When you’re thinking sleek and sexy materials, concrete probably isn’t the first thing that crosses your mind. High-density foam and corduroy–now those are some right sexy materials, amiright? Nonetheless, more experimentation to take concrete beyond the foundation and into fashion (??) should be happening… we think. IVANKA is a Budapest-based design studio and concrete factory doing just that, changing the cold connotation that clouds the mystique of concrete with products and projects that soften the slump.
IVANKA Studio and Concrete Works was formed in 2003 by Katalin Ivanka and Andras Ivanka. They collaborate with artists, designers, architects and engineers on projects and custom-order products. If you haven’t seen IVANKA’s wall panels, feast your eyes below.
That last one is the Orto Living Covering, with “moss growing in small gaps surviving among extreme circumstances.” I wouldn’t mind having those in my tea garden, *AHEM*, I mean robot battle arena. And the sound of concrete? Well, it never sounded/looked so beautiful as these speaker cabinets made entirely “of one single piece moulded concrete. There are no joints of panels except for the removable bottom plate. The wall thickness varies from 18mm to 30mm to ensure non-parallel walls on the inside thus minimising the effects of standing waves within the cabinet. A rigid bracing located at various places further strengthens the rigidity of the enclosure.”
And you probably don’t have to worry too much when your well-fed uncle dances atop them (again). Now, those are some products that concrete seems perfectly suitable for right? But purses? Clutch purses to be more exact. These you see here are simple cases with a calf leather exterior and a high-performance concrete flap, all elegantly held together with subtle stitching and a magnetic clasp. How does that sound?
Our favorites (and we don’t mind saying so) is the last one, the GENEZIS NR4/2. A perfect fit for the man who desires a more porous relationship with his wife or the woman who prefers the look of cement to conceal her lipstick and derringer. Unfortunately, the speakers and clutches are not for sale, but they do have some snazzy book ends and a Cement Textile Notebook available in their store.