Form Follows Function: NASA's Zero-Gravity Drinking Cup

This unusual-looking cup was designed by Dr. Mark Weislogel, a former NASA research scientist and expert in fluid dynamics. It has the unusual provenance of having been prototyped not on Earth, but in space.

As the story goes, Dr. Weislogel learned that Donald Pettit, an astronaut doing experiments with fluids on the International Space Station in 2008, was getting sick of drinking out of the pouch-and-straw arrangement astronauts use. Weislogel sent Pettit diagrams of something that could possibly be cobbled together on the ISS, using available materials.

Using Mylar sheeting and tape, Pettit created this primitive “cup.” It’s just a sheet with two opposite edges taped together and an added bottom.

The arrangement uses the principal of “capillary channel flow,” meaning that liquid is naturally drawn towards the crevice-like edge of the cup, and will stay there. Pettit tested it out, and it worked:

With the liquid gathered in the crevice, it’s easy for astronauts to slurp the fluid out.

However, the primitive shape also provides a sharp and unfriendly point right where the drinker’s mouth goes. Back down on Earth Weislogel, who also worked as a professor in the Thermal & Fluid Science Group at Portland State University, refined the design with a more mouth-friendly shape at the drinking edge:

These are now in use on the ISS.

Here’s how the astronauts fill and use them:

As interesting as the shape is, sadly there’s not much application for it on Earth. Nevertheless, a company called Spaceware will sell you an SLA 3D-printed one for $650.

It’s “most definitely not dishwasher safe,” the company writes.

Aquahalo shower by Michael Neumayr for Dornbracht

Aquahalo shower by Michael Neumayr for Dornbracht

Dezeen Showroom: designer Michael Neumayr worked with German brand Dornbracht on a shower that brings a dynamic and sculptural bathing experience to the bathroom.

The Aquahalo shower creates an interplay of water and light through its structure, which consists of a metal ring attached to the ceiling at four points, crowned by a centrally-placed downlight.

Aquahalo shower by Michael Neumayr for Dornbracht
The Aquahalo shower creates an interplay of water and light

Three modes offer different combinations of water flow and light, one of which makes the water fall like a curtain and another that creates a fountain within the ring.

The Aquahalo was modelled after classic crystal chandeliers and draws on Gustavian style, a Swedish version of French neoclassicism from the time of King Ludwig XVI.

Aquahalo shower by Michael Neumayr for Dornbracht
It is partly inspired by classic chandeliers

“My original inspiration was a chandelier that hung in my parent’s dining room,” said Neumayr. “The glint of the lead crystal and the way in which it reflected the light always reminded me of sparkling water as a child.”

“In this respect, Aquahalo is a contemporary, minimalist interpretation of a Gustavian candlestick.”

The fixture comes in a selection of metallic finishes to suit a wide range of bathroom aesthetics.


Product details:

Product: Aquahalo shower
Designer: Michael Neumayr
Brand: Dornbracht
Contact: mail@dornbracht.com

Colours/finishes: polished chrome, polished champagne (22kt gold), brushed chrome, brushed champagne (22kt gold), matt black
Dimensions: outer diameter 605 millimetres, opening diameter 465 millimetres, height of the ring 50mm millimetres

Dezeen Showroom

Dezeen Showroom offers an affordable space for brands to launch new products and showcase their designers and projects to Dezeen’s huge global audience. For more details email showroom@dezeen.com.

Dezeen Showroom is an example of partnership content on Dezeen. Find out more about partnership content here.

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New York Jets reintroduces jet to team logo in nostalgic rebrand

New York Jets logo and rebrand

The New York Jets NFL team has brought back a jet aircraft to its logo as part of its latest rebrand, which is a nod to its 1980s Sack Exchange era.

Designed to combine “coolness and nostalgia, the rebrand reintroduces a jet – the American football team’s namesake – to the logo for the first time since 1997.

The design is a modernised update of a logo originally designed by Jim Pons, the team’s former video director and former bass guitarist for Frank Zappa’s band, The Mothers of Invention. The original logo was used during the 1970s, ’80s and ’90s and is connected to the team’s fondly-remembered New York Sack Exchange era.

