WantedDesign 2019 Launch Pad Lighting Winner: Design Machin

06.05.19 | By
WantedDesign 2019 Launch Pad Lighting Winner: Design Machin
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We were proud to again be a sponsor and lead the jury for WantedDesign’s 2019 Launch Pad alongside EQ3, which was another year filled with incredible designs from designers from around the globe. The 2019 Launch Pad jury included Karen Hong, Buyer for Design Within Reach, Giulio Cappellini, Art Director, Marva Griffin Wilshire, Curator and International Press Director of Salone Satellite, Enri Tielmann, VP of Product Development of EQ3, and Shant Madjarian, Founder & Creative Director of Juniper.

Lighting design winner Alvaro Carrizosa of Design Machin talks to Design Milk about his work, winning this year’s Launch Pad and what’s next:

Tell me more about the heritage / history behind the toy that you based your lamp on and why it was something you wanted to explore?

I’m Mexican and I’m deeply connected to my Mexican roots and culture. I have always admired Mexico’s craftsmanship, tradition, and identity. I draw my inspiration on my experiences traveling through Mexico; its food, colors, shapes, attitudes, etc. My work is an attempt to preserve and reintroduce objects and shapes that are found in my culture that in some instances are becoming obsolete.

The Balero Lamp, is a tribute to the traditional children’s toy cup-and-ball or balero as it’s known in Mexico. The game is played by flipping a wooden barrel tied to a string on to a spike. It was important for me to recreate the exact feeling of joy and excitement when playing with the balero as well as keeping the toy’s form and feel.

Why do you think play, delight and joy are important factors in design?

Having a background in architecture; I think it’s important for the public to engage and interact with objects or space. I believe that through textures, colors, form one can create this brief, but powerful moments of delight and wonder that can impact people with long-lasting experiences and memories.

Who is your ideal customer?

The lamp was designed for kids and late millennials. I want late millennials who now have kids and grew up playing with toy to remembered childhood memories and I want kids through the lamp to connect back to the toy.

What were some of the challenges in creating your product and how did you overcome them?

Well, I think the most challenging part of the lamp was to design the mechanism that activates the lamp. I wanted to replicate that moment of satisfaction, joy, happiness of the toy by turning the lamp “ON”. I want people to engaged with the lamp, just as you would the toy, thus introducing a visible switch or a touch sensor switch was never an option.

Now that you’ve won WantedDesign Launch Pad, what do you plan on doing next?

I want to improve a few minor details of the lamp to improve the experience. Finally, I want to market the lamp in order for people to have access to the lamp. I also want to develop and explore other design ideas that I’ve sketched.

See more of his work at

Jaime Derringer, Founder + Executive Editor of Design Milk, is a Jersey girl living in SoCal. She dreams about funky, artistic jewelry + having enough free time to enjoy some of her favorite things—running, reading, making music, and drawing.