HBL Analysis: Restrained Luxury Package Design

Friday 31 December 2010

Gourmet food has traditionally been presented in decadent or excessive packaging in order to convey its quality. However such extravagance is not always necessary, and we've highlighted minimalist style graphics and packaging that serve as a counter point to the decadence that many associate with luxury.

Inhouse design studio describes this method as "letting the packaging 'speak' to the customer". They used this technique on a series of containers for London roastery, bar and restaurant Caravan, which placed emphasis on type by using words from the Romany language.

For HBL subscribers, see the full report here.

HBL Student and Graduate: Rukmale by Maham Anjum

Wednesday 29 December 2010

Earlier this month WGSN-homebuildlife spotted the work of glass and ceramics student Maham Anjum at the Royal College of Art's work in progress show in London. Maham's work aims to investigate and understand the present attitudes towards the artisan craft potteries in the Indian subcontinent, some of which are in decline. By developing existing ceramic processes, improving the materials and decorating processes, Maham’s work aims to sensitively redesign the products to create new market opportunities. Maham has researched traditional craft techniques in Ethiopia and Southeast Asia, as well as Sri Lanka where she has produced the Rukmale range of serveware for the Jamie Oliver Collection. The collection, shown above, is made by a group of women potters, providing them with the opportunity to evolve their ancient potting skills while helping sustain the local community.

Subscribers can see WGSN-homebuildlife's full report on the RCA Student Work in Progress Show online here.

HBL Contract: Haguruma Envelope Co Ltd, Japan

Tuesday 28 December 2010

The office and showroom of Japanese stationery company Haguruma Envelope Co Ltd is featured this month on WGSN-homebuildlife's report on inspirational office interiors. Haguruma are specialist manufacturers of premium stationery made from materials such as cotton paper, washi paper and rice paper. The interior designers, Design Room 702, worked with the concept of creating a 'paper museum' to reflect the company's strong product value. In the entrance lobby, shown above, a striking focus wall is clad from floor to ceiling with envelopes in a selection of the company’s original colour palette.

WGSN-homebuidlife subscribers can see the full report here.

HBL Contract: The Savoy, London

Tuesday 21 December 2010

The Beaufort Bar at the Savoy, London

For the first in a series of reports focussing on interiors analysis for the contract sector, WGSN-homebuildlife visited The Savoy, recently reopened following a three-year refurbishment project which cost over £100 million. Interior designer Pierre-Yves Rochon was charged with revitalising the classic London hotel, built in 1889; an undertaking described as "the most ambitious hotel restoration in British history". Subscribers can see the full report here.

HBL Analysis: Berlin's Christmas markets

Monday 20 December 2010

Berlin's world-famous Christmas markets provide inspiration for WGSN-homebuildlife subscribers this week. Amongst the traditional German themes on offer, including handcrafted wooden toys and delicate metal trinkets, an array of colourful bird decorations also feature: from bright yellow chaffinches and glittered robins to distinctly untraditional hot pink flamingoes. Click here to read the full report.

HBL News: Front around the clock

Thursday 16 December 2010

Swedish designers Front have designed a clock for Italian brand Porro on which the hours are cast by shadows. Each of the twelve numbers is fixed perpendicularly to the face, and can be read straight-on if lit from the right.

HBL Events: Design Miami/ 2010

Wednesday 15 December 2010

This year, Design Miami relocated and set up the tents on the parking lot opposite the Convention Center which houses the main Art Basel show. The show, which used to be in the Design District, was smaller than usual with only 15 exhibitors.

HBL Retail: The story of a mug by Byggstudio

Tuesday 14 December 2010

Everyday Life Books, the publishing arm of design and lifestyle magazine Apartamento, have teamed up with Italian design brand Iittala to launch Historien om en mugg (The story of a mug), a book by Byggstudio which charts the history of the everyday domestic mug.

