Together again

Pierre Leon Forte



by Pierre Léonforte

Togetherness. In isolation. The perfect conundrum to put forward to first-year philosophy students. And a burning hot conversation piece, to be handled with more care than a cake tin right out of the oven. Do we have it? The courage to rebuild everything that was wrecked in a matter of minutes on that fateful Saturday evening back in March. The courage to go back to the grind with so many question marks on the horizon, pushing some of us to lose our temper — and rightly so. No one knows when. No one knows how. No one knows how much. No one knows with whom.

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Kiosk is pleased to introduce its lifestyle barometer, which presents data highlights from the design, decoration, gastronomy and tourism sectors every month.

Thanks to social listening and 14 Septembre’s sector expertise, the Kiosk barometer provides quantitative and qualitative insights into these key sectors.

Check in with the Kiosk barometer to get updates on the major topics of conversation, who’s who on social media, and the key figures for this month.

More information


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Sauve Ton Hotel
(*Save your hotel)

14 Septembre is happy to partner with Save your hotel, a solidarity initiative created by Kevin Machefert, Director of Sales and Marketing at Machefert Group, which brings together more than 130 hotels to support the French hotel industry.  

In the context of this crisis, hotel owners have come up with a  new solution: a collection of exclusive and original offers gathered together on one platform: Save your hotel.

No need for go-between agencies, the available offers have all been redesigned and adapted to the new health constraints. Check out these offers below:

• Stay in a suite facing the sea, for the price of a standard room
• Sip a cocktail facing the Eiffel Tower, without having to pack your bags the next day
• Stay with your family in a new-to-the-market  desirable property
• Enjoy a voucher for  the restaurant of a luxury guest house
• Save your honeymoon and escape to an exceptional French property where the on-site team service will cater for your every need, in recognition of having been booked directly.

Discover these deals through participating hotels including: OKKO hotels, Maison Albar hotels, Indwood hotels … and more.

THOUGHTS ON: the gift of giving

FAUCHON have teamed up with the start-up delivery service BABA AU RUN. Via a contest on Instagram, the two companies are offering those self-isolating alone a chance to satisfy their sweet tooth. Winners received fine confectionery delivered straight to their doorstep.

EATALY PARIS have tasked their chefs with cooking up meals five days a week for caregivers at the Bichat-Claude Bernard Hospital in Paris.

25HOURS HOTEL in Berlin have been showing their solidarity through heart-shaped light installations on two of their buildings, visible to everyone at night.


COVID VERSION of 'La Isla' by Note Design Studio for Sancal

"As we wait more, we continually find ourselves in different waiting areas – vast seas of inhospitable and unwelcoming space that Marc Augué has dubbed “non-places”. 
Sancal asked us to provide some relief for weary waiters. We came up with La Isla as a solution. Its seductive curves, soft upholstery and transparent partitions call out to all those navigating a lobby, desperately seeking refuge. A place to share with strangers while respecting their privacy; isolated but not excluded."

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The key to helping the most affected farmers find solutions to the "collapse" of their markets ? Creativity and solidarity. Cooperatives are setting up web platforms where people can buy  food from a specific region, such as, "produits-locaux" in Brittany. Brexit or not, the United Kingdom is calling out to students, the unemployed, and seasonal workers from Europe to save lettuce, asparagus and strawberries. In France, more than 150,000 city dwellers made themselves available in a few days to make up for the lack of labor in the fields.
Unable to stop their buffalo milking,  local farmers in the Italian region of  "Campanie" who usually produce large amounts of mozzarella have  found a new use for their milk so as to avoid throwing everything away. They transform it into “Caciocavallo”, cheese normally made from cow's milk.  They then create "cacio-bonds" in order to sell it. The buyers will receive their products after the crisis, when the cheese will be aged enough.

Copyrights: Photo by Lewis Fagg on Unsplash

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The Future of UK Restaurants

In the first of a four-part video series, supported by Arla Pro, Hawksmoor co-founder Will Beckett and D&D London CEO Des Gunewardena discuss the restaurant world post lockdown.

  • What are the biggest concerns for restaurants and the hospitality sector in a post lockdown world?
  • Can the hospitality sector survive with restrictive social distancing measures?
  • What long-term impact will the coronavirus have on the restaurant industry as a whole?

These are the key questions the guests will try to answer in these episodes.

