Stories

24.4.2016
Transit & great comfort!

I love beautiful shapes, but ergonomics are always a determining factor in my designs. With the Transit model we consciously tried to get ’The best of both worlds’. So, in collaboration with the team from Pode, we took great care to create a comfortable seat. We made an armchair for the living room that simply makes you want to sit in it forever.”TRANSIT: hopefully a new classic thanks to its authentic, timeless appeal. Time will tell.

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22.4.2016
Display shelve in asian style

I have always had a great appreciation for Chinese furniture art. The quality of craftsmanship is of an astonishingly high level when you look at those old pieces of furniture. Ingenious in terms of connection and always beautiful in proportion, size and shape. Actually, I always see these wooden designs of cupboards, sofas and beds as a kind of precursor to minimalism. And they still remain inspiring designs for me, even though they are so old. We needed a display for the Dutch brand Pode in the store. Just a nice cupboard to store textiles such as plaids or cushions. Inspired by the shapes of ancient Chinese furniture art, I started creating a folded cupboard made of sheet steel. The cupboard is ready and it turned out surprisingly beautiful. Maybe we should just put it on the market.

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21.4.2016
Fold & folding fabric

With this design I planned to make a sturdy family sofa, one that would be comfy for the whole family. Designed to enjoy, both in terms of comfort and aesthetics. By folding the upholstery fabric and keeping cuts to a minimum we arrived at this innovative timeless sofa. Hence the name: FOLD. I am really fond of those comfortable sofas with cushions, but for this design I avoided the idea of the separate cushions, creating instead a wonderfully abstract sofa unburdened by too much detail.

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18.4.2016
Gloss & the beauty of resin

Gloss has an elegance that can’t be denied. Moreover, every table has a unique natural fingerprint. The lovely grain in the birch tabletop is naturally what catches the eye in these stylish tables. Several layers of varnish are applied to the tabletop, giving it a fascinating depth, gloss and warmth. Gloss is available in four different formats, from salon table to handy side-table. The heights also differ, so you can create the perfect nest of tables.

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2.4.2016
Yukiko, a japanese 'lantern' from laser cut steel

The materials for making a Japanese lantern vary: bamboo, wood, rattan, or steel wire for the frame; paper or silk for the shade. Look for example at the wonderful work of Isamo Noguchi’s light sculptures from the sixties. So why not use the old decorative concept of a lantern and translate this into a modern floor lamp made from folded, laser cut sheet metal? In the old days, lamp-shade artisans competed amongst themselves to produce lamp shades of exquisite beauty, functionality, design, and artistic decoration. This is my 21st century interpretation of the japanese lantarn. With Yukiko I explored the theme between the empowering effects of aesthetics, decoration and translucency.


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17.1.2016
Seasons, tufting layers

My starting point for the Seasons Collection was to break through this idea of a border and extend the carpet’s function beyond a mere lovely print on the floor. By placing various seating elements on the carpet, the individual colour blocks  take on their own application. This carpet invites the user to place an armchair right near the soft, deep, tufted area in the middle, and a sofa or a corner seat around the 90 degree angle in the corner. The other, rounded corners reinforce the various functions. By varying the gauge of the woollen yarns and using different heights, the ‘Seasons’ hand-tufted carpets have been given an added layer of interest.’The Seasons collection has been exclusively designed for Leolux by Claire Vos.

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19.12.2015
Isamo, a candleholder with a twist

From his early childhood, designer Roderick Vos has been fascinated with casting tin miniatures. For his EU candelabra design he chose to execute his two models, a candlestick and a 6-armed candelabra, with the casting technique, but using aluminium as his material this time. In this specific die-casting process, huge metal moulds are preheated and filled with liquid aluminium which has been heated to  800 degrees. This industrial-looking candelabra can be used for both candles or tea-lights. Simply turn the object upside down. -Photography, Marie Cecile Thijs-

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16.12.2015
Tulip vase, a dutch icon

This iconic earthenware vase, called the  ‘MaMa Vase’, is a unique design by Roderick Vos, for which he has drawn inspiration from the wonders of nature. For Roderick Vos personally, the fascinating basic shapes found in nature are often surprising in their apparent simplicity and beauty. The design of the MaMa Vase is inspired by biological structures and cell divisions. The Tulip vase is produced by Cor Unum Contemporary Ceramics. Photography : Marie Cecile Thijs

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15.12.2015
Designing & pressing a bakelite cookie jar

This design derived from my own personal fascination for an old production technique, Bakelite pressing, a combination of industrial pressing and polishing by hand. Antiques enthusiasts still clamour to enrich their collections with vintage Bakelite household items and jewellery. And with its smooth surface this Bakelite jar pays homage to one of the earliest and most adaptable forms of plastic. It is made by one of the last few existing Bakelite manufacturers in the Netherlands, called 'De Bakelietfabriek'. Beyond being as beautiful as it is useful, this 21st century Bakelite jar will lend a timeless quality to your home and has the potential to become a new collectable. Photography : Marie Cecile Thijs.

