EDC designs that will become your every day essentials: Part 4

Every guy has a soft spot for EDCs! Show them an innovative, one-of-a-kind EDC design, and they’ll be itching to get their hands upon it. You never know when an EDC might come in handy, these smart little tools can help you out of the trickiest of situations. You could be carrying an EDC for days with no real use until, in a time of need, it’ll magically come to your rescue, proving its true value! These little superheroes can make a world of difference while completing tasks. Hence, we’ve curated a collection of super unique, highly functional, and nifty EDC designs that’ll promise to have your back no matter what. From an EDC that simplifies interchanging keys between keychains to a revolutionary bottle opener, we’ve got you all covered!

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MSTR’s Linx ensures that interchanging keys between keychains will never be a headache again. Linx’s rather creative key-swapping approach isn’t time-consuming, requiring you to slide out a key by wedging your thumbnail into the keyring and rotating the key for minutes before it comes out, only to repeat the process, in reverse, for putting the key back in. Relying on a system that uses positive and negative shapes (think: jigsaw puzzle, or key and keyhole), Linx allows you to simply slide the keyring in and out of its holder by matching shapes (seen below), and sliding the keyring in or out in a manner that’s just extremely soothing to look at!

Designed by the folks at Typica, the HALO is, ironically enough, the most atypical bottle-opener you’ll see. Its very form challenges the notion of how bottle-openers should look and behave, although its interaction isn’t too different from regular openers, making it great to look at AND easy to use. Shaped essentially like a mini-donut, the HALO comes with a hole in its center that’s wide enough to have it fit around most glass bottles, giving it a place to rest when not in use. When said bottle needs opening, its hollow base is perfectly calibrated to slip into the gap between the bottle-cap and the rim, and the wide design gives you a good grip as you pop the cap off.

Meet the Tenuis 3 – a slim, durable, and Japanese minimal design wallet that is simple yet carries all of your essentials without bulging-up. It is no more thick (at 6mm) than your iPhone – accommodates 8 bills, 6 coins, and 4 business cards without crossing that thickness threshold. Even if you go beyond the normal capacity and fill Tenuis 3 with 20-30 coins, it will still be just 12mm thick, way better than an ordinary wallet that is fat with just the bare minimum stuff. The thinness is also attributed to the two parallel card slots that accommodate 6 cards in total while only adding to 3 card thickness as these slots don’t overlap. Even with 4 cards each (total 8 cards), the thickness is barely increased while other normal wallets make it way thicker with 8 cards in your possession. An ingenious flat zipper separates the coin-keeping section to keep the thickness to the bare minimum.

Provoke First Responder karambit knife by CRKT is one EDC you need to have in your arsenal for a tricky situation – whether you are stuck in a car with the doors locked out or when someone wants to steal your stuff on a lonely street in the dark of the night. The hawkbill-styled blade is the work of designer Joe Caswell, who’s known for his knife crafting prowess, and this has to one of the most intuitive knife design out there. With the pressure of the thumb, the knife is ready for use, and the ergonomic design means, it fits perfectly in your hand for the grip. Provoke is forged out of premium D2 steel and coated with black titanium nitride, making it ultra-durable and sharp for years to come. Even the opening mechanism is made out of superior material i.e. aircraft-grade 6061 aluminum for unmatchable toughness and deploys one-handed, like a claw!

The TACTICA M.020 Camping Tool Card is the novelty you want to always have in your wallet for the multitude of uses it brings to the fore. Ideal for adventure seekers who want to carry as little gear as possible, the multitool has a surprisingly great combo of minimal size (about that of a credit card) and more than 15 functions that come really handy for people who hike, camp, or go for an unexpected adventure quite often. TACTICA M.020 is made from a single-piece of super-tough Grade-5 titanium or 420 stainless steel (depending on the one you choose). Well suited for any tasks at home or in the outdoors this tool includes functions like – a sundial, screwdriver, rope tensioner with finger pulls, saw blade for cutting, pry bar, metric ruler for measuring, fire starter courtesy the removable ferrocerium striker rod, tent peg puller for camping in a jiffy, can opener for home use, and bottle opener for times when you desperately need one!

3.5 times harder than titanium, the strongest metal known to mankind, Tungsten Carbide is akin to black-gold in the EDC world. Give any gear a coating of Tungsten Carbide and it shines black like obsidian rock, with a unique metallic luster that’s glimmery in a subtle way… but more importantly, it makes them practically invincible, resisting any sort of external wear and tear. Pair it with Wingback’s series of exquisitely designed EDC and you’ve got the ideal combination of aesthetics and performance. Designed by Alasdair MacLaine, Wingback’s Black Steel collection sports three minimal-yet-functional products that are bound to be an unwavering part of your everyday carry. A bullet-sized Key Cache helps you store emergency money on your keychain, while a mechanical pen with its comfortable broad design promises to be the last pen you’ll ever want to use. Lastly, MacLaine’s 100ml hip-flask comes with the same cylindrical lathe-manufactured design as the other products in the series. With a refreshing baton-shaped design, the hip-flask is a pleasure to look at and to use, giving you the ability to store liquids in it as well as use it as a bottle opener.

 Designed to work as an extra pair of hands, an extra pocket, or a rubber-band that just holds things together, the do-op is a pretty useful little accessory that has a powerful set of Neodymium-Iron-Boron magnets at its very heart. The do-op, like all great products, began as a humble idea and subsequently evolved into something much more multifunctional. Designed during the pandemic, the do-op was first created to hold masks – because the idea of putting your dirty, bacteria-filled mask into your pocket didn’t sit well with some people. It involved sandwiching your mask between magnets connected by a synthetic fabric strap and then being able to suspend your mask by looping the strap around your belt loop or backpack strap or attaching it to a magnetic surface. Needless to say, once developed, the designers realized they had made something with a vast variety of uses. It could function as a mask holder, but also as a money clip, a tool holder, a cable organizer, keychain suspender, or even a paper-clip that worked on magnetic whiteboards. The simple design gave the do-op universal functionality.

More often than not we tend to put the bunch of keys stacked in a keychain inside our pocket only to discover later that the inside cloth is damaged. Moreover, carrying a bunch of keys around mars the whole organization aspect, leaving you confused when you have to open the main door of your home on a cold winter night in the pitch dark. So how about a cool key organizer that doubles just like any other everyday carry? Plus if it is super stylish and won’t hurt like traditional keychains brimmed with keys. This has to be one of the most compact key organizers that let you stack keys the way you want – car keys, bike keys, house keys – anything you carry often with you stays in your pocket in the most practical way possible. Named the Rhinokey EDC key organizer, it comes with loads of other multitools to get you through your general EDC needs. It can help you with screwing, prying, opening bottles, and wrenching when needed. Plus it has a bit holder, file, and ruler for those times when you just wish you had one of these tools. Very mindfully designed, the EDC key holder comes with a mini light to open the door lock in the dark without having to fish for your phone to do the task.

The Fold wallet is one of Lemur Design’s many single-piece-foldable designs and comes crafted from a single piece of full-grain vegetable-tanned leather. Its unfolded, flatform folds together in three quick steps, going from a mundane piece of leather to a feature-laden wallet that holds your cards, banknotes, and even your coins! The wallet comes with two access-points, allowing you to quickly reach your cards or bills via the main flap, and access your coins in their dedicated coin-pouch via a secondary flap.

The M1 Maverick Rail is Dango’s first all-metal wallet, with a precision-machined 6061 aerospace-grade aluminum frame. The wallet is characterized by a slim, robust design with 2 sides to it: An RFID-protected side for your payment cards, as well as an RFID exposed side for transit cards, library cards, and ID cards. The cards slide right into the wallet with a satisfying click, and the M1 Maverick Rail’s open-back design lets you easily slide cards out using your thumb. The cards are secured in place using a silicone band, a signature detail in all of Dango’s wallets. The band allows you to add as many as 9 (or even more) cards into the wallet’s enclosure, and the silicone + aluminum build allows the M1 Maverick Rail wallet to be water and weather-proof.

Sleek tech gadgets, including SSD’s, that make the perfect fun + functional sidekick to your laptop!

Honestly, I cannot survive without my laptop! The whole basis of my work life depends on it, as well as my precious documents, every significant memory of my life (thanks to the Cloud), basically everything makes me who I am. I’m not proud to say this but a crucial part of my day is spent typing away on it, but it is what it is. This is the era of technology and advancement. I’m sure most of you spend the majority of your day this way as well! So what can make our handy and dependable laptop, even more, handier and dependable? A range of innovative, functional, and nifty laptop accessories! So, we’ve curated a collection of interesting accessories that promise to elevate your everyday laptop usage experience – from super-fast SSDs to a multipurpose accessory with a 15-inch 4K touchscreen display, we’ve got you covered with a whole bunch of options!

Compatible with most USB-C devices, the HybridDrive offsets your need for multiple hubs, dongles, and drives. With a multiport on one end, and an SSD on another, and a USB-C interface connecting the two, the HybridDrive bridges the gap between your portable devices (laptop/tablet/phone) and your desktop – in the sense that it gives you extra ports and expandable storage… something most desktops have in common. The multiport setup comprises a 4K 60Hz HDMI port, two USB-A ports with 10Gbps data transfer, a MicroSD card reader, an SD card reader, and a USB-C which supports 100W of power output along with high-speed video and data transferring. On the other end of the HybridDrive is an SSD that comes in 4 sizes, starting from 128Gb and going all the up to a whopping 2Tb.

Think of everything you wish your laptop had and put it in a laptop accessory, and you get something quite like the Desklab. A combination of a 15-inch 4K touchscreen display, a hub with ports galore, and an external pair of speakers with hi-fi audio, this slim, lightweight computing accessory is cross-compatible across all platforms. It plugs right into your machine, drawing power from it while giving it much more in return. The anti-glare 4K touchscreen is an absolute heaven-send for photographers who want to edit on the go, content creators, freelancers, designers, gamers, coders, and anyone who just desires an extra screen, while the abundance of extra ports on the side of the Desklab allow you to connect MicroUSB pen-drives, while the HDMI port lets you add multiple displays. Heck, there’s even a 3.5mm jack because the guys at Desklab didn’t want to leave a single stone unturned. Given that speakers are always a weak-point for laptops, the Desklab comes with robust, hi-fi front-facing stereo speakers too, giving you an immersive experience, whether you’re playing a game, watching a movie, or just listening to a podcast or to music while working.

