Fade Away

This past August, Scottish native, designer Catherine Aitken, won the 2012 Time to Design award, sponsored by Normann Copenhagen, the Danish Architectural Press, the Danish Association of Wood and Furniture Industries, and OeO. The public-private cooperative granted Aitken a three-month-long residency at the Danish Art Workshops. During that time, Aitken created her recently debuted collection, Fade.

Stacked fade stools in various colors.
Although it took some time to achieve her desired result, Aitken continued to tweak the idea until she was pleased with the final product. "I find the visual effect of the gathering lines endlessly satisfying, the way that these furniture items change as you approach them from different directions and distances. I like to design products that provide gentle surprises and a sustained visual intrigue, at some point these pieces seemed to do just that!" says Aitken. Image courtesy of Malene Jork Heide.

Fade explores of gradient color by playing with levels of light, hue, and pattern. Although Aitken began with a lighting collection, she eventually focused on a set of stools and a bench. To make the stools (shown above), Aitken topped powder-coated steel frames with a plywood plate, then wrapped them with a combination of two cotton cords sourced from Japan. "The stools play with this notion of 'fade' in relation to a circle, which sits very comfortably," says Aitken. Aitken feels as though the bench is "less resolved," but likes that it shows off how the concept of fading colors can be applied to different forms.

Detail shot of the Fade Stool
“I spent a great deal of time searching for the perfect cotton cord, and finally settled on two; the first is very natural and malleable and the second is more refined with a slight sheen. These choices added an appropriate level of contrast of matte versus satin and provided a little cushioning," says Aitken about her choice of materials. Image courtesy of Malene Jork Heide.

Her collection will be on display until December 6, 2012, at Normann Copenhagen's flagship store in Copenhagen.

The 29-year-old designer, Catherine Aitken, on one of her stools for Fade.
The 29-year-old designer, Catherine Aitken, on one of her stools for Fade.

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