Minimalissimo


International Royal Architecture, or I.R.A., have designed this bright and modern dwelling in a residential neighborhood in Japan. The home is called House of KKZ, a name derived from its proximity to the Kamikitazawa Railway Station in Tokyo. The structure is a straightforward white cube with cut outs for the windows and doors. KKZ is by no means large, only 110 square meters, but the thoughtful design results in a lovely living space for a family. House of KKZ is a spilt level with several loft spaces. The varying levels allow the space to feel large and open despite the building’s small urban footprint. Small, narrow windows are placed close to the ceiling on each level. These windows bring natural light inside while maintaing the residents’ privacy. White walls and light-colored wood contribute to the sunny feel of the interior. Built in furniture and storage keeps the home free of clutter.


Mathias Hahn as part of London’s Clerkenwell Design Week has introduced the Runcible Collection. Made from solid hard maple, the collection represents a familiar archetype, that is not limited to one specific task and are blanks that stand for a type of application but allow for individual use. Each piece is an implement for use in the home, but the exact functionality is diffused by experimenting with the expected aesthetic and form of such products, leaving them highly interpretive by the user. Hahn is an industrial designer, originally from Germany, and currently working in London where he started up his studio OKAYStudio in 2006. He studied both Industrial Design and Product Design, which has brought him to a body of work involving furniture, lighting and products. He has a natural desire for designing towards use and functionality and introduces me experimental curiosity to his way of working. Through his collaborations, commissioned and individual work, Hahn has remained dedicated to the minimalist principles and themes. The resulting Runcible Collection is testament to his dedication. There is a sophisticated simplicity to the way that he approaches materiality and the production process of remaining true to the materials core beauty. Photography courtesy of...


I was recently introduced to the New Zealand fashion brand, I Love Ugly — specifically their simple, stylish and sublime Samuel Watches Series. The Samuel Watch Series features a simplified design for a timeless touch. The minimal design provides an everyday wear and features a silicon strap for something different, laser engraved logo, hardened glass face and a quality finish. Available in black, grey and mint colours, this affordable series brilliantly captures the essence of a wrist watch with its clean, readable dial, thin time indicators and simplified brand mark. The minimalistic packaging must also be recognised as an example of beautiful design in itself.


The launch of Australian label, Eska Alikai‘s AW 2014 collection by Micha Dyball consists of elegant, minimalist pieces that are indicative of both a confident presence as well as a pragmatic need for comfort. Her minimalist sensibilities are designed into soft leather, eco-friendly tencel, fleece, denim and cotton voile. The details of layering add a lot of personality into the clean, geometric pieces. I found this collection so appealing as each outfit is styled to celebrate the structure and fluidity in the mixed use of material and yet, it is easy to wear. Eska Alikai may be relatively new to deliver a full collection but the label has achieved much success in editorial exposure and already has an e-commerce site. I am looking forward to the next collection already. Images courtesy of Eska Alikai.


On Thursday 12 June, the next FIFA World Cup in Brazil begins, and yes, even on Minimalissimo we have some beautiful design related to it, because I would like to introduce the wonderful website brazilfourteen.com. Brazil Fourteen is a website that shows all the matches of the tournament, allowing you to customize it with any of the participating teams national colors. You can also download a fixture list to be in synchronization with your calendar app along with a limited edition B2 poster, printed in silver on ebony colorplan. Brazil Foruteen is a project by the British design studio Karoshi and the dynamic website was developed by Paul Davis.


In 1958 Achille and Pier Giacomo Castiglioni designed the Babela Chair for the Milan Chamber of Commerce. The brothers created a light-weight chair with minimal clearance. One can easily move the chair, stack it and create long, straight, rows. The Italian contemporary furniture brand Tacchini adopted the 1950′s design in 2010. Unlike the original chair the frame is not made of iron but of Ash timber, available with a white, black, grey, walnut or natural finish. The seat features a removable cover and may be upholstered with fabric and leather. The Castiglioni brothers playfully explored new possibilities for form and created highly functional objects that are as aesthetically satisfying as they were practical. A timeless classic!