The designers of DGRule describe it as an “invisible hub” and I guess we can see why. The DGRule promises to be a convenient alternative to the limited Thunderbolt 3 USB-C ports since they aren’t always compatible with all devices. Subtle, discreet, and far from bulky, DGRule snaps onto both sides of the MacBook Pro. The cushion pad ensures it stays glued onto the laptop, no matter which position you work in. Available in Space Gray or Silver, it camouflages with your laptop, appearing to be a natural extension of it. Created from CNC aluminum, this allows the hub to comfortably merge with the MacBook Pro. However the resilient aluminum has other purposes as well, it lends its durability to the hub making it sturdy and reliable. The DGRule encloses two Thunderbolt ports on the same side, leaving the two others on the opposite end completely free. The invisible hub connects your Thunderbolt 3, HDMI display, USB-C, Mini DP, three USB 3.1, one MicroSD, SD, and your headphones!

UGREEN’s combination of a laptop stand and a multiport hub may just be the peanut-butter-and-jelly equivalent of the tech world – it just seems like a match made in heaven. Meet the X-Kit from UGREEN… a slim, portable Hub-Stand that folds down to become no smaller or slimmer than a selfie-stick. With its innovated X-shaped folding design, the X-Kit condenses its functionality into a form that’s easy to carry along with your laptop anywhere you go. Designed with two halves that separate when pulled apart, the X-Kit transforms from a slim, baton-shaped form into a broad platform to dock your Mac or Windows laptop on in mere seconds, with an angling mechanism that can be set at 4 different positions to give you the right angle you need to minimize fatigue… something that most WFH setups fail to achieve.

This MacGyverian briefcase is actually poised to be a photography must-have. Designed to boost productivity, save time, and help achieve finesse, the iWorkCase V3 16 is a laptop case designed for seasoned outdoor photographers. With space on the inside for a laptop, an external battery, and a hard-drive, the iWorkCase carries your laptop to shooting locations and opens out practically into a dark room of sorts to let you easily view and edit photos and videos just minutes after taking them. With an in-built laptop-stand and even a foldout sun-hood, the iWorkCase mounts right on a tripod to give you a makeshift editing studio when you’re shooting outdoors, letting you clearly view your media on a screen in the correct dark setting. Set up the iWorkCase with the laptop and connect it to your camera and you can instantly shoot view, and edit photos on the spot without needing to waste time (and lose out on creative ideas) by heading back to your studio/office to quality-check your work.

Now here’s an external numpad with some real purpose. Rather than just being your run-of-the-mill 21 key number pad, Voamoko’s Type-C Numeric Keypad’s design shows that it really knows and understands its end-user. The portable, external number pad plugs into your laptop or desktop, turning into a powerhouse of functionality. It packs extra USB ports on its rim to function as an accessible USB hub you can plug your pen-drives into, or even charge your phone with. Moreover, it comes with a few extra keys that let you instantly trigger functions like searching (useful for those incredibly long documents and spreadsheets), as well as apps like the calculator, to make number-crunching faster and more convenient. Designed for professional use, whether you’re an auditor, programmer, or analyst, Voamoko’s Numeric Keypad does more to enable your workflow than a regular number pad would. Plus, it can charge your phone too!

Meet the VAVA SSD Touch, a pocket-sized storage device that’s high on capacity, high on security, and on portability. Measuring less than 4 inches, VAVA SSD Touch comes with a sleek-looking metal case made from 100% recyclable aluminum, and a solid-state drive on the inside ranging anywhere from 512GB to 2TB in capacity. Its slick metallic casing is punctuated by a blue square located on the front that gives the VAVA SSD Touch a layer of biometric security. Acting sort of as a password, the fingerprint sensor prevents people from accessing your data without your authorization. The SSD only unlocks after it authenticates your fingerprint, and you can program as many as 10 fingerprints into the VAVA SSD Touch, allowing your family, colleagues, or coworkers to have access to shared data… or better still, use a password to ensure more impregnable security.

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Thin as a coin (barely 3mm in thickness), and light as a pen, the MOFT sticks to the back of your laptop almost like a cover of sorts. When folded, it sits flat against the back of your laptop (thanks to hidden magnets), practically indistinguishable and invisible, and when deployed/unfolded, uses a clever bit of structural engineering to support your laptop in not one, but two angle settings. Channeling Dieter Rams’ principle that Good Design must be Invisible, the Moft sits flat on the back of the laptop. It adheres to the laptop’s body using a reposition-able adhesive pad that allows the Moft to be placed on the laptop whenever needed and removed when you want (just in case you’re using a company laptop, or you’re upgrading to a new one). The Moft’s universal design means it can be placed on any laptop that has a flat base and can support as much as 18lbs of weight, thanks to its unique triangular load-bearing folded-out shape.

The Solo V2 is a small, portable USB stick that acts as a secure authenticator, replacing the need to remember passwords or look out for OTPs. The USB Stick comes in two variants, one with a USB-A jack and another with a USB-C jack, allowing it to work with laptops and desktops, along with older devices and newer devices. Each Solo V2 stick even comes with an NFC chip built into it, which means you can use it with your NFC-capable smartphone by simply tapping the phone on the USB stick to authenticate it. The key features reversible USB ports (so you’re never fumbling with it) and a touch-sensitive button to activate the authentication. It works right out of the box, without requiring any software installs, supports industry-leading FIDO2/WebAuthn standards, and instantly works with all major applications from companies like Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Twitter, and even with your Windows logon or GitHub repository. The device is robust, waterproof, and supports firmware upgrades that allow it to grow even more secure with time. Moreover, it’s portable, which means you can carry it anywhere and use it at home, your office, a café, or the airport; and doesn’t require any additional costs or interacting with your company’s disgruntled IT guy!

Vulcan isn’t a replacement for wireless charging but is just a remarkably better cable with truly unique features that are designed to work universally across all your devices. Designed to power everything from your Xbox controller to your laptop, the Vulcan cable comes with the ability to deliver up to 100W of power and connects to your devices using a series of magnetic pins. Just plug these magnetic pins into the charging ports of your devices, and they create an interface for Vulcan to snap to, quite like the MagSafe connectors you’d see in MacBooks from before 2016. Different magnetic pins allow you to connect the same cable to a variety of devices. MicroUSB pins work perfectly for gaming controllers and Bluetooth speakers, while the Lightning pin lets you charge the iPhone and your AirPods. There’s obviously even the Type-C pin, which works with most devices, including the iPad Pro, most Android smartphones, and even USB-C laptops. Once you plug the pin into its port, Vulcan does the rest, automatically locating, aligning, and connecting to the pin using a powerful pair of N52 Neodymium magnets.

Sleek and modern appliances to perfectly match the interiors of your millennial home!

Home appliances are essentials in our houses. We need them to carry out a variety of activities, from storing food to watching our favorite sitcoms, washing our clothes and even keeping us cool in the summer! Televisions, refrigerators, air purifiers, washing machines – these are a few appliances that you find in every home. However, they often tend to be quite hefty and cumbersome! And that isn’t a look that suits our modern millennial homes very well. Hence, we’ve curated a collection of sleek, minimal, and trendy home appliances that merge perfectly with the modern interiors of our modern homes. These designs promise to seamlessly become a part of your living space, without standing out and looking like an eye sore. They’re a visual treat to our eyes, and not to mention super functional appliances that we absolutely cannot survive without!

Inspired by the Dutch painter Piet Mondrian’s composition of form and color, the Mondrian setup was made to allow a wide range of applications and blend into any interior setting. The aim was to solve three issues we experience with watching TV as we currently do – taking up space, not matching with the aesthetics, and lack of expandability. Urban apartments and single-person households need to maximize their space and should not have to choose between a large appliance and furniture when they can have both. Talking about interior aesthetics, TVs are now increasingly slimmer while the furniture remains warm and cozy – this causes a visual mismatch when the two are put together. Mondrian’s design serves both purposes with one seamless structure. TVs are now being used in many ways and need to be able to adapt to the different content it supports, not just static pre-made products.

The Hide Washing Machine, as its name suggests, features a hiding door that helps it occupy a little less space when in use. In the event that your washing machine’s door ends up blocking a pathway if opened, or colliding with a pillar/wall/door, the Hide allows you to simply circumvent that problem by tucking the door right into the machine’s body. This results in a marginally wider machine, but here’s where user behavior comes into play… people usually buy machines after comparing measurements with their laundry rooms, but they don’t always account for the washing machine’s door and how it opens. The Hide’s door opens like any normal one, but then immediately slides into itself, freeing up your passageway so you can walk around and go about your laundry.

Unlike most switches that have an ON and an OFF, Pasque Mawalla’s Switch behaves slightly differently. Designed to be a lamp in itself, the switch rocks upwards, downwards, and rests in a neutral position. While in neutral, the light stays off, but the minute you rock it either upwards or downwards, it turns into an ambient lamp, casting light in the direction it’s been angled. What’s remarkable about the Switch is that it’s a different product with the same UX as its predecessor. Designed to be switched on and off just like a normal switch, the lamp explores new ideas, making it rather innovative. Plus, it only seems natural that the lamp should go off when the switch is in its neutral position, flush against the wall!

Designed by Difei Wang of Hisense Industrial Design Center, the Art Fresh Bar refrigerator is the first in a handsome series that aims to mimic the look of traditional furniture pieces. In fact, it’s not even intended to be placed in your kitchen. Rather, its ultra-thin profile and fine finishes are designed to blend in with your living room, giving you and the rest of the family easy access to all sorts of snacks, beverages, and one-off items like wine and fruit. With an anticipated selection of various finishes and colors as well as customizable compartments, there’s sure to be one to satisfy any taste or use.

This conceptual coffee machine is very unlike the espresso makers in the market and it’s the aesthetics that set it apart. It is a dream machine for people who love coffee and space exploration equally (like me!). The compact capsule shape makes it look like a moon lander for your counter and is obviously powered by caffeine which is only the second most powerful fuel after rocket fuel! The designer’s main focus was to retain some of the rawness and the mechanical steampunk look of the traditional Italian espresso makes while maintaining a clean shape that adds character to the product. There is a tubular water/steam container at the back which I feel can be extended down for added support for the appliance. There is also another container for your beans which I assume leads to a small grinder mechanism inside so you only get the freshest cup of joe each time. Overall, the shape is very unique and combines the nostalgic steampunk elements with clean, smooth curves for a balanced modern machine.