Watch the first episode here.


COVID VERSION of Confident originally designed by Philippe Nigro for Ligne Roset, revisited here by Patrick Jouin

It’s  interesting to see another take on the Confident armchair, interpreted by a different designer.  This version of the armchair structure is much higher to make it safer. Which also creates a more intimate setting for an incognito chat…


COVID VERSION of Confident by Philippe Nigro for Ligne Roset 

Philippe Nigro has come up with two new versions of his Confident armchair. One almost feels like a confessional with its high panels.  For the other  the distance between the two seats of the armchair is much longer than in the original design, making cozy conversations possible whilst still  respecting social distancing rules.

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?KIOSK! BAROMETER: Buying local is on the up - YUM! 

Since Covid started, we’ve noticed the rise of “buying local” on social platforms, a clear consequence of the COVID-19 crisis. French consumers (as well as British and Italian) consider  buying local to have real value, even more than buying Bio/Vegan/Organic. Whilst this may have happened for practical reasons (take a look at local initiatives in practice and find out more in our CSR article about Foodanthropy “XXXX”  ….), it is also very emotional and there’s a noticeable rise of that patriotic feeling when it comes to shopping. It also shed light on farmers and on more direct supply chains. Will it last long? We'll keep monitoring for you. Stay tuned.

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Copyrights: Rebecca Mitchell Illustration


THOUGHTS ON: lockdown wellbeing

Renowned Danish consumer electronics company BANG & OLUFSEN have scheduled online performances during the lockdown. These include live concerts, immersive stories and podcasts. You can follow the uploads here.

BANG & OLUFSEN presented Music Matters during the lockdown: a series of live online performances, sharing intimate moments with a selection of artists working across genres and approaches, united in the communal and celebratory power of music. You can experience the first three performances by Benjamin Koppel, Oh Land and Calby on the Bang & Olufsen YouTube channel. Stay tuned for the next one on Saturday 23 of May!

Lockdowns have caused a sudden shift toward a more sedentary lifestyle for many people, so CHAMPION SPIRIT PARIS have encouraged their followers at home to stay active by posting online workout regimes on their YouTube and Instagram accounts.

British architecture studio FOSTER + PARTNERS have created a series of architecture challenges to keep children entertained during the  endless hours spent at home. The challenges called #architecture from home, include building a paper skyscraper and creating an entire city, among others.

Together again - No authorSOLIDarity


It’s so great to see reptilian (reflexes), limbic (emotions) and cortex (reasoning) minds working together to achieve harmonious results -  including actual harmonies  - and solidarity initiatives of all kinds across Europe. We’ve lost track of the ever growing number of 3D printed masks given or made freely available (including the infamous EasyBreathe from Décathlon), the meals delivered to nursing staff, the innovative ways of managing the health emergency such as these containers transformed into intensive care capsules in Milan (CURA), or the countless Design initiatives listed on Instagram using #DesignResistenza…  Solidarity has surged thanks to the power of the internet, which has brought platforms together to help those most in need (Covid 19 Mutual Aid UK platform, Help the Hungry by Damien Hirst ...) but also professionals affected by the crisis, in particular restaurants (for example Sauve ton resto) or agriculture (PourDebon which offers organic products via local distribution networks) ... A solidarity pandemic.

Copyrights: Photo by Tim Mossholder on Unsplash

Together again - No authorSIMONE BONANNI

COVID VERSION of Hana Armchair by Simone Bonanni

'I thought of a modification of the Hana Armchair, that I designed for Moooi, in which mechanical arms with shelves emerge from the base to facilitate smartworking.' Simone Bonanni

THOUGHTS ON: a social future

London-based designer PAUL COCKSEDGE has designed a blanket called Here Comes the Sun, which will allow people to socialise together at a safe distance after Covid-19 lockdown restrictions have been lifted. Read more here.

In the same style, a Milan based design studio SBGA Blengini Ghirardelli designed C'entro - a fibreglass frame to help people maintain social distance in parks. Read more here.

London based designers CHILD STUDIO have collaborated with skincare brand Plenaire and designed the perfect holiday from home. Imagined as  a ‘hideaway for the lockdown world’, the project called Casa Plenaire can be discovered on Child Studio’s instagram page thanks to inspirational 3D renderings. A virtual alternative in the time of lockdown…

MILAN CITY called on Architects and designers to design social distancing devices such as spacers and signs, as well as layouts for both indoors and outdoors. Everyone is invited to submit ideas, which will then be gathered into a catalogue for Milanese traders to consult and find solutions for their situations. Read more here.


