#159 Over & Under

#159 Over & Under
#159 Over & Under
Click image to view full size or download poster for gallery-​quality printing & framing.
This is a high-​resolution pdf & may take a few minutes to download.Find printing tips & framing ideas here.

Do you prefer over? Or under? Over & under are both popular — but which is correct?

The cor­rect way to install toi­let paper is over, accord­ing to the patent draw­ing from 1891. (I like the lit­tle hands.)

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Toilet paper patent drawing
Patent draw­ing for toi­let paper or wrap­ping paper roll, 1891. Hope they grab the right roll to wrap my gift.

The history of toilet paper

This is an excerpt from a web­site devot­ed to the his­to­ry of toi­let paper (if you can believe that). Read the entire sto­ry at their web­site:

toi​let​pa​per​his​to​ry​.net

The first “offi­cial” toi­let paper was intro­duced in Chi­na in 1391, but the first men­tion of toi­let paper (paper for per­son­al hygiene) dates back to the year 589 AD in Korea. Between 875 & 1317 AD, paper was pro­duced in large sheets (2‑foot x 3‑foot sheets & even per­fumed) for Chi­nese emperor’s fam­i­ly hygiene.

In the Colo­nial Amer­i­ca, the com­mon means was corn­cobs.

Paper was a rare com­mod­i­ty until the 17th or 18th cen­turies. The first ref­er­ence to paper as toi­let paper was record­ed in 1718. After inven­tion of paper pages from news­pa­pers & mag­a­zines were also com­mon­ly used (news­pa­pers became wide­ly avail­able at 1700s.)

Joseph C. Gayet­ty invent­ed the first pack­aged toi­let paper in the Unit­ed States in 1857. “Gayetty’s Med­icat­ed Paper” was sold in pack­ages of flat sheets, med­icat­ed with aloe & water­marked with his name. Gayety’s toi­let paper was avail­able as late as the 1920’s.

In 1871, Seth Wheel­er (to some sources Zeth Wheel­er) of Albany became the offi­cial “inven­tor” of toi­let paper (on a roll). Seth Wheel­er patents rolled & per­fo­rat­ed wrap­ping paper.

Rolled & per­fo­rat­ed toi­let paper was invent­ed around 1880. In 1879, Thomas Sey­mour, Edward Irvin & Clarence Wood Scott found­ed the Scott Paper Com­pa­ny in Philadel­phia. Scott broth­ers came up with the idea of cus­tomiz­ing rolls for every merchant-​customer they had. They began sell­ing pack­ages of small rolls & stacked sheets. Scott Paper Com­pa­ny began pro­duc­ing toi­let paper under its own brand name in 1896. By 1925 Scott Com­pa­ny became the lead­ing toi­let paper com­pa­ny in the world.

This is just part of the sto­ry. It’s from a web­site ded­i­cat­ed sole­ly to the his­to­ry of toi­let paper! Read the full his­to­ry at toi​let​pa​per​his​to​ry​.net


Still no toilet paper!

I just came back from the super­mar­ket (first time out in two weeks — I’m play­ing it safe) and was amazed to find the shelves still bare of toi­let paper & paper tow­els & hand san­i­tiz­er (& no split peas for my favorite soup using the East­er ham­bone).

Stores still out but I’m stocked up

While every­one else is won­der­ing if they’ll have to resort to news­pa­per & corn cobs, I have a stock­pile of toi­let paper & paper tow­els in my bath­room cab­i­net. Like a mini Cost­co. No, I did­n’t horde the shelves when the pan­dem­ic start­ed. It has to do with spec­tac­u­lar design & two shock­ing dis­cov­er­ies (one bad, one good). Read on…

I’ve been a loy­al con­sumer of Cot­tonelle for a decade or two. I hate the word Charmin & their stu­pid com­mer­cials. I like the word Cot­tonelle. It sounds French or con­ti­nen­tal or some­thing classy. & I sim­ply like the stuff. But what do I like most? This:

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Toilet Paper as Fine Art
Sleek lin­ear design of my favorite toi­let paper, regard­less of whether it feels like cot­ton or a corn­cob. It’s just nice to look at (pri­or to use).

Straight & narrow

Look at that design! No embossed flow­ers, dots or wavy lines, just sleek straight lines that appeal to my lin­ear design taste. Much like Mid-​Century Mod­ern. (How­ev­er back then toi­let paper rolls even came in col­ors: pink & blue & green & yel­low. I liked those. Still pop­u­lar in Europe, but nowhere to be found in the US — except on Ama­zon, but what isn’t?