Just when you thought you’ve seen it all, we have another cool appliance to add to this list – say hello (from 6 feet away) to Drawsher which is the child of a washer and dehumidifier! Laundry is one of the most disliked chores and so it is no surprise to me that many of us just let the clothes be in the basket till we run out of fresh underwear. It may not be stinky or filthy, but it is certainly not the most hygienic practice because you are lettings the bacteria from the clothes spill into the air around you. Also, if you don’t air out your washing machine after using it, it can lead to molds and malfunctioning of the appliance. Keeping all these details in mind, designer Kikang Kim created Drawsher which is a sanitary machine that functions as a laundry basket and a washing machine. You’ll notice that it also looks good unlike any washing machine you’ve seen before, and that is because Kim has based the design on a modern dresser that optimizes space and blends well with your interiors.

C SEED, a company known to make high-end outdoor televisions, has debuted the M1 – a whopping 165-inch 4K MicroLED beast that folds up and tucks away right underneath your floorboard. Before you get any ideas, the television retails for nearly half a million dollars, so it’s safe to say that only a select few will be able to afford this bad-boy. It may be the world’s coolest party-trick, but imagine being able to summon a television from the underground as your guests watch in sheer astonishment. Hit a button on the remote and the floor splits apart, with this pillar rising from within the chasm. The pillar then unfolds into a wide 165-inch screen, perfect to watch the Golden Globes on. Fashioned with 5 display panels that open and close like a folding fan, the M1 television really knows how to make an appearance. Its elaborate structure features a base that the display panels lock into once they open out. This base also houses the television’s powerful speaker system, including two 250W broadband speakers and one whopping 700W subwoofer to really pack that punch. While those stats may be impressive to a few, it’s the TV’s design that really gets my heart racing! The M1 doesn’t come with a single folded display, but rather features 5 panels that can seamlessly merge together to appear as one singular panel.

Kim Hyunsoec of hs2 studio created ‘Crevice’. Crevice is a beautiful 900x1970x920 mm double door fridge. Inspired by the experience of drawing your curtains wide open, the handles of the double door of Crevice completely resemble the opening of a curtain! The neat slit with its widened edges facing opposite directions brings to mind the exact moment when you grab the corners of your curtain, to tug them apart on a lazy Sunday morning. Created from stainless steel and featuring a matte black sheen, the aesthetics of Crevice have been designed to complement the interiors of your home. More than an electrical home appliance, it gives the impression of a piece of furniture. The furniture-like feel it resonates makes it suitable to be placed not only in the kitchen but also in the dining or living area. Spacious from within, it is divided into four vertical compartments with six shelving areas, providing ample space for your innumerous groceries. Not only is Crevice a storage wonder, but we must commend the visual appeal it possesses. This is a refrigerator with style!

The difference between Löv and every other air purifier on the market is evident in the way it’s designed. The Löv does to air purifiers what the Nest did to thermostats. It comes with a sophisticated design that just beautifully blends into its surrounding decor, looking modern and artistic rather than antiquated and technical, and comes with a user experience that’s so simplified, anyone could use it. The Löv air purifier is a pleasure to use, but it’s also a pleasure to look at… and that’s a design direction most smart home product manufacturers try to take, be it Google, Amazon, Apple, and even companies like IKEA, that are only now entering the smart appliance market. The key to a well-made smart-home product is to not only realize its relationship with the user, but also its relationship with the space it’s in. The Löv looks quite unlike any purifier you’ve seen, with an aesthetic that embraces the minimalism of Scandinavian Design. Created to seamlessly blend into your home, the Löv comes with a soft, rounded form, and an abstract grille design that balances art and engineering. The grille pattern is inspired directly by natural details like branches and the veins of a leaf, becoming an ode to nature, the world’s own air purifier.

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Winter is on its way out soon, but you can keep it coming every day of the summer season, thanks to the atypical Lora. Unlike most air conditioners, Lora is not boxy nor an air curtain. It’s more like a pendant lamp that hangs from the ceiling and showers you with cool air. Adding a touch of ambient lighting to the mix (think Northern Lights), Lora goes on to showcase the fan speed, temperature, and air blast in correlation to mesmerizing twinkly lights. What I really appreciate is the attempt to break the clutter and give a new form to air conditioners. Adding lights and intuitive UI UX is just a bonus.

The Top 10 holiday homes that make for the perfect post-pandemic summer getaway!

I don’t remember the last time I jet-setted away on a vacation! This pandemic has caged most of us to our homes (with good reason though), and vacations seem like out of reach propositions. At a time when we could bounce off on holidays, I thoroughly enjoyed lazying by the pool in an exquisite holiday home! I love warm, open, and buzzing summer homes, where you can spend your days swimming in the pool and sipping on chilled Pina Coladas! In the memory of those beautiful summer days, we’ve curated a collection of exciting holiday homes that you can visit next summer (if the virus allows us that is)! Shades on, vacation away!

This summer house by @anti__reality reverses the roof to create space for a pool!  These architectural renders balance the fine line of mixing reality and inspirational design. Summer House is a coastal vacation home where the unique triangular roof can also be used as a pool. The one-floor structure would encompass 914 square feet (85-square-meters) with sweeping floor-to-ceiling windows to make the most of the view. The triangular layout of the house is made up of two core zones: a living space and a swimming pool. Inside, an external passage with a panoramic view of the seaside wraps around a multi-functional space that can be used as a living + dining area. The interior space can be configured to suit the needs of the resident with space available for a bedroom, a bathroom, and a kitchen. These cores can be used to create three small oval rooms, constituting the only permanent element of the interior. They can also be opened up entirely to create walls that enclose the interior space completely, creating privacy from the outside world. The cool part about this concept is the layout can be controlled via a mobile panel on the wall.

The Eibche by Shomali Design takes the cabin game to a new level by incorporating the best of Balinese culture, modern architecture, and cozy interiors. The elevated structure weaves concrete and bamboo into its design. The team has used locally sourced building materials – wood for the structure and a brick-stone combination for the foundation. The frame is then ‘cemented’ by concrete which brings in a hint of modern minimalist architecture. The designers chose organic materials in order to create harmony with the environment so Eibche showcases a lot of bamboo poles, woven bamboo, coconut wood, and teak wood in both the interior as well as exterior. The Eibche cabin has managed to blend the contrasting aesthetics of a tropical mood board with contemporary architecture and has not disturbed the delicate balance between them – it all looks like it was born from the Balinese land.

Located on a slight incline at the edge of a forest, Nerovnya’s secluded and spacious vacation home YORK house is the ultimate get-away we have all been crossing our fingers for! In adherence to his design philosophy, Nerovnya uses bare geometrical shapes in an unusual and unique manner, and this time he decided to make “a common gable roof” the star of the structure. Functioning as a beautiful holiday destination for huge groups of friends and family, YORK house comprises a three-story structure, incorporating four bedrooms with individual bathrooms, that can accommodate up to eight people or more. Each bedroom provides a serene view of the stunning outdoor surroundings, amped by the fact that the house is located on an inclined edge. Waking up to rays of the sun pouring into your bedroom and the view of the forest to bid you goodnight sounds like heaven on earth to me! The panoramic glass doors and windows slide effortlessly, merging the interiors of the house with its exteriors. Not to mention the multi-leveled terraces allow you to saunter out for a breath of fresh air without actually leaving the premises of the home.

The Lilypad is a luxury villa designed by Chuck Anderson and is anchored just north of Sydney’s Palm Beach. Anderson is a boat enthusiast so it is no surprise that he created a floating house! This beautiful Airbnb is also eco-conscious, it is completely solar-powered and is slowly helping us pivot towards sustainable travel. The exterior of the house is made from timber and includes an open living area, a wine cellar, a sleeping loft, and, of course, a bathroom (for all that wine that we will consume post quarantine on our holiday!). To feel fancy, you have alfresco dining (which means you can eat your food while enjoying the breeze and sun when going outside is cool again) and sunbathing area on the lower level which also boasts of an expansive terrace.

This conceptual glamping pod called Lara! The minimal circular cabin is a luxurious treat we deserve! One of Lara’s most exclusive features is a round patio complete with a jacuzzi and a lounging area. While the cabin is envisioned to be set amidst trees to provide privacy, the designer has added a handful of plants to brighten up the woody design of the patio. The white exterior contrasts elegantly with the lush natural location. The tiny cabin’s ground level hosts a sem-circular room with a modern fireplace – the ones where there is a slit in the stone for the flames! It also has a fully functioning bathroom, however, the provisions for a pantry or a small cooking space are missing for now. There is another small seating area just outside the room and the fireplace built inside is also shared by this space through the glass encasement. Even though the glamping pod is small, the sweeping floor-to-ceiling windows make the space look bigger while allowing for natural sunlight and ventilation.

The conceptual DESI House is imagined to be set in the serene Austrian Alps with expansive windows that truly add another dimension to the panoramic views. What stands out is the shape of its exterior, it looks like someone rolled a sheet of concrete around a pencil for a crafts class! There seems to be a main tall cylindrical structure with a shorter one enveloping it and “rays” moving from there in different directions that probably divide the mansion into different wings. The detailed 3D renderings show the luxurious features of the house like the infinity lap pool with a jacuzzi and a local vegetation garden that makes the roof come alive – literally. Even the sweeping windows arent in any primary shape form, they look like someone erased the concrete with strokes of a brush to reveal the Alps. The concrete is paired well with the wooden interior which is, of course, subject to change based on the imaginary residents of this house.

