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March 22, 2013
More than 40,000 design aficionados descended on Reykjavik during the fifth annual DesignMarch festival. A record-breaking crowd, about 20% of Reykjavik’s population, browsed the latest in housewares, furniture, and fashion. Local and foreign designers showcased creations in shops throughout downtown Reykjavik, in museums, as well as in the two-year old concert hall, Harpa. From March 14-17, established designers such as Vik Prjonsdottir, a debut of upcycling designer Krukka, and textile designer Mary treated festival participants to new products.
Sealblankets by Vik Prjonsdottir
Vik Prjonsdottir gained international attention for their wearable Sealblankets for children and adults. The British-Japanese design duo came back to Reykjavik to debut a new collection of wonderfully wooly blankets in vibrant primary and pastel colors.
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Fishbone model making kits by Roshildur Jonsdottir
Something fishy was on display in Reykjavik’s only product design gallery, Spark Design Space. Roshildur Jonsdottir’s model making kits featuring fishbone pieces, delighted children and adults. Complete with a set of paints and brushes, crafters could create a variety of designs. The idea was described by Roshildur a as collaboration between scientists, fish producers and artists.
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Christmas Ptarmigan by Ragnheidur Tryggvadottir
Ragnheidur Tryggvadottir’s Christmas Ptarmigan ornaments celebrate Icelandic tradition. Ptarmigans were the traditional Christmas dish for Icelandic families that were too poor to serve lamb for the holidays. The birds have since become a luxury at Christmastime in Iceland, and are still enjoyed by families. The powder-coated steel ornaments debuted at DesignMarch.
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DesignMarch furniture installation
Krukka’s motto is to keep it mobile, versatile, interactive and playful. Krukka designers aim to create from objects that are often thought of as rubbish. Plywood slats were fixed to become stools, cast off wood was used to create chairs, and crates were fastened into shelves.
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The Virtue Pillow by Mary
The Virtue Pillow by Mary features positive messages in Icelandic. Sayings include: patience, honesty, faith, positivity, integrity, and friendship. According to the designer, the virtues are a reminder of the intangible things that matter in life. Available in three colors, the pillows are made from undyed Icelandic wool.
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Ceramic vases by Maari
Foreign designers were also featured prominently at DesignMarch. Finnish ceramics brand Maari showcased vases made from the raku pottery firing technique, which creates unique patterns. The Koivu vase, which is 26 cm tall, resembles birch wood. The brand also offers decorative raku eggs and bark tiles.
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Modern chair by Reynir Syrusson
Reynir Syrusson’s furniture designs are classically Scandinavian—clean lines, muted colors, and minimalist to a tee. The design studio makes tailor-made furniture as well as mass-produced lamps, light fixtures and accessories for the home and office.
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Bedroom furniture by Krukka
Krukka’s bedroom furniture designs were the highlight at Harpa’s main hall. Touting a “no nonsense” approach, Krukka’s creators aim to marry sustainability with classic design. The studio’s bed is fashioned out of upcycled wood and set on casters, keeping it mobile. Krukka, which also creates playgrounds, films, and interiors, strives to keep its designs “rebelliously raw” by re-circulating what has been discarded.
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Concrete bench by Hildur Steinthorsdottir and Runar Tho
Concrete furniture is a staple in Icelandic design. Architect Hildur Steinthorsdottir and product designer Runar Thor’s concrete bench is ideal for braving the elements in public spaces and private gardens.
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Sealblankets by Vik Prjonsdottir
Vik Prjonsdottir gained international attention for their wearable Sealblankets for children and adults. The British-Japanese design duo came back to Reykjavik to debut a new collection of wonderfully wooly blankets in vibrant primary and pastel colors.

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