HBL Retail: Present and Correct Christmas pop up shop

Monday 13 December 2010

London stationers Present and Correct have opened a Christmas pop up shop in Clerkenwell, London that is styled to look like a vintage classroom. Since 2003, Present and Correct have sold a carefully curated collection of notebooks, pens, calendars and general office accoutrements through their online shop. Their keen eye for detail and their meticulous presentation skills have earnt them an army of stationery-obsessed fans. The pop up shop will sell a special selection of their products and is open until 21st December. Monday - Saturday 12-6.30pm, and open until 9pm on Thursdays: Present and Correct Pop Up, 5 Back Hill, London EC1R

HBL Vintage: Circo delle Pulci, Milan

Friday 10 December 2010

Photo by Daniele Fragale
WGSN-homebuildlife's Milan correspondent Farah Pallaro has sent us images of a new Milanese vintage fair, described as a mix between a flea market, a bazaar and a circus. Held in a different venue each weekend, the Circo della Pulci features art, music, fashion, clowns, dancers and even a Tarot reader.

HBL Colour: Pantone announces 2011 Colour of the Year

Thursday 9 December 2010

Global colour authority Pantone has announced that Honeysuckle will be its Colour of the Year for 2011. Following on from 2010's titleholder Turquoise, Honeysuckle's vibrant reddish pink tone is intended to energise, invigorate and prepare us for everyday trials.

HBL Analysis: Sandwiches - new material combinations

Tuesday 7 December 2010

Garden Furniture by Kevin Hunt
Materials expert Chris Lefteri has turned his attention to the most innovative new composite materials in his latest report for WGSN-homebuildlife, including this living garden furniture.

HBL Events: Christmas traditions at the Geffrye Museum

Monday 6 December 2010

Christmas decorations in the 1870 room
WGSN-homebuildlife this week paid a visit to the annual Christmas exhibition at London's Geffrye Museum, which tracks Britain's changing interior tastes from the 17th century to the 1990s via a succession of room sets, each one fitted out in the seasonal decor of its time.

HBL News: Architectural Review's Emerging Architecture Award Winners announced

Friday 3 December 2010

The Waterhouse at South Bund by NHDRO. Photo by Pedro Pegenaute
The Waterhouse at South Bund, a former Japanese army headquarters turned into a hotel by Shanghai-based designers Neri and Hu Design and Research Office (NHDRO), is one of the three first prize winners of this year's Emerging Architecture Awards, organised by Architectural Review.

HBL Events: Siren Elise Wilhelmsen at Normann Copenhagen

Wednesday 1 December 2010

In August earlier this year, Norwegian designer Siren Elise Wilhelmsen won the Time to Design Award award with her project, Developing Time – Time Developing, which is both a clock and a knitting machine. Siren is currently exhibiting a whole family of knitting clocks at the Normann Copenhagen store in Denmark. The clocks have been created at the Danish Art Workshops and will be on show for two weeks. See more images below the jump.

HBL Events: Brancusi's Rare Functional Objects

Tuesday 30 November 2010

Saucepan, estimated to sell for 1500-2000 euros
A selection of works by renowned Romanian sculptor Constantin Brancusi will be auctioned today by Artcurial in Paris - including a collection of objects made by the artist for his own domestic use.

HBL Kids Lifestyle: Carton Furniture Series by Riki Watanabe

Japanese industrial designer Riki Watanabe originally designed this set of children's furniture in 1965, and it's now being manufactured by Metropolitan Gallery Inc. Tokyo in a range of bright colours, just in time for Watanabe's 100th birthday next year. Each piece is made solely of folded cardboard and the set can be neatly packed away when not in use.

HBL Analysis: Diamante by Jacob Jensen

Monday 29 November 2010

Danish design brand Jacob Jensen has produced a collection for Tommerup Kister, one of Denmark's biggest funeral directors. Inspired by gem-cutting, the range is made up of three coffins and an urn.