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14.12.2015
Dutch Chocolate, designing a bonbon

The bitter drink was first introduced to Europe in 1528. Today, production and consumption of chocolate is a global affair and finding new forms for this wonderful food product has become quite a challenge, as we found out. In order to satisfy each individual’s chocolate cravings, we have created a crown-shaped figure and made five differently coloured taste combinations. My personal favourites: chocolate/espresso, strawberry/basil, white chocolate/passion fruit, orange/clove and blue-black berry/mint.

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14.12.2015
Dutch Tea, creating a tea set

While tea and history have been intertwined for thousands of years, the world’s history with the teapot is much more modern. The first ceramic teapot design hit the scene around 500 years ago. With his new EU teapot set, designer Roderick Vos has created a 21st century interpretation of brewing, pouring and savouring the ancient beverage. The unique earthenware teapot and matching teacups have been exclusively manufactured by the oldest ceramics company in the Netherlands, Koninklijke Tichelaar Makkum (1572), a company recognised the world around for its handmade ceramics. The wealth of expertise and skill this company has accumulated over the centuries is simply priceless. Photography : Marie Cecile Thijs.

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13.12.2015
An EU tie for all Dutch ministers

The presidency of the Council of the European Union is responsible for the functioning of the Council of the European Union, the upper house of the EU legislature. It rotates among the member states of the EU every six months. The presidency is not an individual, but rather the position is held by a national government. In the first half of 2016 the Netherlands held the Presidency of the Council of the European Union. Our studio had the prestigious task to design a tie for all dutch ministers and high officials and that was quite an honour. We made two variations in 'Royal blue and Dutch orange'. The pattern of this silk tie was based on the EU logo.

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11.12.2015
Glassblowing, a reversible wine glass

Glass blowing. The art of shaping glass that has been heated into a viscid state, by inflating it through a tube. It sounds very technical, but the art of manual glassblowing is really about the individual glass maker’s passion for his craft. Each mouth-blown glass piece is, in a way, a unique handmade product. A new era in glassmaking in the Netherlands began in the early 1950s, led by several wonderful designers such as Chris Lebeau and Andries Copier. This EU crystal glass design is my personal homage to Dutch glass blower Andries Copier and the traditional art of glassblowing, an almost forgotten skill in this century.

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10.12.2015
Dutch Dinner, a project for Minbuza

This tablecloth design explores the innate qualities of damask cloth, one of the oldest weaving patterns in the world, dating back to the Byzantine era. Thanks to a unique manufacturing method, damask is luminous, as the pattern captures and reflects the light differently than the background fabric. For her version, Claire Vos has chosen a light-grey cotton Dutch plaid that dissolves and reassembles over an expanse of dark cream-colored linen fabric. The EU tablecloths, made from 50% organic cotton and 50% organic linen, are woven in one of the oldest Dutch textile factories in the Netherlands. Photography : Marie Cecile Thijs.

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1.12.2015
Bakelite, what a joy to work with this forgotten material

I have always been attracted to a much used plastic material from the 20th century, called bakelite. This material is quite shiny and has a rich looking appearance. Bakelite concurred the market during the uprise of the Art Deco movement. Lot’s of products made during that period are jewels of design and still much loved by collectors. Maybe this was the main reason why I also fell in love with this particular material. The shapes of these bakelite products -that I saw as a kid- spoke to my imagination. Therefor it was a pleasure to be able to work with this technology and almost forgotten material. This cookie jar design is my homage to an almost forgotten time and material. And yes, soon available at our web store.

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22.4.2015
Cavaletta, a linear metal base combined with a sculptural shape

We finally started on a project where we upholster a plywood, form foamed, seating shell. Plywood always has been a material that has fascinated me. The pressed layers of veneer are extremely strong but at the same time flexibel. The ideal material to create a comfortably sitting dining chair. The big advantage of plywood is the following: with a thickness of 8/10 mm, one is able to create a very thin looking, visually attractive, seating shell. Because of the clean organic lines of the shell we created a simple linear teel tubular base, as a contrast. The two back legs are following the -upward -round shape of the seat, and have a wonderful detailed curve, thus creating emphasizing the long vertical tubular steel legs. The result was an almost insect looking 'creature'. That's why we named it Cavaletta, -grasshopper-.

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21.4.2015
The MaMa vase, in production again

Vases don't just hold beautiful arrangements of your favorite flowers. They can be beautiful all by themselves. This was my basic concept when I designed the stoneware Mama vase in 1999. So roses are red and violets are blue, but you can save those flowers and the Mama vase will look great too! Starting from April 2015, Dutch ceramic manufacturer Cor Unum will pick up the production of the Mama vase so within a short while this dutch icon will be available again in our webshop. Thank’s Cor Unum !

