Design inspiration can often come from strange places, and with the introduction of up-cycling there are often some unusual ways of creating design.
I’m sure that many people have been watching the Great Interior Design Challenge on BBC2 recently. One of the winners in the first round incorporated the clients’ love of the Tour De France and repairing bikes into the space.
In the pictures above you can see the contestant’s final scheme which includes a bike wheel light and storage rack.
This might look like an unusual scheme, however, bikes are often something which can be used as a design element. They are also something that often needs to be stored inside, particularly in big cities such as London. Here is a look at some inspiring products that are all designed for or with bicycles.
Designer Andrew Gregg manipulates bike parts to create interesting bespoke table and chair designs.
Whilst the wheels of the bikes can create a lovely effect there are also other elements of a bicycle which can be up-cycled. Some lovely examples of this include a chandelier made from bike chains and this lamp made from some of the gears and the body of the bicycle.
A bar in Bucharest named Bicicleta takes this concept one step further with the up-cycling of beautiful old English bike parts to create stunning bar seating and tables.
The storage of bikes is another issue which has led to some interesting products. A lot of people use bikes but can’t store them outside, often they live in small flats where both storage and floor space is at a premium. Here are some interesting ways of storing your bike in a small space.
This clever solution combines shelving with simple bike storage. However, this idea would probably only work with a sleek beautiful looking lightweight model.
Design Studio Quarterre mix their knowledge of cycling culture and interior design with their range of bike furniture.
The space under the stairs can often be difficult to utilise fully. This ingenious bike storage works well here, in particular due to the rough natural finishes in this apartment.
Another aspect to consider with retail design, is how to display bikes for sale. Here are two interesting examples on how to create beautiful retail spaces.
On the left we have a beautiful bike shop in Barcelona design by architect Joan Sandoval. They offer bespoke bikes and create a “choose your own” display for each element of the bicycle. On the right we have an assembly line style ceiling display of racing bikes, which can be found in the main hall of the Riverside Museum in Glasgow which was designed by Zaha Hadid.
To conclude, it is possible to find inspiration in the most unusual of places. As a designer there are many ways of turning a potential eye sore into a design feature.
Even if you and your bicycle have your differences there is still a way to pay homage to it within your design. Mounted animal heads are very much on trend at the moment however, these mounted bike handles make even more of a statement! Designed by Architect Alex Appleton , you can have one made especially for you from as little as £50.
BBC, (2014). The Great Interior Design Challenge. – 6. Almshouses – Southwark. [Online video ]. Mon, 27 Jan 2014. Available from: http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b03t8w8c/The_Great_Interior_Design_Challenge_Almshouses_Southwark/. [Accessed: 5.2.14]
Web Urbanist-. (n.d). Refab: 20 Eye-Catching Pieces of Recycled Urban Furniture. [Online].n.d. Available from –
http://weburbanist.com/2008/03/26/20-eye-catching-pieces-of-recycled-urban-furniture-geeky-and-ecological-reuse-of-ordinary-objects/ [Accessed: 5.2.14]
Design Rulz. (n.d). 25 Ideas of How to Recycle Old Bicycles Wisely. [Online]. N.d. Available from –
http://www.designrulz.com/product-design/2012/08/25-ideas-of-how-to-recycle-old-bicycles-wisely/. [Accessed: 5.2.14]
Lushome. (n.d). Interesting Bar Interior Design Recycling Old Bikes Into Unique Furniture [Online]. n.d. Available from –
http://www.lushome.com/interesting-bar-interior-design-recycling-ol-bikes-unique-furniture/98936. [Accessed: 5.2.14]
Flohome Design,- Stevaliana. (2013). Sensational Creative Bike Storage Designs. [Online July 24th, 2013.. Available from –
http://www.flohomedesign.com/sensational-creative-bike-storage-designs/. [Accessed: 5.2.14]
Daury, Stephane. (2011). Elegant Bike Storage Solutions by Design Studio Quarterre (via Freshome.com – Interior Design & Architecture Newsletter). [Online]
August 24th 2011. Available from: http://tekartist.org/2011/08/24/elegant-bike-storage-solutions-by-design-studio-quarterre-via-freshome-com-interior-design-architecture-newsletter/ [Accessed: 5.2.14].
HomeTrenDesign. (2012). Stairs design.. [Online]. Available from – http://www.hometrendesign.com/42-storage-space-under-stairs-ideas/bike-storage-clever-ideas-under-stairs-in-hallway. [Accessed: 5.2.14]
Freshome. (n.d). Ultimate Biker’s Thrill: Museum-like Bicycle Shop in Barcelona. [Online]. Available from – http://freshome.com/2011/05/21/ultimate-bikers-thrill-museum-like-bicycle-shop-in-barcelona/. [Accessed: 5.2.14]
Interior Design. (n.d). POETRY IN MOTION [Online]. Available from – http://legacy.interiordesign.net/slideshow/2159-Poetry_in_Motion.php?photoId=367058&photoUrl=/photo/367/367058-Racing_bikes_ride_a_track_looping_above_the_main_hall_of_Zaha_Hadid_Architects_s_Riverside_Museum_in_Glasgow_Photography_Iwan.jpg. [Accessed: 5.2.14]
DAILY MAIL REPORTER. (2012). Forget antlers … put an old bike on your wall! Trend for Bicycle Taxidermy steps up a gear. [Online]. Available from – http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2253295/Forget-antlers—old-bike-wall-Trend-Bicycle-Taxidermy-steps-gear.html. [Accessed: 5.2.14]