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10 Beautiful Designs - December

10 Beautiful Designs - December

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1 – Grovemade Tabletop Collection

Kevin Do, Grovemade industrial designer describes the tabletop as a ‘vehicle to enjoyment’. This collection is an example of sleek yet practical items, which are aesthetically pleasing and minimalist. This perfectly weighted dishware, is crafted from porcelain and looks beautiful sitting on the collection of wooden placemats which are not a traditional rectangle shape and feature a subtle geometric pattern. All products are made in house, and attention has been paid to all of their pieces, from the curved edged plates to the salt and peppershakers. This is a full and beautiful collection of tableware.

2 – Sennheiser Orpheus System

Sennheiser are known for their beautiful design and perfect sound quality, but this time, they’ve really gone an extra mile and achieved a design, which looks sleek and if I’m honest, I think is absolutely perfect. The Orpheus headphone system is housed in an Italian marble body, which is offered in a range of colours, and offers a new concept of amplification, which combines elements of both the transistor and tube amplifier. No expense has been spared in choosing components fit for this gorgeous design and as a result, not only does the Orpheus offer stunning audio quality, it provides visual quality too!

3 – The Aron Chair

This is a subtle yet beautiful piece of furniture from Mexican artist, Luis Luna of Namuh Studio. Handmade from walnut, this is a gentle construction with sweeping contours and fluid connections. The short back provides the unobtrusive support that you would expect from a chair yet the long legs are typical of stool.

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4 – ELMA

Of course, this list wouldn’t be complete without a lamp! Designed by Tommaso Caldera, this beautiful lamp features a metal diffuser to radiate a gentle glow in the surrounding space. The design draws inspiration from traditional nomadic lamps, creating a simple form. The milled plywood creates support for the lamp in a contrasting natural wood. Available in a selection of colours including dark red and sea blue, this is a gorgeous piece of design.

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5 – ODO

This clever piece of design comes from Brussels based design studio, NAB. Constructed from powder coated steel and solid ash, this interesting design resembles a dragonfly face. The rolling steel tabletop curves under to resemble eyes and the solid ash joins the curves together and completes the face.

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6 - Giàcolu

This is more than just a lamp.  This design comes from Italian Studio, Delaneo Design and encourages interaction and engagement. The user has complete control of the form they wish their lamp to take, and can be adjusted to suit almost any function or aesthetic. I think the beauty in this design, lies within the fact that it compromises of so few elements, that the range of possible shapes are even more impressive.

7 – Hummingbird Bike

Imagine a bike which weighs less that 15 pounds but yet is 5X stronger than steel. Designed by Peter Craciun, this bike is both practical and beautifully designed. Being light weight and foldable means that is ideal for taking on the bus, the train or the trams so is ideal for urban commuters and people living in smaller spaces. The chain tensioner can be removed to make it safer and cleaner so that it won't fall catching on the bikers leg and getting chain dirt on you. The hummingbird bike is a carbon fibre frame which makes it shock absorbent for a smoother ride. Available in four colours and two wheel sizes, this is a practical design, which is also stylish.

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8 – Stop the Time Watch

Swiss company, ‘What?’ recently stopped to think why we keep track of time in the first place. Launched in Brooklyn, their collection has re-conceptualised the purpose of a watch and allows the wearer to ‘stop time’. By stop time, I don't mean in some sort of superhero way, the stopping time feature allows you to send a ‘timestamp’ to a supporting app whenever a noteworthy moment had occurred. Pressing the red button on the watch lets you expand upon the moment which you've deemed noteworthy and let's you add photos or notes etc. This company are essentially reinventing the wheel when it comes to watches. You are allowed five noteworthy moments a month which may not seem like a lot but when you consider how new technology is being integrated into classic designs like the watch, this is a clever new play on an old technology and its exciting to see where it could lead.

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9 – Beeline, Intuitive Navigation

For all the cyclists out here, I'm featuring this simplistic yet beautifully designed navigation system which strips back the tech and makes a design which leaves only the essentials. Based on a compass’ naturally occurring movement, this piece of design lets you find your way to your destination and tells you the distance to go. With an accelerometer, digital compass and gyroscope, this smart little device gives you just the right amount of information for you to find your way home. Waterproof and with a battery which lasts for months, this is such a versatile design which has thought of lots of practical features. Currently funded on Kickstarter!

10 – Pewter Cast Desk

This Pewter desk from Max Lamb is his largest cast to date, and he molded it on a Cornish beach using only a kitchen knife and a metal rod. At 4.30am, Lamb began carving his mold to coincide with the tide, as he knew he needed at least 6 hours to complete his work.  By 10.30am, the Pewter was ready to be melted (which took 30 camp stoves and several assistants). Lamb poured the Pewter into the sand mold and an hour later, revealed this stunning piece of geometric design which is decorated by the raw texture of the sand. 

