What is ‘good design’?
Richard Davonport | 11 April 2017
Design is a word we use a lot in the Davonport office and often we talk about design without even realising it. Whether it’s a design presentation, a discussion of the latest design trends or drilling down into the finest details of a kitchen design when it gets passed through to our workshops; design is everywhere around us, and we can’t help but become absorbed in it. So how do we distinguish what is ‘good or great design’ and how do we achieve it?
Design is sometimes thought of as an aesthetic, superficial notion – if it looks good, then it must be good design, right? Wrong. Of course, the visual impact of something should be beautiful and we certainly aim to present stunning kitchen designs to our clients. However, good design is so much more than skin deep. For example, think about the importance of ergonomics in a kitchen – no matter how much the aesthetics of the room appeal to you, if you have to constantly bend and stretch to make your way around the space then surely it can’t be good design. A good kitchen design considers the importance of ergonomics, taking into account the lifestyle and needs of the person or people using it, and factors this into the scheme.
On an equally practical level; a good design should be functional – this feels like the most obvious aspect to point out, but it’s also one of the most crucial. The importance of functionality in design leads us to the enormous importance of quality. Great design and quality are intrinsically linked - a product quite simply cannot be praised for its design if the quality is lacking. For example, a hand crafted dovetailed drawer box, created to perfectly fit into a bespoke drawer is the epitome of good design, largely thanks to its inherent quality.
So, we’ve explored the ideas that good or great design should look beautiful, function well, and be built to last, but there’s another aspect of good design that can be easily overlooked; connection on a personal level. A good design, be it a tailor made jacket or bespoke kitchen, should be designed to perfectly fit you and your lifestyle. A great design should enhance your lifestyle and evoke memories. This might sound over ambitious for the design of a kitchen, but in fact we frequently hear from our clients that their new kitchen has enabled more time to be spent together as a family, host dinner parties more often, or attempt new and ambitious recipes.
Great design is an amalgamation of many factors, and can be challenging to perfect, but it’s worth pursuing. When found it really does have the ability to enhance your life, especially in a room as important and influential as your kitchen.
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