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20.4.2015
A prong setting, a side table as adornment

The Ruby is considered the most magnificent of all gems, the queen of stones. Inspired by the reflections of light and transparencies found in these gemstones, I decided to develop a serie of side tables from colored mirror glass . While developing the custom made glass, the shape and facets that I had designed for the table top reminded me of a classic ring with a prong setting. A prong is a little metal claw that grips the diamond tightly, holding it in place. A benefit of this setting is that there is a minimum presence of metal, so that there’s more diamond to see and more light that can pass through, thus adding to its brilliance. This gave me the idea to translate this concept for dutch furniture brand Linteloo in a serie of modular geometrical tables that can be combined as a family to create sculptural arrangements. The Ruby’s were born!

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20.4.2015
Light object for Chateau de la Resle

My design for the Chablis candlestick for the French brand Chateau de la Resle is an ode to the sensual curves of wine bottles from Burgundy in general and the internationally renowned Chablis in particular. I have made a new candlestick that literally means the crown on every bottle of Chablis, and with it I have created a pièce de mileu that you can easily see on the dining table in a chateau. Making the casting molds for this project, from sand, was an even bigger challenge! These new designs will be presented during the upcoming Salone del Mobile.

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4.4.2015
The need for good molds

I always enjoyed clay crafts, especially slip clay casting. But as a designer you should realize the following: if you do not understand how to make molds it is impossible to create succesful products in ceramics. Mold making opens up endless potential for creative expression. In my opinion understanding this technology simply makes you a better designer. Making plaster molds for slip casting and press molding can really be very inspiring. My new vase design for Cor Unum is a good example. Mold making enables us to create complex forms so that we can manufacture our designs in larger quantities. Vase Nefertiti is my personal homage to designer Zweitse landsheer and an almost forgotten field of industry, dutch ceramics! photography: Marije Kuiper.

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29.3.2015
Marie Cécile Thijs & our vase Bloom

A great picture by Marie Cécile Thijs. Stillness is key. One can see influences reminiscent of the 17th century Old Masters, at the same time her personal interpretation is completely modern. She plays with her subjects by bringing them to life unexpectedly, or – on the contrary – freezing them in space. Objects become characters. They move away from their daily destination, away from time and space. Sometimes even with humor.

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19.3.2015
Hexagon table & working with terrazzo

Terrazzo as we know was first seen around the time of the Italian Renaissance. Waste marble was crushed and used to cast the floors. It really is a fascinating material to work with and was on my personal to do list for quite some time. Jan te Linteloo supported my idea to cast a low side table in this material, and consequently my hexagon table was born. The wet cast method of production is quite simple: a fluid mix is poured into a mold and allowed to harden. Because of the fluid, it allows the designed shapes to be moulded into more complex and intricate shapes. After the material has hardened you grind and polish the table top, and all kinds of colors appear such as marble stone & glass! Because of the shape several of these tables can be connected in a playful manner. You can use just one three legged table element next to your sofa or simply connect a few hexagon units in the middle of your room and create a table pattern.

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18.3.2015
The product that became a failure

Blow molding is quite an interesting technology, and I had the chance to do a product proposal for a well known dutch brand, called Elho. They create design pottery from recycled materials. I came up with an interesting idea; create an organic, fluid shape, and attach a circular tube to the frame as a handle. Make it look very cartoonesk. The prototype came out looking great and I was in a winning mood. However: 'the universe has a way of throwing you curve balls.’  They didn’t like the product. Why do we like what we like? An eye-opener.

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7.3.2015
Woodturning & art school memories

The material wood has always had a special attraction for me, but working wood on the lathe in particular has fascinated me since my time at art school. I couldn't stay away from the woodshop. With this technique you peel, as it were, layer by layer of a block of wood and during woodturning you discover the beauty, texture and smell of the material while simultaneously trying to give the wood a beautiful shape and therefore a second life. I recently had the opportunity to pick up this beautiful technique again with a project for the Linteloo brand. I came up with three side tables made of wood and gave them the Japanese name Kigi, a family of trees. With this Kigi table series you will experience that the beauty of these designs lies not only in the basic shape, but also in the good width and height ratio of the product.

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22.10.2014
Dutch landscapes, an artistic presentation

The dutch design brand Ice International presents a new collection of hand knotted rugs by four dutch 'design couples’. Dutch Landscapes will be presented at De Kazerne , Eindhoven. We have also been busy with the design of this installation, and the result turned out better than expected. The concept of presenting 'floating’ carpets in a minimalistic manner was in my opinion the only option. Through the vertical steel cables we were able to guide the low voltage, enabling us to use led light.

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11.10.2014
Ice International, an inspiring collaboration

Claire Vos: To me, technical possibilities mark the starting point for each project. The unique post-treatments and production methods we were introduced to by ICE International were the inspiration for my Dutch Landscape No.1. As the only one in the series, this rug was tufted by hand and then sheared to create a relief in the texture. There is a special trick to that: the relief was created in two contrasting colours over the central axis. This creates a chameleon effect: walking around the rug, you see different colours from different sides. For this reason I would like to see this rug being used wall to wall in a public space. I think it would have a hugely surprising effect to enter a space and see a rug in a specific colour, and then see a totally different colour when turning back from the other side of the space! The play of colours is strengthened by the degradé. This also typifies my work: whether it involves colour, motif or material, the gradient is a constant source of inspiration. Coming from a family with a history of four generations of textile designers, this project was perfect to express my love of textiles.

