DeLonghi at IFA 2012

Friday 31 August 2012

Launching at IFA 2012 this weekend, De'Longhi's new appliance set Breakfast Series Brillante features a glossy faceted surface inspired by a cut diamond.

Sony at IFA 2012

Sony VAIO Duo 11

IFA 2012 is now in full swing, with both trade and public tech enthusiasts flocking to Berlin's Messe to look at - and test out - the latest innovations from the industry's biggest players.

Electronics giant Sony unveiled a host of new products at its press conference, with CEO Kazuo Hirai personally taking the stage to announce, one by one: an 84" 4K LCD TV; a wearable, Wi-Fi enabled ActionCam; a sleek hybrid UltraBook; and the phone that James Bond will be using in his next movie, the Xperia T.

CC Tapis: flooring from France, designed in Milan & produced in Nepal

Founded in 1943 in Persia and well-known in France for more than 40 years, Maison Chamszadeh created CC Tapis in 2001 with the aim of infusing the world of traditional handmade carpets with a conceptual approach.

XO- in my room: timeless kids' furniture

Candy Circus crib

Rustic kids' furniture brand XO- in my room is a venture by three brothers, who - inspired by their children and a shared passion for good quality furniture - have created a range of inventive alternatives to larger production pieces.

#welldoneteamgb by NeverBland

British digital design agency NeverBland has created a scrolling animation in honour of Team GB's huge success at the London 2012 Olympics.

By Kamy at São Paulo Design Weekend

One of Brazil's most well-known rug brands, By Kamy, has celebrated the very first Design Weekend in São Paulo by transforming its shop at Alameda Gabriel Monteiro da Silva (one of the city's interiors hubs) into a sensory space inspired by a jungle.

Versatile desks

Margaux Keller
As user-friendly software connections allow more and more people to work from home, the furniture industry is redirecting its attention to a key element of this space, the desk.

Libeco Home: Autumn 2012 collection

Thursday 30 August 2012

Soft washed colours, faded checks, and a deep, cosy colour palette of burgundies, browns and burnt umber inform the autumn 2012 collection by Belgian linen interiors brand Libeco Home.

The Potluck Restaurant

This mix-and-match restaurant concept is the graduation project of RCA student Lola Lely. Called the Potluck Restaurant, the project aims to bring community spirit back to Londoners' lives.

The New York Times, 36 Hours: 125 Weekends in Europe

Wednesday 29 August 2012

The New York Times, 36 Hours: 125 Weekends in Europe; illustration by Olimpia Zagnoli

The European editions of the New York Times' popular 36 Hours series, which takes aspiring travellers on whistlestop journeys to cultural destinations, have now been collected into one book: The New York Times, 36 Hours: 125 Weekends in Europe by Barbara Ireland (Taschen, 2012).

Craft+Design and Paralela Gift: patterns everywhere

Tuesday 28 August 2012

The latest editions of Craft + Design and Paralela Gift contain almost no plain objects. From couches to bags, there is hardly anything on show at either Brazilian homewares fair that doesn't make use of pattern.

Illusion table by Roberta Rampazzo

Roberta Rampazzo's latest design plays with the viewer's perception by defying our ideas of stability and balance. The Brazilian designer used a simple shape - four legs and a tabletop - as the starting point of her project. By altering the angle of two of the legs, Rampazzo then completely changed the aesthetics of the piece.

Lin Morris: quietly brilliant objects

Founded by WGSN-homebuildlife alumni Jean Lin and Ali Morris in 2011, online boutique Lin Morris offers a select range of design-led pieces - from jewellery and soft accessories to tableware - as well as a growing series of exclusive collaborations with designers.

The site's regularly updated blog documents the pair's finds as they travel around the world covering tradeshows, events, and anything and everything design-related, and is a thoughtful and always interesting place to find out about what's new in the creative world.

Inflated/Deflated: alternative balloons

These balloons each bear a hand-written, heartfelt message that provides a refreshing alternative to mainstream gifting options.