New York Jets logo and rebrand
The New York Jets has unveiled an updated logo

“We’ve modernised it, I think it’s an improvement,” said New York Jets vice president of fan commerce Chris Pierce.

“It is a piece of iconic architecture in our history and certainly a moment in time for New York,” he told Dezeen.

“It feels like we are taking an asset from this great movie on this amazing stage – there was buzz about the ’70s and ’80s in New York City – and bringing it back to life.”

New York Jets logo and rebrand
It is a return to the team’s 1970s, 80s and 90s logo

While the logo is a clear nod to the club’s history, the design team aimed to ensure that the team’s rebrand also looks to the future.

“There’s an element of coolness and an element of nostalgia,” said Pierce. “As much as this feels like a look backward and honouring the history and legacy, there’s something so optimistic and forward thinking and part of that is the design of the logo.”

“It’s italicised, the plane is moving. So you get this notion of a forward-thinking logo as much as it’s something from our history,” he continued.

Jets rebranded helmet
The logo will be used across the brand and on the team’s helmets

The team neatened up the original design, which was hand-drawn by Pons in the late 1970s and used as the team’s primary logo from 1978 until 1997, to make it “stronger and slightly bolder”.

The spacing between the letters has been adjusted to be more consistent, while the tail of the J is taller and thicker and the jet itself is more pointed.

“We put that logo under the microscope and asked is this perfect for applications that exist in 2024 that did not exist in 1978,” explained Pierce.

“We then made some modernisations and tweaks to the logo – things like the spacing between the letters, because it was a hand-drawn logo, there was some lack of consistency,” he continued.

“The tail of the aircraft and the nose, they’re more pointed. And we feel like give this element of more speed, versus the more rounded tail, the more rounded nose of the plane.”

Jets 2024 uniforms
The team has also updated its uniforms

According to Pierce, returning to the previous logo was driven by the team’s fans, particularly their reaction to the Jets using the logo last season.

“It became evident that there was a desire amongst our fans to bring back a logo that they really identified with,” he said. “And they had this deep emotional connection with, right, that they just they call for it right in terms of their response to it.”

“So for us, it was very obvious that this screams our identity, why should we not bring it back?” he added.

New York Jets 2024 uniform
The uniform is a nod to the New York Sack Exchange era

Adding the jet back to the logo also helps to explain the name of the team, which was changed from the Titans of New York in 1963 to the Jets due to its stadium’s proximity to LaGuardia Airport.

“I do think bringing the jet back and making that connection is a really important one,” explained Pierce.

“I think, in many ways, it’s even more important to the more casual fan, or the fan that doesn’t know they’re a Jets fan yet and hasn’t picked an NFL allegiance yet. I think that’s really somewhat critical.”

White uniform for New York Jets
The team has launched three uniforms

The redesigned logo forms part of a wider rebrand of the team including the launch of the Legacy Collection of uniforms, which players will wear for the next five seasons.

The three uniforms – green, white and black – will all have double-striped sleeves and single-striped legs, which match the uniforms worn in the Sack Exchange era.

While the New York Jets are updating its brand, several other NFL teams have recently announced plans to refresh their stadiums. Architecture studio Populous is designing an “intimate yet intimidating” stadium for Buffalo Bills while HOK is designing a mirrored “stadium of the future” for the Jacksonville Jaguars.

The post New York Jets reintroduces jet to team logo in nostalgic rebrand appeared first on Dezeen.

Frammento tiles by Marazzi

Frammento tiles by Marazzi

Dezeen Showroom: emulating the look of Venetian terrazzo, the Frammento tiles by Italian manufacturer Marazzi feature unique stone chip patterns designed with the help of AI.

The Frammento tiles take inspiration from Venetian seminato, an iconic type of terrazzo flooring made by mixing marble chips into cement or lime.

Frammento tiles by Marazzi
The Frammento tiles are inspired by Venetian terrazzo flooring

Here, Marazzi has used a new artificial intelligence system called DDGan – the Digital Design Generative Adversarial Network – to analyse the inspiration material and produce novel patterns in the same style.

