TalentLAB is MADE.COM's crowdsourcing platform. It gives unsung talent the opportunity to take their first steps into the design industry. It's a place to discover and support new talent, and find unique products that you won't get anywhere else.
For our fifth TalentLAB collection, we've curated products around the theme of nature and wellbeing. The result? Fresh, innovative pieces made with natural materials, that'll make you feel zen and calm in your surroundings.
Want to know more? Take a look at the creative process behind some of the pieces, and find out what inspired six of our designers.
"My design is inspired by an oriel: the architectural term for a bowed window on a facade. I'm also inspired by urbanism in Paris. At the beginning, Oriel had a totally different design – it was standing on a pedestal. But to save space, I decided to make it wall-hung."
"I sometimes design objects that are made purely to be beautiful, because living in a space where you feel good, surrounded by pieces that you love, is really important. But [with Oriel], I wanted to create an object that was as beautiful as it was useful; something that would benefit people's daily routine."
"Japan was the starting point for this project. Like some Japanese furniture, [the Quiet chair] is minimal. The idea was present for several months, but between the first sketch and the finalised proposal, it took around four months to complete. A sketch is the basis of the work; often the process of drawing allows you to find other ideas."
"Nowadays we're flooded with images on the street, on the internet... creating a rather aggressive universe. Your house is your refuge. Finding yourself at home surrounded by clean-lined furniture and objects allows you to feel a sense of quiet and calm."
"My creations can take anywhere from a few weeks to a few months to design, but the initial idea for Frequency carried so much weight and realism that everything fell into place really quickly. Playful, functional and family-friendly, it's inspired by a frequency curve: a graphic used to illustrate the human heartbeat rate."
"I wanted to create an inclusive design – a piece that could cater to all different kinds of people, of all ages and heights. I'm a strong believer that there should be equal consideration and harmony between both function and form. When designs start to pull strongly towards one of these directions, the other can be inadvertently affected."
"When designing, I always start with free sketches in 2D. After a few sketches, I focus on the lines and forms that interest and inspire me. The DELTA project took two long months to go from a simple 2D sketch, to a 3D design. It then took me three weeks in the workshop to build a prototype."
"[DELTA] is inspired by minimalism and geometry, and the technical challenge of making the shape feel solid and stable. Design for me must always combine intelligence and aesthetics. Natural and recyclable materials are my favourite to work with; wood and metal being the two I use in all of my projects."
"I came up with the concept [for Potos] one morning after doing some sketches. I dream up so many ideas every day, and sometimes take a few minutes to draw those ideas. To create Potos, I sketched some different shapes before finding the right combination."
"I was inspired by the world of childhood, so wood seemed appropriate because it's reminiscent of retro toys. It's also a living material: it's a plant, it's life ... Just like these little statuettes that give life to your home. I like to imagine that these figures will bring a funny and friendly presence to people's interiors. I want to brighten up daily life with joyful objects."
"For me, a good idea for a design begins with a sudden lucid image in my mind. I immediately start to sketch it before it slips away. Images, quotes, visual arts… they all add up to a new idea. I like to strike a balance between form, function and beauty, colours and materials, and modernity and timelessness."
"Coming from an architectural background, I believe that a good design lasts a long time and gives you the freedom to grow with it over the years. Hive is inspired by nature – it's informed by the structure of a beehive. It can be used as a library for books, or as a dividing screen between spaces."