The Alter of Tea

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Tea is an integral part of life for many people. As such, it deserves a sacred space at home where it can be prepared and enjoyed. That’s the idea behind Lotus.

Of course, the set includes an elegant pot and cups for serving, however, it also features an ornate desk dedicated to storing or displaying your tea set. The beautiful lotus flower grill located on the surface of the top serves as a drainage area where you can dispense tea leaves when you’re finished.

As for the ceramics, the pot features 3 interchangeable, artistic toppers that denote the type of tea and are an extension of oriental tea culture. The first is a lotus for healthy, stable mind. The second is pomegranate for fertility and solidarity. The third is heavenly water, considered sacred and pure. Tea leaves can also be stored in the removable handle that doubles as a container. Simply snap off, dispense your desired leaves, place the corresponding topper to steep, and enjoy.

Designers: JuYoung Kim & Chang Choi

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Is Traffic Driving Up the Wall

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Everyone has come to that point when driving that Google Maps has told you that you’re in the middle of a building. It has been a problem for me in the past, but with the Ventooz, I feel it’s going to be a more accurate representation of my position. Designed for Disney’s wall climbing robot, Vertigo, the Ventooz is a scaled up version that is built for some high speed, high altitude wall climbing.

The vehicle features suction cup covered wheels and four powerful fans that can point in any direction and propel the vehicle downwards, enabling it to stick to walls. For anyone who suffers from vertigo, I can assure you; this vehicle will climb a building’s wall so quick you won’t even get a chance to feel ill. As Juan Garcia Mansilla says, “just strap on the 4- point harness and up you go!” I guess that’s easier said than done Juan, but for any of you adrenaline junkies out there, this could be your next challenge.

Designer: Juan Garcia Mansilla

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Should grooming products be ergonomic? Or Sleek?

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Blond’s Extrusion electric shaver may be the very opposite of ergonomic, but it does follow a design movement that we’ve subconsciously made peace with. Phones today have made a rather successful transition from being the curvy, hand-friendly gadgets that Nokia made in the 90s and 00s, to being slabs that have so little design in them, they’re physically and even characteristically two dimensional. However, the human perception has shifted too, and any product that has mass and curves is now perceived as un-sleek and undesirable.

The Extrusion Shaver tries to use that perception to its favor by ditching the design language set by current shavers and their over-stylized-in-the-name-of-ergonomic-design forms for something that’s sleek, and easy on the eyes. The Extrusion Shaver doesn’t look uncomfortable to hold… but it does look clean (which goes hand-in-hand with what it does to your face), and it definitely looks sophisticated (another hand-in-hand characteristic trait). It looks simple but still retains its high-end image rather wonderfully, with its premium looking matte metal finish and its wireless charging dock… but more importantly, it also looks refreshingly different!

Designer: Blond Design Studio

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The hand-axe 2.0

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I’m no lumberer, but the Flexible Axe does seem like common sense to me. Imagine needing to slice a large piece of wood with a traditional axe. Its fixed blade means the axe cuts in exactly the same line as the handle, which means you need to adjust your grip to cut wood comfortably. The Flexible Axe puts the blade on a rotating pivot, allowing you to set an angle on the blade that lets you hold the axe itself in a manner that feels comfortable. Think of it being the lumberer’s equivalent of the FlexiClick drill that allows you to drill at right angles, or get into those tough spots. The Flexible Axe brings innovation to what’s possibly one of the oldest (if not the oldest) implements ever made by man. We’ve seen refinements to the humble axe that has been with us since prehistoric times, but probably nothing quite as revolutionary as this!

The Flexible Axe is a winner of the Red Dot Design Concept Award for the year 2017.

Designers: Huang Nuan-Ting, Li Ke-Jun & Lin Bing-Ta.

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2017’s Top 10 Appliance Designs Are Still Ahead of Their Time!

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Set a designer free and they’ll make products that they would love to own and use. That seems to be the consensus with our Top Appliance Designs post today. While some of them try to just simply mimic the visual styles of other companies (VW, Dyson), other products try to do more than what they’re expected to do or do something a product hasn’t done before. That’s the essence of innovation, now isn’t it?

The products below show how designers are able to hack the frustration of users and consumers worldwide… and use that ability to design products that we’ve never seen before, but more importantly, can’t wait to see it turn into reality!

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Klaus Bischoff – Volkswagen’s Head of Design – describes the brand’s design philosophy in 3 words: “Simple, sophisticated, and different.” Designer Jarim Koo has undoubtedly adopted this philosophy across the ‘Barista Beetle’ coffee machine.

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This Dyson coffee machine concept explores what we might expect from the dominating vacuum brand if they ventured into the world of kitchen appliances.

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Gotta love this twist on the rice cooker! Called the “Haier Multipurpose Cooker”, it takes the versatility of this popular appliance and multiplies it times 3! Instead of one unit for steaming, it features three cooking hubs with containers of different sizes.

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A vacuum sealer feature is integrated directly on the door so you can quickly seal and store unused food. Just place the food item in the bag, place the edge into the slot and it will remove air before sealing it.

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This sewing machine has an e-ink display on the side that guides you through spool loading processes and lets you choose from a large database of stitching styles by showing you graphics that make much more sense on screen than having to open and browse through a user manual every time you use the machine.

Using a heat, steam and an internal pressing machine, Effie irons your clothes for you!

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This minimalist lighting and air purifying pod is capable of being carrying and placed almost anywhere but is specifically designed for use in the kitchen.

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The O-Fan (named aptly) powers itself via MicroUSB and instead of looking like a fan on the end of a USB stick, looks more traditional, with a dash of fresh and quirky.

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It’s called Pop-Up Laundry and it’s a twist on the washing machine that takes inspiration from the toaster. Yes, you heard that right! Simply hang up your dirty shirt and with the push of a button it will lower and the cleaning/pressing process will begin.

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It’s hand-operated and doesn’t require any batteries or electricity, meaning as long as you’ve got hot water, you’ve got fresh espresso!

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The Cozy table exists at the intersection of furniture and appliance, doing double duty as both a side table and indoor air purifier. As an added bonus, the top surface doubles as an induction charger for Android and late model iPhones AND there’s a built-in light.

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This air conditioner stays flush within a wall, almost integrating itself into the building’s architecture like a radiator. It comes with an air outlet running along the top and sides, and a screen at the base that instead of flashing numbers and mnemonic symbols like fans and water droplets, builds context, by visualizing what the AC is doing.

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Sized to fit the most compact of spaces, this steam washer eliminates the need for bulky under-counter washers and even dishwashing liquids.

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This lightweight vacuum adopts an unconventional circular form that’s not only beautiful but functional for navigating smoothly around furniture and other objects. The the glass top interface notifies users when it’s time to empty the collection bin and will even alert when an area has already been vacuumed!

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Herb Garden makes it possible to practice your green thumb on fresh, organic herbs from the comfort of home! About the size of a refrigerator, it features 3 sets of growing chambers, an LED light box, air pump and a fan for atmospheric adjustments.

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Check out YD’s top 10 car designs of 2017.

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Check out YD’s top 10 medical designs of 2017.