Product Design Archive

  1. Drlist

    In 1976 leading designer Dieter Rams sketched out some of his core beliefs in front of an audience in New York City. Concerning his work with Vitsoe, it’s an invaluable insight into the principles on which the work of one of the 20th Century’s leading design figures were based and is a must-read for creatives across any design discipline. Massively ahead of its time and bursting with sound advice, the full transcript has just been released to mark Dieter’s 80th birthday later this month.

  2. Cclist

    Next week sees the return of the Craft Council’s annual jamboree Collect, a celebration of the very best ceramic, glass, jewellery, textiles, wood, furniture, silver and fine metalwork by both new talent and established artist. To whet your crafty appetite (as in your appetite for craft not your cunning) they are counting down by asking a selection of top arts and design types to choose an object that encompasses everything they love about this eclectic, painstaking medium.

  3. List

    The small things from childhood that we forget easily – like your granddad ruffling your hair or your favourite cup to drink out of – are what Japanese studio Nendo want us to cling on to and they’re realising this themselves through collecting the everyday into concrete, easily understood design. This year alone they’ve produced a huge amount of compact projects of joy that are both playful but well-executed.

  4. Ikcameralist

    With everyone apparently now a photographer thanks to the ubiquity of camera phones and inexpensive digital snappers, the design story has so far been one of ever increasing sleek and cool aesthetics. Maybe though what was needed was for someone to create a camera whose look echoed the simple functionality which remains all important in the mass market. Well step forward Ikea who are set to launch the KNÄPPA which they have developed with Stockholm’s Teenage Engineering – it’s a cardboard digital camera which can store 40 pictures and plugs directly into a computer. Hip? No. Revolutionary? Potentially.

  5. Cranetd

    “I’ve been writing to robot companies for the past five years,” sounds like the ramblings of a madman but it’s actually a line from this excellent film about the ever-tremendous Tom Dixon. Anyone who has been to The Dock – the designer’s riverside HQ – during London Design Festival knows how well he does these big public events, and during Salone last week he set up shop at the National Museum of Science and Technology in Milan. Our pals at Crane.tv were out there and produced this piece showcasing not only the impressive set-up but Tom’s ideas about technology, creativity and commerce.

  6. Listairdrop_edward-linnacre_ah24

    There’s obviously a place for – and a very good living to be made in – design that solves the small everyday issues like making car seats more comfortable or bus timetables more legible. But many designers harbour ambitions to tackle some of the world’s most intractable problems and The James Dyson Award rewards some of this kind of inspired idealism.

  7. Dmlist

    In this Olympic year it was always going to be a hot favourite and sure enough Barber Osgerby’s Olympic Torch won the coveted Design of Year, it was announced tonight.

  8. Noman-6

    Once you know that NOMAN is the collective efforts of a fashion designer, Selina Parr, and a product designer, Lara Tolman, it becomes wonderfully, obviously clear that the design sensibilities of one is clearly affecting the other; be it material, how a form just hangs or the careful assortment of colour and texture. For this reason, they tell us, we could discuss whether their work as “designed art of useless design.” But, of course, fashion is never just limited to garments that are worn and NOMAN’s vital directive is to “carry out an atomsphere.” which they do with installations and a deliberate and aesthetic extroversion of standard inanimate forms; lengthening, colouring, iterating and carefully composing – not totally un-like dressing a model for couture – their end goal being that to afford the concept of ‘fashion’ a “broader interpretation.”

  9. Noijelll-list

    Jelly is probably one of the most fun foods there is. Regardless of whether you like the taste, you can’t deny the wobbling, translucent bundles of joy will always bring a smile to your face. For Raphaël Pluvinage and Marianne Cauvard though, they wanted more from jelly, so have cranked up the fun factor to 11 (and the weird factor to about 7) and created the game Noisy Jelly in which players can make sweet melodies from the gelatinous dessert.

  10. Ecallist

    Gherkins, like politics and skinny jeans, tend to split opinion. Depending on which side of the delicious/disgusting divide you inhabit will determine your reaction to Cranchion by Joseph Gallix which is part of renowned Lausanne art/design school ECAL’s Milan showcase. Combining “the plebeian product and the vanity represented by the skull” Joseph has produced something undeiniably eye-catching.

  11. Lp_01

    Rust, we were taught by parents frantically retrieving bicycles left carelessly out in the rain, is to be avoided at all costs. It’s ugly, they told us, and damaging – a stark sign of dilapidation easily avoided.

  12. List-elisa-strozyk

    Elisa Strozyk had us at Wooden Carpet, the beautifully crafted isometric floor covering made from hard wood, but we’ll take her Accordian Collection too. A designer with a penchant for surfaces and surprising manipulations of very traditional materials, this latest work created in collaboration with artist Sebastian Neeb, continues with Elisa’s affinity for creating unusual textiles.

  13. Nightshop-pov-list

    We’re going to be treated to all sorts of design gems in the build up to this years Milan furniture fair, and occasionally these products might even look like jewels. The P.O.V vase by NIGHTSHOP (Ward van Gemert and Adriaan van deer Ploeg) is an iridescent vessel with a perspective heavy design, changing colour as you move about it. Tasking themselves in creating “surprising products,” the vase more than qualifies.

  14. Cel-list-porcelain-garden-detail

    Porcelain is such a delicate material that as an indelicate child I was often kept away from the pearlised slopes of a figurine, the voluptuous derriere of a vase, and the regal arch of a teapot handle. It’s because of this isolation that I can’t help but be entranced by anything porcelain now – even a toilet seat has sometimes rendered me speechless, but most recently, it’s been the work of Buenos Aires born, Cecilia Borghi that’s enchanted me.

  15. Calcfront

    “Math is beautiful. Arithmetic is simple. Rechner is both.” It may sound like the strapline of a particularly leftfield perfume advert but actually that’s what Colorado-based designers Todd Berger and Lucian Föhr say about their new app which creates the world’s first minimalist gesture-based calculator. Taking the touchscreen iTechnology we’ve all come to know and love, they’ve applied it to one of the world’s most basic products with stylish results. Certain swipes engage different mathematical functions (multiply, divide etc) and both in aesthetics and functionality this appears to be a significant milestone on the road to a time when this technology is ubiquitous.

  16. Liliana-ovalle-list

    The Mugroso Couch, Mugrosita chair and El Otro (de los Mugrosos) sofa are an ongoing collection started in 2006 of casually-composed seating pieces inspired by the “improvisation and low resources” of the people in Mexico City. Royal College of Art graduate and Mexico-city-born designer, Liliana Ovalle, has taken the functional ingenuity of binding, tying and pushing through carriables onto wire frames and transportation trollies, applying this collage-like logic to her furniture. The results are wonderfully aesthetic, intuitively constructed with a direct line to their reference material, all in all, telling a very nice design story.

  17. Scoooot

    Scooters have a bit of a bad reputation as a must-have hipster accessory (think Nathan Barley) but I have to admit that the new SwiftyONE Chrome from Jason and Camilla Iftakhar might break the mould. Firstly it’s beautifully designed and made – sleek and stylish. Secondly, it’s robust enough to make you feel like you are actually using something built for adults (rather than ironically using a child’s toy) and yet it only weighs 7.5kg.

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