Despite the seemingly subjective nature of design, there seems to be one thing that most people can agree upon- Dutch design is good design. Product after product, Dutch designers continue to wow us with designs that are not only functional, but clever, funny, oddly nostalgic, at times tongue-in-cheek, and most importantly, engaging. Their products possess a certain unidentifiable quality that make them identifiably Dutch.
Most notably, the Dutch design cooperative Droog Design is comprised of a loosely knit group of designers whose products are unique yet unified in their combination of new innovations and an embedded sense of nostalgia, comfort, and sentimentality few others have achieved. Many people could be tempted to note the use of found or recycled material in Tejo Remy’s Chest of Drawers (shown above) and immediately label them “sustainable design”.
But upon closer inspection, it becomes evident that the Dutch designers have written their own, more human-centered manifesto, one that speaks to sustainability but redefines it using a new vocabulary that subscribes more to user engagement than materiality, and favors clever sentimentality over the cutting-edge.