Rodolfo Cañas extends "oversized skylight" from Mogro House in Chile

Skylight House by Rodolfo Cañas

A stainless steel volume topped by a skylight protrudes from this house in Santiago, which Chilean architect Rodolfo Cañas has completed for his family.

Skylight House by Rodolfo Cañas

The residence is nicknamed Skylight House after the extension that peeks out above the house. Clad in stainless steel panels, the slender volume lets light in through a large opening at the top, and contains a black steel staircase inside that leads up to the roof.

This is the only part of the home visible from the surrounding streets.

Skylight House by Rodolfo Cañas

“Only one oversized skylight gives a glimpse of what could be happening inside,” said a project description from Rodolfo Cañas.

The ground floor of the home, which is enclosed on its two long sides with floor-to-ceiling glass, is hidden behind a tall black wall that runs the entire length of the property. Another name for the house, Casa Mogro, is a contraction of the Santiago neighbourhood in which it is located, called Montenegro.

Skylight House by Rodolfo Cañas

Completed in 2018, the minimal home encompasses two bedrooms laid out on the ground level and in the basement. Cañas is also interested in the possibility of building another storey above the ground floor, but wanted to wait, to save on costs.

“This house is two thirds of a final project that is not necessarily going to be completed,” according to Cañas.

Skylight House by Rodolfo Cañas

Although no expansion is currently planned, the thick concrete slab that forms the roof of the home was designed to be able to support the weight of another storey above it. In its current form, this surface acts as an expansive rooftop terrace.

Skylight House by Rodolfo Cañas

“It has an elevated terrace and eventually could be the place of the missing third of the house,” Cañas explained in a project description.

A master suite occupies the lower level, and gets plenty of light through a sunken courtyard, while protecting the occupants from prying eyes. The owner’s bedroom and bathroom can both open onto this sheltered outdoor space via floor-to-ceiling sliding doors.

Skylight House by Rodolfo Cañas

Upstairs, the open kitchen and dining area are separated from the living room by a floating metal staircase that leads up to the roof. The ground floor is designed to fully open to the home’s front and rear gardens, a layout that the architect describes as “an interior garden with a transparent house sheltered inside of it”.

Another bedroom and bathroom anchor the end of the home, across from the kitchen.

Skylight House by Rodolfo Cañas

Throughout the home, monochrome furniture complements the palette of exposed concrete and steel.

Other recent projects completed in Chile include a home with more exterior space than interior area by Alvano y Riquelme Architects, and a barn that brings in light through a sculptural skylight in the roof.

Photography is by Aryeh Kornfeld.

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This smart-camera lets you peek in and check your fridge while you’re shopping for groceries

As a human who has, on multiple occasions, ended up buying milk from the supermarket only to find that there’s already milk in the fridge (Jerry Seinfeld even has an entire bit about this), I can attest that the Fridge Eye is just a simply brilliant product. Just imagine being able to peek into your fridge while you’re at the supermarket, so you know exactly what you need to stock up on… just the thought of it makes me dance a little. The Fridge Eye is, as its name suggests, a camera that helps you glance into your refrigerator from a remote location, to know if you’re running low on fruits, veggies, frozen pizza, or pudding cups because your sibling or annoying roommate keeps snacking on them. How it works is simple. The product retrofits onto any refrigerator to turn it into a smart one. Every time you close the fridge door, the Fridge Eye takes a snapshot of your fridge and sends it to your phone using your home Wi-Fi. While you’re at the grocery store, you can easily see the latest image of your fridge to keep a tab on what stuff you need to re-stock on. Neat, isn’t it?!

