Objects of desire from Dutch Design Week 2014

We travel to the Netherlands at the end of their design week, and select a few of our favourite things.

Of Instruments and Archetypes, by Unfold

No half measures

Gone are the days of incorrect calculations caused by human error. This set of instruments, by Belgian design studio Unfold, is a reminder of what once was, while delivering on what is to be. Made up of calliper, tape measure and protractor, the set allows the user to measure objects and immediately send the calculations to a digital 3D software model. 

Geometry was never this much fun when I was a kid.  

Tea minus kettle 

Why should coffee addicts get all the fun, with your Chemex makers and cupping rituals? As an avid tea drinker, all I want for Christmas is this nifty heating device, sweetly named Miito. The device works as such: fill your cup with water, sit it upon the induction base, and immerse the metal rod into the water. Using induction technology, the rod heats up, boiling the water in your cup. 

Miito emits any need for pesky kettles that need a water level of 50ml from the base before boiling (rather a waste of water, really). And it works with vessels of many shapes and sizes, including your favourite Crown Lynn teapot.

It's sitting in the 'patents pending' stage of development, however it has been shortlisted in the James Dyson Awards – so we're pretty sure it will put to market soon (hint, hint, Santa).

Lit up by nature

We often forget the glories of nature. It takes a rather striking object, such as this Bioluminiscent lamp inspired by the ocean, to remind us of what lies beyond our workdesk – that crazy place known as 'the outdoors'. (I hear it's rather nice at this time of the year.)

The lamp, by Dutch designer Teresa van Dongen, is quite literally alive. It's filled with bioluminescent micro-organisms and artificial seawater, which emit a piercing blue glow when the lamp is pushed, much like the effect given by the species in its natural seawater setting.

It's breathtaking, but there's sadness behind the beauty. A chink in the design means that the microorganisms only live two days before they multiply too much for the tube or run out of nutrients... and die. (!!!) They may be teeny tiny, but it tugs at the heartstrings, nonetheless. Still, the effect is mesmerising.

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