources of everyday inspiration? 

I have always had a pretty insatiable visual appetite, and I’m really inspired by seeing new things, or old things in a new way. When it gets down to specifics, it is a little tricky: I am kind of all over the place, but also very particular. I know very quickly what I like and don’t like, but I’m a big believer that with the right context almost anything can be beautiful or interesting. 

I find inspiration in everything from vernacular buildings to The Memphis Group to fashion design to mineral samples to industrial parts to certain lighting conditions, and on and on. Probably easier to just share my tumblr... 

How would a good friend describe your aesthetic? 
(As described by actual friends:) Geometric, playful, cerebral, elevated, modern, geologic

Offer two pieces of advice to your 20-year-old self. 
Stretch more… 
Stick with it… 

above: Bryan's installation for the Space Ninety 8 A Poster A Day pop-up. 

Your job as a display artist involves a healthy amount of problem-solving—conceptualizing and executing ideas within a limited space. Can you share some stories about particularly challenging projects you figured out or perhaps ones you are most proud of? 

A recent pop-up involved showing 40 large prints in a 10 x 20 foot space (and we wanted to keep the largest wall empty). I came up with some simple “J” shaped fixtures that were placed on an angles, and utilized double sided plastic sleeves, which allowed enough viewing room all around to properly display this artists project. I think the project turned out really well, the artists aesthetic was translated to the overall space, so she was pleased, and even with 40 posters in such a small space it didn’t feel crowded or overwhelming. 

Above: Installations at the recent Gather Journal pop-up at Space Ninety 8

Walk us through a typical day-in-the-life

Read on the train, coffee, answer emails, source materials, order materials, drawing, prototype, more emails, lunch, research, computer modeling, emails, beer after work, read on the train, cook and eat with my girlfriend, look for something new to listen to, try to work on my own stuff, play with our cat, sleep…  

What are five other things you are interested in right now? 

1. I’m still relatively new to NYC, so NYC, and other mega cities like Hong Kong, and Mexico City. 
2. Materials that play with light and reflectivity. 
3. Strange interiors from the 60s, 70s and 80s. 
4. People's interaction with nature / natural geometry and patterns. 
5. Making pickles. 

Complete the thought: 
I like it when… it all comes together 
I never want to be asked… where do your ideas come from? 
Success is… when it all comes together 
My biggest fear is… it not coming together 
I’d like to be… finished 
I’m secretly obsessed with… flowers 
The most fun I ever had… maybe riding (and crashing) a moped on an island in the South China Sea 
I am looking for… I’m just looking… 
My style icon is… creative people throughout history 
I dread… being bored 
I recommend… trying new things 
I couldn’t live without… traveling

See the past videos in our Dreamers + Doers series here:

UO DIY: Neutral Nails

We have long been enamored with Love Aesthetics' Ivania Carpio, the Dutch blogger whose signature whited-out color palette and minimalist sensibility have made her an internationally-recognized and respected voice in fashion blogging. Amid her smart observations and posts on style, home DIY, and beauty, it seems there is nothing Ivania can't put her own uniquely clean, simple, and clever spin on; her cooly minimalist aesthetic is a palette cleanser amid the noise of fashion.

We teamed up with Ivania for a three-part blog collaboration that touches on different areas of her expertise:
an exclusive interview that explores more about her thoughts on style, living with less, and finding inspiration in the everyday; a copper and leather home DIY; and below, a minimalist nail art project.


Nail piercings take me right back to 1998, when I would save up my allowance to buy those tiny rings to put through my nails. Though this nineties-inspired nail tutorial involves some more unexpected tools, it's still simple to complete. You'll also need to take a trip to your local optician (or find a glasses repair kit) to find miniature screws which will serve as industrial looking, real hardware nail piercings. Though putting holes through your nail does weaken them, it's a cool thing to have for a few days if you were planning to cut your long nails anyway. Ivania

-mini screws
-small wire cutter
-superglue/nail glue

1.) Paint your nails. Any color you want!

2.) How to get a hole through your nail: Lay your hand on a flat surface with your palm facing up. From the back of your nail carefully "screw" the pin through with a bit of pressure. If you keep turning the pin between your index finger and thumb you'll get a little hole after a minute or two. Be careful to not just poke it through as it can cause little cracks in your nail.

3.) Shorten the screws by clipping off a millimeter with the wire cutter.

4.) Add a drop of glue and put it through the hole in your nail.

UO DIY: Copper Indoor Swing

We have long been enamored with Love Aesthetics' Ivania Carpio, the Dutch blogger whose signature whited-out color palette and minimalist sensibility have made her an internationally-recognized and respected voice in fashion blogging. Amid her smart observations and posts on style, home DIY, and beauty, it seems there is nothing Ivania can't put her own uniquely clean, simple, and clever spin on; her cooly minimalist aesthetic is a palette cleanser amid the noise of fashion.

