“I wanted to do a dinner set which would engage the user, and encourage them to use the plates in a more diverse way,” says Turkish-Cypriot designer Hussein Chalayan.
“I think it’s probably the same with the clothes I make – I make a garment you can wear in various ways, so I thought, how can I apply that to dining?”
Hussein Chalayan’s new tableware collection, created from ground pearl, is designed to nest and slot together in sculptural compositions.
The collection nods to the designer’s fascination with the relationship between form and function with designs that invite us to engage with the pieces, in much the same way we do with his clothing.
This interactive element and sense of engagement with the user are at the heart of the curved pieces, which brings a sense of playfulness to the ritual of dining.
Ground pearl, a delicate and luxurious material, proved challenging to work with, its fragility making some of Chalayan’s original designs impossible.
The pieces stay faithful to the lustrous pearly hue, punctuated occasionally with a hit of black and grey.
“I couldn’t make everything I wanted with it. Items can’t get too thin or they don’t come out of the mould – there was a lot that had to be re-addressed,” he explains.
The dinnerware, which had been in the works for almost four years, puts put functionality at the forefront of the design, and each detail ensures ease of use.
The handle-less cup is engineered to ensure a minuscule gap between its walls, so heat doesn’t pass through and it is comfortable to hold.
Plates are in standardized sizes, inviting users to create their own compositions.
Chalayan envisions users adding antique pieces to the mix, in much the same way as one would pair a designer’s clothing with vintage finds.
“When I make the pieces, I’m imagining them as a whole, but actually it allows you to combine them with other plates that you already have and I like that idea,” he says.
“You can have everything in one hue, one language, or you mix things up, and when you mix things up, everything’s much more personalized and exciting to see.”
“There are endless visual possibilities and that’s what really excited me – because once you start putting food on them, the whole thing becomes another compositional entity.”
Project: Hussein Chalayan Tableware for Karaca
Designers: Hussein Chalayan
Manufacturer: KARACA Porzellan Deutschland GmbH