Ukrainian-designed furniture collection returns to the basics of simplicity and ease

Two separate but complementary design movements have given rise to a new furniture market. The minimalist design trend embraced simpler shapes and structures, which made DIY or do-it-yourself furniture become more accepted than ever before. Even flat-packed furniture, however, has started to sway to the opposite side, increasing the complexity not only of the design but also the assembly of these products. While that definitely has some aesthetic appeal, it came at the price of losing what made such furniture convenient and flexible, especially when it comes to moving around from place to place. Seeing the transition from lockdown trends to the migration crisis, a group of Ukranian designers set about to create a set that goes back to the roots of flat-packed furniture, putting the focus back on simplicity, mobility, and ease of self-assembly.

Designer: YourFoRest

“Simple” doesn’t have to mean boring. Combining simple shapes can lead to interesting forms that delight the eyes just as much as complex curves or intersecting lines. This furniture collection’s simplicity, however, isn’t just in the way it looks. The more important mark of simplicity is the patented fastening system that makes it easy to put pieces together without the use of nails or screws, unlike other DIY furniture.

“Ease” is the predominant theme of this set, as made apparent by its name. The EasyStory collection is made up of six products that can stand on their own or be used to complement each other. They’re easy to put together and easy on the eyes, but they also exhibit non-trivial shapes like arcs and curves. That said, there are no hidden tricks or compartments to each piece, with all of its features and spaces available for anyone to easily see.

EasyBed is a low bed that is a perfect match for the equally low EasyTray. Likewise, EasyDesk is a straightforward work surface that you can use together with the EasySeat stool. EasyHanger is an open-style closet with space for shoes at the bottom and other items on top, while EasyTable is a single-layer side table with horizontal beams crossing its legs to give it a more interesting silhouette. All six pieces are made from natural ash wood and coated with a matte water-based varnish.

The EasyStory furniture collection uses an intersection of horizontal and vertical pieces to create its different shapes, and it’s this simple design that helps make it more understandable and approachable. More than just its static form, however, the design puts a heavy emphasis on ease of assembly and transportation, two essential properties where people find themselves constantly on the move, such as when evacuating their homes due to calamities or wars.

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This side and coffee tables have sustainability and simplicity ingrained in their DNA

Once upon a time, buying a table involved troublesome and inconvenient shipping arrangements because the furniture either comes pre-assembled or didn’t have any way to disassemble it anyway. These days, however, it has become trendy to buy flat-packed furniture, especially if they come with minimalist designs. These are easier to transport, sometimes by the buyers themselves, and are possible to take apart store away when they’re no longer needed. The trade-off, however, is often the complexity and difficulty of assembling the things on your own. Fortunately, more creative furniture designers have come up with new ways to simplify that process, and these wooden tables demonstrate how an easier process doesn’t exactly make the furniture less stable.

Designer: Ivan Nuño

Thanks to the prevalence of minimalist designs and the popularity of stores like IKEA, it isn’t uncommon these days for many people to prefer tables and chairs that arrive at their doorsteps in pieces. Logistics like transportation and storage can be cheaper, and it’s also not that much work for those already used to putting things together themselves by hand. The latter, however, doesn’t cover the majority of buyers that need simpler steps to follow. Unfortunately, simplicity can sometimes also mean fragility, and some might find their tables loosening in critical areas.

To correct that problem, Studio Nuño designed a new type of joinery that it says reduces the assembly time down to just a few minutes while still maintaining structural strength to bear the weight of everyday use. You simply insert the legs into the slots beneath the tabletop, slide in a supporting piece, and screw that piece down with an Allen wrench. The legs come in three or four distinct pieces for the side table and coffee table, respectively, so there are no confusing angles or combinations to worry about.

Although not an inherent property of flat-pack design, many products that come in this form often have a pinch of sustainable design as well. Studio Nuño, however, takes it to a whole new level by making sure both the product and its packaging are environment-friendly. The wood for the tables, for example, is made from Baltic birch plywood coated with high-pressure laminate made from recycled materials, while the joinery uses recycled steel. The packaging is devoid of single-use plastic, using 100% recycled and biodegradable materials. It even uses eco-friendly tape to keep things together.