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10.10.2014
Fuzz, a diverse family of colorful plaids

Claire Vos Teeuwen calls her Fuzz plaids Fashion for Furniture, and that is precisely what they are; colourful accents for the interior. One pattern, three colour combinations. Or six, in fact, because the front and back of each plaid feature a different colour combination. The subtle weave and finishing make them super-soft to the touch. And of course, they are snug and warm. My ancestors have been textile merchants for generations. I think my love for jacquard weave fabrics is probably in the blood. My starting point with the Bulb series was to optimise the brightness of the jacquard weave by applying contrasting colours. In the design, the colour shading results in a clear graphic pattern. The name Fuzz refers to this shading effect. The front and back of the woollen plaids have different colour combinations which adds a further element of surprise. With three colour themes – Green, Blue and Pink – they really add something valuable to an interior. Fashion for furniture, I call them.

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9.10.2014
BimBom, the circus as source of inspiration

‘Something new for the home: our organically shaped seating elements, inspired by the magic of the circus. Roderick Vos: ‘Ever since I was a child this magical world has made a profound impression on me, because of the colourful shapes and attributes.’ Claire Vos: ‘The graphic patterns I saw there when I was a child, the lozenge patterns, suddenly became an inspiration for the BimBom.’ When we started developing the seats, things simply fell into place. The mirrored triangular shapes form a kind of lozenge. The different shades and decorative stitching turn these seating elements into a true ode to the circus.’

‘The circus represents aesthetics and perfection. Every tableau is a story that tells itself. The same applies to our collaboration with Design on Stock. Because a design won’t be good unless you can immediately feel AND see that it makes sense. Designing means practising, practising, and more practising. The BimBom series is our personal ode to the circus. Because, much like being in the circus, being a designer is not a job, it’s a life.’

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5.9.2014
Don's Office' a special working desk for an eccentric client

Don Draper's office features a dark wood desk, which holds a lighter and ash tray, an Eames executive chair, and advertisements for IBM and Hamilton on the walls. A pop of color comes from a pair of orange client chairs. Our design office had a challenging task to design a unique working desk for an eccentric doctor. I wanted this product design to look as it came straight from Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce offices from my favorite television drama serie Mad Men. The re-issued bakelite power sockets combined with the smoked oak drawers and table top turned out quite well! We lost money on this custom made project, but I am so happy that we didn’t gave up.

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1.9.2014
Patterns, textile designs for Functionals.eu

Conic textile motifs merge and emerge three dishtowels designed by Claire Vos. A traditional French pattern dissolves into a pattern from Dutch folk art. Scottish plaid melds into an Asian theme. Finally, a Greek key turns into a checkered pattern. The patterns go through their choreography in graphic black and white, although a bright stripe of bright red, blue, or green bisects each towel.

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11.7.2014
Vase for dutch brand Social Label

A glaze is a layer of glass with which a fired clay product can be covered. The glass is composed of a mixture of non-organic minerals: metal oxides and silicates. This is mixed with water to form a liquid, which is then poured over a ceramic product, or else the product is immersed in it or sprayed with it. When the product is fired with the glaze, the powder mixture melts to form a solid glass layer that adheres to the fired clay to which it is applied. Although I love to work with bright colored glazes, this design specifically needed a matt white glaze so that all is focused on the beautiful shape of the crown. Less is more.

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9.7.2014
Where wood meets steel

I have always had a certain fascination for the H- Beam. An H beam is a structural element, a kind of economical profiled steel. Of course it is mainly used in architecture, but one can use this steel beam for other purposes, such as a construction for a table base. Because I always wanted to work with these steel profiles, I created my table serie BLAKELEY, named after the inventor of the H beam, George H. Blakeley. The contrast and aesthetic use of wood and steel turned out quite interesting in my first prototypes of a bench and dining table. Blakeley has three sizes: 200, 225 and 250 cm. These designs have become an ode to the industrial revolution of the roaring 20’s! Blakeley will be presented by SPOINQ at Maison & Objet, Paris.

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1.6.2014
Patterns, table linen produced by textile museum Tilburg

Damasks were one of the five basic weaving techniques of the Byzantine and Islamic weaving centers in the early Middle Ages. Today, damask weaves are produced in monochromatic weaves in silk, linen or linen-type fabrics. The long floats of satin-woven warp and weft threads cause soft highlights on the fabric which reflect the light differently. The enlarged patterns in the table linen designs by Claire Vos for functionals.eu enhance this effect in a magical way.

