Factory Design has created a range of domestic appliances for Better Electrical Products, as the Hong Kong manufacturer moves to improve its profile and take a more proactive stance in product development.
The range, including full-sized and travel irons, an espresso machine and a tea-maker (pictured), is scheduled for launch in Europe this year. Factory Design was appointed to the work, worth a five-figure fee to the group, in 2002.
According to Factory Design creative partner Adrian Berry, the group was briefed to design products that would ‘challenge BEP’s market and [demonstrate its] ability to take a concept through to production.
‘[BEP] manufactures for well-known European brands and knows the crowded marketplace needs products that stand out,’ explains Berry.
The group has endeavoured to add ‘soul and a bit of theatre’ to products that are not generally known for possessing either characteristic, he adds.
‘We wanted to design products that people would enjoy, rather than just shoving into a cabinet.’
The travel iron, which does not need a handle because of its ‘ergonomic’ design, features a removable water tank that ‘glows and pulsates like a heartbeat’ when in use as if to say, ‘I’m on, I’m hot, I’m working,’ says Berry.
The ‘animated’ espresso maker is tucked behind doors that spring open when a button is pushed, while the tea maker, an ‘evolution’ of the iconic 1950s Teasmade, features a removable base and handle that can double as a tray.
BEP approached the London group after seeing its range of cigarette lighters for manufacturer Ronson (DW 25 October 2001), itself a BEP client.