I like the feel of Cot­tonelle, but it’s the design that arous­es my sens­es. Plain, basic, lin­ear par­al­lel lines, nev­er devi­at­ing from the begin­ning of the roll to the end. Toi­let paper heav­en. The one con­stant in my life (besides get­ting these Amper­Art issues out once a month).


Toilet paper terror

One day, just last year, I pur­chased a pack of Cot­tonelle, & noticed the design had changed. No longer straight lines, they were now wavy. I don’t even have a sam­ple to show you because I will not have flow­ery toi­let paper in my bath­room.

So for sev­er­al months I resort­ed to the cheap­est toi­let paper, because it was the only type that was as plain as pos­si­ble, just flat with no design what­so­ev­er. (I imag­ine a corn cob is soft­er than that stuff.) Took near­ly a whole roll to do what a few sheets of the good stuff can do, but at least I did­n’t have to look at embossed flow­ers & squig­gles. (If there were amper­sands I might con­sid­er that.)

TP Motherload

Last Sep­tem­ber I was in a Wal­greens & noticed a spe­cial on Scott toi­let paper which was not only a good sale price, but reduced even more with my rewards card. $3.25 for a 12-​roll pack is a great price, so I went over to check it out, &

My design is back!

What I found was 12-​packs of toi­let paper that had the same exact design as my for­mer love, Cot­tonelle. But this was Scott. What gives? Who cares? I bought out the store.

Stocked up on TP
Yes, I got some stares wheel­ing all this toi­let paper out to my car.

Did I attract some stares? Yes, but only stares. Today I would be mugged & robbed, right?

There was a sur­prise wait­ing for me when I got home, though.

Things aren’t always as they appear

I did­n’t just stock up on toi­let paper as I had thought. I had unknow­ing­ly pur­chased rolls of paper tow­els, too, that matched the toi­let paper! Same lin­ear ribs. Thus the pack­ages looked iden­ti­cal.

I had cleaned out that one store, so I rushed to anoth­er Wal­greens & bought out their toi­let paper (dou­ble proof­read­ing the labels first). But I did­n’t return the tow­els because, even though they don’t com­pare to my usu­al Brawny or Boun­ty in per­for­mance, they match my toi­let paper.

One brand’s trash is another brand’s treasure

I was curi­ous how the Cot­tonelle pat­tern got on a com­peti­tor’s prod­uct, but I did have an idea. Sure enough, Cot­tonelle & Scott are owned by Kimberly-​Clark. So I assume Scott just start­ed using the dies dis­card­ed by Cot­tonelle. I find Scott to be a good enough toi­let paper — after all, it’s the looks that count — so that’s who I’m loy­al to now.


Best Toilet Paper Review

Here’s an excel­lent review on the top brands of toi­let paper (added to this post in August 2020, now that toi­let paper is a nor­mal com­mod­i­ty again, no longer worth more than gold). The review was writ­ten by Bryan Vu at yourbest​digs​.com. Click here for entire review which cov­ers cost, strength, absorben­cy, lint test, and oth­er details.

Best over­all: Cot­tonelle Ultra Com­fort­Care (used to be my favorite until they changed the design, as told above)

Most lux­u­ri­ous: Quilt­ed North­ern Ultra Plus

Most Eco-​friendly: Silk’n Soft

Best Toilet Paper Review

For you Costco shoppers, this is a fun bit of trivia:

Also from Bryan Vu’s arti­cle:
Kirk­land Sig­na­ture toi­let paper is Costco’s cash crop, the best sell­ing item in the mas­sive bulk-​warehouse store. It’s report­ed­ly well-​researched & stud­ied, scientifically-​engineered & designed to sell, sell, sell! Indeed, they sell more than a bil­lion rolls per year. This brand placed fifth in the review above, as best val­ue. [I bet there are peo­ple who pur­chase a Cost­co mem­ber­ship just for a seem­ing­ly end­less sup­ply of toi­let paper. —Chaz]

The 1973 Toilet Paper Panic

The clip shows how one inno­cent remark by John­ny Car­son on the Tonight Show set off a pan­ic across the Unit­ed States. There was no actu­al short­age of toi­let paper, but that’s not what Amer­i­cans believed. The shelves were emp­ty for four months, while toi­let paper was even being sold on the black mar­ket.

Enjoy ten min­utes of absurd fact, humor, & even nos­tal­gia — if you remem­ber White Front & Gem­co.


