The Smithsonian Is Raising $300K To Preserve Dorothy’s Ruby Slippers

Is there a more iconic visual from “The Wizard Of Oz” than Dorothy’s sparkling ruby slippers?

Well it turns out they’re starting to show their years and aren’t quite so eye-popping these days. In order to save the famed footwear worn by Judy Garland in the film, the Smithsonian Museum has started a Kickstarter campaign to raise $300,000 to repair the shoes and create a display case that will better preserve them for future generations.

The Smithsonian had the iconic slippers on display for years, but the decades have taken a toll—the colors are fading and the sequins are falling off.

As you can see here, the museum is already roaring towards the $300,000 Kickstarter goal. Seems like a lot to fix up some shoes, but those funds will go towards research to see how best to preserve them, and for a climate-controlled display case.

Real Simple notes that although the museum is federally funded, these types of restoration projects aren’t—which is why they’re turning to the public. (They used the same type of campaign to restore the Neil Armstrong Apollo 11 spacesuit.)

Don’t worry, Dorothy, your shoes will be back in clicking form in no time!

Photo by dbking

Shave Like A Time Traveler With This Futuristic Laser Razor

In case it wasn’t clear enough, the future is now. Skarp Technologies, with a modest fundraising goal of $160,000 for their neato Kickstarter project, has blown off the roof by raising over $2 million for their Skarp Laser Razor.

According to their Kickstarter page, Skarp Technologies claims to have “discovered a chromophore in the hair that would be cut when hit with a particular light wavelength.” (Read here for more on chromophores). Hence the laser in the razor. Awesome.

Skarp Technologies / Kickstarter

All I know is that now I absolutely need a laser razor more than I have ever needed anything. Next step, actual human testing in the Simplemost Laser Razor Testing Labs.

Hot Tub + Hammock = Win

We’re in the thick of summer, which means we’re likely to think of summer-y things, like barbecues, watermelon, the beach, hammocks, hot tubs… But what if you combined those last two? That’s right, a hot tub hammock! Benjamin Frederick’s Kickstarter campaign did just that and, on July 14th, reached its goal of $50,000 for the Hydro Hammock. (Not only its goal, but above its goal: $72,943.)

I don’t know about you, but I’d love one. It’s not only water-filled, but heated, too. (And requires less water than bathtubs!) You can fit your significant other in it with you and it can hold up to 50 gallons of water (and 20 gallons is suggested as the minimum). In total, it can support 700 pounds (but try that at your own risk). Here, you can see three people in one (which looks a little precarious and like a sitcom prank waiting to happen).


What does Hydro Hammock‘s inventor and CEO say?

“It is amazing to be floating in water and supported by a hammock nearly anywhere. I have tested it in over 30 locations and watched 25 friends try it for the first time, and love it. Really a heavenly experience… Sitting sideways gives great posture for meditation.” — Benjamin H. Frederick, Hydro Hammock Inventor and CEO

And what do users say?

“Pure camping bliss.” — CNET

“It’s a private paradise… and with room to share! How cool is that? There’s really nothing like this anywhere… and you can put it almost anywhere you want it. It’s removable so you can take it with you and can be put where pools can’t go. I’m in love, it’s where I hang on Sundays.” — Chef Tracy Fleming, Glaser Organic Farms

“Finally someone has combined my two favorite things, hammocking and hot tubs. This will be key to injury rehab and general wellness.” –Dr. Casey Frieder, DC., Southern Oregon Active Health

Now that its Kickstarter goal was reached, the Hydro Hammocks are available for purchase.

  1. Hydro Hammock 1 (more compact), $480
  2. Hydro Hammock 2 (you can add an insulation pad between the layers or make it into a water bed), $680 (can double as a water bed)
  3. Portable Heater System, $1950

(And if any of you happen to have a spare one laying (or hanging) around, let me know.)