Here, we ask designers to take a selfie and give us an inside look at their life.
Occupation: Head of design for Hem Design Studio.
Hometown: Bielefeld, Germany.
Studio location: Stockholm.
Describe what you make: As head of design for Hem Design Studio Sweden, I oversee the brand’s strategic assortment, growth, product development, and the color and textile selections. Hem collaborates with international designers to create beautiful and reasonable products which then are manufactured and distributed throughout our own channels. Part of my work is to write briefs for our collaborators, evaluate their proposals, develop prototypes together with our European production network, and ensure the final product reaches Hem’s quality standard.
The most important thing you’ve designed to date: I’m most proud of the of the Kumo Sofa designed by Anderssen & Voll. It features a hidden easy assembly function which was a technical challenge with tight tolerances, along with a big investment and high expectations. The result turned out perfectly with its shapes and sewing details.
Describe the problem your work solves: Well, I turn designers’ sketches into products… sometimes, that’s the first problem to solve! In all seriousness, I appreciate when we speak the same language as our designers and they understand our brand—that makes the entire process very smooth. The product’s actual design happens in the development phase, where we determine if it’s reasonable, the right value for the price, compact packaging, and smart in shipments. We figure out proportions and materials, optimize production processes, and minimize material use.
A new or forthcoming project we should know about: Hem Fest! In conjunction with the Los Angeles Design Festival, we’re hosting a celebration of the Los Angeles design community with a raffle auction of reimagined Max Lamb “Last Stools” benefiting local urban design nonprofit LA-Más. The event will take place on June 22 at our showroom where we’ll be raffling Last Stool designs by ETC.etera, Kelly Wearstler, LA-Más, Oliver M. Furth, Rapt Studio, Snøhetta, The Archers, and wHY Objects with proceeds from ticket sales going to support LA-Mas’s mission of improving the future of underserved LA communities. We’ll also showcase a table tennis structure designed by Formation Association, as well as unveiling a new group exhibition from Object Permanence, complementary stick-and-poke tattoos from artist Anouk Aumont plus a DJ performance.
What you absolutely must have in your studio: Textile samples inspire me for upcoming collections. I like to have a “creative mess” with prototypes and 3D printed small furniture—this helps me oversee all ongoing product developments and make ideas grow. Besides that, I always need headphones to concentrate.
What you do when you’re not working: I live in a little house surrounded by nature, lakes, and forests. I love to work in my garden, host dinners for dear friends, walk to the sauna close by, and swim afterwards in the frozen lake. I go a lot to museums—my favorite is the Fotografiska Museum in Stockholm and the recently reopened National Museum.
Sources of creative envy: I travel a lot and always try to find nice places with special atmospheres, places with an aura, and great interiors. That inspires me the most. But also talking to interesting people who are similarly curious and don’t feel limited in their capabilities. In my world almost everything is possible.
The distraction you want to eliminate: Meetings.
Concrete or marble? Concrete.
High-rise or townhouse? Townhouse.
Remember or forget? Forget.
Aliens or ghosts? Ghosts.
Dark or light? Light.