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Citta – “A Winters Tale”

Citta - A Winters Tale , Winter '14
To be fair guys, this is NOT breaking news! Imagery of the most recent Citta range has been doing the rounds online…and rightfully so. “A Winters Tale” is inspired by the beautiful nordic city of Copenhagan, and once again that close knit design team has poured their ideas across everything you could possibly think of or need in your home – offering another cohesive and down right attractive collection!
So I decided to go for a trawl and check out some of my favourites. Many of these are listed “Coming Soon” but hopefully it gives you an ideas of the vast spectrum of goodness!

I visited the Citta HQ a year ago and learnt a litte about how they approach designing each range. You can check it out here.

 

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And this my friends is everyones FIRST look at their new cool little animation inspired by the collection and of course Copenhagan. Enjoy!

A Winter’s Tale – Inspired by the city of Copenhagen from cittadesign on Vimeo.

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Citta Design – Auckland

Citta Design - photography by Julia Atkinson for Studio HomeIt is highly likely if you are an NZ homewares nut that you will have at least one Citta Design item in your nest. From teatowels to bed linen, ceramics to bags the brand has become iconic for its twice yearly collections inspired by countries and cities of the world.

I have always felt there was an element of mystery surrounding the design and production of larger brands collections. Who designs them ? How do they get their ideas? Who does what? How on earth do they get from the creatives brain into production, catalogues and sold into stores to arrive in our own homes? Well lucky for me I got to pick the brains and snoop around the Citta Design teams HQ and got a handle on this process once and for all.

Citta Design - photography by Julia Atkinson for Studio Home Citta Design - photography by Julia Atkinson for Studio Home Citta Design - photography by Julia Atkinson for Studio Home

It begins with the design team. In this case led by Senior Designer Imogen Tunnicliffe with her two talented Product and Textiles Designers, Carina Brandsma and Amy Tonkin. They settle on a city or country that holds some fascination or has popped to the top in conversation more than once. For instance the collection about to launch is London – inspired at the time by the Olympics and maybe some of that Royal fascination! The team brainstorm, research and work on mood boards to begin developing their direction. Often a lucky designer gets to make a hasty visit to the destination to fuel this process! A colour palette is developed as is an angle/statement to assist them in keeping focus. This might be the development of a muse or a  fictional character that they design to. (Some great examples of this coming up in the London Town campaign!)

Citta Design - photography by Julia Atkinson for Studio HomeCitta Design - photography by Julia Atkinson for Studio Home Citta Design - photography by Julia Atkinson for Studio Home Citta Design - photography by Julia Atkinson for Studio Home

A lengthy process of design/draw/discuss/sample and back again then begins. This is when new products are born as well as existing designs improved to be ready for the fresh patterns and colours of the range. Over this period the design team also meet with the buying team who work in purchasing the extras that will make up the well rounded collection.

Citta Design - photography by Julia Atkinson for Studio Home Citta Design - photography by Julia Atkinson for Studio HomeCitta Design - photography by Julia Atkinson for Studio Home

With samples done, the range ticked off and production underway this is where we see a the Graphic Design team of Emma Buckton and Jess Yang take the reins. Imogen and team  now move back to the beginning of their design process for the next collection, while Emma begins the task of translating their initial vision into the organisation of a campaign photoshoot. With both teams sharing the large open plan studio, this is made easier as all of them are party to the development and “vibe” of the range right from birth. There is a catalogue and a full sales collateral to produce for Marketing and Sales Manager Katrina Glenday to take on and begin sales with her team to both wholesale customers and Citta’s own online and concept stores.

Citta Design - photography by Julia Atkinson for Studio HomeCitta Design - photography by Julia Atkinson for Studio HomeCitta Design - photography by Julia Atkinson for Studio HomeCitta Design - photography by Julia Atkinson for Studio Home

Yes – it takes a family to create lovely items for us to fawn over! But what a great one they are. I had a little sneak peek at the London Town Collection which will be released mid February (YAY!!! watch this space…) and the girls were working on the next one inspired by Greece and a life under the sun.

Thanks SO much for letting me hang out for a while guys! Remember my offer in exchange for a little desk in the corner!

What I learnt from Citta Design:

Building the “right” team that gels, communicates and shares an aesthetic will be the difference between a brand and an AWESOME brand.

