Arne Jacobsen – Danish Design Icon

 Arne Jacobsen (1902-1971) was one of Denmark’s most influential architects and designers. A hero to lovers of Nordic style – his Swan and Egg chairs are iconic – no visit to Copenhagen is complete without taking in some of his legacy.
Although he is known today mostly for his modernist furniture, Jacobsen actually disapproved of the term designer, considering himself an architect first and foremost. Indeed many of the furnishings that established his reputation were initially part of the overall designs of his architectural projects. He was a modernist and naturalist that prized utility.
Fastidious to the point of distraction, Jacobsen was noted for his close attention-to-detail in everything connected to a structure, from its grounds to its interior furnishings. It became a trademark, perhaps best illustrated by the SAS Hotel in Copenhagen that he designed in the late fifties, where Jacobsen assumed responsibility for everything from the striking cigar-box shape down to the ashtrays in the rooms. Like much of Jacobsen’s architectural work, the hotel was initially controversial with a public that disapproved of the stark, almost brutish geometric forms. Yet is has now become a defining landmark on the Copenhagen skyline and is considered the world’s first “designer hotel.”

SAS Hotel in Copenhagen
Reception area of the SAS Hotel designed by Jacobsen. Image courtesy of
Room 606
Room 606 at the SAS Hotel in Copenhagen. Image Courtesy of
Egg Chair
Arne Jacobsen Egg Chair in Room 606 – sublime. Image courtesy of
He had originally planned to become a painter, but switched to architecture at the suggestion of his father, who viewed it as a more secure future. Jacobsen’s artistic skill is evident though in his surviving presentation drawings. Having studied under Kay Fisker at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, Jacobsen won plaudits early in his career, and became known for his avant-garde, ultra-modernist outlook, as well as an abject refusal to compromise on quality at any step.
In 1943 Jacobsen escaped to Sweden, where he focused on wallpaper and fabrics, before returning after the war to a Denmark in urgent need of housing and new public buildings, that welcomed his Spartan, cost-effective approach. Architectural functionalism was embraced by the Danes in the sixties, and Jacobsen’s work was in great demand. Many large commissions followed, but by this stage his furniture was also meeting significant critical approval.
Having travelled extensively in his youth, whilst Jacobsen’s designs never relinquished their Danish roots, they also possessed a distinct international outlook. Perhaps his best-known work, the innovative Seven Series chair, was inspired by his American contemporaries Charles and Ray Eames and their work with plywood bent into several dimensions. It went on to sell over five million units, and become possibly the world’s most copied chair design, one of which was made notorious by Christine Keeler’s provocative pose. Like so much of Arne Jacobsen’s output, the Seven Series was notable not only for style, but functionality – lightweight, stackable and compact, a Modernist’s dream.

Keeler on Ant Chair
Famous image with Christine Keeler posing on an Ant Chair. Image courtesy of
Arne Jacobsen’s Ant, Egg and Swan chairs similarly went on to become timeless design classics, instantly recognisable by their unique silhouettes. Jacobsen also produced the Cylinda Line of tableware for Stelton, which made waves with their brushed stainless-steel finish and simplistic cylindrical outlines.

Arne Jacobsen Cylinda
Fashion designer Paul Smith has reworked a coffee pot by late Danish designer Arne Jacobsen to mark the 50th anniversary of Danish brand Stelton. Image courtesy of Dezeen

To Jacobsen, the thought of relaxation was completely alien, and several of his projects were still to be completed at the time of his death. He was known for inflicting punishing round-the-clock schedules on his team, and for his perfectionism (born from a need to test the outer reaches of his design and materials) that led to frequent delays. Yet this avuncular pipe-smoker also had a great sense of fun, as can easily be seen in the charming illuminated “mushroom” canopy of his early filling-station at Skovshoved, and the comic lifeguard towers at one of his best-remembered projects, the Bellevue Beach Complex.

