Dinosaur Designs – 'Lapis Landscape' Collection

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Dazzling blue is the star of Dinosaur Designs’ new ‘Lapis Landscape’ collection of homewares and jewellery

BY SOPHIE DAVIES

Blue is an incredibly powerful colour, reminding us of the sea and sky. It’s by turns serene, soothing and startling, as seen in the gorgeous new ‘Lapis Landscape’ collection of resin and brass homewares and jewellery by Australian duo Dinosaur Designs.

TOP: Resin ‘Horn’ vase from 2019’s ‘Lapis Landscape’ collection by Dinosaur Designs
ABOVE: ‘Horn’ bangle, ‘Tall Stone’ jug and ‘Large Rock’ cups; ‘Mother of Pearl’ dish; assorted homewares, all from the resin ‘Lapis Landscape’ range

By creative directors Louise Olsen and Stephen Ormandy, the range’s ‘electrifying and intense’ blue designs take their cue from lapis lazuli, a deep-blue rock and semi-precious stone prized since antiquity for its vibrant cobalt colour. Mined mainly in Afghanistan, lapis has been used for adornment on both the living and the dead (it appears on Tutankhamun’s funeral mask) and when ground down its pigment is the finest ultramarine hue, beloved by artists of the Renaissance and Baroque periods. It’s a colour that translates well to contemporary resin, drawing the eye while refreshing the soul. ‘I was inspired by the incredible jewel-like depths of the colour Lapis,’ says Olsen.

ABOVE: ‘Horn’ vase, ‘Small Stone’ jug, ‘Wide Organic Column’ vase and ‘Small Mother of Pearl’ dish; various spoons; ‘Moon’ cheese platter, ‘Stone’ cheese knife and ‘Shell’ spoon

Dramatic blues aside, ‘Lapis Landscape’ features a rich, earthy palette balanced by ivory swirls, with clay hues influenced by the red sands of the Australian Outback and gold tone accents. ‘I was also fascinated by the relationship between the ochre sand tones of central Australia and the creamy white sands of Sydney,’ says Olsen, ‘all of which translate perfectly to our handmade resin pieces.’ Forms are boldly sculptural, with new shapes including the ‘Horn’ and ‘Organic Column’ vases, complementing the classic ‘Beetle’ bowls and ‘Pearl’ dishes. Launched on 11 February, the homewares collection offers a covetable choice of vases, cups, bowls, dishes, platters, coasters, cheese knives and spoons.

ABOVE: ‘Double Circle’ drop earrings; ‘Large Horn’ earrings and jug; ‘Large Circle Drop’ earrings, ‘Horn’ bangle and ‘Medium Column’ vase; ‘Long Flute’ necklace and ‘Horn’ bangles, all from the ‘Lapis Landscape’ jewellery and homewares range

Jewellery spans rings, earrings, pendants, cuffs and bangles. Fresh additions to the range include ‘Long Flute’ and ‘Circle Drop’ earrings, with pieces such as the ‘Horn’ series of rings, earrings and cuffs combining resin and brass.

‘Lapis Landscape’ is available in Dinosaur Designs’ flagship stores in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, London and New York as well as online. Prices start from AU$25 for a resin ‘Shell’ teaspoon, which comes in Clay Swirl, Ivory Swirl and Ivory colourways, as well as that dreamy Lapis Swirl.

dinosaurdesigns.com.au

Photography Victoria Zschommler; Styled by Natalie Turnbull and Heleena Trahanas; Model Alana McCoy

IKEA x HAY Ypperlig Collection

IKEA has teamed up with cult Danish design brand HAY to launch 'Ypperlig', a new collection of beautiful basics

BY SOPHIE DAVIES

When Swedish mega-brand IKEA hooked up with cult Danish design duo HAY to create a new range, we knew the results would be impressive. This week the 'Ypperlig' collection hits global stores, celebrating the beauty of basics, Scandinavian functionality and streamlined, contemporary style. Fittingly, the name means 'extraordinary'.

Inspired by architecture, art and fashion trends, design brand HAY was founded in Copenhagen in 2002, and is helmed by husband-and-wife team Rolf and Mette Hay. Using sophisticated industrial manufacturing processes, the pair design pieces for modern living, with a less-is-more aesthetic that chimes well with fellow Scandinavian homewares giant IKEA. The collaborative collection spans furniture – from a compact sofa and comfy sofa-bed to tables, a bench and decorative wall shelf – super-slim lighting and covetable accessories.