 

Written by

Katherine Thomson

5 Christmas Gadget Gift Ideas

5 Christmas Gadget Gift Ideas

There’s nothing wrong with being prepared right? 🎄

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1.     Parrot Hydrofoil Drone

This is the ultimate big kids toy! A propeller driven unit sits on top of the body and travels at speeds up to 5.4 knots (6mph), lifting it clean out of the water by about 2 inches! Not only is it water based, the structures can be separated allowing the structure to fly through the air.

2.     Bowsers & Wilkins P5 Wireless Headphones

If this isn’t a good gift, then I don’t know what is, though on the pricier end of the Christmas gifts list scale, I’d save this item for someone you really want to buy for, and not a Secret Santa or something! With no wires, this set of Bluetooth headphones keeps the great sound quality that you’d expect but with the convenience of not getting tangled in cables. The headphones have a 17-hour battery life and are supplied with a USB cable so you can conveniently charge them through your laptop.

 

3.     Classic Blutune DAB /Bluetooth sound system

This gorgeous classic looking radio allows you to surf the airwaves as well as streaming from your own device using Bluetooth! Roberts Radio has a great selection of vintage looking DAB radios, which look effortlessly cool and are beautifully designed. This is the perfect gift for someone who wants a slice of the modern world but loves traditional looking items.

4.     Gameband

This is the ultimate gift for Minecraft players, enabling them all of their created worlds in one place, playable off Mac, Pc or other Linux-based computers. Wherever the wearer goes, they have all of their data with them, ready to play whenever they like. Not only is this a storage band, it also works as a watch and comes in several variations.

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5.     Happy Plugs Sound Piece

Swedish brand, Happy Plugs, have delivered a sleek looking speaker with changeable grills to suit your style and mood. This Bluetooth speaker has two 20W speakers as well as bass vents for when you really want to kick out some bass. This speaker looks absolutely amazing in so many different colours and patterns. I am pleasantly surprised by what a lovely shade the mint green grill is.

 

Written by 

Katherine Thomson

The world of Virtual Reality

The world of Virtual Reality

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Google gave a glimpse into virtual reality when they gave away ‘Cardboard’ at a conference in 2014. Stunned by the simplicity of the giveaway, people assumed it to be a joke. Were they mocking VR giant 'Oculus', or pulling a prank on attendees who were expecting something more along the lines of a free smartwatch? The reality was that Google had just equipped everyone in that room with a device, which would turn their smartphones into a DIY, low-cost virtual reality headset.

Virtual Reality is meant to be a big game changer, likely to have influence over film, gaming, travel, communication and education. VR technology feels very futuristic currently but the era has already begun developing and shows no sign of slowing down. People who try Google Cardboard are never disappointed, and even such a simplistic device, seems to prove to skeptics that Virtual Reality is on the way, and it really will be as good as it says it is going to be.

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Here in the G2 office, we have a couple of Google Cardboard headsets kicking about; the pretty basic app features are amusing enough when taking a virtual tour of museum artifacts or Google street view but are not overly impressive and the novelty soon wears off. That is, until now. If you were feeling underwhelmed by the Cardboard apps, then fear not, as things have started to get a lot more exciting indeed. 

In early November, Google announced that you won’t only be able to use your phone to view the specific VR content, but also YouTube content in new theatre mode. There are so many new free VR offerings out there, which make Google Cardboard much more exciting, it’s just a case of finding them. Available already, are a selection of apps designed to make you feel like you’re walking with dinosaurs, at a theme park, on a rollercoaster or travelling through space. My personal favorite is the Insidious VR app as it is almost like being in a game where you travel through different levels, however it can get pretty scary when you’re on your own with your headphones in.

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Content developers are taking this technology to new levels, allowing users to get up close and personal with Paul McCartney performing Live and Let die in full immersive 3D sound and a 360 degree camera rig or taking a glimpse into the world of watchable VR with developer VRSE who are offering a growing amount of content ranging from on set experiences to documentary material.

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With Oculus Rift expected to launch in 2016, we’ve had a glimpse into the world of Virtual Reality, and it’s likely to live up to expectations. Google Cardboard has allowed the world to see what can be possible with £10 and a smartphone, so imagine what is going to come next!