HBL Retail News: Artek opens in Stockholm

Friday 26 November 2010

Finnish design brand Artek have opened their first Stockholm branch. Located in the Southern region of the city, the store has been designed by Harri Koskinen, a well-known Finnish designer, and will carry a range of concession lines alongside its in-house collections - including its own 2nd Cycle range of vintage Artek products.

HBL Events: Collacqueration: Designed in the UK - Lacquered in Japan

Thursday 25 November 2010

Lacquered Mugs by Max Lamb and Akira Sugimura. Photo by Daniel Katz
The exhibition Collacqueration: Designed in the UK - Lacquered in Japan aims to highlight the ancient Japanese tradition of lacquering by bringing together the imagination of young UK based designers and the traditional skills of the lacquer craftsmen of Wajima.

HBL Events: Comfort by Konstantin Grcic at Saint-Étienne Biennale

Wednesday 24 November 2010

German industrial designer Konstantin Grcic has curated an exhibition for the 2010 Saint-Étienne Biennale which attempts to deconstruct the idea of comfort, celebrating common items which have enhanced our lives.

HBL Retail News: The Temporium pops up for ten days

Tuesday 23 November 2010

New retail space The Temporium will launch in Brompton Design District, London, on 9th December. The pop-up shop will host a range of homewares and accessories by established and emerging design brands, including Faye Toogood's customised binocular cases, above.

Food and Design: a report by Dezeen for Scholtès

Monday 22 November 2010

Image: Dezeen

Online design magazine Dezeen today published a report on the subject of food design, covering aspects including the use of food as material by the new generation of product designers.

WGSN-homebuildlife subscribers can also read materials expert Chris Lefteri's recent report on the subject here.

HBL Retail: Crown Paints Colour Influences 2011

Thursday 18 November 2010

Last week, Crown Paints announced their colour influences for 2011. The palettes are decided by a diverse team of industry experts, invited by Crown to identify the key colour influences for the coming year. Amongst the nine panel members were head of fashion and textiles at the RCA Wendy Dagworthy, furniture designer Tom Price and architect Miles Falkingham. The team identified seven key influences, which will inform the development of the Crown Paints portfolio. See below for details.

HBL News: Whatswhat Collective win Muuto Talent Award 2010

Wednesday 17 November 2010

 Scandinavian design brand Muuto have announced the winner of this year's Muuto Talent Award: an adjustable floor lamp called Pull, created by Konstfack-based design trio Whatswhat Collective.

HBL Events: Jaime Hayon X Kamide Choemon-gama

Tuesday 16 November 2010

In the first in a series WGSN takes a closer look at some of our favourite designers seen at Design Tide Tokyo and Tokyo design week this year.

HBL Contract: Opus Lignea by Parchettificio Toscano

Monday 15 November 2010

High-end Italian flooring brand Parchettificio Toscano has launched a new line of parquet flooring which is custom-made according to the customer's preference.

HBL Designer Profile: Juliette Warmenhoven

Thursday 11 November 2010

Juliette Warmenhoven is a recent graduate from the ArtEZ Institute of the Arts in Arnhem who exhibited her 'Everyday Growing project' last month at Dutch Design Week in Eindhoven. Her project consists of a series of handmade, lo-tech botanical experiments that study the growth and beauty of plant life.

HBL Designer Profile: Dieter Volkers

Wednesday 10 November 2010

The work of young Dutch designer Dieter Volkers caught WGSN's eye at Dutch Design Week this year. Recently graduated from the ArtEZ Institute of the Arts in Arnhem, Dieter presented his work at the exhibition Instruments, Tools and Objects along with fellow students Juliette Warmenhoven and Klaas Kuiken. He describes his designs as "Functional objects, powerful in their aesthetics".