Finnish designer Robin Falck created an A-frame mirrored holiday house, ‘Nolla’. Literally meaning ‘zero’ in Finnish, Nolla was designed by Falck for Finnish renewable energy company Neste’s ‘Journey to Zero’ campaign, in an effort to build a world with minimal emissions. Functioning entirely on renewable energy, the cabin is located on the Vallisaari island, near Helsinki. It has been built entirely using sustainable materials such as local plywood and pine. In an attempt to encourage visitors to maintain a ‘zero waste lifestyle’, every element has been designed with the hope of not leaving behind any carbon footprint. Covered by mirrors and supported by wooden stilts, it excludes modern commodities. Nolla is powered by emission-free solar panels, and a Wallas stove that runs on Neste’s MY renewable diesel is provided for heating and cooking purposes. There is no indoor bathroom facility, but outdoor dry toilets are available at the Vallisaari port. Fresh water is also available there!

Believe it or not, Fold House is a reincarnation of a historic guesthouse that was lost to fire. PARTISANS breathed new life into space by designing a residential property that folds into the contours of a scenic hillside in Ontario. The two-story structure flaunts bold curves and is constructed from wood and steel that matches the topography of the environment. The Toronto-based architecture firm has centered its entire design around the swimming pool which is a poetic way to erase the memory of the fire incident. The star of the house – a zen pool pavilion – sits on the lower part of the hill with a sweeping 80-foot long by 10-foot tall sliding glass façade that immerses the property into the views offered by the natural surroundings. Fold House’s fluid form surprisingly hides a 90-foot steel structural beam that is responsible for creating the cantilevered canopy and giving the illusion of a  floating front pavilion. The roof is shaped like a wave and covered with a lush green carpet to provide natural cooling. This wave is visible inside as well as outside, kind of like an architectural ribbon that ties up the house. My favorite part was how the trough of the wave (lowest point) holds the external steel staircase creating a smooth slope in the white oak ceiling of the pool room.

The Tree House Hotel Room is structured to serve as hotel rooms, offering tourists the opportunity to connect with nature. “The project is conceived as a ‘slow down’ form of tourism, where nature and the integration of architecture within it plays the primary role,” said the architects Peter Pichler and Silvana Ordinasstudio.

Anthénea is a UFO-shaped water suite made in France by veteran designers, engineers, and naval architects, whose vision was to create a nomadic vessel for eco-conscious tourists. It was a project born from the dreams of Jean-Michel Ducancelle, a naval architect, who was inspired by James Bond’s floating pod in ‘The Spy Who Loved Me’ (1977). The 50 sqm pod has three living spaces – a living area, a sleeping zone, and a lounge area that features a 360° solarium on its roof for 12 people. All interior elements are entirely made from sustainable materials. Anthénea adapts to a wide temperature range (-30°C to +40°C) and its stabilizing ballasting keeps the seasickness at bay! Coastlines are often overburdened with tourism and Anthénea offers an ecological way to lighten that load while promoting sustainable travel which is our ultimate future.

Camping tents that meet all your modern millennial Glamping needs!

All of us have some fond camping memories from our childhood – snuggling into sleeping bags, roasting and munching on marshmallows, and giggling with our friends as we give someone a toothpaste mustache! Although times have changed since then, and camping has received a massive makeover and a new ferocious nickname – Glamping! Glamping is the new, improved and dazzling version of camping. Gone are the basic little tents and sleeping bags that we spent our nights in – luxurious tents, glamping pods, glamping cabins, and innovative campsites are all a result of the Glamping movement. So, we’ve curated a collection of super comfy, cozy, and advanced camping options that’ll have you itching to make your next getaway a Glamping one!

You can find these unique tents in the Borgloon forest in Belgium if you are looking for a safer alternative to the usual touristy destinations post the pandemic. In fact, it has gained attention only now when people are looking to camp outdoors because it is safer, won’t require you to fly, budget-friendly and avoids the crowds. Designed by the Dutch artist Dre Wapenaar, these ‘Tranendreef’ tree tents blend architecture and sculpture into one functional structure. The tent is suspended above the ground and basically hangs on the tree like fruit. The guests use a ladder to get inside/outside. It can host two adults and two small children. Originally installed as part of a public art project called ‘Pit’ (hence the avocado shape we assume) organized by Z33, it brought art into the public space of Borgloon. The designer also created ‘field furniture’ – seating, washing, toilet, and BBQ units to complete the camping site with the tents.

Camping and caravanning have always been about getting down to the bare necessities of life, living life on the road and at the mercy of the elements. However, New Zealand-based design and architecture firm W2 has decided to help amp up the experience! Their revolutionary trailer design, ‘Romotow’, the name an amalgamation of ‘room to move’ contains all the usual RV features but with an innovative 90-degree twist. With the press of a simple electric button, it swivels open, rotating at 90 degrees, to reveal an open synthetic teak deck. With this, it increases the living space by 70 percent, and the area can also be used as a party deck! Measuring 30 feet by 8.5 feet and offering 290 square feet of living space (the same as a lot of tiny apartments these days), the caravan comes along with a living area, bedroom, kitchenette, and bathroom, all with stylish fixtures and spacious interiors.

Get ready to take a beautiful virtual tour of the O2 Treehouse by Treewalkers that blend the best of our childhood imagination with glamping reality while keeping it all an eco-friendly experience! Treewalkers is one of the leading players in the world of treetop construction – they actually make treehouses that adults cannot reason out of. The treehouses have unique geodesic domes and can be connected to create entire villages. The houses are modular so it enables franchisees to start their own village setups with one or more units – this can be a sustainable hotel, unusual Airbnb getaway, or simply a camping site that offers a different kind of stay. The innovative modular lattice design is what makes this a flexible accommodation — while catering to the individual’s needs and it also allows them to customize details. The units come with a standard bug-proof outer socket, interior furniture, and canvas canopy roofing. As part of the franchise program, hosts have the option to open up their Treewalker to other hosts in exchange for points that can be used towards other stays – sustainable community tourism! There are many intriguing shapes but the most iconic one has to be the A-shaped floating tent because that is something we have all tried to create with a blanket in our living rooms.

Jupe is a portable off-grid shelter that flatpacks so you can pick any spot on the planet and pitch your tent. The futuristic silhouette is inspired by Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: Space Odyssey which explains the aluminum pole frame and glowing Firesist fabric exterior which also make it suitable to withstand different climate conditions. The mission was not to make a quick place to stay but to create a gateway to the outside world. It can be assembled in hours and gives you a 111-square foot space featuring tall ceilings, finished Baltic birch wood floors, a queen bed, and a storage area – think something right in the middle of a tiny home and glamping pod. The large entryway doubles up as a window for your chosen scenery which you can endlessly gaze at from your queen-sized bed. The shelter also includes a 200 amp hour battery and solar array with electrical outlets, USB charging stations, dimmable LED lighting system, and a private wi-fi network if you cannot be completely off the grid.

While looking at interesting campsites I found Culture Campsite which was designed by architects to be an urban oasis filled with quirky pods that will give you the escape you’re craving while not ‘wasting’ any resources or time! A team of Dutch designers and artists transformed a concrete parking lot in Rotterdam’s Delfshaven area into a sustainable urban camping ground making it more accessible for people. There is a range of cool architectural cabins to choose from and they are all built using upcycled and waste stream materials. The idea was to show not tell – this way people could experience living in a sustainable structure themselves and find that it can be incorporated into their lifestyle! The pods are all smaller than a tiny house but way more exciting than a tent because of their unique builds and each of them showcases innovative sustainable elements. Every cabin offers a special experience and my favorite one is the Val Ross cabin because it reminds me of the rocket emoji.

The minimal circular cabin is a luxurious treat we deserve! One of Lara’s most exclusive features is a round patio complete with a jacuzzi and a lounging area. While the cabin is envisioned to be set amidst trees to provide privacy, the designer has added a handful of plants to brighten up the woody design of the patio. The white exterior contrasts elegantly with the lush natural location. The tiny cabin’s ground level hosts a sem-circular room with a modern fireplace – the ones where there is a slit in the stone for the flames! It also has a fully functioning bathroom, however, the provisions for a pantry or a small cooking space are missing for now. There is another small seating area just outside the room and the fireplace built inside is also shared by this space through the glass encasement. Even though the glamping pod is small, the sweeping floor-to-ceiling windows make the space look bigger while allowing for natural sunlight and ventilation.

Designed to be portable, adjustable, and modular too, the Beluga easily transforms based on your needs. The tent accommodates two people, although its modular nature allows you to attach multiple tents to each other to create a large camping community. The tent comes with an inner enclosure, held in place using aluminum rods, and covered with an outer cover that helps properly shield you from elements like the rain or even the sun. To help extend the tent’s footprint, the Beluga even comes with an awning that attaches to the entrance, giving you a nice shaded ‘patio’ of sorts right outside your tent. The magic, however, lies in the fact that all these components, the enclosure, clad, and the awning can be used in a variety of ways. The awning and outer clad easily double up as two individual hammocks when you want, or a hammock with its own cover when you’re looking for some shade. You could even set them up as a roofed shelter away from your tent, or even use them as awnings outside your RV or caravan. No matter your camping setup, the Beluga adjusts to give you just the shelter you need… and even if you’re faced with inclement weather or a damp/muddy campsite, the tent itself comes with an elevated entrance, so water or mud never seeps into your enclosure.

This will sound lame but the Hanging Shelter (Hængende Ly in Danish) is actually the literal meaning of hanging out – you see it? It is a lot more than a hammock strung up on trees, in fact, it is a very unique accommodation that has been custom designed using traditional shipbuilding techniques. The enclosed treehouse is nestled 2.5 meters above the ground that offers 360-degree views of the lush green Genner area in Denmark. The only way to get in and out of the Hanging Shelter is via a basic ladder. The structure is constructed with steam-bent oak which forms the curved walls and floor – something that sets it apart from similar tents and is hard to miss! To give it a height there are eight additional arched wood frames that continue to shape the rounded walls vertically. The design team has used a thin, clear membrane to wrap the entire shelter in so that you are protected from different weather conditions and are still able to soak in all the natural greenery Genner has to offer.

The O’Reilly’s campground is nestled in Queensland’s lush Lamington National Park and is an example of how glamping can be eco-friendly if we make the right design choices! The project shines a light on architecture-inspired ecotourism with a fully functioning campsite equipped with all amenities. O’Reilly is different because it was created keeping sustainable building practices at its core so as to not disturb the pristine landscape but at the same time let guests be immersed in it. The campground includes buildings featuring a kitchen, common gathering spaces, a fire pit, and more. All the facilities were carefully constructed by consciously choosing to make it environmentally friendly – lightweight structures used sustainably sourced timber, an on-site sewer treatment to avoid adding waste to natural water bodies, collecting rainwater, having passive solar access, cross-ventilation to reduce power consumption, growing and preserving vegetation and more.

