News flash! The World Design Rankings have been announced for 2020. Who do you think topped the list? Where did your country come? What are World Design Rankings? WDR ranks all the countries based on the number of designers that have been granted an A’ Design Award. This year China beat the United States to the top spot among among the 108 represented countries, followed by Japan, Italy, Hong Kong, Great Britain, Taiwan, Germany, Turkey and Australia rounding out the top 10. You can check out the complete list here and when you’re there you can even zoom into a country level, click on the country name in the rankings table and you will be able to see top designers from that country. Best designers in that country will be displayed first.
The ultimate aim of the World Design Rankings is to contribute to global design culture through advocating and highlighting good design. The rankings provide a snapshot of the state-of-art and design potentials of countries worldwide by highlighting their creative strengths, design weaknesses and available opportunities. The “Design Business Insights” section provides a ranking of countries based on their success in diverse design fields and creative categories. Using the “Design Business Insights” section, media members and design lovers could discover leading countries for specific design sectors and get answers to their questions such as “Which country is best in industrial design”, “Which country is best in interior design?”, “Which country is the best in fashion design?” etc.
With the best of the best showcased in hundreds of design fields and categories the Design Classifications allow you to choose the top ranking designers, artists and architects for your next project be it in architecture, interior design, furniture design, fashion design, graphics design and packaging design and more.
For several years Desire to Inspire has partnered with the A’ Design Award & Competition, the world’s largest annual juried design competition that honors the best designers, architects, and design oriented companies worldwide to provide them publicity, fame and recognition. Such an exciting competition. Such a prestigious award. Here are some of my favourite winners from 2019-2020.
Believe you’ve got what it takes to take on the best of the best design from around the world? You can register for the 2019-2020 A’ Design Award and Competition here but time is short so get your entries in now.
This post is in collaboration with A’ Design Award & Competition
While the world went through a period of political and social upheaval, every aspect of the status quo in Italy was about to undergo revision. Chairs were no exception to this change, either. Pierre Restany, an art critic, spoke about it at length in an essay that was published in 1986 in “Zanotta: Design For Passion.” He noted that people simply didn’t return from protest meetings or assemblies to sit in the rigid Louis XIV armchair, which was the fashion then.
Instead, the bourgeoisie stiff seating was switched out for ergonomics. The movement is now known as the Italian Radical Design, and three thinkers became prominent. They are Cesare Paolini, Piero Gatti, and Franco Teodoro. Together, these minds came up with the concept of a chair that could adapt to various situations by taking different shapes.
And thus, the bean bag was born. A list of the best bean bags available today has been published by Architecture Lab right here, but for now, here’s how the bean bag came to be designed.
Materials for the Bean Bag
Much like a pile of snow, or even water, these chairs could take different physical structures depending on the body of the person sitting on them.
Other Italians were thinking along similar lines but didn’t find much success. Gatti remembered in a 1988 interview that the first attempt was with water mattresses, but that turned out to be too hard. Then, there were inflatables called ‘pneus,’ which is French for tires. There too, the air led to rigidity and reduced comfort. The polyurethane foam followed, but it did not quite respond to the human body as one would expect.
Finally, the designers thought back to the old mattresses with chestnut leaves; something peasants used widely. Basically, a sack is filled with leaves and other such materials, so it takes the shape of the body. In this case, the reasoning was that balls or marbles, basically something spherical and small, could behave like a semi-fluid and mold itself to the shape of the body.
Although buckshots were considered, the lead turned out to be too heavy while the ping-pong balls happened to be too expensive. Finally, they hit on a usable material, foam polystyrene, which is used in heat and sound-proofing. Cutting open the envelope and pouring the balls into a vinyl bag was the first step in the right direction.
They were definitely getting close when it came to the design, but the bean bags hadn’t yet made their impact on the world.
Bean Bags Enter the Market
This only happened after Macy’s took an interest and the American store placed an order. Zanotta became the manufacturer they turned to for producing the bean bags. The real challenge was never coming up with the chair, but rather finding someone to manufacture it. Luckily, the stars were aligned when it came to Zanotta.
Marta Zanotta, the communication and marketing manager of the brand, recalls how it went down. Aurelio Zanotta heard the presentation, and within thirty minutes, he had ten prototypes made. His niece recognized how Aurelio was aware of the potential of the bean bag.
Combining his trademark audacity and far-sightedness, which always helped his business, Aurelio introduced the market to a product that was so out of the box that it became a design icon beyond disputes.
Bean Bags as Icons
As they say, the rest is history. After the order was shipped out to Macy’s, it also made its debut at the Paris Furniture Fair in January 1969. The grand event witnessed the Sacco, or the bean bag, as most of us know it, as an absolute icon of flawless design.
Since then, bean bags have popped up everywhere. You can see it in casual settings like a college dorm room and at places where fashion is carefully upheld. For example, Franca Sozzani, the late Italian Vogue editor, kept a bean bag in her Paris apartment, and it was covered in mink.