 

 

 

 

Written by

Katherine Thomson 

 

10 Beautiful Designs - November

10 Beautiful Designs - November

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1- Frame Chair

This gorgeous chair has been designed and made by Dublin based studio, Notion in collaboration with Mourne Textiles. Made from naturally finished, CNC machined ash wood and handwoven upholstery, this design blends contemporary and traditional techniques. I love the curved shape of this chair, and the black legs work beautifully with the outer yellow fabric.

2- Mobi Customisable lamp

I love lamps; though I’m sure you know that from previous months design blogs. The thing I love most about this one is that it’s customisable. Designed by James Dieter, this design explores different dimensions and form. I love the fact it can be reconfigured without tools because it enables the user complete freedom to restyle it whenever they please. 

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3- Ecocapsule

The Ecocapsule is an innovative new approach to living arrangements. With the surge of interest in Glamping, this design addresses peoples desire to travel with their creature comforts. Highly portable this capsule is only 4.5 metres long by 2.25 metres wide and a mere 2.5 metres tall. Perfect for the eco friendly traveller this ecocapsule is more than just a tiny home. The retractable wind turbine and integrated solar panels mean that the pod is designed to withstand adverse weather conditions. I think this is a fantastic design and is the perfect solution for wanderlust travellers and it also has scope to be used as temporary housing in disaster areas.

4- Bender Chair

Aesthetically pleasing and simplistic, this chair almost looks like a doodle with it’s curved corners and single outline. I absolutely love it; I love its reduced form and modern design. Unlike modern office chairs with complex mechanisms for comfort, this chair is designed to support you by bending and flexing to prevent rigid sitting.

5- Thousand Bike Helmet

This is such a sleek looking design. The idea behind this helmet was to design a product that people would actually want to wear, and I think they’ve done exactly that! The Thousand helmets boast rubberized matte finishes in three colours (with a limited edition gold version) and include a magnetic buckle on reinforced vegan leather straps. Through innovative PopLock technology, the Thousand helmet secures effortlessly to the bike providing an anti-theft system. In fact, they’re so confident with their new technology, that if it is stolen, they’ll replace the helmet for free! Available to pre-order now on Kickstarter!

6- Calcarenite Concrete Furniture

You’ll have noticed in precious months top ten design blogs that I’m a bit obsessed with concrete, whether it’s concrete furniture or lighting, I think concrete is pretty versatile and looks great when done well. ‘Calcarenite’ from Italian designer, Cosma Frascina takes on minimal design inspired by Frascina’s hometown of Salento where there is an abundance of stone and mineral deposits. Each piece is completely unique and explores concrete in it's raw form as everyday furnishings.

7- Polite Table Tennis Co

This Ping Pong table is just a bit lovely! Handmade from natural materials such as wood and steel, they are rustic and neutral in colour resulting in a versatile and durable table. Designed by California brand, Polite Table Tennis Co, they offer two models as well as custom options. 

8- Bubble sofas

These fantastic bubble sofas look incredibly comfy. Resembling childlike drawings of clouds, this collection looks both modern and cosy. The colours available are bold and available in grey, yellow and red. From a distance, the upholstery looks like a solid soft layer, but upon closer inspection, it is revealed that there is a mesh layer, which adds even more interest to the design.

9- Fire Vase

The Fire vase from designer Martín Azúa and ceramist Marc Vidal is a beautiful example of a tabletop fireplace. Designed to burn twigs, it is super easy and convenient to use! This fire vase kicks out some serious heat and light - perfect for dining outdoors. Available online in two sizes.

10- Spun Birdfeeder

This birdfeeder is both practical and beautiful. Designed by the sustainable Canadian studio, Urbanproduct, the birdfeeder is handcrafted from hardwoods such as Maple. The design features a top dish for water and a covered dish for seed. The feeder is both weather resistant and safe for birds after being finished with a VOC-free rub.

Written by

Katherine Thomson

Designs for Halloween

Designs for Halloween

It's time to get your spook on, here's 5 points of inspiration, enjoy! 

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1 - DIY Geometric Halloween Masks

Wintercroft sell their masks on their Etsy shop. There’s no two ways around it, their geometric designs look cool. They look different and provide a Halloween alternative to the standard plastic masks adorning shop shelves year after year. The masks require self-printing and self-assembly, which they recommend you do using recycled cardboard and paper. Not only will you have an amazing mask by the end of it, you’ll also have a brilliant Halloween costume and will have had hours of fun making it.

2 -    Forms in Nature Lightshade

This beautiful lightshade transforms the space, adds character and casts bold shadows to the walls and ceilings. I’ve chosen this for the Halloween list because those dark, twisting shadows remind me of Tim Burton's spooktastic film, Sleepy Hollow.  The Forest, which is cast upon the walls, consists of gnarly trees and winding branches, perfect for a Halloween theme but also all year around, as this is such a beautiful piece, which looks fantastic with the light on or off.

