Modern Ikebana

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By Amanda Dameron
Jaime Hayon's new vessel for Fritz Hansen reimagines an ancient flower-arranging technique.

Spanish designer Jaime Hayon's patented exuberance is on grand display in his 2016 Objects accessories collection for Fritz Hansen, his latest collaboration with the greatly respected Danish furniture company. One standout among the many objects is the Ikebana vase, a blown-glass creation with a perforated brass layer that highlights and separates choice blooms. We recently borrowed one and took it for a test drive by asking local designer Katsuya Nishimori to create a special arrangement for us (below). 


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Height and strength, for at least a few grounding blooms, is a primary consideration for a successful ikebana arrangement. For us, Nishimori selected fiddleheads, the tall curled specimens, above, to great effect. 

Next we reached out to Jaime Hayon to share a few of his early sketches for the vase, as we know that the designer is constantly drawing as part of his creative process. He also shared a few thoughts on the process of developing the piece.




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Dwell: We are always moved by a modern interpretation of an age-old technique. How much did you know about the process of Ikebana when you began sketching ideas for this vase? 


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Jaime Hayon: I am passionate about flower arrangements, and I'm an admirer of Japanese tradition. Simplicity and elegance are hard to come by when it comes to flower arrangements. The thought behind this piece was to create an element that would be most beautiful with the simplest and most natural flowers. The fact that little water is necessary and that stems and roots need to breathe is essential for the longevity of flowers and plants. The concept for the vase brings flexibility, lightness, and elegance to flower arrangements. Very much can be achieved with very little, due to the nature of the object. 

Dwell: How did you decide upon the materials? 

Hayon: It was quite simple in this case: transparent glass so that you can see the entire element (flower, weed, stem) and a brass base with perforations that would lift the arrangement, help everything stay in place, allow for air to circulate so that water can last longer and be easily replaced, and lastly, provide a visually rich complement in strength to the glass.


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The Ikebana vase, by Jaime Hayon for Fritz Hansen, is $245, available from SUITE NY


Interested in creating your own modern ikebana? Here are a few more recommended products to get you started:


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Ikebana trimmers (top) and flower shears (bottom), from $82, designed by Ono, Japan-based makers Tajika, available from Nalata Nalata