Dense: Power of Colour

By Angelina Puschkarski

Iittala- Alfredo Häberli

Iittala is launching a new red glass coulour, Cranberry, in autumn 2014. The bright red shade is inspired by the delicate shade of the Nordic cranberry.

The cranberry colour is intensively sensitive as the arctic berry, which gets its transparent surface with the help of the cold, sub-zero nights. The name of the colour also reflects the character of the glass as organic material, which sometimes behaves and reacts according to its own inherent rules.


1 Why firstly do you work so extensively with colour, from you signature Pantone collections to your new glass collection

We all live in colour from the moment we first open our eyes.
Myself & Victoria also quite simply love colour, and as designers always have done.

Colour for me is the oxygen in the room.
Working these past 7 years with PANTONE on a variety of creative products has naturally influenced
our other product ranges to the point where we are now, on the cusp of focusing all our colour experience into
our new consumer website launching in about a month called

As designers we have to visualise colour constantly on all the products we make-it is like a 4th dimension.
Beyond thinking in 3D-the colour adds another, critical level to any product.
The red of the valentine Olivetti 60’s typewriter is as synonymous of that product as its actual design-
the EAMES Hang It All-coat rack-if the balls were not the pop art-chemical colours so carefully chosen would it
have captured such imagination if they had all been black? Probably not.

Colour is simply everywhere and it is an important part for our DNA somehow too as the human-animals that we are-
so many associations with nature and the world in which we live, both natural and artificial.


2 How does colour work well in a home and why (we are not talking magnolia blush mocha cream etc here!!!)

Colour works well in the home as accessories and accents-it is much easier to take risks and buy smaller, colourful home accents (and then change your mind if you decide that you don’t like them!) with smaller scale items.
Mugs are an easy and obvious way to add a slice of colour to a shelf; a row of tonal PANTONE mugs in a kitchen can transform and add tones.
Especially as is often the kitchen has been created as a largely neutral space; ideal to then display mugs, colourful trays & placemats.

It is easy to forget that when we talk ‘colour’- we are talking here about a huge spectrum of availability here.
Everything in your home does not have to be in bright, primary colour-there are soft chalky whites and greys, minty, light aqua tones and
pale pastels-colour is a broad church.
Paint, I would say is the other colour game-changer. Don’t be afraid-its only paint (you can always paint it back again…!)
Painting 1 wall, internal window frames or even the floor-can transform a room in a way that is much easier to live with and
change than furniture and other big-ticket interior items which you have to then live with for a long time.
1 tin of paint-it is essentially a tin of change.
Colour doesn’t come any cheaper or simpler than that.

Salone del Mobile 2014, Gruppo Euromobil

3 Which are you favourites and why, do you have different colours for different moods?
I think we are most certainly ‘moody’ when it comes to colour. I certainly do prefer a sunny egg-yolky colour mug for my morning cup of tea and a darker, wintery-berry tone for an after-dinner coffee; I realise this will make me sound like an obsessed colour geek, but that is in fact true…

I am very partial to a soft, smokey grey in generally though-partly because there are so many beautiful greys;
from the dark steely tones to the soft, pinky-pigeon colours, and also because we have a blue-grey whippet
who is the most amazing metallic, cool grey on the Pantone chart.
I think our whippet in her greyness has actually silently art-directed the entire decor of our downstairs living room.

“The 15 current Cubit colors are high saturation colors, which are based on the spectral colors as they are seen in the rainbow.  There are also mixtures – especially in the areas of blue and violet – which, also in high saturation, complement the Cubit color spectrum.  The high luminosity and intensity of the Cubit shelf colors invite the user to set definite accents and thereby deliberately create certain moods in the living environment.  In combination, the Cubit colors are perfectly matched. Timeless beauty – just as perceived in a rainbow.” from Cubit.

Oikos: Vicky Syriopoulou- colour and surface designer.

Oikos are celebrating their 30th anniversary at London Design Festival 2014 with a presentation of their  full collection of colours and finishes including their latest decorative solutions at B&B Italia showroom. They have a permanent space on the 2nd floor of the B&B Italia Brompton Road store with a display of their finishes grouped according to their visual, chromatic and textural presence.

Q: Why firstly do you work so extensively with colour

A: Colour is radiation. It is life and energy, and influences people even if they don’t realise it. The more we learn about colour, the more we can use it in our lives, to turn them positive. Colour therapy is known and used since the Egyptian ages. Today, designers and colour experts are pushed even further to achieve high levels of colour knowledge in order to communicate feelings and emotions, through their products, giving them an added value.
Oikos’ main goal, now and in previous years, is to combine colour with texture, in order to reinforce its effect and the overall perception. Sometimes, a colour gives a complete different feeling if used as a flat cover or if textured. In nature there are millions of colours. All living beings, not only plants but also animals, use colours to communicate with their environment. Observing the wide range of existing colour, one of our goal is to recreate them, and to produce new nuances of colours too, using our sustainable materials.

Q: Which are you favourites and why, do you have different colours for different moods

A: Choose a favourite colour always seem to be an instinct , but it’s not. It has quite a lot to do with our culture, the geographical area where we were born and grown up, our personal experiences and our character. It is a contextual choice. In every colour we choose there is a piece of our story, an explanation of who we are. Also the historical moment we live in influences our preferences in terms of colours.
In the architectural history of a place, a colour linked to tradition is chosen and preserved by experience. It’s mainly connected both to cultural and practical/environmental factors (i.e. the availability of the materials in the place, the interaction with the sunshine and so on). A good example is the red roofs of Rome, common since Imperial times, made of baked clay. Another example are the houses and monuments of the Mediterranean areas, characterised by the yellow light of tuff bricks or the white of lime. Light colours absorb sunlight and heat much less that dark ones, keeping the interiors fresh and cool.
When we leave in an difficult situation we try to be surrounded by colours which make us feel calm and safe, colours connected somehow with our past and our history.

Meet Oikos at LDF 2014
When: From 13-21 Sept 2014
Where: B&B Italia 250 Brompton Rd, London SW3 2AS. Visit their site here



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