Title: Products, interiors, events, ideas

Pages: 66 - 71


Author: Editorial

Text: Products, interiors, events, ideas
This regular review provides a cross section of interesting items from a variety of sources -and reveals some of the current attitudes which are affecting the world of design. This month, the subjects include instrument housings, a British designed house style for a Dutch supermarket, and a co-ordinated collection of furnishing fabrics.
Strike a light-new style
The Varaflame Comet gas lighter, illustrated here, was recently accepted for Design Index. An elegant and functional piece of equipment with no extraneous detailing, it has various interesting features. Cleaning and flint changing, for instance, have been made easy by the fact that the top slides round to give immediate access to the mechanism. (A spare flint is also neatly accommodated in the area under the top.)
The body of the lighter is of acetyl resin (Delrin), a material chosen for its resistance to impact, abrasion and fatigue. These, and other properties such as low permeability, make it a very suitable choice for this application. The top and bottom of the lighter are chrome plated, and the activating lever is of stainless steel.
The Varal7ame Comet, which has a side squeeze action, is convenient and comfortable to use. It was designed by the research and development division of Ronson Products Ltd (Leatherhead). Available in four colourways, it sells at 1 19s 6d: this is the lowest priced gas lighter that Ronson has ever produced.
Exhibition in the city
An exhibition of work by students of the department of silversmithing, jewellery and allied crafts of Sir John Cass College was held recently at the church of All Hallows, London Wall. The work on show was generally of a high standard and there were some unusual exhibits. The prototype clocks, above, were designed by John Willmin and Ian Haigh who have just completed their course. With John Holbourn, they hope to set up a design group.
The ring, above left, was designed by Stephanie Gilbert, who has just been awarded a travelling grant from the Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths. The ring, Jeff, is the work of Anne Marie Breguet, a Swiss girl studying atthe college for a short period.
British design in Norway
The British Iron and Steel Federation called in Graphics and Industrial Design Ltd to design the federation's stand at the recent British Trade Fair in Oslo. The federation booked an area of 3,150 sq ft. and Bryan Spearpoint produced a comprehensive display, illustrated above, showing products and featuring applications relevant to the Norwegian market. A 32 ton universal beam dominated the stand, giving solidarity to the display, and products and photographs were effectively juxtaposed. A lounge, meeting rooms and offices were accommodated within the stand.
An exhibition of room settings, Britain at Home in Town and Country, was arranged jointly by the ColD and Ideal Home magazine and formed one of the main features of the fair. The room settings included a bedroom, bathroom, living room and kitchen in a country setting, and a dining room, living room and study from a penthouse flat: all were furnished from items in Design Index.
The intermediate centrifuge shown here is the latest model in a range produced by Baird and Tatlock (London) Ltd.
The new centrifuge incorporates a number of valuable features of which the most important is the fact that it has a multipurpose head. Normally with this type of equipment, the head (which is the revolving load carrying unit) has to be changed to accommodate different kinds of load.
As a result of the overall design of the centrifuge, a small degree of uneven loading in the tubes or bottles can be tolerated without excessive vibration, thus allowing the loads to be measured by eye. Since the load can range from four 'off 250 ml' bottles to 168 'off 3 ml' tubes, this can appreciably reduce preparation time.
The speed and time of centrifuging is controlled from the front panel. The operation can be effected manually or automatically.
The centrifuge was designed by C.W.C. Dyson, J. E. Hawkes and M. D. KirkDatrick of BTL
A goddess in a new guise
llmater ('Goddess of the Air'), the Finland Steamship Co's passenger ship on the Baltic run, got her name from one of the mythical figures in Kalevala, Finland's national epic. The interior design of the passenger accommodation was carried out by Jonas Cedercreutz, who worked with the builders from an early stage in the construction of the ship. In co-operation with the Finnish Society of Crafts and Design, he comissioned the weaver, Dora Jung, to design the fitted carpets, curtains and specially dyed tablecloths in the smoking and dining rooms. Lisa-Johansson-Pape designed the light fittings, and some special furniture was developed by Peter von Knorring. The rest of the furniture was chosen from standard ranges. The close co-operation between the various craftsmen and the interior designer produced an effect which is at once harmonious and individualistic. Illustrated here are the cafeteria, right, and one of the ship's saloons, far right.
Putting a good case on it