 

We all like a comfortable camping experience once in a while, or to be more millennial, a comfortable glamping experience once in a while! But what about our feline friends? Wouldn’t they like a warm tent to cozy up into? I mean maybe they haven’t ever thought of it…but I’m sure they would enjoy it! Well, the Cat Camp is here! And it’s a mini indoor tent, especially for our cats. It’s quite similar to the mini display tents seen in outdoor shops, and it’s exactly like the larger tents for humans except its tiny…and cuter! 21.5 x 21.5 x 14 inches in size, the Cat Camp is spacious enough to accommodate almost all breeds of cats. A side-zip makes it extremely easy to enter, and it pitches just like a normal tent. Durable and high-quality materials were used to create the tent, ensuring it can withstand your pet’s sharp claws and teeth! Layered with microfiber fleece, the tent is fluffy and warm. You can easily remove the lining whenever it needs cleaning.

Kitchen appliances that promise to make your morning routine fun, fast, and hassle-free!

Mornings are probably the most hectic part of our daily routine! You have to get up, dress up, make breakfast for yourself (or others if you don’t live in a single-person household), prep your meals for the day, and basically, ensure your day kickstarts on an efficient and smooth note. The most important meal of the day is breakfast, and honestly, it’s the meal I’m the laziest and least enthusiastic to prepare. I’ll just grab a cup of coffee from my fav barista, thank you very much! However, I am making more efforts to ensure I have a healthy and balanced breakfast every morning, and a set of handy kitchen appliances that perfectly meet my breakfast requirements make my mornings much easier! So, here are a collection of nifty kitchen gadgets that are sure to help you start off your morning in the most fun, hassle-free and efficient manner possible.

This conceptual coffee machine is very unlike the espresso makers in the market and it’s the aesthetics that set it apart. It is a dream machine for people who love coffee and space exploration equally (like me!). The compact capsule shape makes it look like a moon lander for your counter and is obviously powered by caffeine which is only the second most powerful fuel after rocket fuel! The designer’s main focus was to retain some of the rawness and the mechanical steampunk look of the traditional Italian espresso makes while maintaining a clean shape that adds character to the product. There is a tubular water/steam container at the back which I feel can be extended down for added support for the appliance. There is also another container for your beans which I assume leads to a small grinder mechanism inside so you only get the freshest cup of joe each time. Overall, the shape is very unique and combines the nostalgic steampunk elements with clean, smooth curves for a balanced modern machine.

Designed by Difei Wang of Hisense Industrial Design Center, the Art Fresh Bar refrigerator is the first in a handsome series that aims to mimic the look of traditional furniture pieces. In fact, it’s not even intended to be placed in your kitchen. Rather, its ultra-thin profile and fine finishes are designed to blend in with your living room, giving you and the rest of the family easy access to all sorts of snacks, beverages, and one-off items like wine and fruit. With an anticipated selection of various finishes and colors as well as customizable compartments, there’s sure to be one to satisfy any taste or use.

Mitsubishi’s Bread Oven is in a league of its own with a promise to serve you ‘the perfect toast’. Mimicking a waffle maker, the toaster looks like it’s come straight out of the ’80s with its retro-esque veneer brown look. Built with a sealed thermal-insulated structure, it can toast your bread without releasing any moisture, ensuring the bread is soft, fluffy, and far from being dry. The metal box is equipped with two plates that can go up to temperatures as high as 500 degrees Fahrenheit. These plates seal the slice of bread, transferring heat to it, and in turn make magic. The electric toaster is amped with four cooking settings; Toast, Frozen Toast, Topping, and French Toast. Select your cooking setting, along with the thickness of your bread (options are 30 mm/1.1″, 24 mm/0.9″, 20 mm/0.7″, and 15 mm/0.5″) and you’re almost good to go!

Made from heat-resistant and food-safe plastic, the Egguins are an innovative way to store, boil, or serve eggs. The hollow penguin shape allows you to slide eggs (both small and large) into it, completing it visually and making it look like a flock of Emperor Penguins ready to dash right into the water (the visual metaphor of connecting the egg, the bird, and the water is just perfect)! Immerse the Egguins into a saucepan of boiling water using the handle above, and just lift them out when you’re done boiling them to the softness or hardness of your choice. More of an omelet or a sunny-side-up kind of guy? You can use the Egguins to innovatively (and adorably) store your eggs in your fridge. Penguins do enjoy the cold, don’t they?

Shaped like a stainless steel handbag, Jacqueline is an electric tea kettle that comes with Bluetooth connectivity, allowing users to monitor and set the perfect heating conditions for boiling water. Unlike typical electric tea kettles that require just a measly flip of a switch, Jacqueline is laden with smart technology to assure users that a flavorful, hot cup of tea is always just a few moments away. Ditching the light switch, for a smart handle, Jacqueline comes with an interactive, digital display screen that indicates each brew’s water temperature and level as well as a signal that shows whether or not the kettle’s been turned on. In addition to this display screen, Bugatti boasts that Jacqueline can pair with your smartphone or tablet through Bluetooth, allowing users to operate Jacqueline from a distance through Bugatti’s accompanying app, Bugatti B Chef. Whether you’re reading for hours on end in bed or heading home from a day spent in the cold, with Jacqueline a hot cup of tea can always be waiting for you.

Designed with flexible catering in mind, Multiplug brings a new and welcomed element to social dining! Whilst one day we might just be cooking for ourselves and our partner, the next may see the entire family coming together for an occasion, at which point just the one hot plate doesn’t stretch very far! Multipleplug’s flexible design allows for up to five of the devices to be connected together at any one time! Daisy-chaining the hotplates means that the food is within reaching distance of everyone on the table… perfect for those large social gatherings that we love!

Foods spoil/age either by being exposed to bacteria in the air or by oxidizing in the presence of, well, oxygen. By eliminating air out of the equation, the Freshy! vacuum lids help significantly slow that process down. The Freshy! vacuum lids are a set of universally fitting circular lids that turn any regular bowl, mug, can, or container into a vacuum-sealed one. Armed with a handy pump that can create a vacuum within the container in just 5 seconds, Freshy’s glass lids sport a silicone-sealant that helps keep food fresher for longer by increasing their shelf life by as much as 700%! This means cooked meals and leftovers can last as long as 10 days, fruits as long as 2 weeks, cheeses for nearly two months, and your favorite coffee grounds for as long as an entire year. The lids sit flat on any container/vessel with a smooth circular rim, and the pump immediately creates an impermeable seal while removing all the air from inside the container.

I can’t begin to tell you how stressful poaching an egg is to the amateur cook. Every chef has their own technique which requires a fair amount of expertise. Some do it in a microwave, some swirl the water before they put the egg in, and some use tea strainers or cups to introduce the cracked egg to boiling water… and while each chef has their own poaching lifehack, none are as easy (and easy-looking) as using OTOTO’s Eggland poacher. Designed as a pool-tube that floats in water, this food-grade silicone device makes poaching eggs absolutely stress-free. Just place the Eggland in almost-boiling water, add a few drops of oil, and crack the egg right into its cavity. The egg looks like it’s lounging away, while the hot water below it cooks it to oozy-yolk perfection. Pull the device out by the handle that’s modeled after an inflatable palm tree, and flip the egg over your ham and cheese sandwich to upgrade it to an absolutely divine Croque Madame sandwich. Now THAT’s what I call a breakfast of champions!

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The Crunch Cup is just the kind of invention I’d expect from a mad scientist who wanted to have a wholesome breakfast while rushing to work. For years we’ve been able to carry coffee, tea, juices, and milkshakes around with us in flasks, but having cereal on the go has always been that elusive concept that nobody bothered to crack… until now. That’s where the Crunch Cup is trying to change the game. The first cup that’s designed to have cereals while on the move, the Crunch Cup comes with double-wall construction and a double-mouthed lid to match. Made of an inner and outer container, the Crunch Cup holds both parts of the milk-and-cereal combo separately, keeping them away from each other so you’re not left with a soggy mess. The inner container holds the cereal of your choice, while the outer container is for the milk of your choice. A two-piece, double-mouthed lid sits on top, allowing you to take a sip of your milk and a crunch of your cereal at the same time. The cereal remains crunchy because it isn’t soaked in the milk until it reaches inside your mouth, and the lid itself can be closed so that you can take your breakfast with you on the go, taking a sip/crunch every 5-10 minutes whenever you feel like.

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TidyBoard was designed to encourage healthy eating and turn it into a sustainable lifestyle change instead of a trend (looking at you, juice cleanse!). It streamlines your prep with strategically placed strainers, catches, and containers on the end of the cutting board so there is more to eat and less to clean. It keeps food and scraps separate and allows you to strain hands-free. When you are done with the chopping and cutting, one swipe of your hand will clear it all. TidyBoard is constructed from bamboo which is antibacterial and durable enough to last for years making the wear and tear worth the effort. Bamboo also makes it lightweight and eco-friendly. “The TidyBoard was mindfully influenced by math and physics. Our board is engineered as a lever to stay steady even with a heavy load in the containers,” says the team. It makes your morning meal-prep routine swift, efficient and hassle-free!

The Top 10 winter cabins that provide the perfect architectural escapism!

Though winter is far from around the corner, I do love fantasising about snowy skies and chilly weather! It’s my favorite time of the year, something I look forward to as the months pass by. And just thinking about a winter getaway gets me all jazzed up! Anytime, anyone proposes a quaint getaway during Christmas break, I’m the first one packing my bags. Bundled up in coats, and sipping on hot cocoa in a little cabin in the woods, with swirls of snowflakes fluttering outside the window, is my idea of an ideal vacation. As an ode to past and future winter getaways, we’ve curated a collection of cosy, comfy and super cute winter homes that’ll make for the perfect holiday destination this coming winter. Make your plans and be ready to book your tickets, because these spaces will definitely be at the top of your holiday bucket list!

