Katy Marks designs one-cup Uno bra for women to feel "confidently asymmetric"

Uno bra by Katy Marks

Architect Katy Marks of Citizens Design Bureau has created Uno, a one-cup bra for women who have undergone mastectomies, to empower and celebrate post-surgery bodies.

Breast cancer survivor Marks designed the Uno collection after her own mastectomy when she found herself struggling to find bras that offered support to one breast without requiring prosthetics.

Uno one-cup bra by Katy Marks
The Uno collection features a bra with one cup

“When you have a mastectomy, you come home and suddenly your whole underwear drawer is obsolete – which is pretty depressing,” said the architect, who is the founder of London-based office Citizens Design Bureau.

“I cut a lot of bras in half and started adding flat straps on the side, but then, as an architect, I felt compelled to start sketching,” she told Dezeen.

Blue bikini tops featuring one cup each
Architect Katy Marks also created one-cup swimwear for the collection

Made to order in small batches to eliminate unnecessary waste, the Uno collection features asymmetrical bras and swimwear in a variety of colours that were designed not to compromise comfort or appearance.

Each piece features a single contoured cup and strap for either left or right breasts, supported by a wide band of fabric that is flat on one side and wraps around the chest.

The bras’ thinner straps are adjustable while the bikini top can be tied into a decorative bow at the back.

The bikini tops fasten with a bow at the back

When designing the collection, Marks explained that one of the main challenges was preventing the asymmetry from causing the bra to twist or sag on the body while avoiding tight elastic on the band that could irritate scar tissue and tender skin following radiotherapy.

Marks and her team trialled prototypes on a range of women “of different shapes and sizes” – many of whom are in active treatment – to find the best solution.

“The fact that there are no asymmetric mannequins was also an obstacle,” acknowledged the architect.

One-cup black bra for women who have had mastectomies
Marks created the collection for women who have had breast removal surgery

The underwear is made from a combination of stretch satin and Lenzing modal – a material created from sawdust as a by-product of the European timber industry.

For the swimwear, the team chose Econyl, which is a fabric made of reconstituted ocean plastics.

“I was determined that Uno should not become part of a fast fashion, disposable, high-waste culture that is really destructive,” said Marks.

“Lenzing modal is also sumptuously soft on the skin,” she added.

Uno swimwear made from recycled ocean plastics
The team used a material made from recycled ocean plastics for the swimwear

Accessibility and affordability were also important priorities for Marks, who plans to publish open-source, simplified versions of some of the garment patterns.

“There is a growing movement of women wanting [asymmetrical bras] and doing it themselves in frustration at not being able to find anything,” said the architect.

Katy Marks wearing her self-designed Uno bra
Marks created the collection to empower women who have had mastectomies

While Marks highlighted that women with cancer have countless different experiences and might understandably choose to undergo post-surgery breast reconstruction, 69 per cent of women who have mastectomies decide to remain flat after breast removal and deserve appropriate underwear, according to the architect.

“After my surgery, I felt real anxiety and hated that I felt compelled to wear these prosthetics, which felt to me like a kind of cartoonish costume I had to put on in order to feel like a real woman,” she said.

“I have two young sons, and I felt really strongly that I didn’t want them to see me feeling inhibited by my body and my scars. I wanted to show my kids that it’s okay to look a bit different and that it doesn’t change who I am.”

Marks designed the Uno logo with a hyphen in front of the letter U, which is crowned with an illustrative dot to symbolise a breast.

“I saw the graphic opportunities of using the U and a hyphen in front of the word, to suggest a breast and a scar as a motif,” she explained.

“So, it was a little bit of graphic fun, with a logo that I’ve painted many times, again playfully reflecting all the different shapes and sizes of breasts.”

Uno bra by Katy Marks
The collection will be available to pre-order from 1 December

“Uno was about being confidently asymmetric, designing something that looks like a really beautiful thing to wear in its own right – which just happens to be asymmetric and have only one cup,” reflected Marks.

“It is up to women themselves to decide what makes them feel feminine or not – nobody else. If you have confidence in who you are, you can find a way for it to shine through.”

“Of course, it’s easy to say and it took me a while to get there – but I stared at myself in the mirror and really felt that I had to learn to like myself,” continued the architect.

“My experience is that many people don’t even notice, but when they do, they accept it, and why shouldn’t they? Why should we feel ashamed or try to hide our bodies after we have had cancer, as though the only way to be feminine is to be a ‘normal woman’?

“We need to shift into the 21st century and recognise that the diversity of our bodies is the norm. The more we see it, the more we can be it.”

Designer Lisa Marks previously made Algorithmic Lace, a bra for people who have had mastectomies, which features no underwire and can create the illusion of symmetry and curves. Sportswear brand Adidas recently collaborated with designer Stella McCartney to create a sports bra that allows its wearers to breastfeed more easily.

The photography is by Tara Darby.

