↩ Jacob's Ephemerata

A blog of aggregated miscellanea and things I like uncovered from my daily travails. I'm @jacobjay, a peripatetic designer/developer of British persuasion, having interests in gastronomy, fashion, technology, interiors and sustainability. I'm currently living between New Delhi and France, working on a Lua web platform and e-commerce. I dig Macs, mountain biking and smelly cheese.

Aspirational" with Kirsten Dunst by Matthew Frost for Vs. Magazine

«Not your typical fashion short. Between a late Uber and selfie-obsessed fangirls, Kiki gives us a tongue-in-cheek look at celebrity culture and social media.» —FashionTube.

John Cleese on creativity. This first video is just a more recent short extract, summarising some of his thinking, but here’s a longer lecture (from an expensive training video), in which he expounds upon the topic, offering advice in much more detail. He recognises that we need time to be creative, going so far as to say that creativity simply is not possible if we’re constantly distracted and «always checking out watch» (this was 1991!)…

The third factor that facilitates creativity is time—giving your mind as long as possible [uninterrupted] to come up with something original.
If while you’re pondering, somebody accuses you of indecision, say: «look babycakes, I don’t have to decide [until Tuesday], and I’m not chickening out of my creative discomfort by taking a snap decision before then, that’s too easy!»
The next factor is confidence, nothing will stop your being creative so effectively as the fear of making a mistake; you cannot be playful [creative] if you’re frightened that moving in some direction will be wrong, you’re either free to play, or you’re not. You’ve got to risk saying things that are silly and illogical, and wrong, and the best way to get the confidence to do that is to know that while you’re being creative, nothing is wrong, there’s no such thing as a mistake.

He finishes with some excellent advice to stamp out creativity in your organisation and get a bit of respect. 😈

Class action: the fashion brands training tomorrow's artisans 

«There are areas of Europe where high-level craft skills are completely dying out […] struggling to recruit craftsmen fashion companies have moved to tackle the deficit, launching new schools […] Unlike regular institutions, most company-run schools such as Brioni, Berluti and Bottega Veneta’s, are free of charge. Places at others, like the schools of Kiton and Brunello Cucinelli, operate like apprenticeships in that the companies actually pay students a small stipend.»

“Teodora” cuff by Giampiero Bodino (of Richemont and its postgrad design school in Milan) «draws on ancient glass-setting techniques to form a glitteringly precious mosaic of geometric pathways» —Wallpaper*, Oct. ‘14.


Close up samples of Harris and locally sourced Scottish tweed, with embellishment from Pakistan’s talented artisans from the Woman’s Welfare Centre in Rawalpindi. 

I firmly believe in small gestures: pay for their coffee, hold the door for strangers, over tip, smile or try to be kind even when you don’t feel like it, pay compliments, chase the kid’s runaway ball down the sidewalk and throw it back to him, try to be larger than you are— particularly when it’s difficult. People do notice, people appreciate. I appreciate it when it’s done to (for) me. Small gestures can be an effort, or actually go against our grain (“I’m not a big one for paying compliments…”), but the irony is that almost every time you make them, you feel better about yourself. For a moment life suddenly feels lighter, a bit more Gene Kelly singing in the rain.

Jonathan Carroll  (via spuandi)

(Source: onlinecounsellingcollege)

John Hagel: Where Do You Stand? The Shifting Ground of Strategy 

A somewhat unwieldy article, but helpfully summarised with four questions for the time-constrained entrepreneur—or executive:

  1. Am I focused on portions of the business landscape that are concentrating or fragmenting?
  2. Am I participating in ecosystems that will help me to amplify the value that I am delivering to the market?
  3. Am I sufficiently focused on the (few) core competencies that will drive competitive success?
  4. Am I doing everything I can to accelerate and scale learning so that I won’t be blindsided in an exponential world?


I met Michel last year, hosting him via Couchsurfing at my place in France, I’d said he absolutely must start blogging about his experiences busking and travelling the streets of Europe… Well, he’s now doing just that, currently in Portugal visiting festivals, hitching rides on sailboats and watching dolphins! Definitely follow his blog (or here on FB) and apparently also watch out for an upcoming album :)

It’s like a Tiffany lamp! — Zhen & Mossi at Lakme Fashion Week, Summer 2014, Mumbai.

Anonymous said: Out of curiosity, how did you end up with your own online clothing store?


When I was in high school, there was this huge vintage/floral craze and I used to go to thrift stores and buy old floral sheets and cut them up and make 1950’s style dresses with cutout backs and I used to wear them. One day I walked into this boutique store and the owner asked where i got my dress from and I told her I made it and she wanted to sell them in her store. Then that turned into selling them in many stores. I then went on to study fashion, grew a huge passion for styling and started my online Etsy store which later changed to my own domain and here I am now. Although my style has developed and I no longer make clothing out of bed sheets! Haha :)

@abbysingh is one of Moonlighting Delhi’s members, and is plotting a skateboarding startup. Checkout this video of some nascent skating in India!

(Source: youtube.com)

«Feudal networks»

If you’ve not read Bruce Schneier’s book ‘Liars and Outliers,’ his essay ‘The battle for power on the Internet' in The Atlantic is well worth a gander.

[…] we need to work to reduce power differences. The key to all of this is access to data. On the Internet, data is power. To the extent the powerless have access to it, they gain in power. To the extent that the already powerful have access to it, they further consolidate their power. As we look to reducing power imbalances, we have to look at data: data privacy for individuals, mandatory disclosure laws for corporations, and open government laws.

Medieval feudalism evolved into a more balanced relationship in which lords had responsibilities as well as rights. Today’s Internet feudalism is both ad-hoc and one-sided. Those in power have a lot of rights, but increasingly few responsibilities or limits. We need to rebalance this relationship. In medieval Europe, the rise of the centralized state and the rule of law provided the stability that feudalism lacked. The Magna Carta first forced responsibilities on governments and put humans on the long road toward government by the people and for the people. In addition to re-reigning in government power, we need similar restrictions on corporate power: a new Magna Carta focused on the institutions that abuse power in the 21st century.

Al Pioppi, a video by the Fabrica studio, founded by Benetton and providing under 25 research scholarships.

«On June 15, 1969 in Battaglia, Italy a man named Bruno bought a few jugs of wine, some sausages and a few other items and set up a tiny food stand underneath a tree to see if anyone would show up […] he decided he would learn to weld himself and enjoyed it so much he began to dream up small rides he could build to entice new customers to Ai Pioppi. It turned out to be brilliantly successful.» —Colossal

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