E Floor

Jan 09 - 2020

Sustainable materials and products – masses of them out there apparently, but how do we properly assess exactly how sustainable anything is? There are various schemes, labels and means of accreditation, great variation between and within countries, huge scope for monetising the sustainability industry and the larger the organisation the more obscure the details.

One way of negotiating this minefield is to seek out smaller businesses who produce one or only a few things. For example Foresso who have a single product, a timber terrazzo sheet material made from timber and plaster waste and 0% VOC resin cast onto an 18mm birch plywood substrate. Locally sourced, using 85% recycled material and aiming for 100% asap by developing a resin-free binder, the finished product is inherently durable and can be returned and ground down to start again at the end of its use.

Perhaps because this is a relatively small business, or maybe because they are highly skilled and totally committed, Foresso have clear sight over their whole operation and make all decisions based on environmental consideration.

A beautiful material, with clearly described sustainable credentials.


Foresso timber terrazzo

Dalston kitchen flooring

Azure Mono / British Oak in a pale blue binder

Ivory Duo / British Walnut and Cedar of Lebanon



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Foresso kitchen floor Foresso Ivory Foresso Azure

Seaside Seatrac

Jul 06 - 2019

Solar powered Seatrac consists of cross-beach decking, a transition platform and an elegant track-fixed Marcel Breuer-inspired chair to make getting into and out of the sea possible for anyone who would normally find this a trial.

Great example of something simple, useful, beautiful - there could surely be one on every beach.

The result of a research project at the Applied Mechanics Laboratory, University of Patras, Greece, now manufactured by Tobea which exists to make this and related designs and services commercially available.




Seatrac access Seatrac seaside

Michèle Oberdieck RCA Work in Progress

Jan 25 - 2016

Had an interesting couple of hours at the Haworth Tompkins RCA Dyson Building in Battersea where visitors had (very trusting) free rein to wander the studios and get a bird's eye view of the workshops from glazed galleries – a glimpse into a particular working world. 

Among the exhibitors Michèle Oberdieck showed her glass objects resting on their sides, open-mouthed, cut polished edges, smooth, stretched and pinched-in forms and stand-out use of dazzling yellow, brown and pink: a wake-up combination. Looking forward to the end of year show.

Michèle Oberdieck News

Royal College School of Material Ceramic & Glass



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Michlee Oberdieck Tall Yellow Michele Oberdieck Brown Yellow

London Light

Sep 27 - 2015

Picking through lighting at the London Design Festival, not at all methodically or comprehensively :

Michael Anastassiades occupied the shopfront at Aram with his own range and the Mobile Chandeliers for Flos; something I like about his work is that it's on the one hand utterly special - sculptural and made exquisitely with fine materials - and also completely useable, perhaps because it reminds you of other things? Upscaled jewellery or gorgeous toys. More about MA and a different way of thinking about the sofa here.

Had an interesting chat with Rubn whose products have a slightly mid-mod feel so not surprising to learn they hand-make from a factory in Sweden founded in the 50s. Added to a half a century of design history they have a super-flexible contemporary production set-up which means their neat families of fittings – practical and well-made, spanning glamorous to everyday – can be endlessly adapted and customised.

EOQ showed their Joseph lamps designed by Michael Young and made from solid blocks of alumunium; more on their site on how this is done but suffice to say it's clever and the result is something that almost looks like paper so delicate are the blades. Anodised or finished in metallic colours the fittings have an intriguing glow, marrying industrial with refined, aptly named after Jospeh Bramagh who patented the first extrusion process in 1797 for making lead pipe.

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Micahel Anastassiades lamps Micahel Anastassiades Mobile Chandelier 8 Rubn Vox pendant Rubn Lector lamp EOQ Joseph pendant


Sep 20 - 2013

Lower Marsh behind Waterloo Station is a curious street, undisturbed by twenty-first century development despite its prime location. Fish and chips, second-hand books, massage parlour, tatooing, vintage, primary school, micro-supermarket - something for everyone and now a shopfront for product designer Michael Anastassiades. He seems to be working with the traditions of another era, using fine materials and tapping into a level of craftsmanship that we might have thought no longer existed, nevertheless producing entirely contemporary objects.


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Twentytwelve 02

Aug 06 - 2012

Some other people who might have a view on Olympic publicity are Barber Osgerby who designed the torch, seen all over the country, carried by 8000 torch bearers, unbelievably, not getting as much airplay as the cauldron. Anyway they seem fairly busy working all over the place doing a madly wide variety of things, the designer’s dream life.

TipTon chair for Vitra, the torch manufactured in the UK by the Premier Group in Sheffield, Tab lamp for Flos.

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barberosgerby bo1


Feb 07 - 2012

Io lamp by Matthew Hilton – elegant, un-faddy, energy efficient and practical – sadly no longer in production. The spare shape with precisely separated elements puts material choice to the fore: brushed nickel plated steel arm, cast iron base and crucially a porcelain shade making an ordinary compact fluorescent lamp a thing of beauty. All this for around £100. Should UKPLC be able to match our design talent with the ability to manufacture to this level of finesse, and at an affordable price?

Used in consulting rooms throughout The London Medical Chambers

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