Posts Tagged ‘TOBYhouse’

smow design spring Top 5: Lamps

Wednesday, June 24th, 2009
Kete by David Turnbridge

Kete by David Turnbridge

The Top 5 Lamps from the smow design spring. In no particular order.

Kete by David Turnbridge. One of the first lamps we saw in Milan, and probably that which left the greatest impression on us. And not merely on account of its size. For us the principle beauty of Kete is the atmosphere it can create in a room with it 7W LED element. And despite their overproprtionality Kete doesn’t domiante the room. Honest.  Kete. Anything but dull.

moooi.

Beachballs by TOBYhouse at designersblock, Milan

Beachballs by TOBYhouse at designersblock, Milan

Beach Ball Lamps by TOBYhouse. When we first saw Beach Ball Lamps we thought they were made from shaped aluminium. So stable and rigid are they. Only after entering into converstaion with designer Toby Sanders did we discover that they are real beach balls. And that was when the product became magic. That was the moment when we realised and appreciated just what a product we had before us. And that was the moment when we started to investiagte more carefully. Through a specialy developed process TOBYhouse coat the inside of the balls with a thin polyeurethene coat, before cutting the bottom open and rounding the edges. And with it’s brillant white interior Beach Ball Lamps offers an excellent illumination. Beach Balls Lamps. Anything but dull.

moooi.

Flatline by Jason Brugges for Established and Sons

Flatline by Jason Brugges for Established and Sons

Flatliner by Jason Bruge for Established and Sons. We don’t own an iPod which is probably why we took a  couple of minutes to get the hang of the control system. Had it been based on an MD player we would have got the hang of it much quicker. However, once up and running we were in awe of Jason Bruge’s genial dimming system. And the quality of the illumination generated is every bit as convincing. If you don’t know what were talking about, check out our (smow)tube video. Flatliner. Anything but dull.

moooi.

Fiss Family by My Own Super Studio

Fiss Family by My Own Super Studio

Fiss Family by myownsuperstudio. DMY in Berlin was full of lamps. We’re not exactly sure why but we’re fairly certain it had something to do with students being set lamp design as part of their final year project. A sort of conspiracy among product and industrial design lecturers to make earth shine more brightly than the sun. Fiss Family by Portugese outfit myownsuperstudio wouldn’t have been much help in such a plot, but was without doubt one of the finest lamp ranges we saw this spring. For us the beauty lies in the fact that the light flows downwards; consequently, they don’t produce the brightest illumination, but that which they do produce is amongst the softest we saw this spring and certainly the best intended for a living room or office when you want a gentle background light or constant, atmospheric illumination. Fiss Family. Anything but dull.

moooi.

Spin by Tom Dixon

Spin by Tom Dixon

Spin by Tom Dixon. Not a lamp in the popular, modern electrified sense. But then were not sticklers for convention. Correctly used candles can offer a better, more positive illuminaton than their modern cousins. The trick is the “correctly used” part. With Spin Tom Dixon offers a wonderfully stylish opportunity not only to illuminate a space as we want it, but also to change the illumination as and when required. Spin. Anything but dull.

And a special mention goes to moooi for their Horse Lamp.

smow in Milan: designersblock

Friday, April 24th, 2009

Here in Milan we have the main trade fair in the exhibition centre, the main “off-site” around the Via Tortona, and then the more extensive off-off-site which encompasses more or less the whole of the city.

And so it was that we ventured yesterday evening into the wilds of north Milan in search of the designersblock showcase – the 9th of its kind organised by the London based collective

After the compulsory getting lost and walking in the wrong direction we eventually arrived … and quickly regained our calm thanks largely to the works on display.

Truly, after a couple of days at the “proper” exhibition it was a real joy to view some truly innovative, interesting and functional designs.

Space prevents us from naming all that we liked, however, by way of a short selection.

Beachballs by TOBYhouse at designersblock

Beachballs by TOBYhouse at designersblock

Beach Ball Lamps by TOBYhouse (England)

These are real beach balls, coated in resin and then cut open. Colourfully painted on the outside and white on the inside they are a delightful play on classic “ball” lamps. Bright without being garish, retro without being cliched, and a serious adult design that can also be appreciated by children.

Ropeshelf by Laszlo Rozsnoki at designersblock

Ropeshelf by Laszlo Rozsnoki at designersblock

Ropeshelf by Laszlo Rozsnoki (Germany)

As with all well named products the name leaves little room for misinterpretation. it’s shelves formed from rope. Tightly stretched, secure rope. Although clearly not an object for storing small objects, Ropeshelf is ideal for books and/or CDs – although the user should always be aware that under the weight of the articles the shelves sink and so plan a little in advance ;) A nicely constructed product that not only looks good but works.

Origami Chair by So Takahashi Design at designersblock

Origami Chair by So Takahashi Design at designersblock

Origami Chair by So Takahashi Design (Japan/USA/Norway)

At first glance the Origami Chair looks like it could barely resist the force a slight draft – far less a well fed north European male. But just as origami gives paper a deceptive strength, so the construction of the Origami chair allows the wonderfully waif-like design to provide  comfortable, secure support.

Foldable cardboard chair by Stuart Miller at deignersblock

Foldable cardboard chair by Stuart Miller at deignersblock

“Unnamed” by Stuart Miller (Scotland)

My notes on this simply say “Chair, cardboard, comes apart, very comfy, bloody students” More on what that all means later. However for now it suffices to say that for us this foldable cardboard chair is one of the discoveries of the fair so far. Took a problem, analysed it, solved it. And that with style and comfort. Lovely.