Designed by Munich-based company brezzl., the Fridge Eye is designed to work with any fridge, attaching to a wall on the fridge, or a cabinet on the fridge-door. The wireless device runs on batteries, and boasts of a battery life that spans years. The trick is in the way the Fridge Eye is programmed. It isn’t a camera that streams video footage on command, it just sends you a picture of your fridge’s interiors every time the door shuts. The Fridge Eye uses a temperature-sensor to identify when someone opens the fridge door (i.e., when the temperature suddenly drops), and it conveniently clicks a picture once said person has shut the fridge door. This clever process means the Fridge Eye really doesn’t run out of batteries for years… and on the off chance you open your fridge door a lot, the Fridge Eye can easily by charged via a Type-C charger. Setting it up is simple too. Just place the camera at a strategic location, giving it a clear view of the fridge’s interiors, and connect it to your home Wi-Fi. The Fridge-Eye is equipped with a wide-angle lens that can capture most of your fridge’s interiors… and get this, brezzl. is even working on image-recognition, so the camera can easily craft shopping lists for you, sending them to your Android and iOS smartphones so you can even re-stock your fridge from your bedroom or your living room.

The genius of the Fridge Eye is that it appeals to consumers as a product that helps them save time and money (by preventing duplicate purchases), but in reality, it also helps drastically reduce food wastage, because you now know exactly what and what not to purchase. Designed to fit onto any refrigerator, and last practically years without needing a recharge, the Fridge Eye is just a simply brilliant product that’s supported by an idea that’s sheer genius! Now if only the Fridge Eye reminded people to carry shopping bags as they step out to the supermarket!

Designers: Vladislav Svetashkov & Kirill Andushchenko

Click Here to Buy Now: $79 $130 (39% off). Hurry, only 13/62 left!

Fridge Eye – Turn Your Fridge Into a Smart Fridge

Save time and hundreds on your grocery bill by streamlining your trip to the grocery store by knowing exactly what you have and what you need.

Easy to Install & Connects to your Mobile in Seconds

1. Install the app and configure.

2. Attach the camera to your pantry or cabinet. Anywhere with a door that you store food is the perfect fit.

Know exactly what’s in your fridge.

3. Enjoy your new smart fridge.

Fridge Eye Captures the Perfect Shot

Click Here to Buy Now: $79 $130 (39% off). Hurry, only 13/62 left!

Rem D Koolhaas and supermodel Shaun Ross launch unisex high-heel boot

Shaun Ross X United Nude Boots

Dutch footwear brand United Nude, headed by architect Rem D Koolhaas, and model Shaun Ross have designed a heeled boot “with no particular individual in mind.”

Shaun Ross X United Nude Boots

United Nude teamed up with Ross, who is known for his activism for gender-fluid fashion, and stylist Roman Sipe to create the shoe to break the stereotype that heels are intended for women.

“The Shaun Ross x United Nude high heeled boot for men and women brings together an innovative shoe company and an alternative personality, joining the two forces to meld a new generation of style in celebration of diversity,” the companies said in a product description.

Shaun Ross X United Nude Boots

“This unisex project involves a shoe totally developed from the collective minds of Ross and Sipe, but with no particular individual in mind,” the designers added.

Crafted with either black or white napa leather the western influenced boot comes in two heights, one that rests at the ankle and another with a higher shaft that reaches the upper calf. A square toe fronts the design, while a 3.25 inch (8.25 centimetre) geometric block heel lifts the shoe to give it its height.

A loop is attached on the shoe’s rear and a zipper is concealed in its side. Etched into the inner corner of each heel is a chrome detailing intended to give the “illusion of a sheared edge.”

Shaun Ross X United Nude Boots

The Shaun Ross x United Nude boot, which was unveiled this month during New York Fashion Week, was made in a limited run of 400, unique production numbers are engraved into the metal. The boots are available in men’s and women’s sizes and retail for $485 (£298) to $565 (£347).

Shaun Ross X United Nude Boots

United Nude was established in 2003 by Rem D Koolhaas,  a nephew of Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas, and shoemaker Galahad Clark.

The brands other projects include sandals with a fragmented platform heel and a series of 3-D printed shoes created by architects and designers such as Zaha Hadid, Ben van Berkel and Michael Young.

