By Vicki Matranga, Design Programs Coordinator
Get to know the people behind the stylish, thought-provoking designs that will be exhibited in Discover Design. This series of conversations will give you a glimpse of the inspirations, influences and ideas that go into creating the exciting products that you’ll see at the 2013 International Home + Housewares Show.
We’re speaking with Stephan Koziol, owner of the company based in Erbach, Germany.
Since 1927 Koziol has been inventing, creating and producing top-quality products with unique designs for the home. Koziol’s colorful, whimsical home accessories and items for the kitchen and bath aim to make the world a happier place. Their products blend art, craftsmanship and sustainability to earn many international design awards. Recently their innovative UNPLUGGED coffeemaker won the prestigious red dot award.
The company’s corporate philosophy is displayed at its Glucksfabrik, or “Happiness Factory,” the Koziol brand design center and shop. Thousands of visitors per year witness how happiness can be produced sustainably – using simple processes, top materials and ethically sound manufacturing principles, all within a very limited area.
Stephan, where do you find inspiration when designing new products?
I find inspiration in art, but also in everyday life.
Are there any specific designers, places or eras that influence you?
I am influenced very strongly by marvelous landscape of our home region, the Odenwald.
How do you choose which idea to take to the next step — to product development?
A new product idea must fulfill three criteria: a) it needs to be compatible with our Koziol philosophy and appeal to us, b) we need to believe that the product will appeal to our customers, and c) we need to be technically capable of manufacturing the product.
How do you identify the key user audience for your products?
We leave it to people to decide themselves if they like a product and what they wish to use it for. We don’t define “key users” as such.
How do you see design’s importance in our industry as it moves forward?
Design is everything, but then it is such a complex term as we see it, since it also encompasses functionality, sustainability, durability, culture and art.
Where are your products manufactured?
Koziol products are not only developed in our Design Laboratory, but also technically produced there, and manufactured exclusively in Erbach in Germany.
How does Discover Design help to expand your brand?
Our design reflects our ideas on art and culture, and we hope that our philosophy will inspire many people all over the world.
Thank you, Stephan, for sharing your thoughts with us. We look forward to seeing your delightful items for the home in March. Be sure to visit Koziol in Booth S3477 at Discover Design to see their latest products. Learn more about the company by visiting www.koziol.de
Discover Design is the premier design destination at the International Home + Housewares Show. Located in the South Building, within the Dine + Design Expo, the invitation-only category features more than 100 exhibitors from around the world. Companies driven by innovation and inspired by design present distinctive products and collections in Tabletop, Gift, Textiles and Home Décor. Exhibitors are selected to participate by a panel of industry experts comprised of retailers, design journalists and peers. Some exhibitors appeared here last year and others are new to our Show. The Discover Design Gallery, accessible to buyers and media, features select products that are entries in the Global Innovation Award (gia) for Design. Learn more about Discover Design exhibitors and their products by checking Housewares Connect 365 at www.housewares.org