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Speaking from experience: Electrolux Design Lab 2012 jury members talk design

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In a global village where popular products and services can be easily duplicated, what differentiates one from the other is the experience they offer. The professional members of the Electrolux Design Lab (EDL) 2012 jury, Michelin Star chef David Oldani and design blogger Kelly Beall have made careers out of creating experiences in fine dining and design respectively.

These two professional experience creators are thus well-placed to evaluate the 10 finalist entries for this year’s EDL. Its theme, Experience Design, challenges students to create products that enhance the way we experience home life with innovative design concepts that create fuller sensory experiences.

On 25 October, Oldani and Beall will be part of the jury who will crown the best design entry in Milan, Italy.  They share with us their take on design, the EDL and creating experiences of our own.

 

1. What are you looking out for when judging the EDL designs? 

Kelly Beall is a top design blogger who makes it her job to sell perception – helping people imagine how their life could be through products, music, art, recipes or anything aesthetic.

Beall: I’ll be paying particular attention to how well I can imagine each product working within my own lifestyle. Is it intuitive? Does it fit my clean aesthetic? Would I look forward to interacting with the piece?

Oldani: Functionality, first of all, and aesthetic appeal. I’m firmly convinced that the content can be greatly shaped and enhanced by the container it’s held in.

2. What do you like about Electrolux products and why do you use them?

Beall: I love the sleek, contemporary designs that fit right in with my aesthetic. I’ll be in the market for a dishwasher within the year and will definitely be looking at Electrolux.

Oldani: I started using Electrolux equipment many years ago, working with master chefs worldwide, such as Alain Ducasse in Monte Carlo, Albert Roux in London, Gualtiero Marchesi in Milan, Pierre Hermè in Paris. I always found in these big kitchens at least one – if not more – Electrolux products.

In 2011, I decided to choose the most innovative Electrolux Professional solutions – the air-o-steam Touchline combi-oven and the chrome Fry Top from the XP horizontal cooking range – for my kitchen at D’O restaurant in Milan, because I met with people from the company who really took the time to explain to me how to obtain the best results from my recipes. 

3. Which Electrolux appliance do you think best exemplifies the theme of this year’s EDL?

Beall: The Beverage Centre, which can store drinks, cold cuts and wines for easy serving at parties, does a good job of exemplifying this year’s competition. It fulfils a need the consumer has, in an innovative and attractive way, and yet manages to blend in seamlessly with Electrolux’s line of appliances.

Oldani: Without a doubt, the air-o-steam Touchline combi oven and the chrome Fry Top from the XP horizontal cooking range.  I think they reflect the theme best with their state-of-the-art, simple and environmentally friendly features to prepare and serve food.

They have become the favourite ‘allies’ of my pop cuisine, ensuring extreme precision, ease of use, flexibility, efficiency and food quality, as well as the possibility to personalize my recipes, making them really unique.

Kelly Beall is a top design blogger who makes it her job to sell perception – helping people imagine how their life could be through products, music, art, recipes or anything aesthetic.

4. Could you give us some DIY tips from your respective professions for our readers?

Beall: In blogging or websites, if you’re passionate about whatever it is you’re putting out there, people are going to take notice and that’s going to get you far.  Second, design is important so don’t overlook it.  If you’re not a designer yourself and are putting a site together, I would definitely invest a little in getting some help.  When in doubt go minimal!

Oldani: Two simple tips for recreating a professional dining experience at home – when you decorate your dining room, I suggest choosing clean lines, special objects and a minimalist style, in order to keep your mind focused on your emotional state and let it guide the mood of the whole dining experience at home.  For example, I try to avoid floral decorations on the table, since I personally believe the perfume and aroma of herbs and flowers can affect and alter the flavour of foods.

Second, dedicate as much time as possible to cooking, so you have the time to organise everything optimally and watch over every aspect of the meal.

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