Interactive toy maker Sphero has challenged University of Kansas design and engineering students to create its next generation of products — robots that can be  companions and have emotional value to a person. On this edition of Up To Date we talk about the potential social significance of robotics and what the future looks like in the field. 


With the advertising and design community immersed in Kansas City Design Week, we examine how local companies get people to identify with their products and their stories. Let's pull back the curtain on some popular KC brands: Shatto Milk, Sporting KC and SPIN! Pizza.


Color has a wide-ranging impact on our day-to-day lives, but we don't always pay attention to it. It emotes memory and can determine an era-- just think of the 1960s.

On this edition of Up to Date Steve Kraske talks with Leatrice Eiseman about Pantone on Fashion: A Century of Color in Design. They discuss the psychological aspects of different hues, how the eye views color, and Pantone's Color of the Year. 


Kansas City Museum

The Kansas City Art Institute doesn’t offer degrees in fashion design, but students in the fiber department spend plenty of time thinking about clothing, costumes, performance and the human body as a means of expression, says Pauline Verbeek-Cowart, the chair of the department.

So when she got a call from Kansas City Museum Executive Director Anna Marie Tutera about co-curating a show called Rituals and Celebrations: Exploring Meaning Through Dress, she was up for it.

Tim Alamenciak

You may remember when Kansas City was the fashion center of the Midwest—in the 1930's buildings in the Garment District employed thousands of people and made clothing worn all over the country. It may have been 80 years since we had that stature in the world, but one annual event may slowly, but surely be putting our town back on the fashion map. KC Fashion Week starts Thursday, October 3rd and has events through Sunday, October 6th.

Lance Rake

When you think of getting a bicycle, finding one made of bamboo isn't usually your first thought.

In the second part of Wednesday's Up to Date, we talk with University of Kansas design professor Lance Rake about how he took an underused Alabama crop and turned it into an economic stimulus for the town of Greensboro, Ala.


The Psychology Of Branding

Aug 6, 2013
Adam Barhan / Flickr

Logos and brands are all around us, and we probably recognize more of them than we think. But what goes into creating those familiar symbols? And how do they work to make us buy the products they represent? Today on Central Standard, we'll talk label design.

Julie Denesha / KCUR

The 13th Annual West 18th Street Fashion Show started at dusk on June 8, and drew a crowd of onlookers both on the street and from the windows above.

Camera phones flashed as models, wearing the creations of eighteen designers, pranced on a lighted runway in the canyon between buildings lining 18th Street. Behind-the-scenes, designers made last-minute adjustments and models primped as they prepared to mount the runway. 

Goodbye Green Hand, Hello Snot Cat

Aug 2, 2012
Andrea Silenzi / KCUR

One of the most special spots in Kansas City is getting a new look. Sprawled atop the storefront at 124 West 18th Street is a snotty, smoking feline texting on its cell.

MAD Art Toy Designer

Mar 1, 2012
Jeremy "Mad" Madl

In the second half of this Thursday's Central Standard, get to know an illustrator and toy designer who’s built an international brand around his name: Jeremy “MAD” Madl.

On Wednesday the Nelson Atkins Museum of Art announced results of a design contest for a temporary pavilion to coincide with the museum’s exhibition Inventing the Modern World: Decorative Arts at the World’s Fairs 1851–1939, opening in mid-April.

The essence of a supernova. Galaxies, goddesses, and art nouveau. The light and pressure of the Big Bang. These are just a few of the inspirations from the 18 collections, by established and emerging designers, that will be featured in the 9th annual West 18th Street Fashion show. This year's theme: Summer in Space.

Kansas City, MO – West 18th Street Fashion Show
Summer in Space
Saturday, June 6, 8:00pm
Crossroads Arts District
West 18th Street, between Wyandotte and Baltimore