This sustainable office building uses passive energy practices and promotes biodiversity with their green roof!

CABI is an international nonprofit committed to solving problems related to agriculture and the environment through fact-based scientific expertise, improving the lives of people across the globe– those who work for CABI needed an office that reflected their mission. Taking on the project, Scott Brownrigg designed a sustainable headquarters based in the UK that features a rolling green roof and encourages biodiversity through highly energy-efficient building practices.

CABI’s new headquarters in Wallingford hones in on passive sustainability as its main focus. The building’s location and orientation were specifically chosen to minimize solar gains, allowing for shade in the warmer months and plenty of sunshine during the colder months. To achieve natural air ventilation, the building dons a perforated facade, allowing cool air to flow throughout the interior day and night, and then heat recovery ventilation pre-warms fresh air during the winter months. While this means for maintaining natural airflow is energy-efficient and passively sustainable, it also works to keep office workers comfortable in the age of COVID-19, allowing for fresh air to enter the building throughout the day. While all the energy-efficient practices take place inside the building, CABI headquarters’s exterior promotes biodiversity through a living roof, attracting insects and birds to its sprawling green hills.

Scott Brownrigg firm director Ed Hayden describes a sort of symbiotic relationship between the building and its occupants that was achieved through, “A traffic light system [which] alerts users when the building gets too hot or doesn’t have enough fresh air. It will prompt occupants to open their windows and increase the levels of fresh air in the building.” CABI has come a long way since its conception in 1910, hosting close to 180 members inside its new, sustainable headquarters.

Designer: Scott Brownrigg

From the outside, CABI’s new headquarters appear as two rolling hills.

CABI HQ is filled out with floor-to-ceiling windows that dissolve the barrier between the outside and inside, bringing its occupants even closer to the environment.

Inside, office workers enjoy natural air ventilation through the building’s perforated facades.

Scott Brownrigg designed CABI’s new headquarters to merge seamlessly with its surrounding environment.

Situated in the middle of a manicured lawn, CABI’s location was specifically chosen to minimize solar gains.

A perforated facade allows fresh air to flow into the building throughout the day.

A traffic light system was put in place to indicate when the office could use some fresh air, signaling workers to open their windows.

IKEA + Apple redesigned their AR app, improving user experience and playing with your interior styling!

Two things were certain during the pandemic– we all redesigned our homes and shopped online…a lot. While some of us took this time to peruse IKEA and design the home that we’ve been planning for years, the rest of us took a riskier approach and just bought what caught our eyes. To help mitigate the embarrassing effects of buying furniture without seeing how it fits in our room, IKEA in continued partnership with Apple has given their AR app, now called IKEA Studio, a complete overhaul.

Previously called the IKEA Place App, the augmented reality app allowed users to position furniture even outside of the bedroom – landing sofas and armoires in distant factory lots and busy city streets. Nowadays, retail brands across the interweb are implementing AR apps into their online shopping experience– from sunglasses to makeup companies, consumers are more aware than ever of what’s headed for their doorstep. While IKEA largely started the AR app trend four years ago, since more brands are catching on, the retail tech company turned to SPACE10 to transform IKEA Place App into IKEA Studio, a reenergized and sensor-oriented AR experience.

Still operating in beta, IKEA Studio relies on LiDAR sensors in the iPhone to register and analyze rooms, allowing iPhone users to completely redesign their living spaces. Relying on iPhone’s LiDAR sensors to capture physical spaces, IKEA Studio captures complete 3D plans of the user’s living space including the measurements and placement of every piece of furniture from the window sill to the loveseat. Replacing their current furniture with white boxes, users can furnish their virtual room with new IKEA pieces, redesign previous color schemes, and then generate the final rendering in either 3D or 2D to export and share with others. Similar to IKEA Place, IKEA Studio still does not have a shopping feature so users have to exit the AR app to purchase furniture online or just fill up their shopping carts with prospective purchases.