We teamed up with Ivania for a three-part blog collaboration that touches on different areas of her expertise:
an exclusive interview that explores more about her thoughts on style, living with less, and finding inspiration in the everyday; a minimalist nail art project; and below, a copper and leather home DIY.


My copper and leather swing has become the most popular seat in the living room since it's been up. It's also such an aesthetically pleasing addition to the space; made from my favorite materials white leather and shiny pink copper, it works perfectly with the rest of my living room. This piece is actually incredibly easy to make and the epitome of my new summer credo "don't forget to play." Ivania

- leather
- sewing machine
- leather needle (for sewing machine)
- strong polyester thread
- two copper tubes, apx. 27cm
- rope (see pictures for examples)
- two clips and two ceiling screws (for hanging)

1.) Take measurements. Cut out a rectangle out of the leather that measures approximately 23cm x 50cm. This can obviously be changed depending on personal size preference.

2.) Depending on how thick your tubes are, create a hem on both ends of your leather for the tubes to go through. Don't leave any extra space but make them exactly the same width, this way the tubes will stay in place tightly. I added a double hem to mine while sewing with the polyester thread to reinforce the swing.

3.) Put the tubes through both the hems, and put the rope through the tubes.

4.) Hanging is probably the trickiest part. Depending on what your ceiling is like, you might have to do a little internet searching to find out which method is best for you, but we found this Apartment Therapy post to be useful when it came time to hanging. Make sure that wherever you choose to hang your swing has a sturdy, preferably wood, foundation (a doorway is a good bet, but make sure you're not screwing into drywall - that will end terribly).

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Dreamers and Doers: Shaun Wallace

Dreamers + Doers highlights emerging artists, entrepreneurs, and up-and-coming ones to watch. Whether it’s starting a new business, creating something beautiful, or just daring to do things differently, we stand behind those taking steps toward something new. 

To kick off the Dreamers + Doers series, we are highlighting the work of Shaun Wallace, the Santa Barbara-based woodworker and builder behind Gopherwood Design/Build. Shaun got his start as a UO Display Artist in 2009, and has since gone on to develop his own brand, where he conceives and constructs projects ranging from intricately hand-turned wooden bowls to large-scale installations. Talented, humble, and hard-working, we keep collaborating with Shaun as much as we can — most recently, he was part of a team that constructed an complex three-part display build-out inside the new location of our Westwood store, relocating down the street into an expanded space later this month. 

We asked Shaun to let us follow him around for the day and learn more about how he works, what influences him, and how taking on challenges produces the biggest rewards. 

Above: Shaun at Westwood — all in a day's work

How did this all start? 
I grew up in Huntington Beach in the '80s. It was a time of expansion for most the communities in Southern California and my father worked as a framer all over the Southland. As early as age 15 I was working summers on jobs in LA, Orange County, and the Inland Empire. I was a laborer at first, but as I got older and more skilled I was introduced to all the general tools of woodworking. I fell away from construction during college and worked as a butcher for a number of years. 

During this time I began painting ply panels as gifts for friends, a creative outlet that eventually landed me a job as a visual merchandiser for Nordstrom. [Then in 2009] I found a great fit for my passion at Urban Outfitters as a Display Artist in Santa Barbara, an area where I still live and work. While working with UO I was fortunate enough to travel all over the US and Canada and meet dozens of other craftsmen and artists. This period is where I really got serious about what I do: I rented a small shop and started working nights and weekends for friends and clients who found me by way of UO. I was also making small goods in the shop when work was light. I made a set of wooden brass knuckles for some friends at the UO home office and a live edge ray gun for a charity auction…[and also] started making them for sale at [UO stores]. I left Urban Outfitters two months ago to go full-time with my company, Gopherwood Design/Build

Above: The register build-out and details within Shaun's recent project at the new UO Westwood location.

Can you share details about the recent Westwood store project you worked on?
This Westwood project consisted of three separate areas of the men's store sharing a consistent build: a 16x18 foot wall, a 12x12 foot stand display, and a cash-wrap station. From the get-go I saw an opportunity to hone my router skills by incorporating a quarter-inch dado [a groove cut into one piece of wood so that another piece of wood will fit tightly] in all of our horizontal boards and joints. We agreed it would elevate the detail and strength of the build, as well as speed up installation.

We milled and ripped for a couple days, installed framework and built interior frames for about three more, and finally installed everything pictured in about a day and a half with the aid of a couple scissor lifts.  

Can you share some sources of inspiration? 
I like drives on the 101 to the north: the ranch lands of the central coast are awe-striking. 
Talking shop with my dad for hours. 
Walking my friend Don’s sawmill up in San Luis Obisbo. 
The work that other dudes put on Instagram (check out @Etrine, that guy’s next level). 

How would a good friend describe your aesthetic? 
Heavy! Everything I make weighs too much. Or maybe something like: raw, contradictory, and fun. 