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5 Top LEGO Creations That LEGO Enthusiasts Need To Get Their Hands On & Build

I absolutely loved building detailed and intricate LEGO structures as a child. I could spend hours sitting and creating the little builds, and I still hold those memories dear to my heart. I’m sure most of us have nostalgic and heartwarming memories associated with LEGO blocks from our childhood, as well as the not-so-heartwarming ones of stepping on them with our feet and feeling an insane amount of pain shoot up our legs. But nowadays LEGO is no longer considered child’s play. Master builders and LEGO enthusiasts all over the world have been creating impressive LEGO builds, and we’ve curated a few of our favorites for you!

1. LEGO Popcorn Machine

This charming LEGO Popcorn Machine is built by Dimexart, and created entirely using LEGO blocks! The build brings to mind the image of the iconic popcorn machines you typically see in movie theaters. The machine features a glorious retro-style theme and is built using 955 pieces. Interestingly, even the popcorn is made from LEGO blocks!

2. LEGO A-frame Cabin

The iconic A-frame cabin is one of the most appealing and visually memorable home styles since its inception in the 1950s. And LEGO user Norton74 beautifully captured the essence of the A-frame cabin with this adorable LEGO build. The LEGO cabin feels amazingly real, and features immaculately detailed insides, with every corner revealing something new.

3. The LEGO Ideas Tabletop Air Hockey

The LEGO Ideas Tabletop Air Hockey kit perfectly captures the fun and joy of slinging a puck from the left to right, as you attempt to score a goal while protecting your own post. There is no air involved in this build, and it is fan-made by LordFamousTulip100 and has garnered nearly 1000 votes on the global LEGO forum.

4. LEGO Miller’s Planet Scene

This iconic Miller’s Planet scene from the Interstellar movie was recreated by LEGO builder Minibrick Productions, and it features the ranger aircraft, astronauts Cooper and Brad, and the shapeshifting robots TARS and Case. Both McConaughey and Hathaway come outfitted in their space suits, while the robots have repositionable arms that let them walk like humans.

5. The LEGO® Jurassic World Dinosaur Fossils: T. rex Skull

The LEGO® Jurassic World Dinosaur Fossils: T. rex Skull (76964) is designed to be the first Jurassic World set intended for museum-like display. The 577-piece set consists of a T. Rex skull with an opening jaw, and a stand to display it. The unique build also comes along with an info plaque, an amber piece at the back, and a fossilized footprint.

The post 5 Top LEGO Creations That LEGO Enthusiasts Need To Get Their Hands On & Build first appeared on Yanko Design.

Word of Mouth: Art and Culture on the Faroe Islands

Our spectacular return to the small Nordic nation


Word of Mouth: Art and Culture on the Faroe Islands

Our spectacular return to the small Nordic nation

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by Austa Somvichian-Clausen

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The Faroe Islands, a small Nordic nation located in between Iceland and Norway, is a destination at glorious odds with itself. Just a hundred years ago, roads and cars did not exist across its eighteen mountainous islets. Instead, its inhabitants, the Faroese, would opt to trek long distances across its fields and over mountains, paddle across its rivers and lakes, and ride on horseback to wherever they sought to go. Goods were transported around the islands by horse cart and ferry. 

Today, they possess the world’s only underground roundabout, lit at its core with brilliant shades of green and blue and decorated with an art installation by Trondur Patursson that depicts a ring of people holding hands. Part of a subsea tunnel network, it helps link the capital of Tórshavn with the second most populous island, Eysturoy. In downtown Tórshavn, visitors can now find unique restaurants and chic local boutiques, but can also stroll the centuries-old community of Reyni, with its grass roofs and black timber that stand like a screenshot in time. 

by Austa Somvichian-Clausen

A country of only 50,000 people (and twice as many sheep), the Faroes feel both ancient and brand new, as younger generations discover ways to maintain a connection with their cultural roots while reaching toward the future and sharing their findings with interested visitors. As such, there are tons of ways to learn more about Faroese culture during a trip there, which we suggest you should carve out at least five days for, despite its small size. 

The islands are also a natural marvel, reminiscent of Iceland (pre-tourism boom), with otherworldly jagged peaks covered in moss, lonely stretches of black sand beach and more waterfalls than you can count, some snaking, some gushing their way across the landscape. Driving from one destination to another will more than likely inspire multiple reasons to stop, gawk and photograph, from consistent double rainbows to charming seaside towns. 

by Austa Somvichian-Clausen

The National Gallery of the Faroe Islands

On the topic of a nation discovering itself, there is perhaps no greater example than in its quickly evolving arts scene. Visit their National Gallery, conveniently located in downtown Tórshavn, and you’ll see what we mean. The oldest documented examples of Faroese art are there, neo-biological illustration style paintings of birds, only from the late 1800s. 