Washable keyboard by Logitech

Friday 24 August 2012

Logitech has launched a keyboard which can be submerged into water. The Logitech Washable Keyboard K310 features drainage holes and durable laser-printed, UV coated keys, and can be handwashed in water up to 11 inches deep and 50° C in temperature.

Menu additions at Abigail Kirsch

Breakfast dessert trio by Abigail Kirsch

Renowned NY caterer Abigail Kirsch has launched a number of new creations to refresh its current menu - including a taco and margarita cart, and bitesize savoury spiced doughnuts.

Cheeseburger Wrap by Gift Couture

Thursday 23 August 2012

The first product from new US wrapping paper brand Gift Couture is a set of wrapping papers designed to resemble the components of a burger.

S.Bensimon Gallery presents Discipline

Origin of the Drink by Pauline Deltour & Lars Frideen
During Paris Design Week this September, French gallery S.Bensimon will present works by Discipline, a new Italian editor of furniture and accessories. Launched earlier this year at the Salone del Mobile in Milan , the brand's products will also be featured in Bensimon's Parisian store Home Autour du Monde.

Casetagram: photos brought to life

Instagram is not only one of the most succesful smartphone apps available but also a growing social media, which allows users to transform everyday images into elaborate pictures using a variety of filters and effects. More recently, Instagram has crossed over into real-life products, with small companies developing a number of objects that can be personalised using the images.

Casetagram offers eight types of template and three background colours for consumers to make their own smartphone, iPad and iPod cases. Prices start at $34.95. Subscribers can read our full report on Instagram products here.

Art Drive! London

Wednesday 22 August 2012

BMW M3 by M.J Nelson, 1989, at Art Drive!

BMW and London's ICA teamed up this summer for Art Drive! - an exhibition spread across five floors of a multistorey car park in Shoreditch, east London, featuring 16 cars painted by international artists.

Ceramics by Caroline Rhys-Lewis

British mixed media artist Caroline Rhys-Lewis specialises in porcelain pieces that have a functional form but sculptural qualities - often incorporating fine materials such as feathers and lace into her work.

São Paulo Design Weekend

Brazil's biggest city will host its very first design festival, Design Weekend, from 23 -26 August. Inspired by Milan's Fuori Salone and the London Design Festival, the organisers of the event have put together a line-up of talks, exhibitions and workshops in collaboration with artists, designers, shops and brands.

The idea is to celebrate the city's creative industry and grow design awarenesse among citizens by promoting free events in several locations.

Soft toys by Tamar Mogendorff

Swan couple by Tamar Mogendorff
Brooklyn-based designer Tamar Mogendorff creates whimsical hand-made soft toys, to furnish nurseries, playrooms or adult spaces.

Concrete: scale, texture & impact

Noppenhalle, Zurich - Baierbischofberger Architects

Phaidon's upcoming coffee table book release, Concrete (due out September 2012), takes readers on a tour of the material's use in architecture - from its role in ancient Rome through to its contemporary profile. 180 buildings are examined by author William Hall, with examples from around the world featured alongside instantly recognisable works by Zaha Hadid, Peter Zumthor and Herzog & de Meuron.

Subscribers can read about concrete's role in contemporary design in our materials reports, Concrete Matters and Made of: Concrete.

Venini at Venice Architecture Biennale

Tuesday 21 August 2012

For the 13th International Architecture Exhibition, the new permanent Le Stanze del Vetro exhibition space (which literally translates to "Rooms for Glass") at Fondazione Giorgio Cini will be inaugurated with a show exploring Carlo Scarpa's history at legendary glass house Venini.

Imperfect ceramics by Rae Dunn

Porcelain botany vase

Designer Rae Dunn creates unique tableware items and decorative accessories, using the tactile nature of clay to personalise her work.