HBL Contract: Iota by Sebastian Bergne for izé

Tuesday 9 November 2010

Sebastian Bergne is the latest in a long line of prestigious designers to collaborate with architectural hardware manufacturer izé. Today, Bergne and izé will launch the Iota handle to coincide with the launch of izé’s new website. The design features an integrated handle and stem lending it a lightweight apparance. izé’s recent collaborations include Studio Toogood, who worked with the manufacturer earlier this year to produce a series of handles cast from a collection of found objects called Sticks, Stones and Broken Bones.

HBL Retail: Hikari no Tokei by tha ltd.

Monday 8 November 2010

While out and about in Tokyo, WGSN-homebuildlife's Liza Mackenzie spotted 'Hikari no Tokei', a new clock installation located at the entrance of the Seibu department store in Ikebukuro. Designed by tha ltd., the installation occupies all four sides of a giant pillar, with LED surfaces displaying a constant stream of the time. tha ltd. is a Tokyo based design studio who focus on website design and software development, as well as experimentations in motion-based projects and interior installations. tha ltd. were the brains behind the internationally renowned image bookmarking website FFFFOUND!, now a popular web service for designers and artists from all over the world. See their website for more inspiring digital design work.

HBL Designer Profile: Tomas Kral

Friday 5 November 2010

Plug! series by Tomas Kral
Young Slovakian designer Tomas Kral has designed a range of furniture and interior objects called Plug!, all of which focus on cork - one of the materials of the moment. Kral aimed to "transform the image of a simple cork bottle stopper", and each piece in the collection has a straight-forward, modern feel. WGSN-homebuildlife particularly likes the side table and fruit bowl, both of which act as a pedestal for their contents.

HBL Retail: Throwing Shapes with Kvadrat

Thursday 4 November 2010

Danish textiles brand Kvadrat have released an innovative film tribute made for them by British photographer Matthew Donaldson, which has been shown exclusively on the fashion, art and culture blog Nowness. Entitled 'Throwing Shapes With Kvadrat', the film successfully breaks away from traditional textile advertising, where fabrics are shown on rolls or on furniture in situ. Instead the film shows a slow motion, aerial ballet of upholstered shapes dancing across the screen. The film is an extension of a still campaign that Donaldson created in collaboration with designers Graphic Thought Facility for the company earlier this year. This initial cut is to be followed by an alternate version, which will be screened in the Kvadrat showrooms. To read about the making of the film at Pinewood studios in the UK visit eye magazine.

HBL Events: Zaagkoffer by Maurice Meewisse at Dutch Design Week

Wednesday 3 November 2010

During Dutch Design Week Maurice Meewisse presented Zaagkoffer; a shell-like case for a chainsaw made out of woodchips. To make the case, Maurice used the woodchips that he created when using the saw. He dried them and mixed them with a homemade, biodegradable adhesive based on gelantine and glycerin. This mix of woodchips and adhesive results in a lightweight, waterproof particle board with greater durability and flexibility. It can be made into sheet material as well as a clay-like moulding material, both fully recyclable and biodegradable. The design was nominated for the Doen Materiaalprijs and was showcased along with the winners and other nominated designs last week at the Klokgebouw in Eindhoven.

HBL Tradeshows: Patina Patchwork at High Point Market

Tuesday 2 November 2010

Dovetail Furniture
HBL US Editor Jean Lin took a trip down to High Point, North Carolina for this season's High Point Market. The market is where America goes for the country's richest blend of American traditional and contemporary design for the home. The American aesthetic has traditionally revolved around vintage and antiques, whether it be authentic, re-productions or inspired. This season was no different with "Patina Patchwork" emerging as an important trend at the fair.

HBL Events: We Make Carpets at Dutch Design Week 2010

Monday 1 November 2010

Plastic fork carpet at Dutch Design Week 2010

We Make Carpets is a project that was started by designers Stijn van der Vleuten, Marcia Nolte and visual artist Bob Waardenburg at Dutch Design Week 2009, when they made their first carpet installation . A year on, and the collective have been building a portfolio of visually stunning carpet designs made from a variety of weird and wonderful materials that range from pasta, to coffee, to different types of medical tape. Last week, WGSN went to see their new designs on show at Dutch Design Week. See below the jump for more images or visit thier website for more information.