Helping hand

I will end this post with a hilar­i­ous pho­to of one of my favorite peo­ple, Robin Williams:



Concept & design notes

I’ve been hold­ing onto the title Over & Under for a few years, plan­ning on using it for a Thanks­giv­ing issue. You know, “Over & under & through the woods to Grand­moth­er’s house we go…” but always con­jured up an image of three bears and a fox. Mix­ing it up with some oth­er woodsy sto­ry, I guess.

All of a sud­den, with toi­let paper eclips­ing all oth­er news, an image of two rolls form­ing an amper­sand came to mind. Sim­ple enough, I thought. But it turned out to be an M.C. Esch­er type of con­cept: trapped in the realm of impos­si­bil­i­ty and illu­sion. The page of sketch­es proves my frus­tra­tion.

Vis­it mcesch​er​.com, the offi­cial web­site pub­lished by the M.C. Esch­er Foun­da­tion

I final­ly fig­ured some­thing out, and with a bit of per­spec­tive and depth was able to ren­der some­thing pos­si­ble. Maybe I should have kept it an opti­cal illus­tion and become famous like M.C.

The tile back­ground is rem­i­nis­cent of the tile-​walled bath­room in my child­hood (with a sep­a­rate tiled show­er), and in fact I was going to use that palette of turquoise and black. But the back­ground I found in a stock library is more appeal­ing to a wider range of peo­ple, all of whom are con­sumers of the new pre­cious ele­ment, TP.

As men­tioned ear­li­er, Over & Under was orig­i­nal­ly the title for a Thanks­giv­ing piece. There are sev­er­al oth­er phras­es that can be applied to more than one top­ic as well, such as emp­ty & full, stop & go, big & small, et al. So I’ve decid­ed to give myself per­mis­sion to repeat a phrase when­ev­er I get the whim and cre­ate a whole dif­fer­ent con­cept with it. (One of my first Amper­Art designs was #4 Lost & Found, which fea­tured a set of keys. But I’d also like to do one for lost & found pets, espe­cial­ly since a “lit­tle lion” has been com­ing around for food late­ly.)


Production notes for #159 Over & Under:
Original size: 20x30 inches

Programs: Adobe Illustrator (main image), Photoshop (background)
Font: Parisien

Credits:
Images: deposit​pho​tos​.com (modified)

Note: &” replaces “and” in most or all text, including quotations, headlines & titles.
You may repost the image & article. Please credit Amper​Art​.com.
To download a full-​size high-​resolution 11x17-​inch poster suitable for printing & framing, click on the image.

Visit DesimoneDesign.com
chaz sez
Want more?
Rants & raves mostly about design, sometimes about the universe.
An occasional bit of useful advice.
Read the blog:
des​i​monedesign​.com/​c​h​a​z​-​sez
Desimone Design
Desimone Design

#154 Wait & See

#154 Wait & See
#154 Wait & See
Click image to view full size or download poster for gallery-​quality printing & framing.
This is a high-​resolution pdf & may take a few minutes to download.
Find printing tips & framing ideas here.

When will this pandemic end?

We have to wait & see.

When will the vac­cine be ready? 
When will the masks & ven­ti­la­tors be deliv­ered?
How long will it take for peo­ple to real­ize this is seri­ous & stay home?
When will we be able to social­ize again? Go to work again? Play sports? See a movie? Go to a con­cert? Dance? Trav­el? Shop?
How many lives will be lost? Sad­ly, espe­cial­ly among the old, we’re los­ing gen­er­a­tions of sto­ries, recipes, & wis­dom.
How long will this be the new nor­mal?

We’ll wait & see.

Have you seen how clear the air is around the globe? Will it teach us some­thing, or will indus­try rush back to the old way of pro­duc­tion & pol­lu­tion?

It could change you know, but we’ll just have to wait & see.


 Please comment here.


chaz sez

Want more?
Rants & raves most­ly about design, some­times about the uni­verse.

An occa­sion­al bit of use­ful advice.
des​i​monedesign​.com/​c​h​a​z​-​sez

 


Production notes for #154 Wait & See:
Original size: 20x30 inches

Programs: Adobe Photoshop & Illustrator
Fonts: Baucher Gothic, Futura

Ampersand: Futura (modified)
Credits:
Background image: deposit​pho​tos​.com

Note: &” replaces “and” in most or all text, including quotations, headlines & titles.
You may repost the image & article. Please credit Amper​Art​.com.
To download a full-​size high-​resolution 11x17-​inch poster suitable for printing & framing, click on the image.