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Snaking canopy covers open-air hotpot restaurant in Chinese forest

Garden Hotpot Restaurant by MUDA Architects

A canopy supported by slim white columns covers a hotpot restaurant by MUDA Architects in Chengdu, China which hugs the edge of a lotus pond in a eucalyptus forest.

The Garden Hotpot Restaurant is located at the edge of the Sansheng Township in a suburb of Chengdu, and specialises in the area’s traditional cuisine where a simmering pot is served at the table.

Garden Hotpot Restaurant by MUDA Architects

MUDA Architects designed the restaurant to have a minimal impact on the local landscape and ecology.

“The natural landscape of the site is beautiful but complex,” said the practice. “Eucalyptus trees must be preserved, and the terrain is torturous with a two metre drop.”

Garden Hotpot Restaurant by MUDA Architects

After mapping the terrain closely, MUDA Architects responded with a simple, lightweight structure with a curved form inspired by steam rising from a hotpot.

Garden Hotpot Restaurant has no exterior or internal walls, only thin steel pillars, with decking below and a roof above.

Garden Hotpot Restaurant by MUDA Architects
Photo is by the MUDA Architects

The structure hugs the banks of the pond closely, growing and shrinking in width in response to the landscape and nearby trees  to “blur the boundary” between the building and nature.

As well as providing seating areas for diners, a low wooden balustrade runs along the restaurant’s perimeter to form a viewing walkway that frames panoramas of the surrounding landscape.

Garden Hotpot Restaurant by MUDA Architects
Photo is by the MUDA Architects

“Thin columns are evenly distributed on both sides, and the free curve of the roof forms several transparent viewing frames, so that different views can be appreciated during the process of walking,” said the studio.

Garden Hotpot Restaurant ‘s platform was constructed using anti-corrosive wood, and the thin steel columns support a galvanised steel roof raised three metres above the ground.

Garden Hotpot Restaurant by MUDA Architects

The structure was designed to be welded together quickly and easily in order to allow local workers to take part in the process.

The building forms the first phase in a wider renovation commission for the popular tourist area of Chengdu that MUDA Architects won in 2018.

Garden Hotpot Restaurant by MUDA Architects

MUDA Architects was originally founded in Boston, US, in 2015, before setting up offices in both Beijing and Chengdu.

Many new projects in Chengdu respond to the area’s popularity as a tourist destination. Recent schemes include The Budapest Café by Australian practice Biasol, designed in pastel hues as a nod to Wes Anderson’s film The Grand Budapest Hotel.

Photography is by Arch-Exist unless stated otherwise.

Project credits:

Client: Xinhua Nufang Restaurant
Architect: MUDA Architects
Chief architect: Yun Lu
Design team: Yun Lu, Jiandan Xu, Qiming Sun, Xue Chen, Yixiu He, Xiaoqiao Liu, Dian Rong, Shangyun Zhou
Construction supervision unit: Chufeng Architectural Decoration Design Co., Ltd
Construction supervision team: Xianyong Wu, Fei Jiang, Wenjie Tang, Songlin Li
Construction team: Hao Chen, Chuangui Zhou, etc.

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MANA and Scott Oster insert mirrored skate ramp into Parisian store

Le Cube installation by MANA and Scott Oster

Chicago architecture practice MANA and skateboarder Scott Oster have added a skate ramp encased within a reflective silver cube in the atrium of Le Bon Marché department store in Paris.

The installation – called Le Cube – was unveiled as the centrepiece of the Los Angeles Rive Gauche exhibition in Paris, where a curated selection of LA fashion, beauty, and lifestyle products were displayed inside the French capital’s Le Bon Marché department store.

Created by Oster and John Manaves of architecture practice MANA, the installation has been shortlisted in the retail interior category of Dezeen Awards.

Le Cube installation by MANA and Scott Oster

The mirrored cube was placed in the store’s central atrium and is punctuated by a full-pipe – a 360-degree concave structure that skateboarders use to perform gravity-defying stunts.

