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June 26, 2012

This year's Dwell on Design had some tricks up its sleeve in the form of several oversized booths touting interactive demonstrations from young designers. (Here's to you, Swiss Design Prize, Art Center College of Design, and Quench Design!) Click through our slideshow for some of those highlights, plus our picks for favorite pieces from the Furniture & Accessories section.

Quench Design Lights at Dwell on Design 2012
The Watch Out Pendant by Jason Bird of luxxbox shown in the Quench Design booth. The booth was a collaborative effort between six Australian designers and attracted hordes of visitors all weekend long.
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Quench Design Lights at Dwell on Design 2012
More goodies from Quench Design, including a writing desk by Alexander Lotersztain for Derlot Editions and Björn Rust's GS-1 glass speakers at right.
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Reversible Chair at Dwell on Design 2012
I moderated a panel talk with Nicola Stäubli (along with two other young Swiss who won 2011's Swiss Design Prize) and learned a lot about his "Reversible" chair prototype. It's made of metal tubing that can be re-assembled into two leg configurations, shown here in its lounge arrangement at left and its dining chair form at right. The fabric cover is removable, and as a product, it's simple and ingenious.
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Sled bookshelf at Dwell on Design 2012
Two other highlights from the Swiss Design Prize booth include an ergonomic sled designed by Götte & Partners Industrial Design and the "con.temporary furniture" system devised by Colin Schaelli, in which layered plywood furniture can be assembled from local parts, no screws required. Not pictured is the acoustic textiles designed by Annette Douglas, which won a Dwell on Design award for inventive materiality.
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College Booth at Dwell on Design 2012
The Art Center College for Design, based in Pasadena, packed its booth full of design goodies, from the heavily engineered (breathing mask, powder-coated steel stool for toddlers) to the organic (wooden lights, a pair of sandals flatcut from a piece of leather).
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Block Chair at Dwell on Design 2012
If only we had a highlight reel of showgoers' faces when they sat down on Adam Friedman's Block Chair. The wooden chair is deceptively cushy, as all those blocks rest on a bed of foam pads. For more info, visit Sitskie Furniture Co.
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Josh Herman Ceramics at Dwell on Design 2012
Josh Herman has been developing his signature textured ceramic glazes for a whole decade—the effect is something you'd spy in an immaculate mid-century household.
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Ilan Dei Chair at Dwell on Design 2012
Outdoor furniture is everywhere these days. We liked the Ilan Dei chairs in terms of shape, color, and the fact that it's made from a single piece of vinyl cord.
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Hard Goods Muskoka Chair at Dwell on Design 2012
The Muskoka chair is meant to resemble the classic Adirondack chair in angles and proportion, if not much else. (Fun fact: the designer of the original Adirondack called it the "Muskoka"; its more commonly known moniker refers to the region in which it was first produced.) This version, by Hard Goods, is made of weather-proof concrete on steel legs and weighs half as much as a sofa.
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Cerno Trubridge Lighting at Dwell on Design 2012
Lighting designers David Trubridge and Cerno joined me for a panel at Dwell on Design on Friday; here are some pieces from their respective booths. Shown at left is Cerno's first foray into overhead lighting, which can be mounted flush or as a pendant; at right are Trubridge's signature bent wood lamps.
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Furniture by Bespoke Creative at Dwell on Design 2012
Stainless steel rods inserted into layered plywood make this media cabinet from Bespoke Creative extra sturdy. In the background are some bent and painted aluminum pieces.
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Sunbrella Fabric at Dwell on Design 2012
Sunbrella impressed with its new materials and patterns for its indoor/outdoor contract fabrics. It's hard to believe such soft, textured, and vibrantly-colored upholstery textiles can hold up to the elements so well, but word on the street is that they last for years.
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Poggenpohl booth at Dwell on Design 2012
Sneaking over from the Kitchen & Bath section was Poggenpohl, whose marble countertops ruled the booth. The trim, cantilevered version at right is particularly sharp.
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Shelter Black at Dwell on Design 2012
Last but not least, a nod to Shelter Black's neon-tipped home accessories. Neon's a big trend this year, and shelving, baskets, and racks are a good way to jump on board without regretting it by next year's Dwell on Design. Bonus points for the magazine rack that perfectly matches our June issue!
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Quench Design Lights at Dwell on Design 2012
The Watch Out Pendant by Jason Bird of luxxbox shown in the Quench Design booth. The booth was a collaborative effort between six Australian designers and attracted hordes of visitors all weekend long.

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