Japanese design has always been an inspirational source within interiors but it’s the uncomplicated style that highlights traditional craft, natural materials and solutions to everyday life that is starting to make waves in the mainstream. As well as inspiring ideas for lighting, ceramics and utility pieces, brands are featuring and collaborating with Japanese designers.
Forward thinking: Marks & Spencer picked up on this trend for summer, focusing on wood finishes, simple silhouettes and hand-painted ceramics
The Japanese design philosophy is a way of life; it’s the pared back and uncomplicated forms, also mirrored in Scandinavian style, that has had such a big influence in emerging trends over the last few years.
An obvious place to start and a familiar highstreet brand is Muji. The basic packaging design, works with the idea of ‘su’ meaning plain or unadorned but the luxury comes in the visual simplicity. You just have to take a look at their stationary to see it in action.
A few favourite finds by Japanese designers & influenced by the style:
1. Uka stripe cup, £6.95, Nkuku; 2. Double oven glove, £28, The Organic Company range, Liv; 3. Brass trivet, £65, Oji Masanori range, Native & Co; 4. Koichi bowl, £19, Toast; 5. Flow chair, Tomoko Azumi range, Ercol; 6. Plisse lampshade, £30, Habitat.
John Lewis’ AW15 trend report highlights the timeless appeal of functionality, simplicity and quality inspiring furniture makers like Another Country, all key features of Japanese style. For A/W 2015 Ercol have collaborated with Tomoko Azumi to create the Flow chair, launching in September (see above).
At Pulse design show earlier this year we spotted Danish textile brand The Organic Company, their 100% organic cotton kitchen, bedroom and bathroom textiles reflect that uncomplicated, practical but beautiful design ethic. Their latest release is The Cloth, which is based on traditional Japanese wrapping cloth, which can made into a re-usable bag, a tea towel, table cloth, to wrap presents…the list goes on.
Design utility-ware shops Objects of Use and Native & Co stock a plethora of Japanese utility pieces, including Japanese designer Oji Masanori’s brass accessories (see favourite finds above). British- Japanese ceramic designer Reiko Kaneko combines the influence of her early years growing up in Japan within the forms of her tableware (see below).
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