At the recent Instruments, Electronics and Automation Exhibition at Olympia, T. Foxall and Sons Ltd introduced a range of well designed standard housings intended to give the designer of small batch instruments as wide a choice as possible. Thirteen different types of housings are available in a total of 57 sizes. By combining various trims with split front panels, about 500 variations are possible.
The solid body of the standard housings is of 10 gauge aluminium alloy. Many housings have a wrap round construction for added strength. Ventilation panels are incorporated. Split front panels are available, allowing the designer to group controls and to emphasise the layout by the use of different colours and finishes. Cases handles are supplied in organasol pvc impregnated paint (for robustness again) or hammertone; front panels in gloss, semigloss or hammertone. Trims and handles are frost anodised. The entire range of housings has been designed by H. S. Atherton, one of the firm's directors.
To go with this comprehensive range, an excellent catalogue has been designed and produced by Executive Design Associates.
Belgian prize winner
The Signe d'Or, an award for the best example of Belgian industrial design, was given this year to a picnic chair designed and produced by the Etablissments Erica, Brussels. The international jury, whose members included Friso Kramer (Holland), Gino Valle (Italy) and John Reid (Britain) chose itirom among the products displayed at the Belgian Design Centre. The chair was commended for its lightness, compactness, stability, ease of handling and comfort.
Typographic design
The Society of Typographic Designers recently held their first exhibition of members' work at Monotype House, Fetter Lane, London. A relatively small display, STD 1 showed a selection of sound and respectable work rather than any brilliant achievements or appalling failures. Shown here are, right, a design by Peter Protoof Sainsbury's design department, and an invitation card, far right, designed by R. T. Clark, who teaches typography at the school of vocational studies of Ravensbourne College of Art and Design.
The exhibition was designed by Frank Overton.
Accounts at the double
The Eastern Electricity Board has installed two computers, Honeywell 1800 and 200, to handle the accounts of its two million consumers. The equipment is in a special section, right, of the board's new central accounting office in Ipswich. The architects were Tooley and Foster and the mural, far right, was designed by J. and H. Hutton.
Design for a Dutch supermarket
Albert Heijn, Holland's largest supermarket chain with about 400 stores, recently commissioned Allied Industrial
Designers Ltd to produce a new house style which would effectively project an image of a modern, progressive
organisation. John Harris, who led Allied's team on this project, designed a new symbol for the t company, based on
the letters AH. The symbol is being used on vehicles, stationery, packaging, uniforms, and on the super- markets,
as can be seen in the illustrations, left. The colour scheme uses two shades of blue, and packaging and stationery
have been redesigned. Allied also produced a manual for the firm and this has helped the programme for the
implementation of the new house style to proceed smoothly.
The new look has created great interest in Holland among the public and in the Press. Quite an export triumph for
British graphic skill.
Cornish county hall
Gleaming white and severe, in striking contrast to the lush Cornish country side which it overlooks, the new County Hall in Truro, below, is an impressive sight. It was designed by the architects' department of the council.
The interior design consultant was Planning Unit Ltd. the design group of Interiors International. The firm made various important recommendations which were adopted by the council including micro-filming of records, which resulted in a considerable saving of space. An open plan layout, using glazed inner walls, was also introduced. The council chamber, below right, seats over 120 councillors, and requires | no amplification.
Convenience for the customer
Margo Fabrics has made upholstery fabrics for the furniture industry and for specialist contracts for a number of years. Now the firm has collected 12 upholstery fabrics into a standard range, providing a variety of textures, colours and prices to cover contract application from schools and universities to prestige offices. Approximate retail prices are from 1 4s 9d to 2 15s 9d per yd.
The range, which was designed by F. Goerner, is particularly notable for the scope and the subtlety of the colours offered. All the fabrics are available in pieces or cut lengths from stock, and continuity of supply is guaranteed for several years.
The firm, in fact, has taken great care to make life easy for its clients. The redesigned showroom in Hanover Square, London W1, is excellently laid out with the fabrics so arranged on the walls that each cloth can be seen at a glance in all its colourways. Margo has also produced an excellent folder (A4 size) which contains samples of the whole range. Each sample is accompanied by a full technical specification, and requested cuttings are sent by return of post.
The fabrics illustrated here are Morpeth, shown right, and Alnwick, illustrated far right. The entire range has been accepted for Design Index and a display will be mounted in the Centre:provisionally October 17 Novem ber 26.
sionally October 17 Novem ber 26.



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