A potential hypothesis for the nation’s late entrance to art, museum curator Anna Maria Dam Ziska informed us, is the level of isolation the Faroese experienced up until a century ago—making it difficult not only to find supplies for creating art, but also a community to share their creations with. It’s fascinating, considering the earliest direct evidence of human settlement on the Faroe Islands dates all the way back to the arrival of the Vikings in around AD 800, and recent studies suggest even earlier habitation is distinctly possible. 

Regardless, over the past several decades, artists on the Faroe Islands have finally begun to flourish—finding their own artistic voices that are worth a listen. Unencumbered by the presence of a “traditional” style of painting there, many have taken their own artistic liberties with surprisingly bright colors to depict the natural landscapes and wonders of the Faroe Islands. Many Faroese artists are especially inspired by the sea, which a large bulk of the country makes their living off from fishing and whaling. 

One particular artist, Sigrun Gunnarsdóttir, stands out. Combining surprisingly quirky and sentimental elements of religious iconography, from tiny little birds painted randomly in the corner of her mother’s living room to an imagined church sitting at the base of the Faroe Islands’ largest mountain, which her studio looks onto and inspires many of her most popular works. Another Faroese industry currently finding its footing, filmmaking, recently saw the exciting release of a Wes Anderson-esque documentary about Gunnarsdóttir. Called Heartist, the charming feature just claimed the Best International Documentary Award at the Los Angeles Documentary Film Festival. 

by Austa Somvichian-Clausen

Shop and Dine in Downtown Tórshavn

The capital city of Tórshavn is oozing with charm and interest, both ancient and modern. Before shopping, make sure to grab a coffee and walk the docks, making your way through the narrow cobblestone streets of historic á Reyni. The oldest neighborhood in the city, its black-tarred wooden houses with grass roofs date back to the 14th century. Past Reyn, walk over to the rocky outcrop between two harbors known as Tinganes. The original place of gathering for the Viking parliament, you can still spot old stone etchings like a Viking sundial. 

Next, stroll over to Guðrun & Guðrun, a local designer known for their creative uses of Faroese wool. Not the softest variety of wool, breed more for strength and weather resistance, Guðrun & Guðrun takes a unique approach of combining it with other varieties of wool and alpaca, and using it to add creative textural touches to jumpers and more. A women-owned and operated shop (founded by two women named Guðrun), their designs shot to fame after being worn in the hit Danish drama The Killing

Art lovers will also want to make sure to pay a visit to Steinprent, a gallery and lithographic studio located on the water by the boat docks. Downstairs, find paintings and prints by local artists, then head upstairs to witness the process of stone lithography. Each print at Steinprent is rolled by hand on limestone, making them the perfect Faroese souvenir. 

by Austa Somvichian-Clausen

Attend a Music Festival in the Homes of Locals (HOYMA) 

Another fascinating tenet of Faroese culture is the way their national music scene is quickly evolving. Prior to the introduction of roads on the island, the only documented Faroese music that existed was in the form of ballads—long, mournful, heartfelt ballads. They sung these ballads, and spoken word music, while dancing the “chain dance,” their national dance that consists of a two-then-one step, linking arms in a circle all the while. This dance and its accompanying ballads are intrinsic to Faroese culture, serving as a time capsule for its native language, history and myth. 

It wasn’t until a legal import embargo was lifted in 1856 that musical instruments were introduced into the country, and since then the Faroese have been leaning into the rhythm. A visit to the music center in downtown Tórshavn, called Tutl, will likely yield several local vinyl records to purchase, but perhaps also a small show by a local band or musician, depending on your timing. While in the shop, this author listened to a pianist and bass duo that also introduced us to Faroese “grotto music”—concerts played from inside sea caves around the island. Without an official concert hall to perform in, locals have gotten extremely creative about their venues.

Every autumn, for instance, they put on a unique music festival called HOYMA, and are currently expanding their plans to have smaller HOYMA performances throughout the year. A tongue-in-cheek phonetic spelling of the Faroese word for “home,” HOYMA is a one-day festival that takes place entirely in local homes. Families open their doors to artists who play unplugged musical sets in their living rooms, and pass around, to new guests and family alike, a single cup and bottle of akvavit—a variation of schnapps that tastes like a less jarring version of ouzo. Fill the small cup and drink as much as you’d like before passing both on to the next person. Many homes will also put out platters of food, from cured salmon toasts to small bowls of boiled potatoes and cod, which you can top with a sauce made from the fermented bowels of a sheep.

by Austa Somvichian-Clausen

See (and hike to) Stunning Waterfalls 

One of the most striking features of the Faroese landscape is its many waterfalls, and luckily you won’t have to look for long to find them. In fact, you’ll see some of them from the window of your plane as you taxi at the airport upon arrival. Scattered across the country, though, are some truly mind boggling ones, which somehow put the other one thousand waterfalls to shame. One is Múlafossur, which you don’t have to drive up close to for the best view. 

