Monday, October 18, 2010
Today we’d like to share our thoughts on how design can create meaningful change and effective transformation within the area ‘natural’ design.
As we’re always scouting around for inspiration and ideas to uncover new possibilities for design, we’ve noticed a growing theme of constraint, patterns and cliches within the area of brand design for ‘natural’ goods and services. We need to think beyond the expected.
To get our thinking off the ground, literally, we’d like to talk about the new eco-designed Treehotel that recently launched in Sweden: http://www.treehotel.se. It’s located in Harads, a beautiful village surrounded by forest, water and stillness. There are six uniquely themed rooms located up in the pine trees, each one designed by a different architect.
We like that they have taken something from childhood play and nostalgia and transformed this into a new hotel experience around comfort and sophistication.
Our favorite room is the Mirrorcube (nothing to do with the fact we like mirror balls), because it’s so unexpected. Its outer wall is made of mirrored glass to reflect the surrounding environment, creating a camouflaged refuge. We like that the materials are a different take on ‘natural’ (i.e. not the obvious choice of wood), embracing nature in a different, more innovative way. The focus is on the idea of freedom in nature and the designers were free to express the essence of this magical, enchanted place with interesting materials.
Don’t worry about any bird casualties, as we did initially, a special infrared film is laminated onto the glass so that they’ll see its there. The room is a lightweight aluminium structure, 4x4x4 metre boxes clad in mirrored glass. The interior is constructed from plywood and the windows give a 360 degree view of the surrounding environment. It provides living space for two people: a double bed, bath, a living room and roof terrace and access to the cabin is by a rope bridge. All for around $600.
Their tag line is “feel free in a tree”. We like the idea of that, perhaps we should grab our sketch pads and head off to experience the freedom and creativity for ourselves! Our discoveries constantly remind us of how we should always look beyond for inspiration. Designing with nature can be unexpected and should not be constrained to codes and cliches, no matter whether its a hotel experience or a package design.
As many brands are following a similar ‘natural’ design language (i.e. uncoated rustic paper, hand stamped type, muted colors…), design needs to work harder to find what differentiates on a deeper level, the big idea, and then use interesting graphics, shapes, materials and finishes to express this in the most meaningful way.
We are always looking to demonstrate The Brilliance of Change™ and the Treehouse is a great example of how transformational design thinking can create meaningful and unexpected experiences.
For more information on Monday Collective’s capabilities and how we may be able to inspire you to experience The Brilliance of Change™, click www.mondaycollective.com. Please also look out for our ChangeTalks, we’re sending select invites out this week but if you’d like to hear more please do get in touch with us through firstname.lastname@example.org.