Above: Various projects at different stages of progress, via Instagram

Offer two pieces of advice to your 20-year-old self. 
1. When given the choice between the easy thing and the hard thing, do the hard thing. It’s never a waste of time or talent. When you have the strength and patience to strive through adversity the rest of life is easy. 

2. Give of yourself. Whether you donate talent, money, or time. Giving is a key source of happiness. It’ll keep you humble. 

What one thing you’ve made are you most proud of? Alternatively, tell us a story about something you made that was a huge flop. 
Most proud of: A month ago I built a mid-century dry bar for a client here in town. It was my first attempt at fine cabinetry. It had inset lighting, custom glass doors and mirrors, push touch drawer sliders, and drop-leaf bar surface. The whole thing was very clean and worked beautifully. 

Flop: I made a simple bench a couple years ago. It was made using some pine that we salvaged from a sawmill's trash pile. It was big, beautiful, and looked bulletproof. And it was, until the summer sun hit 90 degrees. The thing started oozing pitch like a stuck pig. Now every summer I have to go back to the restaurant where the bench is and refinish it. It’s still barely usable on one end. Now I pay for the kilning no matter what. 

Walk us through a typical day-in-the-life. 
7am. Instagram. Coffee. Emails. Design time if needed. Shopping if needed, this involves the very important BS session with the local vendors. Back to the shop and turn on the dust collector, get dirty for a few hours. Lunch in my courtyard. Emails again. Back to the machines. Make dinner plans with the lady. Glue and clamp for tomorrow or sand and lay down a primer coat. Sweep the shop and game plan for tomorrow. Wednesday and Thursday evenings my apprentice comes and we’ll work until 8pm. I also keep the grounds for my church so there’s a lot of small tasks that I'll throw in to the mix to keep it interesting. 

Above: More Urban Outfitters build-out projects

Can you share some items on a recent to-do list? 
For my last project I did 44 side tables for the Alamo Motel. That project looked something like this:

Glue up 6x6 fur beam to 18x18x24 block for sample table. 
Chain saw to geometric footprint, add leather and tack. 
Sample approval and materials deposit. 
Send sample to mill for duplication. (Request kiln dry!!!) 
Shop for leather (4 full sides, one double shoulder).
Order tacks and fabric guard online.
Home Depot for polyurethane, sandpaper, tack hammer, etc. 
Receive delivery of table blanks, pay mill. 
Sand and polyurethane 44 of these 65-pound chunks of pine. 
Rough and finish cut leather tops. 
Adhere leather to wood, bevel finish, and saddle soap. 
Wipe down and fabric guard. 
Hand-nail 100 antique finish brass round top tacks to each table. 
Stack in the corner and order the U-Haul. 
Load Drive up to Los Alamo and unload. 
Try and talk Chris into making the beds too. 
Cross fingers and make bed sample. 

Above: A table for the Ojai Rancho Motel in Ojai, CA.

Complete the sentence: 

I like it when…it rains 
I never want to be asked...for a refund 
Success is…just being happy 
My biggest fear is...going blind 
I’d like to be…in Thailand
I’m secretly obsessed with…awful romantic comedies
I am looking for…a foot massage 
I dislike…forgetting my sunglasses 
My style icon is…Chris Woodhead 
I dread…lock 
I am good at…making pancakes 
I am bad at…keeping a diet 
I recommend…Tom Waits 
I couldn’t live without…salsa

All images courtesy of Shaun Wallace

UO DIY: Scrapbooking

After visiting Tulum recently to shoot our newest lookbook, we had so many new Instax photos that we didn't know what to do with all of them. Rather than hang them up, we decided to start a scrapbook/journal hybrid for them, so we could keep all our pics in one spot and also write down some of our favorite memories. Instagram is good but when it comes to keeping track of a bunch of photos, sometimes it's best to go back to a good ol' fashioned notebook. Read on to see what we did!

If you, like us, take a boatload of photos, you'll want to sit down before scrapbooking to decide which pics you want to include and which pics you're going to shove in a box somewhere. It's also nice to be able to look at everything in front of you before you start working, just so you can make sure you have everything you need. Above were our basic supplies for this project. The notebook we're using to start out is this super fun (and bright!) unruled Leuchtturm journal.

Keep It Simple
It's easy to want to throw five pictures on each page with 30 different artistic touches, but it usually (not all the time!) looks better when the clutter is kept to a minimum. (But if you've figured out how to make clutter look amazing, give us a call, because we love glitter and stickers.)

Washi Tape
We love washi tape for scrapbooking because 1) it's adorable and 2) it's the easiest way to adhere pictures. You don't even have to worry about doing the roll of tape on the back because it looks perfect taped right on the front. We're also pretty lazy when it comes to crafting, so it's nice to have something that's so versatile and easy to use.

Obviously stamps are a great way to add some excitement onto your scrapbook pages. You can get literally anything on a stamp these days, which is perfect for those of us less artistically inclined. Can't draw a cat? Stamp it! Boom. Done.

