Ikea is joining forces with the fashion set, partnered with Virgil Abloh, one of the hottest names on plant fashion, Louis Vuitton's menswear artistic director and founder of fashion label Off White.
The Ikea range, Markerad, has been designed with those moving into their first home in mind and demand has been such that Irish fans had to sign up to be in with a chance to win a limited number of free tickets to then visit the store on an allocated day, peruse the collection and buy.
Those that did get a ticket can buy up to five items from the collection which ranges from a cushion cover, €12, to a wooden dining table, €279. While fashionable, all items are also functional.
Billed as "fashion you can't wear", the standout pieces include a back-lit portrait of the Mona Lisa, €75, a rug woven to resemble an Ikea receipt, €279, and an orange toolbox labelled Homework, €17. Other designs up for grabs include a glass cabinet with handles that resemble red nails, a wooden chair that comes with a triangular red doorstop attached and a fake grass mat emblazoned with the words "wet grass"
Irish wins in Spain
Two firms took home prizes in Architecture Master Prize awards, held in Bilbao, Spain, earlier this week.
Róisín Lafferty's interiors company Kingston Lafferty won medium firm of the year in its residential interior design category where she picked up her price at a ceremony at the city's Guggenheim Museum. The fact that she won the award in a building by Frank Gehry – whose work she had studied in college at DIT, doing interior and furniture design – was an added bonus, she says.
Lafferty graduated top of her class but it was at the depths of the recession and interior design studios were shuttering their doors and architectural practices had put their interiors businesses into cold storage. She went to London to get a job but found that she needed three years experience before anyone could take her on so instead she did a masters in product and spatial design at Kingston University.
“This solution-based [course] taught me to think differently, to look at design more holistically and to factor in lighting, flooring, furniture and artworks,” she says. A round, inlaid marble floor set into a square shaped extension, for example, helps define a living area within the greater open-plan space. The curve of the sofa in this part of the room echoes the curve of the circle and it’s this kind-of joined-up thinking that makes her stand out from the crowd.
She and her team also do bespoke joinery for all their jobs, working closely with Moore O’Gorman, a firm that with whom she has weekly progress meetings.
Meanwhile, Niall McCullough of McCullough Mulvin took home a gong in the Heritage Architecture category for the firm’s sublime work on St Mary’s Medieval Mile museum. Housed on the site of a 13th century cruciform church in Kilkenny, the space shows the bones of the building and is also available for private hire. It would make a wonderful Christmas party venue and can seat up to 100 for banquet-style dining. It comes with one caveat: red wine is not allowed. Well-behaved guests only.