Studio Nuño’s tables don’t skimp on the aesthetics either, fully embracing a minimalist design that blends well with any theme you might have running in your home. Simple and sustainable, this coffee and side table pair offers a fresh look at how furniture doesn’t have to be complicated to be beautiful or sturdy. At the same time, its simple assembly also proves that you don’t have to sweat too much to have a sturdy and reliable table for your use, whatever that may be.

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This ready-to-assemble chair brings a distinctive look to your dining room

Furniture that can be assembled at home has seen a rise in adoption over the past years, in no small thanks to the popularity of minimalist designs from the likes of IKEA. The idea is to allow these products to be shipped more efficiently while offloading the task of assembling the final piece to the owner. While it might be cheaper in terms of shipping and space, there are hidden costs to this system, such as the effort required to put everything together as well as limitations in design because of space requirements when being packaged and transported. These factors might actually be deal-breakers for some homeowners, which is why this wooden dining chair concept is particularly interesting in how it solves almost all those problems by being trivial to assemble while also looking quite unique and appealing.

Designer: Gabriel Emilio Portela

Ready-to-assemble or RTA furniture often comes as flat-packed products these days. They take up less space in storage or in transit and are often minimalist by nature to be easy to assemble. Despite that fact, it’s not always easy to actually assemble these pieces of furniture, with many of them requiring the use of at least a screwdriver or an Allen wrench, which are thankfully included in the box at times. Depending on the complexity of the design, that work can take anywhere from 30 minutes to hours.

The Yugan Chair, in contrast, can be assembled in just five minutes without using anything other than your two hands. The wooden chair’s design only requires fitting pieces together into holes, not unlike those wooden puzzles that form animals or popular landmarks. It uses a combination of architecture and physics to keep the chair together and support the person’s weight when sitting on it.

Of course, that isn’t the only admirable quality of this concept design. Specifically designed for small living spaces, the dining chair has a distinctive form you wouldn’t normally associate with this kind of furniture. There is almost no straight edge or surface in sight, with each part sporting soft curves that are eye-catching and pleasant. Admittedly, that does mean that this chair can’t be flat-packed, but its components will still take up less room than a fully assembled chair.

Although toolless assembly isn’t exactly new, the Yugan chair still manages to capture the imagination thanks to its curvy character. Even better, the design is finished yet. It is intended to go beyond being a dining chair and also function as a bench just by mixing parts. So while it will take up a bit more space in packaging and shipping, you are really hitting two birds in one with a multi-functional chair that won’t make you sweat too much just to put it together.

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This sustainable shelf requires no screws or tools to assemble

Looks can be deceiving, they say, and what might be simple could actually be complicated in reality. A simple desk, for example, might be minimalist on the outside but is hiding complex mechanisms in its drawers. Then again, the most successful and effective simple designs are actually born from sophisticated thinking and, at times, nontrivial concepts and theories. This wooden shelf, for example, is so simple through and through to the point that you might even wonder how it is able to hold its parts together. Fortunately, it does work as advertised, creating a flat-packed piece of furniture that is sustainable at every point, from its creation to its transportation and even to its assembly.

Designer: Carlos Platz

The market is filled with minimalist wooden shelves that can be shipped in a flat-pack and assembled at home. After all, IKEA has become a household name, almost literally, and is overflowing with such pieces of furniture. Unless they are formed from a single piece of material, most furniture is held together using screws, glues, or even pieces of plastic. This creates complexity that is hidden behind simple facades, a complexity that sometimes eats away at the planet little by little as well.

Inspired by the simplicity of alpine joinery and architecture, this wooden shelf throws out all those conventions to arrive at a connection system that is genius in its simplicity. There are no extra parts or materials that join the shelves and the legs together other than the shelves and legs themselves. There isn’t even any kind of adhesive to give you confidence that the shelf won’t just fall apart once you put something heavy. Instead, the shelf relies on shapes and physical to keep everything in its proper place.