3 – Piero Fornasetti Plates

These wall plates are both beautiful and a little un-nerving. Italian artist Piero Fornasetti designed the plates based on operatic singer Lina Cavalieri. When asked what inspired him to create more than 500 variations on one face, Fornasetti replied, “I don’t know, I began to make them and I never stopped”. Working in black and white with occasional flashes of colour, these wall plates would be a beautiful addition to a gothic themed Halloween.

4 – Anatomical Heart Vase

This Anatomical Heart vase features the words ‘Til Death Do Us Part’ in a scroll across the centre. Bright red with ventricle holes for your flowers, this vase would make the perfect centerpiece on a table filled with Halloween treats and other spooky decorations. This website is fab for décor which is perfect all year round, and fitting for Halloween themes too. Other points of Halloween interest include the faux animal skull, the wing display dome and the child ceramic vases!

 

 

5 – Faux Taxidermy

It’s not all ghouls and ghosts at Halloween, sometimes it’s good to get that eerie feeling and channel ‘The woman in black’ set. If you want to fully commit to a Victoriana style Halloween theme, then you’re going to need to add some antlers to your walls. This is where faux taxidermy comes in. There’s so many amazing designs out there from the realistic fox from Broken Hare, the glitter antler moose head from Wall Charmers or half create your own with Elkebana!

 

 

 

Written by

Katherine Thomson 

10 Beautiful Designs - October

10 Beautiful Designs - October

1. Times 4

Inspired by a pie chart, this piece designed by Gonçalo Campos for French brand Polit, is a highly organised piece of furniture. The table is divided into four colour coded interior sections, which are exposed by rotation. The tabletop and legs are made from natural finished beech wood, and the quarters and frame from white metal.

2. YC1 Chair

Japanese designer, Mikiya Kobayashi has designed a chair that is both sleek and functional. This aesthetically pleasing piece is made from rope and leather woven into a wooden frame, making it entirely unique. This is a beautiful piece, which is functional and still offers a balance between comfort and modern design.

3. Winnie

Winnie, a lighting concept by Finland based Nikolo Kerimov, is a lovely design inspired by honey pots in Winnie the Pooh.  This clever collection has several different sized pieces, each with different cork sizes and one with a cork light fixing too. 

 

4. Reverb Lamps

Crafted entirely from metal except the cord, Alessandro Zambelli draws inspiration from carbide lamps. Available in red, beige and turquoise, they are a contemporary take on an antique lamp.

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5. Aeris Air Purifier and Planter

This dual function air purifier and planter from Lab Fabrici purifies the rooms atmosphere with a high speed fan and a terracotta-coloured substrate of expanded clay and activate carbon. This piece is in two parts and the aerated planter sits perfectly in the base. Stylish and practical, I’m a big fan of this!

6.  Gabbia Lamps

Portuguese designer, Rui Pereeira and Japanese designer Ryosuke Fukusada envisioned these ‘inverted basket’ shaped lamps. Perfect for both ceiling and table, these lamps are designed to be used with LEDs. Handcrafted in Kyoto by a studio that works predominantly with bamboo, these lamps combine bamboo weaves and colourful acetate.

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7. Toon Chair

This chair combines characteristics of other projects from Redo Design Studio. Created by Polish designer Radek Nowkowski, this chair continues the brands style in a beautiful way. Joined together with metal fittings where the legs meet the bent wooden back, the result is a very light piece, both physically and visually.

8. Buster Bulb

The Buster bulb by Buster + Punch is the worlds first designer LED bulb. I’m a big fan of this new collection and love how eco friendly it is. This bulb uses just 5% of the energy burned by a conventional bulb and promises 10,000 hours of life, which means it could last around 5 years.

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9. Skurniture

Skateboard inspired furniture by California based studio, Swenyo. I’m a really big fan of this design! It’s so simplistic yet looks so good and I especially love the black skateboard with white legs combination. This is a fantastic design because you can buy the legs separately and play around creating your own designs perhaps upcycling an old deck of your own.

10. Stick Modular Shelving

This entirely customizable shelving creates storage for whatever you need it for. Whether it’s clothing storage or for displaying your items and ornaments on, this shelving creates a sleek solution. Designed by eco conscious, Jan Plecháč and Henry Wielgus, the construction is completely organic which they classify as “Soft Minimalism”.

