Highlights from Milan Design Week and Salone Internazionale de Mobile 2018.
Italian design is often synonymous with exceptional aesthetics and quality. So it’s no wonder that over 300,000 visitors flock to Milan for Salone del Mobile and Milan Design week to get first dibs on stylish products that’ll add some pizzazz to their home. We braved the crowd and sussed out the be st
exhibitors. And design buffs, don’t fret if you’ve missed this yearly
trade show and exhibition—just make your way down to the brands’ respective boutiques to claim your
Celebrating the intricate techniques of craft, Spanish luxury fashion house Loewe presented a sprawling collection of blankets, tapestries and tote bags from around the globe. Creative director Jonathan Anderson’s goal was simple: to combine the advanced expertise of the house’s workshops with the work of smaller but equally knowledgeable ateliers specialised in a range of craft forms, regardless of location. Various types of artisanal textile production methods from Europe, Asia, Africa and South America were explored—ribbon handembroidery from India on blankets and totes; items made with the ancient method of boro in a Japanese atelier using highest-grade Japanese fabrics; and also from Japan, an exquisitely hand-painted silk tapestry.
Colour permeated its way into seven beautiful rooms in Museo della Permanente for Hermès’s latest collections of wallpaper, furniture and blankets. The French luxury brand’s co-artistic directors Charlotte Macaux Perelman and Alexis Fabry imagined a show-stopping Moroccan-styled interior with over 150,000 individual tiles from Morocco (walls! floors! ceilings!). Each pavilion housed different elements of the new homeware collection, ranging from vases to trays, rugs and seats. What stood out for us was the Droit Fil, a scarf box made in paprika maple, and the fine tableware with drawings from ‘A Walk in the Garden’ designed by artist Nigel Peake.
The luxury crystal accessory arm of Swarovski roped in highprofile and cutting-edge designers for this biannual capsule. For Salone del Mobile, a new home décor line featuring designers like Nendo, Patricia Urquiola and Peter Pilotto was unveiled. Japanese studio Nendo caught my eye with its Softpond and Tangent collections. The former’s calming Montana Blue solid crystal bowls were inspired by water and nature, with the varying thickness replicating the depth of water like a pond or lake. And true to its name, Tangent consists of candleholders, vases, trays and mirrors featuring newly developed crystal elements placed at a tangent to rectangular metal frames.
A mainstay at Fuori Salone, Louis Vuitton’s Objets Nomades evokes a globetrotter’s way of life with contributions by returning design heavyweights including Marcel Wanders, India Mahdavi and Raw Edges. Joining the LV crew this year is Hong Kong-based architect and designer André Fu with the Ribbon Dance Chair—a two-person conversation chair that reflects a graceful echo of the movements of traditional Asian ribbon dances as seen with the elegant cur ves of the wooden arms.
For a subtle statement, look to the Petits Nomades collection instead, which features a collection of decorative objects like origami flowers, overlay bowls and vases designed by Atelier Oï, Patricia Urquiola and the Campana brothers respectively. A huge article doesn’t necessarily have a memorable impact; allow the detailed craftsmanship to speak for itself instead.