The Witchcraft chair is made with sorghum cushions. The inspiration comes from the will to bring to life a material lately abandoned and connected to our tradition, through its use in an unusual field. Giorgio Biscaro met one of the last producer of sorghum broom and was surprised by the flexibility and richness of this material. The chair has a metal frame painted in pastel colours, giving it a warm and reassuring feeling. Thanks to the fiber flexibility, the backrest adapt itself to the back of the user, providing great ergonomic. I wonder if that pink version has a name; I would call it Cinderella.
Born in South Korea, Namhee Lee graduated with a degree in design and worked as a commercial interior designer predominantly in the fashion industry for over ten years. She moved to New York in 2002, started a family, and continued pursuing her passion for melding form and fashion. Now a mother of two sons, Maddox and Ian, Namhee is inspired daily about the role beautiful objects can play in a happy home, both with regard to function and fashion. Namhee‘s creations are available at Yoya, ABC Carpet and Home and Pommein New York, as well as Etsy.com.
S.O.O.N?, a project by Kompott, was on display at the RCA Show in London. Kompott is a multidisciplinary collaboration between young, creative people (Pawe Jasiewicz, Maja Ganszyniec, Krystian Kowalski and Marcin Krygier). “This project recalls times when Fathers would make and repair their children’s toys by themselves, with the materials they had readily available. Toys created and built by a child’s parents carry a far greater emotional value, they are a statement of individuality and longevity. S.O.O.N is an attempt at reviving the creativity that lies in all of us. Using inexpensive and easily obtainable materials (in this case the IKEA vika lilleby trestel), a few pieces of cloth or felt (for instance an old blanket), simple tools (a saw and a screwdriver) and instructions, we can all build a toy for our child. This is only the beginning of our independence! A crisis is a good time for a change and a return to our roots, do we have to be mindless consumers?”. A questions to ask ourselves as often as possible.
This little table made of bamboo with large drawer is called Geos. The drawer can be pulled out from both sides. To go with it, Lillys the chair, in timeless design. Both products are available in three colours, black, red and blue. Company WeDoWood. Price £180 and £125.
I had a total crush on ‘péro’, a label showing exclusively at White for Kids in Milan, and created byAneeth Arora, a textile graduate from National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad + fashion graduate from National Institute of Fashion Technology. Aneeth creates wonderful clothing, utilizing indigenous knowledge of ancient textile and clothing traditions of India. ‘péro‘ means ‘to wear’ in Marwari which is the local langauge of Rajasthan. Most garments are inspired by the local dressing styles from the remotest areas. ‘péro’ recreates and adapts these styles for the modern consumer who loves the aesthetic, but also the ease, comfort and pleasure provided by the simple shapes. The textiles are handmade in various parts of india and each collection incorporates at least five traditional techniques from the country, for example block prints from Rajasthan, Jamdani from West Bengal, woven textiles from Maheshwar, Khadi from Calcutta. Each piece is hand crafted and passes through the hands of atleast 5 to 12 crafts people. The result is a collection of amazing pieces with incredible hand feel, stunning details and absolutely delicious look. They are like art, or museum pieces in which a child can have a normal life and feel comfortable. I have to say that it was love at first sight, and confirmation of the feeling when I saw some pieces left from the former collection at the store Few and Farin London. A brand that both Rei Kawakubo and Dries Van Noten would love…
Lots of organic shapes and ultra textured surfaces at Expo 2010 in Shanghai. The most incredible example is the strikingUK pavilion with its sea urchin aspect (made with 60,000 slender transparent rods). “Is it for real, mom?”…
“Flapjack”is a furniture collection designed for children bySebastian Bergneand edited by French companyThe Collection. The pieces of furniture are eco-friendly (water based varnish) and they have been concieved to be children’s scale : not too high, easy to move.They are playful, they are well designed and they are also educative. The armoire allows to hang clothes in and outside, and it serves as a measuring panel.
In the unit “Box”, shoes or toys can be stored elegantly. Children can sit on them, but more interesting even, they can train to do their own laces.
The greatMaria Montessoriwould have loved seeing this furniture, designed to be used by children and to encourage their autonomy, teaching them how to tidy up on their own. A big thank you toThe Collectionfor the launch of this eco-friendly children’s furniture department called« the little Collection ». Can’t wait to see the next projects.www.thecollection.fr
Sharon Tullochis an illustrator and a graphic artist. If you have visited the e-storesocute.biz, you will have for sure noticed her cocktail of hand-drawn and computer-generated illustrations. Sharon was born in London, spent time in New York and currently lives in sunny and colorful Marseille (France) where she moved many years ago. I believe her culture and mobility is reflected in her work, very fresh and full of life, with characters and figures leaping out at you, possessing a haunting innocence. Sharon works on brand identity, logos, illustrations, children’s books, web design and graphics for items such as bags, t-shirt, and much more. Her latest projects include the 2008 Spring catalogue ofNew York based jewelry designerginette_ny. Keep an eye on Sharon’s work, contact her for projects you may have: her versatile style, her graphic talent and her adaptation skills are precious.www.sharon-and-i.net.
Do you know Smiling Planet? Behind beautiful designs and peaceful messages, this remarkable company delivers plates and bowls with no BPA, no phthalates, no lead, no toxic inks. It’s not all : made from 100% recycled, 100% recyclable, the plates and bowls are stackable, top rack dishwasher safe, virtually unbreakable and the one-inch vertical sides on the plates helps keeping food on forks and off the table. The new collection, including “Dreaming Dragons” (picture above), has just been shipped to Paul Smith and Liberty in London.
I metZoe de las Cases at Maison et Objet in January and I really had a crush on her, on her booth, on her creations. She was really standing out, with her fresh and very focused collection of little decor objects. So nostalgic and so modern at the same time. Her video is a good reflexion of who she is and what she does. I constantly hear that little piano tune in my ear…
With the Sky Planter, Boskke really transforms the way people enjoy plants in their living environments. This company from New Zealand was no longer satisfied with having plants relegated to the remote corners of a room, so they elevated them into stunning interior features. Living spaces should be as beautiful and tranquil as a forest glade, no? Boskke’s designer Patrick Morris found a way of bringing more greenery into homes without cluttering the floor-space. Look up. Children will love this other way of contemplating life!
Milan Furniture Fair was packed with colors, great material innovations and playful shapes. Children were quite largerly featured in catalogs and other selling tools, but I have to say that there were rather few products directly related to children. Nothing like the last decade that so many proposals for the children’s rooms and play areas. Let’s hope that a new generation of designers is working on projects for the coming years. If you hear of anything interesting, let me know!