Those interested in following IKEA Studio to its final stages can sign up for beta testing and start the design process as soon as they get approved. While the AR app is currently limited to a mobile application exclusively built for the iPhone, designers at SPACE10 are also envisioning a future AR experience that replaces the mobile application with glasses that users can wear to envision and redecorate their home spaces as they see fit, literally.

Designers: IKEA, Apple, SPACE10

With help from the iPhone’s LiDAR sensors, IKEA Studio captures and registers every piece of furniture’s exact measurement and placement within the room.

Additional functions within the app include features that allow users to redesign previous color schemes of living spaces.

IKEA Studio works by replacing old furniture with blank white spaces that generate virtual space for newly chosen pieces of furniture.

This Mars-inspired multipurpose building defies conventional architecture to ignite our imagination!

Seoul-based architecture studio Moon Hoon is known for designing whimsical and geometric buildings that take on unexpected angled roofs and contrasting color schemes. When a client asked him to create a residence that defied all traditional architecture conventions, Moon Hoon turned to outer space for inspiration. Mars is a multipurpose structure located in Hwaseong, South Korea that comprises three geometric blocks stacked on top of one another, almost appearing like a honeycomb gone wonky.

Mars is situated in the new urban development of Hwaseong, where its surrounding environment is still relatively vacant and flat, evoking a similar landscape to that of the Big Red Planet. The three slabs were initially conceptualized as a long mobile home, but the plans ultimately matured to form three independent floors stacked together like a conjoined 3D puzzle. Mars wears a brass frame that borders modernist glass panels and Mondrian-esque steel beams.

Inside Mars, Moon Hoon aimed to provide an illusory spatial experience where the floors were folded and the roofs formed angles to test the resident’s sense of gravity. Stacked together, each of the three floor provides different functions, creating “a small and symbolic universe where spaceships and planets mingle haphazardly, evoking some kind of strange universe,” as Moon Hoon describes it.

The first floor, a rectangular and open-air space, is devoted to commercial use for anyone to rent out and design as they like. Right above the first geometric block, two apartment spaces fill out the second floor, one offering three bedrooms while the other comes as a one-bedroom living space. The top floor, occupied by the clients behind Mars’s conception, is the structure’s loft. There, its residents can enjoy total flexibility in a two-bedroom penthouse with an observatory-like sphere that juts out from one of Mars’s side facades, resembling a purposely misplaced, miniature Pantheon roof or Boulle’s Sphere, further enlightening the structure’s ode to planetary design. 

Designer: Moon Hoon

When looked at head-on, Mars resembles a honeycomb gone purposefully awry.

The side facade features a Pantheon-like sphere that houses the loft’s living room.

Inside, Moon Hoon designed Mars to mimic a “strange universe” fit for spaceships and planets alike.

The underside of the structure’s folded and angled floors form the roofs of the floors beneath, creating an illusory spatial experience.

Sliding wooden doors open each floor up to flexibility and open-air living spaces.

The top floor is occupied by the clients behind the structure’s conception, where two bedrooms and various living spaces converge.

The Pantheon-like sphere resembles an observatory and enhances the structure’s tribute to planetary design.

This sustainable lamp is designed using discarded banana fibers!

I will never stop being amazed by how designers are pushing the boundaries by creating sustainable products. Nuclée is a lamp created from discarded banana flesh and it is….truly bananas! The French designer duo came up with the concept and produced it during a six-month residency at the National Taiwan Craft Research Institute (N.T.C.R.I.) in Taiwan.

The minimal lamp puts the sustainable material front and center with a bamboo circle around it to highlight it. Banana fibers from the plantations are usually considered as waste after the traditional extraction process and cast aside. However, the designers were intrigued by this. material and found it fascinating when working with a lighting design concept. After empirical research, they succeeded in stabilizing the plant tissue using a particular refining technique and after applying different pressure as well as heat parameters. This new material is highlighted by shapes of bent bamboo, inspired by the internal structure of the banana tree stem and that is how the form of Nuclée mood lights came to be.

