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Build-your-own beehive and other ideas from 100Xbetter

September 21, 2012|By David A. Keeps
  • The 100XBetter stacked beehive, left, is made of Douglas fir blackened with a torch. The design duo of William Rollins, left, and Brendan Sowersby will be selling the hive for $250 and offering DIY plans as a free dowload on their site.
The 100XBetter stacked beehive, left, is made of Douglas fir blackened… (David A. Keeps )

William Rollins and Brendan Sowersby, founders of the L.A. design firm 100Xbetter, have launched a gallery show exploring the latest buzz in city farming: For "Under the Sun" at the Jai & Jai gallery in Chinatown, the design duo produced work inspired by honeybees, including their variation on the stacked box beehive.

"We burned the wood with a torch to sterilize it, but that isn't necessary," said Sowersby, who noted that the Douglas fir and other materials for hives can be purchased at any home improvement store. (The exception: wine corks in the side of the structure.) He said plans for the design will be made available as a free download on 100Xbetter's website. Built hives will also be sold for $250.

The Jai & Jai exhibition showcases other Sowersby and Rollins work from the last two years. "It includes more traditional furniture and lighting alongside pieces that further explore our interest in highly designed urban agriculture pieces," Sowersby said. "Everything is designed to be produced efficiently to support a resilient local community."

The centerpiece of the show is a conceptual display: jars of honey from beekeepers in various ZIP codes throughout Southern California.

For raw food fans, Rollins and Sowersby have produced an upgraded version of a solar-powered food dehydrator, the Slydrator, which doubles as a slide for small children.

Rollins and Sowersby are no strangers to L.A. at Home. Read about their Blob room divider and their modernist Chicken Tractor.

"Under the Sun" will be open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays, through Oct. 15. During the week, the gallery will be open by appointment: (818) 319-2957. Jai & Jai is at 648 N. Spring St., Los Angeles.

Corrected: An earlier version of this article implied that the show was opening Sept. 21. It opened Sept. 14.

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