ABOVE: Featuring clean lines, muted colours and Scandi materials, the new 'Ypperlig' collection by IKEA x HAY is in stores now
ABOVE RIGHT: HAY co-founders Rolf and Mette Hay
BELOW: 'Ypperlig' ash table, £150, with vases in green, £12, and brown, £18; Indoor/outdoor 'Ypperlig' chair with armrests, in green and light grey, £40 each; 'Ypperlig' chair with armrests, with dining table and vases, as before

ABOVE: Light grey three-seat 'Ypperlig' sofa-bed, £550, constructed like a pocket-sprung mattress, with cushion covers, £5 each; 'Ypperlig' coffee tables, £35 each, with green vase, £12; Light grey 'Ypperlig' LED table lamp, £35, with built-in variable touch dimmer

Top FizzPicks include the sinuous, indoor/outdoor 'Ypperlig' armchair and chair (moulded in one piece in on-trend green or light grey); the minimal LED table light and floor lamp; three jaunty wall mirrors; a sleek ash dining table and grey-topped birch coffee table; and our favourite design, the curvy 'Ypperlig' vase in a choice of two three-tone colourways (green, blue and grey or brown, yellow and white). A trio of pretty-hued boxes with lids make savvy storage for small items, or for cute gifts check out the graphic candle holder and stationery set. Vibrant cushion covers and throws bring a softer touch (in block colours, with pared-back pattern), and HAY has even reinvented the iconic IKEA bag, updating the weaving patterns and colours. 

ABOVE: 'Ypperlig' candle holders, £3 each; 'Ypperlig' wall mirrors, in white, £20, dark red, £12, and green, £15, suitable for use in bathrooms; 'Ypperlig' cushion covers, £5 each, available in nine reversible colourways with varying patterns, beech stools, £20 each

The duo intended the collaboration to be true to IKEA, with honest, substantial products at an affordable price that would be around for a long time. 'We wanted to do something that was beautiful, well-made and usable,' says Mette Hay. 'Really good products made by IKEA and sprinkled with a bit of HAY'. Get in quick and make HAY while the sun shines!
ikea.com 

The 'Ypperlig' collection is available in selected IKEA stores and online (see regional sites for local prices).

LDF 2017 – Bethan Gray x Shamsian

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Welsh designer Bethan Gray launches new additions to her hit 'Shamsian' collection at designjunction 2017

BY SOPHIE DAVIES

Modern marquetry is having a moment, and it's largely thanks to Welsh designer Bethan Gray, who wowed visitors to last year's designjunction fair when she launched her 'Shamsian' collection of furniture featuring the oft-forgotten craft. For this week's London designjunction 2017 showcase in the King's Cross Creative Quarter, Gray will be expanding the range, revealing gorgeous new monochrome marquetry as well as a stunning marble tea set on her stand at Cubitt House. Yes, marble!

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Inspired by Omani design and architecture, Gray's 'Shamsian' pieces were produced in collaboration with respected Omani artist Mohamad Reza Shamsian and his team of skilled craftsmen based in his studio in Muscat. The handmade 'Nizwa' cabinet, which debuted in 2016, features intricate marquetry on dyed Italian maple veneer, teamed with solid brass. Originally seen in a seductive greeny-blue hue, for 2017 it has been reissued in a more subtle palette running from black via grey to white like a dip-dyed effect. The new monochrome finish was achieved by applying a graduating variation in shade across the cabinet by hand, resulting in an ombre from white to black. The result is super-chic and striking, and will fit easily into contemporary homes.