Intended to function as both a stage and a sculpture, the elevated full-pipe hosted live skate performances several times a week.

Le Cube installation by MANA and Scott Oster

Its reflective surface also meant that, when the cube was not in use,  shoppers walking along the balconies that wrap Le Bon Marché’s atrium could catch their own reflection and take photos.

“When it was not being activated, Le Cube sat quietly, luminously reflecting the architecture of its surroundings—warm lights, decorative iron handrails, and the famous crossing escalators of Le Bon Marché,” said MANA.

Le Cube installation by MANA and Scott Oster

“Le Cube assists in the rethinking of how the future of retail shall exist not only as a shopping experience, but more importantly, as an exhibition, performance, and spectacle,” the practice continued.

“The historical setting of Le Bon Marché, the original retail department store, sets this precedent.”

Le Cube installation by MANA and Scott Oster

Oster was originally approached by the exhibition’s curators to design a pop-up space in the store that would house a collection inspired by surf and skate culture on California’s Venice Beach in the 1980s.

Having grown up in that era and skated professionally, Oster wanted to create something unique and sculptural – or, as he describes, “a piece of art that happened to be skateable”.

Inspired by the massive concrete full-pipes he saw as a kid in skateboard magazines, Oster worked with Manaves to design a unique full-pipe set within a cube and wrapped with mirrors.

Le Cube installation by MANA and Scott Oster

The cube measured six metres square and comprised of four timber-framed bays, two of which cantilevered over the structure’s smaller steel-framed base so that it seems to float above the shop floor.

It was then clad in sheets of lightweight aluminium manufactured by local company Like Mirror. Each one was designed to be flexible so that the vibrations created by skateboarding didn’t damage the structural framework.

Narrow gaps had also been left between the panels to form a visible grid across the cube’s surface, highlighting the structure’s geometry.

“The design not only had to account for the normal static loads of the installation, but also for the dynamic loads of the skateboarder inside,” explained the architects.

Le Cube installation by MANA and Scott Oster

The internal full-pipe was five metres in diameter and featured a plywood ramp. Lights, speakers, and an access door were installed flush to the ramp’s surface to enable unobstructed skating.

This isn’t the only instance that retail spaces have incorporated quirky features for skateboarders – last year, New York-based studio Neil Logan Architect inserted a skate bowl into streetwear brand Supreme’s Williamsburg store.

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Ditch concrete and steel with our Pinterest boards unearthing alternative building materials

Community Centre in Mannheim by University of Kaiserslautern, Germany

Reflecting on last week’s climate summit, we’re showcasing alternatives to concrete in this week’s new Pinterest boards. Branch out with our spruced-up boards featuring cross-laminated timber high rises, bamboo structures and enclosures with rammed-earth walls. Follow Dezeen on Pinterest ›

Main image shows the dazzling lighting effects from cross-laminated timber walls and latticework in a refugee camp designed and built by architecture students.

Open the Pinterest app on your phone, tap the camera icon and scan the below Pincode to explore Dezeen’s feed.

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Fairphone 3 promises to be "real sustainable alternative" to regular smartphones

Fairphone 3 modular ethical smartphone by Fairphone

Dutch social enterprise Fairphone has released a new version of its “ethical” smartphone that is designed to be easily taken apart for repairs.

The Fairphone 3 eschews glue in favour of screws and a unibody handset in favour of a modular design, in a bid to cut down on e-waste and improve the life cycle of electronics.

It sets itself apart from Apple’s iPhone and other leading smartphones on the market, which have been criticised for the increasing impenetrability that makes them difficult to recycle.

Fairphone 3 modular ethical smartphone by Fairphone

This is the third iteration of the Fairphone, and the company promises a refined design that is more reliable and durable as well as slimmer than previous models.

Its goal is that customers should keep the phone for five years or more, removing any faulty module for replacement or repair.

By encouraging customers to keep their devices for longer, the company reduces the carbon dioxide emissions from manufacturing and shipping.

