In the last edition of Maison & Objet, the Parisian interior design tradeshow, boxes were a real hit. Large and small, for storage or purely ornamental, made from cardboard or metal: no matter the form or function, they are extremely versatile in their simplicity. As well as being items of furniture, they are also packed with resources and provide a source of inspiration. They were just that for us.
Boxes making a name for themselves
Some boxes have even become famous around the world.
For example, matchboxes began to be illustrated from the late nineteenth century onwards to spread political messages or advertising. “Phillumeny” refers precisely to the hobby of collecting matchboxes.
Then there are tin boxes, which date back a particularly long way to the 13th century, but only spread from Great Britain to the rest of the world from the mid-nineteenth century.
And how could we not mention the Tiffany Blue Box, a universal symbol of style and elegance: “Tiffany has one thing in stock that you cannot buy of him for as much money as you may offer, he will only give it to you. And that is one of his boxes.” (New York Sun, 1906).
Another well-known name when it comes to boxes is the MC 1 Architecture Box by Bruno Munari, a construction board game from 1945 created by this famous Italian designer. It contains a series of different shaped pear wood pieces which can be used to construct different buildings: houses, churches, castles, hotels, skyscrapers, towers, stations, hangars, and the list goes on.
Design inspired by boxes
Boxes that contain objects; boxes that contain other boxes and multiply the storage space; boxes that open and boxes that close; boxes that transform into something else. Design is not a game, but it allows you to play: with shapes, spaces, materials and colours. This is what inspired the Dandy collection by Santalucia Mobili.
We created Dandy using a special folding construction technique, where the structure appears to be a single piece that can be finished off with a framed door in different colours and finishes. Just like in a cardboard box, a few folds create a simple yet versatile object.
From the concept of a box came the inspiration for original furniture solutions. Shapes open and close, breaking up and amplifying the space. There are many composition solutions: the inserts can be creatively transformed into playful units that give form to the perfect living space.