Named after the Italian word for “rotation,” Svolta shelving uses pieces of wood that have special cutouts that fit into each other tightly. The shelves have circular cutouts where the legs are supposed to go. The legs, however, aren’t perfectly round but are like wooden rods split in half. The idea is that you insert the legs into the shelves sideways and then rotate them so that the groves match the shelves. With this design, a three-layer shelf with six legs can supposedly be assembled by a single person in just two minutes.

Keeping the design simple has other benefits that go beyond ease of assembly. The furniture can be packed more tightly to reduce packaging waste, and they can be transported easily and more efficiently, further reducing carbon emissions from transporting products. The shelf can also be made from sustainable materials and processes, and Svolta itself is made from European oak and finished with eco-friendly colorless hard oil. Even better, it’s a system that can scale to other types and sizes of shelves, creating a new shelving system that is so simple yet elegant that it feels almost like magic.

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Top 10 flat-pack designs that are super easy to carry + assemble

Flat-packed designs are really quite intriguing! They’re portable, easy to put together and occupy minimum space. And, this innovative technology is now being introduced to almost all kinds of product designs! From foldable chairs to pet houses, there’s nothing that cannot be flat-packed. These designs, not only rate high on space efficiency, but also eliminate the usage of heavier space-consuming designs. They are definitely functionally and ergonomically beneficial, but they also possess minimal and clean aesthetics, that allow them to harmoniously blend with any living space. Flat-packed designs are extremely easy to move around from one place to another –  without having to do any heavy lifting and carrying.

1. The Leaning Chair

Many flat-pack furniture also come with an implicit benefit. In most cases, the separate pieces can be cut out from a single sheet of material, often wood or fiberboard, which minimizes the wasted material. At first brush, that almost seems like the key feature of the Leaning Chair set, and it’s definitely an important one. All three members of the set are CNC cut from the same 4×8 piece of plywood, and while there are still areas of the sheet that are unused and probably discarded, it’s still a lot less wasteful than conventionally assembled furniture.

Why is it noteworthy?

The set features a chair, an ottoman for your feet, and a side table to complete the setting. Like any flat-pack furniture, they can all be assembled without screws or tools. You don’t even need fasteners or glue to keep them together.

What we like

  • Sustainable + efficient design
  • Ready-to-assemble
  • Sturdier than it looks

What we dislike

  • Some people might actually be wary of this kind of assembled furniture, especially chairs that look a bit unstable on their feet

2. Pagoda

Shanghai-based Stellar Works teamed up with American design studio Bassam Fellows to come up with an East meets West kind of chair that can fit your dining room, your office pantry, or your indie cafe.

Why is it noteworthy?

Pagoda is inspired by both the cafe culture in Shanghai during the 1920s and the cafe chairs from Vienna in the 19th century. Aside from the fact that it’s well-designed, it’s also pretty convenient to assemble it as there are only six parts in the package.

What we like

  • Inspired by the cantilevered, upward-curving gates of pagodas in Asia
  • You can choose from different finishes depending on the motif of your home or business space

What we dislike

  • No complaints!

3. The Folding Kettle

The Folding Kettle comes with a flat-pack design that opens up rather cleverly, expanding its volume while creating a kettle that’s stable enough to stand vertically on any surface.

Why is it noteworthy?

“Due to its unique storage structure, the capacity of this travel-friendly folding kettle after unfolding is approximately 1.2 liters”, says C60 Design’s team lead Chu Wenbao. “It has three main characteristics: simple operation, easy storage, and a minimal aesthetic.” The kettle’s travel-friendly design borrows a lot from a travel iron. It’s compact when you need it to be, and functional when opened. It also has a detachable cable that allows you to connect it to a power outlet to heat water wherever you are.

What we like

  • Features a flat-pack design making it completely travel-friendly

What we dislike

  • No complaints!

4. Fold and Rescue

Designed to make rescuing human lives efficient, the Fold And Rescue lifeboat flips closed while in storage, thanks to its origami-inspired form.

Why is it noteworthy?

