First Look: 10 Great International Designs

Ambiente 2010

I'm just back from a whirlwind weekend in Frankfurt, Germany, where I attended Ambiente, a huge international design show featuring over 4,500 exhibitors from 93 countries. It was, as you can imagine, an amazing trip - a chance to see and experience designs, trends and products from all over the world that will play a part in shaping the style of our homes in the coming years.

As I was organizing my photos this morning, I started a desktop file called "best" and copied over images of things that I had noted as especially intriguing or beautiful in person. Some are practical, some fanciful, but to my eye, all are worth a longer look.

So, to kick off my posts on Ambiente 2010, I offer a list of those items, in no particular order...

Shown above, first row, left to right:

1. This three tiered tabletop storage and display solution was part of a student project. It is called "Gestapelt" and was designed by students Sandra Bohm and Sabrina Kuhn, who described it as a "different kind of cakestand".

2. New "Vitrini" boxes from Iittala, designed by Anu Penttinen. Beautiful, practical little cachepots, in varying sizes made from glass (both colorful and clear), sometimes combined with wood or metal.

3. Paul Smith's colorful interpretation of the classic 60s Cylinda line by Arne Jacobsen for Stelton.

4. A Fatboy lounge done up in a super shiny stretchy leather (like what was used by Prada a few years ago). A little bit dangerous looking!

5. The acid toned bright interiors and unusual forms of the Maison Sauvage porcelain pieces which were shown in the up and coming designer section of the fair called "Talents".

Shown above, second row, left to right:

6. Chain chandeliers by Willowlamp from the South African pavilion.

7. An unforgettable, dramatic oversized white porcelain screen from the Jean Boggio for Franz collection.

8. Small, ultra luxe china cups in "quilted" black and white with gold interiors from Sieger.

9. A homey bench with warm feet from the Pling Collection.

10. A simple, elegant step ladder designed by Karl Malmvall that is good looking enough to hang on the wall when not in use from Design House Stockholm.

  • More info on Ambiente can be found right here.

    (Images: Janel Laban)