Instead, park before the entrance to the town of Gásadalurand and walk down a slightly hidden path that yields a viewpoint from across the waterfall—one that is perhaps becoming most synonymous with the Faroe Islands’ unique natural beauty. The iconic foss sprays its way down into the ocean, surrounded on both sides by jagged coastal cliff. The small, secluded village of Gásadaluron appears in the background. 

Also gorgeous is the multi-tiered Fossa, which you can park nearly right in front of and walk all the way up to, if your shoes provide you enough traction to not slip on the wet rocks leading up to it. Either way, Staring up at the enormous waterfall is a great photo moment, and also one that simply makes you feel small in a very cool way. Water, falling from the sky and the rocks, splashing up in foamy waves against the islands’ shores, is superlatively intrinsic to Faroese culture. 

by Austa Somvichian-Clausen

Taste Subsea Vodka at the Faer Isles Distillery

See previous statement about the Faroese connection to water, then leave it to them to produce the world’s first subsea vodka, distilled using fresh water found from a thousand-year-old source below the seabed. The result is a uniquely flavorful vodka with a rounded mouthfeel meant for sipping rather than shooting down. It helps that distilled seaweed was also added during the process, lending a unique umami. 

That’s just one product by Faer Isles Distillery, which co-founder Dánial Hoydal tells us was just finally approved to sell their own bottles at their tasting room as of this week (they launched their first products in 2021)—another striking example of the quickly evolving culture and society on the islands. Up until a few years ago, distilling spirits of any kind was actually banned on the island entirely. Now, Faer Isles has its own akvavit and dry gin in addition to the Subsea vodka, and even has their first Faroese whiskey in the works. 

Driving us down the road to their barrel house, also still in the works, Hoydal tells us excitedly about other releases they are working on, including a gin that spotlights a “truffle seaweed,” in addition to the whiskey that they plan to bottle in 2026. The half-finished barrel house sits on the edge of a dramatic cliff—with barrels overlooking a precarious drop into the sea as wind whips around the open industrial room. When asked whether this unfinished environment might affect the final product, Hoydal says, “I hope so.” 

"Do you like it, corporate overlords?" asks commenter

Gehry Partners Burbank Warner Bros

In this week’s comments update, readers are discussing an extension of media company Warner Bros’ headquarters in Burbank, completed by LA architecture studio Gehry Partners.

The complex features two distinctive facades – glass intended to evoke the form of icebergs is interspersed with steel facades modelled on the art deco-style buildings of early Hollywood.

Warner Bros extension in California by Gehry Partners
Gehry Partners references icebergs and Hollywood for Warner Bros building

“The dystopian corporate hellscape building is finished”

Some readers weren’t fully convinced by the design. “Whether you reference it as an iceberg, rock formation, or crystal cluster, it is still a boring, heavy-handed clunker,” wrote Marius.

“Ah yes, the dystopian corporate hellscape building is finished,” said Richard Nelson. “Do you like it, corporate overlords?” they asked.

Daniel Shirk was a little less scathing. For them, the complex was “pleasant but nothing great – Gehry on autopilot”.

Pleasant or hellish? Join the discussion ›

Heatherwick Studio Azabudai Hills development Tokyo
Heatherwick Studio unveils undulating district designed as “one of Tokyo’s greenest urban areas”

“The overall effect is intriguing”

Readers struggled to reach a consensus about the Azabudai Hills development in Tokyo by Heatherwick Studio, which is defined by curving roofs topped with greenery.

There was too much going on for Idracula, who asked “what am I looking at?”. “Too many parts to this puzzle,” they concluded.

Marius chimed in to say “Italian pizza toppings are kept simple to showcase their quality – grand philosophy”. The project also left a bad taste for Blau, who thought “the whole thing is heinously overcooked”.

Adding some nuance to the discussion was JZ. They acknowledged that “it looks like a mess and will require an immense amount of maintenance”. However, ultimately they resolved that “the overall effect is intriguing”.

Meanwhile, Heywood Floyd reminded their fellow commenters that “we’ve certainly seen more offensive ideas executed less confidently”. They went on to say: “I feel like everyone is just pilling on Heathwerwick at this point”.

Which side are you on? Join the discussion ›

JPMorgan HQ by Foster + Partners
Foster + Partners tops out supertall skyscraper for JPMorgan HQ at 270 Park Avenue

“Diamonds, on Park Avenue? Groundbreaking” 

Readers were also discussing the news that Foster + Partners has completed the framing for JPMorgan Chase headquarters at 270 Park Avenue.

“Diamonds, on Park Avenue?” asked Franc Lea. “Groundbreaking” they mocked.

Ken Steffes was also unimpressed by the design’s lack of originality: “Wow, another steel and mirrored glass box with an exoskeleton – how creative”.

“It’s big, that’s for sure” commented Souji. However, they thought “the design is so weak – switching the old SOM building for this is a shame”.

Do you have a different take? Join the discussion ›

Comments update

Dezeen is the world’s most commented architecture and design magazine, receiving thousands of comments each month from readers. Keep up to date on the latest discussions on our comments page and subscribe to our weekly Debate newsletter, where we feature the best reader comments from stories in the last seven days. 

