John Tree
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Rowenta

John Tree is a London based product designer

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Rowenta - Jasper Morrison Brunch set

This was one of the first projects waiting for me when I joined Jasper’s office in 2001. It constituted a complete rebirth of the Rowenta brand.

Brand owners Group SEB were looking for a new design language in order to position Rowenta at the higher end of kitchen electricals. We quickly established a theme that took reference from scientific instruments, using a palette of materials that played a white matte polypropylene against smaller elements of stainless steel and details presented in warm grey.

 
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The bulk of the time invested in this project was actually spent translating the pared-down designs into actual products while maintaining the simplicity of line and economy of detail we were looking for. This required us to develop a very close working relationship with the engineering teams involved; when necessary, challenging traditional approaches to manufacture and assembly.

Our method was to step away from the typical design approach that would use a large number of parts, instead putting substantial effort into creating products that were to a very large extent made up from a single component.

The kettle was kept as simple as possible, reduced to a basic jug, by moving the switch to the base and concealing the sensors and other electrical components within the handle.

The toaster was created with an automatic system for raising and lowering the bread, giving it an unusually precise relationship with its task and allowing us to produce an object of intense minimalism, with just a slot for bread and a button for action.

 
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