Dessert Girl

The tagline of Dessert Girl tells you all you need to know about this blog: it's "where design and dessert meet". With much of the innovation in food design at the moment emerging in the form of desserts and pastries, Dessert Girl is often where you will find out about leaders in the field - from Lisa Mishima to Ayako Kurokawa.

The BIG Chair Project

Monday 20 August 2012

The BIG Chair Project; photo David Parry/PA

British chef Jamie Oliver has teamed up with design brand Fritz Hansen to celebrate ten years of his restaurant Fifteen - by auctioning off an army of Arne Jacobsen's famous Ant chairs, each one customised by one of twenty different artists and designers.

Digital Crystal: Swarovski at the Design Museum

Hard Coded Memory by Troika

The next exhibition at London's Design Museum combines the work of new-gen designers with Swarovski's crystal archives. Running 5 September 2012 to 13 January 2013, Digital Crystal: Swarovski at the Design Museum explores the concept of how our tangible lifestyles are revolving into a digital age.

Colours and tactility at NYIGF

PMO Design at NYIGF
2,800 exhibitors from over 50 countries are taking part in the latest edition of the New York International Gift Fair, once again held in Javits Center. Here are some highlights from the first two days of the fair, which runs until August 22.

Luggage lifestyle: suitcase psychology

A new survey by Virgin Atlantic has shown that suitcases and travel equipment are more than ever purchased to reflect their owner's lifestyle, aspirations and self-image. The results, released on Friday, found that 32% of women consider buying new luggage based on their destination; 25% of 16-24 year olds would buy new luggage to copy a celebrity's choice; and 12% of respondents have upgraded their luggage to ensure it is more stylish than that of their travelling companion.

Subscribers can read more about the psychology of travelling accessories, and the consumer groups behind them, in our recent report, Luggage Lifestyle.

Emergency kits for pets

The Orvis Emergency Pet Travel Kit

The burgeoning market for emergency kits of all capacities responds to consumers who want to be prepared in case a major disaster strikes close to home. Now, two new kits have adapted the format for pets and owners.

The Orvis Emergency Pet Travel Kit is an all-in-one organiser that includes a collapsible bowl, a collar/lead combo, a roll of pick-up bags and a basic first aid kit. The nylon bag features four elasticised compartments for pet travel accessories.

Ercol x Ptolemy Mann

British textile designer and colour specialist Ptolemy Mann has collaborated with Ercol on a limited edition of the Studio Couch. The solid elm and beech wood frame of the original 1950s design contrasts with Mann's signature bold, hand-dyed fabric - available for this piece in two colourways, Charcoal (dark grey and hot pink) and Geranium (orange, red and lime green brights). The design retails at £2090 plus fabric.

Foscarini at Venice Architecture Biennale

Friday 17 August 2012

Italian lighting brand Foscarini will furnish the key areas of the Venice Architecture Biennale with its designs this autumn.

Binatone Kettle by Craig Thurston

Loughborough University graduate Craig Thurston has designed a kettle that indicates the temperature of water by changing colour, from blue to red. As the water heats up, the aqua tone changes to a vivid red, giving a clear visual indication.

McIntosh: modern tech with a retro twist

The MXA60 OXYGEN by McIntosh
US hi-fi and home cinema brand McIntosh specialises in products which combine the latest technological advances with a vintage look.

Sight Unseen: Paper View

Wednesday 15 August 2012

Published in April in collaboration with Karlsson Vodka Unfiltered, this physical edition of the behind-the-scenes design website Sight Unseen offers up a selection of Jill Singer and Monica Khemsurov's features, as well as an essay on the subject of "what two years of interviews have taught us about what it’s like to be a maker".

Faber by Andrew Knott

Product design graduate Andrew Knott has created a kit for craftspeople to send to customers, in advance of a completed order, which documents the making process and lets them feel more involved.

Five Forks on the Subject of Critical Design by Thomas Walde

Following on from the personal cutlery set we featured yesterday, this set of forks by Thomas Walde of Postfossil explores a future where eating meat is frowned upon.

