Habitat launched its Very Important Collection last week, comprising a series of 22 products designed by celebrities that will go in-store from September.
The collection is part of the company’s 40th anniversary celebrations and, says a Habitat spokeswoman, was led by creative director Tom Dixon’s desire to ‘talk to people in different fields and bring a new perspective and expertise to Habitat’s product range’.
The company asked stars from the worlds of film, music, sport, modelling, literature and fashion to create or enhance products that are relevant to their lifestyle.
The collection sees actor Ewan McGregor refine the traditional director’s chair, singer Sharleen Spiteri design a CD rack and sprinter Linford Christie create a shoe storage box.
Celebrities worked with Dixon and a technical designer in realising their ideas. According to the spokeswoman, some products were suggested by the retailer, while others were the idea of the celebrity involved.
Dixon explains that the company’s overall product offer has become ‘broader and more multifaceted’ as a result of the experience.
‘There was a definite benefit to us in stepping out of Habitat’s familiar worlds of product design and retail to absorb the ideas of sports people, milliners and philosophers and understand what interests a boxer or flamenco dancer,’ he says.
The only product designers involved are Ikea founder Ingvar Kamprad, who designed a stool, and Habitat founder Terence Conran, who created a clothes-horse called Jeeves.
Contributors include: Manolo Blahnik, Helena Christensen, Daft Punk, Deepak Chopra, Philip Treacy, Paul Smith, Joaquin Cortes, Jean Nouvel, Tanya Streeter, Kristin Scott Thomas, Issey Miyake, Stirling Moss, Lennox Lewis, Gilberto Gil, Louis de BerniÃ¨res, Solange Azagury-Partidge and Carla Bruni.