Ombré refers to fabric that has been dyed in a variety of ways: dip dyeing, color bleeding, or gradated dyeing, it’s an effect usually achieved by hand dipping fabric in dye so that it gradually goes from light to dark, or sometimes from one color to another. Controlled seeping of dye creates amazing textures in the fabric. The less controlled dyeing gives the sense of a handmade piece of textile with unique pattern.
Established & Sons have produced and ombré version of the Bouroullec’s Quilt chair.
At Milan Salone del Mobile Moroso showed a very controlled Ombré sofa that graduated from a light to dark pink. Incredibly confusing for the camera to shot.
Flip Flap Fold by textile designer Margrethe Odgaard. The dye seeps across the folds of the fabric enhancing the effect of the delicate origami folds
Textile designer Josefine Wiel Fredén produces some beautiful fabric that has less control than the previous examples. The dye is allowed a little more of a free run. Huge patches of indigo and scarlet dyes have been manipulated just enough to create a repeat pattern; but not enough to feel mechanical produced. Each bolt of fabric is unique.
Alexa Lixfeld’s Cashmere throw uses the old method of tying the fabric to prevent the dye taking in those areas.
Underfull Tablecloth by Kristine Bjaadal At first glance the tablecloth appears to be an ordinary damask tablecloth. Its only when the cloth has been used and abused that the pattern really forms. “Some stains , like red wine, are hard to clean, but since they will be formed as figures, the tablecloth will not look stained. The figures will form a pale, shadowy pattern that will grow as the tablecloth is used over time. This creates stories and can contribute to giving the tablecloth a sentimental value.”
With a continued sense of doom and gloom hanging over the world we need a shot of colour to lift the mood. I’m not advocating a riot of colour (best not to encourage that kind of behaviour especially here in London! shhh! nobody mention the riots….) What we can do is introduce a kaleidoscopic piece that add an instant hit of happiness.
Sonya Winner’s After Matisse rug is inspired by the paper cut outs of the painter. Blocks of colour are overlapped like floating pieces in a kaleidoscope; the thick New Zealand wool pile is hand carved to give variations in depth. Its a beautiful piece that I had the chance to stroke at Super Design so I can personally vouch for its vibrancy and soft touch. You can also read an interview with Sonya on Pop Art Rock Girls blog
Plaid Bench by Raw Edges for Dilmos
“Each of the designs can stand alone however, Raw Edges has made the three benches in such a way that they interlock into one another horizontally and vertically, creating a large rectangular platform forming a vibrant plaid pattern.”
Boca do Lobo’s Pixel Cabinet features 1088 individual triangles of lacquered wood. The pieces have been overlay ed with gold and silver leaf and translucent lacquer applied to give the cabinet a lustrous shimmering finish.
Bashko Trybek’s Color Wheel Clock “A Color Wheel clock provides a new perspective on the way of communicating time. This idea refers to the Sun — the first, primtive clock in nature, reflecting the passing of time. The Sun emits light, a spectrum of colours visible while going through a prism. This phenomena was an inspiration for designing the face of the clock. Reading the time from the color wheel clock is simple: red stands for noon, the wheels from biggest to smallest stand, respectively, for hours, minutes and seconds.” I found it a bit tricky to read at first but pop back to his webistie and you’ll see an online real time version.
Bright vibrant colours have also been used in a couple of Hotel refits that have opened up this year. In Paris Matali Crasset has designed the interior for Hi Matic
The hotel contains 42 flexible cabins that allow the visitor to use the space as a home from home. With 100% internet access a memory foam bed that serves a sofa during the day the cabin is designed to change with with your needs througout the day. Each cabin features bright panels of colour with translucent panels allowing the light to filter through.
In Barcelona the Hotel Mimic aims to further enhance your mood with a shot of colour. As designer Xavier Claramunt says “Colours provide a dose of optimism: vibrant colours are capable of lifting the morale as a palette of dull greys is to make it sink. Colours will not raise the economy but they can brighten your mood”
I went to quite a few talks at this years London Design Festival. Its a great way to catch some fascinating insights into the design process directly from the designer and; if you’re brave enough, ask a question or two!
The V&A ran breakfast talks at the Sackler Centre and the first talk of the festival for me was Kiki van Eijke and Joost van Bleiswijk interviewed by Surface Magazine. The talk covered their careers to date from the graduation and early Milan shows up to their new textile collection for Bernhardt Design,which was launched at the festival.
Despite their close connection and showing their work together they sketch out ideas independently before discussing and developing projects. Kiki talking about a room divider and chair shown in Milan a couple of years back. “A lot of people think that the construction, the metal part is Joost’s design but its not; I was drawing it. Its just… I think somehow superficial that people think “oh its metal it must be Joost” but it doesn’t work like that’ Joost “We always see the same films, we have same books I think you can see a sort of wave across the things that we do, it has the same feel “
For the Bernhardt project Joost explained that the project was initially given a working title of “Fun Fight with Fabric” reflecting the conflicting opinions that went into this collaboration.
Joost wasn’t really used to doing patterns so he escaped from the computer making structures from pieces of metal or wood and Kiki would add on to the piece either with stitching or on the computer to develop the designs. I really liked the playful “Fun Fight with Fabric” title and how it describes the process; but from a commercial stand point Workshop best conveys the actual outcome.
The sofa was initally made from themselves but became a part of the project when it became clear it was a great way to show the breath of the collection they had created. “We liked the fact you have a number of different textiles on 1 sofa in different colours ….there are 40 textiles, 5 different textures, 8 designs, and they can all be combined.”
It was also interesting to hear about their new studio in Eindhoven and how space can have an influence on what and how they develop products. The huge new studio was originally a Phillips paper factory building and its scale has an impact on how they can design. At 1200sq metres and 11 meters high,the scale allows many different uses in one space, it also acts as a showroom for pieces that are not out on display or haven’t been sold. It suits Kiki’s play on proportion that runs through her work and the industrial architectural feel to Joost’s.
Kiki also revealed a collaboration with Haagen Dazs for a Christmas cake made of ice cream. Its not gone through the final tasting test yet but I can’t wait to see what it will be like – no pictures were seen so I guess we’ll just have to wait for Christmas!