Minimalissimo


Categorized “Furniture design”

In February Noon Studio launched their latest iternation of the steel stool we have featured in the past. I did like the previous edition, the simple construction and use of honest materials, but I like the latest iternation even better. The founders of Noon Studio, Gautier Pelegron and Vincent Taiani, have worked on a few important details in the construction and decided to powder coat paint the high grade steel sheet. I love the contrast of the oiled European ash and the black steel. Pelegron and Taiani say the stool is influenced by traditional English craftsmanship and Provencal (southeastern France) rawness. The stool tries to express the direct simplicity found in real traditional antique Provencal furniture and the know-how of British craftsmanship which still holds today. The stool is not just a stool. One can easliy use it as a side or coffee table, book holder or shelving system.


Marco Guazzini’s Tre bien umbrella stand stands as a pillar of beautiful minimalism. His philosophy is based on a sensorial contact with the matter and the beginning of things generating emotion. For him, the emphasis is to design to return processed experiences. He plays with a combination of shapes, feelings, sensations, details, memories, lights, suggestions, colors and gestures. Born in Florence, but now based out of Milan, Guazzini is focused on being utilitarian and simplistically beautiful. Tre bien is an umbrella stand designed to accommodate both large and small umbrellas. Structurally, this item inspired by three radial elements, stemming from a central spine. The piece is also fitted with a powder-coated metal tray at the bottom to capture the moisture present. This piece hints geometrically at something really interesting, and fits its brief quite suitably of being functional and fearless. Photography courtesy of Beppe Brancato.


London based designer Benjamin Hubert in collaboration with Canadian woodworking firm Corelam created this beautiful table, called Ripple. Made entirely from 3 ply 0.8mm birch aircraft plywood, Ripple is quite possibly the world’s lightest timber table of its size. The piece is 2.5 metres long, 1 metre wide, and weighs just 9 kilograms. The impressive strength to weight ratio is achieved by corrugating plywood and using it as a main material in this project. Designer explains: Ripple is minimal in its design language, employing a simple knockdown construction. The top surface is corrugated plywood overlaid by a flat sheet, and the A-frame legs are a sandwich construction of two corrugated plywood layers. There is also an eco-friendly aspect to this design. Thanks to its clever construction, Ripple takes 70-80% less material than a standard timber table. Check out the video to see the making of the piece.


Desnahemisfera is a design studio collaborated by Dejan Kos, Damir Islamovic, and Klemen Smrtnik. With a simple and quirky aesthetic to their designs (and even their website), who would have guessed that the process is composed of multiple conversations about the little details. Symbiosis is one of their latest products, which was specifically made for Kolpa, a company specialized in bathroom furnishes in Europe. With the catchphrase of “Coexistance of Waves,” this pristine bathtub shares its figure with a washbasin to form a sleek silhouette. The transition from the tub’s curvy contour to its abrupt geometrical end brings attention to the cantilevered basin on top, creating a harmonized uniform for the design. Not only appealing to the eyes, this hybrid was made to also please the skin — with a button that controls water pressure and temperature, and the ears — with a built-in audio system for one’s favorite music. Technologically advanced and beautiful-looking, to me, Symbiosis is almost a monumental piece of sculpture on its own and a cherish of functional minimalist design.


It is not easy to romanticize veneer, but Netherlands based studio Oato succeeded by designing this minimalist coat stand, aptly called Peel. Created in collaboration with woodworking company Kuperus & Gardenier, the peace makes the best of the material – Finnish birch plywood. Here is how the designers describe their approach: We call our way of design a search for ‘the poetic side of industrial design’. Our goal is to reshape the everyday objects that surround us, by balancing emotion and industry. The Peel coat stand is definitely a harmonious equilibrium between aesthetics and utility. Inspired by the way veneer is created (carving thin strips of wood from a log) we returned the strips to a stem, from which small parts seemed to be peeled to create the coat hooks. I love the fact that the function here arises from the quality of the wood, and because of that, it looks spontaneous and, yes, very poetic.