Algorithms helped design the shape of this Japanese holiday retreat! Designed for idyllic Hokkaido in Japan, the YEZO is a retreat that uses its dramatic landscape and an experimental design approach to create a sanctuary in nature. The YEZO’s overall design is a fusion of both aesthetics and algorithms, optimized for fabrication from one single mold to minimize ecological impact and reduce manufacturing cost and delivery time. It features a unique curved roof that not only creates a spacious interior but even provides a channel for the central chimney while creating a small terrace/skylight in the process. The wooden roof shell structure, clad with regional black slate, consists of sustainable GluLam (glue-laminated) timber beams suspended from a central concrete chimney. “YEZO’s curved GluLam beams are carefully shaped to operate in pure tension throughout, resulting in weight and material reductions of 90% compared to straight beams”, say Kristof and Julien, the designers behind the award-winning retreat. The YEZO Retreat is a winner of the Golden Pin Design Award for the year 2020.

Studio Puisto, a sustainable interior design studio based in Finland, recently debuted the first prototype of cabins soon to be part of a larger hospitality project called Kivijärvi Resort. The resort’s first completed cabin is called Niliaitta, which refers to the traditional storage structure built at the end of a high pillar, used by the Sámi people to store food and equipment, keeping it safe from the grasp of hungry or curious wildlife. In order to immerse guests of Kivijärvi Resort in the elements of nature as safely, but also as close as possible, Studio Puisto installed a floor-to-ceiling window that stands some distance from the cabin’s deep gable roof. From Niliaitta’s front-facing window, guests enjoy the most dominant landscapes as the cabin’s location was purposefully selected to offer the most unobstructed views of Finland’s forest and nearby body of water. The cabin itself is painted twilight black to disappear into the darkness come night, but the warm, wooden panels that line Niliaitta’s interiors provide a cozy refuge that glows with relaxed, ambient lighting.

FLEXSE is a prefabricated micro-dwelling solution aka tiny house designed to adapt to ALL seasons, so even if winter wonderland is not your thing, this cabin will certainly be. The cozy modern structure is constructed entirely from 100% recyclable materials and can be assembled in parts on-site or positioned on foundations, allowing it to be set up in remote areas, the countryside, or even on water. Since the construction industry is responsible for more greenhouse gas emissions than aviation (12% vs 2% – can you believe it?), it is wonderful to see an all-season eco-friendly house. The first prototype was a small BBQ shack intended for cooking and then the team made sure it could be tailored for different purposes too – like a sauna, a guest house, a home office, and more. This eventually led to FLEXE being a complete tiny house. One of its most distinct details is the circular window which almost makes the house look like it has the most elegant monocle with a periscope-like view.

Attention all automobile fanatics…and design enthusiasts! If your love for automobiles and architecture has never met before, well they have now in Chris Labrooy’s Winter Cabin. Labrooy wedged the classic Volvo 240 into a quintessential cabin. The Volvo 240 was a vintage wonder, though long and slow, it was considered the ideal family car. Honest and dependable, the 1974’s car became a member of a number of households. Hence it’s no surprise that Labrooy merged it with an adorable little red and white cabin, perfect for those family getaways during the winter vacations. However, Labrooy’s version of the car comprises of two Volvo 240s combined together, creating an inverted mirror image. Slide the structure into a cabin, and you have a quirky architectural concept perfect for all those vintage automobile lovers, who want to take a trip down memory lane!

The minimalist yet luxurious pod is nestled in the Dents-du-Midi mountain range of Switzerland and has been inspired by Japanese design and elements. The dome is created using a combination of natural materials and sustainable construction keeping it aligned with the hotel’s goal of maintaining spiritual harmony with the delicate alpine ecosystem. To minimize environmental impact, architects raised the pods on platforms and left the surroundings mostly untouched. The eco-pods are perched on an elevated, stadium-style deck giving guests private and unobstructed views of the stunning landscape from almost every angle. The Zen Suite’s central circle is enclosed in curved wooden walls and Japanese-inspired accents like tatami floor mats. The pod itself measures 150 square feet with an additional 220 square feet provided by the connected terrace. The eco-pods, bath box, and platforms are all prefabricated.

This particular hotel almost reminds me of the bunny slope aka level 1 ski slope which really makes it stand out as a winter hotel while naturally blending in its surroundings. Hotels like this usually do better in one season, so their form is more unconventional to make the stay as unique as possible given the niche audience it serves. The gently sloping roofs make it one with the mountains and the top-to-bottom glass windows bring the natural beauty in. An architectural build like this stands out without having too many elements – simple additions like the windows eliminate the need to brighten or add too much decor inside because the surrounding doubles up as the aesthetic.

Stilts keep this small winter cabin elevated above a snow-laden slope in Quebec to protect an outdoor lounge sheltering beneath its base with a warming stove by Delordinaire founders Adrian Hunfalvay, Erwan Lêveque, and Jean Philippe Parent. “This winter chalet uses the stilt typology to create a protected ground floor area with an outdoor stove, providing an unusual space where residents can be amongst nature and the snowy exterior, while still enjoying protection from the elements.”

Winter is slowly revving up and, since quarantine kept us inside from enjoying the usual social perks of summer, we’re all hoping to find ways to make the most of the upcoming snowy season. Recently, new architectural ventures have led to the creation of prefabricated cabins, which very possibly might become winter’s saving grace in the age of COVID-19 Prefabricated cabins such as GROVE CAB, designed by Valerii Shcherbak, help make nature getaways feel a lot cozier and all the more accommodating. This new type of architecture is garnering a lot of popularity in Europe and it’s no surprise. Prefabricated cabins are constructed prioritizing simplicity and modularity. Being that Shcherbak’s cabin is built from wood material and sturdy paneling, each component of GROVE CAB is designed for familiar and intuitive construction, and the light, natural wooden tones help open up each room. The cabin comes in two modules: the first containing a living room or recreation area and your bedroom, and the second comes with a kitchen, bathroom, and exterior patio. The two units are connected where the frames for both of the module’s hallways meet, which creates a space that feels like a one-bedroom home.

Condon Scott Architects utilized Passive House construction to bring Kirimoko to life. Passive House is a fundamental concept that provides indoor, thermal comfort by using energy sources of heat from inside the building. This construction concept requires solid, high-level insulation, and airtight design. Describing the details of the home’s build, Condon Scott says, “With a combination of Passive House measures and structural insulated panels, virtually no additional energy is required to maintain a consistent level of thermal comfort against the backdrop of the unforgiving Central Otago climate.” The builders installed structural insulated panels for the roof and walls of Kirimoko. SIPs are ideal for prefabricated structures because they maintain a solid foam center and are exceptionally airtight, requiring no thermal bridging, which is a form of heat transfer and a major source of energy loss.

OFIS Arhitekti worked with local structural engineers CBD to develop the Kanin Winter Cabin, which is designed to resist extreme weather conditions on its exposed site on Mount Kanin. This tiny 9.7-square-meter cabin has a narrow floor plan containing three shelf-like floors and has dimensions of just 2.4 by 4.9 meters. It is made from a combination of cross-laminated timber, glass, and aluminum panels.

Bring your interiors to life with these inspirational table designs!

Tables are an essential piece of furniture in every home or office. Whether it’s one to work upon, eat on, or place your favorite knick-knacks and souvenirs upon, tables are pretty much irreplaceable. Tables have different genres within them, from coffee tables to dining tables to desks to work upon, there’s a table for your every need! However, designers have been adding modern twists and turns to this ordinary everyday product! The result is innovative and unique table designs that cater to your various needs in an interesting and fun manner. From a modular extending tea table to a coffee table that doubles up as a planter, we’ve curated a collection of table designs that are a far cry from the usual ones. You won’t be able to stay away from these designs for long!

Tea time is significant in many Asian cultures, it is a moment of pause in the day where one can enjoy a peaceful moment of solitude or socialize and relax with friends. Tea time is a beautiful ritual in Japanese culture and Hasu is a tea table inspired by that zen practice. Hasu transforms itself as the tea ritual progresses making it a contemporary piece of furniture that still pays a tribute to the process. It starts as a minimal compact structure and ends as a complete furniture set for tea time. Hasu’s design allows storing an extensive tea collection while presenting it in a unique and clean manner – it is almost like you can fold or unfold the tea time ritual like origami. There is a lot of storage for all the objects needed for tea rituals and the table allows you to present them one by one during tea time, it is all on-site so everything is handy as well as neatly tucked away. The unfolding of the four upper tabletops marks the beginning of the tea time ritual. Extend the seating to four guests by simply pulling the floor chairs from the table. Even when it is not in use, it still upgrades the space as an abstract piece.

In an unusually beautiful case of nature-inspired design, the Elytra table by Radhika Dhumal expands in size by ‘spreading its wings! The table comes inspired by beetles and the way their wings nest perfectly around their body. The table itself comes with perfectly natural bug-like proportions that fit in well as garden decor and uses two ‘wings’ to expand in the surface, much like the beetle. Elytra’s design is dominated by rounded forms that give it a friendly, pet-like demeanor and feature four legs that are positioned in a way that gives the Elytra its unique, animalistic stance. The table’s surfaces are split into four broad parts, including a wooden ‘head’ and ‘body’ as well as two glass-inlay wings that can be opened out to expand the table’s surface to store an extra few cups of tea, a planter, or two, and perhaps a notebook to doodle your ideas on!

More people are moving into cities, which means that access to home gardening is decreasing since natural light is harder to come by and smaller apartment spaces, like efficiency studios, are preferred. Thankfully, SOLE’s coffee table was designed to take up as little space as possible in order to fit into even the smallest of studios. Indoor urban gardening is usually practiced by using grow box containers that require a lot of window ledge space and natural sunlight – both of which can be hard to come by in city apartment searches. In order to make home gardening possible in any city-living space, SOLE maintains the perfect climate, temperature, and nutrients for you and your chosen plants so long as they fit inside the coffee table’s extensive body. While researching the influence of temperature, exposure time, intensity, color from visible light, along with the distance and angle of light distribution, the designers behind SOLE decided to incorporate a lighting system that would enhance plant growth by imitating the effect of the sun’s rays have on indoor plants.