Mixed Media
We liked the idea of mixing in some souvenirs and cards we found, just to round out the whole scrapbook a little bit better. For some of our backgrounds, we bought printed paper in Mexico that we then cut out and taped into the book to give our pages a more colorful background. A pack of beachy playing cards also looked nice mixed in with everything, so we stuck them in there, too.

Stickers are THE BEST. You can put them on pictures, use them to stick pictures to the page, and decorate the page with them. It's super easy to go overboard with them. (We maybe went a little overboard. It's fine.) But hey, if you love stickers, there are some giant books of them out there that will let you sticker to your heart's content.

Shop Travel Journal Essentials

UO x Converse: Herald Square

Every Wednesday through Sunday in June from 11am-8pm come to the Herald Square UO location (1333 Broadway) and get your Chucks customized with our special Converse printer. There are hundreds of designs to pick from, so there's sure to be something for everyone. To get your kicks customized, all you have to do is purchase a pair of Converse from the Herald Square store. The customization itself is completely free, so once you pick out your favorite pair of sneaks, you're good to go.

For more info on Herald Square, click here.

UO Beauty: Christina Rinaldi x Bing Bang

Nail artist Christina Rinaldi of Prima Creative sat in at our Bing Bang NYC launch party last week and made sure everyone who wanted one received a custom manicure that perfectly matched our newly launched BBxUO jewelry line (think delicate and gold). Since we aren't ready to let our manicures chip away forever just yet, Christina provided us with an easy tutorial, along with some of her favorite tips and tricks. Katie

Kintsukuroi Manicure Tutorial
Kintsukuroi = "to repair with gold"; the Japanese art of repairing pottery with gold or silver lacquer and understanding that the piece is more beautiful for having been broken.

Base Coat
UO Nail Polish in Optic
Liquid adhesive
White Gold Foil*
Top Coat

Step 1 : Clean, file, buff, base coat.
Step 2 : Paint base color. Keep in mind this look works best with high contrast colors - pick something that’s either drastically light or dark to ensure your foil stands out the most.

Step 3 : Using liquid adhesive, start from one point anywhere on the nail and draw 2 lines extending out from that point. Make the lines thinner at one end to achieve the broken aesthetic. Let dry and apply foil.

Step 4 : Apply your favorite topcoat.**
Step 5 : Admire your Kintsukuroi Nail Art

*Pro Tip : If you do not have foil, you can achieve this look using your favorite gold metallic polish.
**Note : Topcoat will cause foil to shrivel which, in this case, will add to our aesthetic, however it is not recommended for large foiled areas.

About Christina:

I'm originally from the midwest, and have been in Brooklyn for about seven years now. I’ve been painting designs on my nails and friends' nails for as long as I can remember. I became more serious about it when I noticed the popularity my designs were gaining on social media.

My favorite design is anything that has an unexpected element to it, whether it be a beautiful floral with a gold foil handgun or a clean, simple nude nail that has freckles.

The longest I’ve spent on nails was
a solid six hours on a very elaborate full set.

My holy grail products are Seche Vite topcoat and RGB cuticle oil. I take both with me everywhere I go.

I’m particularly inspired by Maurizio Cattelan and Pierpaolo Ferrari of Toilet Paper Magazine. Their concepts are fascinating and I truly love they way they make me think.

This summer I'm listening to
Kelela, Party Next Door, HU₵₵I, Spooky Black.

My favorite spot to go in the summer is McCarren Park Pool.

Read full Bing Bang x UO feature

UO DIY: Plant Hanger

During our outdoor potted plant DIY at our Malibu store, we had one of our talented associates give us her (easy) step-by-step guide on how to make our very own plant hangers. Read on for full instructions, then go make your own! (And we promise, even if you don't have a single Martha Stewart bone in your body, you'll be able to make this.)

DIY Plant Hanger Instructions

Spool of cord
(something durable, can be found in jewelry aisle of craft stores)
Key ring
Small potted plant

1) Cut 4 lengths of cord, about 10 inches longer than you want the planter to be when finished.

2) Fold the 4 cords in half at their midpoint. Slide the key ring up to the midpoint and tie a knot to keep it in place.

3) Separate the 8 cords into groups of two. About 8 inches down from the key ring, you are going to tie a basic square knot with the first two cords.

4) To tie the square knot, loop the two cords over each other, as if you're about to tie your shoelaces. Then loop the cords around each other a second time, leading with the opposite cord you started with.

5) Follow this step for the remaining groups of 2 cords. You should be left with 4 knotted strands. 

6) Grab a friend to hold your plant hanger up, or hook the key ring to something. Take the right cord from the first set, and the left cord from the second set about 10 inches down from the knots you've already tied. Tie another square knot.

7) Repeat this with the right cord from the 2nd set, and the left cord from the 3rd set. Continue with the remaining cords.

