Sometimes a design succeeds by adding just one very simple component, something that makes you wonder why you didn’t think of it yourself. In the case of Japanese company Nendo’s “Totte Plates,” that simple component is a handle.
Cooking utensils such as pots and frying pans have handles, but tableware such as plates and bowls do not. We have designed plates and bowls with handles, ‘totte’ in Japanese, giving them new functions: they are easier to carry, they can be hanged and stored with hooks, and are easier to hold when the plates and bowls are hot. Not only has this resulted in new ways of using them but provided them with a strong “sense of security as a tool”. The product lineup consists of round plates and bowls, each in three different sizes and in five different colours.
In addition to the handle, the plates fit inside each other to help for storage. Dezeen states that the plates are part of a number of recent designs that attempt to address the problem of small living spaces. They state that David Roman Lieshout made a foldable bicycle that — like the plates— can be hung on one’s wall. In 2014 Ikea launched the PS collection for smaller spaces, although the company frames it in grander terms than “for people who live in small apartments.” The collection is for people who live in “unconventional spaces and never live in one place for long.”
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