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Gensler to add planted balconies to Foster+ Partners' former City Hall

Render of City Hall renovation by Gensler

London’s former City Hall, which was designed by British studio Foster+ Partners, is set to be renovated and extended as part of an overhaul by US architecture studio Gensler.

The vacant building, renamed as 110 The Queen’s Walk, is being transformed into a mixed-use scheme by Gensler for its owner – the Kuwait-owned developer St Martins.

Gensler’s current plans include the extension of its floors and the introduction of ground floor retail facilities, while landscape architecture studio LDA Design revamps the adjoining public realm.

City Hall London
Gensler is set to overhaul the former City Hall in London. Photo is by Garry Knight

Completed in 2002 beside Tower Bridge on the south bank of the Thames, the former City Hall is one of London’s landmark buildings. It is known for its slanting glass shell, designed by Foster without a conventional front or back and to visualise the idea of transparency in politics.

According to St Martins, the building is being updated to transform it into “a forward-looking mixed-use destination”.

Building labelled at-risk buildings

City Hall was left vacant in December 2021 when its former tenant, the Greater London Authority (GLA), relocated to the Royal Victoria Dock in Newham as part of its cost-cutting measures.

In light of this, the Twentieth Century Society labelled the building as being at risk of alteration or demolition. The charity also called for the building to be listed, but an application has previously been rebuffed by Historic England.

While Gensler has yet to comment on its designs, a representative from St Martins said the project is focusing on “safeguarding” the building’s character.

Detail view of propsoed City Hall renovation
The plans involve the addition of planted balconies

“Our ambition has centred around the modernisation of the building into re-imagined, open mixed-use accommodation, all the while safeguarding its intrinsic character,” said representative Charlie Prentis.

“Through sensitive design, we aim to strike the optimal balance to ensure it remains a highly sought-after destination for both Londoners and visitors to London Bridge City,” he continued.

“Our focus is on sustainability and an expanded biodiverse public realm, complemented by contemporary designed workspace, shops, cafés and restaurants. Our proposal offers a diverse array of amenities for all to appreciate.”

Floors will be extended and balconies added

Details of the proposal that have been revealed so far include the extension of floorplates and, as shown in the render, the addition of planted balconies.

Meanwhile, the ground floor will be updated with cafes, shops and restaurants.

In the render, the balconies are shown in place of sections of the iconic curved glazing, which St Martins said will be replaced to improve the building’s energy performance.

However, the developer has said the plans also “seek to maximise the retention of the building’s structure” wherever possible in order to preserve its “circular footprint and sculpted form”.

These plans will be exhibited by St Martins in two exhibitions scheduled for Thursday 7 and Saturday 9 December 2023 at Hay’s Galleria. The public will be invited to submit their feedback before the proposals are reviewed and a planning application is submitted.

Other well-known buildings in London that the Twentieth Century Society has said are at risk of “demolition or disfigurement” are the Channel 4 headquarters in Westminster by British architect Rogers and the post-war Museum of London and Bastion House buildings on the corner of Grade II-listed Barbican Estate.

The render is by Gensler.

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Jonathan Tuckey Design transforms Norwegian factory into industrial Trevarefabrikken hotel

Trevarefabrikken hotel in Norway by Jonathan Tuckey Design

London architecture studio Jonathan Tuckey Design has converted a former factory in Norway into a hotel and wellness centre, celebrating the traces of its previous uses.

Named Trevarefabrikken, the concrete-framed building in Henningsvaer in the Lofoten archipelago originally opened in the 1940s as a cod liver oil factory and carpentry workshop, before being abandoned.

View outside the Trevarefabrikken hotel in Norway by Jonathan Tuckey Design
The hotel and wellness centre is located in an archipelago in Norway

In 2014, four friends purchased the dilapidated space with a view to refurbishing it with the help of the local community. Jonathan Tuckey Design was tasked with reworking its open-plan interior into a series of guest rooms and a restaurant.

Despite this radical change in use, Jonathan Tuckey Design looked to minimise alterations and retain as much of the “historical memory” of the factory as possible, including its board-marked concrete structure, rough rendered walls and even rusting machinery.

Trevarefabrikken hotel in Norway by Jonathan Tuckey Design
The building was formerly a cod liver oil factory and carpentry workshop

“The structural bones themselves were key to defining the layout of the space,” explained project architect Dan Stilwell. “Unexpectedly deep concrete ribs ran throughout the interior, supported on equally unapologetically chunky columns,” he continued.

“Rather than removing or adding to this structure, we looked at how to keep what was initially designed as a single warehouse space and divide it into intimate rooms that feel very separate and private,” Stilwell added.

Bedroom at the Trevarefabrikken hotel in Norway
Bespoke wooden fittings are painted pale green

On Trevarefabrikken’s ground floor, visitors enter into a large cafe and bar framed by concrete columns, with a small reception area and staircase leading up into the guest areas.