“Settled near Hualien, on the east coast of Taiwan, the Kavalan aboriginal tribe is expert in the use of banana fiber: they make it their traditional clothing. I had the chance to meet them, to share their way of life, and to learn from their elders the ancestral techniques to use this plant. This new material is sublimated here in curved bamboo shapes, inspired by the banana tree structure,” said Dorian as he elaborated on the inception of his idea. The stabilizing process also gives it a color range from white to dark brown while enhancing the natural texture of the banana flesh.

After learning about these ingenious age-old methods of working with this plant, the designers used the process of extraction using only the outer part of the stem and other techniques to develop this modern sustainable lamp. Their experiments had them checking the material’s reaction to heat, cold, humidity, pressure, combination with other materials, and more to make sure it was actually usable in a wide variety of conditions. This also helps to break the notion that sustainable designs aren’t strong or long-lasting. Nuclée is also a project winner of the “Best of Year” Grand Prize (New York, 2020) and of the Green Product Award (Berlin, 2021).

Designers: Cordélia Faure & Dorian Etienne of ENSCI Les Ateliers

This flat-pack chair is supported by three rounded legs and requires no tools for assembly!

Developing unique, original ideas for chairs can be a tough ask– chairs have been around forever. Still, perhaps due to their rich, eclectic history, chairs supply an endless source of inspiration for designers. Adding his own interpretation to the mix, Yunjae Lee, a Seoul-based product designer has taken to birch plywood and CNC-milling to design and construct a chair with three rounded legs, requiring no additional tools or hardware for assembly.

Before assembly, Yunjae Lee’s Tri-Round Chair breaks down to eleven separate pieces– reminiscent of IKEA projects. From the looks of it, the eleven pieces of Tri-Round Chair have been CNC-milled to fit into one another like a 3D puzzle. The chair’s center support structure is comprised of two wooden pieces that rest on the ground, providing stability for the chair from the ground up. One longer beam intersects and runs perpendicular to those two boards to connect additional support side legs that cradle the chair’s main seat and backrest. The complex interlocking formation of the Tri-Round Chair ensures stability and a solid structure.

Tri-Round Chair is built from birch plywood that measures 18mm in width. By using thick pieces of plywood, Yunjae Lee was able to create a chair with rounded legs that can support the chair’s weight without any bending or the use of additional hardware. Through innovative, original design, each piece of Tri-Round Chair seamlessly connects with one another to form a finished product that feels familiar while giving the traditional four-legged chair new energy, and one less leg.

Designer: Yunjae Lee

By joining each separate component together, Tri-Round Chair finds support through a complex interlocking building method.

Symmetrical and round by design, Tri-Round Chair comprises eleven separate pieces of birch plywood.

Through interlocking and overlaid assembly, Tri-Round Chair is stable enough to carry weight.

Yunjae Lee painted Tri-Round Chair a darker shade of brown, a sophisticated new look compared to natural plywood.

Before assembly, Tri-Round Chair can be seen as eleven separate pieces, echoing what might appear as a project from IKEA.

This minivan-inspired cabin features a round roof and an open-air interior to allow increased interaction with the environment!

Imminent Studio and Grafito Design Studio have teamed up to create Dwelling Pod or D-Pod for short, a mono-volume residence inspired by the shape and form of a minivan and the functionality of modernism. While D-Pod hovers somewhere above the architectural category of ‘cabin,’ its design and aesthetic follow today’s trend of prefabricated ‘cabins in the woods.’

Constructed from concrete, glass, and metallic material, D-Pod is “based on the concept of lightness,” as Grafito Design Studio puts it, “where the separation of the ground is sought and lifted; its internal functional modules also use this concept of being ‘separated’ from the floor and ceiling.” In fact, D-Pod’s mono-volume nature makes it so that walls or dividers are unnecessary. Aiming to create an interior of spatial fluidity, the ‘rooms’ inside D-Pod flow into one another without the added impediment of walls or physical boundaries.