The resulting designs feature colours and finishes not found in the traditional stone, but that maintain strong links to the original.

Frammento tiles by Marazzi
The flooring pattern is designed by AI

The Frammento collection comes in two varieties of chips: micro and macro. The micro designs feature chips of about five millimetres, clustered together for a tighter and more uniform appearance, while the macro designs have larger, more dispersed chips that contrast against the background material.

The tiles are available in three colours – Cotto, Azzurro and Verde – and three sizes. The product is anti-slip and suitable for commercial settings.


Product details:

Product: Frammento
Brand: Marazzi
Contact: info@marazzi.it

Material: porcelain
Colours/finishes: Macro Cotto, Macro Azzurro, Macro Verde, Micro Cotto, Micro Azzurro, Micro Verde
Dimensions: 120 x 120 millimetres, 60 x 120 millimetres, 60 x 60 millimetres

Dezeen Showroom

Dezeen Showroom offers an affordable space for brands to launch new products and showcase their designers and projects to Dezeen’s huge global audience. For more details email showroom@dezeen.com.

Dezeen Showroom is an example of partnership content on Dezeen. Find out more about partnership content here.

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Gaggenau to celebrate "life enhancing craftsmanship" at Villa Necchi during Milan design week

Photo of Gaggenau house in Milan

Promotion: kitchen brand Gaggenau is set to return to Villa Necchi during this year’s Milan design week with an immersive installation called The Elevation of Gravity.

Designed in partnership with Munich-based architecture studio and longtime Gaggenau collaborator 1zu33, the week-long exhibition will highlight the brand’s existing product ranges and also provide a first look at future designs.

The installation, based on a minimalist design, will be installed in the 1930s villa’s glass conservatory. It marks the second time the brand has commandeered this space following its design week event in 2022.

This year’s exhibition will serve as a launchpad for its new brand philosophy and will set the stage for a “transformative era in the world of luxury home appliances”.

As well as the chance to experience the products first-hand, visitors will be able to enjoy a programme of events at the villa, including a series of discussions, interactive sessions and workshops with thought leaders from the global architecture and design community. They can also meet the Gaggenau design, brand and product teams.

Gaggenau at Milan
Discussions, interactive sessions and workshops will take place at Gaggenau’s exhibition in Milan

“We are always excited to return to Milan,” said Gaggenau managing director Peter Goetz, describing the event as a “must-see experience” during the design week.

“The Elevation of Gravity is an architectural marvel that celebrates the magnetic attraction of convention-defying, life-enhancing craftsmanship,” he added. “You will have to be there to truly appreciate the scale of our vision.”

Gaggenau fridge
Gaggenau’s minimally designed appliances will be showcased in Milan

Villa Necchi Campiglio was designed and built between 1932 and 1935 by architect Piero Portaluppi and was famously featured in the 2009 film I Am Love, directed by Luca Guadagnino.

To visit the installation during Milan design week register here.

The Elevation of Gravity will be on show at Villa Necchi Campiglio from 16 to 21 April 2024 during Milan design week. See Dezeen Events Guide for an up-to-date list of architecture and design events taking place around the world.

Partnership content

This article was written by Dezeen for Gaggenau as part of a partnership. Find out more about Dezeen partnership content here

The post Gaggenau to celebrate “life enhancing craftsmanship” at Villa Necchi during Milan design week appeared first on Dezeen.

Rare 2001 PS1 controller modded into a quirky PlayStation handheld emulator

Game controllers today follow a standard design and format, and most of them gravitate between two or three conventions, depending on the major console brand they’re supporting. Once upon a time, however, there was a bit more variety and exploration in what controllers could look like, at least as long as they still supported all the basic controls that the machine and the games required. This gave birth to a few oddities, some of which gained widespread notoriety despite their limited availability. One of those was perhaps one of the weirdest but also rarest controllers ever made for the original PlayStation, and one such design was reshaped to become one is probably one of the most distinctive PlayStation handhelds ever crafted.

