Saturday, December 18, 2010

2010 Buying Guide – simplehuman

My love of simplehuman products is deep and vast.  It just doesn’t feel like a year end review without covering some items of genius for the home from the one company that seems to solve all my domestic problems.  Everyone knows I’m relatively un-domestic.  I don’t want to have to DEAL with household furnishings.  I want stuff that is simple, easy and solves my problems.  The other thing most people don’t realize is that most of the stuff I’m talking about, like the Tension Shower Caddy I reviewed last year and the Steel Frame Dishrack I reviewed last Summer, are things you use all. The. Time.  You shower, you eat, you live your daily life in your home.  It makes sense to get the good stuff that lasts and looks good.

napkinholder For this round, I’m really excited about three products I’d like to introduce you to.  Let’s kick it off with the Quick Grip Napkin Holder which holds approximately 75 quadrifold napkins while allowing you to pull out just one napkin at a time.  The weighted tension arm simultaneously works as a paperweight while keeping the stack neat.  The sleek stainless steel style makes it totally all about the napkins.   This is great for outdoor events or heck even when I have my kitchen window open.  Your typical “vertical letter holder style” napkin holder is ridiculous compared to this.  I had inexpensive, bumpy textured, lower weight napkins stacked in the Quick Grip and was able to easily remove the top one without disturbing the stack.  This holder is also ideal for toddlers, as in my family, who can just grab for the top napkin.  The Quick Grip Napkin Holder is $19.99, has a 5 year warranty and also comes in a bamboo version.

My love affair with simplehuman began years ago with The Wall Mount Grocery Bag Holder which was perfect in my previous kitchen.  Where I live now,bagholder however, the wall mount is not an ideal setup.  Thus, when I noticed that simplehuman offers The Upright Bag Holder, I knew I had found my new solution.  It has a slim design that I describe as being about “two cereal boxes wide and a little bit longer”.  It fits easily in my kitchen cabinet (where I keep it) but it also looks totally great on a countertop like a stainless steel kitchen accessory anyone would have.  The base is sturdy and non-skid with rubber pads that also protect surfaces.  You put your plastic shopping bags in the top and pull them out through the wide front opening.  The official capacity is listed as 50 bags, but I’ve been known to jam more than that in.  The Upright Bag Holder is $16.99 and has a 10 year warranty.

It’s interesting to note that I am totally gung-ho about a product that stores “plastic shopping bags” and maybe you would be thinking that’s not so great for the environment.  Let me state that I am a huge proponent of reusable shopping bags and I own a bunch of them.  I use them constantly.  However, in my household, there is a real need for plastic bags and I think that reusing plastic shopping bags is a good way to minimize consumption.  We have diapers, a dog and….Well, without oversharing, you know that there are times you need a plastic bag!  Which brings me to the final product I’d like to share with you: The Profile Open Can.  I have space challenges in two bathrooms, and this product fits right where I need to put trash profile open can cans.  I prefer open top trash cans in my bathrooms, it’s so much easier to toss and go.  But, even more importantly, if you have awkward spaces, getting a foot maneuvered to open a step can is just silly.  Of course, I want to have a liner in my swell Profile Open Can, and what do I use?  Plastic shopping bags!  The can is stainless steel and has a 2.6 gallon capacity which is exactly right for your typical plastic grocery bag.  There is a removable inner bucket that has handles designed to hold a grocery bag in place.  Then, as if that weren’t perfect enough, there is a removable top frame that covers the inner bucket and hides any of the plastic bag, giving a totally clean look.  I really would love it if simplehuman offered this can in more colors and/or materials.  I think this is the only can any bathroom needs.  The Profile Open Can is $29.99 and comes with a 5 year warranty.

One question I always ask myself when I consider a purchase is: does this solve more than one problem for me?  If the answer is, “yes”, that is a big justification for me to open my wallet.  simplehuman products always solve more than one problem.  They even solve problems you didn’t even know you had until you start using them—their product line is that well conceived.  You can order their products directly from as well as at many retailers, visit the website to find a store near you.

Disclosure: simplehuman provided me with these three products for the purpose of this review.

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