With transparent, floor-to-ceiling walls enclosing the entirety of D-Pod, the dwelling’s interior expands the visual space, dissolving D-Pod’s only walls into the environment that surrounds it. Conceptualized in the middle of a dense forest and mounted on top of a solid rock formation, D-Pod’s spatial fluidity, transparent walls, and air of modernism allow the structure to blend right into its surroundings.

Based on the form and shape of automobiles, D-Pod’s curved edges and mono-volume frame were inspired by the structure of minivans. While the rounded corners provide D-Pod with a distinguishable and appealing frame, its flat surfaces, roof, and floor fill D-Pod out with functionality and stability. Measuring 170m2, D-Pod currently stands as a concept, but everything from the pod’s inside to its outside has been planned for future developments.

Designers: Imminent Studio and Grafito Design Studio

With transparent, floor-to-ceiling walls, D-Pod blends right into its surroundings.

Glass panels can slide open and close to either entirely open up D-Pod to the outside or enclose it with transparent walls.

Inside, the lack of walls and dividers give D-Pod a mono-volume feel, similar to that found in a minivan.

With a wooden roof and transparent walls, D-pod is discreet in nature.

D-Pod is made of concrete, glass, and metal.

Come night, D-Pod shines like a lantern.

This cat kennel doubles as a cat tower and storage area with enough room for two indoor litter boxes!





For the most part, cats know how to take care of themselves. The only thing they can’t do is buy cat litter and tin cans filled with wet salmon puree or chicken. All they need is a tiny home to call their own and they’ll be set. Luckily enough, designers at PaiPai Pets created a sort of tiny home for cats to play inside of and where their humans can stow away the litter box.

PaiPai Pets’ double basin cat kennel is a cat tower and console storage cabinet in one. Looking at the kennel head-on, two wide doors border a narrower middle door, which opens up to the kennel’s storage unit and jungle-gym interior. On the left and right sides of the kennel, there’s enough space to fit two large litter boxes, which are always accessible through the middle door’s open porthole.

Behind the kennel’s center cabinet, storage shelves can be found where cat owners can stow away smaller items like cans of wet cat food and litter scoopers. Painted in bright white, with natural wood accents along the perimeter, the kennel can remain discreet even in busier home spaces like the living room or den. Along the sides of the kennel, smaller portholes allow for plenty of airflow as well as a fun way for you to play whack-a-mole with your cat.

One of the main reasons people stay away from adopting kittens and cats is due to the smell of cat litter and the hassle that comes with taking care of that– if only cats could take care of their business and its smell too. PaiPai Pets’ double basin cat kennel provides a way for you and your cat to have your tuna and eat it too. With enough space to house two litter boxes and all the feline accessories you might need, PaiPai Pets takes care of the dirty business that we wish our cat could.

Designer: PaiPai Pets

PaiPai Pets’ double basin cat kennel has enough room to git two full-size litter boxes.

When closed, PaiPai Pets’ cat kennel is as nondescript as any other console storage unit.

The middle door opens up to a shelved compartment area for smaller accessories like litter scoopers and cans of food.

While the double basin cat kennel features areas for two litter boxes, there’s also room for a play area in the middle.

The side panels of PaiPai Pets’ cat kennel feature circular portholes that allow airflow and an additional play area for cats.

Herman Miller’s latest office furniture range abandons the ‘cubicle’ and promotes social freedom

With changing times, social spaces need to change too… and it seems like Herman Miller has noticed that. As a world that’s slowly preparing to step out of their homes and go back to offices again, this unique window of time we’ve got is perfect to redefine productivity and how offices should look in this new future. Herman Miller’s OE1 series of furniture helps define the ‘new age’ office by creating a space that’s more conducive to co-working and socializing, instead of locking people in cubicles to make them more productive. The OE1 series brings an element of openness, dynamism, and fun to the workplace, giving it a unique facelift that definitely contrasts from the restrictive atmosphere created by working from home.