Petrol Station - Arne Jacobsen
Futuristic Petrol Station designed by Arne Jacobsen. Image courtesy of –

Jacobsen designed some stunning lights, our favourites being the Bellevue light in 1929 and the AJ1 suspension light which he designed specifically for the Hotel SAS in Copenhagen.

Bellevue Floor Light
&Tradition Bellevue floor light. Image courtesy of

Arne Jacobsen to summarize was a Danish design visionary and genius. Without him today design would be different.

The Team at Cimmermann

Credits and Links:

Scandinavian Style – The Things We Love About it

Scandinavian design emerged in the 1950s in the Scandinavian countries Denmark, Norway, Sweden and Finland. It is a design movement characterized by simplicity, minimalism and functionality. Soft subtle colour pallettes are often favoured with oak or walnut wood finishes.

The Lunning Prize, awarded to outstanding Scandinavian designers between 1951 and 1970, was instrumental in both making Scandinavian design a recognized commodity, and in defining the profile of Scandinavian design. Since 2006, the tradition of a pan-Nordic design award has been resumed with the Forum AID Award.

The idea that beautiful and functional everyday objects should not only be affordable to the wealthy, but to all, is a core theme in the development of modernism and functionalism. This was realised in post-WWII Scandinavian design. The ideological background was the emergence of a particular Scandinavian form of social democracy in the 1950s, as well as the increased availability of new low-cost materials and methods for mass production. Scandinavian design often makes use of form-pressed wood, plastics, anodized or enamelled aluminum or pressed steel.

Some of the most influential designers in the Scandinavian Design movement included Verner Panton, Arne Jacobsen, Nils Strinning and Hans Wegner. From the modern crop of design companies Muuto and HAY lead the way with their simple and affordable furniture/lighting designs. The colour palettes that both companies use are bang on trend but at the same time timeless. The soft pinks, greens and greys mix so well with oak wood.

Muuto and HAY
Muuto and HAY furniture, pinks, greys and greens

Designed in 1949 by Nils Strinning the String shelving system sums up Scandinavian design at its best. It is modular, simple, practical, affordable and comes in a range of beautiful colours. To think a design so simple still looks as good today as the day it was designed is a testament to design genius.

String Pocket
String Pocket shelving in Ash and White

 Gubi the Danish design house offer a real mix of Scandinavian classics by the likes of Greta Grossman, particular favourite is the Grasshopper Light. The colours of the products they design are truly Scandinavian and the furniture is mainly made from Wood. The earthy tones in the image below is Scandinavian to the core and is warmed up with the luxurious Walnut chairs and table.

Gubi Ronde Light
Gubi Ronde light and dining set – lovely warm colours
&Tradition Mayor Sofa
&Tradition Mayor Sofa in a beautiful yellow tone
Scandinavian Design
Dark tones, set off by the beautiful &Tradition Ice Chandelier

 &Tradition a Danish design company are real favourites here at Cimmermann. There mix of Design Classics by the likes of Verner Panton  and more modern designs by the likes of Benjamin Hubert make for an exciting company to look out for.

Scandinavian Kitchen
Lovely Green colour and marble top in this Scandinavian Kitchen. Image courtesy of Pinterest

Scandinavian Style offers simple and classic design, hope we have inspired you to go Nordic!!!

The Team at Cimmermann

Credits and Links:


My Scandinavian Home Blogspot

Design Boom – Forum AID Award

Our Favourite Homes from TV and the Movies

We often spend years investing in the stories of characters we love – their living spaces becoming our own. Here are a few interior design styles that we adore:

Don and Megan’s Apartment, Mad Men

Don: Let yourself out, lock the door behind you…as a courtesy.
Faye: You want to leave me here? You sure?
Don: I’m taking everything interesting with me.
Don and Megan’s huge, modern (for the 60s) pad is as intricately put together as every other Mad Men set. This is a place built for entertaining, with a white-carpeted sunken lounge; pass-through windows into the kitchen area; shagpile rugs and designer seating dotted throughout, as well as a huge terrace overlooking the Manhattan skyline. The set-designers have clearly had a lot of fun sourcing everything – the dining-table is a retro Danish affair, while many of the other furnishings are from American vintage and antiques stores, as well as bargains found on Craigslist, giving the apartment a very genuine feel.

