- 100% DESIGN, 2009
100% Design showcases the best in interior furnishings and architectural materials, bringing together new talent as well as the latest products from established names. Here's our pick of some of the highlights from the show.
Sean Dare launches his first furniture collection.
Sean has more than ten years of design experience for major manufacturers and retailers and has now set up on his own with his first collection. There was a buzz about his stand as buyers lavished praise on his well-crafted designs taking their inspiration from the Japanese katakana script which is more angular than the flowing hiragana or kanji writing. It is used by the Japanese to represent foreign words phonetically and so is the perfect paradigm for Sean Dare's take on Japanese minimalism through a foreigner's eyes. Dare Studio.
Spectacular Lighting from Sharon Marston
Sharon Marston creates incredible fibre optic lightscapes, from cascades of lights mixed with delicate ceramics to wall panels and illuminated furniture. The designs are all handcrafted in their studios by specialist glass-blowers and ceramicists and are much in demand for anywhere from hotel receptions to high end residences that require unique statement pieces with a wow factor. Sharon Marston.
Cleverly concealed audio systems
Hiding home entertainment speakers but still getting maximum sound quality is the holy grail for contemporary interior designers. Amina Technologies have the solution, a panel that can be installed in stud walls or ceilings which vibrates in the same way as acoustic musical instruments. The resulting diffuse source creates a high definition sound field over a very wide area, the room is filled with sound but there are no signs as to where it is coming from and, without visible speakers, the room has a clean, no fuss, feel. For more information go to Amina Technologies.
The other alternative is to camouflage your speakers within another design element of the room. In the picture below, the lamp on the left shows how the product looks while the one in the centre shows the lampshade removed to reveal the high technology built into the space - there is an 80 Watt on board amplifier including a 40 Watt sub woofer plus spatial stereo using Airsound and NXT transparent speaker array. The sound combines extended bass with a crystal clear presence and accuracy. Amplamp.
Bright and fresh wallpaper to banish those recession blues
Originally from Sweden but based in London for more than eleven years, Camilla Meijer's hand-drawn depictions of flowers are both artistic and amazingly accurate and she has wonderful colour palettes ranging from deep sunset oranges to fresh spring yellows.The designs are available as wallpaper, lampshades and cushions. Camilla Meijer.
Light humour from Penelope Batley
Skilled ceramicist and glass worker, Penelope Batley launched her collection of floor and ceiling lights featuring a quirky humorous take on jewellery. Show here are her giant sized earing pendant lights. Penelope Batley.
Stretch your imagination
While there are so many different materials for floors from tiles and natural stone to wood and laminate, the ceiling seems to have been left behind. Now with the advent of stretched PVC ceilings it's become possible to create a modern design statement. The ceilings come in a multitude of colours and can be perfectly flat or shaped into curves and arches.
They have other advantages too, they won't crack, flake or peel and have good thermal and acoustic properties. Creative Ceilings.
How not to waste water
With water being viewed more and more as a precious commodity, Roca has come up with an ingenious concept. The W + W is a combined wash basin and water closet that reuses the waste water from the basin in the WC. And it not only saves water, it save space too! Roca.
Form follows function to the n'th degree
A geometric trajectory like a flowing liquid? Not it's not art, it's a tap that merges the spout, body and handle into one flowing form. It's been designed by renowned architectural designer Zaha Hadid. And like all other Triflow taps it has three internal tubes, one each for the hot and cold water and one extra for treated drinking water that is contained in a separate tube and so cannot be contaminated by the hot and cold. Triflow.
The future is here
One of the most exciting areas in the show was the Electrolux theatre where they showcased designs for the next ninety years. Just as so much as happened in the last ninety years since Electrolux was founded - airplane and space travel, home computers and the internet, microwaves and mobile phones - the coming decades will see unimaginable advances. All credit then to the industrial design student finalists in the Electrolux Design Lab competition for coming up with intriguing concepts. The winners were announced on the first day of the show: the awards went to a teleporting fridge that brings food straight from the farm gate to the fridge, a smart wall-mounted steamer that you pass your clothes through to clean them, a rain water collecting robot in the shape of a small ball that flies off to collect water, purifies the water and pours it into your glass and - the winner - a fish and meat maker the size of a bread maker that grows tissues in a nutrient soup to produce raw edible food on your kitchen countertop. For more information, go to Electrolux Design Lab.
These concepts may be many years away from production, so what can we expect from Electrolux in the nearer future? Their kitchen appliance designers talked about moving away from the boxy standardised look towards literally 'thinking outside the box'. More natural shapes, more curves to create a more emotional relationship between the user and the machine. More integration, so that you can buy not several separate appliances but one single appliance with integrated oven, basin and fridge. Also for the machines not just to be connected but to communicate with each other, for example the fridge tells the oven what food it has, the oven searches through its recipe book data base and suggests recipes that appear on the oven's glass door and the relevant cooking times are pre-programmed. Will this take the fun out of cooking? We'll have to see...
For more information about the show or to register to visit in September 2010, go to 100percentdesign.co.uk.
Review of last year's show 100% Design 2008.