Decoration + Design & Furnitex : The whirlwind visit...

As I mentioned in the last post we just moved house - although it was within 3 minutes drive it was still a monstrous task. There are still boxes in odd places and stuff that hasn't yet found a home and I am still working on the dining room forgive me if I haven't got back to you as soon as I promised with more on D+D/Furnitex.

My visit to D+D was a whirlwind to say the least but I have a few highlights that I took the time to document. Unfortunately I didn't make it to Design:Made:Trade but I am hoping that a good friend may share her views on that soon so stay tuned.

One of the first things that caught my eye was the chair from View Furniture [above] a baroque inspired detailed arm chair. At first I was curious about the way the frame appeared to be separate from the upholstered seat and back, I then noticed the swivel base - tacky or clever? I found it amusing enough to be clever but wasn't sure I could think of an appropriate place for it, however their furniture is well designed and certainly worth a look. Another bonus is they are designed and manufactured in Australia.

Globe West was another furniture company that caught my eye, this time it was more about the stand design than the furniture - which is lovely - but I really loved the details they put into the design of their stand. The newspapers that wallpapered areas were of an asian origin and the stand encompassed you from both sides as you walked through, connected by the lattice like ceiling. It stood out as one of the best stands at Furnitex.

I have to admit it helped that they had featured one of my favourite things - the hanging origami drakes - I'm sure you've heard me mention more than once my love of the origami inspired element!

An area of particular interest was the Sampling Future Materials section. The area featured fabrics for interiors from both the Belgian Decotec and Australian companies. Surrounding this area were 3 installations.

Above was the collaboration between ITN architects, Australian Composites & The Specialty Group. The 'Libre-Pod' both a library and a lounge, is inspired by the Libra scales representing the perfect balance between work and recreation. The casing of the pod is a light cured resin impregnated fibre-glass from The Specialty Group. Space Age indeed!

I love a dino design - this one was created with Woven Image's Echo Panel. Developed in collaboration with Middlegrey and fabricated by Like Butter, 'Velociraptor' is a fun and unexpected way to use the panel material.

'Designing Miss Daisy' used recycled & recyclable thermoset polymer material to create an art type installation. The collaboration between Mark Watson, I.N.C Corporation, Aboriginal Artist Development Trust & Australian Rubber Matting Products was an interesting one but with nice results. I liked the individual items but would have like to see a more creative way to display them.

Vivid was still the best area within Furnitex, displaying some great talent [check out the link to see this years winners]. Above is the Unconformities Coffee Table by student Jessica Shannon of Central TAFE. The table is expandable and cleverly designed for small spaces.

Designer Ross Gardan's company Spaceleft developed the Flat Jack Bookcase - constructed with cardboard [an increasingly popular eco-choice] and designed for short term use. It can be created with a print as seen here [which I liked] or a plain surface. Its quite inexpensive - the plain version starting at RRP $350.

I liked these little stools - the curved laminated timber details in them reminded me of ripples in the sand or perhaps those made in a Japanese dry landscape garden. The Selina Stool is a concept piece by Jensen Ho.

Love to hear what you guys think, leave us a comment! Next Post - the beginning of a series on some Lifeinstyle exhibitors that caught my eye...

Sneak Preview : VIVID 2009 - what's next in design...

VIVID - Vibrant Visions in Design Competition, is showcased at Furnitex an Australian trade show for the furniture & design industry which is also co-located with Decoration + Design. VIVID displays the work of Australias's next generation of funiture design talent with categories of Student, Concept, Commercial & Green award.

I always find VIVID one of the most inspiring areas of the show, you are always bound to see something that is on the cutting edge of design and uses technology in ways you hadn't considered before or is just right on trend. I spy were lucky enough to have a preview of some of the work that will be on display next week so here are some of the highlights...
[image above from lasts years VIVID]

The fluid style of the Ciotala Fruit Bowl almost makes it feel as though there is movement in the metal, hand formed from a single piece of laser cut steel and chrome plated, this object is by Bhaven Chauhan a final year Industial Design student from UTS.

With a futuristic look the Aura Stool by Student Kieran Choy of UTS would look at home in a minimal organic inspired interior. Constructed with Urethane Foam & fibreglass resin this stool is currently a prototype.

Another bamboo construction [it is such a versatile material] the Ellu lamp is a quirky style that manipulates shadow and light with its unusual structure. By Student Paulo Derilo at Central TAFE.

This wall paper has been created with photos of everyday subjects that are transformed into pattern repeats. This one is called Tribal and utilises an image of the Domain Tunnel [an urban freeway tunnel in Melbourne]. I am curious to see this up close. Concept is from SD Kinetic Studios.

An elegant sculptural piece, the Lofoten Lounger is constructed from Bamboo & stainless steel by Riva Limited Edition Furniture. I can imagine this casting gorgeous shadows on a sundeck by the pool...

I am loving anything that falls into the current/future [ongoing] geometry trend - lines, angles, folds and especially oragami inspired structures. There is something about these forms that are so simply elegant and yet bold and strong at the same time. The Origami Design Coffee table by 4th year student Anne Sutton is one of those designs that fits this description. Made from Wrought iron and glass, I look forward to seeing this peice at the show.

More from Decoration + Design / Furnitex and Design Made Trade next week, I will be visiting the show this week in a whirlwind in between moving house, once I am settled into the new abode I will make sure you get all the highlights from the design scene in Melbourne this week.

If you are in Melbourne be sure to Visit Decoration + Design / Furnitex & Design Made Trade this week from Thursday - all the details are here.

Trends Milan: Candy anyone?

More on Milan! Colours that looked like they belonged in a candy store were right at home this year. Brights took on a more sweet appearance ranging from pink and mauve to yellow and orange.

Image above Casamania

Quinze & Milan Make your own furniture stand - promoting their custom production for architects & designers.

Karim Rashid - no surprise in his use of bold colour, I think he may have a bit of a weakness for gorgeous pink shades

Khodi Feiz for Offect - more teeth aching sweetness

Punkalive Avanto Storage units - Love the use of the pale timber with these colours. Punkalive is a brand to watch especially as they are producing quality sustainable products.

Michael Kruijne for Zuiver. I think I had better leave it there and come back to more trends from Milan later. I really want to get my post on DesignEx published - a design trade show that was in Melbourne Last week - I have some great best of show shots for you. Coming soon...[All images via designws]

Milan Furniture Fair : Emerging Trends

Byblos Casa, Atelier Mendini - image via designws

Sadly I was not at Milan last week viewing the amazing collections on display to inspire design lovers such as myself -but I have been scouring the net and the usual sources to see what is emerging. Some new trends are evident and some trends are simply reconfirming what I had already documented in my 2009 trend report. I thought I would share a few inspirations with you...

I have split this into a few posts here is the first -

Complex Simplicity :

Raw timber, muted colour & shades of white, unexpected natural materials, a return to traditional methods or materials for modern objects...

New french brand Moustache (launched at Milan) with the instant table & instant seat chauffeuse by Matali Crasset

Droog Studio, Studio Makkink & Bey

Sebastian Wrong for E&S

Maarten Baas for E&S

Richard Lampert, Marco Deesi - a mid century form often accompanies the simplicity trend

Thomas Eyck, the flax project
There were plenty more examples of this trend (I think its one of the strongest at the moment) but you get the picture!
[all images above via designws]