Takeaway: An open fireplace with an interesting surround adds a lot of character to a room.

Image –

Home of Don Draper
Mad Men Don Drapers Apartment
Olivia Pope’s Apartment, Scandal

 “I imagined your place a thousand times. I like it. It’s very you.”

Few shows since Sex and the City have caused such a stir with their star’s wardrobe as Scandal, and you’d expect that attention-to-detail to carry through into Olivia’s apartment, even though she barely spends any time there. “She decorates for comfort. She isn’t that fussy.” says one production designer.

She may not be fussy but she certainly doesn’t settle for anything but the best. Olivia’s apartment is truly elegant, with calming pastel shades throughout, and beautiful arches and moldings based on those found in some classic LA apartments.

The kitchen, whilst small, is jazzed up by jet black tiles that contrast brightly with white cabinets, while attractive lamps are found on every surface, highlighting Olivia’s gorgeous furnishings even in the corners where the camera rarely focus.

Takeaway: Even though we rarely see it, the opulence of Olivia’s bedding has had online style-gurus in a flurry since the series began.

Her office is pretty cool too featuring some iconic Eames EA117 Office Chairs, a lady with taste.

Olivia Pope - Scandal
Olivia Pope’s Office – Image courtesy of

Carrie Bradshaw’s Apartment, Sex and the City

‘”Beauty is fleeting, but a rent-controlled apartment overlooking the park is forever.”

This iconic apartment is an extension of Carrie’s personality – warm, and busy, yet under control. The eclectic furnishings and well-placed lighting give every room a super-stylish, feminine environment. In a recent survey by The Daily Mail, Carrie’s apartment topped our inspiration hit list.

Everyone remembers Carrie’s magnificent walk-in wardrobe, essential for a woman whose shoe collection has been estimated to be worth $40,000, but the apartment has plenty of other memorable features.

The white-tiled bathroom gives a great sense of openness despite the perma-clutter, and her attractive kitchen, homely yet still Manhattan chic, gets far too little screen time. It’s so comfortingly familiar that when Carrie eventually moves out, it’s just as heart-breaking for fans of the show as it is for her when she paces around the empty space.

Takeaway: Sex and the City demonstrates how even apartments short on space can max up the style factor.

Carrie Bradshaw
Carrie Bradshaw apartment interior – image courtesy of

Holly Golightly’s Apartment, Breakfast At Tiffany’s

“If I could find a real-life place that made me feel like Tiffany’s, then I’d buy some furniture and give the cat a name.”

Holly was the original independent girl about town, with the fantasy home and wardrobe, and the glamorous lifestyle. Her tiny apartment, in a 4-storey brownstone townhouse on the Upper East Side is sparsely decorated to the point where it looks as though she’s just moving in, or out, when in fact she’s already well-established.

The furnishings are minimal because this isn’t Holly’s home, it’s just another staging post on her life’s journey. If you watch the party scene for example, virtually everyone is standing. There’s no seating anywhere. But this lady knows how to work with what she’s got – when you’ve limited space, you need to get creative with storage. That means shoes tucked into the fridge, and suitcases doubling as tables.

Holly also displays a knack for furnishing her apartment on a tight budget – the charming white loveseat is actually a bathtub cut in half (furniture hacking in the 60s, love it!) and the cast-iron bed where she recovers from her hangovers, the cluttered dresser and fridge are all eye-catching pieces easily reproduced today in fantastic vintage styles.

Takeaway: Attractive movable frames, like the lattice one Holly uses to separate her kitchen and hallway, are a great way to maximise small spaces and keep room design looking fresh.

