Monday, 27 January 2014

 I N   S E A R C H   O F  G O O D   D E S I G N

Text: Hina Nitesh

What is good design? 
This is an oft asked question which can be answered 
best by the user but what cannot be contested is the fact that 
the designer has to be sensitive and the design simple…  

The post that follows holds a special place in my heart. The two designers who I am going to talk about are known to me personally since they were my juniors at the design school. But this isn’t the only reason. Through their firm the architect and product designer duo is able to contribute to the society – which is often a forgotten aspect of good design(er). 

From lifestyle to regular use - furniture for all

Design Circle, the firm set up by Ritu and Murali, focuses on products made from timber. The wood that they use is either reclaimed or recycled or reused or repurposed which makes their products eco friendly. The products themselves are characterised by simple forms, beautiful workmanship, focus on detailing and honesty in use of material.  

Before and After
Focus on details

They are inclined towards crafts and it has a very strong influence in their work. This does not mean that their products look traditional on the contrary they are contemporary not just in their looks but also their functions. I mean would you have thought of a product which can become a stand to display your tablet? Well they have….

The W- stand

Designing accessories

They say learning never ends. Designers at Design Circle sure believe in this. There is a lot of stress on doing things themselves so the designers get down from their drawing boards to put realize the paper drawing into a three dimensional usable product. The range of products from the firm includes furniture, lamps, toys etc. 

Simple forms and interesting designs for children
Making studies fun...
They have also designed institutional libraries focusing both on the function and the aesthetics. 

Exploring forms in wood

Exquisite workmanship and detailing

 The firm conducts regular workshops to help participants get in touch with their creative side and to let them experience the joy of doing things all by themselves.  A look at the smiles on the faces of participants leaves no doubt about the success of the event…

Children at a workshop - learning to make their own toy
 Professor Bhandari in design school introduced us to phrases like ‘sincere and detailed’ and ‘child-like’, when talking about ‘good’ design. Looking at Design Circle’s extensive portfolio, his words start echoing in my head and I tell myself ‘yes, this is indeed what good design should aim to be.’

You can get to know more about the designers and their works at You could also write to them at
 All images are copyright Design Circle.