Above, a series of bedrooms flank a dark hallway ending at an industrial door. This leads to the light-filled Trandamperiet restaurant, which overlooks the Vestfjorden sea through large windows.

Formerly the cod liver oil production area, the first floor is punctuated by retained timber funnels and original machinery. Exposed concrete walls and ceilings in the bedrooms are softened by bespoke wooden fittings painted pale green.

“We were fascinated with the board-formed concrete surface, where the grain of long-past timber was imprinted in the surface for eternity before the board itself decayed,” explained Stilwell.

“The machines themselves were kept not only a remnant of the past but also slightly mysterious sea-monster-like creatures greeting guests on the path to their rooms,” he added.

Bedroom at the Trevarefabrikken hotel in Norway
Concrete walls have been left exposed

Throughout, fittings and details have been created using both new and reused materials, including restored white tilework and steps up into the bedrooms that are formed from reclaimed bricks.

Trevarefabrikken’s existing window openings were retained, with an additional layer of insulation and wooden shutters deepening the openings.

Cafe space at the Trevarefabrikken hotel in Norway by Jonathan Tuckey Design
A cafe and bar are located on the ground floor

“We highlighted the feeling of hunkering down in a harsh landscape to seek refuge from the crashing waves,” says Stilwell.

“This will be left to age naturally as before, settling into the island landscape the same way the building is settling into its newfound guise,” he added.

Trevarefabrikken hotel Jonathan Tuckey Design
Existing windows in the building were retained

Currently, the second floor remains a “work in progress”, with the potential to provide further flexible accommodation, an events space or a bar in future stages of the project.

Reimagining existing buildings is a key focus of the work of Jonathan Tuckey Design. The studio’s previous projects include the restoration and extension of a traditional farmstead in northern Italy and the reworking of a historic home in Cornwall with a stone-clad extension.

The photography is by Andrea Gjestvang.

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AYANEO SLIDE Handheld PC design demonstrates another way to play games on the go

Handheld gaming devices are in vogue again, and not just the smartphones we always have in our hands these days. The success of the Nintendo Switch has given rise to a new breed of portable PCs built specifically with gaming in mind, and now even big brands like ASUS and Lenovo are playing in this very niche field. While both the Switch and the Steam Deck have become the poster children for this category of devices, they aren’t the only way to play PC games anywhere and everywhere. Another contender is pushing a new entry into the race, and this one hides a QWERTY keyboard for those times when you need keys rather than buttons to play, communicate, or even work.

Designer: AYANEO

Handheld PCs like the Steam Deck, ASUS ROG Ally, and Lenovo Legion Go are probably PC gamers’ dreams come true. They allow them to play their favorite modern and even retro titles without having to worry about finding a place to set up a laptop. That convenience, however, comes at the price of relying only on controller buttons and joysticks for movement, while being at the mercy of a touchscreen and an on-screen keyboard for everything else. That’s not a problem for something like the Nintendo Switch with games specifically designed for such an input scheme, but for a PC that can potentially play and do anything, it’s severely limiting.

The AYANEO SLIDE addresses this problem by introducing a physical QWERTY keyboard that doesn’t get in the way when you don’t actually need it. Its trick is to hide that keyboard underneath the display using a sliding mechanism, not unlike the slider keyboards of smartphones from long ago. That makes it trivial to type out messages for games that require chatting with other players or to even play games that might not fully support game controllers. And since you can easily hide it when you’re done, it doesn’t take up too much extra space when it’s not in use.

Granted, the AYANEO SLIDE is hardly the first to use this design to address the problem of an absent keyboard. The recent GPD WIN 4 and the old Sony VAIO UX from 2006 both used a sliding mechanism to hide a QWERTY keyboard. AYANEO’s design, however, also lets you set the screen at an angle when you slide it up, which offers a slightly more ergonomic viewing angle compared to a completely flat screen.

While the addition of a hidden keyboard does fix one problem, the design has some drawbacks in the current implementation. Given the large size of the device, thumb-typing on that keyboard isn’t exactly comfortable or fast. A sliding mechanism also invites trouble because of moving parts. An alternative design, one employed by AYAENO rival GPD, uses a mini laptop form factor to offer a different way to mix gaming and typing on the go, but that also brings its own problems in terms of portability and bulk.

The post AYANEO SLIDE Handheld PC design demonstrates another way to play games on the go first appeared on Yanko Design.

Ena chair by ITO Design for Okamura

Ena chair by ITO Design for Okamura

Dezeen Showroom: ITO Design has sought to create a stylish seating option for collaborative spaces in the Ena chair, designed for Japanese brand Okamura.

The Ena chair has a resin seat and backrest fixed to a minimal metal tube frame and is available in six monochromatic colour options that aim to enhance the cohesiveness and aesthetic impact of the design.