8) Gather all the cords together and tie in a big knot.

9) Fit your potted plant inside the hanger and enjoy!

Read full Get Outside feature

UO DIY: Flower Crown with Lisa Przystup

Lisa Przystup, a floral designer drawn to the wild over-growths of the countryside, is the talented woman behind James's Daughter Flowers. Her flower crowns can be seen in our recent Stone Cold Fox feature, as well as at Space Ninety 8 this month. Since we're so clearly smitten with her creations, we decided to find out a little more about her and to get some tips for making our very own crowns.
Interview by Katie Gregory

Hey Lisa! How did you get into flower design?
I was working as a freelance writer and I had noticed what seemed to me to be a certifiable trend of lovely, stylish Brooklyn ladies getting into floral design and thought they would be perfect fodder for the New York Magazine’s The Cut’s Style Tribe column. After visiting the designers' studios and interviewing them, I just fell for flowers. I found myself buying cheap bodega flowers and augmenting them with a few precious and expensive stems from Sprout Home. I realized that I actually really enjoyed doing this, and that I wanted to learn more and get better. This past fall I assisted a florist and quietly decided that maybe I would give this a go.

How did you get involved with Space Ninety 8?
I met this lovely crew of super inspirational women when I ended up modeling for Helen Dealtry’s lookbook (a featured Brooklyn designer at Space Ninety 8). These ladies all have studios in Greenpoint in a courtyard that is just so chock full of talent: MCMC Fragrances, Odette, and Bailey Doesn’t Bark all call Dobbin Mews their creative home and they all happen to be featured in Space Ninety 8. These little enclaves are really what make creating in New York so special.

Where do you pull your inspirations?
The wild overgrowth and lines found in nature. The MET. The astounding work of other super talented florists who are light years ahead of me.

How To: Make Your Own Flower Crown

- Floral wire
- Floral tape
- Wire cutters (to cut the wire)
- Sharp scissors or flower clippers (to cut the flowers)
- Household scissors (to cut the tape)

Flower crowns are so much fun and really easy to make. You’ll need floral wire and floral tape – you can find this at almost any floral supply store online. I recently found this great twine covered floral wire that is heftier and provides a sturdier base for the blooms.

1. Wrap the wire around your head for size, leaving a little extra length. Clip it and fashion two u-shaped hooks that you can hook together – these can be bent and adjusted to size.

2. Now for the flowers: you’ll want some greens for filler and then a handful (it’s really up to you) of about six different types of blooms of various sizes. You’re going to start by trimming the stems, leaving them about three inches long and making small mini bouquets - grasp a spring of filler and one to two flowers, wrap the stems in the floral tape (leaving three to four extra inches of tape) and set it aside. Repeat varying the blooms and greens – once you have a handful of these mini bouquets you can start attaching them to the crown.

3. Take your first bundle and attach it to the wire crown using the extra tail of tape – wind it tightly and securely. Add your next bundle with the flowers covering the stems of the first set you attached, this way you’ve camouflaged the stems. Repeat. You can fill the whole crown with blooms, leaving the larger ones toward the front of the crown or you can just fill half of the crown. Where you stop is entirely up to you.

For the crowns I made for the Stone Cold Fox shoot I chose not to fill the whole crown with blooms – I liked that the negative space drew more focus to the blooms that were there.

You can mist the crown with water and put it in a Ziploc bag to keep in the refrigerator until it’s ready to wear. The sad reality of flower crowns is that they won’t last long – the flowers have no water, so they pretty much have a shelf life of two to three hours. Cherish them.

Read the full Stone Cold Fox feature

UO Beauty: Spring Nails

Since we’ve finally made it through the winter (the horrible, terrible winter) and have a fresh new batch of nail polishes available, we thought this would be the perfect time to get our nails all done up for Spring. Heading out after work with our favorite polishes in tow, we visited Heritage Nails in Philadelphia where nail artist Hani Na worked her magic on us. See the result of her hard work below, as well as some of our favorite tips and tricks for keeping nails lookin’ gooood. Katie

UO Parisian and Art School polishes

1. Use oil to set your manicure. There's like, real nail oil you can use, but in my obsessive perusing of the internet, I've learned that cooking oil does the trick just as well. Just make sure you're careful with where you're spraying or you'll end up with a fine mist of cooking oil on everything you own.

2. This Nail Rescue Kit is actually one of my favorite things in the entire world. The little cuticle snipper is highly addictive. If I don't have time for a real manicure (which is basically all the time), I like to clean up my cuticles and then moisturize with Egyptian Magic. Top it all off with a fresh coat of polish and it's almost as good as going to the salon.

UO Left Bank polish

3. For fine, straight lines, it's always possible to freehand designs with Nail Art Pens, but if you've got shaky baby hands like me, then using Scotch tape to block off sections is always a better option. Just make sure that you stick the tape on your hand a couple of times to get rid of some of the stickiness before putting it on your nails. The Beauty Dept. has some good examples of taped off manicures.