 

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Under the Sun

Citta - Greece The new sundrenched range from NZ’s own; Citta Design has now dropped in stores and online. Keeping to their tradition of global inspiration, it was Greece and life “under the sun” which inspired the extensive collection of homewares, furniture, accessories, jewellery and fashion. I’ve just been wafting around my apartment with the sweet summery smells of this fragrance diffuser.
It was super hard to edit down what to share, so I would suggest if you see even just one pattern/product that appeals to you pictured here that there will be a lot more where that came from!

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Posted in fashion, for the home, furniture, new zealand, product design | Tagged | 5 Comments

Urbis Designday 2013

Urbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeOn Saturday afternoon I scooped up 5 of my girlfriends and hooked onto a special transport circuit sweeping around 11 central Auckland stops for the 2013 Urbis Designday. Following on from the sneak peek I got behind the scenes of the prep and set up of the Whitecliffe College of Arts and Design + Hewlett Packard installation, I thought Silo Park was the perfect spot to kick off our adventuring. We weren’t disappointed!

Urbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeUrbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeUrbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeUrbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeUrbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeIt was fantastic to see the completed work spanning across the hard core construction (Daphe’s bridge that got a ton of use) to lighting design, the use of reflection, bubbles and the ability for visitors build their own book. It was such a credit to all the students involved and for HP for again sponsoring an exhibition of creative student work.Urbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeNext we headed to Parnell where there was a hot spot of activity around the cutting edge Geyser Building. Design Assembly had, in my opinion one of the most innovative and interactive installations of the day. They took the “info-graphic phenomenon” and pulled it up into 3D, guiding users on a trail to find what sort of “font” they were (if in fact humans could be fonts). Loved it.

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Successful NZ architecture photographer, Simon Devitt supported by Youmans Capsules had set up a great space with displays combining both their product and large poster sized prints.

Urbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeUrbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeSmiling and rightfully so! I spotted Urbis Designday organiser Zara Tempest in the Urbis HQ…. along with the brand new issue that looked juicy as anything.

Urbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeUrbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeWith a quick trot around the corner we arrived at the collaborative effort of Gather & Hunt and Backhouse. While their space was on a much smaller scale than many of the others they were very engaged with visitors, gave us some fun decision making to do resulting in even more delicious rewards. Another of my favourites of the day.

Urbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeUrbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeUrbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeUrbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeThe collaboration between Spazio Casa and Yvonne Bennetti wasn’t immediately obvious to me – there were some glamorous models stalking around a runway circuit when we arrived and then they went and assumed positions scattered around the double storied showroom. It wasn’t until passing a model in an amazing floor length slinky gown that I realised she was disappearing in the marble tiled background behind her….doh…got it. Every garment had been inspired by tiling that could be found at Spazio Casa. Unfortunately I found the photography a challenge in there, but there was no doubt a lot of consideration had gone in to this one!

Urbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeOne of the largest collabs of the day was the lofty warehouse installation between Mini and design studio Switch. It was fun to explore, witty, bold and paired with some downright delicious sammies for weary design lovers from Cool Food.

Urbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeUrbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeUrbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeUrbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeOn arriving at ECC Furniture and Lighting we initially got tangled up in a dangerous web of lust for furniture that cost more than our cars. But on weaving through the temptation we made it to the second level to see one of the quirkiest and interesting installations of the day. Wellington creatives, Tape Art NZ were kitted out in Astronaut/Ghost Buster kit while creating an enormous mural depicting life on another planet…using tape. It was really impressive!
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This was followed by some very welcome bubbles and wander around the Paterson showroom admiring their offering of luxe shower-heads and baths. Studio Frazerhurst had used lighting to great effect – unfortunately I could wrangle my camera to do it justice…

Urbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeOur second to last stop was BLOC. It took the girls a solid half an hour to rip themselves away from the distractions of Citta, Douglas + Bec, Collected, World Beauty and Pencil Boutique before actually making it to the top floor to see BoConcept and their Styled by You event. They gave visitors the opportunity to style a model and direct a photoshoot – a great dip behind the scenes that most people would never get!
Urbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeUrbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeUrbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeAnd finally, after a couple of bottles of wine in Mt Eden (tired and thirsty!!) we made it to K Road where the Resene and Matter team were just starting to tidy up their street side installation.  While I am sure we can all agree that giant “test pots”  filled with M&M’s are broadly appealing – it was the huge effort of setting up hundreds of “bikes” on a now deserted motorway on-ramp which really caught out attention . Viewed from the elevated position on an over bridge it was bright, graphic and totally unique.Urbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeUrbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeUrbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeUrbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeUrbis Designday 2013 - Studio HomeAnd then we were done! What an terrific day, and thanks to my team (all pictured minus one who had to desert us!) for waiting while I took a million photos!
Urbis Designday 2013 - Studio Home

 

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Londontown Launch

Citta Design - Londontown

Yesterday afternoon I was lucky enough to attend the Media Launch of Citta Design‘s winter range – Londontown. While I had had a few sneak peaks at some products while shooting the design team behind the scenes a few weeks ago, to see the entire range in full was..well…homeware heaven.