HBL Events: The Crate Series by Studio Makkink & Bey

Wednesday 27 October 2010

Dutch design duo Studio Makkink & Bey have created a series of furniture using discarded packing crates as their starting point. Confirming WGSN's S/S 2011 macrotrend Fair & Square, which advocates pared-down design and an honest use of materials, the collection includes five varieties of crate-based product - BathCrate, VanityCrate, BedCrate, VacuumCleanerCrate and ClockCrate - and will be on show at Spring Projects, London, from next week.

HBL Events: Mini Scooter E at
Paris Motor Show

Tuesday 26 October 2010

Last week WGSN contributor Lisa White reported from The Paris Motor Show, where she commented on the wide selection of electric cars on show. However, while electric cars are going mainstream, two avant-garde economy carmakers, Mini and Smart, also exhibited new electric scooter concepts. The Mini Scooter E, shown above,was described as ' A new electric vision of the future'.

HBL Events: BCXSY at Established and Sons

Monday 25 October 2010

 During the Frieze Art Fair in London this month, British manufacturers Established and Sons presented ‘Origin Part 1: Join’; a series of Japanese Hinoki screens designed by Eindhoven based designers BCXSY. The three elegant screens in the Join series are available in a limited edition of 8 pieces. Each screen is made by a skilled craftsman named Mr Tanaka, a master of Japanese Tategu wood joinery. The screens are made from Hinoki Japanese Cypress, which is the most luxurious type of wood used in the craft of Tategu.

You can also read our interview with Boaz Cohen, one half of BCXSY, here.

HBL Retail: Jonas Wagell

Thursday 21 October 2010

Lollipop lamp by Jonas Wagnell for Normann Copenhagen

Earlier this month we featured a designer profile of Jonas Wagell's design studio Hello Industry. The up and coming Swedish designer has also been busy working on a number of collaborations with other manufacturers and has several product launches in the pipeline. Here is a sneak preview of his Lollipop lamp for Normann Copenhagen and the childishly robust Pomperipossa tea set he is working on for Muuto, both will launch in Spring 2011. Those passing through Stockholm may also want to pay a visit to the new David Design store, designed by Wagnell and scheduled to open this Autumn.

HBL City by City: Tobias Rehberger at Setouchi Art Festival, Japan

Wednesday 20 October 2010

Photo by antjeverena

German artist Tobias Rehberger has renovated a vacant house on the island of Teshima in Japan to create a restaurant which was opened at the Setouchi Art Festival. In contrast to it's humble facade, the restaurant's interior features striking walls, floors and tables covered in camoflauge patterns from World War I battleships. The restaurant is called  Called “Was du liebst, bring ich auch zum weinen" (What You Love also Makes You Cry).

HBL Events: Gareth Neal at Super Design

Tuesday 19 October 2010

Last week WGSN paid a visit to the fourth annual Super Design exhibition, which brings together contemporary 'design-art'  from leading international galleries. The exhibition, set in the basement of Victoria House,  took place during the Frieze Art Fair in London and included unique and limited edition pieces from the Apartment, D&A-Lab, Mitterrand-Cramer, Tom Dixon, Gallerie Van Der Straeten, Quadridge, and Vessel Gallery. WGSN's stand out favourite was the beautifully crafted Urban picnic collection by Gareth Neal for Vauxhall Collective. The pieces feature intricate marquetry veneers that demonstrate a modern take on a traditional craft.

HBL Vintage: Brooklyn Flea

Monday 18 October 2010

WGSN-homebuildlife's US editor, Jean Lin, paid a visit to popular weekly market Brooklyn Flea recently to gauge the most exciting current trends in vintage furniture, accessories and tableware.