The inspiration for the Fold And Rescue came from the paper boat itself, showing how inspiration can travel in both directions. Unlike an inflatable lifeboat that poses the danger of deflating or not inflating correctly, the Fold And Rescue is made from a naturally buoyant material, and just needs to be opened to be used. In its folded form, it occupies a third of its original space and can be stacked together. When needed, just open the boat out and you’ve got two seats that can comfortably fit 4-6 people.

What we like

  • It comes with a self-locking mechanism built into the benches, so the boat never accidentally closes shut when open

What we dislike

  • No complaints!

5. The Storm Lamp

The beauty of the Storm Lamp by Julia Kononenko is that there isn’t any method to its mad design. The lamp comes with a variety of laser-cut wooden panels that can be arranged/oriented in any way you like because as its name suggests, the Storm Lamp is all about beauty in chaos. Looking almost like an abstract tornado, the lamp is entirely made from flat pieces of laser-cut plywood that are either left plain or painted black.

Why is it noteworthy?

When assembled together, they create a 3D form using the Gestalt visual law of continuity. Moreover, the jagged edges themselves illuminate to look like chaotic lightning strikes, reinforcing the product’s inspiration!

What we like

  • The lamps are available in both hanging and floor formats
  • The jagged edges themselves illuminate to look like chaotic lightning strikes

What we dislike

  • No complaints!

6. Puffa

Creation of industrial designers Yin-Yu Lo and Trinna Wu, this accessory takes flat packaging as the core idea for portability. I like the idea of having the option to carry a comfy sofa to the next camping trip or the leisurely beach day on the weekend.

Why is it noteworthy?

The duo has designed the urban sofa using 3D weaving distance technology in the inflatable structure. This production method keeps the middle surface of the sofa flat with a stable supporting force that prevents eventual sagging with such inflatable products. It can be inflated instantly without much hassle, and the stiffness level of the seat and cushion can be adjusted as required. When it needs to be transported to another place, deflate Puffa and easily carry it on public transit or store it in the car’s boot.

What we like

  • The sofa folds to the size of a yoga mat, making it ultra-portable in nature
  • It will never sag like other inflatable sofas

What we dislike

  • The transparent/neon colour scheme may not appeal to everyone

7. The O TRL

What the world needs more of is minimal and elegant furniture like the O TRL by Annabella Hevesi. Annabella created this tray table as a versatile piece of furniture – use it to store your stationery, kitchen knick-knacks, or as a makeshift desk in work from the home emergency scene – the pure and minimal aesthetics of this design make it a perfect match everywhere.

Why is it noteworthy?

The trolley has a slim and sleek silhouette and is constructed using a black MDF board, powder-coated steel, and rubber. Do not be fooled by its humble looks; this tray can bear its fair share of weight and move around smoothly, given its large weight-bearing wheels.

What we like

  • Can bear weights
  • Moves around smoothly

What we dislike

  • The design looks a little frail

8. The Stair Cubby

The Stair Cubby, as it was christened, can be assembled without the use of tools, with tabs simply going into slots and held down with pegs. The cubby is designed to sit on two steps of stairs, but the panel on the back can slide up and down to adjust to different stair heights. The storage has five open-access cubbies for shoes, books, and any other item that can fit inside, keeping things organized and out of harm’s way.

Why is it noteworthy?

Staircase bins need to take into account the particular shape of stairs, but not all stairs are made equal, so they have to be a bit more flexible or at least configurable. Given how in-demand these storage solutions might be, they also need to be durable and sustainable. These two product design students from Nottingham Trent University in the UK hit both birds with one sheet of plywood.

What we like

  • Can be assembled without the use of tools
  • Great for homes with space constraints

What we dislike

  • We’re not sure how well it would hold heavier objects

9. Nook

Designed in two different sizes, Nook is a collection of desk and room dividers made from disused Just Booth cardboard shipping containers. Amidst busy offices, distractions can come at any moment. Conceptualized as a means for workers to get quiet concentration time, the collection of smaller dividers can be configured on desks to create a small working zone.

Why is it noteworthy?