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1.4.2014
Pillow Cabinet, made out of folded sheet metal

This year we will celebrate the Linteloo brand's 20th anniversary in Milan, so we decided to contribute a design for Jan's collection in quite a different material. The Pillow Cabinet is a modern version of a so-called pillow armoire and features puff-like front panels made from 2mm sheet metal. Making my pillow cabinet from this material was not an easy task. There are some ground rules for working with sheet metal: bend long parts and weld short. In my opinion sheet metal design is the most cost-effective way to manufacture a product, and for me this was a good reason to experiment with this material. But: 'what works on paper, doesn't always work in the physical world as planned, for a variety of reasons'. Bends have radius, sheet has thickness, and tools need space to access a bend. It sounds simple, but for me 'trial and error' at the factory was the only way to find the best aesthetic design solutions for this wonderful cabinet.

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30.3.2014
Chateau de la Resle, a candle holder for a chablis bottle

My design of the Chablis candleholder for the French brand Chateau de la Resle is an ode to the sensually curved shape of Burgundy wine bottles in general and the internationally renowned Chablis specifically. I have created a new candleholder that literally crowns every Chablis bottle, thus creating a center piece one can easily imagine on a château dining table. The contrast between the round shapes of the actual parts that hold the candles and the ingenious structure of graphic lines creates an interesting visual balance. But developing the sand casting moulds for this project was an even bigger challenge! These new designs will be presented at the upcoming Salone del Mobile.http://www.rossanaorlandi.com

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27.11.2013
Fayence, an old technique

The product range created by Koninklijke Tichelaar Makkum is an exciting and inspiring collection of contemporary designs. It is a tangible result of the company’s vision, which centres on conservation and innovation within traditional craftsmanship. The items in the collection, which includes my hand-painted MaMa vase, produced by hand and with the utmost care, consists of tableware sets, vases and decorative earthenware. A number of these designs have become icons of Dutch design history and are regarded as tomorrow’s cultural heritage. That’s all very well, but let’s not forget that these are still first and foremost objects for everyday use.

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22.11.2013
Sonder Jansen, a unique working desk

I was asked by dutch architectural office HilberinkBosch to design office tables for one of their projects in The Netherlands.The use of wood combined with rounded glass reminded me a bit of the American 'streamline moderne' architecture of the late 50-'s. It was evident that a very long boomerang shaped table was the best aesthetic option for this interior. The feel of the 50's was almost re-captured after we installed the tables so we couldn't resist to make a photo inspired by the American television drama MadMen.

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2.11.2013
Dresser Montigny, just messing around in the workshop

The constructivist approach to product design has always instinctively appealed to me as a designer. Look at the Bauhaus movement from the late 1920s, which has brought forth some beautiful results. And yet, I’ve always had my doubts about the rule that designing by strictly following a method could only lead to a good design. When I was designing my Montigny dresser I allowed my intuition to guide me instead, while taking a systematic approach to the basic design of the frame. Sometimes you simply have to follow your gut feeling. Just look at how gorgeous this wooden product has become. Montigny will be presented by the Priveekollektie gallery at PAN Amsterdam and afterwards at Design Miami 2013.

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31.10.2013
Reply Chair & my love for plywood

A technical tour-de-force: this stackable one-piece chair made of several sheets of plywood. Roderick Vos: ‘For me a one-piece plywood chair is the optimum in machine-oriented design.We have conducted a series of experiments to be able to produce this unique chair, whose back, seat, AND legs have been formed in the same single pressing process. The biggest challenge was in finding the right heat – pressure ratio during pressing, so that we could create the three-dimensional shapes of the seat and back without tearing the wood. The final result is a great success, both technically and aesthetically. We worked on it for months. Function, comfort and charisma go hand in hand.’ The FSC chair is available in different types of plywood.

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30.10.2013
Kitchen for Chateau de la Resle

A while ago I was given the wonderful opportunity to design a kitchen for Johan Bouman and Pieter Franssens at their Chateau de la Resle. This luxury Bed & Breakfast, with panoramic views of the valley of Montigny-la-Resle, is situated in a 14-acre estate in the Burgundy area, a 10-minute drive from Auxerre. When I visited the castle I was shown the crumbling old barn where the owners intended to install their kitchen. The worn-down old oak flooring of the first floor was supported by a modern, steel H beam, and suddenly I was struck by the beauty of combining the old world with the new. The steel H beam ended up as my inspiration for the new, contemporary kitchen I was to design. Every detail has been given extensive thought, from the overall kitchen to the cutting boards named Saint Germain. www.chateaudelaresle.com

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3.8.2013
It takes 187 pieces to build a classic

Since its inception, we have sold more than 50.000 Bloq sofas, and recently our studio came up with designs for additional corner elements to fully complete the series! The series now features several new options for arrangement. Bloq has been around for 8 years, which calls for a celebration! That is why, in collaboration with the manufacturers from Designonstock, we have come up with this 'exploded view' consisting of 187 components, for the latest issue of Designonstock Magazine. It goes without saying that the sofa is available from our website, signed.

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12.6.2013
Kitsch can be design too

Wandering through Amsterdam I encountered my MaMa vase, created some years ago, lost in a tourist shop’s window display. By the end of the 20th century, public interest in industrial art had dropped. Their perseverance brought Royal Tichelaar to the vanguard of ceramic design.All over the world the importance of the handmade, individually crafted product is being recognized, in the shape of design or kitsch. But what has my vase done to deserve this?

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16.5.2013
A unique collaboration with Oswin

Something beautiful and special is born when craftspeople who cannot work in regular employment start working with designers. The great and meaningful products that result from such collaborations are called Social Label. The art of working, presenting and selling in collaboration. This is how my vase 'OSWIN' came into the world. The Social Label concept for collaboration brings together art and welfare. A Social Label is given to each unique collaboration with a renowned designer. The product is then made, presented and sold by people working in sheltered workshops. The unique products, which are produced in limited series, are made with great professional skill and pleasure. And the programme has an added benefit: it opens up perspectives for a group of people who experience difficulties in finding regular employment. www.sociallabel.nl

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1.4.2013
Interview at our new Studio

An interview held at our new Studio, published by the Italian "ELLE DECOR" in the April issue (nr 4), to coincide with the Salone del Mobile 2013. We couldn't be happier! In Milan we presented several new designs for different manufacturers. Thank you, Laura Maggi! Photography: Rene van der Hulst, Art Direction: Petra Janssen

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1.4.2013
Nemo, an experiment

How to create my first standing lamp out of sheet metal for Dutch company  New Duivendrecht? It turned out to be a real industrial challenge. I always try to experiment with technologies I have never used before, in this case pressing metal sheet. Sheet metal folding is the shaping of sheet metal on a  bend press. With 6 pressed sheets we were able to create a standing lamp. I love simplicity. 'Nemo', is inspired by the shape of Jellyfish and its umbrella-shaped belland trailing tentacles. It was a fun project.

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2.3.2013
A tufted rug, but a little different

Animal hides provided an important source of clothing and decoration for prehistoric humans.  Even during the caveman days, people were using leaves, twigs and animal skin to decorate the  interior part of their caves. So why not keep this tradition alive? We have created four tufted carpets based on animal shapes.  The technology of tufting consists of inserting a thread through a layered fabric.  After insertion, the needle returns along the same trajectory, leaving a loop of the thread at the bottom of the fabric. For the Roadkill carpets we have used 8 cm threads to create an artificial, machine-made skin with a warm and tactile appeal.  The carpet designs vary from small to size XXL pieces, almost 4.30 metres long.

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1.1.2013
New antiques

I have always loved the technique of powder coating on sheet metal. The look of it reminds me of the beautiful lacquer work on furniture from Zhejiang Province, and the bright colors found on wood chests from Tibet. Now we have introduced 2 new colors for my metal table designs for Dutch brand Linteloo: reseda green Ral 6011 & broom Yellow Ral 1032. Modern lines, bright colors, combined with classic veneer.Wow!

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2.10.2012
A Little ritual

The streets of Bali are spotless in the early morning hours and sidewalks, steps, statues, and temples are now ready for the daily gift of offerings meant to please the various gods and demons of Balinese Hinduism.In 2005, I saw local women carrying round teak trays with offerings and they inspired me to design my minimalistic table series OBI for Linteloo.By creating an abstract basic form and then increasing only its scale in an almost absurdist manner these black stained tables were born. And after 7 years of production, due to its success, Obi can now be ordered in any Ral color. Wow!

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1.10.2012
At the studio

In my opinion the presence of plants bring a positive change to the working environment. Moreover, plants have a positive effect on the sense of wellbeing. Tropical plants emit oxygen, clean the air and increase productivity. Because we did not have enough floor space at our office and showroom, and were in desperate need of light, the 'Bucketlight' was born. And this concept gave us a second opportunity. We created sockets in the objects enabling us to connect our computers over our workstations avoiding  heaps of tangled cords.

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1.9.2012
Plaids in multi color

In collaboration with AaBe Claire Vos designed our XXL plaids for our webstore! She has always found Jacquard weaving an inspiring technology. The Jacquard loom is a mechanical loom, invented by Joseph Marie Jacquard in 1801, that simplifies the process of manufacturing textiles with complex patterns such as brocade, damask and matelasse. We have now created modern 100 % woolen plaids in a larger size, 150 x 480 cm.



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1.8.2012
First Tea & the creation of a wonderful tea-set

Original First Tea is about more than simply dipping a tea bag in hot water. It’s a complete concept, created by a Dutch couple, with an eye for detail and a great sense of quality. I was asked to design some new porcelain products for their collection. The toughness, strength, and translucence of porcelain makes it a fun material to work with. As China was the birthplace of porcelain this material is often called bone china. These light tea cups will soon be available at our web shop.

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1.7.2012
Financieel Dagblad & a great picture

On 9 June the newspaper Financieele Dagblad (FD) printed an interview with me in the Saturday edition. It was a pure and honest story written by Emilie Escher and photographed by Marie Cecile Thijs.A no-nonsense interview about our work and dreams... Thanks, Marie Cecile for the wonderful images!

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1.6.2012
Redesigning the past

When we moved our studio to our new building which dates from the 1930s we needed a light installation to illuminate our product designs. When I thought of this it suddenly became clear that this building needed warm light with traditional light bulbs, and definitely not halogen or strip lights. I therefore contacted Rico Pronk, an artist who more or less connects the past with the present in his work. Rico collects authentic electric switches, handles, volt and ampere meters from the mid-19th century and turns them into stunning new light installations. There were some setbacks but finally this project is ready!

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1.5.2012
Woolen plaids

Jacquard weaving makes it possible to program the raising of each warp thread independently in almost any loom. This brings a much greater versatility to the weaving process and the colorful end result. Tartan wool fabrics have a twilled plaid design and originate from Scotland. Tartans are used to identify Scottish families and clans and are made into kilts, scarves, sashes, plaids and more. Claire Vos now has made her own clan design in cooperation with AaBe. There are 2 patterns, each in three different color variations. Size 150X240.


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1.4.2012
Manhattan, a low table for your art books

There are no rules for making a good composition. In the design profession, we sometimes seem to ignore the good aspects of asymmetrical composition and unevenness. The empty space between these wooden "blocks" is an essential part of the composition and gives this low table for the Dutch brand Linteloo an interesting look. Plant roots do not grow at regular distances from each other either, nor do clouds have a perfect geometric shape. Perfection is an exception in nature, so why not experiment with this in design, which is how my project Manhattan was born. It will be presented during the Milan fair at Via Tortona 37.

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4.3.2012
Monty, 1st birthday

The very successful family sofa Monty, which I designed a year ago for Bert Plantagie, now consists of several modular units that allow a range of combinations. Monty is a piece designed to be used contrary to the trend in recent years. This comfortable sofa can be small or big, is durable and clever in shape. But when not in use it still remains a beautiful and timeless object to look at. Isn't that what it was all about?

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2.3.2012
An easy to manufacture chair for pub Dit

Many important examples of modernist furniture were made from plywood. Cheaper and more easily accessible than aluminum or steel, plywood was a key material for early 20th century designers. When the avant-garde architects and designers of the 1920s searched for ways of making cheap mass-producible furniture, plywood looked like an attractive solution. And let's be honest: it is still an attractive material to use today. Due to  the many requests my -easy to manufacure- chair designs created for pub DIT are now finally in production.

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1.3.2012
Monty, just a wonderful clubchair

Right now we are finalizing the Monty club chair for its presentation at the Van Nelle Ontwerpfabriek in Rotterdam during the 100 % Design event. In this specific case I have tried to minimize fabric waste by using the roll of fabric as efficiently as possible. We have folded the fabric for the upholstery achieving a smooth new look, sewing as little as possible! But how to cover a sharp or rounded corner? We came up with some nice solutions..

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1.1.2012
Tulipani, now made by skilled italian woodworkers

A reissue of the successful chair I designed in 2005 is being made by Arbor, an Italian factory near Venice. This plywood kitchen chair is now made of American walnut and looks really great. A steam-bent solid wood base attached to a plywood seat shell. I think the furniture craftsmanship in Italy is really of a particularly high quality. Tulipani is now even available in an upholstered version.

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1.12.2011
Trunk, a new table with a new developed wood laminate

This new CNC technique was introduced to add a unique character to the surface of untreated planks in a controlled production process. We have created a number of different wood and one became my personal favorite. With this new material I am working on a new series of wooden 'trunk' tables for Linteloo to be presented at IMM KOLN. We will present a unique table with lovely details in January 2012. Trunk is truly a table for purists.

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1.11.2011
Gili islands & biological structures from nature

I have always been fascinated by coral structures since I went snorkeling in Indonesia as a teenager. Corals  and coral reefs have inspiring structures and growth patterns. These complex shapes are  amazing and were an inspiration for my new ceramic vase design called GILI. Right now we are working on the moulds at Royal Tichelaar Makkum and trying to create a new glaze color that looks like 'jade'. The uneven base of the vessel allows it to tilt in several different directions while still retaining its balance.

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1.5.2011
100% design fair & an award

The Van Nelle Design Factory was once again the location for the 100% Design fair. The old factory is an architectural masterpiece and all kinds of product designs were exhibited in the monumental former coffee and tobacco factory. In short, a great presentation and to my surprise, one of my designs received an award. We received second prize for our stackable Reply Chair!

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1.3.2011
Bin, a multi functional low table for Linteloo

A thin metal sheet folded into a sophisticated geometric container. The beauty of modern industrial processes has always fascinated me, in this case using a metal working technology called laser cutting. With this technique I created 'BIN'. An object to store magazines & books but at the same time a great companion in your interior as a side table. This magazine bin is available in 2 sizes and 2 colors and was introduced by Dutch furniture brand Linteloo at Via Tortona 37 during the Milan fair.