An excel­lent com­pa­ny, prod­uct or ser­vice needs brand­ing & graph­ic design that is prop­er, per­fect & pro­fes­sion­al.
Please vis­it Des­i­mone Design.

Desimone? Damn good!

#156 Spring Forward & Fall Back

#156 Spring Forward & Fall Back
#156 Spring Forward & Fall Back
Click image to view full size or download poster for gallery-​quality printing & framing.
This is a high-​resolution pdf & may take a few minutes to download.
Find printing tips & framing ideas here.

Spring forward & fall back…or stay put?

YOU CAN SIGN A PETITION FOR YEAR-​ROUND DAYLIGHT SAVING TIME

From change​.org:

On March 8th, the clock springs forward in most states. But not everywhere. That’s right, the majority of U.S. states are debating whether to opt-​out of Daylight Saving Time in their state. Dr. Daliah Wachs thinks it’s time for the entire country to do away with the hassle of changing the clocks. Daylight Saving Time is right around the corner, so now is the best time to make your voice heard.

If you wish to sign the petition, or read more about it, click this link.

My prob­lem with this peti­tion is its ambi­gu­i­ty. The con­clu­sion reads:

So why put the country through time changes twice a year?  Whether you’re #SickOfSpringForward or #FinishedWithFallBack, It’s time Congress puts an end to Daylight Saving Time changes and keep one time throughout the year!

I am not sure if they’re propos­ing to keep day­light sav­ing year-​round once we move our clocks for­ward for the last time, or switch to stan­dard time for­ev­er. Or does it sug­gest nei­ther — just don’t keep chang­ing the time twice a year? What do you think?

Per­son­al­ly, I like changing the clocks twice a year. It’s kin­da fun, shakes things up. Most of all, sud­den­ly adding one hour of sun­light to each day is like a glo­ri­ous cel­e­bra­tion of sun­shine, longer days, and the unof­fi­cial begin­ning of sum­mer (read next sec­tion, “It’s Sum­mer!,” below). On the oth­er hand, when stan­dard time arrives it is a depress­ing shock to expe­ri­ence dark­ness so ear­ly. If we were to stop this back-&-forth busi­ness I pre­fer year-​round day­light sav­ing.

How­ev­er, to be con­sid­er­ate to oth­ers, there are health issues  involved not only each time the clocks change (actu­al­ly lead­ing to a high­er imme­di­ate risk of heart attacks & strokes), but also con­cern­ing a detri­men­tal time shift with DST which is an hour off from our nat­ur­al inter­nal clocks. That is explained in this infor­ma­tive arti­cle atThe Wall Street Jour­nal.

I remem­ber Cal­i­for­nia exper­i­ment­ed with year-​round DST back in the 1970s or 80s. It last­ed only one year, because par­ents com­plained that kids were walk­ing to school in the dark. (My solu­tion would have been to start school an hour lat­er.) Reminds me of when Venice Beach was nude for only a year, before the prudes com­plained. Why do peo­ple who have no busi­ness even going to the beach (because it’s a place to relax where you should­n’t tell oth­ers how to enjoy their sun­shine) ruin it for oth­ers? As my all-​time favorite bumper stick­er reads:

IF WE WERE MEANT TO GO NAKED WE WOULD HAVE BEEN BORN THAT WAY

But that’s anoth­er top­ic for anoth­er time.


It’s summer!

Well, it’s actu­al­ly still win­ter — spring does­n’t even start until March 19, and sum­mer offi­cial­ly does­n’t start till June. But for die-​hard sun wor­shipers (like me), the unof­fi­cial begin­ning of sum­mer is the first day of Day­light sav­ing Time. Start­ing Sun­day March 8 we’ll have long sun­ny days to soak up the rays.

Sun!

I have been look­ing for­ward to this week­end for months (ever since we stum­bled back to stan­dard time last Novem­ber). I like to cel­e­brate the first day of DST on the beach or at Glen Eden Sun Club (a family-​friendly nud­ist resort) in Coro­na, Cal­i­for­nia. But I promised myself & a client I would fin­ish his web­site before I have fun in the sun. The web­site is still in devel­op­ment, so I’m work­ing through the week­end. But that’s okay — this is a won­der­ful client who deserves all the cre­ative bells & whis­tles I can inject into his web­site. (Lit­er­al­ly bells & whis­tles, and drums & all sorts of oth­er sounds. Chuck Jon­key is a multi-​talented musi­cian who trav­els the world record­ing indige­nous music & lay­ing down his own tracks with unique custom-​made instru­ments. I’ll issue an Amper­Art post fea­tur­ing his tal­ent, com­plete with music sam­ples, once the web­site is launched.)