UO Blue Jean and Optic White polish

4. If you're super bad at painting on only your nails, another good trick is to rub some Vaseline or lotion on your cuticles before painting. That way, if you end up smushin' some polish on there, it'll be easier to take off. (I know some people who paint their fingers all willy-nilly and then take a shower to remove the excess nail polish from their cuticles, but that just seems soooo tedious. PRO-TIP FOR YOU.)

5. If you have some nail polish that has thickened over time, DON'T PUT NAIL POLISH REMOVER IN IT! It's a good quick fix if you're antsy, but over time, it'll just make the nail polish even weirder. Instead, pop some clear polish in there. It should thin the polish out enough to use it again and it won't break down over time like nail polish remover would. MAGIC.

Shop Nails

UO DIY: Spring It On

Wish List: Spring Equinox

The first day of spring (which is today if you’re in the Northern hemisphere) is kind of like nature’s version of New Year’s Day. The trees are finally starting to blossom. The days are getting longer. The nights are getting warmer. It’s also the time of year that most people feel compelled to spring clean and start fresh, which is quite fitting considering the Vernal Equinox (as it’s formally called) represents new beginnings. It’s been celebrated as such since ancient times when our ancestors threw huge revelries to bless the freshly planted seeds for the coming year’s harvest. It’s also the end of the astrological year as Pisces moves into Aries, so in essence, nature and the cosmos are perfectly set-up to help you let go of the old and make space for the new. With that in mind, we created a simple ritual to make the most of this magical season.Madeline Giles

You Will Need
Two crystals
Journal and pen

1. Light candle, take a deep breath and relax. You might want to put on a playlist of songs that make you feel inspired. (I recommend Pure Bathing Culture for ultimate relaxation grooves.)

2. At the top of your journal page write a statement of positive intention. (I like: “I ask for this or something better for the highest good of all concerned.”) Then, begin writing what you would like to manifest. If you feel inspired to write in a list format, begin each sentence with: “I am easily finding myself _______.”

3. When you feel complete, reread the list – and do your best to imagine yourself engaging in these activities. If you feel like you can’t possibly imagine it, then go for a walk and come back to the ritual. It’s important to be in a peaceful and imaginative state when writing your intentions.

4. Imagine all your desires being soaked up into the two crystals in front of you. Know that you don’t have to “do” anything to make this happen. Simply setting the intention will allow it to happen.

5. Find a spot outside where you can safely dig a tiny hole. Bury one of the crystals in the ground. This is symbolic of surrendering your desires to the Earth, while metaphorically “planting” them.

6. Place the other crystal and your list of intentions next to your bed. Reread it at night before you go to sleep and every morning when you wake up. You can refine the list with new intentions as you wish.

UO DIY: Converse Customization

Down in Austin, we had two of our favorite local artists, Sophie Roach and Josh Row, customizing shoes for two days at our downtown store. While shoppin' around one morning, we had Sophie customize some Chucks just for us, and we love how they turned out. (They might even inspire some ideas for your very own DIY kicks.) Now that we realize how easy it is to do ourselves, we're about to buy some sneaks in bulk and get to CRAFTIN'. To customize your own Chucks, all you'll need is acrylic paint, fabric paint or paint pens. That's it! (The acrylic and fabric paint will hold up better than other paints on the shoe, and the paint pens are good for details.) Anything else you'd like to add is up to you. We stuck some pins on ours because we're unable to resist the call of anything Breakfast Club related, but adding studs, colored laces and glitter is an option as well. Check out our kicks below. Katie

Employee creations

Sophie hard at work

Our custom shoes by Sophie (and our totally fake Polaroids)

So many choices

We loved Josh's cat shirt, as well as his "DANG" shoes

Fine Print: The Le Sigh

Since its launch last winter, The Le Sigh has been an online cool girl clubhouse of sorts. With consistently excellent indie music and arts coverage along with a strong allegiance to zine culture, The Le Sigh is one of the best well-rounded blogs in cyberspace today. This month, the Le Sigh girls will be moving to print with THE LE SIGH Vol. 1, a full color publication. The contributor list reads like a who's-who of Tumblr It-girls with work from Grace Miceli, Laurence Philomene, Lauren Cook, and more.

But the glossy, bubblegum pink-tinted zine is not the only thing these ladies have up their sleeves. The Le Sigh is partnering with Brooklyn-based record label Birdtapes to put out a girls-only tape compilation featuring acts such as the twee singer-songwriter Frankie Cosmos and the raucous punk band Priests. The publication and tape, which will be available for purchase online November 18th, will debut at The Le Sigh zine launch party November 17th at Silent Barn, which features performances from musicians on the tape like Whatever Dad, Lizard Kisses, and more. Hazel

You Should Totally Be This For Halloween: A Loving Friend

When you become an adult, Halloween becomes less about ingesting dangerous amounts of candy and more about coming up with a super clever, funny, topical but ironic costume. The stress to outwit your friends can be paralyzing, so in college I decided rather than compete with my friends, I'd just dress up as one of them.  