Fairphone 3 modular ethical smartphone by Fairphone

Fairphone thinks in terms of social as well as environmental sustainability. The company operates several initiatives it dubs “fair specs”, which aim to make its supply chain fairer.

To improve the conditions of workers, it has collaborated with manufacturer Arima, in whose factory the products are assembled, to increase pay, representation, health and safety.

When it comes to materials, Fairphone uses responsibly sourced and conflict-free tin and tungsten, recycled copper and plastics, and Fairtrade gold.

The company is also exploring possibilities for the “better sourcing” of cobalt, which is currently mined in hazardous conditions, sometimes by children.

Fairphone 3 modular ethical smartphone by Fairphone

Although in one sense the company is a competitor to Apple, Samsung and other tech giants, Fairphone’s CEO Eva Gouwens says its goal is to change practices across the electronics industry.

“We developed the Fairphone 3 to be a real sustainable alternative on the market, which is a big step towards lasting change,” she Gouwens.

“By establishing a market for ethical products, we want to motivate the entire industry to act more responsibly since we cannot achieve this change alone,” she added.

Fairphone 3 modular ethical smartphone by Fairphone

The Fairphone 3’s specs are similar to mid-level smartphones on the market today, incorporating a 5.7-inch display with Gorilla Glass, a 12-megapixel rear camera and an eight-megapixel front camera.

The phone also features a Qualcomm Snapdragon 632 processor and 3000 milliamp hour (mAh) battery.

The battery is removable, as are the other six of the phone’s modules. A “teardown” conducted by website iFixit shows the reviewer removing the back with their fingers and the modules with a Phillips-head screwdriver.

Fairphone 3 modular ethical smartphone by Fairphone

Inside, the connectors and modules are labelled to assist with re-assembly, and small graphics such as a map of the Democratic Republic of Congo serve to remind tinkerers of the product’s supply chain.

Most of the components inside the modules are replaceable too, although a few are glued on.

Fairphone 3 modular ethical smartphone by Fairphone

The Fairphone is the key modular smartphone on the market since Google shelved Project Ara in 2016.

The company released the first Fairphone in 2013 and followed up with mark two in 2016. Although neither were huge sellers, the Fairphone 3 arguably arrives at a time of increased consumer interest in ethical products.

Last year design duo Formafantasma presented Ore Streams, a two-year research project into e-waste, using the opportunity to ask designers to consider recyclability as integral to good design

Another company committed to disassemblable electronics is Kano, which aims to educate kids on how to take apart their tech.

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The SVPER11 watch captures the Apollo 11 landing site’s terrain right on its dial

The Apollo 11 mission, if anything, acted as a massive event in human unity, as people across the globe gathered in front of their television sets to talk about mankind’s greatest space achievement. 50 years later, the moon landing is still our biggest space exploit till date, and is even today considered as an achievement for mankind, rather than for just one country. In that very spirit, Rafal Czaniecki designed the SVPER11 watch, a testament to man’s most exciting journey into space, complete with tiny details that pay tribute to the moon and the landing site.

The SVPER11’s most distinct detail is its 3D watch face, complete with contour lines and 3D surfaces that take inspiration from the Apollo 11’s landing site in the Sea of Tranquility. Centered exactly at the landing site, SVPER11’s seconds hand comes in a red X shape, mimicking the feeling of a sweeping radar as it scans the lunar surface. A Japanese Seiko movement allows the seconds hand to have a sweeping action, making it truly look the part. Speaking of looking the part, the watch’s crown is inspired too. The red hexagonal-gear crown takes direct inspiration from the Apollo 11 Spacesuit’s red oxygen valve, giving the watch yet another beautiful easter-egg in its design details. As far as easter-eggs go, a final detail lies hidden in the watch’s metal clasp. On the underside of the clasp are etched the exact lunar coordinates for the Apollo 11 moon landing, making the SVPER11 an absolutely perfect watch for any space-fanatic! The watch comes with a mineral glass upper, complete with a scratch-proof sapphire coating. The watch face underneath is simple and sophisticated. Other than the SVPER branding, the watch switches out the numbers for stick-markings, making it truly universally appealing.