COVID VERSION of the floor lamp ‘Sole Moi’ by Mathilde Bretillot

These floor lamps have been redesigned to offer a translucent shelter which is both luminous and safe. The caption ‘View of the sky from a bright shelter’  provides a clear yet poetic interpretation of Bretillot’s intention for this new design.


Chantal Hamaide designer friends to design mask: stunning result! 


How did you come up with this idea?

Ron Arad published a mask on his Instagram he made in aid of NHSsmiles, a campaign launched with Faire Share in the UK to bring a little humour to such a serious context. Thanks to this, I immediately thought of calling on international designers to create, divert and interpret mask concepts seriously, with humour and empathy.


The design community responded positively, have you been surprised?

Support for the project was immediate. I received a great amount of feedback and responses, all very different and creative. I was really aiming to illustrate the scale of the pandemic throughout the world so for each one I indicated the designer’s country and city of origin. 


Your favourite?

I have no favourite! I compiled my list of designers to contact and the initiative fits everyone's work.


Chantal, what's next?

It has been a very rewarding experience. I might follow up on this project in the form of a publication in aid of Research.This situation also highlights the need to involve designers more often when it comes to social issues.


Check them out here

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OUR Planet.

The economic crisis caused by COVID has had a huge impact on companies. MEDEF and AFP are now asking governments to suspend certain imposed environmental standards, as this slows recovery and growth. However, it’s quite the opposite: CSR has proven to be a source of leverage for economic & social performance. In France, NOUS SOMMES DEMAIN  - a collective of 400,000 companies  - are rallying for state aid to be given in priority to companies that make ecological and social commitments. And the British, who chair the Petersberg Climate Dialogue (a meeting of 30 countries held before the COP) have declared: Tackling climate change must be woven into the solution to the Covid-19 economic crisis. A philosophy shared by the leader of IMF.  An international "Green New Deal" is also supported by great economists committed to the economic opportunities it would open up. A more virtuous, fairer world, which would not advocate growth at the cost of our planet whose resources are running out. In short: a perfect example of “better living together”!



COVID VERSION of ‘Shadow’ Chair by Christian Ghion for Cappellini

The covid version of the Shadow chair features a translucent structure above the recliner creating a safety bubble for its future users... You can either leave it open if there is no immediate risk or decide to close if the social distancing gets difficult to respect!

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?KIOSK! BAROMETER: Escaping next door

In the aftermath of lockdown, laws and rules (100km max travelling distance) are pushing the population to turn to discovering or re-discovering local regions differently… (less scary,  fewer people ...) Long live the mountains and the countryside!

As an example, check out some of the top influencers - travel specialists - who are sharing their most inspiring discoveries: 

More information

Copyrights: Rebecca Mitchell Illustration


COVID VERSION of 'Living in a chair' by Federico Peri 

‘Living in a chair’ was designed thinking of a moment of meditation, of relaxation, something that temporarily isolated us from the world to dedicate time to ourselves, the context in which we find ourselves - forcibly - today. ‘If I had designed it these days I would certainly have introduced a dividing element in glass and metal that can act as a protective separation and, at the same time, can make the complement usable in company ... separate but united!’ Federico Peri


COVID VERSION of ‘ Animali Domesticki’ by Jean Sébastien Poncet

Simply constructed, the ‘Animali Domesticki’ collection of animals has long been able to open up the imagination.  However, the covid version has a clearer message : be happy whatever the context, take a leap despite Covid-19!


The future of eating out, together.

by Patrick Jouin & Alain Ducasse

Together, Designer Patrick Jouin and chef Alain Ducasse have worked on social distancing solutions for restaurant staff and customers. Last month,  they presented Jouin's drawings at a meeting with French President Emmanuel Macron and other key players in the hospitality industry.

Patrick Jouin believes that for restaurants, the  biggest challenge will be to keep the soul of a  place whilst installing the barriers needed to win back customers' trust. One of the main idea is to set up mobile and translucent table screens: respecting the dimensions imposed by health authorities, inexpensive, easy to use and recyclable (as they may require an upsurge in the use of plastic)  

The number of clients authorised will depend on the room size and could vary as the pandemic evolves. The project also includes ideas such as: welcoming guests with hydroalcoholic solution, using  a side table for serving, disposable menus and other new service gestures that could be initiated by chefs and restaurant owners. 