The series progresses from a fork which makes the cutting process difficult, to one which makes it impossible. "The product stands for a vision of a low-meat diet in Europe," says Walde.

Personal Cutlery by Thomas Walde

Tuesday 14 August 2012

This one-person cutlery set by Thomas Walde, of Swiss design collective Postfossil, revives a traditional custom of carrying 'personal cutlery' for oneself throughout the day.

La Super Supérette: industrial food made at home

French website La Super Supérette documents the day-to-day adventures of culinary explorers Lucie & Mélanie, as they attempt to recreate industrially-made snack foods and classic French treats at home, using readily available ingredients and simple DIY techniques.

Telephone concept by Gosia Babiak

Monday 13 August 2012

Telephone concept by Gosia Babiak

Graduate designer Gosia Babiak has designed a concept for a telephone that encourages sharing. The proposal consists of a cluster of individual spherical handsets, displayed together and inspired in form by bowls of fruit - which Babiak describes as "a symbol of sharing".

Carlo Mollino's Casa Cattaneo furnishings go to auction

London auction house Christie’s will present a collection of furnishings from the Casa Cattaneo, designed in 1953 by Carlo Mollino, the most sought-after Italian designer of the twentieth century, in its sale of 20th Century Decorative Art & Design on 23 October 2012.

Pulp: Molecular Mixology by Richard Watters

Northumbria University product design graduate Richard Watters has designed this new concept for mixing drinks at home. Inspired by molecular gastronomy, the system consists of a set of fresh ingredients, packed pre-measured so that users can create complex cocktails quickly and easily at home.

Forfars bakery, Sussex by Josh Bitelli

Friday 10 August 2012

To celebrate the 75th birthday of Sussex-based bakery Forfars, graduate designer Josh Bitelli cast ceramic trophies using a mould made of bread, then burnt away the pieces using a blowtorch to reveal the finished piece.

Spargo lamp by Felix McCormack

British designer Felix McCormack showed these floor-standing concrete and turned oak lamps at One Year On, the showcase of makers at the start of their careers that take places each summer at New Designers.

Mind The System, Find The Gap

Thursday 9 August 2012

Based On A Grid (2012) by Esther Stocker; photo: Z33/Kristof Vrancken

Belgian gallery Z33's largest exhibition ever, Mind The System, Find The Gap, sees 30 designers investigating the gaps in our society's systems - from inventing fake online identities to getting away with smuggling unnoticed, taking advantage of money-back guarantees to live for free and proposing controversial foodstuffs for future living.

Renegade Craft Fair, Los Angeles

A smaller fourth annual LA edition of Renegade Craft, the globe-trotting maker's fair, was held July 28-29 and attracted the city's designers, collectors, DIYers and fans of indie-craft culture. Of the trends to emerge, Americana was an overriding theme, with American geography providing inspiration for print and pattern.

Embroidered wallpaper by Claire Coles

Wednesday 8 August 2012

Midnight Garden by Claire Coles

British designer Claire Coles specialises in couture embroidered wallpaper. Made of collages of motifs from vintage papers, machine-stitched on to luxurious paper backings, each roll is different and arrangements are tailored to suit the spaces they are intended for.

Farmers market food: Christmas 2012 retail preview

Sainsburys Christmas 2012 preview, London

The emphasis is on food for Christmas 2012, with consumers expected to buy into low-cost fine dining at home during a double dip recession. At this summer's previews, supermarkets were specifically promoting British produce in an attempt to aid the recovery of Britain's first such recession since the 1970s.

Material Matters: New materials in design

The Institute of Making's creative director, Zoe Laughlin, and researcher, Philip Howes, have teamed up to create a brand new guide to the materials of tomorrow. Material Matters: New materials in design (Black Dog Publishing, 2012) documents the seminal materials emerging across five chemical categories - metal, glass, ceramics, polymers and composites - and breaks each one down by its physical properties.