Photos by Akseli Valmunen
As much as that teapot design above might suggest otherwise, I promise you won't get in trouble for reading this at work. That's right, I said teapot (c'mon—don't act like you didn't see those tea leaves on the side). Sure, it might resemble some sort of illicit or semi-erotic paraphernalia, but this tabletop brewer is really just a minimalist approach to steeping your favorite leaf. Finnish designer Nikolo Kerimov takes a note from nature in regards to the pot's process, specifically the motion of rain falling over a mountain top. I'll leave that to your own interpretation.
As any warm drink enthusiast recognizes, brewing a cup of coffee or tea is just as much a visual experience as it is a ritual. Following suit of the many well-designed beverage makers out there, "Upon" is pretty eye-catching when it comes to form and would look mighty nice nestled next to a lineup of well-designed tea canisters. NSFW doppelgangers aside, the combination of glass, ceramic and cork is the detail that really won me over. Way to hit us with the houseware trifecta.
Also notable is Kerimov's "Shelfie" design. Much like the "Pop-Up Linen" wardrobe we covered a while back, this storage unit can be flat-packed down into a convenient carrying capsule.
The textile shelves come with wooden pegs that slide right into each end of the fabric piece. You can change the size, position and even the use of the ledges depending on how you peg them onto the wooden structure. Hey, if function isn't your thing, you could even turn Shelfie into a decor piece by just stretching the fabric shelves across the frame in interesting patterns (a zig-zag arrangement immediately comes to mind) and slotting them into the base at staggered levels.
I can't speak to the lifespan of Shelfie—I can imagine that once the fabric begins to stretch, your stability is limited—but this could be a great option for dorm dwellers, or those with less fragile belongings to showcase. At the moment, both the Upon teapot and Shelfie are prototypes that were designed for coursework at Aalto University, but you never know what could happen when the Internet catches wind of something interesting.