The Stockholm Furniture Fair is the highlight of February. Scandinavia's most exciting furniture brands all come armed with their latest and greatest. Yet every year, I head straight to the Greenhouse. The Greenhouse is a special section of the fair that's given over to new designers, independent designers, and design schools. Here, fresh talent gets a fleeting but very high profile opportunity to make a lasting impression. Usually they don't disappoint.
This year 36 independent designers and 38 design schools exhibited. These were some of my favorites
1 - Originally from Japan, Haruka Furuyama found inspiration in a small house at Carl Malmsten's Capellagården School where he studied cabinetmaking & furniture design. He describes his lilla ateljen range of furniture as comfortable, cozy, simple, bright, and inspiring. Photo copyright © Haruka Furuyama Design & Craft.
2a + 2b - Jun Furukawa, based in Gothenburg, aims to "inspire joy in our daily lives" through designs such as his colorful Flower stools (2a) and endlessly configurable Tray+ table (2b). On his table, stackable wooden trays can be moved around freely on an adjustable extending frame. Table+ photo copyright © Jun Furukawa.
3 - Ok, so maybe you've seen shelves in shapes before. But this deer shaped shelf left a particularly striking geometric impression. Sisters Cilla and Bette Eklund of BEdesign create designs firmly rooted in their Finnish homeland. Pictured is Bette Eklund.
4 - Desktop detail from Fredrik Andersson's AU 79 desk. This piece was made from the recycled cross sections of old skateboards, and was featured in the "Is this it?" collection from Beckmans College of Design, Stockholm.
5 - Oyyo is a Stockholm design studio founded in 2011 Lina Zedig and Marcus Åhrén. Their bold patterned dhurrie rugs are handwoven by a community of craftspeople in India.
6 - I loved Marianne Andersen's In Theory pendant lamps made of blown glass with a pine wood center. A perfect blend of modern and rustic, delicate and strong. They were featured in the "State of Things" exhibition of Norwegian designers. Photo courtesy Marianne Andersen.
7 - Malmö based STOFT design collective "wants to add poetry into our daily lives". They succeed with their mechanical thoughts cabinet in which the mechanical locking device is embellished with cogs and other fascinating moving bits, and put on display. It makes visible that which is otherwise taken for granted. Photos courtesy of STOFT.
8 - Viktoria Henriksen's lovely loopy wobbly FRØ vases were part of the exhibit from Oslo and Akershus University. Pictured with designer Viktoria Henriksen herself.
9 - Alexandra Raraben spins handwoven perfection in her appropriately named Intricate lamp. Visit her site to see the wonderful pattern it creates on the wall (one of my favorite things about lamps, so often overlooked) and sketches. Alexandra, you thought of everything.
10 - Lisa Hilland is a graduate of Central St Martin's in London and now has her own design studio in Sweden. Her Petit Pois chair in conjunction with Snickarakademin Kristianstad in ash wood with brass details is simply the most beautiful folding chair I've ever seen. Not surprisingly, she was named "Designer of the Year" 2013 by Plaza Magazine. Her whole collection is gorgeous. Photographer: Niklas Lundström