Written by

Katherine Thomson

 

Designs in the Developing World

Designs in the Developing World

1. D-Rev Brilliance

Newborns are often born with jaundice, as the various systems designed to remove bilirubin from the body are not yet developed. There is often no cause for concern and often resolves itself naturally. However, over 6 million babies require treatment for severe jaundice each year, particularly in the developing world. Without receiving the treatment they need, resulting consequences can include disability or death. D-Rev’s ‘brilliance’ range are all low cost, high quality phototherapy devices, using UV light for treatment. So far, 1,168 units have been installed in 15 countries, 83,388 babies have been treated and 70,288 of those would have otherwise not received effective treatment. It is hoped that these machines will provide accessible treatments, significantly reducing the number of deaths and disabilities resulting from untreated jaundice.

2. Mazzi

Global Good – collaboration between Bill Gates and Intellectual Ventures have created Mazzi to help smallholder dairy farmers and other low-income stakeholders in the dairy business to maximize their yield by reducing spillage and spoilage. The container is durable, and is made of food-grade plastic which can be dropped without breaking. The milking funnel attaches to the top of the container to help farmers capture the milk, identify signs of udder infection and reduce contaminants. Thanks to the sieve-like opening on the funnel, spills are limited if the container is kicked over or dropped.

3. Arktek

Vaccines are sensitive and can easily spoil if not kept at a precise temperature from manufacture to use. Preventable deaths are due to life-saving vaccines being hard to come by. Rural areas such as Sub-Saharan Africa are the most difficult to reach with vaccination due to poor infrastructure and unreliable power. Working with Intellectual Ventures Global Good program, scientists and engineers at IV lab have developed a device, which can keep vaccines cold with no need for external energy. The device, Arktek, can keep the vaccine at the appropriate temperature for a month or more by using insulation techniques similar to those used to store cryogenic fluids.

4. Pelican - Newborn Pulse Oximeter

In 2014, a campaign on Indiegogo raised over $20,000 to launch the creation of Pelicans pocket pulse oximeter, a tool to diagnose babies with pneumonia. In 2013, a UNICEF report revealed that the leading cause of child death worldwide is pneumonia. 1 in 4 childhood pneumonia deaths are newborns and newborn technology has been overlooked. A pulse oximeter is the best way to identify newborns in need of oxygen but most pulse oximeters are unsuitable for tiny newborns. Currently in design, here is an opportunity for a durable, affordable pulse oximeter capable of saving many, many newborn lives.

5. SALt – Sustainable Alternative Lighting

The majority of the 7000 islands in the Philippines don’t have access to electricity. SALt wants to eliminate the cost in areas that rely on kerosene/battery lamps and candles as their main sources of light. Powered by 1 glass of water and 2 tablespoons of salt, this product is environmentally friendly and safe to use, as there are no components that risk fire safety. Easy to use and if being used near the coastline, ocean water can also be used to power the lamp. This cost effective light source used for 8 hours a day with give a product life of 6 months, and using this as an alternative light source will increase product lifespan to 12 months or more.

6. Evaptainers

Electricity free mobile refrigeration technology to keep food fresher for longer, using only the sun and water. 45% of produce grown in Africa spoils before it reaches the consumer; the purpose of this product is to provide affordable refrigeration solutions to address the needs in developing markets. As this refrigeration runs only on sun and water, it is dependable without relying on costly infrastructure. The benefit of this product is that it will help small rural farmers to increase the percentage of their crops that get to market, thus improving their living standards.

7. Lifestraw

Using water filters and purifiers, Lifestraw makes contaminated water safe. Ideal for outdoor activities such as hiking, trekking and camping, this product requires no electricity or batteries. For every Lifestraw product purchased, one school child in a developing community receives safe drinking water for a school year. The ‘follow the liters’ program began in October 2014 in Kenya and provides students with safe drinking water in their schools by using Lifestraw purifiers.

8. SunSaluter

The SunSaluter is a solar panel, which rotates throughout the day to follow the sun. This method boosts efficiency by 30% and is 30% less expensive than conventional motorized solar panel rotators as well as being more reliable and consumes no electricity. Families without electricity often spend 10-20% of their income just on kerosene gas for light at night, which is both dangerous and inadequate and over 750 million individuals lack access to clean water. Combining solar energy with water purification makes perfect sense. The water acts as weight slowly draining through a filter all day, and collecting as clean, drinkable water in a sealed container. As the bottles get lighter, the solar panel rotates, following the sun and increasing efficiency.

 

Written by

Katherine Thomson

10 Beautiful Designs - September

10 Beautiful Designs - September

1. D’Hauteville Concrete Chair

This midcentury inspired concrete chair by Julie Legros and Henri Levallard Boget rethinks traditional chair design. Consisting of steel legs and a concrete seat the chair is being touted as‘surprisingly confortable’. A striking piece which makes a statement both indoors and outdoors.

