Solar energy is gaining some well-earned attention lately, especially in the world of design. These sun parasols seen at Milan Design Week 2012 were randomly placed in the city, in order to provide shade and recharge the devices of resting visitors. Entitled Eclipse and Kosmos, the two parasols designs presented by Ombrellone Solare and developed with the help of recycled materials, harness the power from the sun with the help of a thin, lightweight film made of Organic Photovoltaics. The energy is further stored in an adaptable charger, which can be used for various purposes, such as charging laptops or phones.
Here is more information from the developers: “Eclipse, created in collaboration with Umbrosa, is a simple yet beautiful design for a parasol, doing away with the classic huge umbrellas. It consists of a big, sophisticated ring, which holds a shade sail that is tightened inside and is majestically silhouetted against the sky. Kosmos, equally beautiful, was developed with Extremis, and focuses more functionality and careful consideration for each and every aspect of the product. It also integrates an LED light which is powered by the solar panels, thus can be converted into a lighting fixture at night“. We find the idea of random photovoltaic parasols placed around the city highly original. Too bad implementing it on a long term is not really an option in most locations.
Speaking of “less is more” design, if your shelf offers little display space, consider opting for one or two standout items to showcase rather than a slew of small finds. In the next image, we see the Magical Thinking Peaks Shelf, crafted from glass and aluminum. Then again, there’s something charming about a curiously cluttered look, especially if items are thoughtfully curated. The Magical Thinking Pyramid Shelf below holds treasures and curiosities. When your shelves make a sculptural statement, don’t overwhelm and block them with clutter. After all, when the design is as fabulous as the Bamboo Step Wall Shelf in the next featured image, you certainly don’t want to cover up the bold form of your shelving.
Sunken living rooms were all the rage in the 60s and 70s, but they can still be just as comfy and stylish in the aughts. With so many of us opting for open plan spaces these days, creating a casual but defined “conversation pit” is a fun way to break up your living room into manageable zones. Read on for some of our favorite inspiration rooms featuring cozy sunken living areas that we’d love to nestle up in.