It’s said that it takes a little over twenty minutes to get back to work after a distraction. Whether you’re working from home, in your local coffee shop or in a busy office–distractions are everywhere. Designing a means for privacy, Just Booth is a Polish acoustic pod brand that develops sound booths where you can retreat for privacy during the workday. Following a competition held by Just Booth and the Academy of Fine Arts in Łódź where designers were asked to repurpose Just Booth cardboard boxes, Patrycja Gorzela designed Nook.

What we like

  • Super lightweight and slim
  • Sustainable design

What we dislike

  • Could be easily damaged
  • Not sure how suitable it is for long-term use

10. staxxiom

With laser-cut pieces of wood that simply interlock to create your design, staxxiom is building on IKEA’s DIY culture by making their furniture more efficient, more eco-friendly, and as simplified as possible. That last part works in staxxiom’s favor too, because the simplified design gives their furniture a unified, wonderfully minimal aesthetic, along with the added benefit of being ridiculously easy to build too.

Why is it noteworthy?

The table’s design is just a 3-part assembly, featuring two wide interlocking leg panels and a surface on top… along with tiny coupling blocks that plug into the gaps to hold the design together. staxxiom’s shelves and stools work the same way too – with parts that just interlock together, and coupling blocks that fill in the gaps. More often than not, you don’t even NEED a manual because even a child could assemble it, and the assembly process is about as time-consuming as making a paper plane.

What we like

  • This unique approach to designing furniture benefits all the stakeholders in the product’s cycle
  • You can disassemble and reassemble your products too if you plan on shifting houses

What we dislike

  • No complaints!

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This ready-to-assemble flat-pack furniture set is made from a single piece of plywood

Wooden furniture is naturally made from different pieces, and most of the time, those pieces are taken from different pieces of wood. Conventional manufacturing processes try to maximize materials, but those often still produce a lot of wasted wood pieces. Because of this, there has been a great deal of interest in designing products like furniture or even vehicles that use up almost every available inch of a sheet of material, minimizing wasted space and wasted material. Of course, it requires a bit of thinking outside the box to be able to utilize almost every surface of wood, cardboard, or metal and turn it into an actual usable product, like this three-piece furniture set that also applies that unconventional thinking to create a chair designed to lean backward.

Designer: Sheridan Kromann

Flat-pack furniture has become popular with people who want to economize on space or expenses, especially when it comes to shipping and assembly. Almost like those wooden puzzle pieces that require no special tools to form an animal or historic landmark, these ready-to-assemble products try to reduce the stress involved when assembling furniture. Of course, ready-made furniture delivered to your house will still be easier, but flat-packs at least don’t require screws or tools to put together. All you need is the ability to follow instructions.

Many flat-pack furniture also come with an implicit benefit. In most cases, the separate pieces can be cut out from a single sheet of material, often wood or fiberboard, which minimizes the wasted material. At first brush, that almost seems like the key feature of the Leaning Chair set, and it’s definitely an important one. All three members of the set are CNC cut from the same 4×8 piece of plywood, and while there are still areas of the sheet that are unused and probably discarded, it’s still a lot less wasteful than conventionally assembled furniture.

The set features a chair, an ottoman for your feet, and a side table to complete the setting. Like any flat-pack furniture, they can all be assembled without screws or tools. You don’t even need fasteners or glue to keep them together. Of course, some people might actually be wary of this kind of assembled furniture, especially chairs that look a bit unstable on their feet. The Leaning Chair, however, is specifically designed that way to prevent one of the most common accidents with chairs.

Some people try to lean back on their chairs and end up falling backward because typical legs aren’t designed to support that use case. This chair’s base, however, curves and extends backward, almost like a rocking chair, allowing the person to lean back safely and with confidence. Unlike a rocking chair, however, it doesn’t tilt forward, making it stand stably and still when you don’t want to lean back.

Admittedly, flat-pack furniture isn’t exactly the prettiest to look at unless you actually prefer that raw, puzzle-like aesthetic. Unfortunately, that same aesthetic might make people less comfortable and less confident in the stability of the products. Either way, the Leaning Chair furniture concept is yet another interesting example of conventions being stretched and broken to create designs that are not only efficient but also sustainable.

