GE’s New Micro-Kitchen Concepts

There seems to be ever growing interest in Small Living these days. Whether it’s due to pure necessity for tiny apartment dwellers and mobile home owners, a desire to live more sustainably, or for spiritual and health reasons; simple living is a distinct lifestyle.

As many people search for ways to de-stress, de-clutter (mentally & physically)  and move away from materialism they begin to practice mindful consumption.

Mindful Consumption: where you have everything you need and nothing you don’t. Mindful consumption restores balance in everyday life leading to less stress and better overall health.

For many Americans, the biggest turn-off from small-space living is the kitchen, or lack thereof. Fortunately, GE Appliances has chosen to tackle this challenge by creating “micro-kitchen concepts that help people maintain or enhance their lifestyle in substantially less square footage.”

GE Micro kitchen|KitchAnn Style

GE designers created the monoblock, a fully customizable standalone unit with cooking, cleaning, and refrigeration in a single standalone six-foot enclosure. It’s designed to blend seamlessly into the surrounding cabinetry, and is controlled by a digital panel integrated into the countertop edge.

The monoblock was recently shown at Dwell on Design in LA with a price tag of $15,000.

GE Monoblock kitchen|KitchAnn Style

A second concept presented by GE is a 24″ wide modular drawer system designed to give homeowners more freedom is selecting the appliances and components they need. All traditional kitchen appliances, including a microwave oven, conventional oven, convertible refrigerator and freezer, and dishwasher are drawer-based. The cooktop and downdraft system also are based on the 24″ modules. These units come ready to accept custom panels to fit any decor style.

GE Micro kitchen|KitchAnn Style

I saw the prototypes for the micro-kitchen when I was in Louisville at the Monogram Experience Center last fall. I wasn’t allowed to talk about it then but I’m happy to say I was really thrilled to see such forward thinking from GE.

These units of course don’t have to be limited to kitchens, they would be perfect for company break rooms, master suites and bars.

  “Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius – and a lot of courage – to move in the opposite direction.” – E.F. Schumacker

FirstBuild

GE  built their own microfactory production facility  on the University of Louisville (UofL) Belknap Campus, called FirstBuild that will allow them to produce their micro-kitchen concept in late 2014.

UofL, which owns the building where FirstBuild will be housed, will be much more involved than a typical landlord. UofL and GE Appliances have plans to create an Advanced Manufacturing hub where students can conduct research while getting practical training on the latest additive manufacturing and technologies in the micro-factory setting.

More than just a factory, with the launch of FirstBuild.com, GE has created a global community dedicated to conceiving, engineering and building the next generation of major appliances.

“The ability to simplify means to eliminate the unnecessary so that the necessary may speak.” – Hans Hofmann, Introduction to the Bootstrap, 1993

 

 

 

Kitchen Inspiration

It’s hard to believe the 4th is just around the corner. Here’s some red, white and blue kitchen inspiration. Which is your favorite?

Kitchen Inspiration | KitchAnn Style

This photo was style so well with the red tomatoes contrasting with the gorgeous deep blue cabinets.

Kitchen Inspiration | KitchAnn Style

This kitchen is super fun with the red SMEG refrigerator.

Modern Red Kitchen Inspiration | KitchAnn Style

This red back-painted glass splash really keeps this white kitchen from looking sterile.

Americana Kitchen Inspiration | KitchAnn Style

What’s not to love about this pale blue kitchen? The contrasting cabinet interior is a beautiful detail.

Americana banquette Inspiration | KitchAnn Style

I love kitchen banquettes and this one is complete with storage.

Kitchen Inspiration | KitchAnn Style

This Scavolini kitchen is bold and beautiful. Love the square pulls.

Red Kitchen Inspiration | KitchAnn Style

I love the countertop so much with the red cabinets, I’m going to overlook the drawer head mistake in the corner.

Blue Kitchen Inspiration | KitchAnn Style

This recycled glass top countertop from Vetrazzo is perfect for entertaining.

 

 

Electrolux Design Lab Competition

Each year Electrolux challenges design students all over the world to create a concept that is relevant to the time and raises questions about what design will be like in the future. Established in 2003, Electrolux Design Lab is a global design competition that is focused around themes such as healthy eating, sustainable living and internet generation. This year’s theme calls for Creating Healthy Homes under three focus areas; Culinary Enjoyment, Fabric Care and Air Purifying.

Electrolux Design Lab 2014 |Kitchen Studio Naples

Electrolux awards four prizes: 1st place is 5,000 Euros and a 6-month paid internship at an Electrolux global design center. A 2nd prize of 3,000 Euros, 3rd prize of 2,000 Euros and People’s Choice prize for 1,000 Euros are also on offer.

The competition received over 1,700 submissions from over 60 countries is now entering the second stage of the competition with 70 submissions moving forward. At this stage, contestants are asked to deliver rendered CAD-files of their concepts with a logo, contextual images and design details.

Starting tomorrow through June 28, the public can vote online for their favorite concept. The three most popular submissions in the public voting will make it directly to the next round.

You may vote for one concept only once, but you can vote for different concepts so it is ok to support more than one contestant and idea.

Explore Concepts

Tree of Life

Tree of Life| KitchAnn StyleReplacing the refrigerator, oven, dishwasher, and even the cook, the Tree of Life (TOL) is the brainchild of Bulgarian designer Zahari Ganchev.

Based on the shapes of a Beobab tree and a Ganoderma lucidum mushroom, the biomorphic Tree of Life stores your food in its trunk and cooks meals on its mushroom caps. Individual ingredients are drawn from their refrigerated, organic polymer pouches when you order up a dish. Lasers (lasers!) cut and clean the food before the appliance deposits them on ceramic-coated stainless steel plates and cooks them for you. Your nutritional intake is monitored every meal, and replacing your plate tells the cooking lasers (more lasers!) to clean it for you.

Halo Fuse

Halo fuse| KitchAnn StyleThe Halo Fuse is a rotating induction cooktop with the freedom of cooking anywhere on the surface and is designed to be located on an island work surface.  This concept was submitted by Ryan Gardner, a senior industrial design student at Kendall College of Art and Design.

Special pans with detachable handles are used with this concept so large meals with multiple pans can be easily accommodated. Temperature settings are selected through sliding electronic controls within the pot handle. The pans synch with the cooking surface so if you need to reposition it the same settings are kept.

Fortunately, there is also a touch screen interface located to the side of the cooktop to show the location and setting of each pan. This could be very handy for multiple chefs.

PureTowel

PureTowel |KitchAnn StyleIntended for bathroom use, the PureTowel replaces your standard towel hook with a Smart Hanger that can disinfect your towel in seconds with UV light. This clever concept comes from Leobardo Armenta, a 3rd year Industrial design student at Universidad Autonoma de Ciudad Juarez in Mexico.

Simply hang your used towel on the Smart Hanger and the vertical motion of the UV ring will start, leaving your towel dry and clean.

The towel is dried by a silent, high-speed fan located inside the ring and the UV light has sensors so human contact is avoided.

This concept is great for families concerned about allergies and passing germs that thrive on damp towels.

To explore the 35 entries and vote for our favorite, visit the Electrolux Design Lab site. Tell me which ones are your favorite.

 

Happy Father's Day

happy fathers day | Kitchen Studio of Naples

I wanted to pop in  for a sec – to give a shout out to all the dads on deck! Thanks, Dad for all that you’ve done over the years (especially the math homework) and helping to mold me into the person I am today.