HBL Creative Direction: Xujing by Roland Geissel at Art Labor Gallery, Shanghai

Friday 15 October 2010

Xujing, Art Labor Gallery, Shanghai, China

On a recent trip to China, WGSN's editor of Macro Trends Cher Potter came across the work of German artist Roland Geissel at the Art Labor Gallery in Shanghai. Geissel has been creating and documenting site specific Spatial Drawings since 2000. These room paintings are projections of the interior space of an earlier series of work; a colleciton of solid objects collectivley called The Melusines.

HBL Designer Profile: Catherine Hammerton

Thursday 14 October 2010

During London Design Week, WGSN were happy to discover designer Catherine Hammerton's multi-textured wallpapers and accessories at the pop up design store Curiosity in Clerkenwell. Her wallpapers and home accessories feature digitally printed collages of pressed flowers, hand drawn illustrations, vintage typography and everyday odds and ends. Everything she makes is 100% designed and made in the UK and available through her website. More images after the jump.

HBL Designer Profile: Hello Industry

Odd bowl/vase/pendant lights by Jonas Wagell
Hello Industry is a Swedish design Studio that was launched last year by designer and architect Jonas Wagell. The studio describe their first collection of products as 'happy and clever'. Ranging from multifunctional pieces such as the Odd bowl/vase/pendant lights to a table lamp designed to make a aesthetical feature out of the new low energy bulbs. WGSN also loves their considered approach to packaging design, the simple but clear graphics make the packaging almost as covetable as the contents. More images after the jump.

HBL Materials: Modern Primitive Plastics by Jane Bowler

Wednesday 13 October 2010

Working with recycled plastics and heat-welding techniques, designer Jane Bowler has created a collection that fuses the iconic British mackintosh with traditional Japanese straw raincoats for a modern primitive aesthetic, as highlighted in WGSN's spring/summer 2012 macro trends.

Her Fusion project explores an inventive manipulation of plastics - from shower curtains to recycled rubber flooring - that uses stitchless techniques of heat-forming and ultrasonic welding to create exciting new surfaces and textures.

View the full report here.

HBL Materials Analysis: Chris Lefteri on Reimagination

Tuesday 12 October 2010

Flake textile by Woodnotes
Materials expert Chris Lefteri writes for Homebuildlife this week on the subject of 'reimagination'. This new movement sees designers reacting to the economic downturn with a mixture of ingenuity, defiance and optimism about what the future may bring.

HBL Events: London Design Festival highlights

Monday 11 October 2010

Amidst a week of frenzied design activity, glass artist Kate Maestri's pieces were a calm and contemplative highlight of 2010's London Design Festival. Inspired by iconic examples of London's architectural history, including the Barbican and the National Theatre, Maestri uses two key components, colour and form, to create stunning yet simple wall pieces which hold the gaze.

HBL Trend Analysis: Sun Loungers

Friday 8 October 2010

Royal Botania

Homebuildlife has taken a look at the newest and best in outdoor furniture. Trends in sun loungers range from cocoon to rockers to mixed use, and though it's getting chilly in New York and London, HBL trends analyst Heloisa Righetto will be the first to remind us that it will soon be summer in Brazil!

HBL Kids Lifestyle: Tokyo Baby Cafe by Nendo

Tuesday 5 October 2010

The Tokyo Baby Cafe is located in the up market Omotesando area of Tokyo and is described as a parent and child cafe. Designed by Japanese designer Nendo, the cafe is a place where adults can a spend time with their children and socialise with friends without worrying about those around them.

HBL Tradeshows: +Chae Young Kim at 100% Futures

Monday 4 October 2010

Korean designer Chae Young Kim exhibited her collection of digital textile designs at 100% Futures in London last month. Generated using very fine 2D vector lines combined with hand drawings, the grayscale prints create the illusion of soft and tactile knits on hard surfaces and fabrics.