2. Inactivité

“Inactivity seems to be the disease of today,” observes designer Benoit Malta. Altering the sedentary nature of modern life has inspired the Parisian designer. We are obsessed with this idea of making everything as comfortable as possible, we’ve neglected the fact that it is really bad for us to be less and less active. The aim of this chair is to create a ‘bearable discomfort’ used to put the body in motion and out of the stationary poses which most of us sit in all day.

3. Concrescence Concrete Planters

Iowa based designer Vakhtangi Darjania has created these efficient concrete planters inspired by his native home, Tbillsi, Georgia. Made from a pourced cement sand mix and birch plywood, these planters have character and raw simplicity.

4. Inside out table lamp

Okay, there’s a lot of concrete this month, but it’s all justified because each of the the designs are really beautiful. This design is no exception. This concrete structure lamp comes from Milan based Daevas design and features a brass lampshade. The design, which is based on the Fibonaci spiral, looks solid from one side however when viewed from the other side, the concrete reveals a completely new shape.

5. E1 4K Video Camera

This is a fantastic design for anyone out there who wants a professional camera but wants to ditch the bulk. Sitting somewhere in the middle of professional gear and portable HD/4K, the E1 is the smallest 4K professional camera with an interchangeable lens system.

6. Seletti Monkey Lamp

If you’ve read my previous months top ten design blogs, then you’ll know I’m a BIG fan of lamps and the Seletti Monkey lamp is not getting left behind. The range designed by Marcantonio Raimondi Malerba comes in three different poses; sitting, standing and hanging. Made in Resin and finished in white, these monkeys are quirky and contemporary.

7. Marshall London Smartphone

If you only need one reason to love this phone, let it be the fact that it has double headphone jacks. Made for music lovers, this smartphone is way more than a phone; it’s the loudest phone on earth. The London, looks like a classic Marshall amp with the black alligator like texture on the back and has two speakers on the front, one on the top and one on the bottom. There’s no need to scroll through your apps for your music player because a very convenient ‘M button’ requires a single press to provide you with access to all of your installed music players. Take my money Marshall, for the scroll wheel alone, I love it.

8. Wall Elements Birdhouse Collection

Vincent Bos has designed this collection with durability and versatility in mind. The modular system can be uniquely assembled to work in any space and the mount is sturdy enough to be used on a wall or a fence. This playful yet functional design is designed to bring nature into urban spaces.

9. Camp Champ

Camp champ brings the luxury of a kitchen to the raw nature of camping. Austrian designer Franz Moser has designed a product that is practical, yet stylish. The compact box unfolds to provide a bin holder on each door, a flip down counter top, a four-burner gas stove, a knife block, grater, a set of pots and pans, a colander, a plate and spice rack and a set of plates and utensils. It’s basically, everything you could ever need for a gourmet camping trip! Come dine with me - camping edition anyone

10.  Epiphytes – Organic Pendant Planters

Created by Italian studio Dossofiorito, Epiphytes takes its name from a type of plant that grows on the outside of things, such as trees, instead of in soil. This home garden design is intended for use with Epiphytes as it lets their roots hang down, looking almost wild and overgrown.

 

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Written by

Katherine Thomson

Apples big announcement

Apples big announcement

Was it all that we had hoped for?

My personal opinion is that yes, yes it was.

No, we didn’t get an iPhone 7 that some people thought we would, and we don’t have a screen which stretches from corner to corner or touch sensitive volume controls, or an iCar or an iPad the size of a car door (I digress) but what we do have, is exciting.

We probably got a bit ahead of ourselves with all of that anyway, so let’s put on the brakes and take a peak at what the new announcements actually were.

iPhone 6S & 6S Plus

·      12MP Camera

·      5MP Facetime

·      4K Video

·      Live Photos

·      3D touch (which looks super cool)

·      64 bit A9 chip

·      Advanced fingerprint sensor

·      Faster 4G and WIFI

·      iOS 9

·      A new colour (rose gold – little bit iffy on this, wish they’d just bring back pure black)

 

iPad Pro

·      A9X Chip

·      Two app multitasking

·      Four new high fidelity speakers

·      Smart Keyboard for iPad

·      Apple Pencil (Yeah, a Pencil… I’ll tell you more in a bit)

·      Touch ID

·      12.9 inch screen

 

The Apple pencil is a lot better than it sounds, I promise. So, this is for those of you out there that have been using the iPad and thought, I wish I had more precision. It’s true; sometimes we need the precision that our rounded fingers aren’t capable of. Even if it’s not precision which you’re after, the pencil is capable of so much more – reacting like a regular charcoal pencil would to pressure and tilt. With virtually no lag, you can take creative charge of what you want to create, and with a 12-hour battery life, you can keep creating for hours. 