Breakfast at Tiffanys
the exterior of Holly Golightly’s apartment in New York image courtesy of –
TV interiors can be inspiring, hope you like the ones we chose to share with you.

The Team at Cimmermann.

Images and Credits:

Cimmermann – Pinterest

Muuto – New Brand in Focus

Muuto is a young company but already an internationally successful design company. Their vision is to keep adding new chapters to the already inspirational Scandinavian design history. This vision is emphasised by the name Muuto – inspired by the Finnish word ‘muutos’, meaning ‘change’ or ‘new perspective.’

Already firmly rooted in Scandinavian design culture, they hand pick the best designers from Sweden, Norway, Finland and Denmark, and give them the freedom to express their design philosophy when designing everyday home interior products.

From the very beginning, the two founders of Muuto – Peter Bonnén and Kristian Byrge were
highly ambitious and strived to have their products represented in leading design shop all
around the world. Today, just 7 years after the company was founded, Muuto’s collection
of furniture, lighting and accessories is sold in more than 1000 of the World’s leading design shops on six continents. And more than 50 new designs have been launched from around 30 leading designers as TAF Architects, Norway Says, Anderssen & Voll, Lars Tornøe and Louise Campbell, all sharing Muuto’s ambition of reviving the proud Scandinavian design tradition.

We pick some of the stand out pieces from the Muuto collection –

Nerd Chair

Nerd Chairs
Muuto Nerd Chairs – cool colours

While the appearance of Nerd is unique, the overall expression, material and craftsmanship all have references to classic Scandinavian design values. Nerd is a chair that stands out as a very personal and distinct interpretation of an all-wood chair. Muuto Nerd Chair comes in 8 beautiful colours.

Rest Sofa

Rest Sofa
Rest Sofa – comfort at a premium!!!

Rest by Muuto is one of the most comfortable sofas we have ever sat on. The relaxed form combined with the solid wood frame make the Rest a comfortable and modern sofa design. The Rest Three Seater Sofa is available in a number of fabrics and in a wide choice of colours. Sitting on Oak legs the Rest sofa oozes Scandinavian elegance and design.

Mini Stacked

Muuto Stacked
Muuto Stacked – great idea for kitchen storage

The Mini Stacked system by Muuto provides a storage solution with infinite potential.  Cubes hang neatly on the wall either individually or together, creating a stylish and functional storage system. Boxes can be clipped together using the clips. Mini Stacked is available in 9 different individual blocks and with 4 different clip colours – White, grey, Yellow and Rose.

70/70 table

70/70 table
70/70 Table – concrete and soft lighting

The 70/70 table is a study in geometric forms identifying the dimensions for a well-balanced table. It has an almost anonymous expression but with careful detailing. The table is based upon two cast aluminium squared frames with the dimensions 70 x 70 cms. The simple Scandinavian aesthetics balanced with the warmth from the layered wood adds personality to the table with multiple functions, from dining table to home office. 70/70 table by Muuto is available in 2 different sizes and 4 different colours.

Leaf Table Lamp

Muuto Leaf Light
Leaf Light in green – love this colour

Leaf Light successfully fuses together LED technology with stunning design. Depending on the viewing angle and how the shade is turned, Leaf table lamp will subtly transform its shape to create a graphic and leaf-like silhouette in the room. Leaf by Muuto is also available in a floor version. Leaf comes in 5 beautiful colours options.

Reflect Sideboard & Drawers

Reflect Drawers by Muuto
Reflect Drawers – love the curved handles

Reflect by Muuto owes its stunning and unique looks to the phenomenon under which it was envisioned: The natural light of Scandinavia. The four corners on each front have a unique thickness and curve that contributes to the light reflections of the drawers. Muuto Reflect is available in two different colours – Black or Natural Oak. Reflect has 2 drawers on the right hand side and 2 doors on the left handside.

