words Johanna Agerman
“I’d like my pieces to be like your favorite blanket. They always welcome you and make you warm,” says Naoko Kanehira, a graduate of the Bucks Contemporary furniture design course and winner of New Designers Habitat Awards which icon helps to judge.
There is an intimate air about her pieces and a flexibility that is appealing and inviting. “We liked Naoko’s playful and original ideas, particularly a deceptive sofa concept that encourages relaxed abandon,” explained the panel of judges. “She has a versatile and consistently strong body of work.” The prize includes a three-month work placement with Habitat’s design team.
Kanehira’s designs are wonderfully graceful while remaining functional. Her work, on show at New Designers this week, comprises the Lazy Rug, Bird Hooks, Cushion Sofa and Cushion Stool.