All I Want for Christmas / Peter Marigold
Anton Mikkonen, 'Udon' stool, 2020
PETER MARIGOLD IS a prolific, thoughtful and multifarious British designer who has worked with clients as diverse as Paul Smith, Fendi, Sony, Gallery Libby Sellers, and Dutch trend-forecaster Li Edelkoort. In 2009 he won the Designer of the Future Award at Design Miami. He is known equally for austerely beautiful cabinets and shelving in a variety of materials and his invention of FORMcard, a pocket sized card of meltable bio-plastic which can be used to mend and make countless household tools and objects. He jumped at the chance to claim an ‘Udon’ stool.
Which collectible design object would you like Father Christmas to bring you?
I’ve chosen a quirky piece by one of my graduates from London Metropolitan University from last year – the deliciously named ‘Udon’ stool by Anton Mikonen.
Why this object?
I like this piece for a number of reasons. It was a very clever response to a brief that we set to design an affordable piece of furniture that fits in a box for the company SCP who we partnered with. Anton developed the ‘Udon’ stool to produce a simple quick – and therefore relatively inexpensive – CNC cut timber seat that gives the impression of being more time consuming, and expensive, than it is. Just two passes with a very large oval cutter gives the bulbous, luxurious appearance of the snaking fat noodles after which it’s named. It’s won several awards and I’m badgering companies to produce it as it’s well-loved already!
I chose to exhibit the piece during the London Design Festival in September along with many other works by my graduates, and it’s sat bubble wrapped in my studio ever since due to all the craziness. It reminds me of a happy highlight in amongst all the shuttered exhibitions that were happening wherever you looked. I never ever buy design pieces, my flat is way too small and chaotic to do them justice, but I’ve asked Anton twice for the price on this piece, so logically Santa should drop it off for me. I really don’t know where I’d put it though!
Which table will you be sitting round on Christmas day?
Well. Where do we start. The bubble’s popped so here we are.
This is my kitchen table. It’s a raw, candid, slightly sad photo maybe and I’ve cropped it to take out too much that shames me, but I thought it says a lot about what’s happened in 2020.
As with many people who live in small spaces with their families, our kitchen table has now become a battered multi-functional work-horse. 20,000 meals have been eaten here alongside it being used as an office desk when the kids are at school (formica is very nice to write memos on) an art table (the dripping dinosaur green acrylic paint splattered on the wall, courtesy of my youngest) and a cooking surface (rock-solid dough stuck to the legs that maybe one day I will smash off if visitors are allowed here again). There is a drawer full of the most painfully unrelated collections of things that won’t find a home anywhere else in the already jumbled flat that I will never be able to figure out.
I think the table came from a small village in Italy where my great aunt came from, and I put the glaring yellow top on in a moment of weakness years ago, cutting it flat on one side and with rounded corners on the other – it makes it asymmetrical, so the table works in the cramped space. Maybe there’s a furniture design there one day? Not in bright yellow as it tends to hurt your eyes after a while.
My eldest son is quite into cooking, so to fit the weirdness of this year’s Christmas, we are going to make a few Caribbean vegan dishes from a book I got my partner last year which will be eaten here, or maybe in the park wearing party hats?
HAPPY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE!!!!