TOP: Bethan Gray perches on her 'Nizwa' cabinet, part of her striking 'Shamsian' collection, re-released for 2017 with monochrome marquetry
ABOVE: Fading from black to grey and white, the new 'Nizwa' cabinet was hand-crafted using a technique called 'stain shading' with solid brass overlay

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ABOVE: Gray's new 'Dhow' cabinet series takes its cue from Gulf sailing boats, and will also be on show at designjunction 2017
BELOW: The original greeny-blue 'Nizwa' cabinet from 2016, featuring luxe pattern created by inlaying/overlaying solid brass and paua shell inlay into coloured solid wood and maple veneer

Also turning heads for 2017 is the new 'Dhow' cabinet series, sporting a swirly, wavy pattern. "For the Dhow collection, I have taken inspiration from the dhow sailing boats of the Gulf region," says Gray. "Traditional dhows were propelled by large triangular lateen sails made of cotton and sewn together in strips. The sails were bound to the hull using ropes made from coir, which created a unique and textured lineation. This lineation has informed the distinctive elegant curved patterning found on the 'Dhow' pieces.'

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Marble also earns a starring role on Gray's stand, but not harnessed in the typical furniture or surface materials. Instead, she has dared to use it to design her hand-crafted marble 'Victoria Teaset' in a new collaboration with Editions Milano. Consisting of a teapot, milk jug, tea cup and saucer, sugar bowl, cake stand and dessert plate, it's worthy of a place in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Inspired by fine vintage ceramics in the archive of the city's V&A Museum, it features a relief pattern, hand-carved from Arabescato marble by Italian master craftsmen. The fine edging and elegant shape adds delicacy, with a glam touch care of the contrasting brushed brass handle. The best of British tradition meets Italian glamour, ideal for a romantic 21st-century tea date. Now that's what we call a modern ritual...
bethangray.com; thedesignjunction.co.uk

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ABOVE: Launching at designjunction this week, Gray's 'Victoria Teaset' for Italian high-end furniture and objects brand Editions Milano adds marble chic to the elegant tradition of taking tea

Bethan Gray will be at designjunction on stand A7 in Cubitt House, 1 Granary Square, King's Cross, N1, from Thursday 21 to Sunday 24 September 2017. See our home page for ticket registration for the fair which is open from 11am each morning (click here for varying closing times and prices).

IKEA Jassa Collection

IKEA's new limited edition 'Jassa' collection celebrates vibrant South-East Asian pattern and colour, from textiles to tableware

BY SOPHIE DAVIES

Get in a mix-and-match mood as IKEA's new limited edition 'Jassa' collection brings vibrant colour and pattern to your pad. Launched in March for Spring/Summer 2017, the range takes inspiration from South-East Asian crafts, especially Indonesia and Vietnam, from brilliant batik-influenced cotton textiles to curvy rattan loungers and rustic ceramics. The focus is on natural, handmade pieces and organic shapes for easy living, helping you escape the 9 to 5 even if you're just holidaying at home.  

ABOVE: Hand-painted stoneware 'Jassa' plates, from £3 for a side plate, £3.50 for a plate and £9.95 for a serving plate, IKEA

ABOVE: 'Jassa' floor cushions as soft seat, £10 each, with cushion cover, £4; Cushion covers on stairs, from £4 to £7, with flatwoven rug, £65; Rattan sofa, £79, with cushion covers, from £4; Cushion covers on head, £4 each; Rattan easy chair, £49, with pre-cut fabric, £12; Rattan loungers, £85 each, cushion covers, £7 each, and bamboo pendant lamp shade, £15, all IKEA

Maverick Dutch designer Piet Hein Eek is one of the key talents behind the exotic range, which aims to 'turn up the heat' by bringing summer indoors. 'Jassa' embraces light, laid-back furniture, from loungers, sofas and easy chairs to a coffee table and room divider, as well as pendant lights, cushion covers, seat pads, loose fabrics, flatweave rugs, vases and stoneware plates. Savvy storage solutions include baskets, bowls and bags, and there's even a straw hat and wind chime to get you in a tropical mood. Designs also embrace natural materials, such as cotton, rattan, water hyacinth, seagrass, and bamboo.

