Ahead of London Design Festival we spoke to designer David Irwin, to find out more about the inspiration and ideas behind his work.

What was your dream job as a child?

I think the very first thing I wanted to be was a professional Lego builder!

What inspired you to become a designer?

I have always had a curiosity for how things are made and enjoyed creating things myself. I suppose the satisfaction I get from seeing an idea make the jump off paper and into reality is the reason I became a designer.

What is your favourite piece that you have designed for Case and what was the inspiration behind it?

It would have to be the Narin Folding Chair. I set out to design a folding chair that didn’t comprise on aesthetics or comfort in order for it to fold. I took inspiration from the constantly adapting nature of workshops, from the function and forms of trestles, folding A-frames and other temporary support structures.

 

Narin Folding Chair designed by David Irwin.

 

Describe your creative process…
Firstly, determining the key factors of the brief, researching the problem or requirement and then trying to come up with a resolved product that fits with the client’s brand.

 

What is your favourite piece of furniture, and why?

It’s hard to choose just one but I would say Chair no.4 by Jean Prouve. This chair demonstrates the two things I love most about Prouvé’s work—simplicity and functionality. What I particularly like about this chair is that it was born out of the requirements for durability.

Who is your favourite designer, and why?

I have always admired Hans Wegner and Jean Prouve, two designers with a deep knowledge and understanding of the materials they used. Prouve once said “never design anything that cannot be made,” this is a philosophy that I try to adhere to with my work. A more contemporary influence would be Jasper Morrison, I have always respected his approach to design, creating honest, almost humble objects.

 

Trove Boxes and Arca Wall Box designed by David Irwin. 

 

What is the highlight of your career?

I don’t think I’ve had it yet, I’m still learning and developing as a designer, so hopefully the best is yet to come. Maybe it’s the next piece I design for Case…

 

Tanso Outdoor Range designed by David Irwin.
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