This option works best if the person is well-loved and has an easily identifiable style. When I went as my friend Tim, which required only a flannel, jeans and a pair of New Balance, everybody still got it. You have to choose that type of person. The above photo shows me dressed as my friend Bob (left) with my friend Bob (right). Everyone in the world loves Bob, because he is the best, and everybody knows he wears big glasses and, often, a zip-up jacket. At the time, Bob worked at the Vans store, so I made a fake Vans name tag that said "Bob: Manager/Dreamboat." Let me tell you — the costume was a hit. Also, this works best if the person you're impersonating will be at the same party you're attending, otherwise it's kind of weird.

A disclaimer for any potential mean people out there: this is not about making fun of someone. It's not about wearing a trucker hat because "lame ass Jeff always wears a stupid trucker hat." It's about admiration, lighthearted fun and also being lazy about Halloween costumes. If the costume isn't somebody everybody will recognize and enjoy, it's borderline creepy. Okay, it's borderline creepy anyway, but in a cool way, I swear. Angelo

If you happen to have a friend who's exactly the same as Bob, here's how you can get the look:

Granger Readers

K-Way Claude Windbreaker Jacket

Vans Checkered Slip-On Sneaker

DIY: Goosebumps Nail Art

If you are a fan of the Goosebumps series, and Halloween, and FUN, then you'll definitely want to try out this super easy nail tutorial. It seriously takes only a few minutes, and is easy enough for even me, a DIY failure, to execute, which is a real feat. We chose to do this mani in orange and blue because it matched our favorite Goosebumps book, but obviously you can do it in any color combination. LET YOUR IMAGINATIONS RUN WILD, CHILDREN! Let us all bask in the glorious nostalgia of the '90s with this nail mani. Here's how to get it! —Katie

Get the look:

We chose to use these two polishes! The pen set is great for doing lots of fine details on your nails. The tip is very, very fine. The orange we used is 'Tiny Short' from our UO nail polish, but any polish will do!

NPW Pastel Paint Pens Set

UO Kimchi Blue Collection

Next up...

...paint your nails! If you don't know how to do this, then you're on your own. Put on a couple coats if you're feeling CRAZY. But since the next step is the nail pen, make sure all nail polish is completely dry before you move forward. Otherwise you'll just wreck all your hard work with the hard point of the nail pen.

Once your nails are dry, uncap that nail pen and draw on some drips. Don't worry about being precise. The drippier, the better. The tip of the nail pen makes it easy to spread the nail polish down toward the middle of your nails. Just make sure you don't put the polish on there too thick, because then it'll take forever to dry. (If you don't have a nail pen, you can always use a toothpick in any ol' polish.)

SEE? WOW! We got this done in only a few minutes, and we are in no way experienced nail art artists. Once you've got the drips on (and they're DRY!), go over the whole nail with a top coat. I mean, you don't have to if you're feeling antsy, but it'll obviously make your nails last a whole lot longer.

VOILA! Finished Goosebumps nails. They're so spooky I'm getting GOOSEBUMPS. HEY-OOOOO. And that's it! You're done!

If you try this manicure out, let us know! We love to hear from you guys. Happy Halloween, y'all.

Tumblr: Very Cool Pumpkins

Have you seen the Very Cool Pumpkins Tumblr yet? It's the most important thing in my life right now, because it has very amazing jack-o-lantern stencils. It looks like it's brand new to the Tumblr world, but it already has a Heisenberg stencil, a Drake stencil and even Young Oprah. This is incredible. Get me 1,000 pumpkins, stat. —Katie

Interview: Tepsic Magazine

Tepsic Magazine is the large-format brainchild of Morgan Tepsic, who sends customized disposable cameras to artists and asks them to document their lives. The results are poster-sized spreads of a rarely seen perspective; a trip behind the scenes with musicians like recent cover subjects A$AP Rocky and Toro Y Moi. I spoke with Morgan about the simplicity of disposable cameras, making a DIY magazine and what's next for the mag. Angelo

When did you first realize you wanted to make magazines?
I don't think I ever realized that I wanted to make magazines, really. I just really wanted to share with people great pictures and art from artists that I really respected and liked. I guess magazines were really just the cheapest outlet for me to get stuff I liked out there. The first time I worked on a magazine was in 2009 when I contributed some weird art for a friend's zine. But I wanted to take a concept of a magazine and see how far I could take it.

What drew you to disposable cameras?
The most important thing to me was getting cameras out to as many artists as possible, and so that really left me with no other choice than disposable cameras. But then after I began decorating them for the artists, I really embraced the realness that disposable cameras capture. It can be spontaneously glamorous at times and capture the energy of the night really well, because people aren't afraid of being themselves with a dinky, funky looking camera around. The camera becomes a part of the party and knows that the next night everyone is gonna forget about the pics they took anyway. That's the beauty of it. A camera that's hidden in plain sight.

