Wrap Yourself in Classic Mac Dingbats

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In the early 1980s, Susan Kare drew inspiration from hieroglyphics and hand-drew her own 20th-century set on the bitmap grid—creating the very first dingbats, those proto-mojis of yore.

Apple’s Cairo font featuring the work was released in 1984 on macOS, and some of the symbols vastly outlived their original ecosystem, including the ubiquitous cursor and watch. (The influence of Kare’s icon work cannot be understated; originally a sculptor, she also crafted the Command symbol, the infamous “Clarus the Dogcow,” the paintbrush, and on and on.)

As AIGA notes in its 2018 Medalist bio of her:

Since Kare had scant experience designing in the digital realm, she drew from her experience with mosaics, needlepoint and pointillism. After procuring “the smallest graph paper” she could find in an art supply store, Kare drew out a 32-by-32 grid. Each of the 1,024 squares represented a pixel, mimicking the bit-mapped display of the early Apple interface.

Now, thanks to Areaware, you can wrap yourself in Kare’s vintage Apple awesomeness. (And in an even deeper throwback, she created the Cairo throw for the Jacquard loom, “an early example of computer-controlled machinery, operated with punched cards and invented by Joseph Jacquard in 1801.”)

Made from 100% organic cotton and clocking in at 50" x 70", should someone in your life ask what you want for the holidays, here’s a handy link.