Camp like the '60s
Everyone loves the look of a classic Volkswagen camper bus, and Oregon-based manufacturer Dub Box USA has created a number of eye-catching versions. Each fiberglass-body camper is copied from a post-1967 Type 2 VW bus and weighs as little as 1,800 pounds (about 1,300 less than an actual camper bus), so it can be pulled by smaller vehicles. The basic Dinky Sleeper model sells for $17,000, while the Adventure Camper series starts at $27,300. Options include air conditioning, roof-mounted solar panels, refrigerator, window coverings and retractable awning. Dub Box also makes standard and raised-roof versions for commercial use. Details are at www. dub-box-usa.com.
So, you like to draw?
If you were the kind of student you enjoyed doodling automobiles in study hall, this is the book for you. "I Draw Cars" sketchbook and reference guide contains all of the instructional elements necessary to properly sketch just about any conveyance imaginable. A major portion of this tome includes more than 100 pages devoted to templates while other reference materials help you practice the necessary form and proportion skills. You also get a rundown of various automotive brands, a compendium of design schools for serious instruction and even a list of worldwide auto shows and dates. The book sells for $25 and is available from www.idraw.co (not .com).
Cadillac of jackets
Clothing made from recycled materials continues to catch on as a more environmentally responsible alternative to buying new. Oakland- based Platinum Dirt creates clothing and accessories sourced from the leather seat covers of decommissioned automobiles. For example, the company's line of VIN Jackets (so called because the Vehicle Identification Number plate from the donated vehicle is attached to the product) is made from the stuff. As you can imagine, no two jackets (starting at about $1,500) are alike, but all are painstakingly tailored and include stitched-in brocade (silk) linings. The current inventory includes repurposed leather from Cadillac, Lincoln and Mercedes-Benz vehicles. View Platinum Dirt's inventory at www.platinumdirt.com.
The fertile minds of designers Svetlana and John Briscella of Brooklyn, New York, have created some particularly novel jewelry and accessory themes. Their Aminimal Studio collection of earrings and pendants consists of miniature metal road maps of selected cities in the U.S., including Chicago, as well as worldwide locales. Prices start at $40. See the collection at www.aminimalstudio.com.