SVPER11 isn’t just another moon-inspired watch. It’s a watch that is truly Rafal Czaniecki’s magnum opus as an industrial designer. The watches come in a spectacular set of colors, ranging from Lunar Red to a black variant, and even a white one, in keeping with the moon’s black and white surface. There’s also a golden Kapton variant, taking inspiration from the astronauts’ golden-foil space blankets. The watch’s body is made from a single piece of stainless steel, and it comes with a special ceramic plaque at the bottom, paying tribute to everyone at NASA who worked on the lunar mission. Lastly, the watch packs an accented nylon strap with a silent velcro, making it look truly out of this world!

Designer: Rafal Czaniecki

Click Here to Buy Now: $230 $350 (34% off). Hurry, for a limited time only!

About SVPER11 Watch

The NASA Apollo 11 Moon Landing Mission Inspired watch with 3D topographic face.

In 4 Moon-landing Inspired Color Combinations

Inspired by the endless space void with NASA red accents beaming through the darkness.

Inspired by the unknown of the dark side of the moon. Minimalist and sophisticated.

Inspired by the pure white Apollo 11 space suit, featuring white nylon strap and NASA red and blue accents.

Inspired by the material used in space blankets on the moon lander (golden foil protectors).

The Dial

They explored many design elements and motives, but the one that was most captivating was the Apollo 11 landing site, The Sea of Tranquility.

Based on the NASA maps of the moon, they created 3D topographic map, that became the face of the watch.

300 tons. That’s the pressure applied multiple times to the brass disc that become the dial. Each layer is only 0.1mm thin.

The Crown

The crown of the watch is inspired by bt the Apollo 11 spacesuit. The shape is reminiscent of the oxygen valves from the front of the spacesuit.

The Glass Dome

They covered the mineral glass with a layer of Sapphire and additional anti-reflective coating. The shape of the dome flows smoohtly with the curvature of the case.

The Movement

They decided to use SEIKO Japanese movement – VH31. It’s unique as it allows the second hand to beat 4 times per second, giving an impression of smooth radar-like movement. Constantly marking the location of the Moon landing.

The Case

Made out of stainless steel 316L. THe steel mono-block design is minimalistic.

The Caseback

Made out of technical ceramic that adds almost glowing quality to the surface.

The Strap

Custom clasp and added military-grade nylon strap with silent velcro. On the reverse side of the strap, you’ll find exact coordinates of the landing site, laser-etched into the metal surface of the buckle.

Click Here to Buy Now: $230 $350 (34% off). Hurry, for a limited time only!

Seven Dutch designers exhibit experimental works in New York

Colony X Ventura Dutch Design

A chandelier crafted from chicken coop mesh and a leather stool made from fish skin are among the pieces showcased in this exhibition of Dutch designers organised by Ventura Projects and Colony.

Colony X Ventura Dutch Design
Rick Tegelaar moulded chicken wire into a light fixture, accented with gold trim, to create Meshmatics Chandelier

Dutch Design is a joint exhibition curated by Margriet Vollenberg, founder of Ventura Projects, and Jean Lin, who runs New York design collective Colony.

The showcase presents the work of seven designers from The Netherlands at Colony’s New York showroom, with each exploring unconventional fabrication methods.

Colony X Ventura Dutch Design
Made by Rain, a ceramic collection by Aliki van der Kruijs ,features a pattern created by actual raindrops, in various shades of blue

It forms the latest showcase produced by Ventura projects, which is behind the annual Ventura Lambrate and Ventura Centrale during Milan Design Week. The company has brought a similar showcase to New York’s annual design week in recent years – including a presentation of objects by 14 Dutch designers.

