Design – The whole story

Design – The whole story

On the occasion of World Book Day, we would like to present you the publication “The whole story” by Elizabeth Wilhide. It was first published in German by DuMont Verlag in 2017. The book provides a comprehensive overview of the world’s most important events, movements and designers that have shaped our lives and aesthetic sensibilities from the dawn of industrial production to the presen

We rendezvous with design everywhere in everyday life

“Design – The whole story” portrays the world of design through the changes of time, technology and taste. It shows how often we cross paths with design in our everyday lives – be it in articles of daily use, furniture and packaging or in the field of car, textile and graphic designs through to the formless, but omnipresent Internet. Good design and clever innovations make everyday life easier for us. The functionality of things skilfully blends with the aesthetics and renders creative solutions to our problems. Design can also anticipate unprecedented needs at the same time. Creativity is therefore the heart of true innovation potential. And outstanding design has forevermore been consistent with this principle, which helps us make everyday life not only easier, but also more beautiful at the same time.


Design classics from the past to present

Design begegnet uns ueberall im Alltag
The author Elizabeth Wilhide presents selected works and design classics. These were ground-breaking for certain developments or approaches and continue to shape our understanding of design until today. The examples presented in the book are discussed in detail and are rooted in their historical, technical, economic and theoretical context. With numerous photos and background information on the most important events in design history, the publication shows how diverse developments in design are – including the Porte Dauphine metro entrance in Paris from 1900 by Hector Guimard, the perfume bottle of Chanel No. 5 from 1921, the blender model K from KitchenAid from 1937, the first SLR cameras from Rollei in 1932 and the New VW Beetle from 1998 (header image).


Metro entrance Porte Dauphine, 1900

Metroeingang Porte Dauphine

Paris metro entrance Porte Dauphine, designed by Hector Guimard at the World Fair in 1900, symbolised the upgrading of the Paris metro system. The World Fair was where mainly French accomplishments in the arts, industry and science were presented in order to demonstrate progress in transportation. Hector Guimard won the competition with his idea for the station entrance. Two iron props shaped like flower stems flank the cast-iron frame construction of the fan-shaped glass canopy in the entrance, which stands tall to this day. Guimard’s metro station entrances became a lasting embodiment of the turn of the century style.


Perfume bottle Chanel No. 5, 1921

The perfume Chanel No. 5 velvet bottle ranks amongst one of the popular perfume classics. It came to be the first fragrance for women on the market from the French fashion house Chanel. The perfume bottle is a classic example of modern design with its charm and significance still intact. The artful conception was designed by Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel in the avantgarde style of the jazz era. Her source of inspiration remains a mystery till date. The book highlights a few approaches.


Blender KitchenAid Model K, 1937

Standmixer KitchenAid Modell K 1937
The KitchenAid brand, owned by the Hobart Manufacturing Company in Ohio, began developing food processors back in 1914. The first consumer model conquered the market in 1920, though it was only minimally successful. Only the blender model K, developed in 1937 by Egmont Arens, became a bestseller and advanced to become a design classic. The crucial factors being its light weight and the exchangeable components. Until today, the KitchenAid components are compatible with the old 1937 model.

Design – The whole story


If you are interested in knowing more about the annual developments and innovations in the field of product design, we recommend the Red Dot Design Yearbooks to you. The practical yearbook set comprises four individual volumes – Living, Doing, Working and Enjoying. The yearbooks of this year’s design competition will be published on July 3, 2018. You can pre-order the set already today.

Posted on 23.04.2018

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