RISD (pronouced "riz-dee" or Rhode Island School of Design) has been around for 125 years refining artists and designers, stretching their imaginations, launching them into the world with the ability to create. Many RISD grads have produced products that we all benefit from and enjoy today. You can purchase items online from RISD at risd|works, which features an annual collection of works by RISD alumni and faculty. Each item features a bio of the artist, which I really like, and when they attended RISD. They offer a variety of items from contemporary to folk, at affordable prices. The fun blocks above, "Blockheads", are from RISD grad Jason Amendolara, $17 for the set. If you're in the Providence area, you can also visit their storefront, open only on Sundays from 11-5 p.m.

To me, owning something purchased directly from it's maker, so to speak, gives the item a feeling of being sacred. I cherish it for years to come. risd|works is perfect for those of us that don't want everything we own to be stamped, "Made in China". Here's an aluminum kitchen timer that I like for only $15 from Jozeph Forakis, Industrial Designer.

The "Meep" pendant light with a die-cut birch veneer is as unique as it is beautiful for $260 by James Dieter, Industrial designer.
For $40, you can enjoy a beautiful glazed stoneware bowl from artist/designer Dwo Wen Chen.
(Photos: All photos are various product shots of items mentioned above. All photos from risd|works.)