Ena chair by ITO Design for Okamura
The Ena chair is designed to be light and stylish for flexible collaborative spaces

The chair is designed with features that make it suitable for flexible collaboration spaces in offices. It is stackable up to three chairs high, light and easy to move and it is optionally available with casters to allow for dynamic movement during meetings.

It also has a gently curved seat and backrest to cradle the sitter’s body, and can be customised with an integrated seat pad for enhanced comfort.

Ena chair by ITO Design for Okamura
The chair optionally comes with casters

ITO Design strived to unite functionality, aesthetics and sustainability in the Ena chair by simplifying the structure and fixing the seat and frame together, which the designers say reduced the number of components needed.

These choices result in a decreased level of embodied carbon during the chair’s life cycle, according to Okamura.

Product: Ena
Designer: ITO Design
Brand: Okamura
Contact: chicago@us.okamura.com

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"Our focus extends to building long-term relationships, not just acquiring talent," says Studio Piet Boon

Photo of Studio Piet Boon's chief design officer Roland Kokkeler and studio manager Tim Vogel

Continuing the Dezeen Jobs: How We Recruit series, Dezeen talks to Studio Piet Boon’s chief design officer Roland Kokkeler and studio manager Tim Vogel about the changes in skills required to work in the design industry.

Sophie Chapman: Can you discuss your recent and upcoming projects?

Roland Kokkeler: As a multidisciplinary design studio, we are involved in interior, architecture and product design, undertaking a wide variety of projects and product launches throughout the year.

Currently, we are engaged in 40 ongoing studio projects, ranging from inner-city apartments, hotel projects and freestanding villas. This year, we launched a diverse outdoor collection at the Salone del Mobile, and at the beginning of October, we revealed an extensive rug collection with CC-Tapis called Layers.

We are currently in the process of developing several new furniture items for the Piet Boon collection, which will be unveiled at the upcoming Milan fair. Additionally, we have an exciting collaboration with another well-known Italian brand that we will be announcing shortly.

Photo of lighting installation by Studio Piet Boon
Studio Piet Boon is a design firm based in Amsterdam

Sophie Chapman: What do you think has changed with recruitment throughout the last 10 years?

Tim Vogel: Our recruitment strategy has evolved significantly over the past decade. Studio Piet Boon now has five different design teams, each working on different projects, including a specialised team dedicated to product design and creating items such as furniture.

This transformation is all about fostering creative cross-pollination, which has resulted in a better definition of internal divisions and job roles due to our broad scope. We remain multidisciplinary, embracing cross-functional tasks as needed throughout the year.

We also prioritise self-starting and ownership among our team members and support employee wellbeing – offering free lunches, exercise at the office and flexible working options with the aim of giving more responsibility to our employees to “get the job done”.

In a nutshell, our current recruitment strategy reflects Studio Piet Boon’s spirit, where creativity and collaboration thrive, and we highly value our unique team.

Sophie Chapman: Have these changes had more of an impact on specific roles?

Roland Kokkeler: The designer’s role has evolved significantly due to our studio’s growth and the impact of IT developments. Designers now work in a more complex digital environment and have expanded their skill set to cover architecture, interior design and furniture.

This transformation enables our designers to contribute across various disciplines, enhancing their adaptability and versatility in the ever-changing design landscape.

Photo of furniture by Studio Piet Boon
The brand uses artificial intelligence (AI) to improve efficiency in its recruitment process

Sophie Chapman: Are there any skill sets that you don’t need candidates to have anymore and why?

Tim Vogel: Our evolution from a local Dutch studio to a global design firm has brought about significant changes in the skill sets we prioritise.

In the past, we heavily relied on analogue design, where handcraftsmanship and manual sketching were fundamental. However, as the industry has shifted towards digital design, these traditional skills are no longer a primary requirement for our candidates.

Today, we are looking for professionals who can seamlessly adapt to our international and high-end environment. Effective communication and collaboration at a high-end level have become crucial, especially when working with clients and partners from different parts of the world.

We seek candidates who can thrive in this diverse, dynamic and demanding landscape, where a strong grasp of digital design tools and the ability to work within a global context takes precedence over the traditional analogue skills of the past.

Photo of Roland Kokkeler, chief design officer at Studio Piet Boon
Roland Kokkeler is the chief design officer at Studio Piet Boon

Sophie Chapman: How multidisciplinary is your team at the moment?

Roland Kokkeler: At Studio Piet Boon, we embrace a multidisciplinary approach, which is essential as our studio has expanded into various design fields.

While we’ve introduced more defined roles, our commitment to all-around skill development remains strong, spanning from FF&E to architecture. This adaptability is central to our practice’s success.

Moreover, we highly value-focused specialisation in certain roles to lead in design innovation compared to other studios. Our team maintains a strong, family-like unity, ensuring our multidisciplinary approach is effectively realised.

It’s also worth noting that, alongside our multidisciplinary focus, we have well-defined product design roles.