To get more design inspiration watch this video from Muuto

We love the colours and designs Muuto use – sure you will too, view the Muuto Collectioin

Credits & Links:

Design Classic – Make that investment in 2014

Buying a Design classic can be a big investment, but at the same time rewarding and cost effective. Let the Team at Cimmermann advise you of the best to invest in for 2014 –

Vitra Eames Lounge Chair & Ottoman
Available in several different finishes and now in 2 different sizes, our favourite is the Santos Palisander Shell with Black leather. The quality and craftmanship that goes into making an Eames Lounge Chair means that purchasing one of these means you can pass it on to your children and they pass it on to theirs ……….. This Design Classic is meant too only get better with age.

Vitra Eames Lounge Chair & Ottoman - Design Classic
Vitra Eames Lounge Chair and Ottoman looking sublime as usual
Design Classics
VitraHaus 2013 – too many Design Classics to mention
Bestlite BL1 Table Light
This is the oldest light in the list, designed in 1930 and favoured by Winston Churchill the Bestlite BL1 table light is a true Design Classic. Bestlite recently introduced a new Brass version but for us the original chrome version is perfect. Watch a great video about Bestlite here.

Bestlie BL1 Light - design Classic
Bestlite BL1 light in a cool office

String – Black & Walnut system
Designed in 1949 by Nils Strinning the String system is so flexible and versatile it can work in any room in the home. The Cimmermann house includes String in Kitchen, Playroom and Bedroom – a perfect endorsement for the flexibility and design of String. Available in many colour combinations our favourite is the Walnut and Black, a warm mix of colours and materials. Will String furniture look as good and be an investment in 2014 – you bet it will, one of our favourite Design Classics.
String Shelving - Design Classic
String Shelving in Black and Walnut combination
String Shelving - Black & Walnut
String shelving – walnut detail

Modernica Bubble Light
The bubble light by George Nelson is available in many shapes and sizes but our favourite is the Bubble Ball Light. Originally designed in 1947 they look as good today as they did all that time ago when they were first produced. The simple shape makes them perfect to compliment any interior design scheme. These lamps with their simple sculptural shapes were constructed of an innovative taut plastic that coated a steel wire-frame. Nelson’s unique design and ingenious use of materials prove to eliminate glare and provide an abundant, yet diffused light. A quality which alone is unique to this material and has yet to be bettered. These famous lamps are part of the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

Modernica Bubble Light - Design Classic
Modernica Bubble lights, image courtesy of

Flos Arco LED
Achille Castiglioni’s stunning light now comes in a new LED version. Offering 2 different levels of brightness the LED light is both bright and warm, a revolution in LED lighting. You can’t go wrong with this Design Classic originally designed in 1962 this new version adds a technological advancement to an already iconic product.
Flos Arco LED - Design Classic
Sleek interior with Flos Arco LED light

Vitra DSW Chair
The iconic Eames DSW Chair is now available with Black or Dark Maple coloured legs, adding even more exciting possibilities. Vitra have also launched a new Shell colour – Basalt which is a beautiful warm grey colour which combines so well with the new leg colours. A true design classic that just got better.

Vitra Eames DSW Chair - a true Design Classic
Vitra Eames DSW Chair – a true Design Classic
Vitra Eames DSW
Vitra Eames DSW with new Dark Maple legs
Kartell Componibilli
Componibilli is an iconic storage range that is flexible, functional, practical and looks great in any room of the house or office. Componibilli has been produced now for over 40 years and is a real Design Classic by Kartell. With its innovative design it is on display in the Musuem of Modern Art in New York and the Pompidou Centre in Paris. Available in 4 different sizes and 4 different colours – White, Black, Red and Silver. The youngest Cimmermann family member has several in his playroom and Postman Pat loves sleeping in there!!!
Kartell Componibilli - Design Classic
Kartell Componibilli – so flexible and sleek, looks cool in white – image courtesy of Pinterest

Check out our Design Classics section and choose for yourself.

The team at Cimmermann

Credits & Links: