I think the future of design in 2019 looks bright. However, I think it’s important for companies and designers to think or keep thinking about what I call a ‘marked filter’.
Erik once said: “Certainly there is no real need for more stuff. There is just so much crap around. And unless you can somehow raise the quality, make everyday life a little bit easier for the end user… Only then you can justify adding on to the pile.” I think this quote says a lot about how he was designing, it was the things he was missing in his everyday life. I hope that the design of 2019 will use this way of thinking as I filter before new products are launched to the marked.
These days, we are working a lot on different relaunches. Designers can reach a level where they can call their designs timeless, however, some products do belong in the past, and some can be justified to bring back to the marked. For us, it’s about picking the pieces that fit into 2019, and leave the ones who don’t to exhibitions and such things.
We’re working on introducing several furniture products from Erik’s early years, and also bringing attention to pieces that exceed the borders of “industrial design” including clothing accessories and art pieces.
In general, I’ll say that I’m pretty positive about the direction the whole design business is moving towards these days. There have been many great introductions and relaunches this year and most important of all, the business began to look deeper into its own footprint on the environment.
Erik always focused on minimizing the use of material as much as possible, but also made things that could last for many years and wouldn’t end up as trash after a short time. I think it’s important for the business not to see itself too much as a fashion industry where trends make us buy new pieces often. Good design is long-lasting, and that counts for aesthetics, durability, and functionality. To me, it seems like that more and more brands are realizing this now after many years of changing direction too often.
This year, we introduced an electric kettle with Stelton that brought a new functionality into our EM77 series. Erik already did 99% of the design of the kettle before his death in 2014, but the project was put on hold for some years. It was a great experience to introduce an affordable electric kettle that differentiates from the other products on the market – it’s based on a design icon, and it’s an electric kettle that you actually like to look at in your kitchen.