Our practice thrives on a multidisciplinary approach, the balance of specialisation in certain roles, and the strong unity of our team, all of which collectively define our identity and drive our success.

Sophie Chapman: Looking into the future, where do you see recruitment heading?

Tim Vogel: In the future, we anticipate a shift in recruitment towards a greater emphasis on soft skills and the ‘fit’ within our team.

Our focus extends to building long-term relationships, not just acquiring talent. We aim to attract and challenge our existing team members, emphasising talent retention and providing comprehensive support for their growth and development.

Photo of Tim Vogel, studio manager at Studio Piet Boon
Tim Vogel is the firm’s studio manager

Sophie Chapman: Is there anything you’re doing differently during the interview and application process compared to 10 years ago?

Tim Vogel: Yes, our interview and application process has evolved over the past decade. With our international scope, we now utilise digital tools like video calls for initial assessments, which has been successful. However, for the final decision, in-person conversations remain crucial.

AI allows us to scan job sites for specific keywords, particularly during talent scarcity, enabling us to proactively approach potential new team members who are the right fit for our studio – making our recruitment process more efficient, diverse and adaptable.

Once we receive a portfolio, we focus on understanding a candidate’s individual contributions to their showcased projects, providing a more comprehensive assessment.

Photo of Layers rug by Studio Piet Boon and CC-Tapis
Studio Piet Boon collaborated with CC-Tapis to create the Layers rug collection

Sophie Chapman: What advice can you give people looking for a role in the company?

Tim Vogel: For those looking to join our company, we advise focusing on gaining experience and all-around skills, as our current designer roles are heavily experience-based.

Alongside traditional hard skills, soft skills have become increasingly important – collaboration, leadership, presentation skills and emotional intelligence, for example.

Building up the experience takes time and dedication. As a new designer, be a ‘sponge,’ absorb knowledge from experienced team members and commit to long-term learning and growth.

We invest significant time in aligning new team members with our studio’s DNA, aiming for lasting relationships. Understanding what it takes to create Studio Piet Boon designs can take years, so we look for individuals with commitment and ambition to learn and contribute to our design philosophy.

Find out more about Studio Piet Boon by visiting its website.

View current and future vacancies by checking their company profile on Dezeen Jobs.

Dezeen Jobs: How We Recruit series

This article is part of Dezeen Jobs: How We Recruit, a series of interviews to mark Dezeen Jobs turning 15, which explores changing hiring practices and future recruitment needs for companies around the world.

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BIG reveals stepped housing overlooking Aegean Sea

Park Rise housing at Ellinikon in Athens by BIG

Danish architecture studio BIG has unveiled the design for a luxury residential building with cascading terraces named Park Rise, which will form part of the Ellinikon city masterplan near Athens.

Designed as the centrepiece of Ellinikon‘s Little Athens neighbourhood, Park Rise will contain 88 apartments stacked in a staggered arrangement of two gently curving wings, the tallest of which will rise to 50 metres.

Park Rise housing at Ellinikon in Athens by BIG
Park Rise will be the centrepiece of a coastal neighbourhood in Ellinikon

The Ellinikon masterplan is being developed to transform the grounds of Athen’s old airport into a 15-minute city made up of neighbourhoods arranged around a 200-hectare coastal park.

BIG designed Park Rise for developer Lamda Development, which claims the wider Ellinikon development is “Europe’s largest urban regeneration project”.

Park Rise housing in Ellinikon by BIG
It has a stepped form that ascends to 50 metres

The geometric residential building will be separated into five cores – two will rise to five storeys, two will reach eight storeys and one will stand at 12 storeys.

Apartments will range in size from one-bed to five-bedroom, each of which will have minimalist interiors with views of the nearby Aegean Sea, surrounding park or mountains of Attica.

Informed by classic Greek columns, the exterior will be clad in off-white glass-reinforced concrete with a fluted surface pattern.

Oak flooring will line the interior floors, while kitchens will feature veined porcelain surfaces and bathrooms covered in stone or ceramic tile.

Park Rise housing in Athens by BIG
Residences will overlook the sea and surrounding landscape

Additional amenities at Park Rise will include fitness facilities, an indoor swimming pool and a private garden, and penthouse apartments will also have their own private swimming pools.

As part of the Little Athens neighbourhood, Park Rise was designed to provide modern apartments that embrace “the open spirit of Athenian living”.

Located by the northwestern coastline of Ellinikon, the housing will be within walking distance of the beach and pathways will connect the building to shops, offices, restaurants and wellness facilities within 15 minutes.

Park Rise appartments in Athens by BIG
The exterior will have a fluted surface finished

Alongside BIG’s Park Rise, a 200-metre-tall plant-covered skyscraper designed by UK studio Foster + Partners is also planned to form part of the Ellinikon masterplan.

Recently completed projects by BIG include a 3D-printed house in Texas and the studio’s first supertall skyscraper, a commercial tower in New York City wrapped with spiralling stepped terraces.

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