How air is treated in confined spaces - such as restaurants - is also an essential matter that the pair plan to address with  the help of scientists and ventilation specialists…
For now, these are all ideas but the hope is that they  may become real solutions,  enabling us to once again enjoy a night out at a restaurant...

  • Design X lifeDesign X life
  • Le mobilier nationalLe mobilier national

THOUGHTS ON: Design initiatives 

DESIGN FOR LIFE is a charitable initiative run by THE ART DESIGN LAB for the benefit of Parisian hospitals. It brings together a hundred designers who will donate their sketches to raise funds for caregivers fighting the Covid-19 pandemic. The fundraiser will take place online til May 31, and will contribute 100% of proceeds to the cause.

Known for their historical role of conserving furniture and curating modern collections, MOBILIER NATIONAL have pledged €500,000 to support the art and design trade in France by aiding its post-pandemic recovery. This will support designers by commissioning new works to be integrated into the agency’s collections. The initiative comes after the agency delivered 8,000 masks to hospitals across France, and announced it would organise an auction of its collections, the profits of which will be donated to the Fondation Hôpitaux de Paris - Hôpitaux de France.

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COVID inspiration: from line of sight to mask

Creativity definitively came out of the lockdown and will probably continue to!
Wallpaper* magazine had the great idea of asking some international fashion designers to draw by hand what they could see from their desk while working from home. From Pierre Hardy to Manolo Blahnik, Wallpaper* invites you to discover an inspirational capsule of art during lockdown. Read the full article here.

THOUGHTS ON: The future of real estate with the "Atypical conversations" 

Espaces Atypiques, a real estate network specializing in atypical properties, is  creating a series of informal talks about changes brought about by the pandemic in the real estate sector, through the series "Conversations Atypiques". 

Short video clips see experts, architects, sociologists and journalists reflecting on the impact of confinement, or the pandemic on buying patterns, living together choices...

As part of the first episode entitled “L'Habitat”, founder and manager of Espaces Atypiques, Julien Haussy, will welcome the architect and TV host Gaëlle Cuisy from  GplusK Architects, and the decorator and TV columnist Jessica Venancio. The two professionals discussed our relationship with interiors in the time of confinement and how housing is evolving to favour modular spaces.

This first episode is available here. Two other conversations, entitled “Le Vivre Ensemble” and “L’Avenir de la Profession” are scheduled for June and July.

Together again - No authorCorriere Della Sera

President, Salone del Mobile

Due to open on April 21, the 59th edition of the International Furniture Fair was first postponed and then cancelled because of the Coronavirus breakout.
Claudio Luti discusses the current situation: the immediate consequences for the Fair, its exhibitors, and the impact on Italy as a whole. He also reflects on the future,  both as a businessman in the design sector and as President of  Salone.

Salone del Mobile will return in 2021 to celebrate the 60th edition with a unique and extraordinary offer (whilst respecting new social behaviour guidelines).

Source: Corriere della Sera - 20 April 2020

Together again - No authorVITRA

FIRST DAY back to the office?

Don’t know where to start when it comes to new social distancing measures at work? Vitra has it covered!   The brand has created an e-paper gathering key insights and solutions to help stop the further spread of COVID-19 in the workplace. 

Thanks to Vitra’s long-standing knowledge of the work environment, back to work can be planned more easily thanks to easy-to-use spatial solutions. From corona-proof open-plan offices to easy-to-clean surfaces, everything is successfully detailed and illustrated! 

Download the e-paper here.

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?KIOSK! BAROMETER: Can design save us?

Designers from around the world have seized the moment and take action  since the beginning of the COVI-19 crisis. They play an important role  in designing the way we live our lives in this   “new normal period”,taking into account  new constraints and norms imposed by social distancing. During or after lockdown, public places, offices, furniture have to be adapted.  

This has been a topic of increasing interest on social platforms.. entions of “design+covid” have gone through the roof in March and April, proving that insight from designers is eagerly awaited and that they have a crucial role to play.

On a more domestic level, let’s not forget  the huge interest in decoration / home styling  /cocooning,  with + 726%  more research for these pins on Pinterest.

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