To me, the large format is nostalgic to when my room used to be plastered with posters and magazine covers. Is that a vibe you were going for? 
Exactly. I remember my brother having a stack of Transworld mags that went up like 5 feet, and I would just spend all day picking out my favorite pics from different issues. I never understood why music magazines were heavily focused on the opinion-side of things. If I had the choice to pay good money to spend on nothing but dope pictures or pages filled with opinions I may not agree with and corny interviews, I'm gonna want the pics every time. I'm doing the magazine for those people who dig looking at pictures.

How do you typically approach an artist you want to feature? How has the response been from musicians?
The approach has always been from the standpoint of a fan. Once the artist realizes that there is a mutual understanding of art in its many forms and how their contribution would be dope, then it's cake. The response has definitely changed since the first issue. I got ignored by a lot of artists that I ended up printing in future issues because THEY contacted me. Just goes to show being persistent pays off.

People like A$AP Rocky, Toro Y Moi, even Anthony Bourdain — those are huge gets. Do you feel like now nobody is out of your reach? Who's somebody huge you would love to feature in Tepsic, or can you give a hint at who might show up in the next issue or two?
Nobody is out of my reach. I may not get an artist immediately when I want to, but I usually find a way to eventually explain to their crew what I'm doing is something they need to be a part of. I'm never going to give out hints of who's in the next issue, but I will say that I would print an entire issue shot by Kanye if I ever got the chance. I need to get that on the record just in case he's out there shopping on UO or something.

The mag is almost entirely image based. Is that a direct refusal of text-heavy publications? Do you plan to feature more writing in the future or is Tepsic inherently an image driven project? 
I'm not going to say I'll never feature writing in the magazine, because at the end of the day it's a magazine created by the artists if an artist felt the need to express themselves using text, then I wouldn't be opposed to it. But as for now, I like to keep it with as many photos as possible without anything you don't need. I'm creating a personal commentary between the pictures the artists take and the readers of the magazine. 

What advice would you give to kids who want to make magazines but think it might be too hard or expensive?
If you're strapped for cash use a Xerox machine and do what you can. Letting loose of your creative side is the best thing you can do for your mind. Even if the project you're working on kinda sucks, it's still one step closer to another great idea/project/whatever. The first magazines I ever made were used making a simple word-processing app that was free, and if you don't have a computer then I'm wondering how you can read this right now.

Who are 3 artists you're especially digging right now?
Kanye, Drake, DJ Shadow 

Where do you see Tepsic in 3.66 years? 

I'm not gonna stop evolving and changing how I deliver the message of Tepsic. Times change, people change what they like, technology changes how we see things and I change my mind pretty much every 30 minutes. But if you stick around for the ride, I guarantee the journey is exciting to watch.

DIY: Make Your Own Terrarium

In case you haven't noticed, terrariums are all the rage right now. Like me, you probably wanted to get a bunch to put in your room or office, but weren't sure how! Well, you're in luck because making terrariums is probably the easiest DIY you can think of, all you need is a few easy to find supplies, plus something to put those all in! The other day in Malibu, Urban Outfitters opened a brand new store. To celebrate, we had this great DIY terrarium session I'm about to recap for you. To start, you can find tons of terrariums and planters on our website and in stores right now! Get ready to make the room decorations of your dreams. Maddie

First, you'll want to start with a glass vase sort of thing, aka a terrarium! They come in lots of geometric shapes, some that sit on a surface, or can hang from a tree. We even have light-bulb shaped ones. You can purchase any kind you like right here.

Next, you'll want to gather your materials to go inside of your terrarium. I'm thinking various plant matter, like air plants, moss, and things like that. It is best to choose plants you don't have to water that much, since personally I feel that the point of terrariums is to have them be self-sufficient, aka, you only water them about once a week. Succulent plants work well too! Also grab some sand or smaller pebbles, some larger rocks for decoration, and any other fun things you'd like to put inside, like the little dinosaur I put inside.

Once you've gotten everything together to make the terrarium, its time to start assembling! Start with filling the bottom of your container with sand or small pebbles. Not too much! You don't want it to be overfull, gotta have room for all of the other things.

Here's an example with smaller rocks at the bottom.

Then start to fill with your plants and rocks!

Once you've put everything inside your terrarium, add your last minute touches, like my little dino pal here, or whatever you want! You could put vintage pins, little figurines, crystals, basically all of the above.

After that, you're essentially done! You can arrange everything inside however you'd like, its usually best to put the first layer of rocks or sand, then the plants, then embellishments. That way, everything will stay put. Here are some examples of the terrariums that came out of the event!

Like what you see and want to make your own? Get started on your terrarium here, and get decorating!