Now that it has been over fifty years, the bean bag feels more relevant than ever. In fact, fashion designer Raf Simons ensured that a suite of them was swathed in his fabrics when it came to Kvadrat. Zanotta even made waves in 2018 by opening its first US flagship store in Miami’s Design District. Obviously, it became a splendid affair, attracting people from the worlds of design and art to the Art Basel Miami Beach.
These bean bags cost around $530, which makes it a rather attainable icon, as compared to some other seating arrangements. After all, it becomes a price worth paying if one pays attention to what Restany had to say. The bean bag meets the general need to loosen up how people tend to live.
Not just the bean bag, but its manufacturer too, has had a storied history. From being merely a design to being conceptualized as an icon when it comes to seating arrangements, it has been a terrific journey.
Bean bags have been around for over fifty years now but continue to be just as popular. We hope you’ve enjoyed learning about its origins and the efforts that went into enhancing the ergonomics.
Do feel free to reach out to us and share your experiences of using a bean bag. Till next time, Adios!
There are thousands of different toys on the modern market, and everybody has diverse preferences. Both kids and adults like puzzles, building models, and simply beautiful toys and figurines. UGears is an amazing company that creates toys that combine different categories in one thing. Each kit is a puzzle that you put together like a wooden model. When the work is finished, you will have a gorgeous moving toy. These models are unique, and you will not find anything like them. Living in an era of mass-produced plastic toys, such building kits as those made by UGears become a breath of fresh air.
The company has a useful website with all possible toys in the catalog. They all differ in complexity, shapes and sizes, as well as the approximate time of building. Based on these features, it is easy to choose a toy for anybody from a five-year-old child to an adult experienced in building wooden models. All puzzles have unique designs unlike the majority of popular toys. Here, you will see such special and exciting things as trains, research vessels, a globe, different car models, a curvimeter, or even a butterfly with fluttering wings. The selection here is much more diverse and different from what we are generally used to.
UGears creates an amazing experience for children of all ages, from five to ninety-five. If you want to have some quality time with relatives and close ones or relax by yourself, assembling one of these kits is a perfect solution. Each model has an estimated time of building that varies from 30 minutes to 16 hours. If you are a beginner, the simpler models are recommended. But even experienced model assemblers will find here amazing kits for themselves.
There are also some special models designed for younger kids. They are very simplistic and fun. Besides, these toys can be painted after building. Picking the colors and decorating the models is another fun activity for smaller children.
Here is why the UGears toys are so good:
While being a Ukrainian company, UGears has been growing on the American market as well. To create a well-rounded experience for every client, it is essential to provide both great toys and convenient customer solutions. Here are some of the pros of buying from UGears:
The prestigious A’ Design Award & Competition is ongoing for the 2020-2021 season and with over 100 categories the A’ Design Award & Competition is the worlds’ largest design competition. But it is not just an award. It is an indicator of quality and perfection in design, recognized worldwide, your design front and centre before design companies and professionals. Entries will be judged by an international jury panel of scholars, professionals and media members and the benefits to the winners are inspiring. The trophy, of course, an invitation to the gala night, a certificate of quality, inclusion in the prestigious A’ Design Award & Competition exhibition and the yearly ResultBook but even more importantly press, PR, introduction to industry professionals and companies and international exposure. There is still time to get entries in. You can register here.
Today I thought I would share some of the top winners in the Furniture, Decorative Items and Homeware Design category (one of MANY categories that are included).
A’ Design Award & Competition is organized and awarded annually and internationally in a wide range of categories not just Furniture, Decorative Items and Homeware Design but you know how much we love a great piece of furniture here on Desire to Inspire. You can see all the other winners here and if you’d like to register for 2020-2021 you can still do so here.
This post is brought to you in collaboration with A’ Design Award & Competition.
Time is short. Have you entered the prestigious A’ Design Award and Competition yet? Once again we are sharing some of our favourites from previous years’ winners and more importantly how you can enter your own designs. With over 100 categories the A’ Design Award and Competition is the world’s largest design competition. But it is not just an award. It is an indicator of quality and perfection in design, recognized worldwide, your design front and centre before design companies and professionals. Entries will be judged by an international jury panel of scholars, professionals and media members (you can check out the methodology here) and the benefits to the winners are inspiring. The trophy, of course, an invitation to the gala night, a certificate of quality, free sales listing at SaloneDelDesigner, inclusion in the prestigious A’ Design Award and Competition exhibition and World Design Rankings and the yearly ResultBook but even more importantly press, PR, introduction to industry professionals and companies and international exposure.
From the Good Industrial Design Award, to the Good Architecture Design Award. The Good Product Design Award to the Good Communication Design Award. The Good Service Design Award to the Good Fashion Design Award and so many more. Excited? Inspired? Ready to take on the best of the best design from around the world? The deadline for early submission is September 30 (yes that soon!) and results will be published on April 15. Of course we will be bringing you the results as well. You can find out exactly what the A’ Design Award and Competition is here and register here. Now on to some past winners…