Droog releases iconic flames

 In the current economic climate, aesthetics have become side-lined by the pursuit of austerity. Droog’s new collection is a campaign for beauty; a range of products that embrace both luxury and practicality. Not so much less is more, as less + more.

The latest in this line is Flames, designed by Chris Kabel. Flames is a refillable gas fuelled table candle with a very recognisable shape. This design is an evolution of the classic gas cartridge holder. It is a pragmatic design, originating from a number of rational decisions and using the same simple and cheap materials as the utilitarian camping stove.  Always dependable, sturdy and practical, Flames still creates an unexpected feeling of luxury.  Chris Kabel states: “I look at things as if they have never been seen before, then I dissect them and, after that, I reassemble them according to my own rules.” Flames is no exception to this process. This product is the perfect synthesis of innate functional qualities with a more decorative outer shell. The raw industrial gas pipes and gas tank are coated white, and their slender shape conjures a romantic chandelier casting a flickering light.

Flames – table lighter is now available at our Droog store in Amsterdam and online at www.droog.com for € 139,- Soon available at resellers worldwide.

My cup of thoughts

my cup of thoughts Drinking coffee is often used as a moment for reflection or communication. By rotating the cup on the saucer, the different word combinations provide “food for thought”. A true conversation piece. As designer Annelys de Vet stated: “They playfully question our changing perceptions of subjects like freedom and truth, inviting the consumer to make up their own mind.”

My cup of thoughts is a product from UP by Droog. Read more.

My cup of thoughts by Annelys de Vet

Q&A with Annelys de Vet, designer of My cup of thoughts

What is the idea behind your design for the coffee cups?
Drinking coffee is often used as a moment for reflection and communication. The English author Sydney Smith mentioned that “If you want to improve your understanding,” you should “drink coffee”. And Sheik Abd-al-Kadir, (10th century), confessed that “no one can understand the truth until he drinks of coffee’s frothy goodness.” Coffee is seen as a symbol for improving our erudition, and futures can be predicted in the leftovers. It’s within this realm that the texts on the cups and saucers provide food for thought. They playfully question our changing perceptions of subjects like freedom and truth, inviting the consumer to make up their own mind.

How did you experience working with ‘deadstock’ instead of designing a product from scratch?
It was my reason for accepting the invitation for this project. We – in the west – are massive consumers of goods, resources and food. If we want a qualitative future we seriously have to change our consumerism and our mentality. A project like ‘UP’ contributes to this urgent need for change.

Due to an increase in environmental consciousness in today’s society, a lot of waste is recycled or ‘upcycled’. What do you think of this?
This is of the utmost importance, and designers can play a very meaningful role here. They are specifically trained to see doors where other people see walls.

We’ve often heard ‘design can save the world’. Tell me your thoughts?
Of course it’s utterly naïve to believe that design can save the world, and it would be self-congratulatory to think that designers have this ability. Global problems are becoming too complex, layered and with too many irreversible realities. At first it needs a global mentality-change, alternative economies and utopian power structures. But what arts and culture – and thus design – can do, is provide “food for thought” for this changing perception. They can help to shift our perspectives and develop tools to understand our reality and deal with it in a more sustainable way.

New: Fold & file organizer

Fold these stands, cross out the alphabet or numbers and start organizing your books and cd’s as you like.

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Fold & file organizer | € 14,95 | buy now

Renny Ramakers one of the 150 Women Who Shake the World

Art historian turned curator turned environmental trendsetter, Renny Ramakers has put a different kind of green conscience into design with UP, the Dutch innovator’s latest venture. Initiated by Droog, a firm she cofounded that took the design world by storm, UP is a collaborative effort among companies to cut down on waste by using surplus materials to create new goods. The movement’s many partners have created a rapidly growing line of chic “leftover” products from dead-stock items repurposed in inventive ways.

“It is one of the best kept secrets: everyday, tonnes of sellable products are recycled or simply destroyed worldwide, resulting in an unacceptable loss of material and energy. Recycling in practice is down-cycling; many recycled materials are processed into inferior products,” (Renny Ramakers, October 2011).

Read the article here

Spotted in Il Buco

85 lamps and Red revisted were spotted in Il Buco, an Italian restaurant recently opened in Psirri, Athens’s up-and-coming district sometimes described as the Soho of Athens. The restaurant was designed by the Athens-based Sotovikis and is located on the third floor of a neo-classical building, with views of the Acropolis.

Il Buco Italian restaurant in Athens, Greece, featuring 85 lamps

Il Buco Italian restaurant in Athens, Greece, featuring red revisited

Il Buco Italian restaurant in Athens, Greece, exterior

Source: thecoolhunter.net

Dusk/dawn mirror wins best domestic design

dusk/dawn mirror

Dusk/dawn mirror by Minale-Maeda for Droog was named one of best domestic designs in the seventh Wallpaper* Design Awards.

According to Wallpaper: “Eleven major awards have been chosen by our panel of six international judges, but the 60 or so remaining have been nominated and fought over by Wallpaper* staffers and our international network of contributors.“

About Dusk/dawn mirror
Inpired by a reflection on a pool of water of the sky at dusk or dawn—the archetypical mirror—has become the basis for this mirror. Hung one way, it reflects dusk, and hung the other, it is dawn.

About Design Awards 2011

Q&A with Peter van der Jagt

This week Bottoms up doorbell is back in stock after an improved production. We asked the designer, Peter van der Jagt about the design, which he came up with as a student at Hogeschool voor de Kunsten Arnhem.
Bottoms up doorbell for Droog by Peter van der Jagt

Here’s what he said:

When I was studying, a strange thing happened. I actually became tired of design. And I was not the only one.

What’s the use after all, when fashion creeps in? What’s the use in assigning a colour when, before you know it, it is “so last year”? What’s the use in designing a shape if, within two years, it reminds you of something from way back when?

We thought we had the solution: we simply didn’t design anymore. We just had a good idea and prototyped it, without sketching or deciding on colour, shape or other aesthetic characteristics. The prototype thus became the product instantly. After all, if it can be made once by a student, it could be made many times by anyone, right? (Admittedly, in hindsight, this turns out to be a bit naïve).

This kind of thinking drove the design of Bottoms up doorbell. We were concerned with how the product could tell a story—not a fairy tale or a multi-layered, symbol-ridden social statement—but the story of the product itself.

What is a doorbell? Every single doorbell is a collection of electric parts that release a hammer so it hits two objects emitting a two-tone sound, in order to announce the arrival of company at the door.

Most doorbells are white plastic cubes that say nothing. Nothing about the technique, nothing about how they work, nothing about what a pleasant sound is, or how hospitality is expressed.

I designed the Bottoms up doorbell in 1994. 16 years later, the product is still current. Perhaps as a classic, but not out of nostalgia. Of course design, and the thoughts driving design have evolved, and I think for the better. Nevertheless, not wanting to design wasn’t such a bad idea after all.

The Bottoms up doorbell is available here.

Peter van der Jagt

Do good

This holiday, do something good by purchasing Sad hanky by Sofie Lachaert and Luc d’Hanis for yourself or for someone else. With every purchase, € 4,- goes towards War Child programmes to strengthen the resilience of children in (post) war areas.

Sad Hanky

Read more about War Child here.

Sad hanky is available here.