Milan 2014: SaloneSatellite

The SaloneSatellite was launched in 1998 to bring together the most promising new designers from all over the world and immediately became an incubator of young creative talent. Many of the pieces presented as prototypes in previous years have gone into production, and many of the young designers have gone onto become leading figures in the industry. It’s my favorite part of the fair, and always a great place to spot rising stars.


Circle Meets Square, by Polish-born, Hamburg-based designer Olga Bielawska, is inspired by the dynamism in geometric forms that enables the table top to appear to float, and designed to be stackable and easy to manufacture.


Y6 is a collection based on the idea of wrapping pieces of wood with metal, using a clamping technique to fix them in place with a minimal design. It’s the brainchild of Cairo-based design studio yellow. “We love to experiment with different materials and various manufacturing techniques around us; anything that triggers our minds,” say the designers.


The Tube Vase by Kenji Fukushima is made from malleable tin, so each one can be shaped and altered by hand to create something bespoke for the user. Tin is also said to have antibacterial properties, meaning that flowers will last longer.


Porte Bagages by Lise El Sayed are rosewood and knitted wool nets designed as shelves where the storage space is determined by the weight and volume of the things being stored.


Tula Blomma was designed by Swedish Ninja, aka Maria Gustavsson. She says, “For my 5 year old daughter; you are a true epicurean! Life is a big adventure and I believe you will make sure you enjoy it.”


Trifula chair by Italian designer Eugenia Minerva is named after a word from the ancient, Greek-influenced dialect of Southern Apulia, “trifulo,” which means “rush”. This common seaside plant’s stems have been tangled together by the hands of skilled artisans to form dense fish traps for generations. “Trifula is a tribute to ancient traditions that are disappearing as well as to the use of natural materials, such as the rush, which create incredible embroideries with their durability and flexibility,” says the designer.


The Phytophiler by Italian design studio Dossofiorito is “a series of hand-thrown terracotta pots on which functional appendices are installed, suggesting possible gestures and daily care for the plants that inhabit our living spaces” – embracing the return of the house plant and my favorite find at SaloneSatellite.


The Ply collection by Christoph Friedrich Wagner includes these beautifully understated lamps, available in three sizes, various designs, and with cable in various colors. They stand alone, but look great in a group, the plywood softens the light perfectly.


These brass and reclaimed leather Candlestix can be stacked and played with when not busy holding candles – designed by Ariane van Dievoet, the designer behind Avandi.


Dune is inspired by the softness of windblown sand. Its quilted texture is intended to bring the characteristics of upholstery to the floor, creating a rug that can be walked over, but is also perfect for sitting or lying on. Designed by Hanna Emelie Ernsting and Sarah Böttger.


Endlessly curious Norwegian design duo Vera & Kyte were launching their new collection, including the Apparel wardrobe and room divider.


I loved the versatile Pino Pino vases by Maija Puoskari, masterminded to solve the problem of never having the right vase for the flowers you receive. The vases stack to enable you to adapt the colors and the size, and the addition of a wooden lid turns them into a handy container when not in use.


Katie Treggiden is a purpose-driven journalist, author and, podcaster championing a circular approach to design – because Planet Earth needs better stories. She is also the founder and director of Making Design Circular, a program and membership community for designer-makers who want to join the circular economy. With 20 years' experience in the creative industries, she regularly contributes to publications such as The Guardian, Crafts Magazine and Monocle24 – as well as being Editor at Large for Design Milk. She is currently exploring the question ‘can craft save the world?’ through an emerging body of work that includes her fifth book, Wasted: When Trash Becomes Treasure (Ludion, 2020), and a podcast, Circular with Katie Treggiden.