Designer: Takara Tomy (modded by Hairoh Satoh)

In 2001, PlayStation owners in Japan got a glimpse of an officially licensed controller specifically designed for the popular Game of Life video game. Unlike rectangular controllers even during that period, this custom gamepad was practically square with a circle at the top edge extending a bit beyond the border. This circle was home to a roulette wheel used in conjunction with that game, earning this Japanese-exclusive design the name “Takara Roulette Controller.”

Images courtesy of miepro_02

More than two decades later, a modder best known for his Game Boy mods has given this rarely-seen controller a new lease on life as a standalone gaming device. The spinner wheel, which has no use in any other game, was replaced by a small LCD screen that allowed the user to play games directly on it. Of course, that also means that the internals of the controller have been gutted out to make room for a small computer, probably a Raspberry Pi or one of its kind.

That alone would have been impressive enough, but the mod goes above and beyond to bring a few modern gaming conveniences. While the original controller is more or less complete when it comes to buttons, the mod adds L and R back triggers as well. The small space also has a memory card slot, USB-C charging, and speakers that truly make the gaming handheld independent and portable. Whether it’s comfortable to actually play on for long periods of time is a different question entirely.

Unfortunately, the controller clearly shows its age with the absence of analog joysticks that are now standard on modern controllers. Then again, since it’s mostly emulating PS1-era games, that’s not exactly a problem either since those titles didn’t make use of such controls. But since it’s technically using a computer that can run emulation software, it’s theoretically possible to also run games from other consoles, particularly classic titles that have simpler controls, less demanding graphics, and gameplay that’s well suited for this retro controller design.

The post Rare 2001 PS1 controller modded into a quirky PlayStation handheld emulator first appeared on Yanko Design.

The Horrific UI/UX Design of Humane's AI Pin

Startup Humane has debuted their Ai Pin, an $800 wearable AI assistant meant to be something like a smartphone without a screen. First-wave tech reviewers are all over the thing, and the reviews have been damning.

There’s two main issues with this first-of-its-kind device. The first problem, according to reviewers, is that it just doesn’t consistently work. As The Verge editor David Pierce experienced:

“Asking the AI Pin to write down that the library book sale is next week: handy! Waiting for 10 seconds while it processes, processes, and then throws a generic ‘couldn’t add that’ error message: less handy. I’d estimate that half the time I tried to call someone, it simply didn’t call. Half the time someone called me, the AI Pin would kick it straight to voicemail without even ringing.”

“In general, I would say that for every successful interaction with the AI Pin, I’ve had three or four unsuccessful ones. I’ll ask the weather in New York and get the right answer; then, I’ll ask the weather in Dubai, and the AI Pin tells me that ‘the current weather in Dubai is not available for the provided user location in New York.’ I’ll ask about ‘the thing with the presidents in South Dakota,’ and it’ll correctly tell me I mean Mount Rushmore, but then it will confidently misidentify the Brooklyn Bridge as the Triborough Bridge. And half the time — seriously, at least half — I don’t even get an answer. The system just waits, and waits, and fails.”

The second issue is that both the UI and the UX are apparently horrible. Remember that the device doesn’t have a screen, and provides feedback via a projector that projects onto your hand. This is an intriguing idea, and ought be handy, no pun intended: Hold out your mitt, see info you need.

However, to get to that point is difficult. Examples:

UI: To use the device, you must unlock it with a passcode. This is achieved by holding out your hand. A single-digit number is projected onto it. To reach a lower or higher number, you move your hand closer or further away. When you get to the relevant number, you make a pinching gesture to “accept” the number. In this manner you gesture out your entire passcode. “Using it made me feel pretty dumb,” says Engadget‘s Cherlynn Low, who demonstrates the procedure below.

UX: The Ai Pin attaches to your garment via a magnet on the inside. It should of course always be attached to your outermost garment, so the projector is not obscured. This means, in coat weather, you’ve got the thing affixed to your coat. But then you go inside, and take your coat off. To continue using the Ai Pin you detach it from your coat and attach it to your shirt. Each time you detach/re-attach it, you have to go through the passcode sequence again to unlock it.