Short for Optimized Essentials, the OE1 range is “designed to help people experiment with space, discover what works in the moment, and change rapidly for the future”. It focuses on adaptability and on agility, by allowing modules to interconnect or separate, and work well both as a part of a team or as individual units… sort of like humans. The furniture elements can be scaled up, scaled down, or fine-tuned to create the workspace you need. Filled with basic forms and vibrant colors, the OE1 series has just the right amount of character to ad a minimalist yet vibrant touch to the workspace.

“The ideas behind OE1 predate COVID-19. The collection is the result of two years of development, driven by an international research project, in which the team interviewed everyone from office managers to sci-fi writers about the future of work. But as the collection came to a crest in 2020, amid a rise of remote work in response to the global pandemic, this future-forward design became a much more urgent one”, reports Fast Company.

“I often say with a mixture of pride and sorrow that Herman Miller invented the cubicle… probably envisioning a utopia, and it became something different,” says CEO of Herman Miller, Andi Owen. “We envision a future where [modular, flexible] furniture styles are the ones that are most dominant” Owen replies, indicating the demise of the restrictive cubicle, and the creation of what is referred to as an “unsystem” – or a series of individual elements that can be mixed and matched in a variety of ways, without ever really ‘going wrong’.

What’s immediately characteristic of the OE1 is that even as it creates separate, independent workspaces, it does so without putting the user in a bubble. People are still welcome to look each other in the eye, exchange pleasantries and ideas, and work as a collective whole instead of as individual cogs in a machine.

The Agile Wall [above and below] is a series of vertical panels that act as functional elements even serving as room dividers. The upper example showcases a wall-hung whiteboard that even has a soft-board attached to it, while below, a series of shelves helps functionally partition a space without visually creating a partition.

The OE1 series even relooks desks, with the Micro Pack [above] and a more traditional seating arrangement below. Each Micro Pack comes with an adjustable desk system, letting you choose between sitting and standing formats, while even organizing your cables into a central channel. Along with it all, the Micro Pack even lets you hang your bag or backpack on a hook placed right beneath the desk, so you don’t have to drop your purse on the ground when you sit at your desk.

For more traditional sitting desks, you’ve got OE1 Storage Trolleys that nest nicely under them, allowing you to cut the clutter on your table yet still have all your stuff at hand. The trolleys can be moved around as you shift workspaces, and can even be turned into stools by popping a seat on top, so you can have a quick conversation with your colleagues without dragging your chair around.

Ultimately, with the OE1 series, Herman Miller aims at building up the workplace by breaking it down. Plagued by the ‘cubicle culture’ that they themselves created, the OE1 is Herman Miller’s way of going back to the drawing board and redefining creativity and productivity in a way that is less bound by rules and is more accommodating of diverse work cultures. In a rather bittersweet way, it also takes into account the fact that workplaces may see downsizing, budget cuts, and migration to smaller office spaces. With the modular design of the OE1 and those innovative Micro Packs, Herman Miller hopes to create a workplace that fits ‘more into less’ while still “making [the workplace] as comfortable as possible.”

Designers: Herman Miller in collaboration with Kim Colin and Sam Hecht

IKEA x Sonos latest collaboration promises a budgeted, high-quality speaker disguised as a wall art!

I’m not a fan of traditional music systems. Yes, I’ve put it out there! Don’t get me wrong, I do enjoy music. What I hate is the trail of wires my Bose surround sound system creates around my rental apartment. And sure, there are a TON of wireless speakers that deliver performance, but watching the conceptual designs on Yanko Design has my bar set a little higher than usual. That is why the latest Instagram announcement by SONOS and IKEA has me truly intrigued by what it can do to my living room!

