"What's a geek?" asks Rolf Snoeren, crossing his legs defensively. "It's like a nerd," says Viktor Horsting, sounding slightly peeved. "Oh," responds Rolf. Dutch fashion designers Viktor & Rolf are miffed at a recent Time magazine article that announced: "The skinny, bespectacled, look-alike design team radiates more geek than glamour." But they shouldn’t let it get to them.

When Jean Nouvel won the competition to extend the Reina Sofia museum of modern art in Madrid, he realised that this was not an institution that needed iconic architecture to make up for a weak collection.

An avenue of zelkova trees inspired Japanese architect Hitoshi Abe's interior for a new French restaurant in Sendai, 400km north-east of Tokyo.

"Do you know about Mount Kenya? It's 17,000ft plus, and the top quarter of a mile is vertical rock. I'm the oldest man to have climbed that. I climbed it at 76. It nearly bloody killed me of exhaustion."

An exhibition in a Kyoto temple aims to present Dieter Rams as the Zen master of product design. But the mixture of clocks, lighters and religion is fatuous at best.

Only a wall keeps the village of St Lawrence on land and not in the sea. This wall traces the edges of the Blackwater Estuary, as it does the rest of the Essex coastline, defending for the time being a floodplain that, with rising sea levels, will one day have to be coloured in blue on the map. On the dry side the wall slopes off into a row of gardens, one of which belongs to the Salt House.

Brick Lane was the big story at this year's London Design Festival.