“As a whole, the presented collection is the result of experimental research where production methods directly influence form and function of the created objects without obscuring their beauty,” the curators said.

Colony X Ventura Dutch Design
Studio Jeroen pieced together leftover veneer to manufacture a small cabinet and moulded plaster to create vases

Among the designs are a set of woven sculptural panels that design Rick Tegelaar creating using a 3D print-like technique that irons Colback fibres onto a non-woven Colback material. Another piece by Tegelaar, the Meshmatics Chandelier, moulds chicken wire to create a light fixture that reflects light in various directions.

Alissa + Nienke also designed panels, partitions, window coverings and sculptures that play with the movement of light. The studio researched the materiality of stainless steel for Mirabilia Metal, a surface that changes its appearance depending on one’s perspective.

“The fold-out pattern catches light from all directions, creating a lively surface when you walk around it or move it,” Alissa + Nienke said.

Dutch Design also exhibits hand-woven cushions and wall coverings by textile designer Aleksandra Gaca in variety of colours that feature a ribbed texture.

Colony X Ventura Dutch Design
Hanging pendants and colourful glassware made by Studio Kalff also feature in the exhibit

“Weaving is an ancient technology,” Gaca said. “I like to honour the emotional, deeply human quality of woven textiles while constantly pushing the boundaries of the industry.”

Blankets woven with mohair, linen and cotton that mimic the touch of skin by Nienke Hoogvliet also experiment with textile fabrication. She also used fish skins to create a tanned leather to upholster a small stool.

Colony X Ventura Dutch Design
Nienke Hoogvliet wove mohair, linen and cotton to create these blankets that mimic the texture of skin and crafted fish skin into leather to form a small stool

Aliki van der Kruijs, a textile designer by trade, showcases experimental ceramic work in the collection. The idea for Made by Rain porcelain came from her fabric of the same name, which uses the print of actual raindrops to create a pattern.

Colony X Ventura Dutch Design
Woven sculptural panels by Tegelaar use a 3-D print technique that irons Colback fibres onto a non-woven Colback material

Other items on exhibit include Studio Kalff’s colourful glassware and a sturdy shelving unit that Studio Jeroen Wand constructed using leftover veneer.

Dutch Design is on display at the Colony 324 Canal St, 2nd Fl in New York from 12 September to 20 December.

Colony X Ventura Dutch Design
Alissa + Nienke designed panels, partitions, window coverings and sculptures that play with the movement of light

Colony is a design collective that was founded by trend forecaster Jean Lin in 2014. Previous exhibits have included a presentation of designers works hacked by artiststapestries and home products, and a politically charged furniture and lighting installation.

Photography is by Jason Wyche.

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This electric guitar with a built-in amp/speaker & app gets anyone playing songs instantly

It only seems fair that kids learn how to play the guitar on a guitar that’s designed for them, right? I mean, you don’t teach a 6 year old how to ride a bike on an adult-sized bicycle. Back in 2010, Loog was started by Rafael Atijas as a Master’s Thesis at NYU. It slowly, over less than a decade, grew into a movement that saw support from thousands of children, parents, teachers, and even musical legends from bands like The Rolling Stones, Metallica, and Johnny Marr. The Loog is essentially the child-bicycle equivalent of a guitar. Scaled down to fit a child’s frame and hands, the Loog is a miniature electric guitar (available in 3 and 6 string formats) for children to learn to play on. It comes with an in-built amplifier, so you don’t need to invest in an external amp (or worry about hassled neighbors), and even packs flash-cards that teach children guitar essentials, and an augmented-reality-enabled app that can help kids learn to master the instrument at a young age… because the best time to learn an instrument is when you’re young, right?