 

Apple TV

·      Games and apps for TV

·      Redesigned interface

·      Siri Remote

·      Touch Surface Remote

All in all, it was a good, strong announcement from Apple with plenty to look forward to and some fab new tech coming along!

 

iPhone available 25.09

iPad Pro available in November

 

Tweet us, let us know what you think!

Written by

Katherine Thomson

 

Bringing Ideas to G2

Bringing Ideas to G2

If you are reading this blog page right now, then chances are you have heard of G2, and are aware that we offer Design & Development services as well as a few other things. 

I am Ed- I head up the design process and am here to briefly summarise how we go about turning your ideas into tangible products, nice to meet you. 

We offer all kinds of services in every aspect of the design process, each case will be and always is different, but ultimately our end goal is to help or advise you on how to develop your ideas. 

We understand more than most that an idea can come in many forms. Sometimes our clients have a tightly squeezed brief that a product has to fit, others have used their expert knowledge in a particular field to identify gaps in the market and want us to do the rest. 

I’ve got an idea I would like to develop, what’s next? 

Of course all the best design projects start with a pot of freshly brewed coffee and a friendly chat. At this stage we are looking to loosely establish a brief- so who the product is for, its purpose, context and the deadlines which our deliverables would need to meet. 

We would look to understand exactly what you want from the project, do you just wish to see some concept ideas or do you need a product taking to be production ready? Do you have the technical basis of a product, but need this translating to a CAD model and/or 3D render? Do you have the core electronics/ mechanical design working but need a package which is fit for purpose and looks cool? These are just a few scenarios which we are very familiar with.

Then we can work with you to establish which tools of the design process we would need to use- for example sketching, CAD modelling, prototyping and rendering are the most commonly used. These tools will be detailed in future design blog posts from the team very soon. Product design is not a linear process, so we expect to use any and/ or all of our processes to reach your deliverables. Some clients like to give us their brief and leave us to it, others like to get involved in the design process themselves and share their input, being flexible allows us to adapt. Once all that has been established, we can begin turning your ideas into reality.

At G2 when we are not working on client projects, we are coming up with ideas ourselves and testing and developing them in house. We work across all sectors, for example we currently have a couple of live agricultural projects, but then we also have consumer focused electronics projects ongoing as well. Keeping our work varied means that we learn about new technologies all the time, and the research we do from contrasting projects often informs others in unexpected ways. 

So regardless of how developed your idea may be, its industry, its technical background- we can help. We are ultimately here to help companies profit from innovation and to make that process as easy and as pleasurable as possible.

Written by 

Ed Jones

If you think we might be able to help you, please get in touch. 
Call 0115 824 0402 and ask for Ed. 

Thanks for reading, and stay tuned for more blog posts from the design team…

10 Tips for Design Students from a New Industrial Designer

10 Tips for Design Students from a New Industrial Designer

About 6 months ago, I had the realisation that after four long years, I would finally be graduating. Not returning to university after summer, or ever; I was being kicked out into the big wide world. And I would (hopefully) be working for someone who wanted me to design things. But who? How do I find these mystical companies that wanted to employ me? How do I make myself stand out from the sea of new design graduates? And how do I make the jump from being a student designer to being a proper designer with a proper job and a salary and all those grown-up responsibilities?!

1. Be organised

Write a CV. Build an online design portfolio. Get a LinkedIn account. You never know when opportunities will pop up, and you want to be able to easily send your information over and look professional and prepared.

2. Get some experience

Obviously, experience looks good on your CV. But make sure it is experience in a related industry, otherwise you won’t be exposed to the real-world design processes that university simply cannot teach you.

3. Network

Get to know as many companies as possible, and you never know what opportunities may arise. Speak to lecturers, family friends, go to networking events, and create opportunities yourself. I organised a mid-year exhibition where final year students could showcase their work, and companies were invited along to meet the fresh talent - and that’s how I first met Ed and Alex!

4. University teaches you the technical skills you need

But its entirely up to you to use these skills to experiment, learn and be creative. The worst thing you could ever do is limit your design because you’re not sure how to make it on CAD. 

5. Practise your weaknesses

If you struggle with sketching, follow some industrial design sketching boards on Pinterest. If your weakness is CAD, find online tutorials. Identify what you struggle with, and improve on it.

6. Time scales are different

Projects in industry may need to be turned around in days, rather than weeks or months like student projects. Learn how to work quickly.