The designers also took a fun approach by designing for five distinctly different characters who they imagined to live in modern London. The Eccentric, The Vintage, The English Rose, The Proper Gent and The Sloan. This has meant that while London is the glue in the range, there really is a style in there for everyone.

The range will be in their new Concept Stores, Online and retailers from the beginning of next week. My picks? That lamp below, the Azalea Umbrella and The Heath bedlinen.

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Luke Harwood – New York

Happy-Bones-NYC

By the time the day rolled around to head to Noho and meet with Luke Harwood at his New York coffee spot, I was feeling like a bit of a map reading, subway riding pro. I stomped around the streets of Soho ticking off all the stores I had promised myself I would check out then wandered the couple of blocks north to Bond Street and Happy Bones NYC. I managed to walk past the sandwich board outside twice (duh!) before realising that I needed to walk through a boutique eye-ware store to discover the high ceilings and large, brick clad spot that I was looking for.

Typical of these antipodean endeavours, a talented barista from the homeland was brusquely churning out coffee after coffee. It turns out that Patrick had been making coffees at Luke’s favourite Ponsonby Road café in Auckland and was subsequently head hunted to be part of the stateside adventure. Arriving a little early I had time to take in the space while waiting for Luke. To me it was awesomely “New York-esque”.  Industrial, sparsely furnished and a bit of a local’s hideaway. Both tables had people propped around them locked in conversation or their laptops. Two backlit bookshelves held a wide array of edgy design led magazines and books while a large photographic print of two young Maori boys by kiwi expat photographer; Maya Villiger took pride of place behind the counter.  There was a small selection of delicious looking pastries and baking in the cabinet and Patrick was just a blur buzzing between coffee machine and the tables.

Luke arrived and we took a seat on a low bench at the back of the room.  Totally laid back and friendly as you only hope the kiwis you meet overseas will be, he let me question away.
He is one of the three founding directors of hugely successful NZ fashion label Stolen Girlfriends Club and has put his savvy marketing and branding skills to work with some other prominent kiwi brands.  In 2010 Luke and his wife Gabrielle upgraded city size from Auckland to New York and Gabrielle now has a position many fashion hungry designers would kill for at an internationally renowned magazine. Meanwhile, looking to find a local project while still very much on the clock for Stolen Girlfriends Club, Luke struck up a friendship with (AMAZING) artist Jason Woodside and a concept for a small “hole in the wall” selling top notch coffee was born. Something that Americans as a whole are starved of!

As the process of networking for spaces began, they met the owner of Selima Optique on Bond St. who offered them the under-utilised space behind her shop. This was a giant leap in size from their original idea but the surrounding streets filled with creative agencies and studios put them on the doorstep of likeminded customers.  The space is now very much used as an out of office meeting spot and general bolt hole for the local creative. The size also allowed them to indulge their passion for art based and alternative publications, again adding to the creative vibe of the place.

When I visited Happy Bones NYC was just 1 month old but all I saw were customers strolling in, ordering their coffees and chatting with Patrick as though this had been their coffee haunt for years. This can all be put down to Luke and Jason recognising the needs of their own kind in the midst of a massive city full of choice. All Kiwis and Aussies adventuring in NYC should be reassured that their flat white withdrawal doesn’t need to be so brutal with Happy Bones now open.

LUKE + NYC 101

Lives : Noho, Manhattan with wife Gabrielle

What he loves the most about NYC:
- the business opportunities
- people are so receptive and positive to new ideas
- the food!

What he miss’s most about NZ:
-surfing
-ease of being in own country
-countryside

Favourite NYC haunts:
- Army surplus stores
- Vintage stores
Takahachi, East Village
- Taking the train upstate to Maine and the Catskills

 

What I learnt from Luke:
Keep it simple and focus on quality. Create something that you love and like-minded customers will follow.

 

 Pay them a visit – they got the GOODNESS!
endemicworld
Citta Design
Triumph & Disaster

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