Simplicity doesn’t always spell b-o-r-i-n-g. In fact, the concept of modernism, the design philosophy behind the mid-century furniture pieces that are making a comeback, is based on the idea that the simpler, the plainer, the better, and that beautiful designs are straightforward, efficient and honest (with reference to the material).
Simplicity of form and practical function are the main inspiration of Gus* Design Group, a modern furniture company based in Canada.
“We are inspired by simple forms and honest materials. We use them as the springboard for everything we create. From the simple two-by-four and construction I-Beam, to the useful miter box, we delight in the simplicity of everyday objects. The result is furniture, accent pieces, and accessories that mix the elegant with the industrial. Mirroring the great modernist of yesterday, we strive to combine great design and practical purpose.”
Gus* also supports sustainable practices, being a member of the Sustainable Furnishings Council and a certified company of the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) which ensures that all wood products come from well-managed forest.
I’m a fan of simple and no-nonsense designs. They’re easy to dress up, to dress down, and to pair with a wide variety of styles, much like the little black dress or crisp white button-down shirt in your wardrobe.
Some of my favorites from Gus* are the Atwood Sectional (top photo) with its clean, tailored look,
the Annex Storage with its basic shape and a nice pairing of warm walnut wood with cool stainless steel legs,
the Upcycle Ottoman which uses repurposed fair trade coffee bags,
and the nostalgic School Chair and School Stool which are modern versions of the elementary school chair using bent-ply seat and back.
Gus* Furniture is now available in Manila! And the great news is that they’re having a SALE starting today, July 14, until August 16 (see details in their ad at the righ side bar)!!! This is a good deal for those of you who might be in the process of renovating your home or furnishing a condo.
Visit them at the G/F The Residences at Greenbelt Retail, Esperanza St., Ayala Center, Makati City. They will also have an exhibit on July 16 – 29, 2011 at Greenbelt 5 Exhibit Area (near Superga). For inquiries see contact details below:
Phone: 621-8171, 566-9293
Tags: furniture, modern, objects of design, sale alert!
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I’ve just started clearing off papers and junk that have collected in my bedroom these past few months. And I’m finding it to be very therapeutic – the perfect de-stressor after months of thesis work! As my space gets cleaner, I feel a bit more relaxed.
That’s the thing I noticed when I first walked into the minimalist home we’re featuring today. Everything was so clean, so light and airy that I felt very peaceful and very stress-free inside it.
That’s what the owners wanted their home to be – a calming space where people can breathe. That’s why they did away with any unnecessary decoration. With guidance from their interior designer, Apple Consunji, they opted for clean lines and a simple color palette to create that sense of tranquility. Obviously, the owners of this home don’t have horror vacui.
What makes this home even more like a sanctuary is the presence of lots of natural light. The light bounces off the warm white walls and makes the space even bigger and brighter than it already is.
I especially loved their bathrooms. I could live in these bathrooms! With their sleek surfaces and soft lighting, they blended seamlessly with the overall décor of the home.
Tags: home, interior design, modern, space matters
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Form follows function is like the one of the most popular tenets that many modernist designers try to live by. The idea behind it is to come up with a designed form and a kind of aesthetics that are based on functional needs rather than just products of an artistic expression.
This modern house, designed by Frenjick Quesada and Hisako Hirayama of Design HQ, is a classic example of how form could actually follow function. Owned by a veterinarian who constantly adopts stray cats and dogs from the streets of Metro Manila, the design primarily called for minimalist, low-maintenance, and animal-friendly design features. Apart from the house, there is also an additional requirement for a kennel housing for six dogs and a cattery for 40 cats.
The client wanted a modern minimalist house of clean geometric lines and a basic palette of gray, black and white. Later on, he agreed to add one accent color to the original achromatic scheme. So, the designers added three red vertical elements to provide a splash of color from the entrance of the house (photo above). Apart from being a focal point, the columns actually function as cabinets for the kitchen behind it.
The ground floor areas are laid out in an open plan. Both the dining area and the kitchen face the garden to allow the owners to cook and dine while enjoying the verdant view of the garden, and, at the same time, to keep an eye on the animals outside. With its open plant layout, multiple large window openings, and plain off-white walls, the house receives a generous amount of natural light during the day and is passively cooled through cross ventilation.
The flooring is finished in polished cement with stainless steel strip inlays to keep the ground floor area animal friendly and low maintenance. Aside from the three red columns, the industrial-looking skeletal stairway dividing the living area from the dining area serves as another focal point.
The dining table, like the flooring, is made of a concrete base in polished cement finish plus a clear glass top. It was the client’s idea, initially intended as a way to cut cost. In spite of being a “cheaper alternative”, the unconventional table became one of the most interesting features of the modern house.
Photos by Erik Liongoren courtesy of Design HQ
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Tags: filipino homes, frenjick quesada, hisako hirayama, home, modern, space matters. filipino design
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For our male readers, here’s a modern design for a bachelor’s pad created by Frenjick Quesada and Hisako Hirayama of Design HQ. What makes this condominium space unique is the unexpected Filipino twist added into its design. This space shows how modern design can be both high in style and big in personality. Read on to know more.
This bachelor’s pad features a clean modern design. Although the condominium space is undeniably masculine, elements of warmth and comfort were consciously integrated by reflecting the owner’s personality and interests onto the design.
A dramatic palette of chocolate brown and warm grays renders the space. Complementing textures of wood and leather were contrasted with stainless steel and other metallic accents, creating a cozy environment for relaxing while, at the same time, being a chic space for entertaining friends.
The client is an avid reader and has a wide collection of books. So, instead of storing the books inside closed cabinets, we decided to showcase them as an integral part of the interior design. Different types of built-in open shelves were carefully added throughout the unit to keep the books organized while making them a part of the interesting composition of the interiors.
There were shelves fitted above the windows, together with a customized step ladder, to maximize the space.
In both the entertainment area and the bedroom, there were drawers built under the ledges to further improve the functionality of the space.
An interesting feature of the design is the Filipino bone-and-wood inlay applied throughout the interiors. This detail was made modern by using customized linear patterns inspired by the client’s Arturo Luz painting displayed in the dining wall. The patterns, reminiscent of the art deco style, were applied to drawer faces, the coffee table top and key furniture pieces.
Another unique use of the bone-and-wood inlay is its application as a monogram on select chairs, spelling the client’s initials in Braille. The same approach was used for the main bookshelves, whose decorative wood panels have inlays that spell “books”. A star pattern was also developed for some drawer faces, since the client’s name literally translates into the word “star”.
*photos by Erik Liongoren courtesy of Design HQ
Tags: bachelor's pad, condo living, filipino design, filipino homes, frenjick quesada, hisako hirayama, interior design, modern, modern filipino, spacematters
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