Alright, who is ready for a table that looks like art and does not come with a frustrating IKEA assembly guide? Because Boston-based designer Mian Wei has created this beautiful piece of furniture that marries minimal aesthetic with cultural heritage. The Dougong blocks from ancient Chinese architecture play a central role in the build and concept of the grid table – think of it as an advanced Lego challenge! Mian Wei won the Silver A’Design Award for this grid table in the homeware and furniture category, showcasing his exceptional skills as a multimedia artist who brings to life ideas that blend industrial design and emotions seamlessly. This is a no screws assembly – yes – there is no need to keep a track of the different screw sizes and the tiny anvil! The grid table relies on the ages-old Dougong method of interlocking blocks so effectively that it not only distributes weight evenly but also lays a strong foundation while experiencing history. The supporting structure (Dougong) is made of modular parts that can be easily disassembled and reassembled in need of storage and moving. The bracket connectors (Gong) slide easily into the beams (Dou) to form the weight-bearing structure and retain structural integrity when the table is being lifted. It is made of ash, maple, and plywood which brings tone and texture ‘to the table’ (I just had to take that opportunity!).

The rustic, artist-in-studio appeal of DUAL hits home with the wooden chair’s natural pine finish and stainless steel stool attachment, offering a finished look that is both familiar and clean. The overall function of the chair is relatively easy to understand. When the stool attachment is stacked on top of the chair, the backrest can rise to its highest position to offer optimal support for your posture. The chair’s seat comes equipped with notches that coincide with and frame the stool attachment’s legs for easy stacking and the extra space between the chair’s seat and the stool attachment also functions as storage space for things like your laptop or lunch bag. In order for the user to transform the chair into a desk setup, complete with a table and chair, then the stool attachment simply slides into the largest cavity on the chair’s seat. With the stool attachment securely positioned in front of and attached to the chair, the backrest also slides down to meet the user’s new seated height.

The Lido looks like any innocuous table or kitchen-island, but give it a few adjustments and you can increase its area threefold. Made from oak (although it could just as easily be made in any other type of wood), the Lido uses hinged side panels to expand in size whenever you’re expecting extra company. Just lift the panels up and a mechanism causes an extra pair of table-legs to pop out too, giving you a stable table (I’m a poet and I didn’t even know it). Perfect for smaller apartments, the Lido comes with a relatively low physical footprint but gives you the ability to swiftly and easily expand when you have guests over.

Based on the geometry of an octahedron, the Clover Table by Peter Nasielski comes with a metal frame, a central tabletop surface, and three wooden leaves that fold outwards to expand the table’s surface-area by 400%. The Clover Table’s expanding design is uniquely appealing because of two key elements… One, the fact that the table’s design doesn’t focus on its space-expanding nature… the Clover Table looks like any chic, minimalist table when closed. And Two, the way the Clover expands is so simple and fun, it gives it a positive interactive element that’s useful and worthy of showing off! Perfect for small apartments, balconies, or backyards, the Clover table gives you the convenience of compact size along with the flexibility of expanding it when friends come over… and who knows, its clover-inspiration may bring it some luck too!

Recognizing the multiple issues that arise with artists, specifically designers, and their desks, Long Chan constructed Lift, a desk that can adjust to meet your needs. From the right angle, Lift almost appears like a heavy-duty, oversized wooden TV tray table, but looking at it head-on, it’s rectified as the designer’s workstation. While my days spent eating chicken noodle soup on a TV tray table while watching Cartoon Network are over, Lift utilizes a sliding mechanism that echoes the same one as the iconic living room staple from yesteryear. In order to assume different shapes, Lift depends on two sliding wooden pegs on both sides. The sliding wooden pegs on Lift’s front legs lower the desk’s working space to assume the shape of a traditional writing desk, with additional storage space is made available in the process, similar to that of a traditional secretary desk. Then, the other sliding wooden peg, placed along the side of the desktop, adjusts the desktop to form a drawing workstation, which sets the working space of the desk at an angle.

The Bigfoot Table comes handcrafted out of Western Red Cedar wood with a built-in lightweight stainless steel endoskeleton to provide it with its strength. Right in the center of the table lies an opening that reveals a rectangular fireplace built right into the tabletop. The fireplace is supplied with fuel using a propane canister that can be placed in the hollow-space below and comes with a metal outer-casing to protect the wood from getting burnt. Scattered within the fireplace pit are faux-stones that help create a truly remarkable burning surface that’s perfect for roasting smores on, and the fire can be ignited electrically with a simple push of a button and even regulated with the turn of a knob. The fireplace cover is even designed to be reversed, with a game of Mancala integrated into its flip-side – with the ability to use the firestones as game pieces!

Every year when summer starts, fan sales surge and we revel in the cool breeze of air that those rotating blades provide. A lot of people have started ditching their air-conditioning units for the adverse effects that they have on climate change compared to fans. The reduction in energy bills is just an added advantage. But as soon as summer is over, these fans start crowding in a corner of our houses gathering dust, occupying space that could be used otherwise. Designer Wonho Lee saw this problem and came up with an ingenious idea of merging two pieces of furniture into a beautiful synthesis that exemplifies form following function in its truest essence. Brise is a fan that doubles up as a table at the same time. The name comes from a movement in ballet (Brisé) which serves as the inspiration for the styling of this product. Of course, we may want to call it Breezé from now onwards.

Bicycle accessories that’ll make your next cycling experience safe, secure, and fun!

Bicycles are slowly becoming people’s preferred means of transportation. People are ditching the fossil fuel consuming and air pollution causing automobiles for the more eco-friendly option of bikes! Not only are bicycles a boon to the environment, but they also promote good health and ensure we get our daily dose of physical exercise done. They’re a fun way of completing leg day without actually visiting the gym! Amping up your bike with handy and innovative accessories always adds to the cycling experience. From a smart self-sufficient helmet to award-winning reflector lights, we’ve curated a collection of accessory designs that’ll make your biking journey safe, secure, and fun! Bike on!

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“You’re used to changing your shoes and jacket to match the location or weather. Why shouldn’t you be able to do the same with your bike?” reTyre’s zippable tire-tread system gives your city bicycle the versatility to work off the road too. A simple zipping mechanism allows you to add a secondary, tougher tread on your tires, letting you go from riding on smooth asphalt to traversing through tough terrain. No matter the speed, the distance, or the condition, reTyre’s selection of treads make it the only set of wheels your bicycle needs… and in turn making your bicycle the only bicycle you’ll need too. reTyre’s special bicycle tire comes with a zipper lining and a selection of treads or skins that you can clad on your existing tire. The original tire works great on asphalt, and the wide variety of skins allow you to ride your bicycle on mud, gravel, rocks, or even snow. Working on straight roads, curved paths, and even on tough downhill trails, the tire treads give you exactly the grip you need, and the industrial-strength zipper system perseveres through rain, snow, or even rocky terrain… every single time. And when not in use, the treads easily fold up and go right into your backpack!

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It seems rather strange that the bicycle doesn’t come equipped with the basic accessories that motorbikes do. For example a brake (tail) light, indicators, or even rearview mirrors. Even with the relatively slower speeds of bicycles, compared to motorbikes, accidents do occur and can be pretty ugly. Here’s the RearViz, an arm-mounted convex rear-view mirror that allows you to look behind you. It comes flat-packed and can open out to reveal the mirror and even adjust in 360° to point wherever you want it. The Velcro fastener means one size fits all, and the curved mirror gives you a pretty wide-angle view of what’s behind you so you don’t have to turn to look around and risk having a bad encounter. Just remember, objects in the mirror are closer than they appear!

WertelOberfell, a Germany-based designed studio, recently debuted their energy self-sufficient bicycle helmet, ESUB Tracks. The helmet is designed to keep cyclists safe and the creative team at WertelOberfell certainly checked all their corners when considering the different obstacles cyclists face on the road. Built-in smart features buzz through this helmet and they’re powered by organic photovoltaics that gives this helmet all the energy it needs to keep you safe. In order to turn the ordinary helmet into an energy self-sufficient, smart helmet, the designers turned to science. Printed organic batteries and a Nano Arduino, a microcontroller, contained in one unit at the rear of the helmet, run the whole show and all the incorporated electric components, but the helmet’s surface provides the energy. The designers achieved the futuristic look of this helmet by wrapping flat, organic, printed photovoltaics all around in order to use the outer layer of ESUB Tracks as a PV module that absorbs sunlight and turns it into energy.

Now, this isn’t really a piece about the map per se, but rather is about being able to use your map more efficiently. Say hello to the NRG Power Stem, a power-bank that’s designed with an extremely well-defined purpose. The NRG Power Stem was designed to fit right on your bicycle’s handlebars, allowing your phone to remain charged while you have it mounted on your bike. The NRG Power Stem isn’t designed like your conventional power banks, because when your phone is attached to your bicycle, it isn’t really a conventional smartphone either. The smartphone takes the role of your bicycle’s dashboard, so the NRG Power Stem makes sure that this dashboard (and navigation system) runs efficiently and effectively, allowing you to cycle and navigate for hours without needing to charge your phone separately.

Meet the FLECTR 360 WING, from the two-time Eurobike Award-winning and German Design Award-winning company. The FLECTR 360 WING is superiorly engineered adhesive reflector panels that provide 360° coverage. From wherever a car headlight may hit the bike, FLECTR 360 WING will grab the driver’s attention making the biker visible with a stunning glow. Designed to be mounted on the rims of a bicycle’s wheels FLECTR 360 WING requires no electronics, battery, or upkeep. Their unique 3D form allows them to easily wrap around any bike wheel rim, while the extended wing design offers more visibility than before, keeping bikers safe and avoiding collisions. The FLECTR 360 WING works right out of the box, catching and scattering any light that shines on it. The reflectors come in 2 high-reflection formats, and 4 standard reflection variants in different colors.

The UFO Lights are a pair of pretty standard-looking pedals, albeit with a key difference. They come with detachable lamp modules that sit flush at the end of each pedal, and you can switch them on to help other vehicles on the road see you better. The lamp units come with 300-lumen LEDs on the inside that automatically switch on when you begin riding, and turn red when you decelerate, just like a taillight would. The lights move as your pedals rotate, creating a motion pattern that makes them easily visible in the dark – allowing cars, bikes, larger vehicles, and even pedestrians to be alerted of your presence. Beams are even cast on the road below to create a 1-meter halo, giving other vehicles a buffer zone as they overtake you.

