We love the futuristic look as much as the next guy—probably a good deal more, actually—but we have to draw the line. And we draw it at a substance called acrylic, also known as plexiglass.
This table from Spectrum West is probably astonishingly easy to clean, but at some point you’re going to want to own something that doesn’t smell like Windex. It’s great if you’re making a movie about a dystopic future, but anyone who has it in their living room is probably way too intense to interact with.
People tend not to talk about it outside of design school, but there’s a symmetry between the way things look and the way we use them. Some chairs want you to relax, but others want you to pay attention. Some tables look like they want coffee cups but others want laptops.
This one, on the other hand, looks like it’s ready to design a skyscraper for you. We haven’t been much impressed by Muji, but after this, we’re coming around.
A table is a fairly simple object—often just a board with legs—so it’s nice when the parts have a story to them. This Darjeeling Table from CB2 takes the current yen for reclaimed wood a few steps farther, sourcing its saal wood from Indian railroad cars. (Yes, Mr. Anderson, the same as in the movie.)
Combining vintage materials with modern construction is a good idea, and only a few pull it off this well. Here’s hoping they don’t run out of railroad cars.