Duncan Shotton, a young British designer based in Japan, created this fun and simple timepiece, called Color O’Clock. The all-white disk features a window at its base which slowly shifts through all colors of the spectrum, greens, purples, blues, and everything in between. This changing element allows you to tell the time through hue and tone. I love that the clock itself blends with the wall, only leaving the hands and the colorful window visible. Shotton thinks that this method of reading time is more relaxed and intuitive. The clock base is made of plastic, the hands are made of matt steel. Check out the video to see the piece in action.


A gorgeous white dwelling sits beside the sea on the island of Hong Kong. House W was designed by local Hong Kong architecture firm Cheungvogl. This modern home is constructed to utilize its scenic setting. The home is composed of three tall stories with large windows on each floor. The height and windows allow the residents to gaze out at the sea and passing ships. On the other side of the home doors lead to a garden terrace. Two main materials are used in the interior: rough, exposed concrete and crisp white walls. I love the simplicity of House W. The design is clean and contemporary, a perfect contrast to the lush landscape along the sea. A minimal house in a beautiful setting allows the mind to rest and reflect. House W is the perfect place to escape the busy city of Hong Kong.


Case Scenario’s Element iPhone 5 case is a minimalist dream. Made from plastic the intended aesthetic is to infer a marble stone finish. Available in both a black and white version, this piece is sleek but strong and timeless and elegant. Case Scenario are based on Monaco and create mobile accessories with functionality, design and style in mind with an emphasis on designing and collaborating for the European market, with particular detail to technology. The Element case, is clear testament to that. With the clean lines of the iPhone, it seems almost hypocritical to then adorn it with a contrasting case, which is too often the case. This piece is both well designed and thoughtful. Too rare is to find such a fitting iPhone accompaniment. Congrats to Case Scenario for this. Congrats. Photography courtesy of Case Scenario.


Restored is an Amsterdam based store that collects and sells unique products from talented designers and small labels, offering them a platform to share their products and visions with a wider public. An ode to beauty, balance and originality, Restored features a concise collection of simple, minimalist designs ranging from exquisite garments and accessories to wonderfully handcrafted household items — some of which you may already be familiar with, having previously been featured here on Minimalissimo. And today, we’re excited to share a few more with you. A store I would love to drop in on the next time I’m exploring the streets of Amsterdam, but for the time being, it’s a pleasure getting lost browsing their online shop. Restored are also kindly offering a 15% discount on all products until 30 June, using the code: ENJOYJUNE


Fusing traditional manufacturing with hi-tech fabrics while ensuring that the construction of the garments is not too heavy: that is what Sydney based designers Lyna Ty and Melvin Tanaya of Song for the Mute aimed for while designing their latest collection, GREY. And they most definitely hit the mark. Their darker, more tailored aesthetic goes along perfectly with new, younger, more relaxed sportswear elements. Clients familiar with Song for the Mute can still expect some signature silhouettes, but be prepared for a fresh twist on theses classic shapes. Crafted from virgin wool blends, alpaca and with further development of our paraffin and resin coated fabrics this seasons subsequent construction aims to heighten those tactile sensations. Showing the beautiful Fall/Winter 2014 collection GREY at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Sydney, Song for the Mute further established their point of difference in the men’s market by being particularly fabric-driven. On top of that, American rapper and loyal friend of the brand Lupe Fiasco flew to Sydney to join the show for a runway appearance, highlighting Song for the Mute’s roots in contemporary independent pop culture.


Hey is a design studio working mostly in brand identity, illustration and editorial design. Small in size but very big in outreach, the Barcelona-based studio is much beloved internationally, with a marked a style based on simplicity and synthetis and a lovely use of color and geometry. Verónica, Ricardo and Mikel kindly received me for a brief chat about the process behind their very own brand of minimalist work. When you work with synthesis, ultimately you are seeking a concept, and for the most direct way of translating and communicating that graphically. Their poster work is prolific and one of their favorite ways to distill their graphic philosophy. Using the power of cogency — the capacity one has for remembering something visual — they create work that is immediately memorable. Hey always search for the essence in their concepts, and approach a problem with a methodical functionality that is refreshing and produces results that are so well-crafted they become endearing, like with their latest personal project, Every Hey — a daily Instagram feed where they illustrate characters from pop culture. Every illustration is created based on a modular grid system, without ornament, in an effort to optimize the eye in order for it to see better, a strategy they have applied time and again with their popular Monocle maps. The studio’s...