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It’s a pain to store your bike outside because it might get damaged or stolen. It’s a pain to store your bike indoors because it carries all the outdoor grime and dirt inside along with it. Quite a dilemma, isn’t it? Velo Sock is like a massive sock for your bike that sits snugly over the tires and most of the body, making sure none of that dirt makes it to your freshly cleaned floor, or those rubber tires don’t leave skid marks on your pristine white wall. Made from a polyester and spandex blend (that are incredibly easy to wash), the Velo Socks can fit bikes that are anywhere between 1.6 to 2 meters long. What’s better is the fact that they come in an absolutely mesmerizing set of patterns that turn your bike into a piece of decorative art to liven up your indoors!

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It’s true that we have garages for our cars and motorbikes, but somehow, all the bicycle got was a bicycle rack. There are objects to tether your bicycle to, but not a dedicated space to store your bicycle in, to protect it not only from theft but also from the elements. This revelation led to Eric G. Pearson creating the Alpen, a compact, secure cocoon of sorts for your bicycle. With a hood that slides open and closed quite majestically, you can easily store one bicycle within the Alpen, and given its small framework and pleasantly sleek design, the Aspen itself can be placed (and even displayed) indoors or even outdoors. Built from virtually indestructible roto-molded polyethylene and equipped with an integrated locking mechanism, the Alpen is a custom home for your bicycle, made to protect your ride from the sun, rain, sleet, rust, and obviously, theft too. The Alpen can be secured to a floor, wall, pillar, or even the back of your truck, letting you carry your bike along with its own home wherever you go.

The TorchONE hopes to alter a scary statistic around cycling. In 2019, 56,000 cyclists lost their lives worldwide, and an estimated 60-70% of them were during low-light conditions. By integrating lights right into the helmet, the TorchONE approaches this problem with a two-fold solution – Prevention and Protection. A finalist at the 2020 EuroBike Awards, the TorchONE boasts of a streamlined, aerodynamic design that weighs a mere 382 grams with large, highly visible, removable lights on the front and back. Designed to provide 360° visibility, these are the largest lights to ever be fitted onto a bike, ensuring that they’re sufficiently visible even in bad weather. Attach them when you need and the lights can run 24/7, detach them during the day and the helmet’s weight drops to an incredibly lightweight 266 grams.

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Chances are, if you’ve ever had a bicycle breakdown, you haven’t had your tools handy to make the repair. Designed for casual and serious cyclists alike, Velojackr includes everything you need to make basic repairs and handle maintenance on the road… all squeezed into one compact case that fits any regular bicycle bottle holder! Better yet, the “tool bottle” itself transforms into a stand to protect handlebars, shifters, and handlebar-mounted tech from dirt and ground abrasion. The unit includes the case, a saddle cover, tire levers, puncture patches, and task gloves, and extra storage for other essential items. Just set it and forget it until you need to make a fix!

Bring your yard to life with these inspirational product designs: Part 3

The COVID-19 pandemic has restricted most of our means of leisure, entertainment, and relaxation! Visiting our favorite restaurant, or jetting off on a little getaway are not always practical choices anymore, we need to think through our plans, take the utmost precautions, and be conscious and careful at all times. So, instead of turning outwards, why don’t we turn inwards? A great option could be using our humble backyards as recreation spaces! How about turning your backyard into an outdoor movie theatre for your family and friends, or hosting a barbecue party with the best grill in the market? We’ve curated a collection of product designs to help you transform these exciting ideas into a reality! These products will turn your yard into the ultimate fun space. We bet you won’t want to step out of your yard, once you introduce these products to it!

The Rocco multifunctional outdoor furniture by Moróro is a barbecue, a sofa, a champagne bar, and more! 2020 has been about creating intimate moments at home, and nothing says intimate like a cozy evening in your backyard! To take things up a notch, we have Rocco which is an all-rounder piece of outdoor furniture. Its clever design transforms it from a fun barbecue into a sofa or champagne bar and even a smores pit – I think it’s safe to say Rocco is an essential this year! You can add a fire bowl to the base or choose from various other accessories like a grill, tabletop, ice bucket, and parasol base. Customize Rocco to fit what you define as a chill evening.

Cineorama by Erika Hock is an outdoor viewing space, so you can sit and watch a couple of your favorite movies with your family and friends, within the comforts of your own backyard! It’s the perfect movie-watching solution during this pandemic when you wish to avoid the crowded movie theatres but also yearn for the conventional theatre experience. You can simply convert your backyard into one!

A tool used for firing clay in a kiln transforms into a minimalist bird feeder! This ceramic bird feeder doesn’t present a new solution for bird feeders but does present an approach for sustainable product manufacturing that solves a problem faced by many designers: the scrap material used during construction, like rings in clay kilns, that is discarded once the product is finished. Ceramika Design and Studio Kononenko wanted to make use of ceramic rings used when firing clay in kilns. The main element of the bird feeder is formed from ceramic – the frame and body of the bird feeder. Covering just about a quarter of the round frame is a plastic plate that functions to store plenty of food for the wild birds. Extending from the middle of the plastic plate is a wooden peg that works as a perch for birds to enjoy their seeds. It’s a beautiful sustainable design for your backyard!

The company behind this work shed has been acing the game when it comes to well-designed office furniture like flexible desks and ergonomic chairs. The Zen Work Pod was a culmination of their furniture design mission clubbed with the need of the hour. The minimalist backyard structure is a stark contrast to the existing toolsheds, it is a modern workspace equipped with all essentials needed for a ‘zen’ workday. “It provides a fresh solution that completely redefines the home office, providing maximum focus during every working hour,” says the team who especially kept creators and freelancers in mind while designing it. The pod features floor-to-ceiling windows and an angular roof all wrapped in a sturdy oak, walnut, and aluminum structure. It is compact but the minimal build and sweeping windows make it feel spacious.

The BURCH BARREL gives you unprecedented control over your barbecue process. You can operate the barbecue lid without having to touch it, or rest the grill on any uneven surface without worrying about it falling over, you can even lift the grill plate off the coal-pan to add more fuel. Moreover, when you’re not grilling food, the BURCH BARREL doubles up as a portable fireplace for those perfect sunset social gatherings. The barrel’s design is immediately striking, with a large tripod system that has the barrel suspended from the very center. This unique format keeps the barrel balanced and vertical at all times, allowing you to mount it on rocky terrain or even on slanted surfaces without any fear of the barrel tipping over. Inspired by a camera’s tripod, the BURCH BARREL comes with telescopic legs that let you orient the unit to be stable, no matter how unstable your ground is, giving it a competitive advantage over regular barbecue grills that traditionally require a flat surface like a pavement, to begin with.

The Bigfoot Table comes handcrafted out of Western Red Cedar wood with a built-in lightweight stainless steel endoskeleton to provide it with its strength. Right in the center of the table lies an opening that reveals a rectangular fireplace built right into the tabletop. The fireplace is supplied with fuel using a propane canister that can be placed in the hollow-space below and comes with a metal outer-casing to protect the wood from getting burnt. Scattered within the fireplace pit are faux-stones that help create a truly remarkable burning surface that’s perfect for roasting smores on, and the fire can be ignited electrically with a simple push of a button and even regulated with the turn of a knob. The fireplace cover is even designed to be reversed, with a game of Mancala integrated into its flip-side – with the ability to use the firestones as game pieces!

The lounger, recliner, and couch have come of age – it’s the era to usher in better ways to sit… and feel like royalty. Thanks to the ‘Hammock Throne’, you can literally feel like that. One of the biggest problems with hammocks is that you need two trees (or poles) to hold them up, and typically they are placed outdoors. Even the home-swing doesn’t match up to the comfort of lazing in the comfortable embrace of a hammock. Folks at Yellow Leaf are solving for this, by giving us the Hammock Throne. Kind of an indoor/outdoor hammock chair; this full-body contraption features a 360° swivel thanks to the anchor base. Simply sit back, relax and swivel all around on a whim. I’d put this free-standing hammock in my living room, where will you?

This device does for your smart home what your Alexa can’t. Tempest turns every part of your home into a smart home, from your front-gate to your backyard. Designed as an all-in-one weather-monitoring system that sits on your lawn, Tempest uses a variety of sensors and AI to predict the weather for your house. It enables you to plan your day better, know what to watch out for when you’re stepping out or even when you’re indoors, and most importantly, it helps calibrate your home’s energy consumption based on the forecast it generates. It’ll tell you when there’s a storm brewing minutes before the storm hits or if you should put on sunscreen when the sunlight’s harsh, it can close your garage door when it gets too windy, and it’ll automatically switch your sprinklers off if there’s a rain shower in the forecast. The Tempest runs entirely on solar power and communicates with your home using long-range Wi-Fi. It even sends back data to WeatherFlow, which collectively uses all the pooled information to accurately predict weather patterns across the world.

A portable smart fireplace is what we need for this unprecedented holiday season! My Warmth by Simon Pavy is a conceptual fireplace that was created to make having a fireplace accessible despite how your interior is laid out. The smart portable appliance also gives you the same cozy vibes while reducing work that comes with a traditional fireplace. My Warmth is the size of a humidifier or an air purifier so it doesn’t take a lot of space in your living room. There is a dial to control the temperature so you can pick the right degree for toasty toes or crank it up for smores! The all brushed aluminum gives it a sleek aesthetic that reminds me of glass domes that cover baked goods – as one should have by the fireplace. My Warmth lets you enjoy the quintessential holiday vibes with your own portable fireplace. I can already hear Nat King Cole start on those chestnuts!

Eve Aqua is a smart water controller that will continue to regularly and quantitatively irrigate your plants, lawn, flowerbed, or backyard. It is compatible with your smart devices as well as Siri so you can set up the home kit and control the system with your phone, tablet, etc. It has 7 watering periods in a day and you can set it up as per your needs and even create an autonomous schedule. These irrigation plans are stored in Eve Aqua so even if your device is disconnected, it will still do the job. It also has a two-channel water distributor so you can use it for irrigation without tying up your faucet. The auto shut-off feature makes sure you never have to watch the clock or come home to a flooded garden. It conserves a lot more water through its smart management system when compared to us doing it manually.

For more such exciting outdoor designs, check out Part 1 and Part 2 of this post!