Nordic Tales, which sounds rather magical, is a platform where designers and products come together under the traditions of Scandinavian designs. While the word “traditions” may throw one off, the home furnishes being produced from the brand are forward, minimal, and modern. That word, however, is a reference to the craftsmanship that comes from the brand’s own joiners. With such a classic way to bring the final designs together, their values are more well-respected. In contrast to the cold weather of the Northern hemisphere, the outputs hold a warmth to them through the colors of wood and light, their quirky shapes, and one’s personal customization. Although established not too long ago, the site is constantly evolving, with Martin D. Christensen winning an award with his table named POET. I especially love the bookshelf called Flip, designed by Jonas Hoejgaard, due to its use of materials (walnut and steel); the stark friction of the two colors simply brings excitement. I cannot wait to see what the site has to offer in the future, and will keep an eye out for more brilliant products.


If Etsy is a bottomless chest of random treasures, Ingleside Pottery‘s products are the ones that I would take back to display in my minimal pirate ship. Based in Ohio, United States, and founded by ceramist Laine Snyder in May 2011, the online shop has garnered a lot of attentions for its minimal way of fusing nature into one’s very own home. Using her passion for birds, plants, porcelains, and the classic spinning wheel, the designer created products that both bring ease to the eyes and move along with modern aesthetics. They vary from hanging planters and bird feeders to household appliances. The dedication towards craftsmanship is apparent through the seamless appearance of these cute potteries. I enjoy the subtle contrasts between the white shells and the earthy colors of their contents, the smoothness of the porcelain against the rougher textures of plants and grains; there’s a beauty in those simple differences. Photos Courtesy of Ingleside Pottery.


This beautiful collection has been created by Netherlands based designer Benjamin Vermeulen. Called MAG (Magnetic Assisted Geometry), the line consists of three flat-packed pieces that can be assembled with magnets without the use of tools. The furniture, made from high-quality steel and wood, snaps together without any effort. Here is how designer describes his vision: My goal is to design for people. But that doesn’t necessarily mean mass production, I rather design something amazing than have something mass produced. Another goal of mine is to make simple designs that people instantly understand how to use. Another interesting aspect of this collection is the fact that it is customizable. The cabinet allows you to to select components based on the configuration you need. You can change front, select number of shelves, attach extra elements and so forth. And you can take everything apart in seconds for storage or transportation. A nice idea for a nomadic lifestyle.


Cowrie Chair is an elegant and attractive design inspired by the concave lines of sea shells, being its curvilinear shape possible after an extensive research and innovation process that combines handmade and digital tecnology. The result is a brilliant single surface monocoque fold formed in Ash faced plywood with either a natural or ebonised finish, something that also gives it a great feeling of contuinity and simplicity. Cowrie Chair is part of the Cowrie collection that includes an elegant rocking lounger too, all designed and developed by Brodie Neill, the creative director of Made in Ratio, a new brand launched this past April in Milan.


Vessel must be one of the most relaxing bath tubs I have ever seen! Struck by the synergy between the shapes of a hammock and a bath tub the founders of SplinterWorks, Miles Hartwell and Matt Withington, were inspired to create an engaging and inspiring furniture piece for the bathroom. Or as they describe it themselves “a piece that would provide the ultimate vehicle for total escapism.” Elevated above the floor, Vessel, made of carbon fibre, is a real eye-catcher with its smooth curves. The bath tub is filled using a floor standing, stainless steel, tap and the waste water released through the base into a floor drain. Apart from black, Vessel is also available in red, blue, yellow, pink, bronze and pure silver.


26 year-old Guilherme Wentz is a furniture designer based in Brazil. With an amazing background of awards-filling history, he recently released a series of wooden pieces called Gambito, consisting of a sideboard, cupboard, and bookcase that balance on minimal structures. There is something very poetic in a mass lying on a fragile support to withstand gravity. While that physical condition is a given, the physical appearance of these furnishings is customizable — giving one the ability to make this series a truly unique and personal possession. I especially love the cantilevered sideboard for its asymmetry and its push for imbalance. The concept is not new to architecture, but can be to furnitures to test the limit of functionality. Simple and daring, the Gambito Collection challenges its users to reevaluate the stronghold of structural proportions, as well as the direct translation of that into minimal designs.


Heart of Gold is a new edition of the stunning concrete kitchen line we featured in one of our previous posts. Designed by Martin Steininger and Michael Paar, Heart of Gold adheres to the same minimalist principles as its predecessor. The seamless look is reinforced by several new elements – hidden water outlet in the sink, magnetic drawer partitions, ceramic hobs visible or hidden by an automatic panel. I love that in spite of its technological sophistication, the piece looks austere and uncluttered. All elements are modular and can fit together in various combinations. The kitchen can be made from three materials – grey or brown concrete, ceramic and natural stone.