The idea is a simple and effective one. Working with the element of surprise, Designerbox brings original, playful and affordable design to the home.
1-month subscription €39 p/m; 6-month subscription €33 p/m; 12-month subscription €29 p/m + shipping from €3.90
As well as subscribing you can also buy individual items direct from their website.
Further details here.
DesignerBox is a French company, though their website and emails also come in English. Just as well, my French is very rusty.
This is an interesting subscription to try out. Firstly, it is very different from anything else I’ve received; and secondly, their items are both beautiful and unusual. Our home is full of all manner of eclectic stuff, and both my husband Big C and I appreciate design.
DesignerBox works with designers from all over Europe to produce unique and aesthetically pleasing items for the home.
Designerbox used to put their items in numbered wooden boxes, but they seem to have stopped doing this. While the boxes were nice, it was sometimes difficult to know what to do with them, so I don’t mind they don’t do this any more.
Designerbox really hit the jackpot with last month’s beautiful bowl, so I was looking forward to seeing what they came up with this month.
The shipping box was unusually light and thin.
Their items are always beautifully packaged and presented.
On top you can see their magazine, Iconic News. It’s attractively produced and printed in both French and English.
Inside you can find information about this month’s artist/craftman, plus interesting content relating to the item, design, and production.
Given the size and weight of the box, I suspected this month’s item would be textile-related.
I could see it had been vacuum packed, which would make sense as it would reduce the size.
I wasn’t quite sure about the fabric, though.
Then I realised I’d been looking at the back of the cushion. This was the front.
When I removed the plastic wrap it sprang into shape.
The fabric is pure linen, and its texture is both slightly rough and smooth. The colour is contrasting dark and light brown, and pattern is classic houndstooth check woven into the fabric. The back of the cushion is a plain weave in a mid-brown.
In the magazine there is a short article on the houndstooth check pattern.
Did you know that in French, houndstooth is called pied de poule? Which literally means foot of chicken! I think that’s a pretty apt description, even though the images it conjures aren’t quite as benign as houndstooth!
On the bottom right of the cushion is the label of the designer. It is discreet, but the it adds interest to the visual effect without being intrusive.
There is a narrow gold edging all the way around the cushion. This gives a subtle but distinctive interest to the overall look.
The cushion itself is a relatively small size, approximately 20cm x 40cm.
There was also a bonus item in the bottom of the box, a photo print.
This is called À La Plage avec Paris-Telex. I understand from the magazine that Paris-Telex is the agency that produces the magazine, Iconic News.
As far as I can tell from the magazine there were three possible cushions you could receive.
Our living room is decorated and furnished quite neutrally, but has colour and detail from our hundreds of books, many pictures, and various ornaments and accessories.
At first I was slightly disappointed because the other two cushions (see the first picture of the magazine interior) seemed to be much more colourful and whimsical. Our other cushions are relatively large and brightly coloured. The earthy-toned traditional houndstooth check of this cushion is an attractive and classic design, but I was concerned it would fade into the background on our brown leather couch.
Having tried it out, however, it actually looks very good. Even the small size doesn’t matter, and the houndstooth pattern provides both visual and tactile interest.
It doesn’t get lost among our other (larger and brighter) cushions, and actually provides pleasing visual variety to our couch.
As to the print, it’s OK, but it’s not something we’d put on the wall. But as it’s not the focus of this month’s box it doesn’t matter.
I like this cushion very much. From feeling mildly unenthusiastic it grew on me quite quickly.
The quality of the fabric is extremely good. Even though it’s not exactly smooth, it is very pleasant to the touch. It is also functional, which is extremely important to me. I love beautiful things, but I’m not so keen on ‘things’ which have no practical use. Not because I wouldn’t like to have a home scattered with interesting objets, but because we simply don’t have space for many of them.
This is a lovely addition to our home, and my husband and I are both very pleased with it.
NB: a different version of this review first appeared on allsubscriptionboxes.co.uk