Scandinavian furniture is characterized by sleek, well-made, and minimalist design. The harsh weather conditions and large forestlands have influenced the designers to produce long lasting products that use wood as the main construction medium. The socialist political climate in Sweden has shaped a common design philosophy that everyone has the right to well designed objects no matter the their social class, gender, or race. The minimalist aesthetic is derived from the main idea that tools are meant to serve a function and they do not need any extra frills; the form follows the function. However, this simple furniture aesthetic can still provide what the danish call ‘Hygge’, meaning that cozy and comfortable feeling. I have included recent works that I fancy and brief review on them below. (1)
This is the S1 Sideboard by BYKATO. What I like most about this piece is that the handle is built in as a negative feature at the top of the doors and drawers. This one piece has two functions which is way cool. BYKATO really keeps the user’s needs in mind by provide a fully customizable product where the user can pick the number of doors, color of the doors, and the drawer arrangement. Plus who doesn’t like a nice semi-muted pop color.
This is YOLO by Aalto+Aalto. This Helsinki based design office has designed a product that is meant to provide a service for an user’s entire life. (3) Yes it is a high chair, but you can remove the ‘baby cage’ top part and the product becomes a kitchen ladder or a stool. By providing multiple functions, the product is still useful even after the little tyke can sit in a proper chair. I am 6 ft tall and 22 years old and I would use this all the time, no doubt. And I would like to pass this product along to my next generation if possible.
(1) Caffes, Levi. Scandinavian Furniture Design. 2016.
(2) “S1 Sideboard.” ByKATO. 2011. Web. 24 January 2017.
(3) “YOLO.” Aalto Aalto. 2015. Web. 24 January 2017.