Roast your foods with some adorable aquatic assistance. Help me make these hand crafted stainless steel narwhals a reality!
304
backers
$17,178
of $8,500
202% Funded
Ships February, 2014

Hello! I’m Melissa Dowell, an illustrator, screenprinter and general art mercenary. And these are my narwhal barbecue skewers.

What now?

Narwhal BBQ skewers. The handle is a cast stainless steel narwhal body and there's a twisted steel horn for the skewer. It's designed to be thrown on the barbecue for deep searing or held over the fire for small item roasting. It'll be hot to touch at first, but the high quality steel will cool down faster than your meat, so you can eat right off the horn.

The idea came about years ago, and no one else was willing to step up to the design challenge, so myself and industrial designer Matthew Borgatti (Anywhere Organ, Sleek & Destroy) sat down in the studio and set about creating the whimsical food lancers you see before you! Hammering out a design out of clay, pixels and eventually even 3D printing the models until we developed the most adorable narwhal skewer we could come up with.

The skewer shaft was machined locally in NYC, the handle 3D printed and joined together to become a perfect prototype. The hardest part is done already, but now, we need your help to be able to release these Narwhal Skewers into the wild for their very first production run!

Where are you getting these made?

Photo by Steve Prue of teamrockstarimages.comPhoto by Steve Prue of teamrockstarimages.com

I’m in talks with several factories at the moment and am narrowing down my selection based on the preference of finding one factory that can make all the pieces in one facility and then ship them to me already set up. This is my first venture into the world of manufacturing and I have to admit, it’s an interesting journey! From locating factories that do the sorts of casting and machining that I need done, to hammering out details such as the metals and finishings, and the quantities allowable within any given factory; this is a story I want to tell! Like with most things, the final decisions are really going to be based on how many pre-orders I receive. I plan on documenting and publishing every step of this journey in order to share the entire process with fellow novice manufacturers and anyone who is just plain interested in knowing how it's done.

What are my choices?

Narwhals don't come easy, so I based my prices on a short run basis, with some fun bonuses for those who just want to contribute and help me on my path, as well as for people who want more than a shiny skewer. Be sure, if you're outside the US, to include extra shipping. Additionally, for Shopstarter, these items are in a limited supply, so I wanted to price them to move quickly, instead of requiring them to be bundled.

 

$10 Hello Special

I'll send you a hand-signed postcard with a die-cut sticker front in either the vegetarian or carnivorous *or sweet tooth* narwhal design. I'll send you my gratitude, you can slap the narwhal on anything you'd like! (Gratitude may be harder to stick onto things)

$25 Dapper Special

available in men's & women's sizes, XS-XXL, children's S-XLnewly unlocked Sweet Tooth narwhal tee designavailable in men's & women's sizes, XS-XXL, children's S-XL

Offering just the vegetarian or carnivore narwhal BBQ t-shirt. Vegetarian option is a narwhal happily roasting a (rather displeased) mushroom, pepper & slice of eggplant. Carnivore narwhal is holding (also rather unhappy) meat cube, sausage and bacon slice over the fire. Sweet Tooth narwhal is roasting a marshmallow, chocolate and graham cracker s'more trio. Yum!

$30 Ride the Fish Special

11x1711x17" full colour poster by artist Yao Xiao

Well, actually, it's a mammal. NYC-based artist Yao Xiao created this poster inspired by the narwhal skewer project. You can own it in full colour and 11x17 inches large. Yao's work covers a wide variety of subjects--ranging from posters for underground parties, editorial illustrations for world travel magazines, and even to covers for adult novels. She has earned honored recognition from American Illustration, the Society of Illustrators and the National Society of Arts and Letters. Please check out her works at http://yaoxiaoart.com & on Facebook at http://facebook.com/yaoxiaoart.

Available in reward categories $125 and over!

$49 Narwhal Special

Prepare yourself for barbecue bad-assery because with this level you get your very own set of two stainless steel narwhal BBQ skewers! They'll be packaged in a specially designed and screenprinted box for the Kickstarter run. Be careful, they're sharp!

If you wish to order more than one set, please include the additional amount to your pledge & select this reward.

$35 Barbecue Special 

Medium-length apron in sweet-tooth, carnivorous or vegetarian narwhal screenprints
Medium-length apron in sweet-tooth, carnivorous or vegetarian narwhal screenprints

So now that you've got your narwhal skewers, it's time to update your roasting attire! Gives your choice of apron, hand screenprinted with the vegetarian, carnivorous or sweet tooth narwhal. Dapper indeed!

$125 Campfire Special

Photo by Kate Black, an example of her epic marshmallow-making skillsPhoto by Kate Black, an example of her epic marshmallow-making skills

The ultimate roasting package. You'll receive a set of two narwhal BBQ skewers, an apron with either vegetarian or carnivorous narwhal printed on it and a 16oz. mason jar of artisanal marshmallows, created by Kate Black. Please note that the marshmallows will not be vegan-friendly as they are made with gelatin. Limited to 10 sets.

$450 Treasure Chest Special

An example of one of Katelan Foisy's spirit boxes, not the exact item you will receiveAn example of one of Katelan Foisy's spirit boxes, not the exact item you will receive

Collaborate with artist Katelan Foisy to have your very own hand-painted custom wooden box for storing your narwhal skewers (or anything that is long and skinny and will fit inside). Katelan Foisy is a multi-disciplinary artist and tarotolgist known as La Gitana and the Mistress of Magic. Her work has appeared at the Grammy Awards, CitySlang Records, Out Magazine, the Society of Illustrators, Last Rites Gallery and in numerous other places. You can check out her work at http://katelanfoisy.com or visit her online store.

$500 Mer-whal Special

An example of Fred Harper's mermaids, not the exact image you will receiveAn example of Fred Harper's mermaids, not the exact image you will receive

Illustrator and comic book artist Fred Harper will render your likeness into a 10x14" watercolour portrait as a spiral-horned mer-whal - this is open to men and women! He is best known for his signature caricature work and you can definitely request that he take liberties with your physique (or lack thereof). Fred Harper's illustrations has appeared in prestigious publications “Time”, “The Wall Street Journal”,”The New York Times”, “Playboy”, “The Village Voice”, “Sports Illustrated”, and just about every issue of “The Week” magazine. He has also drawn the interiors of comics such as "Conan the Barbarian", "Spiderman" and "Doctor Strange". You can see more of his work available at http://www.fredharper.com/ 

 

Thank Yous

This project has been over a year and a half in the making. I would not have been able to do it without the help of my friends who helped literally make this happen: Madeleine Scott-Spencer and Numidas Prasarn, who provided much of my 3D design support from opposite ends of the earth, Keith Jenson (Brainwomb), my videographer and Eden Nova, photographer; and Foley, my incredibly [redacted] copy writer. An extra special thanks all of those who came out to join me on camera in the video!

Frequently Asked Questions

Does each item come with a set of BBQ skewers?

No, each item is priced as a standalone, to coincide with people interested in just buying the one item, unless otherwise noted. Many of them are in limited quantities and will go away after they're gone.

Are the t-shirts only available in adult sizes?

No! I am happy to do a run of kid's size t-shirts. Please specify. However, I am not doing baby or toddler sized shirts.

Ships February, 2014