Besides, the weath­er out­look for this week­end is in the low 60s. Too cold for this Cal­i­for­nia kid. I want to soak up rays, not be stabbed with ici­cles.

So I’m look­ing for­ward to the next unof­fi­cial begin­ning of sum­mer, Memo­r­i­al Day week­end. The web­site will be fin­ished & I will be bask­ing in hot sun­shine.


How do you tell the cows you’re going to be an hour late?

Excerpt from That’s Farming:

The con­cept of day­light sav­ing time (DST) has its roots in the nine­teenth cen­tu­ry, when it was sug­gest­ed by a New Zealan­der, George Hud­son, but it was first adopt­ed in 1916 by Ger­many & Austria-​Hungary. Since then most Euro­pean & Amer­i­can coun­tries have at one time or anoth­er adopt­ed DST but in recent years it has been dis­card­ed by most of South Amer­i­ca & a few US states.Poster announcing Daylight Saving Bill

The idea of DST was to max­imise day­light hours for those work­ing dur­ing the day. It has its roots in indus­try, not agri­cul­ture, as some have sug­gest­ed. It was brought in so that work­ers could engage in activ­i­ties after work dur­ing the sum­mer months. Going to work an hour ear­li­er left an extra hour in the evenings. This suits retail­ers & those inter­est­ed in sports & to be fair it serves its pur­pose when the long sum­mer evenings seem to stretch to obliv­ion.

Some peo­ple prob­a­bly enjoyed the extra morn­ing’s hour in bed, but how do you tell cows you’re going to be an hour late?

Read the full arti­cle about Day­light sav­ing Time at thats​farm​ing​.com. It’s very inter­est­ing.


Saving or savings?

The cor­rect term is day­light “sav­ing” time, accord­ing to the Asso­ci­at­ed Press style­book. The incor­rect term “day­light sav­ings time” is com­mon­ly used, how­ev­er,  espe­cial­ly in Aus­tralia, Cana­da and the Unit­ed States. It’s also sup­posed to be low­er­case, not upper­case, accord­ing to the Asso­ci­at­ed Press.

I’ve used the cor­rect spelling in this post, but cap­i­tal­ized it here & there because I think Day­light Sav­ing Time is that spe­cial!


Concept & design

My first idea for the time shift was a split back­ground of sum­mer & win­ter scenes, one sea­son visu­al­ly shift­ed ahead of the oth­er. Then I came across the stock image of two stacked clocks. Clean, sim­ple, mod­ern. I mod­i­fied a few details & of course added the amper­sand tails. (Note the gap in that cir­cu­lar ele­ment is equiv­a­lent to the wedge between hours 2 & 3.) I also changed the numer­als from a quirky font to styl­ish Hel­veti­ca. 

Maybe next year I’ll adapt my orig­i­nal con­cept of sea­son­al pho­to­graph shifts — unless we have done away with time change alto­geth­er.


Power volt forward?

Not only does the dou­ble enten­dre “spring” help us remem­ber which direc­tion to rotate the hour hand every March, but it coin­ci­den­tal­ly refers to a main com­po­nent of mechan­i­cal clocks & watch­es. Should we not then, in mod­ern times, say “pow­er volt for­ward” and “dig­i­tize for­ward”?

Or for that mat­ter, we could just as clev­er­ly say “March for­ward.” But then “Novem­ber back” is kin­da awk­ward.

How­ev­er you say it, enjoy the extra hour of sun­shine.

Shining an hour later for us!


 Please comment here.


chaz sez

Want more?
Rants & raves most­ly about design, some­times about the uni­verse.

An occa­sion­al bit of use­ful advice.
des​i​monedesign​.com/​c​h​a​z​-​sez

 


Production notes for #156 Spring Forward & Fall Back:
Original size: 20x30 inches

Program: Adobe Illustrator
Font: Helvetica

Ampersand: Illustration
Credits:
Artwork images: deposit​pho​tos​.com
Victory poster: United Cigar Stores Company (artist unknown); Library of Congress (public domain)
Note: &” replaces “and” in most or all text, including quotations, headlines & titles.
You may repost the image & article. Please credit Amper​Art​.com.
To download a full-​size high-​resolution 11x17-​inch poster, click on the image.

An excel­lent com­pa­ny, prod­uct or ser­vice needs brand­ing & graph­ic design that is prop­er, per­fect & pro­fes­sion­al.
Please vis­it Des­i­mone Design.

Desimone? Damn good!