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1.2.2011
Moving on

In 2007 we had a new lively and productive office in our hometown of Heusden, Netherlands. It was pleasant to work in and we rediscovered the advantages of designing from home. But now the decision to open our own concept store and the too tight design space lead to a new challenge. And so we will soon open our new design studio and inspiring showroom. A store that will be lovely, lovable and loving.We will open in 's-Hertogenbosch in April.

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1.2.2011
Maison et Objet, plaids in marino wool

Claire Vos has developed 8 different plaids patterns for Dutch manufacturer AaBe. All patterns and color combinations are ready now and the first edition of the plaids will be woven within short time. The selection of colors took quite some time. The marino wool will be dyed this month, so that we will be able to present our innovative collection of jacquard woven plates at 'Maison et Objet'  this coming September at Paris!

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1.1.2011
Reply Chair & my love for plywood

My stackable Reply chair was created from several sheets of beech plywood.

For me personally 'a one piece chair' is the optimum in machine-oriented design. The complete product is realized in a single production pressing process to keep manufacturing costs low.  A unique pressing mould was made in order to create this chair.  Thoughtful and efficient use of FSC plywood and durability were definitely my guidelines for this project. The Reply chair has been acquired by the New York Museum of Arts and Design.

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1.12.2010
The birth of Mr. Ed

Think about all of the objects that you interact with on a daily basis. Do you ever stop to think about the design process behind their creation. The answer is probably not. But the designer of those objects has labored over how it will be used by you. They have spent hours, days, perhaps months considering how you will use their design. They have crafted their design to be as perfect as possible. But even when you see the unfinished 'Mr Ed' booklight in a production process, imperfection seems to have a certain beauty.

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1.11.2010
Sari & my love for rattan furniture

Simply a wonderful new publication featuring an old design. During the 1990's skilled Indonesian craftsmen helped me realize my low chair called sari. Asians love rattan, and modern rattan furniture remains highly popular in Japanese households. Amazing to see that after so many years this specific design 'stranded' in Tokyo  was used in a Japanese publication. I love the serenity of this image.

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1.9.2010
Sozu & my fascination for minimalist shapes

Finally my Sozu faucets are being introduced to the market. Sozu is a type of water fountain used in Japanese gardens. Usually made of Bamboo, it consists of a hollow pivoting arm attached to its vertical pipe. Water pours from this tube or pipe into the arm. This concept inspired me to create a simple-looking faucet for Dutch manufacturer  Zeromix. Four versions of Sozu will be launched starting from January 2011. Sozu is available in black, chrome or stainless steel.

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1.8.2010
Farewell of a good friend

As a designer you sometimes need to say goodbye to your old designs. Driade recently stopped producing the chairs I developed for them in 1999. During that period I worked a lot in Indonesia using bent metal pipe in combination with rattan. Both materials gave me the opportunity to gain structural strength in these designs. Amazing to see how timeless these pieces still are.

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1.7.2010
Drop, a seamless wall and fireplace

Under-Cover technology by Tulp.eu resulted in a new designproposal. 'Drop' is a fireplace hidden in a wall. It's cast made from soft stuccoed angles. What you don’t see: moulds made of heat resisting composite. Seamlessly built-in the wall, without comprimising the 'hearths’ plaster. Lightweight frames, easily applicable. A smooth top layer makes for easy painting in any possible colour.  In this photograph, the 'Drop' almost bursts out of the wall. Indeed, a very sensual shape!

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5.3.2010
Vanity, a surprising magazine table

The aesthetic appeal of an object is often the reason we buy it. In fact, some products are driven by the aesthetic appeal alone. This is unfortunate because it leads to product development that is lacking in the other areas. It is only when all three -functionality, simplicity, and aesthetic appeal- are combined in harmony that we achieve quality industrial design. For me, aesthetic appeal is important, but only when functionality and simplicity exist as well. Even with its geometric shape my Vanity table for dutch brand Linteloo has a charming double function.

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4.12.2009
Gold series, a limited edition for Gallery Priveekollektie

Our latest ceramic 'White Gold series' are three iconic designs by Royal Tichelaar Makkum, designed by our studio. It is a limited edition of 25 pieces per design. This edition is specially developed for gallery Priveekollektie, and are re-editions of designs we made in the late 90's. For me the fascinating shapes from nature are so interesting because of the beauty of line and image. The designs the MaMa vase, Atlantis bowl and Bloom vase are inspired by biological forms and cell divisions.

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Craftsmanship past and present

Production techniques from the past and the present are an ongoing inspiration to me. Product innovations often arise out of an understanding of materials and techniques. I believe this is where the strength of Dutch Design in general lies. Here in the Netherlands we are not just innovators when it comes to invention and creation, we also have a strong manufacturing industry. My six armed candelabra is a perfect example: made from aluminium, liquid casted in a pre-heated steel mould. Indestructible & timeless!

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