7. Learn to make decisions

You’ll arrive at a far better design in the same amount of time.

8. Share your ideas

Collaboration isn't encouraged at university — lecturers want to see what you can produce as an individual. However, industry is all about teamwork, so find a way of sharing your ideas, receiving criticism and editing your design based on feedback.

9. Work hard on each project

You’ll only get out what you put in. You’re not going to change the world with every design, but work hard and you’ll learn something new from every project, no matter how mundane it seems.

10. Stay relevant

You might not be lucky enough to land a job before you graduate. But while you’re living back at your parent’s house with time to kill, do something productive. Practise sketching, catch up on design-related news, and update your website and CV.

Hopefully, alongside a big dose of hard work and talent, this advice will help you in landing your first real-life design job. Those tips have helped me get the most out of my university course, progressed me as a designer, and helped me get this wonderful job as an industrial designer at G2 Innovation! (And I'm still here 7 weeks on, so I'm hopefully doing a few things right!?)

Written by

Emma Hartley

10 Beautiful designs - August

10 Beautiful designs - August

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1 – Full Grown - Square Pendant Lamp 

I chose the square pendant lamp because I think the shape is very unique, though in all honestly I could have chosen any product from the Full Grown range, as each of their designs is exquisite.  The nature of Full Grown is just that. Nature. This art form challenges how we create. By making their products from manipulating living trees into their desired shapes, their work requires months and years worth of dedication, making it a slow but beautiful process. 

2 – Davide Oppizzi – Floor lamp large square

Available in three sizes and shapes. These LED lamps are a metal structure finished in real wood oak or white Carrara marble. This lamp is part of the 'eau de lumière' collection which takes it's concept from luxury perfume, playing on the shape of perfume bottles.

3- Gianluca Mingolla  - The sound of technology

This particular piece, not only is it a beautifully designed table, it also pays tribute to the process used to construct and make it. Mingolla recorded the sound of the CNC machine cutting a prototype and converted the sound waves into an image, which he transferred for the CNC machine to follow accurately for the tabletop. 

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4 – Danielle Ragazzo – Liaison Table

This 15mm pane of glass tabletop is supported by angled thin stainless steel legs, which resemble sewing pins. A different colour powder-coated steel base resembling the ball-head of a sewing pin supports each ‘leg’. This is a beautifully designed piece with careful consideration for both practicality and style. 

5 – Patricia Urqiola – Shimmer 

By employing an iridescent multi-chromatic finish, Uriqiola adds an ethereal element to her ‘shimmer’ collection of tables, mirrors and shelves. Refracted hues and tones transform the pieces when exposed to different lights or when viewed from different angles. This is a gorgeous collection of work and definitely couldn’t be left out of this list! 

6 – Anne Boysen – Toward, Balanced Blue 

This sofa is not just a sofa. This is an Anne Boysen sofa. Joking aside, this really is a beautiful design which allows the user to choose their seating style. Whether that be a chaise lounge, an armchair or a traditional two-seater sofa based on the position they want to sit/lay. The clever design of this sofa makes it a versatile piece of furniture while still being aesthetically pleasing and functional. 

7 – UNSTUDIO – Standtable  

This table addresses an important fact: That standing is better for us than sitting. The design of this table is perfect for arranging your office equipment to be at a level that suits you thanks to the surface being on three different levels. The standable is practical with built in shelves and is aesthetically pleasing

8 – Dackelid Form – Wooden Cloth

Effortlessly combining form with functionality, the table is easily adjusted in size to accommodate the space available. Designed like a caterpillar track, the table extends by using the beams stored beneath the top pushing the batons one by one, creating a larger surface.

9 – Revés Chair 

The perfect chair for cocooning into your own space, and then also for bursting back out if you want some company too. This chair looks both cosy and comfortable and combined with two-tone quilted fabric by Trevira, the back of this chair can fold up and down effortlessly, similar to a shirt collar. Currently in development with an unmentioned furniture company, this chair should be available for sale in the future. 

 

10 – Sebastian ErraZuriz – Wave Cabinet

This fluid cabinet has transformed a traditionally functional piece of furniture into something that delicately opens in a non-traditional way. This cabinet almost looks like a sculpture yet constantly able to change it's form and shape. As beautiful and delicate as this is, I can’t help but feel that all it would take is for my cat to jump on top of it for chaos to unravel. Overall, a very gorgeous piece, and a strong contender for my favourite on the whole list. 

 

FIND OUT HOW WE CAN HELP MAKE YOUR PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT MORE PROFITABLE

CALL US ON 0115 824 0402

Written by

Katherine Thomson