Italian Francesca Lanzavecchia & Singaporean Hunn Wai
To commemorate Singaporean furniture retailer – Journey East
‘s 20th anniversary, the award-winning design studio, Lanzavecchia+Wai has launched PLAYplay, a bold and colorful furniture collection. In addition, what makes this collaboration so significant is the fact that this also marks Journey East
‘s first attempt at producing its own designs. In actuality, such a designed-in-Singapore furniture selection represents a breath of fresh air in a market saturated with foreign brands.
Pong dining table & Ping benches
The ingenuity of the design duo, Italian Francesca Lanzavecchia and Singaporean Hunn Wai, shone through with this quirky furniture line up; playful ping-pong dining table with a hidden sliding drawer and wheelbarrow-style benches , stackable hamburger inspired side pieces and lenticular console which is decked out in a spectrum of color tones. Furthermore, PLAYplay multi-functional nature also appeals to families who seek to maximize their compact living spaces.
Hamburger side tables
Drawing influence from South East Asia’s complex varietal of rich culture, colors and flavors, PLAYplay’s heritage tinged pieces are unique and inspirational. Vibrant colors are reminiscent of Bras Basah HDB flats and the use of Indonesian Mahogany pays homage to our childhood and collective memory.
We managed to get the dynamic team to share their thoughts on this fun-loving collection.
1. What is the main inspiration behind the PLAYplay collection?
Bringing together a confluence of inspirations, PLAYplay is distilled from the personality of Journey East, and skilfully brought to life by award-winning design duo Lanzavecchia + Wai.
The spirit of play forms the driving narrative behind the collection, each piece consciously representing the young-minded positivity of a life filled with fun. This forward-looking energy is seamlessly juxtaposed with a touch of retro design influence: a homage to the 20-year heritage of Journey East as curator and restorer of rare vintage furniture.
We were also inspired by the envisioned lifestyles, from our user research, of the buyers and users of the PLAYplay collection. How will people live around and with the pieces in their homes? Would they like to entertain friends at home? How can, for example, a coffee table support that?
Other main points of inspiration come from the South East Asia we know and love; its colours (batik, kueh-kueh, fluorescent neon signs, our colourful HDB blocks…) its archetypes and materiality (we used Indonesian Mahogany, specific to our parts, a reddish-warm material of our childhood and of vintage pieces).
2. What is the design and thought process that went into the PLAYplay project?
Our design and thought process is essentially driven by information, research and insights. Design is decision-making process hence information; from emotionally abstract to market strategic, is critical to make as-informed-as-possible decisions to push the project forward in the best way possible. Clear and transparent communication with Terence and Anita of Journey East enabled and evolved the project to where it needed to go. They are completely committed to their brand and what they stand for, with being the business for 20 years as testament to their enterprise and customer-base, and it is with this same intensity of energy that was flowing through the PLAYplay project.
3. Which is your favorite piece of furniture in the PLAYplay collection and why?
That’s a tough question! It is like asking which is our favourite child! But we’re partial to the PONG table-tennis dining table as it is probably the most Playful of the collection; playing on the dining table is actually encouraged! The ACCORDION console is a piece we are proud of too, the colour-changing front really works well as you walk past it.
4. What is the message that LANZAVECCHIA + WAI & JOURNEY EAST tries to convey in this PLAYplay collection?
That it is possible to have fun and be playful in our living spaces, that we can all have a bit of lightness and pop that we can not only express ourselves with, but also to comfortably and sensitively live with and support our lives.
5. What is the color that you would use to describe the collaboration experience between LANZAVECCHIA + WAI and JOURNEY EAST and why?
Orange. It is energetic, young-at-heart, playful, joyful and embodies optimism for now and the future.
Journey East journeyeast.com
Lanzavecchia + Wai lanzavecchia-wai.com