Everyone’s favorite furniture design brand IKEA has teamed with SONOS once again and what is promised are two new products at least. The first new product, as showcased filing, is a revamped version of the Symfonisk table lamp. It’s expected to be sold for around the same price ($179) as the original product. The second product is a piece of wall art! To quote the Verge, “The Verge has seen an early image of this product, codenamed “Titan,” but details about how it functions couldn’t yet be learned. Specifically, it’s unclear whether the entire artwork print is the product or if the speaker unit can be transferred between different exterior art housings.” Imagine this, wall art or frame that lets you display your favorite image, in your preferred print quality that plays soothing music, wirelessly! Historically, any collaboration between these brands has resulted in products that deliver value on multiple levels – be it the Symfonisk bookshelf speaker or the table lamp speaker. It carries the golden triage – form, functionality, and extreme versatility and modularity that comes with the budget-friendliness of IKEA. My toes are literally tingling from the excitement.

Personally speaking, the entire enterprise for me hinges on 2 factors – the variety of the pictures available and the second one is the price range. Let’s face it – a digital frame with multi-image displaying capacity is nothing new for us. What is new is putting together two of our favorite brands and their powerhouse research into creating a product that meets the needs we did not even know existed till we see it hanging on our wall. Now that, for me, is pure magic!

Designer: IKEA x SONOS

Photo used at the beginning courtesy Matheus Viana from Pexels.

Image of the SYMFONISK table lamp with WiFi speaker, courtesy IKEA.

Photo by Lasse Bergquist on Unsplash

Kitchen Designs that will be major inspiration for your dream kitchen goals!

Kitchens are one of the most important spaces in a home. We cook our meals there, and depending on how we perceive it, it can be a very therapeutic and relaxing space. Whether you’re cooking meals for your family or yourself, you will always manage to create some fond memories in a kitchen. In an ode to all these lovely memories, and to the many more you will make, we’ve curated a collection of elegant, aesthetic, and beautifully designed kitchens that will make you feel right at home. These kitchen designs could also serve as major inspo for your next kitchen makeover! There’s something in here for everyone.

Designed by Osome Interior Studio, the kitchen of the Osome Silver 87 is sleek and modern. Black tabletops, wooden panelling and greyish marble bar stools give it a deliciously dark vibe!

This kitchen design by BURO is rich and luxurious! It’s an eclectic combination of concrete, stone, wood and glass, creating an exquisite kitchen with beautiful detailing and precise attention to detail. Golden chandeliers add to the luxe aura of the kitchen!

The major attraction of this kitchen by Alessandro Isola is its mesmerising stone kitchen island! Carved wholly from stone, the kitchen island has a rustic and raw feel to it. The dining and kitchen areas are integrated, creating an open living space, accentuated heavily with stone and woodwork!

A mix of teal and black accent furnishings with light wooden cabinets gives this kitchen an intriguing mix of retro yet modern feels. Designed by Madeleine, this kitchen is perfect for those who want the best of both worlds!

Created by @melo_visuals, the white interiors of this kitchen utilise marble very exquisitely indeed! Inspired by winter, the kitchen is an open space wherein you can breathe freely. The contemporary wooden chairs perfectly merge with the delicate detailing of the marble.

An open-plan kitchen is difficult to merge with the rest of the house while making it stand apart. This kitchen is a part of a house built by a high school sweetheart couple who have detailed their journey of designing their dream house on IG under the page @ahousewebuilt. The underlying theme throughout the interior is a combination of earthy tones with black highlights to create a focal point.

Designed by Bia Hajnal, the showstopper of this urban kitchen is the beautiful wooden dining table placed in it! The table resembles a majestic tree trunk, adding a very natural and raw aesthetic to the otherwise modern kitchen.

Designed by POLO Architects, the kitchen of The Esculturas Project feels just like summer! Stone walls, reddish-orange wooden furniture, and wide glass windows create an open and fun space that makes you feel like you’re on holiday in a villa in Spain!

This Parisian-inspired little kitchen features a French range, hood, and cabinetry. They are all hand-made by L’Atelier Paris. It’s a sophisticated, warm, and wholesome kitchen space that you would love spending hours in.

This modern kitchen design by Edvinas Skiestenis is perfect for our modern homes! Matte black countertops, shelves, and cabinets manage to add a sleek urban feel.