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This IKEA-inspired modular kitchen system is designed for digital nomads

Rëkoøk is a modular kitchen system designed for the digital nomads of today to bring their kitchen with them anywhere work takes them.

IKEA is one of the most iconic furniture brands of all time–it’s no wonder designers find endless inspiration from the multinational, Swedish-founded conglomerate. While IKEA has always been a primary source of furniture for economical buyers hoping to bring a touch of Scandinavian design into their homes, the digital nomad era of today makes the flatpack designs and easy-to-assemble pieces from IKEA that much more relevant. Merging the design language of IKEA with a modular and interchangeable build, Rëkoøk is a portable kitchen concept designed for the digital nomads of today to feel at home wherever work takes them.

Designer: Edoardo Gouffran

Constructing Rëkoøk, product designer Edoardo Gouffran hoped to build a flatpack kitchen system that allowed digital nomads to bring their kitchen with them as they move from one space to another. Depending on the space they move into, digital nomads can configure Rëkoøk to fit their culinary and spatial needs.

The idea behind Rëkoøk was to “create a kitchen that respected the rule of the three R’s: Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle and [one] that was easy and quick to assemble.” Users will need only to attach the kitchen sink to a water supply system for operation.

As a result, Rëkoøk is comprised of modules that users can easily fasten together with included hardware and tools for ultimate customization. Smaller spaces might require a more vertical kitchen, so users can adjust Rëkoøk’s build to fit that space.

Then, larger spaces might allow for more counter space, allowing users to elongate the kitchen system and spread out a bit. Just like IKEA’s furniture pieces, users can assemble Rëkoøk through an easy-to-follow set of instructions that come with each package. An accompanying app also supplies buyers with food recipes and assembly instructions.

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Xylo Living is a flexible and modular furniture platform that doesn’t require any tools

In this day and age when sustainability is critical, we need to be wiser when shopping for the right furniture. There are plenty of affordable options but they’re not always exactly of good quality. Sure, you can easily buy from a store or online but they don’t really last. Most of them use cheap materials and still require assembly which can take a lot of time and energy—but not Xylo Living, a smart modular furniture system that can fit any lifestyle. With only several components and sans the need for any tools or accessories, you can create different types of furniture to meet your needs.

Designer: Xylo Living

Click Here to Buy Now: $750 $1500 (50% off). Hurry, exclusive deal for YD readers only!

For homeowners or renters who are opting for better quality furnishings, Xylo Living can be a great option. It’s a flexible platform that offers easy-to-assemble and disassemble furniture pieces. The furniture can be made using three component types including Surface Pieces, Side Profile Pieces, and Connecting Slats. Xylo Living allows you to interchange components to make the piece you want. It’s like Lego for adults but with bigger and different pieces. You can assemble the pieces into a table or a chair or whatever it is you can imagine. You don’t even need to bring out your toolbox because the pieces can be easily connected.

The Xylo Living furniture system boasts a modular design. When you’ve finished a chair, you can make more to build a couch. You can also make a side table, center table, dining table, or maybe a TV stand. For people who like to arrange their home layout and decors more frequently, you can turn to Xylo Living as you can quickly transform a piece of furniture into a new one depending on your need and the living space. All the items you’re making, when put together, will then result to a minimal aesthetic and unified look.

The modular system also allows easier storage and transportation apart from the easy transformation advantage. This means when you need to move, you only need to break down the piece into components or a modular level. It’s easy to adjust and configure. For this furniture system, the only limit is your imagination. A Xylo Living Furniture piece can be perfect for smaller rooms and homes. If you’re moving to a dorm room for college, you can invest in the system and bring the pieces again when you move back home or get your own home. Moving to a bigger house? Get some more components and create larger furniture pieces.

The platform offers efficiency, flexibility, and sustainability. It’s definitely a smarter way to do home interiors as there won’t be any waste. Anyone can own this Xylo Living furniture and expect to maximize the purchase as you’re not only getting one piece. You can make more out of the platform and build something that grows with you. Xylo Living is all about flexibility, efficiency, and sustainability. Our use of space must be more efficient now and good thing there are furniture items that can fit or expand. The trend of modular furniture systems seems to be increasing and we can expect more similar platforms will be introduced.

Imagination is a requirement for intuitive creation. With Xylo Living, you can seamlessly make your own furniture as a solution to your personal need. You may never find that perfect furniture for your home but the Xylo Living lets you create a piece that grows with you and fits your style and your life.

Click Here to Buy Now: $750 $1500 (50% off). Hurry, exclusive deal for YD readers only!

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This sustainable, self-sufficient, prefab house can be flat-packed & it looks like a cruise ship!

When you can’t go on a cruise, you bring the cruise home – literally! The Sail House is a spacious, self-sufficient, nautical-themed home with a unique form inspired by large white sails on ships. It is designed by Los Angeles-based architect David Hertz who is celebrated for sustainable architecture. Sail House was also selected as the 2021 Architizer A+Awards Jury Winner for Residential/Private House!

Sail House has a central structure called the main house with several guest houses bordering it and all nestled on the lush Bequia Island in the Caribbean – didn’t I say it literally brings a cruise home? Since the Caribbean is a notoriously difficult area to source building materials, the team made sure that the entire project – the main house and the guesthouses – were prefabricated offsite, flat-packed, and delivered in 15 shipping containers. This ensured minimal site impact to the sensitive ecosystem and was nearly zero waste which is important because otherwise, the construction waste would have had to be transported out of the island which would increase emissions.

The luxurious home was named after its eye-catching tensile roofs inspired by the history of sailing on the island. “The main inspiration for the Sail House was a wooden boat with its masts and sails, the expressed stainless steel rigging and hardware, which is referenced in the home,” said Hertz. The roof membranes also act as a rain collection system by funneling water into a concrete foundation for storage. This nifty system provides for 100% of water needs and the air pulled from the stored water is then used to cool the space when needed. Additionally, the cantilevered roofline provides more shade and ventilation to increase cooling naturally. The electricity needs are covered by solar panels.

Both the interior and exterior of Sail House include natural construction materials such as woven palm, coconut shell fragments and surfaces crafted by Javanese and Balinese artisans. “Sustainability was one of the main goals of the Sail House project. The non-corrosive and termite-resistant aluminum structural system is wrapped in reclaimed ironwood planks recycled from an abandoned pier in Borneo, as are the plank floors, decks, and the vertical louvers that control low sun and prevailing breezes,” Hertz explained. It is truly one of the most beautiful, resilient, and functional homes I’ve seen that flawlessly balances luxury with sustainability!

Designer: David Hertz Architects

This flat pack folding fan solves your winter storage and summer heat woes!

Summertime is here. In fact, going by the raging heatwaves in the northern USA and Canada, this year is set to shatter all temperature records. Living in such sweltering heat, and as someone who starts sneezing after spending an hour in Air Conditioning, a fan is my go-to support system! But what do we do when the summers are over? That is the solution Jinsu Du and Kitae have created for us.

Meet the folding fan, a portable fan that can be folded and stored when not in use. The wireless aspect of the design is a big win in my favor – I hate carrying cables or have them dangling around my space. In fact, the portability of the design makes it perfect for carrying it outside the home, even for camping. The designers paid special attention to the foldability of the design – right from the fans stand to the fan head, you can adjust the fan as you need. This means that, for once, you won’t be adjusting yourself to the fan, the fan will follow you. The designers explain, “We had to contemplate a new type of design in order to effectively capture the structure. The shape, which is largely composed of three parts, has a simple and unique feel. The total color was designed in three colors, but initially white and yellow were released first.”

Sony’s Reon 2 created waves given its personal nature – which kind of makes and is sure to resolve all the thermostat fights. This folding fan is a personal must-have so I can stay as cool as I need to be without suffering from either frozen fingers or overzealous sweating. All the cooling comfort I need without any remote control tussles, this appliance is truly a summer essential!

Designer: Jinsu Du, Jimmy Sungho Park, and Sujin Kim for BOUD