The useDesign logo says a lot about the objects it adorns. It says they’re rigorously hand-(re)made and all-Italian. It pretty much guarantees they’re good-looking, quirky and exclusive. It promises eye-catching colours and that vintage air of familiar things put to unfamiliar tasks.And it certifies low environmental impact, since everything that comes out of the useDesign workshop near Milan is crafted from industrial waste, unwanted stock or odds and ends picked up at a flea market. Take two of the latest creations: u.fo ceiling lights made with discarded pots; and table-cum-stool Colombina.
Given the nature of the materials used, some products are necessarily one-offs, some come in limited editions while others can be reproduced in greater numbers. They’re sold in a handful of stores around Italy but you can always contact the guys at useDesign, young creatives who are also game for creating stuff to order, set and stand design and even whole interior design projects. Founded by Luca Scarpellini – stage designer, mechanical engineer and no stranger to some of the circus arts if I heard right – just over 3 years ago, useDesign has its HQ and workshop at Made in Mage, a bustling creative space and incubator for sustainable own-produced design in Sesto San Giovanni.