And that’s just scratching the surface. Low—who was actually burned by the device, as it tends to overheat—describes, and most helpfully demonstrates, the laundry list of UI/UX hassles in her review:

Watching Low try to use the device, both from her POV and when she’s on camera, drove home how insane it all is, how many problems are created by removing a screen.

I don’t envy Humane’s designers. They’re trying to do something new and bold, and the idea seemed interesting on paper. Figuring out an entirely novel interface was probably a lot of work. But the end result has the user working for the technology rather than the other way around.

Heatherwick’s Vessel set to reopen with "floor-to-ceiling steel mesh"

Interior view of The Vessel by Heatherwick Studio

The Vessel viewpoint by Thomas Heatherwick is expected to reopen in New York this year, shrouded by steel netting to prevent people from jumping from its platforms.

It follows the closure of the structure in Hudson Yards in August 2021, after a 14-year-old boy became the fourth person to die there by suicide.

Related Companies, the developer behind Hudson Yards, has revealed that the Vessel is now due to reopen with more stringent suicide-prevention safety measures in place.

Vessel’s highest platform to remain closed

This will include the installation of “floor-to-ceiling steel mesh” across half of the attraction’s passable spaces, The New York Times has reported.

In addition, the highest level of the structure will remain permanently closed.

“Through a closely coordinated effort with Thomas Heatherwick and Heatherwick Studio, we have developed a plan to install floor-to-ceiling steel mesh on Vessel while also preserving the unique experience that has drawn millions of visitors from around the globe,” a spokesperson for Hudson Yards told television station CBS New York.

The Vessel by Heatherwick Studio
The Vessel by Thomas Heatherwick is expected to reopen this year

The Vessel is a honeycomb-shaped viewpoint formed of 154 staircases that meet at 80 platforms. Heatherwick Studio designed it as the centrepiece of the Hudson Yards development.

Its closure in 2021 was not the first time it had to be shut off to the public. In January 2021, it was closed after the death of a 21-year-old man at the structure.

He was the third person to die there, following the suicides of a 24-year-old woman in December 2020 and a 19-year-old man in February 2019 shortly before the structure’s official opening.

The Vessel had briefly reopened in May 2021 with updated safety measures that included a buddy system to prevent people from entering the attraction alone.

Safety concerns raised as early as 2016

Following its closure in August 2021, Related Companies chairman Stephen Ross said “we thought we did everything that would really prevent this” in an interview with the American news website The Daily Beast.

However, according to UK architecture magazine Architects’ Journal, Heatherwick Studio had also proposed safety barriers in its design, but the plans were never implemented.

Concerns about safety of the structure were raised as early as 2016, such as when Audrey Wachs of the Architect’s Newspaper said: “when you build high, folks will jump”.

The Vessel has also attracted criticism over its appearance, for being privately funded and the fact that Hudson Yards owned the rights to photographs taken at the structure.

In a talk with Dezeen in 2019, Heatherwick defended the project, stating that people “shouldn’t underestimate what it takes” to build public spaces with private money.

Two years after its closure, author Matt Shaw said “the Vessel shows us how bad the vampiric ultra-wealthy are at making public space” in an opinion piece for Dezeen.

International helplines can be found at www.befrienders.org. In the USA, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is 800-273-8255, while in the UK the Samaritans can be contacted on 116 123.

The post Heatherwick’s Vessel set to reopen with “floor-to-ceiling steel mesh” appeared first on Dezeen.

Top 10 Coffee Tables To Design The Perfect Pinterest-Worthy Living Room

The secret to an exceptional living room is a fantastic coffee table! Coffee tables function as the centerpiece of a living room, hence you need to pick one that truly livens it up, and sets the tone for it. And, once the perfect coffee table has been set, you can start building the rest of the space around it – a comfy sofa, cute side tables, exquisite lighting, and elegant decorative pieces. They are all brought together by the right coffee table! And even coffee tables are getting more innovative, unique, and well-crafted by the day! From a quirky red cuboidal coffee table that effortlessly stores your books and magazines, to a coffee table with a mesmerizing terrazzo-like pattern – these exquisite coffee table designs are all you need to completely bring together your living room, and meet your interior design goals!

1. Bookpet

Called the Bookpet, this cleverly-designed coffee table is intended to be a ‘coffee-book table’. This unique furniture design functions as an excellent storage section for your books and magazines, while also serving as an ingenious coffee table. It has a sculptural shape that artfully evolves from a double-bent cuboid, and is a truly visually exciting product.

Why is it noteworthy?

The intriguing furniture piece has a cuboidal form that supports a sturdy tabletop at one end, which serves as the coffee table section. The rest of the design incorporates slits and nooks designed to store your favorite books and magazines. It features a compact size which is quite space-friendly, and will fit well in different kinds of homes.

What we like

  • Space-saving + compact design that is great for smaller homes
  • Resembles a sausage dog, making it a fun and whimsical design

What we dislike

  • There is no option to change the partition size and make space for larger books

2. Superpop Tables

Coined the Superpop tables, these colorful little tables feature beautiful terrazzo-like surfaces that have been made from recycled plastic. The Superpop tables were created by Paolo Cappello for Miniforms, and they’re the little furniture designs you need to add some vibrancy and color to your home.

Why is it noteworthy?

The coffee tables are quite versatile, and they can be doubled up as stools, or even side tables. They are lightweight, durable, and versatile pieces that are quite sustainable as well. They’re designed to add a splash of fun to your living space!

What we like

  • Feature versatile functionality with a universal appeal

What we dislike

  • The pieces are quite colorful and loud, it could be tough to match them with various interior styles

3. Centenniale Coffee Table

Created by the architect and designer Joanna Laajisto for the Finnish brand Nikari, the Centenniale coffee table is a sturdy and minimal coffee table built using 100-year-old wood. The simple yet stunning coffee table is designed to showcase the rawness and ruggedness of old timber. It is a no-frills and humble design that heavily focuses on the material used to craft it.

Why is it noteworthy?

The coffee table was designed by embracing the cracks and imperfections of the old timber. The entire coffee table was constructed from a single piece of wood, and it features a sharp-edged and elongated tabletop that is supported by blocky and chonky legs with rounded edges.

What we like

  • The table beautifully showcases the versatile textures and variations in the old timber

What we dislike

  • Aesthetics are a tad bit simple and unassuming and could have been exaggerated a bit more

4. Whisk Coffee Table

Named the Whisk Coffee Table, this unique-looking coffee table by Deniz Aktay is created by arranging a metal tube in an artistic and intriguing form. This metal tube creates the major section of the design and instantly defines it as a total eye-catcher. It is unlike other typical coffee tables we have seen on the market owing to its extraordinary shape.

Why is it noteworthy?

The coffee table is named Whisk because as you look at it closer, the simple and twisted metallic form of the coffee table reminds you of a whisk! But besides looking like a whisk, it also looks like a contorted safety pin, truly lending an eccentric feel to your living space.

What we like

  • Perfectly marries sharp form with metallic excellence

What we dislike

  • Since it is a conceptual design, the tangible product could differ after manufacturing

5. Studio Nuño’s Coffee Table

Designed by Studio Nuño, this coffee table uses a new kind of joinery which reduces the assembly time to just a few minutes! However, this joinery does not hamper the structural strength of the coffee table, nor does it compromise its ability to bear the weight of everyday use. The end result is a unique coffee table that can be set up with ease while holding all your prized possessions!

Why is it noteworthy?

All you need to do is insert the legs into the slots beneath the tabletop, slide in a supporting piece, and screw that piece using an Allen wrench. The legs are available in three or four pieces for the coffee table, and the side table, so you don’t need to worry about confusing combinations.

What we like

  • The coffee table is made using 100% recycled and biodegradable materials

What we dislike

  • Aesthetics are a bit too simple, and not very noticeable

6. LOOPS

Called LOOPS, this collection of coffee tables is designed to push the boundaries of 3D printing, and in turn build products that are larger than typical 3D-printed objects, but without the need for the extra hardware. The designer utilizes different geometric shapes with organic forms to create the tables, making it seem as if they’re growing before your eyes.

Why is it noteworthy?

The coffee tables are beautiful specimens of 3D printing and sustainable design. The tabletops have been crafted from 100% recycled plastic which is crushed, melted, and molded from used plastic! While the 3D printed bases are derived from a composite material containing cellulose from responsible forestry.

What we like

  • The base and top can be recycled once the table reaches its end of use
  • Pushes the boundaries of 3D printing

What we dislike

  • There are no options for customization it seems

7. R24 Coffee Table & Stool

Paula Valentini married her training and experience in art and urban planning to create the R24 Coffee Table and Stool. She designed the pieces for GANDIABLASCO, and the two-piece set features a sculptural and artistic beauty to it. Through the table and the stool, she wanted to explore textile architecture on a smaller and more manageable scale.

Why is it noteworthy?

“The image of the weightlessness of bodies held in space and the intention to explore structural fabrics became the guiding light of the project. Through R24 I evoke sensations and images like the evanescence of a bailiff’s wing. It is a useful object and it is also a work in space,” said Valentini.

What we like

  • Lightweight furniture pieces that are durable and resistant

What we dislike

  • The aesthetics are a bit raw and rugged, and may not be preferred by everyone

8. Wormhole Coffee Table

Designed by Olivier Gomis, this mind-boggling coffee table is his effort to transform the hypothetical wormhole into a physical manifestation. Wormholes are supposed to connect two disparate points in spacetime via a tunnel, and this coffee table is what a wormhole would look like if it ever became tangible!

Why is it noteworthy?

The table looks like a wooden plank that has been bent, allowing both ends to be placed on top of each other. They are joined together by a double cone and then glued together with sheets of maple veneer, which look like faint light lines that seem to form the grid.

What we like

  • The center of the hole features a lamp, which gives the table a rather creepy appearance in the dark

What we dislike

  • Since it has a downward curve, the objects could roll inside

9. Orbit Coffee Table

The Orbit Coffee Table is really an interesting one. It includes interloping and multicolored legs, and it is inspired by the orbits you find in outer space. Think of the images in your school textbooks, the ones involving planets orbiting around the sun, and you’ll realize how similar this furniture design is to them!

Why is it noteworthy?

The Orbit Coffee Table includes a round glass tabletop, which is supported by three oscillating glass tubes. The glass tubes intertwine, forming an interesting visual mesh, and each of them has a different color, creating a vibrant colorful sight!

What we like

  • The coffee table is inspired by orbits found in outer space

What we dislike

  • There isn’t any storage section or space in the table

10. Circus Coffee Table

Named the Circus coffee table, this unique conceptual design is created to bring people together in an interactive, fun, and active manner. The Circus coffee table is pretty tall, and it can even be used as a regular desk if needed! Its tall and unique characteristics set it apart from typical coffee tables on the market.

Why is it noteworthy?

The table’s shapes and materials create an almost chaotic ambiance, much like a circus. It is a wooden table with metallic components which adds some functionality to the table. The table also includes metal bars and doors on opposing sides, to form a fun contrast in terms of design.

What we like

  • The Circus Coffee Table is designed to be the center of attention
  • Can be used as a regular desk as well

What we dislike

  • Some people may not like the unconventionality of the design

The post Top 10 Coffee Tables To Design The Perfect Pinterest-Worthy Living Room first appeared on Yanko Design.

IKEA unveils inflatable chair that "challenges traditional gaming design"

Inflatable chair from Brännboll gaming furniture collection by IKEA

As part of Milan design week, IKEA has launched a collection of gaming furniture designed to subvert the genre’s stereotypical “cyberpunk-y” look.

The Brännboll collection includes 20 pieces of seating, storage and various accessories designed to make at-home gameplay more immersive while blending into the home when not in use.

Inflatable green chair from Brännboll gaming furniture collection
IKEA’s Brännboll gaming collection includes an inflatable chair

Among them is a spill-proof coaster, IKEA‘s first successful attempt at inflatable furniture and a modern version of a rocking chair that moves with the player.

The collection was based on the insight that the number of gamers worldwide reached 3.3 billion in 2023, which according to IKEA makes it “the world’s largest hobby”.

IKEA inflatable chair hanging from a coat hook
The chair can be hung up when not in use

Many of these people are casual gamers, who aren’t served by the highly technical desk setups facilitated by traditional gaming furniture – as seen in IKEA’s first foray into the category in 2021.

“For Brännboll we focused a lot on people who don’t identify themselves with the stereotypes connected to being a gamer,” IKEA product design developer Philip Dilé told Dezeen.

“Gaming furniture has been confined to pretty much one look and also very much focused on desk setups,” he added. “The predominant aesthetic is very dark and sort of cyberpunk-y. It’s very thematic, with strong neon accent colours and RGB lights.”

Girl sitting in the easy chair from the Brännboll gaming furniture collection
The Brännboll easy chair was designed to move with the user

Based on interviews, workshops and home visits with real gamers, the Brännboll collection was designed to be moveable and flexible so gamers can play in different rooms and on different platforms from handheld consoles to VR headsets.

Its visual language “challenges traditional gaming design” and borrows instead from the world of sports.

“We chose a very playful approach,” Dilé said. “Just like athleisure or a good pair of running shoes, we wanted products that can be very performant when you want them to be but also very comfortable when you’re just relaxing and hanging out.”

Arm chair from IKEA gaming collection
Unfolding the seat pillow turns this armchair into a low lounger

The main focus of the collection are several low-slung chairs that can be dragged directly in front of the TV for optimum views, as well as providing additional seating for playing with friends.

This includes a blow-up lounge chair made from sheets of thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU), which IKEA normally uses to make inflatable changing mats for babies.

The brand said it was its first successful inflatable furniture piece, following a failed attempt in the 1990s.

“We really wanted to make something that was lightweight, easy to transport and not filled with a lot of foam for the sake of affordability and recyclability,” Dilé said.

“So we went with air, which also brings with it the benefit that you can inflate or deflate it a little bit depending on your comfort preference.”

Side table with guard rail from Brännboll collection
The Brännboll side table has a guard rail to prevent spillages

Another seating design turns from an armchair into a low lounger by unfolding its seat cushion, while the Brännboll easy chair has a breathable mesh seat that is suspended in a metal frame using flexible straps.

“It’s sort of our novel take on a rocking chair,” Dilé said. “When you’re gaming, it moves with you and you have this added level of immersion. So you can almost lean into the corners if you’re playing a racing game.”

Girl using VR headset on a rug by IKEA
IKEA also designed a rug to help VR gamers keep a sense of their surroundings

Many of the accessories, too, were designed to help players stay engrossed in their game. There is a large coaster fitted with two inner grooves to prevent spillages and a side table with wheels and a guard rail to keep drinks and snacks in place while eyes are glued to the screen.

Similarly, a circular rug helps gamers maintain a sense of space while in virtual reality and prevents them from running into things while blinded by their headset.

Caddy holding gaming equipment
The collection also includes plenty of storage for gaming paraphernalia

Storage is another key component in the collection and ranges from a caddy on wheels to a gaming station disguised as a cupboard and a basket designed to accommodate handheld consoles and paraphernalia such as chargers, headsets, controllers and cartridges.

The felt basket can be unfolded to become a low table, informed by tennis ball buckets whose handles turn into legs so players don’t have to crouch down whenever they serve.

“You can actually have everything at arm’s reach,” Dilé said. “When you unfold those legs, you open the lid and you take out your things, then you’re set up and the game is on.”

Hand holding felt basket from Brännboll gaming furniture collection by IKEA
This storage bucket can be turned into a side table

IKEA is currently previewing Brännboll as part of its 1st exhibition at Milan design week, with the collection set to be released in September 2024.

Other product launches as part of this year’s festival include a bright-range toilet by Samuel Ross that was designed to look “closer to a sculpture” and reissues of plates designed by Italian architect Gio Ponti for Villa Planchart.

The 1st exhibition takes place from 15 to 21 April 2024 as part of Milan design week. See our dedicated Milan guide on Dezeen Events Guide for information about exhibitions, installations and talks taking place throughout the week.

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