The Loog comes in two formats. The 3-stringed is easier to teach younger kids, because getting kids to play bar-chords early is difficult (I still can’t master them and I’ve been playing the guitar for over a decade). Still completely playable, the 3-stringed guitar helps kids master the easier chords (which usually comprise of just 3 notes), and comes in a Mini, the smallest size available, and a Pro, which is perfect for kids above the age of 6. The Pro VI is a 6-stringed larger version for kids entering their teenage years, and is essentially a proper 6-stringed electric guitar scaled down to be kid-friendly. Each guitar comes fashioned with all the embellishments you’d expect in an electric guitar. Loop-pins for a guitar-strap, volume and tone-knobs, a quarter-inch jack output for an amplifier, and even an in-built amp that allows the kid to play the guitar anywhere without needing to lug an external amp around. Oh, it even backs built-in distortion, because what fun is an electric guitar without that recognizable rock-flavor?

Designed as more than just an instrument, each Loog comes with an entire educational component that guides kids through the music process. Flash-cards help kids pick up chords to play, while the app uses augmented reality to guide learners through more complex routines. The app even helps kids figure out how to tune their guitar, and an in-built songbook helps them pick up popular guitar-friendly tracks (because personally, kids need to listen to more Queen and less Marshmello, amirite?)

But more than anything, the Loog isn’t just a tiny guitar or an app, no sir. It’s an ecosystem designed to get children interested in playing a music instrument… which, as a child who was pushed to learn singing at the age of four, and the guitar at the age of twelve, I can definitely attest is an incredible thing. More children should learn how to play musical instruments. Music can have a calming effect on children from an early age, help them acquire better motor skills and hand-eye-coordination, and form closer bonds with other kids and people through the power of the instrument. Let’s just also admit that the Loog makes any kid look like a complete rockstar!

On a side note, the 6-string model is totally suitable for adults!

Designers: Rafael Atijas & Joaquín Uribe

Click Here to Buy Now: $99 $150 (34% off). Hurry, only 6 days left! Raised over $350,000.

Loog Guitars: Built-in Amplifier & Speaker + App with Augmented Reality.

Electric guitars designed to make it fun and easy to play music. Loog guitars come with flashcards that teach you how to form chords, and an app that gets you playing songs on day one. They have songs by The Beatles, The Stones, Taylor Swift, Bruno Mars and more, and you can play karaoke-style and learn through Augmented Reality.

Who Is It For?

Anyone who ever wanted to play guitar! Loog guitars are especially helpful for children, who can easily -and comfortably- form chords on Loog’s slim 3-string neck.

Learn on a Loog. Play Any Guitar

Their 3-string guitars use the first three strings -and tuning- of a regular guitar. Therefore, finger placement and everything you learn can be applied on a 6-string guitar too. It’s a seamless transition, approved by educators, that allows kids to learn on a Loog and then play any guitar.

And for grown-ups and those who are ready for a 6-string neck, they now offer the Loog Pro VI: a 6-string guitar that also pairs to the Loog app, allowing you to learn guitar through Augmented Reality!

The Loog Guitars – Mini, Pro & Pro VI

The Loog guitars come in three sizes. And have a built-in amplifier and speaker. And they did it in a quite subtle way; there’s virtually no extra weight, no awkward knobs or controls.

Here’s a demo of the Loog Pro VI Electric. Sound is from the built-in amp and speaker. You can still plug your Loog to an external amp if you want to. (Side benefit: Your Loog is now a pretty cool travel guitar!)

Loog Mini Electric. Recommended ages 3+.

Loog Pro Electric. Recommended ages 8+.

Loog Pro VI Electric. Recommended ages 12+.

The Loog App

You get an instrument bundled with everything you need to learn to play songs. There are flashcards that teach you how to form chords, and an app that gets you playing songs on day one.

The Loog Guitar app has an AUGMENTED REALITY feature that allows you to learn guitar using the selfie camera.

Here’s an unedited video showing the current development state of the app. The iOS version (iPad and iPhone) is almost ready and we’ll have an Android version too.


The Loog app also has a tuner, video lessons, games, and a digital songbook so you can learn to play guitar by playing real songs.

Click Here to Buy Now: $99 $150 (34% off). Hurry, only 6 days left! Raised over $350,000.