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Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Design Trawler's Container Townhouse for the BBC


What happens when a 25 year old with no experience decides to design and build a luxury home using industrial shipping containers? The Isomodal Townhouse is the result of two years design and development for a low cost, ultra efficient, high specification home. Created in part for a new BBC television series which has since been put on hold.

The Isomodal Townhouse draws its influence from shipping containers loaded on to a freighter; its poured concrete ground floor representing a ship's hull with containers loaded on top. The rusty cedar side tower figurative of a container crane and wide circular skylight echoing nautical chimneys.

Container architecture isn't new, however the Isomodal Townhouse is unique in that it represents a high specification build that embraces the industrial forms of intermodal containerisation. Unlike other container projects, the design neither pokes fun at containers as a design gimmick, nor disguises the modular container DNA.


Featuring three full sized bedrooms, separate formal and informal living areas with double height ceiling, gym/cinema, office with concealed entry and 20ft roof terrace, the home has 225m of high specification living space.

Excluding land and design fees, the luxury container home is anticipated to cost £135,000 and take 16 weeks to build. This represents a 40-60% reduction in construction costs for conventional projects of a similar size.

Sartorial Sketches by Jeremy Hackett


How nice of Jeremy Hackett, the founder and Chairman of the iconic British outfitter to send his best wishes. Following DesignTrawler.com's Twitter debut this month, I found out from Mr Hackett's Mr Classic Blog, that 25 of his signed sketches would be generously gifted to anyone polite enough to ask. The drawing by Jeremy Hackett features three well turned out chaps and will be presented to a select number of his clients in Tokyo this September.

Monday, 29 August 2011

If Kevin McCloud did Goldfish Bowls


It's hard to think of a pet more iconic than a goldfish in a simple glass goldfish bowl. I previously mentioned that artifacts, plants and animals lend a powerful 'anti-design' balance to an interior and those 'down' with their feng shui would agree - goldfish symbolise wealth and prosperity in ancient Chinese culture.

While companies such as Biorb have attembeted to bring the humble goldfish bowl up to date (with a not-so-humble price tag), Canadian designer Teddy Luong's Fish Hotel is a home that any prosperous goldfish would approve of. Upscaled with aquarium lighting, black bauhaus cladding and located in the kitchen for super-quick goldfish sashimi.

Sunday, 21 August 2011

Harrods Pot Noodle - The Oligarch of All Snacks


Widely believed to be a spoof when announced in 2008, the Harrods Pot noodle was a limited edition charity design coloration purchased to support Action Against Hunger. The posh 'poulet et champignon' ramen noodles come in a kitsch flocked green and gold leaf cup - colours that are synonymous with the opulent Knightsbridge store.

While the opinion dividing snack was launched as part of the rather more serious Harrods Design Icons series, credit has to be given for the light hearted (yet peculiarly relevant) fun poking of the iconic edition of 100. No other photos exist of the product and it's unknown how many of the, um, 'artworks' have been eaten by drunk students collectors.

Narcissistic Cafetière Demands £5,000 Coffee


This is the Bistro Coffee pot by British designer Nick Munro. Made in the UK, it exudes continental charm and has a fantastic playful charisma - imagine a portly Belgian serving up a strong hot chocolate from a terrace cafe in winter. Its asymmetric ebony handle, quirky cafetière press and defined 18/10 stainless steel body made it an easy favourite.

When it came to photographing it however, its quirks and charms were quickly and mysteriously replaced with a modernist self-assertion bordering on the narcissistic. Short of commanding its own pedestal at the V&A, I felt strangely compelled to replace the Lavazza with some wild Kopi Luwak coffee at £5,000 a kilo... as not to offend it.
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