ABOVE: 'Jassa' armchair with tightly woven seat, £39, and cotton cushion covers, £4 each
BELOW FROM LEFT: The 'Jassa' collection includes bags, £9 each, in assorted colours; Bamboo coffee table, £25, with stoneware side plate, £3, floor cushions, £10, each, cushion cover, £4, and blue chair pads, £5 each; Pre-cut 'Jassa' fabric, £12 each, cushion covers, £4 each, and flatwoven rugs, £25 (back) and £65 (front), all IKEA

Pattern- and colour-clash are part of 'Jassa''s charm. 'There are lots of competing colours: pinks and yellows and blues and greens. To begin with, you wonder how they can possibly work together. But in the end they just do!' says range designer Paulin Machado. Handmade in collaboration with skilled Asian craftsmen, many pieces are also unique. 'Jassa ceramics are all sprinkle-glazed by hand,' says designer Iina Vuorivirta. 'It's not a controlled industrial process so they all turn out slightly different!' While Piet Hein Eek hoped to achieve 'simple efficiency', creative leader Karin Gustavsson wanted to transform familiar hand-woven natural fibre and batik textiles into 'something new and exciting'. We think they succeeded...
ikea.com
IKEA's 'Jassa' collection is in global stores for a limited period only from March 2017. See regional websites for local prices

Mingardo

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Italian metalwork brand Mingardo brings the magic back with a covetable collection of homewares

BY SOPHIE DAVIES

A storage ladder that doubles as a light. A bike stand that wouldn't be out of place in a church. A fruit bowl that looks like a cool car part... There's an element of surprise about Italian brand Mingardo, which has curated a collection of covetable metal homewares with a dash of magic. 

Based in the small, historic town of Monselice, near Padua and Venice, Mingardo's back story is intriguing too, with this metalwork company revived by Italian welder Daniele Mingardo in 2013. Once the 40-year-old family firm focussed on traditional metal pieces, but son Daniele saw an opportunity to combine time-honed skills with more contemporary forms, inspired by his time in the workshop where he started aged 18. 'My father always told me, "If you need something, do it with iron!" The passion for iron and the concreteness of things drives me.'

ABOVE: Barbara Schweizer's iron 'Scaltra' portable clothes or towel rack for Mingardo, backlit with atmospheric LEDs
RIGHT: Italian welder Daniele Mingardo founded the new brand in 2013, building on his family firm's metalworks legacy, with collections drawing on traditional methods
BELOW: The elegant brass 'Bi-track' bike stand by Masanori Mori, a simple line with a soft light at the end designed to weather with time

ABOVE: The arcing iron and brass 'Centro' table, and brass 'Separè' multi-use rack, anchored at the base, both by design duo Omri Revesz and Damian Tatangelo

The result is a compact collection of luxe, hand-wrought furniture, lighting and accessories in which metals – from iron to copper and brass – shine, with an emphasis on craftsmanship, details and surface finishes. Produced in Mingardo's own workshop, they're proof that even the most old-school industries can find new direction, even if it's at a considerably higher price tag.

Hand-crafted homewares include small tables and stools, dividing screens and towel racks, and accessories from mirrors to trays, fruit bowls to trivets, and candleholders to charming indoor 'candle lamps'. Sure, the softly illuminated bike rack errs on the side of glamour, but it's functional too. And while pieces may have an industrial look, it's a clean, chic, minimal one, teamed with wood and glass, that's a far cry from the hefty candelabra of yore.

ABOVE: Accessories include the brass 'Elementa' fruit bowl and copper, brass or inox 'Folio' candleholders, both by Antigone Acconci and Riccardo Bastiani; Small furniture spans the 'Fabrica' stool in varnished or burnished iron by Revesz & Tatangelo, and 'Satin' side table by Chiara Andreatti in matt or varnished iron, covered with a brass or copper sheet

Production is local, with a healthy dose of Italian designers on board, from Barbara Schweizer to Chiara Andreatti, Antigone Acconci and Riccardo Bastiani. New-generation global names contributing to the design pool include Japanese-born Masanori Mori, US/Greece-based Objects of Common Interest, Israeli Omri Revesz and Australian Damian Tatangelo (the label has recently been launched in Sydney and Melbourne at Hub's showrooms). So if you thought metalwork was all dodgy old Gothic cast-iron beds, window bars and irons in the fire (literally), then think again. Mingardo is its gleaming modern face...
mingardo.com

ABOVE: Revesz & Tantangelo's dual-purpose 'Separè' design is a portable clothes or towel rack when open or becomes a seductive space divider when enclosed with a light, semi-transparent fabric frame; Made from dark matt iron with brass or copper details, indoor candle-lamp 'Sera Clamp', by Aldo Parisotto and Massimo Formenton, clamps to a table

Mingardo is available in Australia from Hub or see website for international stockists